Writer(s): Garth Ennis
Artist(s): Darick Robertson
Date Published: 2006
In today’s world one corporation has perfected a drug that gives regular joes and janes an aleatory super power.
Problem is that these folks with powers usually have no training on how to handle them and wind up makings lots of snafus.
That’s why a covert group was formed, called simply The Boys, who have the means and the intention to bring the heroes back in line.
This is good vintage Garth Ennis. I haven’t had so much fun watching heroes get smacked around since by Pat Mills and Kevin O’Neill stopped making Marshal Law comics (more on that on another post, another day).
Garth Ennis gives us an ultra realistic and ultra violent look at our current world if supes existed. And if you have followed the career of this young writer, you know he seems to have an uncanny knack for using every day situations, surrounded them with extraordinary characters and make comic books magic!
You will find many winks to current political issues (The vice president involved in questionable high finance practices, companies involved in politics and marketing, etc) and the irreverent light that he sheds on issues such as sexual fixation, drugs and orgies.
My only complaint about Garth Ennis is that he seems to be stretching too much the device of “the few chaps sitting around the table and talking”
It works very well in movies (Qentin Tarantino comes to mind when trying to use a reference about this) but it kinda gets long on the tooth if you start following a comic book writer’s work.
But when you feel that Mr. Ennis is involved a wee bit too much on scribe’s onanism, here comes the brilliant Darick Robertson to impress us with his expressive lines, his impressionistic angles, and mood-setting splash pages.
Darick is one of those rare artists that balances harshness of lines with human expressiveness and that conveys to this book a strange balance between walking a rough line while staying human, much as the main protagonist, Hughie does.
Dynamite did a great job publishing this book, and the collected Trade paperback was released without much delay, so us, collectors, were greatful that we could put the TPB on our shelves soon, and the single issues on e-bay.
If you perform a quick Google search you can find lots of tidbits of juicy info, such as DC being uneasy on them making so much fun of the Capes, and cancelling the title, but being nice enough (Hats off to you, DC) for letting them take it to another imprint, such as Dynamite.
The stories are branched in arches and storylines, and most of them are always enjoyable, albeit some get to be a bit slow, but like the brilliant story-teller that he is, Mr. Ennis makes us sometimes suffer through painfully slow character elaborations, or background explanation, just to tantalize us with something completely new , unexpected and devious, like nothing we had read ever before.
So, on my Critics rating, The Boys gets
8 ½ STARS