Season 4 of 'The Boys' Uncovers the Mystery Behind Joe Kessler (SPOILERS)

After much speculation and discussion on social media, viewers of 'The Boys' Season 4 finally learn the truth about Butcher's friend, Joe Kessler.

Allison DeGrushe - Author

Jul. 4 2024, Published 12:00 p.m. ET

Jeffrey Dean Morgan as Joe Kessler in Season 4 of 'The Boys.'
Source: Prime Video

Spoiler alert: This article contains major spoilers for Season 4, Episode 6 of The Boys.

We're now past the midpoint of Season 4 of The Boys, and viewers are buzzing with their predictions for what lies ahead. One theory gaining traction since the acclaimed season's start centers on Joe Kessler (Jeffrey Dean Morgan), an old colleague of everyone's favorite antihero, Billy Butcher (Karl Urban).

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In the fourth season of Prime Video's hit superhero series, Butcher is having hallucinations of his late wife, Becca (Shantel VanSanten). Adding to the intrigue is that Kessler, who, like Becca, appears exclusively in scenes with Butcher.

This revelation has sparked speculation: Is Joe Kessler a real person or simply a figment of Butcher's imagination? Luckily, Episode 6 provides the answer.

(Billy Butcher) Karl Urban looks to the left and sees a smiling Joe Kessler (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) in Season 4 of 'The Boys.'
Source: Prime Video
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So, is Joe Kessler real in 'The Boys'?

If you've shared our suspicions about whether Joe Kessler is real, Episode 6, titled "Dirty Business," reveals that Kessler isn't real — he's a hallucination.

After learning from Sameer (Omid Abtahi) that a dose of the Supe-killing virus capable of eliminating Homelander (Antony Starr) would trigger a global pandemic, Butcher begins to reconsider his strategy. However, Kessler remains steadfast, telling the Boys member they can finally eliminate all the Supes.

Becca soon intervenes, telling Butcher he can't proceed with this plan. Butcher confronts Kessler, stating firmly, "Listen, mate, no one ever said nothing about genocide."

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Jeffrey Dean Morgan as Joe Kessler and Karl Urban as Billy Butcher in Season 4 of 'The Boys.'
Source: Jasper Savage/Prime Video

Kessler scoffs in response: "Is that a f–king joke?" he says to Butcher. "Who was it that said they all gotta go? Every f–king last one of them?"

Becca interjects, labeling Kessler as "insane," and condemning his talk of mass murder. As the discussion continues, with both passionately arguing their perspectives, Kessler turns to Becca and shouts, "Shut your f–king cakehole, b—h!"

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Butcher is left speechless, his gaze shifting between Kessler and Becca. Finally, he turns to Kessler and asks incredulously, "Wait a minute, you can see her?"

The camera then cuts away to show Sameer observing Butcher seemingly conversing with himself. This jaw-dropping revelation confirms that Kessler, like Becca, exists solely within Butcher's imagination. Wow, talk about a major plot twist!

Kessler soon confronts Butcher, identifying himself as a projection of Butcher's own mind, saying, "I mean out of all the f–king people that your festering f–ked up brain could have conjured up, you picked me."

"The real Joe Kessler? He's dead in the Panjshir Valley, motherf–ker. You never dragged me out, you left me to die," Kessler reveals to Butcher.

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Following that, a montage shows Butcher's meetings with Kessler, clearly showing Butcher alone and appearing to converse with himself.

Butcher argues with his imaginary pal, insisting he remembers saving the real Kessler, but Kessler counters, "Unless, of course, you got a big ol' fat V'd-up brain tumor, ya c–t! Which is why you are seeing me in the first place."

"I killed Ezekiel for you," Kessler shockingly tells Butcher, adding, "I am inside of you. I am you, which is why when I tell you that you wanna do this, I am literally telling you that you f–king wanna do this. So, don't you worry Billy, my boy, daddy's home."

New episodes of The Boys drop on Thursdays at 3 a.m. EST on Prime Video.

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