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Heroes Season Finale, May 21 May 22, 2007

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Last Week: Everything has led up to this, and we finally are about to find out what can stop an exploding man…

“How to Stop an Exploding Man” Recap

As we start off, everyone is wondering where Sylar has gone. Some want to stop him, but Nathan is prepared to let the tragedy happen. When Peter goes to Nathan for help, Claire runs off and finds her grandmother. Nathan knows there is nothing anyone can do to stop the bomb, and when Peter hears his brother’s thoughts, he runs out, only to collapse when Ted’s powers manifest.

Parkman, Suresh and Mr. Bennet try to convince Molly Walker to find Sylar. Right before she finds him, however, she gives a hint that there is someone much worse out there. Mr. Bennet and Parkman split up, each one with their own idea about how to stop Sylar.

Peter has a vision of his first meeting with Simone. In the flashback, he comforts her about her father’s impending death. It turns out Simone’s father, Charles, was working with Linderman and Mrs. Petrelli. Charles believes everyone is betting on the wrong brother, and Peter’s sense of hope will be a stronger force to save the world than Nathan’s clear leadership and strength. When Mrs. Petrelli leaves, Charles reveals he is aware of Peter’s presence.

Meanwhile, Sylar manages to capture Ando, but Hiro is able to rescue him. Later, Parkman shows up in the studio a little bit later, but Sylar has left and is now at Kirby Plaza. Hiro has transported Ando back to Japan, and he is prepared to face Sylar alone.

In one of the nearby buildings, Candice is disguised as Jessica and attacks Niki. It turns out Niki has Jessica’s super-strength, which she uses to stop Candice and save Micah. They meet up with DL, Suresh and Molly in the hallway, and the group escape from attacking agents.

In Peter’s vision, Charles explains Peter is good because he has the ability to love unconditionally. Mr. Bennet wakes Peter up, and they team up to save the city from Sylar. Mr. Bennet even reveals his name to Peter, Noah.

Parkman, Peter, Hiro, Niki — all attack Sylar in Kirby plaza, with Hiro striking the killing blow. But in the middle of the battle, Peter shows he is unable to control Ted’s powers. Claire takes her father’s gun, and prepares to shoot Peter. Suddenly, Nathan shows up and says the future is not written in stone. Nathan grabs his brother and the pair fly off into the atmosphere, where Peter explodes overhead, likely resulting in his brother’s death.

In the aftermath, Parkman’s survival is also uncertain, but Sylar seems to live for another day, as his body is missing next to an open manhole.

End of Volume One.

Volume Two: “Generations”

Just as it seems the season is finished, Hiro appears in medieval Japan, surrounded by samurai warriors carrying a banner bearing a recurring mark seen throughout season one. In the sky, a familiar eclipse occurs, and fade out.

Review:
This season had a good ending, but one that feels unsatisfying on some level. The build-up during the two previous episodes left a lot of high expectations for this finale, and in many ways it delivered. The acting was great, as it maintained the high quality that this show has maintained since it returned from the break. The special effects were also good — better than the rest of the episodes this season.

The best part of the whole episode was, of course, the union of the various heroes against Sylar. Everything this season led up to this fight, and it was satisfying. It was great to see Hiro be the one who stopped Sylar, but he did not have to become a killer to do so. And the final moments of the show hint at the exploration of super-powered people throughout history, which should be an interesting and different direction for the show.

As for the bad, it just all seemed a little too predictable. Unless the city was going to be left in ruin, the only other option would have been Peter flying off to explode. I was surprised he did not try it himself. I do not think either Peter or Nathan is dead. Nathan likely split off from Peter and flew away from the explosion, and Peter surely is not given up his ability to regenerate.

Nathan as a character has really taken off during the second half of this season, and it would be a shame to have a character with so much potential taken out of the series so soon. Hopefully, he will return sometime next season, possibly as a villain despite his redemptive actions this week.

Still, it was a strong season ending and one that delivered on everything it promised, but little else.

Grade: B+

— Stalked by Wilson Garrett

Heroes, May 14 May 17, 2007

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Last week: On a largely Sylar-centric installment, the hero-killing madman visited his mother … and murdered her. Hiro tracked him down but failed to kill him, narrowly escaping, albeit with a broken sword. Elsewhere, more heroes converged on New York City, setting the stage for what could be a thrilling conclusion to the season.

Recap: “Landslide”

Our favorite heroes continued converging on New York City. Knowing of Peter Petrelli’s vision of the near future, Mr. Bennet ordered Peter, his daughter and Ted to go to Nebraska in order to avoid Peter and Ted (or Sylar) going nuclear in the Big Apple. Sylar, using his acquired super-hearing, eavesdrops and foils the plan, alerting the FBI to of fugitive Ted’s whereabouts. Though Peter and Claire escape capture, the feds apprehend Ted. That makes him a sitting duck for Sylar, who interrupts a late-episode transport, kills Ted, and absorbs his explosive power.

