Post Mortems

The Boys Boss Defends That Major Season Finale Exit, Insists 'It Was Time' for [Spoiler] to Move On

Warning: The following contains major spoilers for The Boys Season 3 finale. Proceed at your own risk!

One of The Boys‘ supes said goodbye during the Season 3 finale — but at least they did so with their life intact, which is more than we can say for [spoiler]. (Get scoop on that tragic twist here.)

The episode paved the way for the departure of Dominique McElligott’s Queen Maeve, who destroyed the nerve agent that Frenchie had concocted to take out Soldier Boy. She was adamant that Homelander needed to die, and Soldier Boy was the only one capable of killing him. So Maeve, Butcher and Soldier Boy went to confront Homelander at Vought, where an all-out fight ensued between the four of them after Soldier Boy rejected his son for being weak and needy. During the battle, Soldier Boy struck and wounded Ryan, whom Homelander had brought out to try to appeal to Soldier Boy as a multi-generational family. Homelander rushed to his son’s side, while Butcher turned on Soldier Boy.

The Boys Season 3 Finale RecapMaeve, meanwhile, took the opportunity to finally get revenge on the man who had locked her up, starting a fight with Homelander. Things escalated — he poked her eye out, she stabbed him in the ear with a pencil — until everyone took notice that Soldier Boy was about to blast them all to death. Upon seeing Annie’s pleading face, Maeve muttered “s–t” to herself, punched Homelander one last time and then jumped out the tower’s window with Soldier Boy, sacrificing her chance to kill Homelander. A fiery bomb then exploded in the sky.

News footage extolled Brave Maeve’s death — but it was all a fake-out! Annie later visited Maeve, who was sporting an eye patch… and no powers, thanks to Soldier Boy. With her girlfriend Elena by her side, Maeve revealed that they were going somewhere Homelander won’t find her. (The odds of that happening are better now that Ashley finally did something good and deleted the footage of The Boys rescuing a very-much-alive Maeve.)

“The first time your prissy ass showed up at the tower, crying in the bathroom, you saved me,” Maeve confessed to Annie. “The truth is you don’t need me anymore. I could jump. You can f–king fly.” (Did we mention that Annie levitated during the battle with Soldier Boy?)

The Boys Maeve Leaves

Although Maeve dies in the comic books on which the show is based, and this season seemed to be hinting at a similar tragic fate for the character, “at no point did I ever consider killing Maeve, from the very, very beginning [of the series],” showrunner Eric Kripke tells TVLine. “We were intentionally building to a happy ending for her, always, for a lot of reasons. One, she deserved it. Believe it or not, The Boys is a moral universe, and when you make the right choices, you get rewarded, and she deserved a happy ending with Elena.”

Kripke was also cognizant of the problematic implications that the death of Maeve, a bisexual character, would have. “I am not going to fall into the trope of killing off gay characters,” he says, referring to the Bury Your Gays trope for which shows such as The 100, Killing Eve and Buffy the Vampire Slayer have been criticized.

“I’m aware of it, [and] I agree with the criticism of it. I’m not going to do that as well,” Kripke says. “And I’ll admit that I think we’re playing around a little with that trope by letting people think she’s dead, and they’re going to shout at their TV and be really upset by it, but then [we] reveal she’s actually going to go have a nice, power-free life with her girlfriend. So hopefully that will take the sting off it.”

While Maeve survived the season, “it was time” to let the character move on, Kripke adds.

“A lot of the big story is Annie finally stepping up and emerging as the hero she needs to be, and in classic [story] structure, it’s time for her mentor and protector to go and let her stand on her own two feet,” Kripke explains.

But given that Maeve is indeed alive and well (for the most part), the opportunity remains for her to one day return. “[Maeve and Dominique are] going to definitely take a break… but the series will definitely not end without seeing Maeve again,” Kripke says.

The Boys fans, what did you think of how Maeve’s story wrapped up? Grade the finale, then hit the comments!