In the previous episode of The Boys, Annie was kidnapped and subsequently rescued from Vought, thanks to Hughie (and Lamplighter, though he toasted himself to a crisp in the conference room). Becca’s relationship with her son reached a boiling point as Homelander and Stormfront revealed that she’s been lying to him, which ended with the boy taking off with the Supes. Most importantly, it seemed as though a day of reckoning had finally come for Vought as the trial commenced, until heads began exploding — literally. Keep reading to find out what happened in the season 2 finale of The Boys, “What I Know.”
WARNING: The Boys contains mature subject matter, potentially triggering events, vulgar language, violence, and gore. Those themes may appear in the following recap.
Following a “school safety video” for surviving Supervillain attacks starring Homelander himself, we open with a meeting between Grace Mallory, congresswoman Neuman, and US Secretary of Defense Robert Singer. Singer explains that the President is declaring a national emergency and bypassing the FDA to authorize Compound V for use by law enforcement and first responders.
At the Vought compound, Becca is on the run, attempting to make an escape through the woods.
Annie says goodbye to her mother, who’s taking a leave from the five-star accommodations of the Boys’ hideout. She’s a bit taken aback that Annie is sticking with “the anxious boy with the moist handshake,” but hey, Hughie’s been a through a lot, okay? You can’t expect a man with that much pent up anxiety to not have sweaty palms. The Boys are formulating their next plan when Annie interjects and says that she knows someone else that could testify.
Annie and Hughie arrive at Maeve’s house in an attempt to rope her in on their mission against Vought, but she angrily refuses. “It doesn’t matter what we do. Nothing changes, nothing ever changes or gets better. And I’m tired.”
There’s a commotion upstairs at the hideout, and Butcher heads to the street entrance to find a woman arguing at the front door — Becca — who informs him that Homelander took Ryan.
Mr. Edgar and Alastair are having a meeting to discuss the possibility of reinstating A-Train and The Deep into The Seven, though it doesn’t seem to be going well. Their conversation enters interesting territory, which further begs the question of what exactly this weird Fresca-loving cult is up to. A-Train enters the room after they both exit, having overheard their discussion about him.
Homelander and Stormfront take Ryan, who has been cooped up in the “West Elm Death Star” (Vought Tower), to Planet Vought. The two Supes are quickly overrun by fans, and Ryan begins to panic over the crowd. In a shocking turn of events, Homelander notices this and quickly removes his son from the situation.
Hughie and Annie are back on the road when A-Train pops into the car without warning (“Sup, shitbirds!”) and Hughie nearly crashes the car. As they stumble out, terrified, A-Train hands them a file on Stormfront (exposing that “Nazi bitch” — we love to see it!) and tells them that they’re even now.
Butcher meets up with Mr. Edgar and makes a deal with him — he’ll get Ryan back from Homelander and Vought can take the kid (and do a better job at hiding him this time around). Meanwhile, Butcher intends to take off with Becca, and he tells Mr. Edgar that if she shows up begging to be reunited with her son, he needs to tell her that hiding him is the only way Vought can guarantee his protection from Homelander.
Homelander decides that his creepy cabin is the best place to take Ryan to calm down. He sits down with his son to make him feel better, while also continuing to work the angle of turning the kid into his monstrous Supe clone. Stormfront watches this tender family moment from across the room. Barf.
Butcher returns to the hideout with the location of Homelander’s cabin, and in turn, the others share the details found in Stormfront’s file about her (unsurprising) Nazi history. Though he intends to go it alone if he must, the Boys all agree to help Butcher in the mission to get Ryan away from Homelander. Before they leave, Becca puts a wrench in Butcher’s plans, as she makes him swear on Lenny’s soul that he’ll save Ryan no matter what and get him back to her. Well, that’s a problem.
Back at Homelander’s cabin, he’s attempting to teach Ryan to use his powers … to no avail. Stormfront, attempting to be encouraging in her own sick way, tries to drum up emotion in Ryan by telling him, “We’re under attack. Bad guys want to hurt us just because of what we look like. They want to wipe us from this earth just because of the colour of our skin. It’s called white genocide. We’re going to need people like you to protect our kind.” (This would be an opportune time for him to ‘accidentally’ turn on the eye lasers on her, really.) Before she can go off on another gross tangent, she gets an alert on her phone — her Nazi agenda has been leaked. Whoops! Too bad, so sad. She takes off for Vought Tower.
Meanwhile, the Boys have set up camp nearby and start to enact the first phase of their plan. They begin to blast loud sound waves from speakers in the woods, which prompts Homelander to come flying out of the house to figure out what’s going on. Becca and Butcher take advantage of this temporary distraction and take Ryan from the cabin (Becca introducing Butcher to her son as her husband? A-W-K-W-A-R-D.) Butcher drives them back to where the Boys are posted up, which seemingly wasn’t a part of the original plan. He tells M.M. to get Becca and Ryan to Mallory, and then shamefully tells Becca what his original deal with Mr. Edgar had been.
Vought operatives storm the cabin, looking for Ryan and Butcher. They’re not there … but Homelander certainly is. The Supe overhears someone ask over the radio, “Do you have the boy?” and he proceeds to kill one of the men with his laser vision.
