Monday, September 22, 2008

Heroes recap: S3E1 and E2 (09/22/08)

“The Second Coming” (S3E1). Four years in the future, Peter’s running in Manhattan. He backs into a warehouse or something and a brunette Claire’s got a gun on him. He says he’s going back to the day they all found out but she says it’s too late: the Heroes have been hunted and experimented upon and Claire has had it. She’s wearing a lot of eyeliner. “I’m sorry, Peter,” she says, and shoots at him but he freezes time to dodge the bullet and teleports back to -

- present day: where Nathan is about to give his big who-the-Heroes-are speech. Scar-Peter puts on a black ball cap and wow – he’s going to be the one who shoots Nathan to keep the Heroes a secret, isn’t he? And yes, that’s what happens: Scar-Peter shoots Nathan and Now-Peter rushes after him, Parkman trailing behind. Scar-Peter runs into a bathroom and disappears; Now-Peter did not get a good look at the shooter. Watching the news, Claire calls Peter, offering up her magical blood. Peter reminds her that she’s in California; Claire looks pensive as she hangs up the phone.

At the hospital, the doctors were unable to save Nathan. Peter goes into the ER and kisses his dead brother goodbye. Peter is looking fiiiiiine, y’all. Suddenly, with a great gasp, Nathan sits up.

Hiro sits in a fancy office, playing with a clock. Despite being a 51% owner of his father’s company, Hiro is bored – he misses having a quest. There is a knock on the door and this time it’s the family lawyer, with a DVD message that Hiro’s father recorded before his death.

Back in California, Claire is packing a bag to try to get to Nathan. But when she opens the door, Sylar is there. He’s after her power, of course. She clocks him with a cheering trophy and runs, but she hasn’t hurt him badly enough because he gets all poltergeist on her house, slamming closed shutters and bursting light bulbs. Claire grabs a knife and wanders around her house, final-girl style, with Sylar silently behind her. She takes a swipe at him, then barricades herself in a linen closet, of all places.

Cut to Maya and Mohinder at his apartment. He’s just put Molly on a plane to “somewhere safe.” Well, that’s one way to get rid of extraneous characters. How about getting rid of Maya now? She’s ready to get to work on his ridding her of her nasty black eye goo power, but Mohinder is calling it quits and heading back to India. Maya gets cranky about it and her eyes turn black – Mohinder starts to choke – but then she reins it in. Mohinder’s brain starts churning as he realizes that her ability stems from adrenaline, a fight-or-flight response. The prior research was wrong, Mohinder hypothesizes: these abilities are generated by the adrenal gland, not the blood.

Hiro watches his father’s DVD. He’s leaving his son to be the guardian of a dangerous secret, a secret that could destroy the world if in the wrong hands. So, his father says, Hiro must never, ever open the safe. Of course, Hiro immediately opens it. There’s another DVD: “I asked you not to open the safe.” There’s also an envelope with half of a formula which, if it falls into the wrong hands, could be very, very bad. Hiro of course opens the envelope and pulls out a laminated piece of paper with some symbols on it. And then, a red and white blur flashes through and snaps up the paper. Hiro stops time and catches up to the blur. It’s Landry’s funky ex-girlfriend (from Friday Night Lights), calling herself a speedster. She busts out of his time hold, then knocks him out with one punch and speeds away.

Peter goes back to the scene of Nathan’s shooting, looking for the gun. But Parkman has already found it. They do some brain pushing and Peter wins … because he’s Scar-Peter, hiding his scar with a glamour. He tells Parkman that he came from the future to stop Nathan from telling the world about the Heroes, “And now that you know, you can’t be here.” Peter teleports Parkman away somewhere (ooh! Is that another way to get rid of a character?) and then stomps away with the gun.

At the hospital, Nathan wakes up. It appears that both he and I are still wondering how the hell he came back to life. He walks dazedly into the hospital’s chapter and tells a woman there that he saw God today. He says that he’s been brought back to do God’s bidding and spread the word: “We’re all connected … to save ourselves, and save the world.” I swear, if all Adrian Pasdar gets to do this season is wax crazy-religious, I will be pissed at the waste of such a pretty man.

Mohinder’s doing something science-y and has some sort of immediate break-through. Let me paraphrase: “with the contents of this syringe, I could give powers to anyone. And with added adrenaline, the effects would be instantaneous.” He rushes off to his lab, leaving Maya to mope, "Give powers?” Oh, and before he leaves, he and Maya have this “spark” between them - bleh. Speaking of sparks, where’s Kristin Bell?

