4 Things You Should Know About Soldier Boy Before His Debut on The Boys

Getty / Rodin Eckenroth

Supernatural is almost over, but Jensen Ackles already has his next role lined up, joining The Boys as Soldier Boy in the upcoming third season. So who is Soldier Boy, exactly, and what was he like in the comics? From the sound of things, he’s a pretty colorful character, even though he’s not one of the “main” superheroes. These are the four things you should know about the comic version of Soldier Boy – spoilers ahead, obviously!

1. He’s Basically a Parody of Captain America

A serum-enhanced super-soldier, originating in WWII, with a patriotic theme and a clean-cut, morally superior persona – it’s pretty clear that Soldier Boy is an exaggerated parody of Captain America. In the comics, he’s notably more old-fashioned and naive than the rest of the superheroes, refusing to engage in swearing, casual sex, and the other hedonistic behavior that his colleagues embraced. He also takes the whole “patriotic hero” thing to a hilariously over-the-top level, frequently spouting off cheesy, faux-patriotic lines or using a running list of American states as a “battle cry.” Because of his squeaky-clean persona, he’s elected the leader of a team called Payback, which also includes Stormfront (another clue that she’s down but not out at the end of season 2), but he longs to join The Seven.

2. His Powers Are Mostly Physical

One of the biggest differences between Soldier Boy and Cap is the latter’s heart. Basically, Soldier Boy is a deconstruction of all the outward traits of Captain America and similar characters, but without the sharp tactics and the big heart. The first Soldier Boy, who fought during WWII, was given superpowers through an experimental serum called Compound V. As a result, he gained strength and enhanced reflexes, as well as a healing factor that allows him to keep fighting even after sustaining injuries that would take down a normal human. He’s not, however, immortal or totally immune to harm.

3. He’s a Legacy Character

That healing factor helps with the ruse that Soldier Boy is one person who’s been aging superslowly since the 1940s. In fact, there have been multiple Soldier Boys. The original’s lack of intelligence and heart proved to be his doom: he made a selfish, bad call that led to his camp being discovered by the Germans and his entire team, except him and the future founder of The Boys, being killed. Although the superhero community keeps up the pretense that he’s a long-lived WWII vet, the title is actually a legacy. The present-day Soldier Boy – the one Ackles will presumably be playing – is actually the third Soldier Boy.

4. He Has a Creepy History with One of The Seven

The most headline-grabbing part of Soldier Boy’s arc, though, is his history with Homelander (who is basically a dark parody or deconstruction of Superman). During an annual event that brings superheroes together for a week of debauchery, drugs, and sex, Soldier Boy is tricked into having sex with Homelander under false pretenses: he believes that he’s undergoing a recruitment test to join The Seven, while Homelander knows perfectly well that’s not the case.

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