The Boys season 3's most outlandish episode shocked one of its biggest stars

Jensen Ackles' Soldier Boy looks lost and surprised in modern day America in The Boys season 3
Jensen Ackles wasn't ready for The Boys season 3's adaptation of Herogasm. (Image credit: Amazon Studios)

The Boys season 3 is set to tackle one of the graphic novel series' most controversial storylines – and the latest big-name addition to its cast was not prepared for what was in store.

Jensen Ackles, who plays Soldier Boy in the R-rated Prime Video show's upcoming third season, revealed that he was stunned when he learned about what The Boys season 3's Herogasm storyline entails.

For those who aren't familiar with the source material, Herogasm is one of the most contentious narratives in The Boys' comic series. The six-issue story focuses on the titular anti-superhero group infiltrating an annual party that Vought International holds for its manufactured superpowered beings, who engage in a massive orgy where virtually anything – legal or otherwise – can happen without the threat of repercussions.

At the time of its release – a new issue in the miniseries landed every month between May and October 2009 – Herogasm was considered to be highly controversial, even by The Boys' standards.

One particular sequence, which sees Soldier Boy sleep with Homelander in the hope that it'll land the former a slot on The Seven's roster, was mild in comparison to other pornographic scenes in the comics. Even so, Ackles was shocked to learn about Herogasm and that Homelander-Soldier Boy scene. After finding out what goes down in the comics, the Supernatural star quickly making a few phone calls to humorously ensure that he hadn't signed up to a role that was more than he bargained for.

A first look promotional image of Jensen Ackles' Soldier Boy who'll appear in The Boys season 3

Don't worry, Soldier Boy, you won't have to sleep with Homelander in the TV adaptation. (Image credit: Amazon Studios)

Speaking during a roundtable that TechRadar attended, Ackles was initially responding to a question about whether he read Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson's comic series to prepare for the role. However, the focus quickly shifted to the Herogasm storyline, with Ackles revealing how he first heard about the extremely adult storyline.

"I didn't read the comics," Ackles said. "[Showrunner Eric] Kripke told me to stay away from them as he didn't want them to influence what we were going to create. So I had only heard about Herogasm through a friend of mine, who was a huge fan of the comics.

"One day he said to me 'Oh, I see you guys are going to tackle Herogasm in this season'. And I'm like 'What's that?', and then he told... and I'm like 'Oh, s**t'. I immediately put a call in, saying 'Hey, uh, just checking in here to ask about something!' So yeah, we really do tackle it, but it's not a verbatim depiction of what's on show in the comics. But it's certainly stuff I can't unsee."

Kripke has previously stated that the Prime Video series' adaptation of the Herogasm storyline will differ from its print counterpart. Despite taking some creative liberties with the source material, though, The Boys' creator-in-chief was determined to bring the series' most mature narrative to the small screen.

After confirming that Herogasm would be part of season 3's eight-episode run on Twitter, Kripke kept his followers updated on how development on this storyline was progressing. The former Supernatural showrunner has since gone on to describe shooting those Herogasm scenes as the "craziest dailies I've ever seen". Expect plenty of R-rated content when season 3's sixth episode – aka the Herogasm instalment – rolls around.

For more content centered on The Boys, check out the latest trailer, which teases a number of civil wars between the series' various factions. And be sure to check back in with TechRadar next week for more from Kripke and the show's cast on season 3, plus our spoiler-free review.

Senior Entertainment Reporter

As TechRadar's senior entertainment reporter, Tom covers all of the latest movies, TV shows, and streaming service news that you need to know about. You'll regularly find him writing about the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Star Wars, Netflix, Prime Video, Disney Plus, and many other topics of interest.

An NCTJ-accredited journalist, Tom also writes reviews, analytical articles, opinion pieces, and interview-led features on the biggest franchises, actors, directors and other industry leaders. You may see his quotes pop up in the odd official Marvel Studios video, too, such as this Moon Knight TV spot.

Away from work, Tom can be found checking out the latest video games, immersing himself in his favorite sporting pastime of football, reading the many unread books on his shelf, staying fit at the gym, and petting every dog he comes across.

Got a scoop, interesting story, or an intriguing angle on the latest news in entertainment? Feel free to drop him a line.