Here are now, at the finale of another season of “Heroes.” Entertain us…or, at the very least, leave us happy ’til the beginning of the next season, right? With the return of Bryan Fuller to the fold, the show has been working its way slowly but surely out of the creative doledrums in which it had found itself, but does anyone even care anymore?
It’s a fair question, particularly when you look back at how few people are commenting on this blog nowadays. Once upon a time, we actually used to get a discussion going about the episode of the week, but if you look back over the course of the past several weeks, we’ve been averaging no more than 2 or 3 comments per ep, with one week receiving absolutely no comments! I figured Fuller’s return would kickstart the blog, but has it really reached a point where even the return of one of the show’s seminal writers (if, indeed, a show only in its third season can be said to have such a thing) can’t stir much in the way of conversation? I’m not even taking it personally anymore. I’m really just surprised.
Frankly, I feel like the show’s been relatively strong in recent weeks. Are there really so few people who feel the same way?
Last week ended with Zeljko looking darned surprised about Sylar surviving a knife blade to the back of the skull, but given the amount of shapeshifting Sylar had been doing, I wasn’t terribly shocked. Since he’s now able to move his size and shape around in a rather dramatic fashion, I figured his Achilles’ heel might not be where we last left it. I was, however, wondering whether we’d see Sylar slaughter Zeljko immediately or if he’d toy with him for awhile first. Nice touch, taking on his form to discredit him, ruin his reputation, and get him thrown into prison with…HRG?
Yep. HRG, Claire, and Mama Petrelli are driving along outside of Arlington, VA, when Mama has one of her famous dreams (“It’s Nathan. He’s in trouble.”) almost simultaneous to HRG realizing that they’re on the verge of being caught. He sends them off together while he pretends to fall into the trap that he knows has been set for him, but while it’s no surprise that Mama ditches Claire in order to follow the events of her dream, namely that Matt Parkman saves Nathan, it is a little shocking that Claire actually does what Mama tells her, going up to Nathan’s office. Fortunately, Claire falls back into her usual ways by completely falling for Sylar’s Nathan impression, while the real Nathan takes the opportunity to stumble from his office to Peter’s apartment and seek brotherly assistance.
Hiro’s nosebleed from last week has got Ando worried, but it doesn’t stop Hiro from still demanding that his time-stopping ability is the only way to save the day and infiltrate Building 26. He does pause momentarily when Ando suggests that his head might explode (his expression when he said “Really?” was priceless), but in the end, a hero’s got to do what a hero’s got to do, even if it does end up leading to blood streaming out of that hero’s ears. It was a sad but somewhat touching moment when Hiro explained that he was basing his sleep habits on those of Bruce Wayne, but even with Mohinder’s assurances that he absolutely positively could not use his powers again, I dare say we all knew he’d be using them, anyway, no matter what the cost.
The scene between HRG and Zeljko in the cell was a nice one. Though it’s a cliche, the hoary old “you are in my position” joke still made me chuckle, as did Zeljko’s reaction when they suddenly noticed that the door was wide open as a result of Hiro’s machinations.
I was glad that, after Sylar screwed up by using the wrong hand to sign in, there was precious little attempt to pretend that he might still manage to get away with his portrayal of Nathan. I mean, c’mon, even Claire isn’t that stupid. Instead, we just got a reveal of “Claire” answering HRG’s phone call, leading up to Sylar saying in his most evil voice, “Because it’s me.” Sylar’s scene with Claire gave him the opportunity to make with the supervillain schtick that he does so well. I laughed out loud when he mistakenly referred to Claire’s brother as “Larry” (seriously, I have to look up Lyle’s name every time he makes an appearance. He’s just that memorable), but even funnier was his reply to Claire’s assurances that she would continue to try and kill him: “Everybody needs a hobby.”
I admit I was a little surprised to see Nathan reveal his abilities to the President’s right-hand man, but they had been friends since they were kids, so I guess he figured that, if he can trust anyone, it’s this guy. Similarly, I didn’t expect that the big throwdown between Nathan, Peter, and Sylar would occur after Claire had been thrown out of the room and into the hallway. And, okay, here’s the trifecta: I was actually surprised that Sylar killed Nathan. I mean, I knew we were going to see someone die by episode’s end, but…well, truth be told, I hadn’t really worked out who I thought it would be, but for some reason, I just didn’t figure it would be Nathan.
Matt Parkman, of course, was surprised to see Mama Petrelli greet him the moment he got off the bus, but it didn’t come anywhere close to the reaction we got from Mama when she happened upon the body of her son. Good lord, that was a hair-raising shriek. Not that it wasn’t warranted, given the circumstances, but, still, wow. In the end, she managed to get some semblance of revenge on the man who killed her son, with the assistance of Peter (“Bet you didn’t think I took that one from you”) and Parkman. And, hey, wasn’t it nice to see “Heroes” ripping off DC Comics for a change instead of Marvel…? If you don’t know what I’m referencing, then go pick up a copy of “Identity Crisis,” then compare Parkman’s actions to what Zatanna did to Dr. Light. It’s not exact by any stretch of the imagination, but the resemblance is more than enough to catch the eye of the average fanboy, mark my words.
So where will we be when Volume 5, “Redemption,” kicks off…? Well, of course, we already know from the teaser at the end of the episode that Tracy’s return is imminent (and that turning into water apparently doesn’t help your sanity any), so it’s a fair bet that Micah will rear his head again as well. Obviously, Sylar will be getting his memory back at some point, though if there’s anyone who didn’t know that was going to happen from the moment his memories were buried, I’d be very surprised. Clearly, Hiro’s fate is yet to be determined, though he’ll presumably at least survive ’til the season premiere. (How pissed would people be if they just came back for Season 3 and said, “Damn, I still can’t believe Hiro died two months ago…”) And as Greg Grunberg suggested in his interview with Bullz-Eye a few weeks ago, there’s no way that Matt Parkman’s going to be able to cope with his actions for the entire season. Most importantly, though, we’ve got a brand new Company to look forward to, which has a lot of potential.
See ya next season, folks. Or will I…?