Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Heroes recap: “Cautionary Tales” – airdate 11/19/07 (S2E9)

The dropping: The episode title is “Cautionary Tales” but it should be “Mr. Bennett is all kinds of bad ass.” Elle gets a wake-up call. Hiro grows up a little. Parkman begins to be seduced by his powers. Mohinder completely goes over to the dark side.

The Bennetts are packing up their house and getting ready to leave Costa Verde but Claire refuses to go. She announces that her father is a bad man for what he did to West. Bennett threatens to tie her up to get her to behave but Mrs. Bennett intercedes, sending her daughter off to school. “I hate you,” Claire tells her father through gritted teeth. We cut to Japan, present day, at Hiro’s father’s funeral. Hiro is supposed to eulogize Kaito but he won’t do it, saying he is going back in time to rescue his father. Over Ando’s protests, Hiro blinks out of time and back one week ago to the NYC rooftop as Kaito speaks with Angela Petrelli.

Matt Parkman and Molly are having breakfast together and Molly offers to locate some of the people in the Company group photo. Parkman doesn’t want her to do that and discovers that he get her to do what he wants by thinking the suggestion at her. He no longer just reads peoples’ minds; he gets them to do what he wants. Bob and Mohinder have arrived in Costa Verde. Bob tells Mohinder that they’re there to snatch Claire and “take out” Mr. Bennett. Mohinder is uneasy about the murdering bit so Bob introduces him to Elle, who has been working on her sharp shooting. She looks sassily at Mohinder’s bandaged nose and chirps, “Hey, Fight Club, check this out!” She points her finger at her rum punch and delicately shatters the glass. That’s some fine motor control there! Plus, calling him “Fight Club” is funny.

Claire flags West down on his way to school. She promises him that she wasn’t spying on him for her father and tells him that although her family is leaving town, she’s staying because of West. West wants to believe her but can’t quite, and flies away to figure things out. Who’s she going to stay with if she stays behind? Teenagers never think things through. Parkman’s boss wants him to stop wasting his time with the Kaito Nakamura case. Annoyed, Parkman telepaths forth a suggestion, and the boss suddenly says Parkman has 24 hours and can interview Angela Petrelli again. “Good idea,” smugs Parkman. Ooh, I can see this going to a dark place – Parkman’s going to have a tough time withstanding temptation.

Mr. Bennett shows his wife the other Isaac paintings, including the one where he gets shot in the eye. “It’s all falling apart,” he says. Bennett then calls Mohinder on his cell to ask Molly to locate West, not realizing that Mohinder is in Costa Verde and looking for him. Mohinder reports in to Bob and Elle and suggests setting up a trap for Bennett. Bob reluctantly agrees to try Mohinder’s plan and Elle gropes Mohinder, in a sociopathic way, as she straps him into his shoulder holster. Back in the one-week ago past, Hiro confronts his father after Angela leaves the rooftop and tells Kaito that this night is the night he is killed. Kaito is willing to accept his fate but Hiro won’t and blinks them out of time. Yes, Hiro, apparently you have learned nothing about messing up the space-time continuum from your sojourn in 1671. Back in California, Mr. Bennett stomps out of the house to look for West. Just as he gets out the door, however, West swoops down, grabs him and flies off.

Way up in the sky, West reminds Bennett that he can only fly – he doesn’t have super strength and can’t hold onto him much longer. Bennett reassures West that Claire protected him: “You must be pretty important to her.” West brings them both back to earth. As soon as they touch down, Bennett slams the boy into the ground, growling that West is going to use his influence over Claire to get her to leave town tonight with her family. Bennett’s cell phone rings: it’s Mohinder, who lies that West can be found at the corner of A and B Streets. Bennett, who is kneeling on West’s back, looks up at the conveniently nearby X and Y Street signs and figures that Mohinder is up to no good. He promises to be right over anyway. West wants to know what’s going on. Bennett says Claire’s in trouble and he needs West’s help.

At school, the cheerleaders are practicing to some APPALLINGLY cheesy music when Bob, posing as a school administrator, tries to speak with Claire alone, presumably about the drunken cheerleader incident. He blows it, however, calling her by her real last name and she runs out of there. When Bennett arrives at the corner of A and B Streets, Mohinder jumps into the car and says that the Company just wants to borrow Claire for her blood, to save lives. “You’ve gone native,” marvels Bennett, “you sound like me ten years ago.” He tries to reason with Mohinder but that stupid git just pulls his gun out and tells Bennett to start driving. When Claire gets back to her house, her mom is there … and so is Bob with his own gun.

Bennett and Mohinder drive off to somewhere and get out of the car. Bennett wants to know who Mohinder’s partner is, seeing how it’s “Company policy: one of them, one of us.” Then he sees Elle – they know each other. Mohinder, still holding the gun on Bennett as Elle approaches, looks as though he’s in way over his head. Uh, yeah. Elle starts charging up the blue blazes but before she can deliver, West flies in, grabs her and rams her into the top of a car, knocking her unconscious. Mohinder starts to panic, raising the gun. Bennett takes the gun away and after Mohinder gets in one decent right hook, punches the good doctor right in his broken nose. Yikes - and also, serves him right. Mohinder falls to his knees, cradling his nose in both hands so that it looks like he’s praying. Bennett cocks the gun and holds it to his head: “You lie to me, betray me, you come after my daughter – how’d you think it was going to end?” He is SO fucking scary right now. But a nervous West interrupts, “Mr. Butler, what are you doing?” and Bennett unfortunately does not shoot the annoying, weak-minded and traitorous Mohinder, instead kicking him, quite possibly in the nuts, and slamming his head into the side of the car.

