Sunday, October 11, 2009

Super-Powered TV: Heroes 4.4: Acceptance

Apologies for the lateness of this report. I am way behind on all my television viewing, reading, and other entertainment forms after a rather hectic week. On to the episode!

We start with Tracy reconnecting with her former employer, the governor of New York. She gets her job back, but already seems to have doubts about it from the get go. Tracy visits Noah and admits that she is uncomfortable in the position. Noah tries to convince her that she might be read to move on. Tracy leaves for dinner with the governor anyway. She tries to convince the governor she wants to help people. The governor just hits on her again. She leaves as she begins to lose control of her powers. She returns from the bathroom and just abandons the senator.

Dial-A-Hero gets another call, from the rooftop of their own building. He is going to jump, apparently because he got fired for copying his butt at the Christmas party. Really? And we are supposed to take Hiro’s dying seriously? He stops the copying, but Tadashi is still on the rooftop. This is idiotic. After multiple attempts, he finally realizes that he needs to talk Takashi down and does so easily. The talk also makes Hiro realize he needs to tell Kimiko the truth about his situation. Hiro has an attack after his confession, then disappears.

Peter meets with Noah about the compass tattoo, but when he arrives the tattoo is gone. Noah turns Peter down. Peter leaves as Claire arrives. Claire tries to get Noah to get a job. Their heart to heart does help them reconnect emotionally. Noah reconnects to his desire to stop the Carnival.

We get a brief digression with Samuel, Lydia, and Edgar. Edgar express his doubt which seems to draw Samuel’s ire. Lydia gives a vision of Bennett.

Angela brings Nathan a pile of keepsakes that help to refresh “his” memories of the past. He visits Peter and confesses about the image of his dead girlfriend, Kelly. Nathan visits Kelly’s mother, but she tells Nathan that she left for London. He wanders to the pool where he uses Sylar’s psychometry to remember the past. They both fall in to the pool, but Kelly hits her head on the side of the pool and breaks her skull open. Angela confesses that she used the Haitian to erase Nathan’s memory and clean up the “problem”. He tells her mom Millie the truth, but Millie just tells her to leave. Nathan gets attacked in a parking garage by a mystery man. Millie meets with Angela and tells her that he forgives Nathan, even as her hitman shoots and buries Nathan in the woods. Nathan survives and quickly digs himself out of the shadow grave... as Sylar.

While the Nathan parts of the episode did a good job of establishing where exactly his mind is in the currrent situation, much of the rest of this episode is middling filler at best. The Hiro bits just show us how redundant Hiro is becoming on this show. For a man so obsessed with the hero’s journey, one would think he would be smart enough to figure out he keeps repeating himself. Even as he is now dying, Hiro seems to be traveling the same path he has traveled in the previous three seasons. Tracy’s part of the story on the other hand seems to be filler at best and an attempt to keep Ali Larter’s characters stupid at the worst. Nothing about the epiphany Tracy has at the end of this episode needed to be acted out this way. Having her life destroyed in the last volume honestly should have been enough to make her realize her path was no longer as a governor’s personal aide/prostitute.

Like so many episodes before it, Heroes wants to spend too much time on the build. We still have no idea what motivates the carnival, who they are, or where they come from. This isn’t Lost, guys. You do not have the size of the cast or the over-arching design that Lost has. You cannot get away with taking an entire season to develop the plot this way. This kind of deconstructed storytelling is dying in the comics your stories obviously cop from and should do so here.

Next week (okay, tomorrow night): “Hysterical Blindness”.

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