The Boys, Volume 1: The Name of the Game – Review

Reading this comic, you’d be forgiven for missing the subtle message: Garth Ennis REALLY doesn’t like superheroes.

This comic takes place in a world full of superheroes, like the DC or Marvel universes. The heroes do save the world, but here they are far more obsessed with being celebrities and pop culture icons, and all the debauchery that comes along with that.

Our real “heroes” are The Boys, a group of weirdos hired to keep the supes in check. The characters are horrible, but by the end, I couldn’t help but warm to them! That’s part of Ennis’s charm – writing deplorable yet really likeable characters.

“Remember the seven Ps.”
“Seven what?”
“Proper preparation and planning… Prevent piss-poor performance.”

It’s full-on, perhaps to a fault – that’s up to you. But I love it. Despite first appearances, it’s not a violent, sex-filled fantasy, it’s a critique of the superhero world. It just comes from the very angry writing of Garth Ennis.

After the first issue, I can say it’s definitely no ‘Preacher’. That series may be my all-time favourite. But it’s the next best thing. It’s horrible and disgusting at times, but it’s also got genuinely great characters, some really funny moments, and a real heart (someone in there).

I highly recommend it. But be warned, it’s not for everyone.

Reviewed by Jack

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