by Jason Hughes, posted Nov 11th 2008 12:50AM
(S03E08) Maybe they should have done this one a little earlier in the season. There was only one scene set in the present era, but it was a good one. The rest of the episode was "One Year Ago," weaving and interlacing with the events we did see during the show's first season, showing us what a lot of the characters we either didn't know or didn't follow then were up to, like Ma and Pa Petrelli, Linderman, Gabriel, Elle and even Claire's mother and uncle.
I remember that the second season was supposed to explore the elder generation, revealing more of their connections to one another and their motivations. We were going to learn more about The Company and what they were up to in regards to Peter and the rest of our main cast. It looks like those aborted promises are finally coming to fruition. It's unfortunate that the last season and so much of the start of this season was so lackluster, as things are really coming together nicely. And we're gaining sympathy for almost every member of the cast by learning more about them.
The kinder, gentler Sylar was more fully explored in this "One Year Ago" episode. I'm still not 100% on board with the idea of this guy who was such a murdering monster being made sympathetic to the point that we could actually not only feel sorry for his struggles, but like him and root for him to do better. Tonight, we met him shortly after his first kill, and he's consumed with remorse and attempts suicide. This is a far cry from the Sylar of Season One.
I guess it makes him akin to a serial murderer or other type of criminal who has compulsions they're not able to fight off. Even if you feel bad for those people, they're dangerous and still monsters. Their urges make it so. But now, if Heroes lore is to be believed, the only really villainous monster left is Arthur Petrelli. We got to see the more "evil" HRG this time around, working with Elle and see that these two were the orchestrators of turning Gabriel into the serial killer we first met.
So, HRG was an evil bastard, but now we kind of like him. Elle was this psycho villain, but she had daddy issues and now we kind of like her. Sylar was the boogeyman we all read about, slaughtering god knows how many people, but now we kind of like him. Hell, Flint is one of the Level 5 escapees we're supposed to be terrified of, but now we know that not only is he Meredith's brother, but he may be mentally deficient.
Angela Petrelli was a cold-hearted bitch who seemed willing to do anything to push forth her mysterious agenda, but now we kind of like her. And we learned that Arthur was controlling her mind the whole time. So he must have picked up this ability from Papa Parkman without taking his ability away or killing him. I wonder if this means he just has a greater level of control over the same ability his sons have.
And how about that last scene. Poor Usutu. What is it about future painters? Did they know they were getting rid of Jeph Loeb so eliminated any more need for real artist Tim Sale to stay involved with the show? Just like I liked Isaac, I liked Usutu and he didn't deserve to have his head lopped off and tossed across the desert like that. Damn that Arthur Petrelli. What the hell is going to happen to Hiro now?
So let's see. There was no Parkman, Daphne, Tracy, Claire (for the most part) or Mohinder (for the most part) and I didn't really miss them. It's weird because I still like Matt as a character, even though he's been mostly useless this season, but it shows that this show could used with some streamlining of characters and storylines. You don't have to tell all your stories at the same time. Pace yourselves, guys.
|Yes, this episode was great!||306 (35.5%)|
|It's starting to fix itself.||367 (42.6%)|
|No, it's completely derailed.||86 (10.0%)|
|I don't think it can even see the track anymore.||103 (11.9%)|