Claire is still hiding in her closet as Sylar stalks around, sounding creepy. As he stalks, he finds a file from Mr. Bennett’s office called “Level 5” with all sorts of nasty looking characters in it. While his attention is caught, Claire plunges her knife into his chest. He still manages to telekinesis her up against the wall and then starts to cut her forehead open. Quick – someone tell him he just needs her adrenal gland!

When we come back from the commercial, Sylar has Claire laid out on the coffee table with the top of her skull off, poking around in her brain, trying to find answers before he bleeds to death. She asks him if he’s going to eat her brain. Sylar: “Claire, that’s disgusting.” Hee. He pulls something out, or pokes at something, then pulls the knife out of his chest and gleefully watches the wound heal. And because he’s a gentleman, he puts her skull back on her head … and she sits up, healing. Totally confused, she asks if he isn’t going to kill her. He gently shakes his head, saying that she’s different from all the others - her brain is different from all the rest. He could never kill her as she can never die. “And now, I guess, neither can I.” Now, that’s an exit line.

Maya catches up to Mohinder at the lab and encourages him to destroy what he’s discovered. Mohinder is high on the science, however, and won’t listen to her. She insists that these abilities are curses, not gifts, and flounces out. Sometime later, Mohinder stands by the river, thinking about throwing away the syringe. Then, because he’s always been envious that he hasn’t had any powers, he injects himself instead and falls to the ground, twitching and flailing.

Peter is in Nathan’s hospital room when his brother wakes up, still talking about God. Peter and I are equally disappointed in the ramblings but Peter (and it’s Scar-Peter) says that he doesn’t expect Nathan to understand what he did now, but he will. Peter leaves and LINDEMAN walks out from behind the curtain. Wasn’t expecting that. Cut to Bruce Boxleitner (formerly known as “Scarecrow”) watching the news of Nathan’s call to glory. He calls “Tracy” out of the bedroom to come take a look. She’s Niki/Jessica, barely clad in lingerie; she calls Scarecrow “Governor;” and she doesn’t seem to recognize Nathan at all. I had really hoped we’d gotten rid of her in that explosion last year.

Parkman wakes up in some desert with a scorpion on his face. He can’t find any minds when he reaches out, and doesn’t know where or when he is.

In Tokyo, Ando thinks Hiro is not nearly worried enough about having lost the formula to that speedy girl. Impetuously, Hiro jumps to the future to find out if the world really will be destroyed. He is just in time to see (1) himself holding the formula, (2) Ando zapping future Hiro with red electricity and stealing the formula, and (3) Tokyo being destroyed. Hiro blinks himself back to now and resolutely tells Ando that they’ve got to get that formula back. I liked Hiro in S1, but he is just being written so stupid lately. Ugh.

In the hospital, Mrs. Petrelli corners Scar-Peter and rips him a new one, saying that because of him, the future she once saw will not come to pass and something new and horrible is coming instead. He protests that Nathan didn’t die but she doesn’t care. She slams him up against the wall (!!) and demands to know what he’s done with her son. “Don’t worry,” snarls Scar-Peter, “I put him somewhere safe.” Cut to the cells on Level 5, where there’s a guy in a straitjacket, another playing with blue fire, Mr. Bennett is tossing a ball against the cell wall and Weevil from Veronica Mars screaming at the top of his lungs, “I’m not supposed to be here! I’m Peter Petrelli!” (This gives Mr. Bennett pause when he hears it.) Yay for Francis Capra!

As Mohinder’s voiceover drones on, Claire’s mom comes home to her bloodied daughter; Parkman, wandering in the desert, finds a pictograph of a burning planet Earth; Sylar stalks through the suburbs; Lindeman watches a sleeping Nathan; and a barely conscious Mohinder gets mugged … but fights his attackers off with super-strength. Seriously, this show has been off the air for how long and they can’t come up with an original new power?

“The Butterfly Effect” (S3E2). Mrs. Bennett and Claire clean up the aftermath of Sylar’s visit. Sweetly, Mrs. B worries that Sylar raped her daughter but Claire assures her that’s not the case. They notice that Claire has a big chunk of glass stuck in her hand: her power has changed post-Sylar in that she still heals, but now she doesn’t even feel the pain.

