About Last Night: Heroes Season Premier

So, with the long wait finally over, NBC debuted season 2 of Heroes, to much fan anticipation. But did the writers and producers manage to shake off the disappointing finale and bring the zest back to the show?

(Warning: Spoilers Ahead!)

Well, yes, and no. First, the good parts. I still like Hiro as a character, and I was interested to see his story. That thread was the one I wanted to see the most of, and I think they did a nice job introducing the situation in feudal Japan (but how much does modern day Japanese and English sound like their counterparts from way back when?). Although I do have some reservations about Hiro’s story going forward.


The whole Claire story line was mostly interesting too. Having to move to a new state, new school, new people, then trying to fit in to avoid suspicion. I also liked that Claire is trying to follow what her dad asked her to do, even so far as to take all the crap from the smarmy cheerleader, who needs to be smacked by reality. I can sense the comeuppance in the making here.

The other part of Claire’s story was the whole interaction with HRG and his new job. It was freakin’ hilarious as the self-important assistant manager tried to intimidate HRG into doing crap work, knowing that HRG could snap that guy like a twig. The whole finger grab ninja move was definitely worth the build up. After asking Claire to lay low, how can he square assaulting his boss with his instructions? Hopefully this will play a role in the stories.

I was all set to be hacked off with Mohinder’s research showing a plague among the ‘specials’. In reality, it was really just a ploy to get Mohinder back with the Company, and have someone on the inside for HRG to exact his revenge. Mohinder and Parkman are also supposedly taking care of Molly, but aside from showing us there is some really evil guy still out there, there wasn’t much to this story. And I don’t think Parkman using his power to help him as a cop is cheating, Molly doesn’t have the perspective to see that.

It was also nice to see Ando again, this time working with Hiro’s father. Then using that relationship to show us there is someone among the original 9 who is apparently knocking off the others was a nice touch. Too bad they actually offed Hiro’s dad. I liked George Takei in that role. And using the old ‘Sylar’ trick of not showing us the face of the assassin, even though Hiro’s father knew who it was, was kinda lame. Yet another plot thread to follow.

Seeing Nathan as a broken man, estranged from his mother was, I thought, a nice touch. He basically witnessed his brother’s complete destruction and feels responsible for it and escapes into the bottle. This was a nice contrast to the arrogant, self-assured Nathan from last season.

The new heroes didn’t really do much for me. Alejandro we don’t know much about, but Maya seems to have the same flip-out and kill people power that Niki had, although it’s probably something a bit different. And Claire’s creepy admirer has flight. Ok, seen it. Thanks. Try something new. Oh, and not having Niki/Jessica was a good thing. I see she is still on the show, which is disappointing. I didn’t find her story to be that interesting. Micha’s though, is.

Which brings us to the bad.

The biggest issue I had was Peter being shown alive, chained up in a crate, and with amnesia. Amnesia. Good grief, that is an old cliche, and disappointing. You’d think blowing up real good would atomize you, destroy the part of the brain you rely on the regenerate, and result in permanent death. I guess Peter must have saved his game at an earlier spot and restarted. The only two explanations I can think of are: Peter has some sort of Iron Giant ability to pull his scattered parts back together, or he’s a clone. The clone thing would really bug me, as that would be yet another old cliche.

Secondly, I’m expecting the Hiro storyline to go one of two ways: Either Hiro does everything he remembers Takezo doing while not getting the credit, or he acts like Takezo’s sensei and basically makes him become a hero. Only one of these story lines is interesting. And I’d really like to know how Hiro’s power works. Why the heck can’t he go back to the future? (Great Scott!) Does he need 1.21 gigawatts of power?

And the other annoying thing, which probably shouldn’t, was the product placement of Nissan. It was annoying last year as Hiro kept referring to the Nissan Versa. Looks like this year’s car of choice is the Nissan Rogue. If anything, this type of shenanigans will make me less likely to buy a Nissan. I don’t care its driven by characters on a show, don’t be annoying. Oh, too late.

So, all in all, the season premiere was a good one, but not as good as the best episodes of last season. They haven’t done much to annoy me away from the show, so I’ll keep watching. And it’s still on my DVR.

15 thoughts on “About Last Night: Heroes Season Premier”

  1. Uh, Dude its JIGGawatts of power. Not GIGawatts. Pfft. You call yourself a geek. :-@

    Hollyweird’s only consistency in my opinion is its ability to ruin something good. Even so, it’s so difficult to gauge how a show is going to be from the 1st episode – even if its the 1st of a new season.

    I agree with much of what you said, esp about Hiro and Peter. Still, I’ll give it 5 or 6 episodes worth of space on my TIVO before I decide whether I’ll stick with it or not.

  2. There were a number of things that I wasn’t fond of in the new season opener.

    Parkman’s situation seemed unrealistic (he got a new job as a detective in a new police force after the way his old job ended? In four months?).

    If HRG and Claire are really on the run from the company (do nothing to cause people to notice you) shouldn’t they at least change their hair styles? Maybe a dye job? And Claire’s interactions at school seemed like bad high school drama.

    The whole “marked for death” thing was pretty stupid. And we never saw Hiro’s dad’s powers. He was a cool character to be killed so stupidly.

    I’ll still be watching this season but they really need editors. The HRG/Mohinder story seems interesting. Hiro’s tale is always interesting, he was my favorite character for most of the first season. And Peter Petrelli’s story could be good, I liked him also even if they did write him poorly oftentimes.

    Someone kill Parkman. Stupid character.

