The first photo of Amazon's adaptation of Garth Ennis' The Boys is an homage to the comics' first cover. The series that's been in development for over eight years is finally slated to premiere on the streaming giant in early 2019.
The Boys marks Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg's second adaptation of Ennis' work after AMC's Preacher, which just finished its third season. Both comics were considered unadaptable given their twin penchants for hyper-violence, but Rogen and Goldberg credit the success of Preacher with paving the way for The Boys to get off the ground. The series takes place in a world where superheroes exist, but also one in which the power they wield has corrupted them and turned them into exceptionally twisted villains. In response, the CIA develops its own superpowered team dedicated to the task of keeping celebrity supes in line. People have been trying to adapt the series since 2010, with Goldberg and Rogen attached since 2015. They sought homes at Cinemax and FX before finally landing at Amazon and nabbing Timeless' Eric Kripke as creator and showrunner. It was ordered to series in 2017 and started production in May of 2018.
Right on schedule for New York Comic Con, the series released its first photo today featuring the main cast closely mimicking the cover of the first issue of The Boys. Clockwise from top right are Laz Alonso (Detroit) as Mother's Milk, Karen Fukuhara (Suicide Squad) as The Female, Jack Quaid (The Hunger Games) as Hughie, Karl Urban (Star Trek) as Billy Butcher and Tomer Capon (When Heroes Fly) as Frenchie. See the poster and an image of The Boys' comic cover below.
The characters represent original members of the CIA team that uses its own blend of violence and morality to police wayward superheroes in conjunction with the American government as represented by Jennifer Esposito and Academy Award-winner Elizabeth Shue, neither of whom are pictured. Also not pictured are the superheroes The Boys will attempt to thwart who include Chase Crawford as Aquaman-esque The Deep, Antony Starr as patriotic sociopath The Homelander and Jessica Jones' Erin Moriarty as Annie January. If the above photo is any indication, we can expect them to somewhat resemble their characters' looks from the comics - a fact that perhaps has some Preacher and The Boys fans breathing a little easier.
This photo combined with the casting that's remained largely faithful to the source material would seem to indicate that Rogen and Goldberg's adaptation of The Boys will stick closer to home than their adaptation of Preacher has. Despite creating something unique and still ultimately respectful of Ennis' work, Preacher took some serious liberties by creating an almost entirely original first season and using sparing elements of the comics in the second. The third season mirrored the comics' storyline far more closely and faithfully, but fans of Ennis' work have remained frustrated that the AMC adaptation isn't more familiar. While it's probably too early to speculate on what The Boys will look like under Kripke's stewardship, this first photo would seem to indicate a close relationship with the source material that would have been far easier to execute on a streaming service rather than cable.
The Boys is expected to premiere on Amazon in early 2019.