The big news in Heroes-land this week was the apology from series creator Tim Kring for the slow pace of the season so far. Apparently, the show's writers "aren't very good" at telling love stories, and maybe the new characters were introduced "a little slowly" and also maybe keeping Hiro in ancient Japan for seven episodes was "not fucking very bright."
Those quotes aren't verbatim, incidentally.
I won't be too hard on Kring here, because frankly it's refreshing to see someone from a show be so up front about it's weaknesses. Nevertheless, Tim, it probably would have been handy if you'd noticed these things sometime before all those episodes were filmed.*
*Here of course I'm assuming that Tim Kring regularly reads this blog, as do countless other Hollywood writers and producers - an assumption I feel comfortable making, having seen no evidence to the contrary.
Which brings us to Episode 8, the dawning of a new age in the Heroes world. According to the omni-present ads, all the mysteries of the past 4 months would be revealed. Will this mark a turning point for the franchise, or has it slipped forever from the attention of today's ever-fickle youth? I hear the kids talking about that new Kelsey Grammer show a lot these days. Maybe that's stolen Heroes thunder.
Things We Learned: (after the jump)
The most critical revelations this episode centered around what happened to Peter Petrelli, namely, how did he go from blowing up over New York to a shipping container in Ireland? The somewhat convoluted answer is that he saved his brother, was kidnapped and imprisoned by the Company, escaped with Adam Monroe, then got handcuffed by the Haitian inside the shipping container and had his memory erased. Perhaps most importantly though was his time spent with Veronica Mars, who will now forever be celebrated as the person that finally gave Peter a haircut.
Speaking of Ms. Mars, for a girl who's spent her whole life in a prison, she sure know how to dress like a slut. Although that does confirm many of my deep-seated beliefs about women's prisons. Also, how's this for a prediction: her casual revelation that she'd never been swimming all but guarantees her a watery, possibly electrified grave at some point in the future. At a bare minimum, it will complicate her relationship with The Water Boy, who inside sources indicate will be a character in Season Three.
It's long been speculated whether or not Angela Petrelli has a power, and we saw a clue this episode: when she asked/told Heidi Petrelli not to reveal Nathan's "mental illness" to the world, the camera cut to her grasping Heidi by the elbow. Is it possible that Angela Petrelli has the power of persuasion? Maybe, although she doesn't appear to use it much – it probably would have come in handy during those police interrogations. At this point the only thing I'll state confidently is that she has the power to grasp elbows.
We learned a whisker more about Adam. He told Peter that he was 400 yrs old, which, if true, means he wasn't lying about his age when he met Hiro, and also that he hasn't traveled through time some how to the present. He could be lying of course, but Heroes hasn't jerked it's viewers around that much in terms of giving its viewers false information.
Where Heroes has jerked us viewers around is when it provides us tedious subplots centered around tangential characters. This episode we got some more backstory for the Honduran Wondertwins. Backstory which didn't explain anything that we hadn't already guessed: Maya kills people with her leaking black eyes, Alejandro heals them. WE. GET. IT.
Speaking of tangential characters, we also found out the specific fates of D.L., Niki and Micah, although I don't recall many plaintive cries from the fanbase asking for them. D.L. had his heroes death replaced with a lamer one, and Niki managed to develop another, trampier personality. Although I'm all in favor of television characters - and indeed females in general - having trampy extra personalities, this all felt like wasted screen time to me.
Is Bob running the same Company as Linderman, or are we dealing with a splinter group this season? Here's why I wonder:
1) Last episode Bob said that Linderman was Adam Monroe's disciple. Yet Adam claims to have been held prisoner by the Company for 30 years, stretching well back into Linderman's reign. Something isn't adding up here. The math, obviously.
2) Sylar was rescued and imprisoned by Candace, who was last seen working for the Company. But she reported to Thompson and Linderman. Is that why Sylar was being held in Mexico, and not Bob's woefully insecure holding area?
3) In Season 1, the Haitian was last seen on the run from the Company, after he gutshot Bennet and kidnapped Claire. Yet in this episode he's seen working for Bob's Company. This also raises another interesting question: what does the HR department of this organization look like? How the fuck do you handle paystubs when people on your staff have assumed names and are sometimes invisible?
As you can see, the Company sure is tasting a lot like New Coke this season. Hey, how well did that work out for Coca-Cola? I really should have looked that up before saving this.