If there’s one shrewd thing that The Walking Dead has done in the last couple of years, it’s the show’s willingness to focus on a couple of characters for a whole episode excluding the rest of the expansive cast. The advantage is that you can enjoy a subplot from beginning to end without being taken away to other stories, some of which may be meandering, metaphorically walking in a circle, as the rest of the narrative catches up. This thought occurred to me while watching the latest episode of Heroes Reborn, which made some marvelous leaps in story, but we had to sit threw other stuff in-between that zapped those portions of any momentum.
The prime momentum zapper this week is the ongoing drama of Luke Collins, who after burning down his home and selling his dentistry practice last week, buys a boat and tries to commit suicide by throwing himself into a lake wearing a backpack full of bricks. First off all, what a lame way to kill himself. I get the connection between the boat and his dead kid, but wouldn’t it have just been easier if Luke let himself burn up when he set his house on fire?
Of course, if Luke had done that then he wouldn’t have been saved by Malina who somehow made it from northern Quebec to western New York on the back of a lumber truck without being detected by the driver or border patrol agents. Anyway, Malina and Luke’s paths cross, and Malina over shares about her destiny with a man she hardly knows, without realizing that just a few weeks ago he was on a mission to kill evos like her, that she’s looking for a boy she’s never met to help her save the world. Fortunately for Malina, Luke never had the chance to finish off Tommy, and he knows exactly where to find the teleporting kind.
Also a diversion this week was Tommy’s budding romance with Emily. As much as these two teens are adorable in their super-powered romance, and as much as their almost sickeningly sweet side trip to Paris was actually pretty well rendered by Heroes standards, I couldn’t help but feel diverted from the main thrust of this week’s story, which saw Noah and Quentin team with Miko and Ren in order to finally achieve an object that unlocks the bigger mystery. I still think Tommy’s story has been one of the better developments of Reborn, and Emily’s loving prodding of Tommy to get him to believe he can save the world, which culminates in their first kiss, was cute and all, but this week should have been all about saving a hero. Or do I mean Hiro?
So it turned out I was half right, and that Erica was sending the seed bank to the future, but in actuality Miko was not Hiro’s daughter from the future. No, she was actually a video game creation made for the sole purpose of freeing Hiro from his video game prison. How any of that makes sense, I don’t know. We find out that in order to exploit Hiro’s power, he was being kept inside the Evermore video game because time doesn’t exist there, thus nullifying his abilitues. I know this show is about people with super-powers, but going full Captain N the Game Master with this development strained credulity to say the least.
Next week, Heroes Reborn will be more than half over, so it’s a good time to free some weight among the cast. We say goodbye to Miko, who may have been a walking logical fallacy, but was an undeniably charismatic presence on the show. When Ren tells her he loves her before Miko heads back into Evermore one last time, and she says “I know” back, it was not only a fun Star Wars reference, but it was it neatly summed up her character and the dynamic she shared with Ren, her would be white knight.
We also say goodbye to Quentin who, let’s face it, didn’t do much. Between getting Noah back in the game in episode one, and trying to get his sister Phoebe, “the Shadow” girl, to stop using her abilities for evil incorporated, he didn’t do much, and just when I asked out loud what exactly the point was in keeping Quentin in the mix, he’s killed by his sister who’s in the process of flipping out because Quentin and friends are “ruining things.” Despite Quentin’s frequent uselessness, you almost shed a tear when Noah tells a dying Quentin, “You did good, buddy.”
In the end, Hiro is freed, and he and Noah escape back in time to June 13 to discover exactly what happened that day in Odessa. Next week is the first of a two-parter that will shed light on that whole tragedy, and how the events of that day connect to Erica’s rapidly coming apart plan to save the world from a solar eruption. Obviously, the series has been building up to this, but here again we see momentum stalled not just by having our attention split between too many stories, but by now taking a step back. Is the reason why we’re doing this now is because we needed a reason to bring Hiro back?
The only real dangling thread is Carlos, who while appearing somewhat intelligent in his handling of Captain Dearing and the quest to find his nephew so far, make’s a totally rookie mistake. I don’t care how much rapport you have with your prisoner, you don’t drink some weird liquid that they give you and say won’t do you any harm. Presumably, Taylor’s path and Carlo’s will intersect now as they pursue loved ones, and speaking of Taylor anyone want to put money on the likelihood that Mohinder is the one behind the so-called “Hero Truther” group?
Despite the fact that we’re only six episodes in, it’s felt like it’s taken even longer to get this far in the story, but now that Hiro’s in the picture and the next couple of weeks have the promise of an info-dump, we have the expectation that the story will take a great leap forward. Clearly, Erica is not enjoying these monkey wrenches being thrown into her careful plan, so there’s definitely something more sinister in her so-called altruistic plan, right? I guess we’ll mind out next week.