Mrs. Petrelli walks through a vision: Hiro is dead, Parkman is dead, Mr. Bennett is dead, Peter looks like he’s dying and someone has pulled Claire’s head off. Mrs. P stops, and the bad guys assemble before her: Adam (yay!), Niki/Jessica, possibly Parkman’s dad (?), a tall, thin black man and Sylar. Mrs. P wakes up in her limo, shaken. She finds Scar-Peter in Mohinder’s apartment, assembling the timeline strings. She again blames him for screwing things up and tells him to get back when he belongs. She also tells him that Claire gets hurt in this timeline and to go see for himself.

Oh, yick. Maya arrives at the lab in a tiny orange belly shirt and white hip-huggers to find Mohinder hanging like a bat from the rafters. Then he climbs the walls and ceiling like Spiderman. He’s sweaty and acting sort of insane. He reminds me of Jeff Goldblum from The Fly and we all know how well that ended. Then Maya and Mohinder kiss, and he rips her shirt open, and then they’re doin’ it on the table. I am completely squicked out.

Parkman is still wandering in somewhere. There are snakes and vultures in the dead trees. It’s hot and he collapses. Sylar, however, is wandering suburbia and when two Company agents track him down, he proves impervious to their bullets and casually crunches them against their own car. Elle and Bob watch the video back at Primatech. Elle admits to having let Sylar get away and says she’ll fix it. Bob says he doesn’t want to put her in a position to fail again.

In Tokyo, Hiro has hired detectives and they figure out the speedster’s name (Daphne) and location (Paris). He teleports himself and Ando after her. Meanwhile, Tracy/Niki/Jessica and Governor Malden walks through the halls of someplace in Washington D.C., arguing about Nathan. Tracy wants to appoint Nathan as the junior senator for New York but the Governor isn’t convinced. As Tracy heads to her car, the Greatest American Hero himself, William Katz (playing a reporter), wants to know how a Las Vegas stripper (Niki) finagled such a high-powered political job. He has a flyer with Tracy/Niki/Jessica’a picture on it. Tracy denies everything, threatens him and drives away.

Hiro and Ando pop into Daphne’s flat in Paris. It’s spacious and filled with antiquities, including the Mona Lisa. That’s some thief there.

Claire is back to hurting herself and making tapes of it, saying that she’s trying to feel pain again to see if she’s still human. “I’m Claire Bennett and this is attempt #7,” she states flatly, before stepping in front of a freight train. But uncle Peter swoops in and knocks her to safety. He asks what happened to her and she replies, “Something terrible.” You know, these two actors are (or were) dating in real life and this whole uncle/niece thing is a little sketchy in the face of it. Uncle Scar-Peter (scar hidden) tells Claire that it was his fault that Sylar got into her brain - which it wasn’t supposed to happen. She wants to learn how to defend herself but Peter won’t help and teleports away.

Tracy interrupts Nathan’s prayers at the hospital. He thinks she’s Niki/Jessica and she has no idea what he thinks. He calls her “Niki” and tells her to cut the crap. She isn’t fazed, introducing herself as “Tracy Straus” and offering him the junior senatorship. She leaves, brushing past Lindeman without a glance (is he only in Nathan’s head …?). Lindeman tells Nathan that Tracy was who she said she was and that the offer was legit. Nathan ain’t buyin’ it and tells Lindeman to get out.

Elle charges into her dad’s office, saying that she thinks they can entice Sylar to Primatech by virtue of all the evil powers they’ve got locked up in Level 5 … but Sylar has already been there and scooped out Bob’s brain. Cut to Elle, gun in hand, striding through the Level 5 cells. Weevil yells to her that he’s Peter Petrelli but she doesn’t even look at him (kind of harsh for old VM buddies!). She busts Mr. Bennett out of his cell and hands him the gun, telling that her dad is dead, and Sylar’s in the building. She turns to go, shrieks and goes flying past the window. Apparently Sylar is right out in the hall. Mr. Bennett empties the gun into the bad guy, which only stops him temporarily, and he quickly TKs Mr. B down the hall.

Elle tries to get her spark on but Sylar flips her onto her back. Behind them, Weevil is screaming for him to leave her alone. I do not want Sylar to kill Elle off – she’s actually interesting – but he starts to slice open her forehead. She screams and screams, and there’s a huge explosion of blue electricity, throwing Sylar back against the wall. Atta girl! Weevil/Peter checks on Elle (I'd forgotten they sort of had a little thing when Peter was a Primatech captive) as all the Level 5ers escape, and Mr. Bennett drags Sylar into a cell.