Elsewhere in Manhattan, Hiro and Ando encounter Hiro’s intimidating father, who reveals his support for his son’s journey. He confesses to have known about Hiro’s power, and he begins to train his son on the ways of the sword. After the training session is complete, Hiro learns that Ando, who grew impatient, went after Sylar by himself.

Mikah was manipulated by Linderman and Candice into using his power to commit voter fraud to ensure Nathan Petrelli’s election to Congress. His parents (D.L. and Nikki/Jessica) used their superpowers to break into Linderman’s headquarters to confront the gray-haired billionaire behind it all. The encounter left D.L. shot and Linderman dead.

Nathan Petrelli continued to deal with his moral dilemma, which became even more difficult after Linderman cured his paralyzed wife at the beginning of the episode. Given the content of his victory speech, it appears the congressman has accepted the sacrifice of the upcoming disaster.

Parkman and Mr. Bennet (HRG) broke into Primatech HQ to eliminate the tracking device. They’re in shock when they find out it’s a 5-year-old girl being protected by Mohinder.

The episode ends with Nathan celebrating victory, Peter and Claire looking helpless, and Sylar looking over NYC, whispering a potentially prophetic, “Boom.”

Review:
“Heroes” continues to turn in stellar installments, one right after the other. This second part of the three-chapter season finale didn’t disappoint, either. It held plenty of exciting plot twists while also setting up would should be one heck of a season finale. I can’t wait.

Grade: A

Next week: The first season concludes — but will it go out with a “bang”? Not if our heroes can help it.

— Stalked by Charlie Cox

Heroes, May 7 May 8, 2007

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Previously: A glimpse into the future showed Hiro and Ando what will happen if they fail; Nathan sent Claire away to help win the election; Sylar killed Isaac; and Mohinder teamed up with Company Man Thompson.

Recap: “The Hard Part”

Hiro, Ando and Sylar:
Back from the past, Hiro has a comic book that describes what will happen in the future, but it contains only images. Meanwhile, Sylar uses Isaac’s power and discovers his destiny to be the New York bomb. He calls Mohinder for help, saying he has no motive to kill so many, but hangs up on him when Mohinder starts to call 911.

Hiro and Ando go to Isaac’s studio, see his dead body and start to follow Sylar to his mother’s apartment. Once he is there, Sylar fixes his father’s clock as the mother and son argue. He wants her to tell him that he does not need to be special, but she doesn’t and tells him he could be anything, even President. In response, Sylar demonstrates his powers for his mother, but he begins to use his telekinesis to hurl his mother’s snow globes at her. He apologizes, but his mom is terrified.

Ando and Hiro debate killing Sylar, and Hiro refuses to since he is seeking forgiveness from his mother. Ando tells him he must stop Sylar and shows Hiro a picture from the comic book that shows Ando dead at Sylar’s hands. Inside, Sylar begs his mother to tell him why he would kill so many people, but she demands that he leave. They struggle, and he ends up stabbing her. As she begins to collapse, time freezes and Hiro enters, drawing his sword. Suddenly, time starts up again and Sylar demands that Hiro kill him, or else. Ando runs in to help, but suddenly Hiro teleports them away.

Towards the end of the episode, Sylar paints the New York explosion with his mother’s blood and says he could be anything, even President.

The Petrelli Family:
Peter tries to stop Claire from leaving town by talking about fate. He explains how he is destined to explode, and she mentions Ted. Later, Peter, Nathan, and Claire talk about tracking down Ted, but when Claire and Peter leave Nathan calls Linderman and says that they have a problem. At Nathan’s office, Peter and Claire look in on a meeting between Nathan and Thompson, and both pairs have conversations about doing the right thing.

Back at the Petrelli Manor, Claire and Peter resolve to kill Ted and stop the bomb. At the same time, Mrs. Petrelli tries to put things in perspective for Nathan, comparing the World War II bombs to the New York bomb. She tells Nathan he needs faith, and reveals she is in league with Linderman and others.

Jessica and DL:
DL yells at Jessica for letting Micah go with Linderman, and as he leaves Niki encourages Jessica to follow. It turns out that Linderman has been tracking the two of them all their lives, and DL believes Linderman manipulated them into a relationship.

Micah and Candice:
Candice, the shapeshifter, talks to Linderman and then disguises herself as Niki to keep Micah pacified, but he is suspicious. Later, Micah tries to escape from the hotel room, but it turns out that Candice can make people see whatever they want and is not just a shapeshifter, making it impossible for Micah to escape.

