Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Boys, Volume 6: The Self-Preservation Society” as Want to Read:
The Boys, Volume 6: The Self-Preservation Society
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Boys, Volume 6: The Self-Preservation Society

(The Boys Collected Editions #6)

4.12  ·  Rating details ·  3,026 ratings  ·  113 reviews
It had to happen sooner or later: the supes get mad enough to go after the Boys. One of the world's most powerful superteams decides to hit our heroes, all guns blazing, and the Female is the first to fall into their lethal trap. The sixth Dynamite collection of Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson's The Boys is here, complete with a cover gallery.
Paperback, 200 pages
Published March 23rd 2010 by Dynamite Entertainment (first published January 1st 2010)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Boys, Volume 6, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Boys, Volume 6

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.12  · 
Rating details
 ·  3,026 ratings  ·  113 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of The Boys, Volume 6: The Self-Preservation Society
Aug 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
The Boys are back and still kicking ass.
Seriously. They're just beating the shit out of everyone.


Just when you think you're tired of Nazi bad guys, Ennis creates a douchebag racist enough to make it fun to watch as Butcher pokes his eye out. And really, isn't that what we all want out of our comics?


You've got the ongoing story that's happening between the supes, Vought, and the Boys, which was very good. And then you've also got a few of the origin stories tossed in.


Granted, some of the stories
mark monday
Mar 30, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: comicon
superheroes aren't superheroes, they're superassholes. lather, rinse, repeat. this time out it is The Avengers that are parodied and torn to bloody bits, with the most sadistic treatment provided to the women of course. rinse, repeat. Homelander gets agitated; Starlight doesn't like her work life; a nazi superhero(villain) loses an eye; Hughie gets sick over all of the violence. repeat. i feel like i've read this before and it tastes rather like backwash.

includes a lengthy backstory for Mother's
May 21, 2011 rated it it was amazing
You could make an argument for the fact that the true focus of this story *is* the characters. Their relationships and how they change and grow.

This is especially true of the relationship between Wee Hughie and Butcher. You could argue that the entire story is about the two of them. About their relationship.

Though personally, my *favorite* relationship was probably between the Frenchman and the Female.

(Continued in book 7.)
Stewart Tame
Jun 05, 2017 rated it really liked it
I'm apparently incapable of reading the phrase, "The Self-Preservation Society," without hearing the opening bars of the Kinks' "Village Green Preservation Society" in my head, because my brain runs on music references. And caffeine. And cheap puns. Just one of many crosses that I bear ...

Two story arcs in this volume. First, Vought-American sends a team of supes after the Boys. Could this be the end? Of course not, silly. We get to see Butcher do what he does best. A familiar beard returns. And
Sep 23, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: creator-owned
Wow, talk about taking it up a notch. Just like I'd suspected a couple of books ago, the slow burn and character development they've been doing lately just increases the impact of balls-out action that we get here.

Then we slow down again and get deep inside the origin stories (finally!) of most of The Boys. As fantastically absurd and over the top these stories each are, it's amazing to me how well Ennis weaves in emotional notes that really connect me with these characters. And Robertson evokes
Jesse A
Jun 08, 2015 rated it really liked it
Another good volume. Back to fun.
Chris Greensmith
Jul 16, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: the-boys
"I had been made the way I was by men. By their violation of nature. By their treatment of me, attempting to remake me in an image of their own devising. But I found a new life with The Boys."
This volume went from one extreme to the other, so violent, aggressive and over the top racism/sexism to being rather touching and sweet. Most of this was back stories for Frenchie, Mothers Milk and The Girl, which were all great. I feel this was a bit of a 'bridge' between story arcs and I usually hate
Oct 12, 2018 rated it did not like it
I'm sorry but PR teams who create comics for the supe's and use RAPE as an origin story is a no-go for me. Only Hughie and Marrie were it for me. I even lost every respect I had for Butch, even if the theory i have in mind about him and Homeland is true.

I can't continue this...
Sam Quixote
Sep 20, 2011 rated it it was amazing
The Self Preservation Society is a triumphant return to the level of storytelling found in "The Name of the Game" and "Good for the Soul" after the misfire that was "Herogasm". Vought American decide to do something about The Boys and send their second best supes out to sort them out. Leading them is a Nazi superhero called Stormfront who takes out The Female and Mother's Milk leaving it up to Butcher to sort it out. A great character from earlier in the series shows up in the finale and it's ...more
Jun 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: comics
Well now, THAT was damn entertaining, and moving. (Somehow a foul mouthed Brit wrote the best tribute comic to 9-11 that I've read). Here it's the Brooklyn Bridge, but the sentiments are the same, beautifully conveyed by Ennis (yes, beautiful and Ennis in the same sentence).

