Even The Boys Showrunner Was Surprised By Having A Real-Life Penis Set On Fire For Herogasm Ep

Antony Staff on The Boys.
(Image credit: Amazon Prime Video)

Eric Kripke has always been known to push the envelope on Amazon Prime Video’s irreverent superhero series The Boys, but he really outdid himself in Season 3 with the “Herogasm” episode. The comic book miniseries of the same name was a spinoff of The Boys comics, and it was something he’d hoped he would eventually be able to tackle on-screen. Kripke worked hard to bring his vision of a huge superhero orgy to life, but even after creating what he called “one of the more graphic hours of mainstream television,” there was one stunt he was still shocked about: setting an actual penis ablaze.

For “Herogasm,” Eric Kripke packed the set with half-naked actors in specially designed (and often crotchless) costumes, and they simulated sex of all kinds in the background, as Hughie (Jack Quaid), Butcher (Karl Urban), and Soldier Boy (Jensen Ackles) crashed the Vought-sponsored orgy in search of Homelander and Soldier Boy’s former Payback team members. Walking through one of the scenes is a supe with his penis on fire, and Kripke revealed at a Metacritic FYC panel that the stuntman “did that for real.” He shared: 

The gel is so good in terms of how it doesn't burn you that it was a stunt man, and I was like, 'Really? Are you sure that he's going to do that?' And our stunt coordinator John Koyama, who's also amazing, said, 'Oh yeah, no, it's going to be fine.' So he got one of his stunt guys to rub all of that fire gel all over his junk and lit it — take after take after take. I couldn't get over it.

Asking someone to take on such a stunt for just a quick glimpse in a scene was, forgive me for saying, pretty ballsy. I'd love to see footage of the stunt coordinator’s conversations with his staff when asking for volunteers to repeatedly light their nether regions on fire. Then this guy had to rub himself (I’m assuming pretty thoroughly) with fire gel over and over for multiple takes? What a day at the office!

You can spot this everyday hero when Starlight (Erin Moriarty) and M.M. (Laz Alonso) enter the house and lament Frenchie’s absence, as he’d always wanted to attend Herogasm.

Eric Kripke has talked before about his "Herogasm"-oriented conversations with Amazon’s Standards & Practices Department regarding details like “how often you can simulate humping and whether or not you can show an erect penis and how long you can show a private part.” It turns out the network’s biggest red flags centered around The Deep (Chace Crawford) getting frisky with an octopus, as that violated the company’s policy regarding bestiality.

The added beauty of “Herogasm” was that it didn’t just satisfy fans’ clamoring for Eric Kripke to adapt the spinoff, but it provided tons of important plot as Season 3 came to an end. Even though we know The Boys Season 4 started filming this year, we likely still have quite a while to wait until we actually get our big questions answered, and to see the highly anticipated spinoff Gen V. In the meantime, you can relive the first three seasons with an Amazon Prime Video subscription, and see what else is headed our way in the new year with our 2023 TV schedule

Heidi Venable
Content Producer

Mom of two and hard-core '90s kid. Unprovoked, will quote Friends in any situation. Thrives on New Orleans Saints football, The West Wing and taco trucks.