Mohinder:
Mohinder turns down Thompson’s job offer, claiming the Company should work with him because they stole his father’s notes. Thompson leads Mohinder to Molly Walker, the daughter of Sylar’s first onscreen victim. Thompson says Molly is sick and the disease is preventing her from accessing her power. It turns out it’s the same disease that killed Mohinder’s sister. Thompson says Molly is the only one who can stop Sylar. When Mohinder goes to examine Molly, he finds out she is the new tracking system, as her gift allows her to find people wherever they are. Mohinder, however, cannot find a cure, but Molly gives him a piece of paper with a star on it for protection against Sylar. But this somehow reveals the key to the cure — Mohinder’s own blood — which contains antibodies to the virus.

The End Moment:
In the Kirby Plaza in New York City, Claire and Peter run into Mr. Bennet, Parkman and Ted, who are trying to take out the new tracking system, Molly. The episode ends with Peter absorbing Ted’s power and barely controlling it.

Review:

The creators have said the finale comes in three installments, with this episode being the first. Consequently, this episode feels a lot like plot set-up more than anything else. The writers are trying to move all the pieces to the right places on the board, so to speak, but not much really happens. A few loose ends are revisited, such as Molly Walker, but that’s about it, event-wise.

On the other hand, the characters continue to get more complicated. Hiro expresses his conflicted nature, as he is torn over whether or not he could or should kill Sylar. Nathan is unsure if working with Linderman will really save as many lives as Linderman and his mother say, while Sylar tries to seek help from his mother, who only pushes Sylar closer and closer to the edge. We also see where Sylar first got the idea to take the disguise of President Nathan in the future.

Grade: B+

Next week:
Linderman tells Micah he will save many lives, and Sylar prepares to blow up New York.

— Stalked by Wilson Garrett

Heroes, April 30 May 1, 2007

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Previously: As the heroes try to stop Sylar and the Company, Hiro and Ando jump five years into the future.

Recap of “Five Years Gone”

In the future, Hiro and Ando meet future Hiro, who tells the two time travelers he tried to change the world by having them save the cheerleader, but they failed. Parkman leads a raid to capture Future Hiro, but ends up grabbing our Hiro as Ando and Future Hiro escape.

Future Hiro tells Ando that after the New York explosion, the world became a dark place, and he is now hunted as a terrorist. In order to rescue Hiro, Future Hiro teleports himself and Ando to Las Vegas to find Peter.

The pair go to a strip club looking for Peter’s girlfriend, Jessica, who is now a stripper. She does not give up Peter’s location, but tells where Mr. Bennet has gone. She goes to the bar as the pair leave, and Peter is revealed to have been there the whole time. As the TV shows a remembrance video for the explosion caused by Sylar, he says he wants no part of their quest.

Meanwhile, Parkman interrogates our Hiro, and he cannot get any information because has no information on the past five years. Parkman calls Nathan, who is now the President. In the Oval Office, Mohinder and Nathan discuss how they let the explosion happen, and afterwards dedicated themselves to stopping the super-people from operating. They cannot find a “cure,” and Nathan proposes genocide in order to preserve the human race, as the super-people are causing disasters all over the country.

Mr. Bennet and Hana meet with a family and give them relocation instructions. Hiro begs Mr. Bennet for help, explaining they saved Claire. At the same time in Isaac’s flat, Mohinder and Parkman try to piece Future Hiro’s time map together.

Claire, waitressing and going by the name Sandra, talks with her fiancé and watches Nathan on TV. Mr. Bennet sits at one of her tables and tells her to run and leave her fiancé. On the TV, Homeland Security rounds up “undocumented individuals” as part of the Linderman Act.

Parkman finds Future Hiro and Ando and manages to incapacitate Hiro. Just as they are about to be brought in, Peter rescues them using telekinesis (Sylar) and teleportation (Hiro). It turns out Parkman and Mr. Bennet have been working together to save the harmless super-powered people, including Parkman’s son, and capturing the dangerous ones. But Parkman betrays and kills both Hana and Mr. Bennet after finding Claire’s location. At the diner, Parkman confronts Claire.

Mohinder interrogates our Hiro about the time map, while Peter tells Ando that he was killed in the New York explosion. According to Peter, Ando’s death caused Hiro to want to change the past.

Back in Isaac’s flat, Mohinder tells Nathan about Future Hiro’s plan, but Nathan wants to move ahead with the genocide. Mohinder says he will help, and Nathan orders Mohinder to start with the young Hiro who Parkman has captured.

Parkman brings Nathan to Claire, but it turns out that Sylar has been imitating Nathan the whole time. He then uses his power to kill Claire.

Peter and Niki talk, and she yells at him for having to fix everything. Peter tells her he caused the New York explosion, and Nathan lied to protect him. He and Hiro go off to fix everything.

As the bells toll during “Nathan’s” address to the nation, Peter and Future Hiro move into rescue Hiro. They do not stop time, as Peter says he has not had a good fight in a long time. Parkman prepares to shoot them dead if they come in, and Mohinder prepares to give Hiro a lethal injection. In a twist, he administers it to the Haitian.

