WARNING: Spoilers ahead for The Boys season 3, episode 6
The Boys imagines all the people that thought 2020’s viral video was a good idea and mercilessly mocks them in season 3’s greatest parody. As you’ll no doubt be aware, 2020 wasn’t a banner year in human history. As lockdowns loomed and times got tough, a group of Hollywood celebrities banded together and recorded a painfully bad cover version of John Lennon’s “Imagine” to lift morale… or something. Featuring major names such as Gal Gadot, Kristen Wiig, Will Ferrell, Mark Ruffalo and Natalie Portman, the video was widely panned not just for the iffy performances, but for the patronizing attitude that celebrities can somehow make everything better.
Eric Kripke apparently watched this video rubbing his hands with glee, as The Boys season 3’s “Herogasm” festivities kick off with a wonderful parody of the infamous video from Gadot et al. Introduced by The Deep, the “Imagine” skit boasts game cameos from Ashton Kutcher, Mila Kunis, Kumail Nanjiani, Rose Byrne, Elizabeth Banks, and many more. Needless to say, the sketch is hilarious. The Boys completely nails its target with deadpan delivery, and begins Herogasm on the most perfect of satirical notes. The Deep’s “Imagine” video may be totally disconnected from The Boys‘ main plot but, in many ways, it’s the best parody of the season thus far.
Whether The Boys is parodying the DCEU or making a serious commentary on racism, it typically does so through an overblown superhero lens. A great example from season 3 is Brave Maeve’s Inclusive Kingdom, with its “Systematically Oppressed Tacos” and “BLM BLTs.” The rainbow-covered Vought theme park is a totally over-the-top riff on how major corporations exploit diversity as a marketing tactic without fostering actual diversity behind the scenes. Episode 6’s “Imagine” video stands apart because the parody is exactly what happened in real life. Without a hint of hyperbole or exaggeration, The Boys recreates the 2020 cringe-athon with the same song, the same message, and the same level of A-list celebs, then metaphorically stands back after lighting the fuse. The sheer directness of The Boys‘ “Imagine” scene elevates it above any other parody in season 3 – and that’s no mean feat.
Imagine 2.0 also succeeds by virtue of the people involved. It’s no accident that The Deep – a supe renowned for his total lack of self-awareness – acts as the instigator. The Boys is saying exactly what it thinks without needing to say anything at all, and the celebrities themselves are just as crucial in that, with The Boys‘ “Imagine” attracting names just as big as the original. The Boys‘ approach to celebrity cameos might be “whoever in Seth Rogen’s contact list bothers to reply,” but the fact everyone involved agreed to parody their fellow Hollywood celebrities makes the scene more than a little sweeter.
Reality has become so much stranger than fiction across the past two years. With a global pandemic, the shocking January 6 Capitol riots, increasingly brazen examples of political corruption, and a surge in Neo-fascism (which The Boys also deals with), parodying anything has become remarkably difficult. Even just within the entertainment industry, who’d have predicted Amazon’s MGM purchase, or Spider-Man: No Way Home? With its “Imagine” joke, The Boys realizes the best parodies are sometimes the real thing.
The Boys continues Friday on Prime Video.
Go to Source
Author: Craig Elvy