The Boys Finale: Deaths, Black Noir, Season 4 Explained by Showrunner



SPOILER ALERT: Don’t read if you haven’t seen The Instant White-Hot Wild, the final episode of The Boys season 3.

“The Boys” wrapped up its third season on Friday with a finale that included multiple character deaths, changes in alliances, and cliffhangers so massive even Starlight would have a hard time flying off them safely. Luckily for the Amazon Prime Video series, fans have got used to this madness and probably knew they were in for a wild ride when they tuned in to the Season 3 finale.

But to underline how much happened in the episode, here we are: Homelander (Antony Starr) kills Black Noir (Nathan Mitchell); The Deep (Chace Crawford) kills Robert Singer’s (Jim Beaver) VP pick and the spot goes to secretive supe Victoria Neuman (Claudia Doumit); Starlight/Annie (Erin Moriarty) flies with just a little help from Hughie (Jack Quaid); Queen Maeve (Dominique McElligott) sacrifices herself to save everyone from Soldier Boy (Jensen Ackles), loses her powers, is presumed dead by almost everyone and is free to live her life with Elena (Nicola Correia-Damude). Soldier Boy is put on hold again by Grace Mallory (Laila Robins); Ryan (Cameron Crovetti) chooses Homelander over Butcher (Karl Urban); Homelander reveals Ryan and his powers to the public and kills a protester, injuring his son, making the crowd love them both even more – and turning Ryan on; Butcher receives a prognosis that he has 12 to 18 months to live due to the damage Temp V has inflicted on his body; and Annie gives up her Starlight persona to become one of the boys.

diversity broke those big beats with “The Boys” showrunner Eric Kripke, who also teased where things are headed in Season 4.

Amazon Prime Video
Amazon Prime Video

So in the finale, Starlight flies. Can you now confirm Starlight can fly that this will be a continuous ability?

In general yes. She has to work on that. She needs to train. Right now it requires ridiculous powers she needs to get out of everything. She needs to figure out how not to cause blackouts around her. But she can fly in the comics, so we’ve always been interested in going in that direction. As she embraces her own power emotionally, she becomes more powerful physically.

Ryan sees the excited reaction from the QAnon-like crowd to Homelander killing the man who hurt him, and Ryan is quite excited himself at the crowd’s reaction. Where does this take us for Season 4? Because I’m embarrassed about how anyone’s going to behave, but I’m really worried about little Ryan’s reaction.

It’s not great. It’s just an overblown notion that the more terrible public leaders act, the more fans they seem to amass. And there’s always this expression that Trump can shoot a guy on Fifth Avenue and not lose any fans. And so we said, “Let’s do this. Let’s have Homelander kill a guy on Fifth Avenue and see what the reaction is.” And it’s just true. It’s like that campaign video where the guy actively says he’s going to hunt people down with his semi-automatic and goes into private homes to hunt them down – and people are now cheering for it. So for us, unfortunately, it wasn’t that far off from what was actually going to happen.

And then Ryan. Ryan is a really important part of the story because he’s half Becca, half Homelander. If Butcher figures out how to get his shit together and get the kid back, that might be the best weapon they have against Homelander. But vice versa. When Homelander wins over the kid, it’s apocalyptic because then there are two Homelanders. It’s like a children’s drama with apocalyptic twists. It’s like Kramer vs. Kramer meets Avengers: Endgame. So that’s going to be a really rich story going forward.

On the other side of Kramer vs. Kramer, Butcher is dead in 12 to 18 months! You only gave Butcher enough lifetime to try to fix that. How much of that will he actually give Ryan considering he’s dealing with it now and Neuman is the front runner for the next vice president?

Yes, it will probably be a slam dunk. You are dealing with the DeSantis ticket. That’s part of the fun of getting into Season 4, which we’re about to find out, but he’s got a crazy ticking clock. He has so much to do that he hasn’t done. And everything he’s tried up to this point has exploded in the most horrible way. What intrigues us about the question we ask about Butcher is whether he’s self-aware enough to realize that he’s causing his own unhappiness. Is he confident enough to actually see if he can change? Those are some of the interesting conversations we’re starting to have for Season 4.

