Thursday, September 10, 2009

Heroes No More

When Heroes premiered in 2006, I watched with interest. It's not a big surprise that I, the geek, would be interested in a show about comic book characters. The first episode was mildly entertaining, but I remember telling my husband that the show was a mess. But as the season progressed, I became entranced and couldn't stop myself from watching. There were a few reasons. The most obvious reason was the character, Hiro. Hiro was a young Japanese drone and ultimate geek who embraced the new powers that he developed. The actor, Masi Oka, is delightful and charismatic and made Hiro a fun character to watch. Hiro also had Ando, the best sidekick ever.

The other compelling character was HRG, who we later learned was named Noah Bennet. HRG was a company man whose mission in life was to monitor humans with powers and imprison them if necessary. His work life was hidden from his wife and children, one of whom was an adopted daughter upon whom HRG doted. The daughter, of course, was the cheerleader, who had to be saved so that the world could be saved. Jack Coleman did a great job of showing us the complications in HRG's life, as well as what he suffered for the choices he made.

But that wasn't all; the themes of Heroes was interesting. What is the meaning of family? Of loyalty? What is destiny? What is survival?

There were two things that sealed the deal for me. George Takei's role as Hiro's dad was fun and well-done. I laughed with joy when he pulled out a sword in full Sulu-style. The other deal-maker was The Company Man, an episode that focused on HRG's motivations.

The first season was far from perfect. Sylar was an interesting villain, but he was too evil. Was he an interesting villain because the actor was so good? And the big finale wasn't all that big.

It was downhill from there on out. Claire was whiny, Sylar was evil, and some Latina cried killer tears. Suresh was desparate to get powers and Hiro was stuck in medieval Japan. Nothing was believable and the characters were mangled beyond recognition. Characters would die, but would be brought back, perhaps as someone's twin! Every break, the producers would declare that they had messed up and the next chapter would bring Heroes back to what it was. Only, it never happened. It just turned into a bigger mess.

The producers are again promising that Heroes will be back, better than ever. But I don't believe them. I've already deleted the show from my DVR. Will I regret this? I doubt it.

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