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The Boys' Soldier Boy: What To Know About Jensen Ackles' Season 3 Character From The Comics

Jensen Ackles as Soldier Boy on The Boys
(Image credit: Amazon Prime)

As fans could likely tell from its teaser trailer, there are some very intriguing new developments on the horizon for The Boys Season 3 - the dirty and deranged Amazon Prime original hit inspired by the popular comic book series of the same name. Among them is the addition of Jensen Ackles into the Boys cast in the role of Soldier Boy.

Not to be confused with rap star Soulja Boy, this supe comes straight from the original Dynamite comics by Garth Ennis and will be making his screen debut in the new season of Eric Kripke’s acclaimed adaptation. However, the former Supernatural cast member has said that his version of Soldier Boy will be a bit of a departure from the source material, but more on that later. First, let’s talk about what we already about the character, as originally depicted in The Boys comic book, starting with his connection to a certain popular Marvel Character.

Soldier Boy from The Boys comic

(Image credit: Dynamite Comics)

Soldier Boy Is A Parody Of Captain America

As you might have been able to tell just by looking at him, Soldier Boy has a few things in common with Steve Rogers - a.k.a. Captain America from Marvel Comics, whom Chris Evans played to much acclaim in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It would come as no surprise that the similarities are not by accident, as the character is clearly intended to be a parody of the legendary Marvel Comics hero.

Like Cap, Soldier Boy served in the military during World War II, during which he was made into a super fast and super strong superhuman by a special serum we now know as Compound V. He also uses a shield in combat, often tends to avoid swearing and other deviant activity, and has even gone as far as calling out all 50 states as his signature battle cry. However, the one thing that sets him apart most from Steve Rogers is his lack of sufficient training, resulting in plenty of disastrous and fatal mistakes on his part that would ultimately lead his own death…not that Vought would let the public know that.

The first Soldier Boy from The Boys comic

(Image credit: Dynamite Comics)

There Are Actually Three Soldier Boys In The Boys Comic Universe 

The death that I am referring to is actually of the very first person to own the Solider Boy moniker, which I will elaborate on soon. However, the fact that this supe was actually a legacy character was never revealed until later in The Boys comic book series, having been kept a secret for years.

For years after the death of the original Soldier Boy, Vought covered up any record of the event, assigned the name to a new supe, and passed him off the same person, under the guise that he was actually immortal. Vought would keep this façade up until the death of the most recent incarnation of the “hero,” which I will also also elaborate on soon. First, however, let’s go back to the beginning for one of the most shocking facts about Soldier Boy.

Stormfront from The Boys comic

(Image credit: Dynamite Comics)

The Original Soldier Boy And Stormfront Fought In World War II Together

In The Boys Season 2, we were introduced to a gender-swapped iteration of Stormfront - a weather manipulator played by Aya Cash - who initially seemed like a cool and refreshingly honest addition to The Seven until she was revealed to be a staunch Nazi and the first supe ever created by Adolf Hitler himself. While the last season’s finale saw her meet a bitter end, I would not be surprised if she is mentioned in Season 3 by Jensen Ackles’ Soldier Boy as a reference to his connection to the original, male iteration of the character from the comics.

Back in the 1940s, Stormfront was part of a team of supes created by Vought called the Avenging Squad before it was known as the very Avengers-esque Payback, of which Soldier Boy served as the elected leader, even though Stormfront was really the one running things. He failed as a reliable leader due to his embarrassing incompetency - made most clear after he joined a unit led by Greg Mallory (Grace in the TV show) and exposed them to Nazi detection by authorizing an aerial recon that resulted in he and the rest of the platoon getting slaughtered during the Battle of the Bulge. If there is a silver lining to this, it would inspire Mallory to fight against Vought by creating the Boys.

The new Soldier Boy from The Boys comic

(Image credit: Dynamite Comics)

Soldier Boy’s Modern Incarnation Is Very Naive And Cowardly

It appears that incompetence is something that is passed down between each of those who hold the Solider Boy moniker - as seen most notably in the most recent incarnation. While he, unlike his first predecessor, is relatively well versed in hand-to-hand combat, he is extremely dimwitted, easily susceptible to manipulation, and not very brave, as evident from comic book cover art that sees the jittery supe standing in a puddle of his own urine. Not to mention, despite his superhuman abilities, he eventually died fighting The Boys’ human leader, Billy Butcher (played by Karl Urban in the show).

I will give Soldier Boy some credit for being one of the few supes in The Boys universe who actually believes in true heroism, even if it has blindly led him to commit depraved and demeaning acts. His fervent eagerness to join The Seven has driven him to mass murder and once allowed Homelander to manipulate him into having sex with him after being convinced it was part of a test that would earn him a membership. I am not sure if we can expect this to take place between Jensen Ackles and Antony Starr’s character, however, as the Soldier Boy we will meet in Season 3 is not quite the same as in comics.

Jensen Ackles on The Boys

(Image credit: Amazon Studios)

Jensen Ackles' Soldier Boy Will, Reportedly, Be Much Different From His Comic Books Counterpart

From what we can gather about Solider Boy from the comics, he seems to be someone of good intentions despite his many disastrous mistakes. However, that does not seem to be the case for Jensen  Ackles’ iteration. The following is how the actor explained his role in The Boys Season 3 to ComicBook.com in January 2022:

What happens is they kind of find me, and I've been essentially in captivity for a while. And, so, when they do, I'm bearded and I look like Cast Away, but then they clean me up and I get my superhero outfit back on and I go to town....He's a grandpa. He's from the '40s. He fought in World War II, and he's just this curmudgeon, bigoted a--hole. He doesn't age, so he's this young, 40-year-old superhero who's really 80 years old or 90 years old. There's just so much material there, you'll see what I mean when you see the show, but he has a taste for people who were of his era.

So, it looks like Eric Kripke and co. are doubling down on Soldier Boy’s parodic similarities to Captain America by also making him a man out of time, but one who also lives by the prejudices of his generation. I think that potentially making him one of the most evil characters we have seen yet on The Boys is an interesting idea, but I also hope Ackles’ role does reflect at least some of the comic book iteration’s key characteristics, particularly his ingenuous nature. Just imagine the how fun it will to see him being used by Vought as a weapon agains the titular vigilante crew, or even vice versa.

The Boys has yet to disappoint me, especially when it comes to playing with my expectations, so I feel confident in being able to trust that there is more in store for Soldier Boy in Season 3 than we are even anticipating. We shall see when it premieres (opens in new tab) on Amazon Prime on June 3, 2022.

Jason has been writing since he was able to pick up a washable marker, with which he wrote his debut illustrated children's story, later transitioning to a short-lived comic book series and (very) amateur filmmaking before finally settling on pursuing a career in writing about movies in lieu of making them. Look for his name in just about any article related to Batman.