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The Boys Volume 1: The Name of the Game by…
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The Boys Volume 1: The Name of the Game

by Garth Ennis, Darick Robertson (Illustrator)

Series: The Boys (1)

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324None33,981 (4)11
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  1. 10
    The Pro by Garth Ennis (ryvre)
    ryvre: A short graphic novel about a prostitute who is granted superpowers. I'd recommend it to any fans of Garth Ennis, especially those who enjoy his superhero work.
  2. 00
    Sleeper: Season One by Ed Brubaker (McMinty)
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English (12)  Swedish (1)  All languages (13)
Showing 1-5 of 12 (next | show all)
You have to leave your sensibilities at the door. In an Ennis story, there are no insults carefully coached in PG-acceptable cussing. There is nothing off limit. The sex is violent and the violence is ugly. Don’t get me wrong, there are some really funny moments, in that “oh Goddess I can’t believe I laughed at that” kind of way. One involves a hamster.

Open to a double page. On the left, a man is getting his head squarely kicked in by a pair of big black boots. On the right, a big hulking man in black sits relaxing on a bench in Washington, looking like he owns the world and everything in it. He watches a group of super powered beings fly overhead. He has a smirk on his face when he says “I’m gonna ******’ have you. You ****.”

It’s obvious from page one that this man is dangerous. He owns every room he walks into. He has that air of Londoner menace about him – he could be in one of the Firms tearing up a pub after a football match. But what he’s doing now is getting the band back together, and you can bet that while maybe no one can out-menace him, you don’t want to meet the kind of people he’d recruit.

That was my first impression of Butcher. It’s when you meet the people he’s fighting, the people behind the masks, that you finally realise why it takes someone like Butcher and the Boys to keep them in line.

The Boys is the story of the CIA-backed team who monitor the world’s exploding population of super-powered beings. They watch, they control and they sometimes take them out.

Volume 1 follows Butcher seeking out the rest of his team, including a new addition: Wee Hughie, who sees the love of his life brutally killed by a super powered being, and looks suspiciously like Simon Pegg.
We also meet the people behind the super-hero masks, as naïve Starlight leaves the Young Americans (a teenage superhero group who attend events such as “Capes for Christ”) and signs on with the Seven – Ennis’ answer to the Justice League.

As always, Garth Ennis delivers a brutal look at a world we think we know, a world that will never be the same again. Darick Robertson backs this up with some intense, dark art.

Some part of me feels like I should condemn the book for it’s treatment of female characters… But I can’t. There are strong women in this book, and there are messed up women. There’s a member of the Boys known as “The Female” who is a whole other kind of crazy and can clearly hold her own. Then there’s the young Starlight. The female members of the Seven look like typical female superheroes, all big breasts and long legs. This isn’t a coincidence, just think of the depictions of Power Girl over the years. Comics have traditionally been aimed at teenage boys, and this is reflected in the presentation of the female characters. It’s only in the last decade or so that the Big Two publishers have acknowledged that female fans exist – and they still have far to go.

The female superheroes in The Boys are a reflection of the “real” female superheroes.
Another reason I can’t condemn this book is that some dark part of me looks forward to seeing more of the perverse, more depravity, more violence, and I’ll own those feelings.

I love it.

http://annikisbookcase.com/2013/04/the-boys-vol-1/ ( )
  anniki | Jul 16, 2013 |
The story is dark and twisted and along the premise of 'who watches the Watchmen?' and I really liked this concept. It shows that superhumans are precisely that- HUMAN. Power corrupts and the supes are not beyond that character flaw. So who checks that power? That is where The Boys come in. They are a government- backed group, each person with their own personal score to settle with the supes. It gets graphic and bloody and very close to X rated. All good things by my calculations.

However, I am not a fan of graphic novels in general. I prefer solid text and to let my imagination paint the picture. The frames- although well done- interrupt my reading and I find that frustrating.

For anyone who enjoys graphic novels, I'm sure you'd love this one. If you're not a fan to begin with, I don't see this one doing much to convert you. ( )
2 vote KayPrime | Feb 23, 2012 |
Here's the thing about Garth Ennis. His graphic novels are violent, gratuitous, foul and occasionally teeth-jarringly juvenile (in an adults-only sex and gore kind of way) but still oddly readable. This is the first volume in the tale of a special CIA group (essentially a bunch of psychotic thugs) whose aim is to hold super-hero groups accountable. And of course the super-heros are all seedy, lying, cheating, greedy perverts. And they get what's coming to them, apparently. Of course while I'm reading this, I'm wondering, okay so there needs to be a secret group to watch the watchmen, but, umm... who watches the watchmen watchers? (No one apparently). ( )
2 vote iftyzaidi | May 16, 2011 |
Outstanding. ( )
  DanielClausen | Dec 18, 2010 |
Quite funny. I'd given Garth Ennis a break for a while, but the Boys shows he's still got the stuff. If you like childish, grotesque, humor, and horrific violence as much as I like childish, grotesque, humor, and horrific violence, you'll love the Boys. ( )
2 vote andystehr | Oct 5, 2010 |
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» Add other authors (2 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Garth Ennisprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Robertson, DarickIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
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For Ben Abernathy, Scott Dunbier, and Jim Lee
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Butcher:
"I'm gonna fuckin' have you.
You count."
"Come on, Terror."
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"This is going to hurt! In a world where costumed heroes soar through the sky and masked vigilantes prowl the night, someone's got to make sure the "supes" don't get out of line. And someone will! Billy Butcher, Wee Hughie, Mother's Milk, The Frenchman, and The Female are The Boys: A CIA-backed team of very dangerous people, each one dedicated to the struggle against the most dangerous force on Earth - superpower! Some superheores have to be watched. Some have to be controlled. And some of them - sometimes - need to be taken out of the picture. That's when you call in The Boys!"--Amazon.… (more)

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