Eight Years Ago
At the Vought Christmas party, the Soups mingle with the employees. Billy approaches Becca, who works there as the senior director marketing, and she says that she just has to shake a few more hands and then they can leave. Homelander greets Becca and she introduces Billy. The Supe thanks Becca for taking over his Twitter account, and Billy points out that it's a little dishonest. Homelander admits that it is but he's lousy at social media. He asks to talk to Becca later about managing the rest of his social marketing and then joins Maeve.
Billy watches from his car as Hughie and Annie check into a hotel. Once they're alone, they make love and Annie's eyes flare as she orgasms. Afterward, they lie in bed together and Annie points out that Hughie didn't take her to his house. She points out that Hughie is a mystery to her, and says that her dad left her and her mother without any money. Annie wonders if the hotel is a nice thing and not a red-flag thing, and Hughie says that he quit his job after Robin's death because it seemed pointless. He assures her that everything is all right.
The next day, Homelander reviews the photos of the Boys that Mesmer gave him. He remembers Billy from eight years ago and realizes that he's the same man he saw at the race track.
The Deep arrives at his new assignment in Sandusky, Ohio, and the manager Jeff shows him his hotel room. Jeff says that having a Supe in Sandusky is thrilling and talks about the local attractions. The Deep is impressed that there's a local Dairy Queen, and wants to go out and fight crime. Jeff says that there isn't much crime in Sandusky but if something comes up, they'll call him. Depressed, the Deep walks around his room and tries to write his memoir.
At the race track, A-Train throws up because of the constant sprints. Nathan tells him to keep at it because the V is killing him. He says that A-Train is done with the commercial spots and he has to train. A-Train figures that he'll be a freak show, and his brother tells him that at least he'll be breathing. He's summoned to the Tower board room with the others, and Homelander says that he summoned them. Homelander tells his teammates that it's time for some tough love, and notes that lately A-Train, Starlight, and Maeve have been erratic and sloppy. He says that they have to keep their eyes on the ball and now he knows why.
Homelander brings up a photo of Hughie and explains that he and Starlight are going steady. Hughie is also one of the guys who killed Translucent and blackmailed Ezekiel, Popclaw, and Mesmer. Starlight doesn't believe it, asking why Hughie would do it, and Homelander expands the photo to show it's from when Hughie came to the Tower and signed the NDA with A-Train. A-Train remembers seeing Hughie outside of Popclaw's place, and Homelander suggests that Starlight has been helping Hughie by helping him to see Ezekiel and getting rid of the Deep.
When Starlight gets up to protest, Homelander tells her to sit down and threatens her with his laser vision. Once she does, Homelander points out that they've lost two members since Starlight joined and wonders who's next. When she protests, Homelander tells her to shut her mouth and asks what she would do in his position. Maeve interjects, saying that Starlight didn't know. She figures that she fell for Hughie and he's pumping Starlight for information. Homelander tells Starlight that she must be something special for Maeve caring about her, and asks her what she'll do if he says no. Maeve tells him that she's got it and that it's the two of them, and Homelander backs off and dismisses the others.
Kimiko is making food for the others with Frenchie giving her advice. Hughie comes in and Kimiko "asks" where he was. Billy wants to know as well, and Hughie asks to talk to him privately. When Billy refuses to do so, Hughie says to the room that he doesn't think he can do it anymore. He tells them that what they're doing is awful and they have to stop. Billy tells him that he's a killer like the rest of them, and tells him to tell everyone what it's really all about. Hughie says that it's about Annie, and Billy mock-applauds and says that Hughie has been sneaking off to have sex with Annie. He says that Annie is playing him, and Hughie asks how it's working out to be loyal to a dead woman.
As Billy glares at Hughie, A-Train calls from Hugh's phone and puts Hugh briefly on the phone. The speedster tells Hughie that Hugh is fine, and the others realize that if Hughie is burned then they all are. A-Train tells Hughie to get to his house alone in 20 minutes or he'll kill Hugh just like Robin. The others confirm that they've been burned, and Billy tells Hughie that he's going to kill Annie whether she's responsible or not. Milk points out that Annie never saw him so he couldn't have been burned by her, and Billy realizes that Mesmer turned them in. Hughie thanks Milk for stepping in, and Milk tells him that it wasn't smart sleeping with Annie.
Hughie arrives at the house and Hugh says that A-Train is acting strange. A-Train speeds in with Hughie's Seven collectibles, and realizes that he was a super-fan. He confirms that Hughie came alone and Hughie holds up a syringe of V. Hughie reveals that it's a fake but says that he has a real dose hidden outside, and if A-Train lets Hugh go then Hughie will take the speedster to it. A-Train agrees but says that if Hughie tries anything then he'll catch up to Hugh no matter where he goes. Hugh refuses to go, but Hughie insists that he's got it.
Once Hugh leaves, A-Train insists that killing Robin was an accident and asks where the V is. He says that Popclaw is gone and Hughie put her in danger and then threw her out so he had to kill her. A-Train insists that he made a mistake while Hughie killed on purpose. Kimiko slips in and breaks A-Train's leg, and Hughie walks away.
Milk goes to his home and tells Monique that it's not safe there anymore. She's furious that he's back with Billy. Their child Janine comes down and Milk hugs her. Janine gives him a drawing she made and Monique says that they're going on a sleepover so she should pack her toys. Milk warns them that there's no time.