Queen Maeve sacrifices herself to protect everyone from Soldier Boy and in the end she survives but loses her powers, although the world believes her dead and Vought supports this narrative. Does this mean actor Dominique McElligott is actually leaving the show? What was behind the decision to leave Maeve?

I don’t think The Boys will end without Maeve reappearing… We needed a way to gracefully pull Maeve off the show, have her walk to the exit. Obviously we didn’t want to kill them and fall into the tropes of gay characters and bisexual characters on shows getting killed. We wanted to do the opposite of that and send her away and give her a happy ending with Elena. The best way to do that was, well, drain her powers and she’s no longer useful in combat. And we did that because Annie can’t really grow into herself until all the characters she’s protecting are gone. It was important for her next step that her mentor characters and her protector characters go away. And so it’s just up to Annie. There’s no one left but Annie. So what will she do?

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Amazon Prime Video
Amazon Prime Video

Black Noir is dead. But the public doesn’t know that Black Noir is dead. So in season 4 the only members of the seven are Homelander, the Deep and A-Train?

It was a joke to us from the start that there are almost never seven members of the seven. After Episode 2 of Season 1 when Translucent explodes, that’s how it was for the longest time, because then the deep leaves and Stormfront comes in, but there’s never seven of them. So they really need to strengthen their ranks, I think that will be one of the exciting new releases next season. New members need to come in, members sympathetic to Homelander’s crazy cause. So he really needs to stack the deck with allies now that he has the ability to make those decisions.

I suppose because they didn’t reveal Black Noir’s death to the public in the very “brave Maeve” way they showed Maeve’s supposed death, they’re trying to keep that a secret for now. Don’t they have a plan to explain what happened to Black Noir?

Without spoiling anything, I’ll just say this: if you have a silent character in a make-up, it’s relatively easy to recast… If you notice in this season’s flashbacks, it was a different actor [Fritzy-Klevans Destine] and maybe that’s why we did it if We should recast Noir, we could recast him with Nathan [Mitchell, who has played Black Noir under the mask since Season 1].

A question we haven’t talked about in a while: Where is Cindy, the telekinetic supe from the Sage Grove Asylum in Season 2?

Cindy is out there. I just corresponded with Ess [Hödlmoser], who is the actor who plays Cindy. And Ess is actually a bit busy. So let’s find out. But Cindy will come back, there’s no way Cindy won’t come back. Cindy is too cool not to come back.

Season 4: You write it. how far are you in Because Karl Urban has previously said it will be ready for production by the end of the year.

That’s correct. That’s no secret. We start shooting at the end of August. I’m starting to look at some early drafts of the first couple. We’re still early, I think we’re right in the middle of publishing Episode 3 and I’m reading a draft of Episode 1 right now. And even at this stage, it’s early with some extensive rewrites and we’re still figuring it all out. But it’s super interesting and funny and really, really emotionally rich. Probably more emotionally complicated than ever. So far this has been my big snack. Everyone really tackles their core issues in a pretty exciting way, a very character driven season.

Why didn’t you have a scene between Jensen Ackles’ Soldier Boy and Jim Beavers’ character, presidential candidate Robert Singer, just so “Supernatural” fans could have a reunion? And what were your favorite “supernatural” Easter eggs from the ones you recorded?

I considered putting Soldier Boy and Singer together, but they were just in separate stories. I mean they’re technically in the same scene since Singer is on a stage and Homelander has this vision of Soldier Boy. But there is no interaction. I went back to Episode 5 specifically and that’s why I wrote that moment of Soldier Boy reacting to the Singer poster. I thought they will kill me if I don’t acknowledge that they are both in this universe together. So I inserted that.

I don’t know if it’s my favorite, but what comes to mind as a “Supernatural” reference, I think people like that we tend to do a lot of shots through the trunk. We did a few of these because it’s me and Phil Sgriccia. So having Jensen in Episode 7 and doing one of the trunk shots with Jensen, that’s something we asked for very specifically because we felt like that would be a fun callback for the fans.

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