It’s been a few months since my post 5 (Spoilery) Things About Heroes That Annoy the Begeezus Out Of Me. I’m still watching Heroes, but I have a weird love/hate thing with it that demands to be looked into. I am currently at the “liking it a lot” part of an up-and-down mood swing that began at episode #1. The “Company Man” episode aired this week and we got to see a lot of the background of Horn-Rimmed Glasses guy (H.R.G.), Claire’s father. I like the way the show is progressing (mostly) and it doesn’t seem to be standing too still (usually) even though I disagree with the general consensus that creator Tim Kring – unlike the Cylons in BSG – “has a plan”.
Here are my thoughts on the characters and story lines:
Hiro Nakamura – The best character by far. But what’s up with him losing his powers for a couple of weeks? Was the character getting harder to write because he is too powerful? And he really needs to settle down…he’s in Nevada, he’s in New York, now he’s in Nevada again. His “quest” is starting to wear a little thin. Next week’s trailer looks like he finally gets his hands on Linderman’s sword. (As it were.) Casting George Takei as his father gives the show geek cred, and they seem to be taking that character in new and interesting directions. What’s his motive in wanting Claire? Hmmm…the plot thickens…
Peter Petrelli – Mimicry is one of the coolest powers and needs to be utilized more, though it is also in danger of making a character too powerful. (Isn’t this the same problem that Superman had in his early days before the introduction of super bad guys? Get Peter some Kryptonite. You already gave him an exaggerated version of Superman’s hair curl. Can Peter mimic a barber?) Peter has already met Sylar, who steals other powers, so doesn’t that mean he now possesses those powers, too? Show us! I like Peter having a mentor in Invisible Man Claude. And Eccleston is as likable here as he was in Doctor Who.
Nathan Petrelli – Flying is cool. Why in the world would he not want to? Bah! Nathan needs to become meaner. (See below.)
Sylar – Interesting decision to put Sylar and Mohinder together, especially since Mohinder’s story was going nowhere. Mohinder’s story should be revealing to us viewers the origins of the heroes as he digs into his father’s research. Getting back to Sylar: we have already seen how evil he is (See: cutting off of victim’s skulls), but lately he is starting to look like a frail wimp. Have him kill Nikki! (See below.)
Isaac Mendez – Isaac is a mediocre character. His ability to paint the future (a good move was allowing him to control it) provided some drama for the upcoming NYC blast, but how much longer can the show use that plot device?
Parkman – Parkman is a likable enough character, but I wish he’d lose the nervous head tick as he picks up someone’s thoughts. I’m not entirely sure I buy his switch from cop-aspiring-to-be-a-fed to committing a B&E at the Bennet household, but I’m willing to cut the guy some slack. For now.
Claire Bennet – There was some interesting soap-opera drama regarding Claire’s parentage. Of course, she doesn’t yet realize that she already met Uncle Peter. I’m glad she’s no longer prancing around in a cheerleader costume. With the recent “demise” of H.R.G., Claire’s storyline needs to converge with others.
Nikki – The best thing I’ve seen happen with the Nikki was in last week’s episode…the one where she didn’t have any scenes at all. Seriously, her story does more than not entertain me, it annoys me. If any character is ripe for killing off, it’s Nikki. (Calling Sylar! Bring your jigsaw.) Now, Micah’s story shows promise. It would be interesting to see how he develops his powers beyond stealing phone service and cash from ATMs.
When Heroes really started coming together for me was when the individual story lines begin intersecting. However, that device is showing its age. We will soon be at the point where there are too many coincidences to stomach. I mean, Nikki has met Nathan (and slept with him!) and Parkman. Parkman has met H.R.G. and Hatian Guy. Haitian guy met Claire. Peter, social butterfly that he is, has met Claire, Sylar, Claude, and Isaac. Hiro has met Nathan, Peter, Isaac, and even his future self! Ando has also met Nikki. I’m sure I’m forgetting some crossovers. And yet, even with all these intersections, there seems to be no inkling by most of them that there are other heroes. For a group of heroes they do possess a certain amount of obliviousness, no?
I’ve read that Tim Kring is planning season-long story arcs. That’s good. But what I would absolutely love to see an ever-widening rift between two bands of heroes – one good, one evil (or at least no so good). Maybe H.R.G. can serve a Professor Xavier-like leader to the good guys: Hiro, Peter, Claire, Claude, Micah and D.L. (Micah’s father). The Bad Heroes Team would consist of Sylar, Nathan, Parkman, Isaac, and Nikki. They could be led by the evil Paper Company Guy, played by Eric Roberts; we don’t want to eliminate the possibility of a Julia Roberts guest appearance during sweeps week!
Anyway, I’m liking Heroes at the moment. They seem to be doing all the right things with plot and pacing. I hope they can maintain it and even improve upon it.
FYI: For computer-savvy fans, the official Heroes website offers a butt-load of cool extras like an online novels, games, commentaries, episode downloads, a wiki and more.