Here we get a closer look inside of Mother's Milk, the Frenchman, and the Female. The Frenchman's is a little silly, but that's OK, MM's is great. There's also a huge throw-down with Payback, the #2 VA team. One of the team
Apr 19, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: graphic-novels
Plot points:
(view spoiler)
Peter Derk
May 30, 2019 rated it liked it
Truth time: I read volumes 4-12 in a weekend, and here's the weird part: I'll score each one a 3, but overall it's a 4.

How does this work?

I guess I feel like the whole arc was fun to read. It was interesting, weird, pretty transgressive, and you become invested in seeing how it all plays out. And without spoiling a thing, I can say that it has an ending that's satisfactory. Things are wrapped up, which is great.

So, while the individual parts are all a 3 for me, the whole is a 4. Go figure.
Jim Gorman
Jul 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: graphic-novel
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
D'Iberville Library
Mar 23, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: graphic-novels
The most important aspect of this edition is the background stories. We finally lose the mystery behind M.M., Frenchie, and The Female. Butcher is behind the sudden illumination. He discussed it with M.M. because they could see that Hughie was having a difficult time handling things. Their opening up about their pasts is very abrupt and even Hughie comments on its suddenness. Perhaps they believe that by telling Hughie their stories, he will be more at peace with the level of violence that The ...more
Aug 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: darkfantasy
Both Vought American and the Homelander himself have had enough of The Boys, so one of the top powered being teams in the worlds is sent after them... the result is... CARNAGE!
After reading this battle between a group of powered beings you'll never take Marvel or D.C. serious again... Ellis and Robertson almost lovingly create ultra violence on the page alongside a number of levels of dark comedy.
Then amazingly they keep up the momentum in the 2nd half of the volume with some unsettling almost
Mar 22, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: graphic-novel
The background stories.
Dec 24, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Finally! I've been wanting two things from the Boys since Vol 1: their individual back stories and to see some consequences for their actions. Thus far the Boys have terrorised the superhero community with almost no repercussions and don't get me wrong it's been great to see them put the supes in their place but sooner or later someone was going to take a swing at them and now it's finally happening.
The first half of this volume sees the Boys having to go on the defensive as they are targeted by
Jennifer Juffer
Oct 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: graphic-novels
This issue is amazing!
It's the meet and greet issue of The Boys. Little Hugie and the reader get an inside tell from the individuals who make up their small but awesomely powerful group of superhero watchers.
It was emotive. It was gruesomely honest in some cases. In every instance, there was one theme- redemption of some form and shape.
It was by far my favorite.
As I closed the last page, I stared at the cover... and wished I could read it all over again, for the first time.
Ryk Stanton
Feb 10, 2015 rated it it was amazing
July 2019 - Nothing to add to what I'd already said.

February 2015 - After a bit of slow storytelling, this one really stepped it up. For the first time, it is not The Boys who are after a superteam, it is a superteam that is after The Boys. Very violent, very gory, but very good if you like this sort of thing. It's not always what I like (I have milder tastes) but the storytelling and characters are exceptional.
TJ Shelby
Nov 15, 2010 rated it really liked it
While most of The Boys volumes so far have been classic Ennis "shock and awe", this one was actually more about the story than the gratuitousness. We get an amazing insight into The Butcher's mindset as he takes on the world's second most powerful team, Payback, by himself. The gems of the book are the origin stories about Mothers Milk, Frenchie, and The Female.
Albert Yates
The book starts with the secondary group called Payback coming after The Boys with revenge/vengeance on their mind. And you can imagine that plan goes sideways quickly.