Bennett rushes home to find Mrs. Bennett duct-taped to a chair. Bob has Claire! But Bennett has “collateral,” and West walks in with the still-unconscious Elle slung over his shoulder. Bennett very seriously asks his wife, “Did you pack Mr. Muggles’s doggy bath?” She looks at him as though he’s lost his mind. He hasn’t, though: he chains Elle to a chair and puts her bare feet in the galvanized dog bath, filling it with water. Then he hoses her down to wake her up. “I need to get in touch with your father,” Bennett says conversationally. Elle is furious, “What, do you think this is my first day?” and fires up the charge. She must have missed that day in ninth grade science class because the electrical charge swirls around the chains on her wrists and the galvanized tub and flows back into her. She screams and screams. It’s pretty awful; West and Mrs. Bennett are slightly horrified. “Stings like a bitch, doesn’t it?” notes Bennett.

Oh my word, I’m scarcely halfway done with the episode. I gotta get a move on or I’ll be here all night.

Bennett tells Elle that he knows all about her ability, that he was there when her father brought her in for testing. “The human brain isn’t built to take that much electricity. You poor girl.” When she says that her father wouldn’t have let that happen, he says, “Your father was leading the charge.” Get it? “Charge.” She’s hurt but insists that she doesn’t remember anything. Bennett points out that the Haitian stripped her memories and then Elle starts to feel really bad for herself. Bennett calls Bob on Elle’s phone and sets up the meeting. Bob agrees to it and then siphons out at least a pint of Claire’s blood. She allows him to do so, “Just leave my dad alone. No one has to die.” And on her last sentence, the camera zooms in on her magic blood coursing through the tubing.

Boring. Hiro has brought his father seventeen years ago to Hiro’s mother’s funeral. Whatever point Hiro was trying to make gets rendered moot when he realizes that he needs to honor his father’s wish to follow his fate. He brings them back to the night of Kaito’s death. They exchange their goodbyes and Hiro blinks out. Moments later, Kaito’s mystery attacker (who I think is Adam) grabs Kaito and launches them both off the rooftop. Suddenly they freeze in mid-air: Hiro steps out, saying while he can’t save his father, he can discover his murderer. He takes a closer look and yes, it is Kensei/Adam. Hiro is surprised but none of us viewers are. How unsuspenseful was that?

Bennett and West head off to meet Bob for the blonde girl swap. Bennett is starting to like West because the boy clearly cares for his daughter. It’s kind of cute if you can forget about how West stalked her early on. Bennett tries to say goodbye to his wife, just in case, but she won’t hear of it, insisting that he’ll be bringing Claire back. This makes me think that Mohinder really will shoot him and if they kill off Mr. Bennett while allowing that weenie Mohinder to live, I will be SO ANGRY.

Parkman interrogates Angela Petrelli again. She says she is less impressed with him than she was with his father. Parkman tells her that he is able to “push” now as well as “pull” (ooh – using his mind to “push” people to do things is just like those X-Files episodes! Those were good ones). She’s nervous now and asks him not to do this but she can’t withstand the telepathic insistence on her honesty and begins to answer his questions. She’s fighting him, though - she is one tough lady. She tells Parkman a bunch of stuff we already know (Adam is out for revenge, his cellular regeneration has stopped the normal aging process, etc.). When Parkman asks about the last unnamed woman in the photograph, Angela begs him not to do this: if he pulls this secret out of her head, he’ll become his father. He gives the mind-push and her nose starts to bleed.

Bennett, West and Elle stand on one side of the parking lot as Bob, Mohinder and Claire drive up. Bennett instructs West to fly away with Claire as soon as she’s clear, no matter what happens. Claire and Elle cross to their respective fathers, Elle burning through her bonds. West grabs Claire and flies up with her but Elle turns and sends a bolt of electricity at him; they fall, Claire turning mid-air so she can cushion West’s landing. Bennett, not well pleased, shoots Elle in the arm, dropping her with a cry, and Bob runs to her side. Bennett stalks up to them: “No matter what I do, we’ll always be running. But if you die, Bob, the Company dies with you.” He points his gun at Bob’s head, Elle crying in her father’s arms. As Bennett cocks his gun, that motherfucker Mohinder shoots him right through his left eye, just like in Isaac’s painting. Are you kidding me? That weaselly little twit brings down Bennett? Claire screams and tries to run to her father but West takes her away, successfully this time. Bob looks at his fallen adversary and his expression is enigmatic and a little sorrowful.

West brings Claire home and watches as she goes inside to tell her mother what happened. Mrs. Bennett collapses to her knees. It’s sad. We close with a voiceover – not that asshole Mohinder, thankfully – but Hiro’s eulogy for his father. The shots fade from Kaito’s funeral; to Mohinder staring balefully at his gun; to Bob trying to check on Elle’s gunshot wound and Elle shrugging him off, angry that he directed the Company’s testing on her; to Parkman who has dragged the woman’s name, Victoria Pratt, out of Angela’s head; to the Bennetts, mourning their loss; to an IV bag full of Claire’s blood, dripping into Mr. Bennett’s arm. We see his ruined eye regenerate and he gasps for air, alive. Yes! Mohinder is so going to get his ass kicked.

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