The Boys Season 4 Episode 3 recap: Vought on Ice

Daisy Phillipson
Still from The Boys Season 4

The Boys Season 4 Episode 3, ‘We’ll Keep the Red Flag Flying’, sees Homelander and Sage hatching a plan, the gang out on their own quests, and a Vought on Ice rehearsal that turns into a bloody nightmare. 

The first three episodes of The Boys Season 4 have finally landed, and there’s a lot going on, with new supes, a fragmented gang, and political allegiances (and divisions) being made. 

The Boys Season 4 Episode 2 saw a major celebrity cameo, while Homelander brought on Sister Sage to take control of the narrative. Oh, and Billy Butcher and co. crashed a conspiracy event called ‘Truthcon’. 

There’s plenty more where that came from in the third episode. So, here’s everything that happens in The Boys Season 4 Episode 3. Warning: Spoilers ahead! 

Pledge an allegiance

Still from The Boys Season 4

Homelander’s gone full Trump, standing on a star-spangled stage as a group of choir boys sings to an adoring crowd of Hometeamers. Among the crowd is a smaller group of Starlighters, who have been cordoned off to prevent chaos (like we saw in The Boys Season 4 Episode 1). 

Playing up to Sister Sage’s plan, Homelander gets the crowd riled up, telling his supporters the Starlighters “want to get rid of superheroes… and replace them with some godless, non-binary socialists like them.”

He tells them The Seven are going to stop that from happening, paving the way for the supes to take to the stage. You’ve got the OGs, Deep, A-Train, and Black Noir (2.0, the public doesn’t know Homelander murdered him yet). He then welcomes two new members: Firecracker and Sage. He lets the crowd know he might be saving the final spot for his son Ryan. 

Meanwhile, Butcher and Joe Kessler are hatching up a plan to drug Ryan and convince him to come home. But Butcher makes it clear that he just wants to get Ryan’s head clear, and isn’t planning on training him up to topple Homelander, although Kessler seems like he has other ideas. 

Following the event, The Seven are giving a press conference at Vought HQ, where Firecracker’s peddling her usual conspiracy spiel, claiming the “vaccines they’re giving out at Starlight House actually cause autism” amid a push to Make America Super Again.

On the sidelines, Homelander questions why Sage brought Firecracker in to join the team. She insists they “need her” now that Annie is back leading the Starlighters. 

At Starlight House, Annie’s connected Hughie with their lawyer about his mom Daphne having power of attorney over his father, Hugh. Unfortunately, there’s nothing much he can do, as his dad is still unconscious after suffering a stroke. Frenchie rocks up, asking Colin for a chat. 

In what is evidently a parody of the Pizzagate incident, a random Hometeamer shows up demanding to see the “kids in the basement… what are you selling, cheese pizza?”

He believes the conspiracy theory that Starlight House is actually a base for a child trafficking ring. When the lawyer insists there’s no basement, he pulls out a gun. Frenchie intercepts and beats the guy to the ground. 

In the bathroom, Colin cleans up Frenchie’s wounds and goes to kiss him after their hook-up. But Frenchie, feeling guilty after realizing he was the hitman who killed Colin’s family, tries to turn him down. But he can’t deny his feelings, and they share a kiss. 

We cut to Robert Singer’s office, where he proposes to Victoria Neuman that they make the legislative agenda ‘The Superhero Management Act’ stricter by banning supes from the military, private policing, and government positions. 

Here’s the deal: Singer secretly wants his running mate dead, while Neuman is in Vought’s back pockets, so there’s a lot bubbling away under the surface. She tries to talk him round, but Singer insists supes should be nothing more than entertainers. 

Over at The Boys’ HQ, Kimiko, who’s still trying to grapple with her dark past, tells Frenchie that she’s found a Shining Light cell nearby.

“The therapist was right, I need to face my past,” she tells him. “So I’m going to kill them all.” Very healthy indeed. Frenchie’s reluctant but he agrees to help her. 

Speaking to the rest of the gang, Mother’s Milk shares his concerns about Firecracker and Sage, wondering why they of all people would be chosen to join The Seven.

