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Is 'The Boys: Diabolical' canon? All you need to know ahead of Season 3 release

'The Boys: Diabolical' (Image via Amazon Prime Studios)
'The Boys: Diabolical' (Image via Amazon Prime Studios)
Abhirup Sengupta

After Amazon dropped their version of an animated-What If…? series based on alternate versions of The Boys characters, fans wondered whether it carried any connection to the main show. While the entire show may not be considered canon, the finale episode has been confirmed to be in the same timeline as The Boys.

Following the release of Diabolical, the head-writer and showrunner of the live-action series Eric Kripke confirmed that the finale episode of the animated series is canon to the main show. Episode eight of the animated series featured the story of Homelander joining the Seven and had many original cast members return to voice their respective characters.

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The episode had Antony Starr, Giancarlo Esposito, and Elisabeth Shue return to voice their respective roles as Homelander, Stan Edgar, and Madelyn Stillwell.


What did the creators say about the specific episode being canon to the main The Boys show?

While speaking with Variety about the One Plus One Equals Two episode, Kripke said:

"The finale is canon, yeah. I thought [Diabolical showrunner Simon Racioppa] did such a good job with it…There is a certain amount of background setup of really understanding the relationship between Homelander and Black Noir and giving us a deeper understanding before Season 3."

Meanwhile, Simon Racioppa, who created the animated series, took to Twitter and shared Kripke's tweet about the episode being canon. This confirmed the backstory of Homelander and Black Noir showcased in the animated series is actually set in the past as per the main show's continuity.


How did The Boys: Diabolical finale connect to the main show and the upcoming season 3?

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While Diabolical did not directly hint at the plot of Season 3, the animated show referenced several events and characters from the original Garth Ennis comics as well as the primary Amazon Studio show. Amongst the plethora of references, the animated show featured Billy Butcher's dog, Terror, who appeared in Diabolical's episodic intros.

Furthermore, the show referenced The Boys' airplane fiasco, as well as Vought's compound V babies with laser eyes. However, the direct connection with the live-action series came in episode eight of the animated show.


Homelander's back story

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Diabolical's One Plus One Equals Two episode showcased Homelander's initial days as he joined the Seven. In the episode, while introducing Homelander to the public, they reference Soldier Boy, who would be played by Jensen Ackles in the upcoming Season 3 of The Boys.

Furthermore, the episode showcased Homelander being tasked with rescuing hostages at a chemical plant, which was overtaken by CLF terrorists. In his attempt to rescue the hostages, Homelander is subtly tricked by Black Noir. This causes a tank to blow up at the facility, which kills most of the hostages and a journalist reporting at the scene.

After the fiasco at the factory, Noir gave Homelander a piece of paper that seemingly had a cover-up story for accidentally killing the hostages by shifting the blame to the terrorists. A similar cover-up was plotted by Homelander in The Boys and the comics when he helped crash a flight taken over by terrorists.

The episode also hints at Homelander's childhood, when he was being experimented upon by Vought with compound V.


Black Noir is the contingency plan for dealing with Homelander

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Homelander is perhaps the strongest superhero in the show's universe, which makes him a massive risk to Vought should he go rogue. Thus, Madelyn Stillwell (Elisabeth Shue) reveals that Black Noir is one of the contingencies to kill Homelander.

The revelation hints at the character's comic origin, which could serve as a potential plot point in future seasons. In the comics, Black Noir was a clone of Homelander, who looked exactly like him. This could be explored in future seasons if Homelander turns rogue or becomes more psychopathic.

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However, it is expected that the series will likely have Homelander's son, Ryan, potentially kill the leader of the Seven. Despite severe controversies with Antony Starr's arrest in Spain, Season 3 of the show will premiere on June 3.


Edited by Siddharth Satish

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