Spoilers below for anyone who hasn't yet watched the first three episodes from The Boys Season 2.
Perhaps the biggest change that Amazon's The Boys introduced in its Season 2 premiere was the arrival of Aya Cash's Stormfront, a gender-swapped take on the hyper-biased supe from the comic book. After she instantly embedded herself beneath the agitated skin of Antony Starr's Homelander, the Seven's leader arrogantly confronted Giancarlo Esposito's Stan Edgar about the decision, and was none too pleased by the Vought CEO's DGAF approach. Though everyone else cowers from Homelander's gaze, Stan Edgar stands forever firm and fearless.
Stan Edgar is very likely the one Boys character who fears Homelander the least, since unlike Karl Urban's Billy Butcher, Stan's views aren't predicated on his innate hatred of the supe. When CinemaBlend had the pleasure of speaking with Giancarlo Esposito ahead of The Boys' Season 2 premiere, the actor reasoned that his character views Homelander as being something of a major man-child harboring fairly simplistic urges. When I asked If Stan truly is fearless of Homelander, here's what Esposito told me:
Any parent who watched Stan Edgar and Homelander's conversation in the Season 2 premiere likely recognized all too well the tone that Giancarlo Esposito used in the scene. Instead of blowing up on Homelander and performatively pulling rank, Stan stays calm while confidently opening up the hero's eyes to the big picture. (And also dropping a Soldier Boy reference.) Vought is not a superhero company, but a drug company, and in Stan's eyes, the product is worth far more than its superpowered mascot. If Homelander was focused on something beyond just himself, then Stan might have more to worry about, but we're definitely dealing with the most heinously narcissistic member of The Seven, Stormfront included.
Giancarlo Esposito talked more about how Stan Edgar's understanding of Homelander's psychological situation is the key to their imbalanced relationship, while also championing showrunner Eric Kripke and his creative team for giving the show's characters so many layers. In his words:
In recognizing those issues with parents and family, Stan Edgar thankfully didn't give in to Homelander's most salacious whims and wishes in the ways that Elisabeth Shue's Madelyn Stillwell did in Season 1. We probably won't see any breastmilk refrigerators anywhere in Stan's office, although since this is The Boys, I won't completely rule it out just yet.
Speaking of the dead-but-not-completely-absent Madelyn Stillwell, I brought up how Stan Edgar was forced to quickly find his footing with Homelander, since dealing with The Seven and other Vought factions was below his paygrade before Madison's untimely exit. He had to quickly assess the situation and handle things humanely, without resorting to The Seven's brand of problematic and highly dangerous behavior. Giancarlo Esposito shared his thoughts on Stan stepping up to bring in some order.
There's definitely a certain value to Stan Edgar's side of the coin, even if viewers shouldn't exactly feel kinship for one of the many people responsible for introducing and forcing Compound V into people's lives for decades on end. Still, in the side-bet battle of "Stan Edgar vs. Homelander," it's way easier to put money on Vought's head honcho, even without any heightened powers to speak of, because he came into the game knowing the players and the rules, while everyone else had to catch up.
To that end, Giancarlo Esposito talked about Antony Starr's Homelander angrily realizing just how sincere and true Stan's argument is.
Considering Homelander pushed his own kid off a room and can't stop making The Deep feel like shit about his gills, it may still be a long while before viewers get a glimpse of any humanity behind those laser-blasting eyes. But if it ever happens, it'll likely be because he learned a few lessons from Stan motherfucking Edgar.
We have lots of questions about what's coming next after these first three episodes, so check those out and remember The Boys' remaining episodes will be debuting weekly on Amazon Prime Video every Friday. Stay tuned to CinemaBlend for more exclusive Boys content and bookmark our 2020 Fall TV premiere schedule to see what shows are coming soon.
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Nick is a Cajun Country native, and is often asked why he doesn't sound like that's the case. His love for his wife and daughters is almost equaled by his love of gasp-for-breath laughter and gasp-for-breath horror. A lifetime spent in the vicinity of a television screen led to his current dream job, as well as his knowledge of too many TV themes and ad jingles.