"The Name of the Game" is the series premire the of The Boys and the first episode overall.
When a Supe kills the love of his life, A/V salesman Hughie Campbell teams up with Billy Butcher, a vigilante hell-bent on punishing corrupt Supes — and Hughie’s life will never be the same again.
Downtown, two kids discuss who would win in a fight between the Deep and Translucent. A large van transporting money, which has been hijacked, speeds towards the kids, who try to run, but are unsuccessful. Just before the van hits the kids, it is stopped by Queen Maeve, who fights off the assailants with Homelander's assistance. News agencies report that Homelander and Queen Maeve never miss a chance at publicity, with Homelander taking photographs with nearby pedestrians.
At Bryman Audio, Hughie Campbell tries to talk to his manager, however, is shut down immediately. He meets with his girlfriend, Robin, having arranged to have lunch together. After leaving the shop, Robin asks if he asked his manager, Gary, for a raise. Hughie jokes that he couldn't just kick his door down like Homelander. Robin and Hughie discuss them living together, when Robin suddenly explodes, having been in A-Train's direct path while he was running. Hughie is left on the roadside, covered in Robin's blood and holding her severed hands. After stopping for a moment, covered in blood, A-Train, with a red duffel bag slung across his chest, zooms away.
In Iowa, Starlight auditions for the Seven, where she partakes in an interview and shows her ability to project blinding white light from her body. Meanwhile, Hughie watches the news, in which A-Train "regrets" the death of Robin, telling the whole world that she stepped out into the middle of the street while he was chasing bank robbers. A representative of Vought International arrives at his door, revealing that Vought would like to offer him $45,000 if he signs a non-disclosure agreement — he asks for time to think about it and has visions of himself attacking the representative.
Back in Iowa, Starlight receives a call from Vought, announcing that she has been accepted to join the Seven. She and her mother are ecstatic. Hughie attempts to pull a lawsuit case together against A-Train, but is shut down by his father, who tries to convince him to take the deal as they could use the money. Hughie refuses.
In New York, Vought International hosts its 2019 Shareholder event, in which the Deep announces the retirement of Lamplighter and introduces Starlight. Vought also premiers its plans for the future, in which a superhero will guard every city.
At The Seven's headquarters, the Deep shows Starlight around. She says that she's standing where she always wanted to be, and even reveals that she once had a crush on the Deep as a kid. Prompted by this, the Deep removes his pants, which horrifies Starlight. The Deep, however, reveals that oral sex with him is the price she must pay to remain a member of The Seven. In order to persuade her, he blackmails her, saying that he is second-in-command of The Seven and will tell Homelander that she attacked him if she does not agree.
At work, Hughie watches Translucent's interview on the Jimmy Fallon show, when Billy Butcher enters. He introduces himself as FBI, saying that he has heard Hughie's story and they should talk. Billy says that the Supes lose hundreds of people a year, but the public love Supes, which is why nobody cares what they get up to.
Billy brings Hughie to an undercover Supe bar, saying that this is the only place Supes can be themselves. Billy shows Hughie CCTV footage of A-Train at the bar, laughing about Robin's death, which encourages him to join Billy. Billy hands Hughie the police log from the night of Robin's death, which shows no bank alarms, hinting that A-Train is hiding something. Billy tells Hughie to call Vought and tell them he will sign the NDA, but only if A-Train is there in person. Billy plans for Hughie to plant a bug in Seven Tower, but he refuses.
At Vought Industries, Madelyn Stillwell offers the Mayor of Baltimore one of Vought's Supes, Nubian Prince. She tries to barter a $300 million/year deal, but the Mayor laughs, offering $200 million. Steve, the Mayor, claims that he knows about Compound V, and is willing to expose the truth if Madelyn doesn't agree. Madelyn refuses to acknowledge Compound V's existence, however, stating that they'll go to Atlanta instead.
Over the phone, Starlight attempts to tell her mother, Donna January, about what happened with the Deep but just cries instead. Sitting on the same park bench, this gets Hughie's attention. Both say they're having bad days. Starlight admits that her life isn't what she thought it would be, while Hughie reminisces about his time with Robin.
Hughie meets again with Billy, declaring that he's in on the deal. Hughie calls Vought, agreeing to take the deal, but only if A-Train apologizes in person.
At Seven Tower, Homelander holds a meeting. The Deep mocks Starlight; she is able to stand her ground, though, insisting that she is in The Seven to stay. Homelander tells the team that he wants to hear who The Seven saved today, starting with Black Noir.
Billy takes Hughie to Seven Tower, instructing him on how to plant the bug. Hughie is hesitant and scared, but he is able to get past the security in Seven Tower and meets with A-Train. Hughie follows Billy's instructions, but unbeknownst to him, is witnessed by Translucent dropping the bug on the floor in the toilet. He signs the NDA and is able to plant the bug. Billy drops Hughie back off at work, saying that he has done everything he needs him for at the moment.
Madelyn calls Steve, saying that she's willing to take $230 million for Nubian Prince and asking if he'll be discreet about the Compound V rumours.
Translucent confronts Hughie about the bug planted in Seven Tower, assaulting and threatening him. He is saved by Billy, however, who smashes through the storefront, running Translucent over with a car. Billy and Translucent fight, eventually leading to Hughie electrocuting Translucent.
On his flight, Steve and his son notice Homelander flying alongside their jet. His son questions whether they are friends; just then, Homelander uses his heat vision to destroy the plane, killing everyone on board.
Special Guest Star
- In the comics, Starlight performs sexual acts with Black Noir, Homelander and A-Train, in this episode, she only performs them with the Deep, and the rest of The Seven aren't aware.
- The shot in which Queen Maeve shatters an armoured truck was created first by crashing an armoured truck into a steel pole and later removed by VFX.
- According to an earlier draft of the script from October 15, 2017, Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg were supposed to direct this episode back then.
- The episode gets its name from the first issue of the comic.
Behind the Scenes
- Prime Video Trivia
- The Boys 1x01 - The Name of the Game.pdf. Retrieved on December 10, 2019.