Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Heroes, Week Five

Obligatory spoiler alert *** Obligatory spoiler alert *** Obligatory spoiler alert


I actually took notes while watching this episode, instead of relying on my memory to write this. I found this to be a big mistake, as A) I’m a horrible note taker & B) I suck at following the crappy notes that I do take. So, this week’s Highlights section will be less of a blow-by-blow, like last week, & more of a general overview. Let me know in the comments section which format you prefer, Loyal Readers – short & sweet or long & ridiculously detailed.

With this episode, the heroes are all starting to meet up: Future Ninja Hiro relays his vague (of course) message to Peter on the subway (“Save the Cheerleader, save the world.” No names. No telling Peter where to find her. Some messenger you are. Thanks for clearing things up, FN Hiro); Hiro sees Nathan come in for a landing (in his pajamas!) after Nathan escapes from CD & MM; Nathan & Good Niki discuss their interlude from last week & the blackmail attempt on Nathan; Isaac & Peter collaborate to try to put together the paintings; Peter then finishes one of Isaac’s precog paintings, this one showing a menacing shadow figure looming over Claire’s body, laying in a pool of blood sans the top of her head; & Ando, whose powers seem to be super horndogginess & the ability to track down Internet strippers, shows up on Niki’s doorstep.

Oh yeah, & we have a bit of a family reunion as DL finally makes an appearance at Niki’s.

Yes, everything seems to be coming together.

We also get to see some of the characters stretching out with their new abilities starting with Nathan learning that he can fly at supersonic speeds. Peter finds that he’s able to mimic Isaac’s precog painter ability without the use of mind altering drugs. And Matt the PsiCop’s mind reading talent seems to be a bit hard for him to control, as his head nearly explodes when he becomes overwhelmed by the thoughts of everyone in a local Qwik-E-Mart where he went to get some ice cream for his wife after some sweet lovin’. (Maybe it was just the oxytocin & he was really tired)

And the show wouldn’t be complete without leaving us all hanging as Peter talks to Present Day (PD) Hiro for the first time, telling him that he has a message for him.

Again with the vagueness!

Gripes? I got 'em

Let’s start with something that I touched on last week: the whole ‘seeing or being from the future & leaving cryptic messages’ routine. I realize that the drama & tension have to be ratcheted up every now & then, but once, just once, I’d like to see someone come from the future (I’m looking at you, FN Hiro) & actually tell someone something of worth. “Save the Cheerleader, save the world?” What kind of crap is that? What cheerleader? Where? How about a school, at least?

Somebody throw me a frickin’ bone, here! (I love that line!)

I also get that telling too much about the future could cause big problems with the whole time/space continuum & rend the Universe in half, but, c’mon…at least give Peter something to go on! Yeesh!

Next, I’ve been noticing that as the show goes on (but more so in this episode), there are a lot of coincidences going on. Case in point: Hiro & Ando are unceremoniously dumped outside of a diner in the literal middle of nowhere. This just happens to be the same diner in the literal middle of nowhere that Nathan decides to land at just moments later. Hmph…what are the odds?

I guess accepting the coincidences are just part of the suspension of disbelief needed to be able to swallow a story about people spontaneously bustin’ out with super powers. And really, I guess that, given the story that the writers are trying to tell, there has to be a certain amount of coincidence.

OK, I’ll let it slide. This time.

This last moan is directed at whoever put together the previews montage at the end of the show: please be careful with what you show in the previews. Yes, all of us who have been following the show closely, probably at the cost of our mental health & coolness quotients, know that DL can phase. A lot of people figured it out from the get-go. But, since you didn’t show him using this ability in this episode, it may have kinda ruined the surprise for those viewers who spent their formative years going out on dates & to football games rather than staying at home on a Saturday night, cataloging their comic book collection in a Trapper Keeper, in great detail, by series, volume, date, cross-over, condition, cost & estimated value.

Not that I knew anyone like that.



My catalog was kept in a blue denim notebook. So there.


This one’s less a problem & more of a head scratcher.

It involves the point in the show when Claire is wheeled into the hospital ER & later when CD is there by her side. During our Tuesday morning Heroes roundtable, Miguelito & I noticed that Claire’s ‘accident’ happened at, say, 10p local time. But, CD was shown a little bit later in Vegas, manhandling Nathan – in broad daylight.