Future Hiro is shot as he tries to help Hiro and Ando time travel, and Nathan attacks Peter. Sylar reveals himself, and the two begin to fight using what appear to be Ted’s powers. Suddenly, Hiro and Ando jump back to the past.

Review:

This was the best episode of the show all season. When the show came back from hiatus last week, it made significant improvements over the rest of the season. The acting was better, the special effects were great, and the plot was moving at rapid speed. This week, all of those things were back and even better than the week before.

This show used a common comic book storytelling technique: setting the heroes in the future. Hiro and Ando were where all the main characters are going to end up if the New York explosion happens, and it’s safe to say that none of them are in a better place, except maybe the dead ones.

All of the characters are much, much darker and are willing to betray one another in order to get what they want. It’s a giant “What If?” episode, and the glimpse into the future raises the stakes for what happens at the season’s conclusion.

The episode features the coolest moments of the show so far. Seeing Peter in full control of his powers makes his fight scenes visually some of the coolest things the show has seen so far. The show legitimately shocked me for the first time when Nathan was revealed to be Sylar in disguise.

But the best part of the whole episode was to see how much the actors have improved during the course of the series. Peter, Parkman and Nathan in particular showed just how great they can be on this show. The darker turns in Peter and Nathan’s characters were interesting to watch, and Parkman played the dark change in his character with great subtlety, making the changes more believable.

Grade: A+

Next Week: Three episodes are left. The heroes start to move to New York; Sylar is reunited with his mother; a little girl has the power to stop Sylar.

— Stalked by Wilson Garrett

Heroes, April 23 April 24, 2007

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Previously on “Heroes”: The Company captured Mr. Bennet and Parkman; Sylar attacked Peter and Mohinder; Hiro and Ando were in the future.

“.07%” recap

Mr. Bennet is still in lock-up and gets a visit from the shapeshifter, Candice, disguised as Claire, before the mysterious company man shows up. Later, Mr. Bennet explains his escape plan to Parkman.

With Bennet’s instruction, Parkman knocks out a guard and takes his pass. Parkman breaks into Ted’s room as an alarm is triggered. Mr. Bennet instructs Ted via Matt on how to use his power to take out the alarms. They break Mr. Bennet out of his cell and head to a café and debate what to do next. Parkman wants to take down Linderman, but Mr. Bennet wants to take out the Company’s tracking system.

While the escape was going on, Mr. Linderman leads Nathan into a gallery full of Isaac’s work. As Linderman speaks of saving the world, he reveals he has the power to heal. He tells Nathan of how he was part of a team of super-powered people until other started to use their abilities for personal gain.

Linderman explains that the explosion in New York will give people a united sense of hope through fear, and it will be Nathan leading the people following the tragedy. A painting shows Nathan standing in the Oval Office, but Nathan walks out on Linderman and heads home.

In Mohinder’s apartment, Sylar attacks Peter and begins to cut open his head. Suddenly, Peter starts using all of his acquired abilities to take out Sylar. That is, until Sylar send a piece of glass into Peter’s head.

Mohinder manages to knock out Sylar. When he wakes up, he gets Isaac’s address, who is preparing to meet his end. At the same time, Mohinder takes Peter’s body to his mother’s house.

Nathan returns and cradles his brother’s body, but his mom tells him they have to hide the body until after the election. But when Claire walks in, she is able to wake Peter up after removing a piece of glass from his brain.

Meanwhile, the differences between Niki and Jessica are becoming indistinct, and D.L. does not like it. She goes to meet with Linderman. He wants to use Micah as part of his plans.

Linderman meets Micah in front of his house, giving him the opportunity to save the world. But it turns out that Candice was disguised as Niki/Jessica to make Micah feel safe. As Micah leaves with Linderman, Niki/Jessica pulls up and wonders where her son has gone.

Later, the mysterious Company man meets with Mohinder to discuss stopping Sylar.

In his studio, Sylar confronts Isaac. Sylar impales Isaac with his paintbrushes. Isaac seems at peace, though, as he claims he has already painted the key to defeating Sylar. He dies in peace, and Sylar is later shown using Isaac’s abilities.

Five years in the future, Hiro and Ando look out over a destroyed New York. They set off to find future Isaac, but instead they find future Hiro.

Review:

What a great episode of “Heroes,” and what a great way to return from a hiatus. The acting has dramatically improved over previous episodes, as the cast seems more comfortable onscreen interacting with one another. Isaac’s character especially seemed to finally fit in with the show, but unfortunately tonight might be the last night we see him. But with the superhero genre, you never know if he might come back.

The action this episode was great as well. In fact, at times it felt like there was too much going on to keep up. We had the escape from the Company, Sylar fighting half the cast, and Linderman’s dense explanation of how he was going to save the world. Linderman was the highlight of tonight’s episode, channeling Ozymandias from Alan Moore’s famous Watchmen comic.