Hiro and Ando rummage through Daphne’s apartment, looking for the formula. Hiro decides that they need to set a trap for Daphne, like Batman does for Catwoman. Ugh - it's time to start segueing from geek Hiro to cool future Hiro. Back in the Texas hospital, Peter and Nathan confer. Peter drops the glamour hiding his scar and confesses to having shot Nathan. He says that he was trying to save the world but he doesn’t think he has – everything being different now and all. Nathan asks what he should do about the senatorship; Peter says he has to make the right choices and then teleports out, “to set things right.”

Nathan calls Tracy and says he’ll take the senatorship but he wants her on his staff. “If that’s what it takes,” she says happily. But reporter William Katz catches her in the parking garage, this time with a video of Niki and Nathan screwing that time in Las Vegas. Tracy, still insisting that it’s not her, gets upset and grabs the reporter. Her hitherto hidden ability suddenly manifests itself: freezing him solid. His body shatters and immediately starts to melt into oozy little pieces. Now that’s an original power!

Back on Level 5, Mrs. Petrelli shows up to take over Primatech. She pulls a serious bitchitude on poor Elle, firing her from the Company since her electrical output shorted out the cells, allowing over a dozen inmates to escape, and also Mr. Bennett. Elle is shattered, speechless. She’s worked for the Company for her entire life and now, with her father dead and her job taken from her, has no idea what to do. Go find Weevil/Peter, is my suggestion.

While Hiro and Ando argue in Daphne’s apartment, she shows up. He holds her high school track medal hostage until she agrees to hand over the formula. But – surprise! - she tricks them, holding a knife to Ando’s throat until Hiro lets her get away. Hiro has been sneaky, however, and has planted a tracking device on her and they teleport after her as she rushes off.

A post-coital Mohinder lurches from his bed, not feeling well. He staggers into the bathroom, blinking at the light, and reaches over his shoulder. Eeuuw: he pulls something out of his back, like a scale or a spike or something. His back is covered in these ruptures. Did I not say The Fly earlier? At the hospital, Lindeman says he’s glad that Nathan decided to take the senatorship. When a nurse comes to tell Nathan that it’s time for bed, Nathan realizes that no one can see Lindeman but him. I totally called that one.

Parkman wakes up as he thinks a tortoise is telling him that he can get water from a nearby shrub. It’s not actually the tortoise speaking, however, but a man. The man tells Parkman he’s in Africa and tells him to walk with him. Parkman doesn’t want to walk. The man says Parkman has to do a spirit walk for many miles, and calls him by name, telling him that he isn’t supposed to be here, that Parkman’s being in Africa means the future is not how he has painted it. Another freakin’ future painter? Are you kidding me?

At home, Claire finds her dad in his office. He gives her a huge hug and she holds onto him like a life preserver. When she asks if he’s staying, he shows her the files of all the bad guys who escapes from Level 5: a flame thrower, a magnetic force manipulator, a guy who eats others’ fear and turns it into his own strength; Mr. Bennett won’t tell her what power Weevil/Peter (“Jesse”) has, though – too scary. Claire wants to come with him, to help. But the Bennetts have called Claire’s real mom to come make sure she stays safe. You know, I’m not sure Claire’s flame-throwing birth mother is the best choice of babysitters.

Scar-Peter teleports into Level 5 and is horrified to find that the person he put Now Peter into is gone. Mrs. Petrelli is there, however, and she is pissed, shouting at Scar-Peter to find Jesse and bring her son home - “And go back the hell to where you came from!” Out on the streets, Jesse/Peter leaves a message for Nathan, warning him about Scar-Peter but another Level 5er drags him away before he can finish. The Level 5ers are killing people at a gas station and Jesse/Peter is horrified. As approaching sirens scream in the distance, Jesse/Peter gets in the car and escapes with the others. Seriously, I’m so pleased to see Francis Capra again.

Ick. This is creepy. Mrs. Petrelli comes into Sylar’s cell and unties him, saying that her sons have been such disappointments, but that she can give him what all boys crave from their mothers: inspiration, comfort, support. He snarls that she is not his mother. She leans over him and whispers, “But I am, dear, I am.”

Next time on Heroes / previously on Heroes

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