For years now, fans of Dynamite Entertainment's The Boys have been simultaneously anticipating and dreading the inevitable conversation between Wee Hughie and his girlfriend Annie January, who is secretly the superheroine Starlight. We knew it was going to be brutal, we knew it was going to be absolutely devastating to their relationship...but like a car accident taking place right in front of you, you can't help but see what happens.
In part four of the "Believe" storyline, everything officially hits the fan as Hughie tells Annie that he knows the unpleasant details of how Annie joined the elite superhero group The Seven. Despite all the seriously twisted sexual and violent ideas involving superheroes from writer Garth Ennis, he's made Hughie and Annie's relationship the heart and soul of The Boys. They're the two characters in all of this insanity that you're rooting for, perhaps even moreso after this issue.
Hughie's boss, Billy Butcher, is certainly no help, as he continues to manipulate Hughie's hurt feelings in order to keep Hughie focused on The Boys' campaign against superheroes. Butcher preys on Hughie's raw insecurities, telling him how "damaged" and "mental" Annie must truly be to hide the truth of how she joined The Seven. The real tragedy of the whole thing, of course, is that Hughie and Annie genuinely love one another, but it remains to be seen if Hughie will be able to put this painful knowledge behind him.
He'd better do it pretty quick, though, because the corrupt Superman-like Homelander is gathering other superheroes for his own as-yet-unrevealed masterplan. The Homelander apparently feels nothing for regular humanity anymore, as shown by his casual and indifferent killing of a family of four by simply dropping their car through a set of clouds high above. The scene is very cold and deliberate by Ennis, helping to set the stage for what promises to be the ultimate confrontation between The Boys and the Homelander's cadre of superheroes...and I'll go out on a limb here and say that not all of them are going to survive it.