- Oops!Something went wrong.Please try again later.
Warning: There are major spoilers ahead for season three of Prime Video's "The Boys."
Karl Urban spoke to Insider about Butcher and Lenny's backstory that's explored in episode seven.
Urban said the "heartbreaking" flashbacks show why Butcher's "so inept at being a parental figure."
"Because of COVID, we actually had the scripts well in advance this season," Urban told Insider during a virtual press junket for season three in early June. "It was wonderful because we were really able to plot a trajectory."
Butcher is forced to be a helpless witness to the most painful memories of his past when the supe named Mindstorm (Ryan Blakely) traps him in an endless nightmare.
He watches moments in which his father, Sam (played in flashbacks by Brendan Murray), physically, verbally, and emotionally abused Butcher (Josh Zaharia) and his timid brother Lenny (Bruno Rudolf) as children.
As previously alluded to last season, Sam was a tyrannical father who justified his harsh parenting approach by telling his sons that they'd sink, rather than swim, in the world if they didn't toughen up.
Butcher took the brunt of the abuse to protect his younger brother. But when Butcher (Luca Villacis) left home to attend school elsewhere and escape his father, teen Lenny (Jack Fulton) was left defenseless.
The flashbacks contextualize Butcher's own darkness and confirm why he's harsh and seemingly uncaring at times. Despite his best efforts at times, Butcher frequently succumbs to the violent nature that he adopted from his father.
This also explains why he struggles to be a proper guardian to Ryan (Cameron Crovetti), the son of Butcher's late wife Becca (Shantel VanSanten) and The Seven leader Homelander (Antony Starr).
"For me, it was really about linking that tragedy of Butcher's childhood to Butcher's interactions with Ryan and coming to understand why he is so inept at being a parental figure, because he just doesn't know; he's never had one," Urban said.
"I enjoyed playing those scenes in the flashback sequence because, for the most part, Butcher was really a passenger in watching this horrific nightmare of his childhood unfold," the actor added.
After being abandoned by Butcher and suffering daily abuse from his dad, teenage Lenny committed suicide. Although Butcher didn't witness Lenny putting the gun in his mouth and pulling the trigger in real life, he sees the moment play out in the nightmare.
"That's the point where Butcher loses it," Urban said. "And it was heartbreaking stuff to play and played so well by those kids. They were amazing."
The flashbacks also confirm why Butcher feels a kinship with Hughie Campbell (Jack Quaid), a tech salesman that he recruited to join the Boys at the start of the series.
Even Hughie admits that, for better or for worse, Butcher is like family to him.
Aside from resembling Lenny, Hughie is similarly nervous in disposition.
That weak nature changes this season when Hughie finds Butcher's stash of temporary compound V, an untested drug that gives the user superpowers for 24 hours.
Hughie becomes addicted to the strength and confidence it gives him, which leads to the manifestation of his own budding toxic masculinity.
For Butcher, Hughie is a constant reminder of Lenny and the guilt he feels over his death. The darkness that begins to take hold of Hughie adds to Butcher's fear that he'll be responsible for Hughie's death at some point.
That worry exponentially increases when Butcher learns at the end of episode seven that V-24 has deadly side effects.
The first seven episodes of season three of "The Boys" are now streaming on Prime Video, with the finale dropping on July 8.
Read the original article on Insider