Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Heroes - The Second Coming/The Butterfly Effect

Admittedly season two of Heroes was a disappointment. We had the annoying addition of supernatural twins Maya and Alejandro. In my opinion, the writers killed off the wrong twin. Hiro spent most of the time in the 17th century. Nathan spent too much time looking like Grizzly Adams. Peter was trapped in a box with amnesia. And the three M's--Matt, Mohinder and Molly--were playing house in Manhattan.

Looks like season three is off to a much better start. Nathan survived the assassination attempt, thanks to the healing powers of a resurrected Mr. Linderman. Oh, but the catch is no-one but Nathan can see Malcolm McDowell. And Nathan's assassin? None other than brother Peter, who came from the future to prevent Nathan from disclosing the secrets of the heroes. Future Peter is on the lam, screwing up the present while present Peter is trapped in the body of a Level 5 escapee named Jesse. Oh, and it that weren't enough for the Petrelli family, mom Angela has taken over the Company following the death of Bob and reveals to Sylar that she's his mom.

No doubt it will make for fun times at the next family reunion!

Still with me? Okay, Sylar manages to get Claire's regenerative power making him pretty much unstoppable. (Was anyone else confused at how--if Sylar had lost all his abilities as he himself said, he managed to throw Claire up against the wall and laser her scalp via telekinesis?) He lets Claire live, however, telling her that even among the special she's special and that her brain is different. It seems though, that when he assimilates her power (and not by eating brains which, as he says, is "disgusting"), he removed her ability to feel pain.

After Sylar acquires Claire's power, he heads off to Level 5 where the company has the evil villains like Adam detained. He kills Bob and takes his ability and is about to kill Elle, when she emits an electrical charge that disables him long enough to be captured. Unfortunately, the charge shuts down the grid and allows a dozen bad guys--including present Peter trapped in baddie Jesse's body (and Milo Ventimiglia played "Jess" on Gilmore Girls!)--to go on a rampage. Angela uses this as a reason to "fire" Elle from the Company. (Apparently other than producing superpowered spawn, Angela has the ability to see the future--and it's looking really grim!)

Noah Bennet also escapes Level 5 and is reunited with his family. He has to leave, however, to track down the evil escapees--but he leaves Claire and the rest of the Bennets in good hands: Claire's biological mom--the human flamethrower.

Hiro and Ando are together again. This time chasing after the two halves of a formula that will destroy the world. Although cautioned in a message from his deceased dad not to open the safe that kept the formula secure, Hiro ignores the warning and the formula is stolen by "speedster" Daphne Millbrook. Hiro visits the future to see the result of the formula in the wrong hands and witnesses his murder at the hands of Ando. This puts a bit of a crimp in their relationship. Hiro and Ando set off after Daphne to retrieve the formula.

Did Niki die in that fire last season? Maybe. maybe not. Ali Larter is back--but this time as Tracy Strauss, the Ice Queen of K Street. Tracy's resemblance to Niki throws Nathan off when she comes to offer him the vacant senatorial seat. "Do you think you know me?" she asks. "The word "biblically" comes to mind," Nathan replies. Great line. Turns out Tracy is a REAL Ice Queen--having the power of turning things--including a nosy reporter--to ice. Anyone else get the obviously planned irony of having said nosy reporter played by William Katt, aka "Greatest American Hero."


Meanwhile, we're down to two M's with Mohinder and Maya. Molly has apparently been shipped off somewhere for her safety. Wonder if that's where Micah ended up as well...Mohinder's packing up to return to India, much to Maya's dismay. She wants him to cure her ability. Mohinder makes the connection between Maya's moods and her plague inducing ability and deduces the powers are in the adrenal glands. He is able to make a serum that creates rather than cures abilities. He injects himself and turns into Spiderman. It's really creepy. But even more creepy than the ugly skin condition he develops as a side effect, was the icky love scene between Mohinder and Maya. Let's hope Angela sics Sylar on the two of them and SOON!

As for the third M: Matt gets wise to future Peter who flings him into the Sahara desert for much of the episode. As he collapses from heat exhaustion, a turtle tells him that he can obtain water from the plant. But it wasn't really a turtle, but some African tribal guy who has quite the sense of humor. He asks Matt if he knows Britney Spears and when Matt asks to borrow his cell phone, tribal guy says "No Service. Should've gone with Sprint." It was funny--even if it was an obvious product plug. Turns out tribal guy paints the future just like season one casualty Isaac. And "Park-man," as he calls Matt, is not supposed to be there.

Whew! Part one's title comes from W. B. Yeats' apocalyptic poem (a favorite of mine!):

Turning and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the center cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.
Surely some revelation is at hand;
Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi
Troubles my sight: somewhere in sands of the desert
A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
Reel shadows of the indignant desert birds.
The darkness drops again; but now I know
That twenty centuries of stony sleep
Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?

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