The Boys Producers Discuss the Series’ Dark Tone

When Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson began publishing The Boys in 2006, Ennis promised that the series would “out-Preacher Preacher” in terms of its gruesome subject matter. So it’s fitting that the upcoming TV adaptation is being developed by the same creative team behind AMC’s Preacher. It’s also appropriate that the show is airing on a less-restrictive platform like Amazon Prime. Ahead of the new series’ premiere, executive producers Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg, and Eric Kripke appeared during a panel at this year’s Television Critics Association. Via /Film, they spoke at length about how The Boys will handle the book’s violent themes.

In case there was any doubt, Kripke assured fans that The Boys will retain most of its source material’s graphic content. “The comic book is incendiary in its material,” said Kripke. “There’s a ton of really shocking s***. It’s a really irreverent, really edgy show. We don’t want to shy away from the hard and ugly stuff, especially [what’s] happening in our world. The reason that one specific thing is in the books and the reason I felt strongly that we should put it in the show is because it’s happening. We need to talk about it. It needs to get out of the shadows and we need to have conversations, even uncomfortable and controversial ones.”

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However, not everything is fair game. “Frankly there’s a lot of stuff from the comic that, if I’m being honest, we would not do in the show,” continued Kripke. “For us, from the start was the notion of you have to make it about the characters and you have to take the world very, very seriously. You have to have fleshed out people that have heart. You have to tell stories about really what it is to be human. If you took it very, very seriously, then the irreverence wouldn’t be for shock value. It would be to further the character. For us, it was always like if something in the comic doesn’t further a character, we’d cut it. If there was an idea that was crazy but told us a new aspect of the character with integrity, then yeah.”

Rogen also chimed in about how The Boys is meant to take place in the real world. This means we can expect a few recognizable celebrities making cameos as themselves.

“Our connections made the reality of the show,” said Rogen. “We could get Jimmy Fallon. It seemed like a fun thing to anchor it as much in our world as possible. That is as much part of the take of the show. If it was real, it would be drastically different than presented to us. Just as the most famous of us tend to be the worst, the most powerful of us may not be the best of us, they may be the worst of us.”

The Boys doesn’t have an official release date yet, but it will be available on Amazon Prime later this year. You can share your thoughts on the producers’ remarks in the comment section below!