The show opens tonight on Danko. He's shaving in his house, absolutely quietly, when suddenly an alarm goes off. His front door is open. There no time for one last pass along his face: the chin is toweled, the gun unholstered. He proceeds to sneak around towards the front, finds no one there, but suddenly realizes there's a present waiting for him in his living room. A big present, in fact. Puppet guy, passed out, strung up along the side of his wall with a big red bow attached to his waist. It's a creepy, intriguing scene, and it's followed shortly thereafter with some words across the screen: Consulting Producer, Bryan Fuller.
Much has been lauded about the former Pushing Daisies showrunner's return to Heroes, where he spent most of his time during the show's first season (even penning the awesome "Company Man" episode)—would he save the show from its dredges, catapulting it back to the serialized phenomenon it was a few years ago? Maybe, but probably not right away. In fact, it looks like he's been serving as the Consulting Producer for at least two episodes previously—and I don't know what that job entails, but I can't imagine it holds as heavy an influence as fans would like.
But, with all that said, tonight's episode had a few touches that reminded me a lot of what I liked about season one: It took its time with some of the story telling, crafted beautiful stage pictures, and—here's where it gets really good—actually stepped up to the plate and killed off a few characters. It wasn't perfect, but it was a huge step in the right direction.
First, the good. We finally see who Rebel is, and it's Micah. (I'm one-for-one, if you count only this prediction.)
[Actually, you wanna know something funny? I typed the parenthetical, then went back and reread the previous sentence to make sure it made sense. And you know what? I wrote Walt instead of Micah. When he showed up, all post-pubsecent and stuff, Walt was the first person who sprang to mind.]
Anyways, now some not-so-good. He decides to finally get Tracy out of her holding cell, and so he shuts off the power in Building 26, thus allowing her to freeze off her handcuffs. She escapes, but not before making a detour by the room containing the rest of the heroes, stopping only to rescue Parkman, Mohinder, and Daphne for some reason. (She might have blown right by Daphne, if her name wasn't annoyingly the first thing Parkman said when he woke up.) They escape, then split ways: Tracy heads to the airport, per Rebel's request; Parkman and Mohinder head to the hospital to get Daphne looked at. Micah shows himself to Tracy once she arrives, telling her that it's okay that she's not his mom, but that he wants to motivate her to join the cause. See, he's read her bio (oy!), and it says something about wanting to help people, to stand up for what they believe in. But Tracy's not the woman from her bio anymore (almost her exact words, oy gevalt!), so she demands Micah stay back and fight the good fight—and avoid the trap she inadvertently set for him, as HRG was trailing. So she freezes the soldiers, and herself, then gets shattered by a bullet from Danko. One down.
Daphne's dead too, in a subplot that includes the earnestly spoken phrase by Parkman, "I'm hanging our relationship on the fact that I love you." I don't wanna get into it. It was excrutiating… but over!
Back to the good, this was one of Angela Petrelli's best episodes in a long while. She decides to head out of town, but has a dream in the cab on the way that involves her getting snatched from the cab. She wakes up, and the whole things plays out within a few seconds (thanks for the heads up). But that's all she needs to escape into the rain, a fugitive with no money for clothes and no one she can trust. Well, except this one woman that they never really name, who I'm guessing is her sister—though I could be way wrong. And, as the end of the episode reveals, she still has Peter, who swoops down to pick her up, then whisks her away to the top of the Statue of Liberty, where they can plot their next move. The final scene looked pretty stunning—which is rare on this show that recently has favored mostly DIY special effects, like having Sylar use his telekinesis power only—and sets the stage nicely for a total Petrelli resurgence against "the man." Who in this case happens to also be a Petrelli.
Also not-terrible: The Hiro story. Yes, I could barely believe it either, but other than a few annoying old tricks (Hiro throwing the baby's arms in the air), the story of how Hiro and Ando saved Matt Parkman's son's life was pretty darn cool. Mostly, I enjoyed the fact that the show has introduced a baby with powers—specifically, the power to touch things and turn them on, or whatever. C'mon, it's a baby! A super-powered baby! It's ADORABLE!!! Also, it seems Ando not only can enhance the powers of other heroes, but he can shoot his enhancement energy on unsuspecting normal humans like a freakin' hadouken. Now that they're on the run, and Hiro's got some of his powers back—thankfully not the entire God-like batch—it's time to finally get these guys into the central story for once. Just, Bryan Fuller, promise me you'll use your powers of "consultation" to ensure no Hiro-Ando-baby slapstick, okay?
- Boy, Micah sure loves SPRINT PHONES, WOO! He'd have a lot more power holding an iPhone, though. Just sayin'.