He thinks something’s up, saying he wants to flip A-Train over to their side as an informant. It’s a hard no from Annie, but MM gives a harder no to Hughie’s idea: bringing Butcher back. 

A hunt for the leak

Still from The Boys Season 4

After Butcher manages to speak to Ryan via a ridiculously violent Vought game, telling him to “think about it,” we cut to Vought HQ where The Seven are holding a meeting.

Ashley gets booted out, with Homelander saying that Sage is taking over as CEO. But Sage reassures her in the worst way possible that she’s not getting fired; they still need a figurehead, like “Ronald McDonald.”

The meeting gets started (once they’ve woken up Black Noir 2.0, who happens to be a narcoleptic), with Sage revealing that surveillance footage proving the alibi of the wrongly accused Starlighters was stolen from Vought’s Crime Analytics department and shared with Hughie and Annie. 

While we as the viewers know it was A-Train, they have no idea, initially thinking it’s Deep as that’s his department. When they realize he’s not the sharpest tool in the shed, Sage demands a list of all Vought employees who have access to Crime Analytics and that Deep be removed from the position. 

When he gets home, Deep’s octopus lover tries to get through to him and find out what’s wrong, but he’s reluctant to talk, still keeping her locked away in a tank in his cupboard. Meanwhile, Ashley’s screwing, taking out her anger on her latest sub: Cameron Coleman.

At his place, Butcher’s enjoying a spot of cooking, but it’s not exactly wholesome — he’s making a batch of drug-filled cookies for when Ryan comes over. Only issue? Ryan’s not hungry. After a short heart-to-heart, they decide to play a game of fussball. 

MM has other plans in store, paying A-Train a visit. He’s not willing to talk until MM reveals he’s got evidence of him sharing the leak. But he’s not sure he even needs to blackmail A-Train.

Between the incident that saw his brother Nathan paralyzed to the three Homelanders The Seven were made to murder, the fastest supe on the circuit is starting to get a guilty conscience. 

You’re a mean girl

Still from The Boys Season 4

Kimiko and Frenchie turn up to take on the Shining Light terrorists, only there’s a slight problem: Frenchie’s tripping balls.

Kimiko takes out a group of armed men solo in bloody fashion, while Frenchie watches on from the sidelines; instead of blood, he hallucinates squeaky toys and bubbles emanating from their wounds.

He wanders off to another room where he sees a vision of all the people he killed under Little Nina’s instructions, before seeing Little Nina herself, who tells him he only has himself to blame.

Kimiko’s past also catches up with her, as she sees a woman she recognizes and vice-versa. The pair fight before the woman runs away. 

At Butcher’s, Ryan admits to accidentally killing Koi. “I get why you didn’t want me,” he says. “I wouldn’t want me either.”

But Butcher reassures him that he didn’t mean those things he said in Season 3, and he doesn’t blame him for Becca’s death. Butcher, realizing he wants to do the right thing, throws the cookies in the bin and invites Ryan to another game. 

In the following scene, Homelander and Sage are grilling Vought employees over the leak, starting with poor Anika. They promise nothing bad will happen if she tells the truth. However, as soon as she says Starlight gave her a call, Homelander lasers her right through the head.

She didn’t even get to finish her sentence. Ashley watches on in horror, realizing she could be next on the chopping block. 

Firecracker heads to her office, where she finds Starlight, who wants to know why she’s rallying such a strong campaign of hate against her.

Although Starlight doesn’t initially remember her, she’s soon reminded when Firecracker discusses their past in the pageant circuit together as teens. And Starlight was a mean girl.

Firecracker recalls one competition in which they were the two finalists. Starlight had told everyone Firecracker had a “gangbang with the judges,” and that it was “the only way trash like her could make it to the finals.” When Firecracker asked her why at the time, Starlight replied, “I don’t talk to fat sl*ts.”

Although Annie tries to blame it on being “immature and stupid” and apologizes, Firecracker still sees her as a mean girl and a bully. “When I’m done, the rest of the world’s going to see it too,” she says. 