The only problem with this episode was the long hiatus leading up to it. Even after watching the recap at the beginning and watching a few episodes on the Web site, I had trouble remembering certain things from the past few episodes. A few reruns during the hiatus certainly would have helped coming back into the show. But that was not a fault of the episode as much as it was a fault of the scheduling. This was a great episode, and next week looks even better.

Next: An episode set five years in the future shows what will happen if the Heroes fail to stop the New York explosion.

Grade: A

— Stalked by Wilson Garrett

Heroes April 9, 2007

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Where have all the “Heroes” gone?

I go to turn on my TV every Monday at 9 p.m. here in Kentucky, and what do I see? The guy who used to be Bobby in the cartoon “Bobby’s World” on the TV hosting a show about opening a bunch of briefcases.

One hour? OK, I can deal with that. But does there really need to be a marathon that takes up the time that could be devoted to replaying episodes of “Heroes”? Good ones or bad ones, this is a hit show that I want to catch up on without having to shell out more than $35 dollars for on iTunes. I already did that for “Lost.”

But, alas, the hiatus seems to be here to stay and April 23rd cannot get here soon enough!

So what am I looking forward to?

I’m ready for these individuals to become a team. There are two ways I see this happening. The first is the typical one, with them banding together like the X-Men or the Avengers into a superhero powerhouse team. That would be fine, and seems to be the easiest way to take the show.

The other way would be to have them be a team that never meets each other in an organized way. This approach was the premise behind Grant Morrison’s Seven Soldiers maxi-series for DC Comics in 2005. Personally, I prefer this method. It allows the characters to stay a little more grounded in reality, and keeps the storylines separate but still connecting.

I’m hoping that Niki/Jessica will die. I don’t like the storyline. She seems worthless, as does her family. D.L. is the only interesting one, so kill of the mom and let him become a loner or a single father. It would be much more interesting.

More Nathan/Hiro scenes. Pure gold.

Isaac is going to die. The signs are all there. He was shown dead when Hiro went to the future in one of the early episodes, and it seems like he has painted his own demise.

Linderman seems to have collected enough of Isaac’s paintings to maintain the foreshadowing aspect of his powers, so he may even be superfluous at this point. Plus, it would make Sylar — or possibly Peter — a more credible villain.

Not only will a Hero die, I’m betting New York gets blown away despite the best efforts of the fledgling superheroes. Hiro has already seen it happen once, and in the last episode he saw the fallout. The recovery effort after such destruction would make for an interesting story, and it seems to have more storyline potential for most of the cast, especially Peter and Nathan.

That’s all I have for this week. I encourage readers to leave their own thoughts and predictions.

— Stalked by Wilson Garrett

Heroes, March 5 March 6, 2007

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Previously: Hiro is powerless; Jessica is in control; Parkman’s enlisted; Simone is shot; and Mr. Bennet sacrifices his memory and safety for his daughter.

Recap for “Parasite”

Hiro: Hiro can’t seem to get inside Linderman’s hotel. Hiro runs into Nathan outside the hotel, and Nathan offers to sneak Hiro past security. He delivers Isaac’s painting and finds the sword, but when an alarm goes off and Ando, dressed as a cop, saves them. As the rest of security comes in, Hiro and Ando are transported to the future, which is a desolate wasteland.

Mr. Bennet: He does not remember what happened to Claire, and is not allowed to go after her and the Haitian. Parkman, meanwhile, is working for Bennet’s company to see if Bennet is lying, albeit against his will. In a hotel, Mrs. Bennet explains to Mr. Bennet of his plan to send Claire away, which has been wiped from his memory. A new female partner shows up to take Mr. Bennet on a new assignment. After meeting with Isaac, Mr. Bennet returns to his wife and they talk about Claire, only for her to turn out to be the new partner in disguise. Three members of Bennet’s company come in to confront him.

Nathan Petrelli and Niki/Jessica: The FBI confronts Nathan, demanding he wear a wire during his upcoming meeting with Linderman. Peter is eavesdropping, and after a conversation with Nathan Peter takes off. Meanwhile, Jessica, still in control, has been called into Linderman’s hotel. She loads a gun and heads off presumably to kill Nathan. She is later shown killing the FBI agents Nathan met. Niki, back in control, warns Nathan of Linderman’s plan to kill him. She warns Nathan to take whatever deal Linderman offers. He refuses, saying he’d rather kill him. He takes Niki’s gun and and knocks her out.

Nathan then heads downstairs and meets Mr. Linderman, played by Malcolm McDowell, in the hotel kitchen. Linderman asks Nathan if he is happy, and goes on a discourse on the difference between happiness and meaning. Nathan pulls out the gun, and Linderman explains he knows all about the other super-powered people out there. He promises Nathan that in two years he will be in the White House, and Nathan puts the gun down.