  3. I think that Hiro *could* return to the future if he wanted to, but it wouldn’t be *his* future. What with Takezo being a jerk. So Hiro must somehow set it straight so he can return to his future.

    Agreed, though, on the amnesia. Gee whiz.

    And what’s up with the new flying dude? How many flying dudes are there in this universe, anyway? If you’re running out of powers, don’t default to flying; that’s all I’m saying.

  4. From the sounds of your review, I’m not sorry I’m skipping out on Heroes this season. I think I would have spent the whole hour ranting at Kring about his flimsy writing.

  5. Don’t be too critical too fast. I think that the sci-fi/geek community is overreacting to the “overpopularity” that has attached itself to Heroes. It is no longer the great show that wasn’t getting press time, it’s the new must-watch ratings juggernaut. As such, all of us geeks are more likely to say “It’s gone Hollywood” or “It’s too mainstream for me.” I honestly think that Firefly was only elevated to its current status because it was canceled.

    But give Heroes S2 a chance people, it’s not episodic so while one “issue” may be weak, it might be necessary to set up something down the road. If the loyal S1 fan base leaves because it’s too Hollywood then it will actually have to go Hollywood just to try and get the ratings numbers back up.

    Besides, it’s only been one episode!

  6. I agree some of the writing was ham handed but I did not have the issues with the “Peter” storyline that JP did.

    Peter has met Claire hasn’t he? Peter also has the ability to mimic other heroes powers? Why would you expect Peter to not regenerate?

    The amnesia part was lame though. I agree with you there. But was it really amnesia, or just confusion? I don’t think we saw enough of Peter to know do we?

    Overall I wouldn’t go so far as to say the season opener was bad, but they really need to pay the writers a lot more to keep the quality up.

  7. Peter survived the blast he set off in the alternate future that really cool Hiro came from. But appeared to have retained his memory (and the guilt).

    As to the amnesia – consider. Nathan grabs him, flys up, up (and away) God knows how high/far before Peter lets go. Obviously, Nathen ditched him at some point – sort of like a strap on booster – because, other than a crappy beard and a massive dose of agnst, Nathan appears to be all right.

    So, Peter does what ever it is he does – do we know he literally explodes? Or, from what we saw of Ted’s application of this power, did he emit a huge burst of energy? From the vacuum, maybe. Anyway, assume enough of him surivives for Claire’s power to work on. How high did Nathan get before cutting him loose? 10,000 feet? 20,000? Edge of space? (We have to assume Nathan’s power generates some sort of force field that keeps him from being torn apart when he exceeds the speed of sound – it might keep air in, too, for a while) At any rate, the fall is going to take some time. There may be multiple regenerations depending on how high he was. Regenerate at 40,000 feet – whoops! No air. Die of asphyxiation. Regnerate one or more times until there’s enough air. So, still at 15,000 or so feet. Probably unconscious, otherwise, he can fly, too. Hits the ground at around 120 mph. Regenerate yet again.

    Lot of stress there. Not to mention the psychological strees. Dissociative Amnesia would not be all that unlikely in Peter’s situation. As to how he replaced a bunch of iPods in that container, who knows.

  8. That is a great recaplet and analysis.

    I think Peter being alive is an odd twist. Hopefully they will come up with a good explanation. It would have been nice and clean to let Peter die, but I guess he was too likeable to let go. Maybe there is a long term plan for Peter but if that is true then why pretend to kill him.

    I really like the story arc of the new vs old. It will be interesting how much we learn about the elders in season 2.

  9. So seriously though (he said, trying not to read anything): Is the SkiiiFiii Channel doing repeats of the show again? It looks like October is going to be wrasslin’ and horror flicks, except for Friday nights and whenever Eureka is on!

  10. JP,

    You need to read the comics to learn about Maya’s skill. Actually, Alejandro has the same power. Or you can read my super long recap of all the comics to date:

    http://onourtv.com/index.php/20070925-quick-summaries-of-heroes-graphic-novels-comics-1-52/

    or I can just tell you…

    Maya and Alejandro have some sort of black death super virus in them that I guess they have control over (not sure). It turns people’s blood black and kills them pretty quickly. That will be nice in New York ;-)

  11. Like with most of season 1 episodes of Heroes, the show’s pacing can be slower than a snail’s pace. However, fans of the show will always be rewarded with some tidbit or golden gem to keep the story going. The 2nd season premiere has not changed course in its story structure in interweaving many storylines at the same time. As always, Hiro steals the show anytime he is on. This leads to more confident that season 2 will remain true to itself without having to jump the shark?

    If you want to read more, click here

  12. As was mentioned earlier, why would Peter have blown up when Ted never did?

    The falling 40,000 feet thing is a good explanation of amnesia, but I think there’s an even better one – Peter was wearing the Haitian’s necklace. I think he erased Peter’s memory. Although – I’m also not positive it really is Peter (or that Nathan is really Nathan).

    Just because we’ve seen flying before, why should we be surprised/upset that someone else has that ability? How many “traditional” super-heroes can fly? I’ve never even followed the genre and I know that is common.

    I should probably make the disclaimer that I’m not interested in Heroes for it’s sci-fi side as much as for it’s philosophical side (nothing is ever exactly what it seems to be.) So I guess I wouldn’t necessarily recognize if something is not up to the sci-fi community standards.

    As far as why Hiro can’t travel back to normal time – he said himself “oh, no, I broke the future!” With the town burned down and the princess mad, the future he comes from doesn’t exist. He’s going to have to back-track farther in time and find a way to un-destroy the village.

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