Overview

The Boys #5

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The Boys #5

Credits

  • Words: Garth Ennis
  • Art: Darick Robertson
  • Inks: Darick Robertson
  • Colors: Tony Avina
  • Story Title: Cherry: Part 3
  • Publisher: DC Comics/WildStorm
  • Price: $2.99
  • Release Date: Nov 22, 2006

While Hughie contemplates his future, degenerate superteam, Teenage Kix is blackmailed into choosing one team member to publicly hang out to dry.

Though The Boys has been enjoyable in its own right, Garth Ennis made a huge gaffe by saying that this title would "out-Preacher, Preacher." In my own experience on comic message boards around the internet, Preacher is often cited as a favorite title, and therefore if anything is to change that, it would have to be pretty darn special and not waste any time being special. So far, The Boys has not even been close to being able to approach this, and by comparison, Ennis looks like he’s trying too hard.

For what it’s worth, Ennis is slowly telling an interesting story. There has been little more than sex (lots of sex), lies and videotape as the anti-superteam superteam has fallen into place, but with this issue Ennis looks like he might be putting together some minor plot threads that could build into something more. Anyone who has read Ennis’s work in the past will know that he lives for dark humor and ultra-violence. As Preacher showed, he is at his best when he mixes human drama and relatable characters into the equation. The focus now must be on putting the Boys together and showing readers what they can really expect out of the book. Looking at the final pages of this issue, I’m hoping we’re looking at an over-the-top smackdown in thirty days.

Without Darick Robertson’s dark, gritty and sometimes humorous visuals this book probably wouldn’t be half as enjoyable as it is. Just looking at the page layouts and character expressions tells me that Robertson is enjoying himself. He hasn’t gotten quite as detailed as he was on Transmetropolitan, and that is a good move. This story is all about the characters; their setting could be "generic big city" or "Midwestern corn field" for all that it matters, and it would have little effect on the story being told. Robertson knows this and, except when the story mentions specific settings, downplays the backgrounds in favor of the characters and their interactions.

I may be premature in saying it, but The Boys will never "out-Preacher, Preacher." However, Ennis has a chance to transcend that ideal and tell a story that is worthy of its own separate praise. And though I am likely in it for the long haul, based on the final page, the coming issue is likely to set the overall tone for how far The Boys plans to go.

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