Sylar and Mohinder: Sylar gets to see the entire list on Mohinder’s computer. He calls Isaac, but doesn’t get an answer. Mohinder suddenly drugs Sylar, revealing that he knows he is the murderer. Later, Mohinder has Sylar chained up and prepares to shoot Sylar in the head. Sylar plays mind games with Mohinder, and Mohinder ends up sparing Sylar’s life, but painfully withdraws spinal fluid from his neck. The fluid helps with the list, but Sylar breaks free from his bonds.

Claire: Claire is with the Haitian, who will not let her contact Peter Petrelli. She steals his passport and ID so he cannot get past airport security and she walks off smiling. She shows up at Peter’s apartment and finds Peter’s mother, who is working with the Haitian.

Isaac: When the police come by asking questions, Simone suddenly walks through the door with Mr. Bennet, and it turns out Bennet’s new partner is a shape shifter using Simone as a disguise. They tell him to keep painting, and when he later uses heroin and paints, he seeing himself murdered by Sylar.

Big Reveal: Peter shows up at Mohinder’s apartment, where Sylar attacks him and begins cutting his skull open.

Review: “Heroes” continues to offer the resolution of some mysteries in exchange for introducing new ones. And the formula works for the most part, although it seems as if a lot is thrown at the viewer this week. Mr. Bennet has a new partner and is caught by the Company; Hiro gets his sword and suddenly appears in the future; Peter and Nathan’s mother has been working with the Haitian. And Mr. Linderman seems to know everything. Will all of these new mysteries be answered by the end of the season? Probably not. But some probably will, and when they are it will undoubtedly reveal how closely related each of the disconnected storylines really are.

While this episode was pretty good, I have one big problem with “Heroes,” which I think continues to drag down this show. The Niki/Jessica storyline is just boring. They dropped it for a few weeks, and the quality went way up. I understand Ali Larter may be an attractive woman and probably the show’s biggest name, but her character seems pointless and her story does not feel like it fits with the rest of the show. I’m not a big fan of writers killing off major characters on an ensemble cast, but I feel like unless something important happens with this storyline soon, I won’t mind a death. Until then, I can only hope that she disappears for another few weeks.

Next time: It’s time to save the world — on April 23rd.

Grade: B+

— Stalked by Wilson Garrett

Heroes, Feb. 26 February 27, 2007

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Previously on “Heroes”: Nothing went right for Mr. Bennet. Peter started to show control over his powers, only to be abandoned by his mentor. Hiro decided to go it alone, and Sylar’s murderous rampage continued.

Recap for this week’s episode, “Company Man”

Present:

Matt Parkman and Ted Sprague break into Mr. Bennet’s home and confront him about his work. Cut to a black and white flashback. Meanwhile, Parkman uses his powers to look into Claire’s head. Claire, Matt and Ted demand answers from Mr. Bennet, and Ted pulls a gun on him. Bennet mentally commands Parkman to shoot Claire, and he does!

Bennet keeps talking telepathically with Parkman, and they manipulate Ted into thinking she’s dead. Upstairs, Bennet tells a recovered Claire that he has been trying to keep her powers hidden from his associates. Otherwise, they would take her away.

Matt and Mr. Bennet leave the house under false pretenses and meet up with the Haitain. At the house, Ted discovers Claire is fine and attacks her as Mrs. Bennet discovers Claire’s power. Tied up, Claire’s mom explains she has faith in her husband, and that faith pays off when he returns and convinces Ted to release his family. As Mr. Bennet starts to tell Ted why he has powers, Mr. Bennet’s mysterious associate comes in and shoots Ted, who starts to go nuclear, burning the house down.

Parkman comes in and gets Mr. Bennet out, as Claire tries to administer a tranquilizer to get Ted under control. The house suddenly explodes, and a charred Claire walks out. The associate looks on, and later talks to Mr. Bennet about how that Haitain has been hiding Claire, which is a lie. Parkman and Sprague are both captives of the company Bennet works for, and it looks like Parkman is Bennet’s new partner.

Bennet is ordered to bring in Claire, but the next scene shows Bennet driving Claire to the same bridge from his flashback. The Haitain is there, Mr. Bennet orders the Haitain to shoot him in the stomach, and take his memories so Claire can get away.

Past:

15 years ago: Mr. Bennet gets his job doing whatever it is he does, and it turns out his first partner was Claude, the Invisible Man.

14 years ago: Bennet and Claude meet on a roof, where Bennet talks to Hiro’s dad. Hiro’s father makes Mr. Bennet adopt a baby Claire, and warns him not to get too close to her. Later that year, Bennet is with an unnamed associate and they talk about Mr. Bennet’s family and how his wife is starting to figure out stuff, and the associate introduces Mr. Bennet to the Haitain.

7 years ago: Mr. Bennet is with Claude and they go to “look into a security breach,” and it turns out Claude is hiding another powered individual. They come to a bridge, and Mr. Bennet shoots Claude as he goes invisible and seems to fall off the bridge.