As M.M., Becca, and Ryan drive off, Stormfront returns and sends the car flying. Butcher runs off toward the wreckage and escapes with Becca and Ryan once they’re free. M.M. rejoins Hughie, Frenchie, Annie, and Kimiko — the last of which lets out a startling burst of laughter. She signs to Frenchie, and he translates, telling Stormfront that Kimiko says she’s going to stick her boot up her “Nazi kitty.” This leads to a brawl between Annie, Kimiko, and Stormfront, with Frenchie, M.M., and Hughie watching uselessly off to the side.
For a moment, it appears that Stormfront has the upper hand … until reinforcements arrive. “Hey, Kraut.” Queen Maeve strolls over, while Kimiko recovers from her snapped neck and Annie pulls herself off of the ground. The three women proceed to quite literally kick Stormfront’s ass in what’s arguably one of the coolest fight scenes in the entire show (and M.M., Frenchie, and Hughie all looked like they’d unanimously agree). Stormfront, realizing that she won’t win this one, escapes.
Stormfront locates Butcher, Becca, and Ryan as they’re attempting to make their escape in the woods, and she sends a blast of lightning at Butcher, knocking him to the ground. Becca stabs Stormfront in the eye but ends up choke-slammed against a tree. Butcher attempts to shoot the Supe to save his wife, and then begins helplessly wailing on her with his crowbar. Ryan, incredibly upset at this point, finally taps into his powers. His eyes begin to glow red … the screen goes white … and Butcher wakes up on the ground.
The first thing that Butcher sees is a very crispy-looking Stormfront, one could call her … well done. Ryan, meanwhile, is crying, saying, “I’m sorry, Mom.” Becca is bleeding out heavily from a neck wound, and Butcher scrambles to her side, crying out for help that isn’t coming. Becca, in her final moments, tells him, “It’s not his fault. You make sure he knows that. He’s good. You promise me you keep him safe.” And then we see the fearsome Billy Butcher cry.
Butcher proceeds to pick up his crowbar, rounding on Ryan and looking downright murderous. Homelander appears suddenly, covered in blood from the cabin massacre. Quiet with rage after seeing what’s left of Stormfront, the Supe tries to get Ryan to leave with him, but the boy goes to Butcher’s side instead.
Before Homelander can do anything else, Maeve arrives. She shows him the GoPro footage and tells him that he’s going to let Butcher and Ryan go, he’s going to stop hunting Starlight, and he’s going to leave her and Elena alone … or else she’ll release the footage. Homelander, furious, threatens to destroy everything and everyone in retaliation, but Maeve doesn’t budge. “Great, as long as everyone sees what a fucking monster you are. As long as no one ever loves you again.” Butcher picks up Ryan and they leave.
We cut to a Vought press conference — they’ve put the release of Compound V on an indefinite hold. Homelander steps up to the mic to speak, acknowledging the heroism of Queen Maeve and Starlight and explaining that Stormfront has been neutralized and is being held in an undisclosed location. He then publicly apologizes to Annie and welcomes her back to The Seven. His speech fades out while he continues to drone on as the camera zooms in on his dead, dead eyes.
The Deep and A-Train are sitting in Alastair’s office. Alastair tells them that A-Train is back in The Seven … but The Deep? Not so much. He has … a bit of a meltdown, to say the least. “FUCK FRESCA.”
Hughie and Annie meet up at a park, and he asks her if it’s actually safe for her to go back to the Tower. Annie admits that it’s not, but if you jump ship and you let the assholes steer … then you’re a part of the problem, right?
Butcher is sitting with Ryan, and he gives him the St. Christopher necklace that Becca gave him long ago to keep him safe. Then, Mallory arrives and they take Ryan away. Mallory tells Butcher that all of the charges against him and the Boys are dropped, he’s a free man now. She also offers him a job, because the White House is opening an office of Supe affairs. Victoria Neuman is the new Czar and she’s sneaking her some off-the-books funding for a team to keep tabs on Supes. Butcher doesn’t answer her as he puts his sunglasses on and walks away. M.M. returns home to his wife and daughter, and Kimiko and Frenchie pack up their things from the hideout and leave together.
Because we haven’t suffered enough this season, we’re treated to a scene of Homelander standing atop the Tower, pants down, bathed in moonlight, and chanting, “I can do whatever I want. I can be whatever I want,” as he fondles himself. Please. Why?
At the Church, Alastair is on the phone with congresswoman Neuman. He congratulates her on her new position, and as they talk about the fact that it was his intel that took Stormfront down, he tells her, “That’s just the start, we have enough dirt to ruin a dozen Supes. It’ll be a death blow for Stan Edgar. That is, if you’re open to expediting the church’s tax-exempt status.” After he hangs up, he opens his can of Fresca and … HIS HEAD EXPLODES? IS THIS A FRESCA CONSPIRACY?
No, it’s Victoria Neuman, standing just outside of the gates to the building … and her eyes turn white for a moment. She smirks before walking away.
Congresswoman Neuman heads back to her office, where Hughie is waiting for her. He asks her if she can get him a job, because he still wants to fight Vought … just … not covered in quite as many guts. He feels like he’s never totally fit in with the Boys, and it’s time for him to stand on his own two feet. Little does he know, he’s put himself directly in the path of danger yet again.
The entire second season of The Boys is now available on Amazon Prime Video. And don’t forget to watch Prime Rewind: Inside The Boys, the official after-show. Check out all of our recaps for this season here, and stay tuned for our review!