So, we set about trying to figure out if this was a simple case of a Plan 9-esque day-night-day editing error or…something else. Here’s the timeline that we constructed:

Claire leaves the school with QB no later than 930p (football practice, so I’ve been told, usually wouldn’t last beyond 9p). They tool around town a bit, and then Claire introduces QB to his car’s dashboard. Let’s say, for the sake of argument, that this occurs at about 10p (the streets were empty; I don’t know how big Odessa, TX is*, but I’m guessing that it quiets down after sunset). Now, someone more than likely saw or heard the accident, so let’s be generous & say that the accident is reported at about 1005p. It’d take about five minutes for the medics to get there & probably another ten to twenty minutes to extract them from the car. So, we’re at about 1025-1030p. A trip to the ER would probably be about five to fifteen minutes, maybe, depending on the distance & traffic. Now we’re up to about 1045p or so. In that time, the police could have found Claire’s ID & contacted her mother, who could’ve been to the ER before the ambulance. So, let’s just say that Claire’s mom calls CD somewhere around 11p.

Now, when we catch up with CD & hear his phone ring, he’s at the airstrip with Nathan, at a time that’s obviously after sunrise. If the phone call is from his wife, then, geez! She’s been trying to reach him all night long. Then, he’s all the sudden there at Claire’s bedside.

(I’ve just figured out what CD’s power is – the ability to book flights on short notice! Keen!)

Another question brought up, related to the time displacement problem this show has, is just how long was Good/Evil Niki left sleeping in Nathan’s bed before his lackey came in & booted her out? Nathan was abducted, flew away to BFE for breakfast, came back to the hotel (I believe it's the same one, The Montecito from NBC’s ‘Las Vegas’ [as pointed out by the ever vigilant ETS] that Hiro & Ando were ejected from) & then ran into Good Niki. I guess this is feasible, if Good Niki chose to hang around the hotel for a few hours after she got up. Maybe she was looking around for Nathan. Maybe the hotel had a great all-you-can-eat breakfast buffet & she was trying to get her $8.95 worth (she is eating for two, in a manner of speaking). Who knows?

Again, the writers seem to be taking advantage of the audience’s willingness to let some things slide. However, even the most ardent fan will eventually say “Oh, come on!” & give up on the show when forced to fill in so many holes in the plot. Are you listening Lost?

New Theories?

This one involves CD.

So far, he’s been portrayed as, if not completely eee-vil, then at least sketchy & underhanded. We know what he’s capable of &, as was evidenced by his having MM scrub QB’s brainbox clean, what lengths he’ll go to in order to reach his goals.

My theory, though, is that he’s the ‘red herring’ of the show (a red herring being a character or object that is used to mislead the audience into thinking that they are the villain of the story, when, in actuality, they aren’t). I’m thinking that he’s not out to harm Claire, though, or, even the other Supers. Think about it: although he’s played as eee-vil & like he’s a gub’ment spOOk type, have we actually seen him do anything against the Supers to warrant that? The most he apparently did to Matt was to wipe out the memory of his abduction. He hesitated to shoot Nathan when he bolted. He’s not done anything to Claire & is awfully protective of her (I still think that he & his wife didn’t choose to adopt Claire; more that she was placed with him & his family by whatever agency he works for). I dunno…I’m thinking that he may be the key to bringing the Supers together.

Another thing: I missed it, but Miguelito noticed that the hilt on FN Hiro’s katana had the helix insignia emblazoned on it. And we all know that MM has the insignia on his necklace. Why would FN Hiro, who we are assuming to be a good guy, & MM have the same symbol on them? My thought is that the symbol is the heroes’ insignia &, that CD, having MM working with him, is really working for the good side.

Another theory that’s been brought to the table, & this goes back to CD getting around the country really quick, is that he’s not one person, but more like an Agent Smith from The Matrix, only without the mad kung-fu skilz. I know that Texas, Nevada & California aren’t all that far apart, but the guy’s really rackin’ up the frequent flyer miles with all the traveling he does. And if he’s gone so much, how would he be able to keep an eye on Claire? That could be remedied if he’s a clone.

It wouldn’t explain, though, how MM is always with him. Unless Miguelito’s theory that CD’s power is the ability to shrink MM & carry him in his pocket is correct.

Hey, it could happen!

*I looked up the stats on Odessa, TX. At a population of 93,546 as of July 2005, it’s bigger than I thought.

Yes, I put waaaay too much effort into that & am now paying for it with a headache & the scorn & ridicule of normal people everywhere. The love & adoration of the legions of geeks watching the show & reading this (OK, the three of you who might read this if I ask nicely) will make it all worthwhile, though.

Thanks guys!