This article contains spoilers for Gen V Episodes 1 – 3.
It’s completely understandable if you’re having trouble remembering what happened in the first three episodes of Gen V, the teen-set spin-off of superhero satire The Boys. After watching Emma aka Little Cricket (Lizzie Broadway) using her powers to appease a partner’s fantasies, everything else kind of falls away.
But like its parent series, Gen V has a lot more going on than just shocking sex and violence. By focusing on the next generation of Supes, the teens who received powers after being injected with Compound V as children, Gen V adds a layer of soapy drama to the social satire and superhero action.
When Does Gen V Episode 4 Premiere?
The fourth episode of Gen V comes to Amazon Prime Streaming on October 6, 2023. Unlike the first three episodes, which dropped at the same time, episode 4 will stand alone, as will the remaining entries in the series.
Gen V Episodes 1-3 Recap
Gen V introduced readers to Godolkin University School of Crimefighting, where the best and brightest young Supes go to gain their powers. We meet the school via Marie (Jaz Sinclair, lately of Chilling Adventures of Sabrina), a young woman with the gnarly ability to control blood — her own or those of someone else. Orphaned after accidentally killing her parents when her powers manifested, Moreau experiences huge culture shock, especially when she skyrockets to the top of the projections among Gen V students.
Marie rooms with Emma Meyer (Broadway) aka Little Cricket, an excitable Supe with the ability to shrink — after forcing herself to vomit, that is. Although she plans to be in performing arts instead of crime-fighting, Emma gets involved in an adventure to investigate a secret site called the Woods.
Driving Emma to the investigation is Andre (Chance Perdomo), the son of a popular Supe called Polarity (Sean Patrick Thomas) who shares his father’s magnetic manipulation abilities. Thanks to his father’s campaigning and his own natural charisma, Andre has an opportunity to join the Seven and surpass even his father’s achievements. That expectation weighs heavily on Andre, especially after seeing the downfall of his best friend Luke Riordan (Patrick Schwarzenegger) aka Golden Boy.
The top-rated prospect at Godolkin, Golden Boy catches on fire and has super-strength and near-invulnerability. Between that amazing strength and his striking good looks, Golden Boy is the star pupil of Godolkin’s most respected professor, Brinkhoff (Clancy Brown). However, at the end of episode one, Luke kills Brinkhoff and goes on a rampage at the school. After being detained by Marie, Andre, and Brinkhoff’s apprentice Jordan Li (Derek Luh/London Thor), Luke flies into the air and commits suicide.
Sensing an opportunity to capitalize on potential bad press, Voight and Godolkin reframe the narrative as one of heroism on the part of Marie, launching her into the number two ranking slot, just below Andre in the now vacated number one position.
That narrative angers Li, who knows what really happened and resents Marie for playing along with the lie. Li has the ability to change genders, gaining different powers according to the gender they present. While very comfortable blurring the line between male and female, Li knows that their abilities make them a hard sell for Voight. To Jordan, Marie’s sudden advancement is a reminder of the limitations put upon them.
The other witness to Luke’s immolation is his girlfriend Cate (Maddie Phillips). Initially introduced as a typical mean girl with a power to suit — she can make anyone follow her commands if she touches their skin — Cate soon reveals layers of depth. She knows about Luke’s lost brother Sam (Alexander Calvert) and grows close to Andre as they both deal with Luke’s death and investigate his breakdown. Cate has her own tragic relationship with a brother, as she once used her powers to tell her brother to leave forever, essentially killing him.
What is in The Woods?
As they look into the cause of Luke’s breakdown, the teens of Gen V learn about The Woods, a secret facility located under Godolkin. Voight uses the Woods to detain Supes it considers too unruly for them to capitalize upon. Under the direction of Dr. Edison Cardosa (Marco Pigossi), and with the complete knowledge of Godolkin president Indira Shetty (Shelley Conn, Good Omens), Voight performs tests on young Supes in the Woods, refusing to let their investments go to waste.
The most fruitful subject of the Woods is Sam, who may have powers even greater than that of his brother Luke. However, the same Compound V that gave Sam his powers also gave him extreme mental disorders, rendering him too dangerous to be a sanctioned Supe on any level. As a result, Voight faked Sam’s death and took him away to The Woods, where they can continue to experiment upon him.
Three episodes in, the secret of The Woods seems to be the primary mystery of Gen V. The third episode ends with Emma, recruited by Andre, sneaking into Sam’s cell. After initially thinking that she’s just a projection of his imagination, Sam accepts Emma as a real person come to help him. When a guard arrives, Emma protects her new friend in the most disgusting way possible, sliding into his ear and burrowing through his brain.
To be sure, that’s only the start of the gross-out gags and thought-provoking social commentary we’ve come to expect from The Boys and Gen V.