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.