Broadcast Date: 4 January 2010
Director: Jeannot Szwarc
Writer: Jim Martin
Cast: Deanne Bray, Jack Coleman, Robert Knepper, David H. Lawrence, James Kyson Lee, Oka Masi, Dawn Olivieri, Hayden Panettiere, and Todd Stashwick
Peter: “Because I need to be more than a Band-Aid, Claire.”
Aw, and we were off to such a great start. One of the most frustrating things about this season of Heroes is the characters’ tendency to verbalize every emotion instead of letting it come through in their behavior. They’re like Dawson’s Creek characters.
Wait. Do people even remember Dawson’s Creek? I suddenly feel guilty about bringing up such an outdated pop culture reference. Perhaps if I sought redemption, I could rid myself of this awful sensation I have in my soul. It’s like I lost my sense of purpose in life and… Do you see how annoying that gets?
Anyway, this chapter is all about letting out your hurt and anger: Peter almost gets himself killed trying to repress his grief for Nathan; Noah trounces on poor Edgar to get over his daughter’s rejection; and Sylar lashes out at the carnies for what was done to him last season. In every case, the experience proves hallow. If you don’t believe me, just ask Claire… And Peter and Sylvia and Noah and Lauren. They won’t shut up about it.
Peter a.k.a. Mr. Empathic
The most obvious symbol in the episode is Claire cutting her finger at Nathan’s wake. It doesn’t heal for some reason (some injuries, such as the death of a loved one, never do), and Claire wants to let it bleed so she can experience the pain. Peter gets her a Band-Aid so he can make it all better.
In true Peter fashion, he tries to deal with his own hurt by saving people, albeit in a completely reckless way. Good thing Claire is there as his “safety net”. Peter really should have copied her ability before going off to stop a shooting, of all things. Also, I love how comfortably the two start talking about their powers in front of the injured woman. She must have thought they were nuts.
Noah a.k.a. Jack Bauer in a Suit
As usual this season, Noah’s subplot is by far the least interesting. So Claire is angry at him again. What else is new? Noah used to be my favorite character, but now I groan every time he starts prattling about all the bad decisions he’s made in life. I don’t know how Lauren can stand him in his current state. She was better off with Angel.
I’m also uncomfortable with seeing him gleefully torture another human being like that, especially since he isn’t doing it for information so much as emotional release. If I was Edgar the Speedster, I wouldn’t trust Noah either. I mean, he’s just one step removed from being a serial killer at this point, isn’t he?
Sylar a.k.a. The Energizer Killer Bunny
He just keeps going and going and going, doesn’t he? It seems the Powers That Be have found yet another way of neutering Sylar until the big season finale. This time, it’s a psychological blockage, presumably due to the time he spent as Nathan. Don’t get me wrong. I think Zachary Quinto has amazing onscreen presence, but I could do with a little less Sylar, please.
The problem is that he’s so evil he always demands the heroes’ immediate attention. That means, for the story to make sense, the characters have to go through the same motions over and over and over again. There’s something wrong with Sylar, and he wants to fix it! Yup, seen that before. Different factions are trying to manipulate him! Seen it too. Sylar rebels and goes after Claire! We get it. We get it.
Bits and Pieces
- Despite my misgivings about Sylar coming back so soon, the opening scene, in which he confronts Samuel, is six kinds of awesome. It’s like an old-school monster mash with both actors reaching new levels of creepy. Icky climax too.
- I wonder if we’ll see Mr. Nozawa, the Japanese cook, again. He knows too much!
- And what’s his calling Lauren the “Iron Maiden” all about?
- Peter copying West’s ability in order to fly like Nathan one last time is kind of sweet, but that kid must spend all day in front of his Facebook account for Claire to have reached him so fast. Loser.
Most of the quotes come from Samuel this time around. He’s the only one not explaining every little thing he feels:
Sylar: “I returned with one simple, singular thought.”
Samuel: “Wait. Don’t tell me. Fun?”
Samuel: “If you had the strength, I’d put you in construction. If you had the wisdom, you’d teach the children. But, no, these hands are meant for a softer trade.”
That’s cold. And kind of gross.
Samuel: “I’m not a good guy, but I’m not all bad either.”
Looks like someone just caught the constantly-explaining-your-character bug too.
Noah: “You’re not a violent person.”
Edgar: “No, you are.”
Lauren: “The thing about burnt bridges is they can be rebuilt.”
We shall see Heroes writers. We shall see.
Now I know I’m being too easy.