3 years ago: Claire helps her dad pick out glasses, and Mr. Bennet ends up telling Claire she is adopted.

Grade: A-

Review: This episode is what I was talking about when I said this show had potential. The focused storyline is extremely sharp, as we only get the Bennet family, Parkman and Ted. Everything in the past few episodes has built up to this confrontation, and the audience gets a fair amount of answers.

The action that took place in the present was exciting, the effects were great for a TV show, and the character development was perfect. Take, for example, Mr. Bennet, who went from the seeming antagonist of the series in the first few episodes to being a hero himself, sacrificing everything for his daughter.

The other great part of this episode was the way other storylines came together in the flashbacks. Claude, who has been with Peter, appears as Mr. Bennet’s old partner, and Hiro’s father is clearly part of whatever shadowy organization for which Mr. Bennet works. Everything is connected, and that theme is expressed in a single storyline.

Next week: Simone is alive — so much for “Someone flies, Someone dies” from last week; Hiro gets his sword; and we meet Linderman, who is apparently behind it all.

 — Stalked by Wilson Garrett

Heroes, Feb. 19 February 20, 2007

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Previously on “Heroes”: Hiro is trapped in a closet; Parkman is pushed out a window, Peter lands on a taxi, Sylar wants to tag along, and Mrs. Bennet can’t remember …

Summary for “Unexpected”

Claire: Mrs. Bennet’s memory seems to be on the fritz, and she has had to visit a neurologist. In the middle of a talk with Claire, she collapses. She calls her dad for help, and in the hospital she tells a doctor that the Haitian has been wiping out her mother’s memory. When her father meets her in the hospital, they argue over his actions and she walks off.

Mr. Bennet and Isaac: Mr. Bennet meets with Isaac, who tells him Peter will be responsible for the New York explosion. He gives Isaac a gun and tells him to “Save the World.”

Mohinder: Mohinder has been duped into bringing Sylar with him to the mountains. They meet up with a woman who has super-hearing, and she can hear Sylar’s quickening heartbeat. Later, Sylar gives Mohinder a creepy pep talk about finding the others heroes. Of course, Sylar goes after the woman with super-hearing that night, and when he and Mohinder go back the next day, they find her dead.

Hiro: Hiro meets up with a cop while Ando gets a gun pulled on him by the girl from the hotel. The cop takes Hiro to confront Hope, and the cop and the girl have a gunfight. Hiro shows he still has his power, but leaves Ando when he realizes it is too dangerous to drag him along.

The Radioactive Man and Matt: Whoa! Ted’s powers kill all the plant life around his wife’s grave. Later in the graveyard, Ted meets up with Hannah and a confused Matt. Hannah and Ted want Matt to help them confront Mr. Bennet. They show up at Bennet’s house, and the trio want answers.

Peter: Awesome training scene with the Invisible Man on a rooftop, and later Mr. Bennet attacks both of them. Peter dives off the building with Claude and they fly across the city. Claude yells at Peter for exposing him to Mr. Bennet and abandons him. Peter accuses Isaac of ratting him out. They argue and Isaac accidentally shoots Simone!

Review

What an improvement over the past few weeks. The different storylines were tight, focused, and I really felt like the plot was progressing for the first time in weeks.

We have the Radioactive Man, Ted Sprague, back after a few minor appearances since his escape, and based on this week’s ending and next week’s preview, it looks like we will finally be getting some answers about Mr. Bennet’s agenda. Peter’s story also progressed nicely. The training scene was intense, and his escape with Claude was one of the season’s highlights.

Meanwhile, all the aimless wandering Hiro and Ando have been going through during the past three episodes paid off with a great character moment, and a exciting cameo by Stan Lee, one of the most important comic book creators of all time. The Sylar/Mohinder storyline kept me in suspense the whole time. The last five minutes were intense, and I cannot wait to see where all of these stories are moving.

Grade: A-

Next week: Questions will be answered. Where did Claire come from? Who does Mr. Bennet work for? And the Radioactive Man burns.

— Stalked by Wilson Garrett

Heroes, Feb. 12 February 13, 2007

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Previously on “Heroes”: Ordinary people with extraordinary abilities. Sylar attacked the Bennets. Parkman lost his job. Claire met her mother, and last night she met her father.

“Heroes,” episode 15: “Run!”

Claire: Claire’s birth mother, Meredith, calls Nathan and tells him they need to talk. With Nathan’s election coming up, he offers her a hundred grand in exchange for her silence on his illegitimate daughter, Claire. Meanwhile, Claire has trouble at home with her adopted parents. Her father finds out she was not at the aquarium last week, so he grounds her. Later, Claire calls Meredith who tells her she found her real father, but she is reluctant to give details. When Claire goes to visit Meredith again, she finds that her dad only wanted to offer money and Meredith has decided to head to Mexico. Crushed, Claire walks off as her mother takes a camera phone snapshot.