The rest of the book is about Little Hughie learning the back stories about the other 3 members of the group, Mother's Milk, Frenchie and La Femme. (Mother's Milk now makes sense after hearing his story)
Shannon Appelcline
Jun 21, 2013 rated it really liked it
The main story has the typical funny violence that’s at the heart of The Boys [7]. The origins stories vary. Mother’s Milk is hard to follow for some reason [6], while the Frenchie one is outright funny [8] and the Female’s is actually insightful [7].
May 25, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2017, owned, digital, comics
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jun 19, 2015 rated it really liked it
Love the origin stories, especially The Female.
David Frank
Jan 01, 2015 rated it it was ok
You're trying too hard.
Apr 27, 2019 rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Adam Stone
Sep 01, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: superhero-comics
I wish this had been broken into two collections, as it would have allowed me to enjoy The Boys battle with Payback and Stormfront, and throw away the awful origin stories that fill the latter half of this volume.

If you enjoy the first half of this volume, I strongly advise putting it down at the end of The Self-Preservation Society (it concludes in issue four), tear the rest of the pages out, and burn them.

They're not overly offensive (not completely inoffensive, but a much easier read than
Nick Scott
Jun 28, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The opening story in this one is great, featuring The Boys hunting down some supes as Vaught American moves to eliminate them.

The rest of this one mostly covers the back stories of a few of the characters. And while I enjoyed Mother's Milk's story about his father teaching himself law and the strain his father's obsession with getting back at Vaught American put on their family, I wasn't as enthralled by the Frenchman's weird bread jousting backstory. The Female's backstory was also just kinda
Craig Fisher
Mar 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing
They told me that if I read The Boys long enough I would get hooked. This is the volume that has done that for me. I loved Herogasm, the previous volume, its heavy politics, literate writing and stylish art made me a fan. This volume I. The other hand, this is brilliant.

The title is from that British classic, The Italian Job. Yeah, the Michael Caine one, not that Marky Mark bollocks.
Carlos Ezquerra, the great Judge Dredd artist for 2000AD handles the art chores.
And the Boys finally feel like a
Shane Kiely
Sep 07, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
First time diving back into this series since watching the tv adaptation. This particular installment contains a bunch of stuff I don’t think a tv show (even a contemporary nudity heavy/sweary one) would risk. 2 major plot threads, the Boys battling a legit Nazi & back stories of varying gravity. Nice juxtaposition of darkness & light. Some really impressive artwork especially in its depiction of violence. Still a series very worth checking out in its own right even if the TV show has ...more
« previous 1 3 4 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Irredeemable, Vol. 6
  • Irredeemable, Vol. 5
  • Irredeemable, Vol. 4
  • Irredeemable, Vol. 7
  • Irredeemable, Vol. 3
  • Irredeemable, Vol. 9
  • Irredeemable, Vol. 8
  • Irredeemable, Vol. 10
  • Irredeemable, Vol. 2
  • Irredeemable, Vol. 1
  • Journey to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker - Allegiance
  • Jennifer Blood, Volume Five: Blood Legacy
  • Incorruptible, Vol. 4
  • Superman: Year One (2019) #1
  • Crossed, Vol. 2: Family Values
  • Jennifer Blood, Volume Two: Beautiful People
  • Jennifer Blood, Volume Four: The Trial of Jennifer Blood
  • Jennifer Blood, Volume Three: Neither Tarnished Nor Afraid
See similar books…
Ennis began his comic-writing career in 1989 with the series Troubled Souls. Appearing in the short-lived but critically-acclaimed British anthology Crisis and illustrated by McCrea, it told the story of a young, apolitical Protestant man caught up by fate in the violence of the Irish 'Troubles'. It spawned a sequel, For a Few Troubles More, a broad Belfast-based comedy featuring two supporting ...more

Other books in the series

The Boys Collected Editions (1 - 10 of 13 books)
  • The Boys, Volume 1: The Name of the Game
  • The Boys, Volume 2: Get Some
  • The Boys, Volume 3: Good For The Soul
  • The Boys, Volume 4: We Gotta Go Now
  • The Boys, Volume 5: Herogasm
  • The Boys, Volume 7: The Innocents
  • The Boys, Volume 8: Highland Laddie
  • The Boys, Volume 9: The Big Ride
  • The Boys, Volume 10: Butcher, Baker, Candlestick Maker
  • The Boys, Volume 11: Over the Hills with the Swords of a Thousand Men
“I can melt steel, fucker, I'll microwave your guts and punch them our your asshole.” 0 likes
“The urge to fight, to maul, to murder: it is the greatest cancer that afflicts mankind. It obliterates the body of the victim, and the spirit of the the one who strikes the blow. I have seen it...” 0 likes
More quotes…