Why Was Black Noir Watching Cartoons? Are They Real & Where Do They Come From?

Black Noir has always been one of the most mysterious characters in The Boys because of the fact that he doesn’t talk and is always hiding behind his mask. Other than the flashback scene from Grace Mallory, Black Noir’s past was almost completely a mystery. However, in episode 7 of season 3, we saw him hiding out in an abandoned pizza place where he was actually watching and talking to cartoon characters. So, why is Black Noir watching cartoons?

It is possible that Black Noir is watching cartoons because he isn’t exactly right in the head. It was revealed through the cartoons that he suffered a brain injury at the hands of Soldier Boy in Nicaragua. He imagined those cartoons while projecting his thoughts through them because he could no longer speak.

The fact that we were able to get to know more about Black Noir and see what’s going on in his head was one of the best parts of episode 7 of season 3. That’s because it allowed us to understand more about his character and what happened to him in the past. So, with that said, let’s get to know more about Black Noir in The Boys and why he imagined cartoons.

Why Was Black Noir Watching Cartoons?

Back in episode 6 of season 3 of The Boys, we saw that Black Noir was quick to flee from the premises of Vought and even went AWOL by removing his tracker chip right after he learned that Soldier Boy had escaped from Russia. Then, later in the episode, another thing that we saw was that the TNT Twins told Soldier Boy that Black Noir was the one who orchestrated the plan to Betray him and give him to the Russians.

Meanwhile, in episode 7, we were able to see where Black Noir went as it was clear that he was hiding from Soldier Boy because he was afraid of his former Payback ally. The moment he entered an abandoned pizza restaurant, something bizarre happened because he actually opened a few cans of food and placed them in food bowls even though there were no people or animals in the vicinity.

Then the weirdest thing in the series happened when cartoon animals started appearing and talking to Black Noir and treating him like a familiar friend. It even came to a point where they were talking to him about his past with Soldier Boy and allowed him to see his memories in a cartoon-like show that was able to allow us to see what really happened involving him, Soldier Boy, and the rest of Payback. So, why was Black Noir watching cartoons?

When we saw what happened to Black Noir after the attack by the Sandinistas and the Russians in Nicaragua, we assumed that his injuries kept him from talking or even showing his face to the public. However, the scene wherein he was watching cartoons and talking to cartoon animals showed a different side to the character.

It seems as if Black Noir had regressed to a childlike state, and that’s why, throughout the series, it seems as if he acts like an innocent child disguised as a killing machine that did whatever Homelander and Vought told him to do. And it was that moment with the cartoon animals that allowed us to see more of what is going on in the head of Black Noir because it was obvious that more damage was done to him in that Nicaragua incident.

As the cartoons steadily revealed Black Noir’s past, we understood that Soldier Boy was a grade-A asshole to him and the rest of Payback because he treated them like they were beneath him. In Black Noir’s case, Soldier Boy didn’t allow him to be able to be a star on his own and often bullied him in training. And that was what made everyone in Payback realize that they needed to take matters into their own hands.

When Payback finally put their plan of betraying Soldier Boy into motion, Black Noir challenged him but could not even come close to defeating him. Soldier Boy eventually burned his face and smashed his head with his shield. And while the cartoons aren’t exactly reflective of real life, it appeared that Soldier Boy bashed Black Noir’s head with his shield so hard that he damaged his brain.

The fact that a part of Black Noir’s brain actually got smashed out of his head could explain why he lost the ability to speak. Of course, it also explains why he isn’t exactly right in the head, as he might have experienced regression to a childlike state that allowed him to imagine cartoon friends in his head and bring them to life.

In a way, those cartoon animal friends that appeared in episode 7 reflect Black Noir’s thoughts. Since he could no longer speak, he was projecting his thoughts through those animal friends as they allowed him to confront his past once more in the hopes that he would finally find the strength to stand up to Soldier Boy and challenge him to one more fight. 

Are Black Noir’s Cartoon Friends Real?

As outrageous and as crazy as The Boys may be, none of those cartoon friends of Black Noir were ever real. This was seen in a quick scene wherein it was clear that he wasn’t watching anything except thin air, but in his head, he was watching a cartoon that told the story of his past with Soldier Boy.

Basically speaking, these cartoon friends were merely imaginary creatures that Black Noir created because, deep inside, he must have been feeling lonely for many years and had to resort to creating and imagining cartoon friends that kept him company. On top of that, Black Noir isn’t exactly right in the head after Soldier Boy literally bashed his brain out.

Still, those friends of his were what allowed him to find the strength to decide whether or not he should confront Soldier Boy. Buster Beaver, the leader of his imaginary cartoon friends, told him that real bravery isn’t the absence of fear but the strength to overcome his fears. And that was what allowed Black Noir to finally decide his next move in relation to Soldier Boy and the harsh past that he endured under him.

Where Do Black Noir’s Cartoon Friends Come From?

We mentioned that those cartoon friends that Black Noir imagined are merely creations of his mind. However, they were actually the animal mascots of the pizza place called Buster Beaver’s, which is the name of the abandoned restaurant that he hid in. Buster Beaver’s Pizza is basically The Boys’ in-universe version of Chuck E. Cheese, as both of these restaurants are animal-themed and have arcades. 

  • Ysmael is a self-professed geek that loves anything related to fantasy, sci-fi, video gaming, and anime. Spends his free time watching movies, TV shows and gaming, a lot.