The Boys, Amazon Prime Video’s show about a world where superheroes are real, powerful, and mostly amoral psychopaths, is coming sometime in 2024. So Amazon revealed with a couple of new posters earlier today:
The third season of The Boys aired in 2022. I think we all would have preferred the fourth drop a little earlier, but at least we know it’s on the way. “[M]ost of the editing is done, we’re now deep into the music and visual effects,” Kripke told Variety. “Marketing is starting to taxi their planes on the runway. There’s a lot happening behind the scenes of The Boys Season 4, I can say that.”
Part of the reason for the wait between seasons may be to give The Boys spinoff Gen V some time in the spotlight. In fact, if you watched the recent season 1 finale to Gen V, you got to see a couple of cameos from the cast of the mothership show. Vought CEO Ashley Barrett (Colby Minifie) stepped in to handle a crisis at Godolkin University, a college for young superheroes; Homelander (Antony Starr) laser blasted our hero Marie Moreau (Jaz Sinclair) for having the audacity to defend non-superpowered people from a group of homicidal Supes; and Billy Butcher (Karl Urban) showed up in a stinger to investigate the ruins of a superhero research facility.
Do you need to have watched Gen V to understand The Boys season 4?
So does this mean that characters from Gen V will show up in The Boys season 4? Neither Kripke now Gen V showrunner Michele Fazekas would confirm that. “The stories are going to talk to each other in a way,” Fazekas told TV Insider. “It’s like you can watch The Boys Season 4 and have never seen Season 1 of Gen V and be totally fine, but if you watch both, there’s a nice little payoff for you.”
I hope that’s true, that you can watch The Boys without having seen Gen V. I wouldn’t want this series to start feeling like homework. “We didn’t go into this finale saying, ‘we need a Butcher cameo and a Homelander cameo.’ They were separate ideas,” Fazekas said. “Homelander came before Butcher because we knew we wanted to see Homelander. But that’s a bell you can’t really ring that much. We wanted to be very mindful of when we did that. And it would come up over the season, and then it made sense to do it at the almost-final, culminating moment.”
But even though the two shows will remain discrete, they do take place in the same world, and Kripke is mindful of when everything happens. According to him, The Boys season 4 will pick up “only a couple of days” after the events of Gen V. “We try to keep the timeline super simple because all that folding-in-on-itself timeline stuff that I think other comic book universes find themselves having to do is just bewildering for me as a viewer,” he said. “It’s like there’s Season 3 of “The Boys,” and then after that Gen V takes place, and then after that The Boys Season 4 takes place. And then after that, Gen V Season 2 takes place. It’s all more like cars on a train than it is a plate of spaghetti.”
In Gen V, there’s a plot involving a virus designed to kill Supes that will be, according to Kripke, “a pretty big part of [The Boys] Season 4.” Hopefully everything is clear without those who skipped Gen V having to double back. We’ll find out sometime next year.