The Boys fans slam Eric Kripke for ‘hypocritical’ Hughie scene

Daisy Phillipson
Hughie in The Boys

Following the release of The Boys Season 4 Episode 6, creator Eric Kripke is facing backlash over comments about Hughie’s ordeal, with some calling him “hypocritical.” 

Given the latest episode focuses on Tek Knight, aka The Boys’ perverted version of Batman, it’s no surprise that some messed up moments go down. Before we get into it, be warned that there are spoilers for Episode 6 ahead and some may find this content distressing…

In the latest installment, Hughie is made to wear Webweaver’s stinky supe suit in order to infiltrate Tek’s Federalist Society party at his estate and find out what he’s been plotting with Sister Sage

However, we soon learn that Tek has plans to make Webweaver his “sidekick” (essentially his sex slave).

Not wanting to reveal his identity, Tek takes Hughie (still dressed as Webweaver) down to his sex dungeon – known as the Tek Cave – and, alongside Ashley, proceeds to subject him to all manner of heinous acts. 

Tek Knight and Hughie in The Boys
Hughie, dressed up as Webweaver, gets assaulted by Tek

Given Tek was Hughie’s favorite supe growing up, you could say the scene mirrors Starlight being sexually assaulted by her own hero, The Deep, in Season 1. Kripke’s response to both incidents is what’s drawing criticism from The Boys fans. 

Back in 2021, Kripke spoke about the challenges of creating the scene in which Deep sexually assaults Starlight, saying (via ScreenRant): “I wanted to get it right. 

“I had a lot of conversations with a lot of women, some of which were very painful. And I did my absolute best to get the f*ck out of the way, and just let them speak, and not try to steer it one way or another.”

He added, “I’ll say this: I’ve never worked so hard or stressed so much about a scene in my life before or since. Because if I got that wrong, it’s not just that it would fail as a scene, it would be hurtful. And I felt that pressure and responsibility all throughout.”

In a new interview with Variety shared following the release of The Boys Season 4’s sixth episode, the showrunner was asked about the decision to kick Hughie “when he’s down by having him sexually assaulted by his childhood hero after his dad just died.”

Kripke replied, “Well, that’s a dark way to look at it! We view it as hilarious. 

“Obviously, Tek Knight is our version of Batman, and we wanted to really play around with that trope: Batman’s fascist underpinnings as a really wealthy dude who hunts poor people, and then profits off the incarceration.”

After these quotes were shared side-by-side on the show’s subreddit, Kripke is facing criticism from the fandom for how differently these two instances were perceived and handled. 

“I was kind of hoping the quote was taken out of context but nope, he fully meant for the Hughie scene to be a joke,” said one. 

“It’s actually worse, the way he talked about Hughie’s breakdown made it seem it was mostly just about his dad and had nothing, or at least not too much to do with Tek Knight and Ashley. So the one supposedly tactful thing about that story arc wasn’t even there.”

The Deep and Starlight in The Boys
The Deep assaulted Starlight in Season 1

“That’s f*cked up. None of that was funny,” said another, while a third added, “He’s just proving his own writing right by making himself a hypocritical TV show writer.”

A fourth chimed in, “One thing I learned over time is that when someone shows you who they really are you should believe it. Kripke’s hypocrisy is truly disappointing,” while a fifth described the Hughie response as “tone deaf.”

A separate thread requested for Hughie to be given a break, given he’s only just experienced the death of his father, Hugh. 

When one fan shared Kripke’s response, another replied, “This makes me feel vindicated about all those comments claiming the scenes weren’t meant to be comedic.”

But a third said, “Even if it was intended to be serious and uncomfortable, the delivery and execution is completely f*cking wrong. It’s a failure no matter how you look at it.”

“The depravity and callousness regarding the sexual exploitation of men this season was so unnecessary,” added another.

The Boys Season 4 Episodes 1-6 are streaming on Amazon Prime Video now. You can find out when the next episode drops with our guide to The Boys Season 4’s release schedule

We’ve also got guides on The Boys Season 4’s most shocking moments so farwhether Kimiko dies, and how the Gen V timeline fits in. And keep tabs on new releases with our guide to the TV shows streaming this month.