Monday, November 27, 2006

Heroes—Six Months Ago

"My name is Hiro Nakamura. I'm here to save your life..."

And so Hiro arrives, "Six Months Ago," to save Charlie's life.

I enjoyed this episode quite a bit more than I have the last few. It was unexpected to see so many questions answered and so much backstory filled in--and all of it fit and made sense, which was great. The main plot of the story didn't really move forward, but that's okay, because I think it was time to take a step back and fill in some blanks. And I think they did a great job of it. My interest in this show has been uneven, but this episode did a lot to drag me back in.

In an unexpected twist, the writers use Hiro's trip into the past to show us what happened with all the Heroes six months ago. We already knew from previous mentions that this was about the time when the superpowers began to manifest. So we spend the episode checking in with several familiar faces, to see where they were when it all started hitting the fan.

Suresh Sr. has just begun his search for the Heroes, which was spurred, it turns out, by the fact that his daughter died from a genetic mutation. He zeroes in on a watchmaker named Gabriel, but things turn sour when he determines Gabriel has no superpowers. Jealous, Gabriel lures one of Suresh's contacts to his death, then apparently absorbs the other man's power. Oh, yeah, and he decides to call himself Sylar. Gabriel Sylar can sense when and how things are broken--but does he also take other Heroes' powers? Does he do this by extracting their brains? This seems likely--during last week's confrontation he seemed to have a nice medley of powers, rather than just one, like the other folks we've met.

Claire gets her Big Break to become a cheerleader, and her healing powers manifest for the first time. In the meantime, her father finds Eden and lures her to the Dark Side...or at least to help him get Claire's name off Suresh's list. Interesting factoid: Mr. Bennett is immune to Eden's mojo, as is Mysterious Black Dude, whose origins and powers are not explained further. So why is Mr. Bennett immune, and what exactly is MBD's deal? We've seen him do something to other Heroes--including shutting Matt's powers down cold. Maybe his presence makes Mr. Bennett immune?

Niki meets up with her absentee father at an AA meeting. We discover she had a sister named Jessica, who is dead. Turns out Daddy killed the sister in a drunken rage, and Niki becomes Niki/Jessica (for the first time?) after her father has a confrontation with Micah. I'd be tempted to say Niki doesn't even have a super power, that she just has multiple personality disorder, except that Jessica seems to have some sort of preternatural strength thing going on.

Peter's hair was still in his face six months ago, implying he keeps that haircut on purpose. He and Nathan discuss Nathan's decision to go up against their father's biggest client, who is a crook. The client sends a truck after Nathan and Heidi, smashing into the back of their car. Nathan's power manifests as he flies out of the car, leaving it to crash, thus putting Heidi in a wheelchair. He abandons the case after their father dies of a heart attack. Nathan claims he doesn't remember what happened to him during the accident, but is this true? Was this really the first time he'd ever flown? Or did he do it on purpose to save himself? Either option seems likely--Nathan seemed pretty calm about the whole thing, which could imply either shell-shocked ignorance or carefully schooled cover-up.

Matt's story is a bit shallow here, but he's there, with his telepathic powers just beginning to manifest. Pulled over for drunk driving, Eden mojos him into eating donuts, then he fails his detective test for the second time, apparently due to dyslexia. How unoriginal is that, though, making Matt eat donuts? I would have made him scrub all the police car tires in the fleet with a toothbrush, or chop down the largest tree in the forest with a herring.

It turns out Charlie is dying of a blood clot/anyeurism in her brain, and has fallen for Hiro. Unfortunately he jumps just as she's about to kiss him, and ends up in Japan, unable to jump back. This begs the question--was Charlie killed by Sylar, after all, or did she die of natural causes?

After his accidental jump, Hiro returns to the diner. He tells Ando he failed, and that he can't change the past. He loved Charlie (awwww), but his power is bigger than him.

And we are back at the end of last week's episode.