Madelyn is in her office on the phone negotiating the Army bill. Homelander is with her and asks her if she remembers Becca from eight years ago. She vaguely does, and Homelander says that Becca is missing presumed dead. Her husband Billy got riled up, and Homelander wonders if Madelyn knows what happened to Becca. Madelyn figures that she quit, and wonders why Homelander is asking questions about her. She suggests that the two of them order in and catch up, and Homelander says that he has other business and leaves.
The Deep returns to his hotel room with a fan girl, Molly. They start kissing and undressing, and Molly wants to see him naked. He warns that he doesn't look like everyone else, and Molly tells him that she's counting on it. The Deep undresses revealing his gills, and Molly starts fondling them and inserts a finger. He tells her to stop because it hurts, and she calls him a freak and orders him to lie back. Molly drives her fingers into his gills and the Deep moans in pain.
At Penn, Mesmer is heading for a train and sees Billy ahead. Billy comes at him and Mesmer runs. He ducks into a restroom and hides in a stall, sitting on the toilet. Billy finds him, yanks him out, and says that he bugged him earlier so he could find him. He punches Mesmer, who "reads" his memories of Becca and then finding her gone. Mesmer offers to help find Becca, and Billy puts his hands on Mesmer's head. The Supe gasps in shock, and Billy slams his head repeatedly into a sink. Once Mesmer passes out, Billy looks at himself in the mirror.
Grace Mallory comes to see Billy and shows him Vought security footage of Becca meeting with Homelander. Becca was alone with him for three hours off-camera, and afterward a disheveled Becca emerged from the room they went into. A few days later, Becca went missing and Mallory figures that Homelander was involved. She says that Billy wouldn't believe what the Supes get up to, and explains that she's with the CIA and can get Billy payback.
Hughie calls Starlight, who ignores him. Maeve asks Starlight who is calling, and Starlight says that it's nobody. The older heroine says that if Starlight wants to talk she's there. Starlight isn't interested and asks her to pour her a drink. Maeve says that she had someone once and they were going to get away and start a family. She explains that the Supes' special weakness is the same as anyone's: people that they care about. She advises Starlight to cut them loose for her good and theirs.
The Deep goes shopping and looks at the frozen fish in the meat section. He talks to some lobsters and promises to get one out, and asks the counterman to get him one. The counterman takes the lobster out and cuts him open before the Deep can stop him.
The Boys hide Hugh, Monique, and Janine. Cherie hangs up on Frenchie, and Hughie tries to reach Starlight without success. Billy comes in and introduces himself to Hugh, complimenting him on Hughie. When he tells Janine to call him "Uncle Billy", Monique says that Billy is nothing to her and slaps him. Billy shrugs it off, and Hughie apologizes to Hugh about everything. Hugh says that he's standing up for himself and has nothing to apologize for.
Milk confronts Billy and says that Susan is interested but didn't bring Billy Homelander so he threw the whole deal away. Billy denies it but Milk figures that he's lying. He reminds Billy that he said things would be different, but this time it will be his family instead of Mallory's. Milk asks Billy to call Susan.
Dr. Vogelman is tending to his dogs at his manor when Homelander arrives. The doctor says that he's breeding the dogs and doesn't get too close to his subjects. Homelander asks about Vought, and Vogelman figures that Homelander wants to know about Becca and invites the Supe to just ask him. They go inside and Vogelman says that Madelyn called him. Becca had come to her pregnant with Homelander's child. It was supposedly impossible, but the fetus was developing unnaturally fast. They had Becca sign a NDA in return for medical treatment. The baby ripped out of Becca and then drowned in her blood. Vogelman didn't tell Homelander to protect him and Vought, and explains that when he raises purebreds without mothers, they become hateful and violent. He says that Homelander should have been raised with a family that loved him, and apologizes to Homelander for what he's become.
Homelander wonders if Vogelman wants forgiveness, and tells him that it's too little too late. Vogelman says that he doesn't want anything from Homelander and is just thinking about his mistakes. Homelander insists that he's the world's greatest superhero, and Vogelman says that he's his greatest failure.
Hughie continues trying to reach Annie without success. Cars pull up outside, and Billy ushers Susan and her men in. Susan assures Milk that his family will be okay, and he realizes that Billy called after all. Monique tells Milk that she never wants to see him again, and Milk hugs Janine and tells her that she'll be safe with Monique. Hugh hugs Hughie and goes with the agents, and Susan asks Billy for the V. She admits that she won't be able to give him Homelander but the others are fair game. After a moment Billy hands over the V sample and Susan leaves.
Annie calls Hughie back and he steps away to take the call. She says that she has to see him and he has to explain.
Later, Susan tells Madelyn that she knows about V. Madelyn claims that she knows nothing about Kimiko, and notes that the bill about Supes in the Armed Forces is dead. If Madelyn refuses then everything goes public and the company will go bankrupt from the lawsuits and Madelyn goes to prison. A message comes in for Susan, who goes to the control room. An aide tells her that Navy SEALS executed a raid in the Middle East, but one of the terrorists, Naqib, steps out and emits a burst of energy that kills the SEALS and destroys the building. Unharmed, Naqib walks out of the burning building and they figure that he's a Supe.
Hughie meets Annie in Central Park and she asks if he killed Translucent and used her to get back at A-Train. When Hughie doesn't say anything, Annie realizes that it's all true and insists that there was another way than murder. She tells Hughie that she's taking him in to the police, telling him that she was the only thing she could count on. Hughie insists that she knows him and says that he'll be dead. He explains about V and how Vought will do anything to cover it up. Annie says that they're born with powers, and then Billy shoots her in the chest. Billy yells at Hughie to run and shoots Annie again. Hughie mutters an apology to Annie and runs off with Billy.
Written by Gadfly on Aug 11, 2019