Vought on Ice

Still from The Boys Season 4

The scene cuts to the rehearsal for the next money-making scheme: Vought on Ice. The sequence shows an ice skater dressed as Queen Maeve singing a song about how you’re not allowed to say Merry Christmas anymore before a skating Homelander takes to the rink with some pro-Christian messaging. 

MM and Hughie, dressed as staff members, watch on in disgust. Why are they there? Well, turns out, A-Train cracked. He told them Neuman’s meeting Homelander there shortly. 

Hughie climbs up through the vent system — the plan is to plant a bug and get out of there so they can listen in on the meeting. But they show up early, with Hughie in the vent above Neuman, Homelander, and Sage as they discuss the master plan. 

They say they’re going to destroy Starlight as the “first pebble down the mountain,” and they’ll kill Singer so Neuman can become President.

In return, they want her to disband the Bureau of Superhuman Affairs, condemn the Defund the Supes movement, remove books that teach Critical Supe Theory, and place a supe in every town with legal authority over the police. In other words, create a totalitarian society run by supes. 

Homelander says the final part of the plan will be Neuman coming out as a supe; she’s not convinced, saying the military will send the troops in. But as Homelander gives her a speech about the example she’s setting to her daughter Zoe, a drip of Hughie’s sweat falls from the vent and hits Homelander on the shoulder. 

Hughie makes a run for it (or a crawl, at least) as Homelander starts lasering parts of the vent, their chase backed by the Vought on Ice rehearsal. MM realizes what’s going on, switching up the stage lights to deflect Homelander’s lasers away from Hughie. Sadly, the Queen Maeve skater gets caught in the crosshairs, slicing her in half. 

The hilarious gore continues when the skaters scramble over each other to get away, with a fake Jesus speeding past a fallen Starlight, slicing off her fingers in the process.

Homelander catches up to Hughie, but when he walks out the fire exit, he’s nowhere to be found. Homelander flies off in a rage, before we find out Hughie was saved by A-Train. 

Frenchie, Kimiko, and Starlight drown their sorrows at The Boys’ HQ, with Frenchie sharing some dark tales from his childhood. He tells Kimiko that they can’t solve each other’s problems before walking off to get high. 

Hughie heads into the hospital, with a news segment on a nearby TV pinning the Vought on Ice incident on an “electrical fire.” After the day he’s had, he’s too tired to fight with his mom.

Instead, he asks her why, or how, she could leave him as a kid. She explains that she had debilitating postpartum depression that never went away. After attempting to take her own life, she decided to leave the family behind. 

Back at Butcher’s, Kessler is pissed at him for not drugging Ryan. He insists that they need to train Ryan up or else the world’s going to end. “Either we figure out how to train him or we figure out how to kill him,” he says. 

Meanwhile, Deep visits Sage, who doesn’t quite seem like herself: she’s eating junk food and watching reality TV.

Although he’s angry at her for getting him booted off the Crime Analytics department, he gets distracted by her food. They decide to watch Transformers 2 together before they start making out, but when the camera pans out, we see a lobotomy tool on her table with fresh blood on the end of it. 

When Ryan gets home, Homelander’s there waiting for him. He tries to lie but his dad can smell Butcher on him. He wants to know why Ryan’s going behind his back, asking, “Why am I not good enough for you?” Homelander throws a statue at a mirror, scaring Ryan away. 

Still from The Boys Season 4

Homelander puts his head in his hands, only to hear his own voice calling him over to the mirror. Homelander sees four versions of himself in the reflection, all of them different facets of his personality. Initially, the good cop, bad cop Homelanders have a back-and-forth, until the dominant one takes control of the conversation. 

“It’s time to overcome this sickness, once and for all,” he says. “You’re never going to be yourself until you transcend your humanity.” When he asks what he needs to do, they reply in unison, “You need to go back to the start… you need to go home.”

The Boys Season 4 Episodes 1-4 are available to stream on Prime Video now. You can read our full recap on Episode 4, and find out when the next episode’s out with our Season 4 release schedule guide.

Why not also take a look at how the Gen V timeline ties in, what the Season 4 theories are saying, and whether Soldier Boy will return. You can also find more TV shows streaming this month, as well as the best TV shows of 2024 so far.

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