After leaving the trailer, Claire returns home to find that her adopted mother has no memory of her.

Nathan: Meanwhile, Nathan’s mother discourages Nathan from going to visit Meredith and helping Claire. But Nathan denies his mother’s wishes and goes to visit Meredith anyway. They talk about old times; he gives her a hundred grand and wonders where Claire is. Unbeknownst to either of them, Claire listens from outside the trailer. When he goes to leave, Claire throws a rock at the car window. She runs off, but Nathan looks back and is visibly upset that he did not get to meet his daughter.

Jessica/Niki and Matt Parkman: Having been put on suspension, Matt has taken up work as a bodyguard for Linderman’s lawyer. At the same time, Jessica loads a gun and talks to the mysterious Mr. Linderman. She stalks Matt while he plays bodyguard. Matt realizes that something bad is about to go down, and he discovers that the lawyer has run off with $2 million of Linderman’s money. Jessica and Matt both draw their guns. Jessica fires as Matt tries to protect his client, but Matt gets the drop on Jessica. She turns the tables and throws him out a window and he lands on some scaffolding. He crawls back in to find his client dead on the floor as the police run into the building. Later, Matt finds a bag, and while leaving overhears the other officers calling him a joke in their thoughts. He slides the bag in his pocket and walks out.

Jessica, meanwhile, receives a message from Linderman along with a picture of Nathan.

Hiro: Hiro and his friend Ando are back in Vegas trying to sneak into Mr. Linderman’s hotel. Inside, Ando becomes infatuated with a distraught showgirl named Hope. Ando and a reluctant Hiro volunteer their help to get her bag from an abusive boyfriend in exchange for information on Linderman. Disguised as hotel staff, they infiltrate a hotel room. Hiro, scared, tries to get Ando to leave but fails. Ando remains in the room, while Hiro discovers that showgirl was lying about her intentions. Ando, meanwhile, retrieves the bag and gives it to the girl. He runs off with her, not knowing that she locked Hiro in a closet. When the door opens, Hiro comes face to face with the “abusive boyfriend,” a cop.

Mohinder: Mohinder tries to get in touch with people on his father’s list, but no one seems to listen to him. Only one person, a man named Zane Taylor, wants his help. But Sylar gets to Zane first. When Mohinder shows up, Syalr poses as Zane. Sylar gets philosophical with Mohinder, and shows off his newly-acquired ability to liquefy metal with a touch. Sylar gives Mohinder a DNA sample from Zane’s corpse, and Mohinder reveals there are possibly hundreds more like him. Sylar begs to go with Mohinder

Review:

Let’s start with the good. The Claire storyline continues to be one of the most interesting, as it delves into both her character and it connects to several of the other storylines running through the episode. This week we got great moments with Claire and her parents, both biological and adopted. And it seems that Mrs. Bennet is suffering from amnesia as a result of her husband’s tampering, an interesting side effect that will likely have an impact Claire’s home life and Mr. Bennet’s conscience.

The other exciting part of this episode was the action. For a while, Jessica/Niki and Matt’s stories both have been the least exciting part of the show for me. But tonight, a lot of the buildup was paid off in a suspenseful confrontation, which developed both the characters and added new mysteries. Will Jessica/Niki continue to work as a hitman for Linderman? What exactly did Matt find? What will happen between Jessica/Niki and Nathan? All of these questions will make for some interesting episodes in the coming weeks.

But now the bad. First, where were Peter and Claude? Their story was a focal point last week, and to not capitalize on that momentum is a mistake. And speaking of absences, there was little progression on the whole “New York is going to be a crater in a few weeks” storyline. Hopefully the show will pick up this plot thread next week.

The biggest disappointment continues to be the Hiro storyline. Once one of the central characters on the show, Hiro’s storyline continues to feel isolated from what is going on with the other characters. He continues to get sidetracked from his mission to get the samurai sword, and while his scenes are funny, Hiro’s character can be much more than a comedy act. I like Hiro. I liked where he was going a few weeks ago. I want to see him step up and be a major player in coming weeks. More than any other character, he remains the most sympathetic, and the audience wants to see the underdog succeed.

Last but not least, where is Linderman? This guy is a major player in the lives of our characters, but we have yet to see him onscreen. There better be a reason he has not been revealed yet, and I cannot see the payoff to this reveal being worth the wait. I hope I’m wrong.

“Heroes” has its ups and downs with every episode. As a comic book fan, I desperately want to see this show reach its full potential, but I have yet to see an episode that is as good as I know this show can be.

Grade: B

Next week: Someone meets their destiny. “Someone flies, Someone dies.” The radioactive man Ted Sprague returns, and Mr. Bennet yells, “ I only wanted to protect my family!”

–Stalked by Wilson Garrett