In The Boys season 3, the mega-powerful character of Soldier Boy is introduced, played by the former Supernatural star Jensen Ackles.
It is established in the early parts of the season that Soldier Boy was basically the previous version of Homelander and his group, Payback, a version of The Seven.
This all ended one fine day in Nicaragua when the Russians abducted Soldier Boy and Payback never remained the same.
Although it felt as if the Russians had defeated him with some weapon at first, there was a lot more to the incident. Let’s dissect what led to the downfall of the former Vought poster boy.
Incident in Nicaragua
Payback was said to be at the apex of the supe community in the 1980s, until the incident in Nicaragua in 1984 which saw the last of Soldier Boy.
Vought had made a deal with the government to test out their supes as part of the military, despite the frustration of Grace Mallory, who was the head of the military operation at the time.
One of the members of Payback, Swatto, took flight and was noticed by the Russian-back Sandanistas who were joined by Russian operatives.
A chaotic war began, leaving Payback members injured, especially Black Noir, and the Russians successfully kidnapped Soldier Boy. Or at least that’s what Mallory believed happened.
Truth behind Soldier Boy’s abduction
As soon as he was revived, Soldier Boy started looking for his former girlfriend, Crimson Countess. It’s made clear that she betrayed him in 1984.
When Soldier Boy asks her why she did it, she unflinchingly claims all the Payback members absolutely hated him.
Later, when Soldier Boy is about to kill the TNT Twins, they claim that it was actually Black Noir’s idea, leaving Soldier Boy surprised as the supe wouldn’t lift a finger without the approval of Vought.
In episode 7, more important details come to light through a recreation of the incident by Black Noir’s imaginary cartoon friends and Mindstorm’s confession to Soldier Boy.
Black Noir was physically abused by Soldier Boy when he tried getting an acting role. The Payback leader despised anybody else getting any attention.
During the Nicaragua operation, Stan Edgar ordered Black Noir to gather his team members and attack Soldier Boy. He responded that everybody except Gunpowder would accept.
Payback then fought Soldier Boy, who was singlehandedly overpowering them, even beating Black Noir into a critical state. Only with the power of Mindstorm were they able to subdue him and hand him over to the Russians.
When asked the reason for the betrayal, Edgar revealed that Vought had created a child super who they believed would turn out even stronger than Soldier Boy. Thus, he needed to be eliminated or he wouldn’t let anybody else get his share of attention.
Soldier Boy is actually Homelander’s father
When the details are divulged to Soldier Boy by Mindstorm, he is left in visible shock, having realised something significant.
He calls Homelander at Vought directly. In 1980 fall, he was asked to be part of a genetic experiment and donated a sample of his semen.
In 1981 spring, Homelander was born. Soldier Boy is the father of The Seven’s leader. He was created through experimentation on Soldier Boy’s genes.
Soldier Boy finds this move by Vought quite ironic, as he claims he would have had no trouble in letting his own son take all the attention. This sets up a grand finale with a team-up, or further betrayal, on the cards.