Gen V

⭐⭐⭐½ based on 1 review.

tl;dr: A clichéd beginning that manages to craft an entertaining – if not entirely original – plot, with some fun characters and interesting implications for the wider narrative.


The Boys

Season One

Spoilers Ahead: My reviews are not spoiler-free. You have been warned.

It's fair to say that Gen V doesn't exactly pack the same kind of subversive punch as The Boys. The opening episode retreads a lot of the most cliché and common teenage superhero tropes, with zero subtlety. Sick of young heroes having their powers be a mirror for the "horrors" of puberty? Well, we're going to straight up give one-period powers. Bored of teen dramas tackling eating disorders? Let's just make a power-focused around that, too. I mean, the top of the campus food chain, a burnt-out nice-guy jock, is literally called Golden Boy and then quite literally burns himself out in the shock suicide that kicks everything off. Trans rights are the new big social issue with the kids? One of our main characters literally morphs between a dude and a lass #nonbinary #genderNonConforming ✌ Subtle, this ain't. And, of course, because this is in the world of The Boys, we get the gratuitous crap too. Giant penises, gore, all that "good" stuff.

But, looking past those first couple of floundering episodes, the show still crafts an entertaining and enjoyable story, filled with characters who may not exactly subvert expectations, but do at least leave you giving a crap about them. And it also doesn't sugarcoat the themes it's going for. Will the scene with Jordan confronting their dad win any awards for script, plot, or sensitivity? Nah, but it's not horribly either, and at least the trans-allegory is explicitly called out and confronted.

Throw in a decent mystery surrounding the Dean, the "Woods", and a not-awful twist with Cate, and by the midpoint the show has built up enough steam that it had me hooked. It never quite flys with the big boys (pun intended) but it expands on that world nicely, gives us some more time with the B-list cast, throws in a few decent cameos, and sets up some more interesting part of the overall universe. Plus, I don't hate that ending. The school schtick is done, so if we're getting a season two, or a crossover, then I'm pretty game.

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