Friday, October 26, 2007

Heroes Season Two

First, before you watch season two, or read this review, you probably should have seen Heroes Season One by now. In other words: Spoiler Alert

I really enjoyed season one of this show. I did feel like the season finale didn't feel so much like a high-impact season finale as it did a pause in the story, the end of an arc. And to be honest I was okay with that.

So far this season, well, I'm not as interested. Each Monday I look forward to Chuck and then watch Heroes because it's on next. I won't say it's dissapointing, it's not. But it's just not fascinating. Once, I tried to explain to a friend how each episode of first season ended not on a cliff-hanger but on a "Oh my gosh, REALLY?" moment.

My prime example of that is when you learn that Nathan is Claire's father. The ends of the episodes almost always were a moment where you got a vital piece of the mythos, where you learned a little more about how everybody was connected. Where suddenly you knew something that you didn't know and you didn't get any screen time to acclimate to the idea.

I can't think of any endings this season that have had that kind of impact. Nothing that has made me gasp and say, "What?" Every moment like that is firmly entrenched in the middle of the hour. Then we almost immediatly get the explanation after the commercial break. While I'm also not a fan of the Lost school of thought where you give questions and more questions but no answers. But when you get the answers too quickly, in a show like Heroes, you just start to get bored.

But honestly, that I could live with, I'd just be a little bored. It's not the worst thing that's happening this season.

I read a an interview in Entertainment Weekly where one of the creators said that he realized he had all these heroes and he "may as well" start having them hook up.

Yup, seemingly on a whim he decided to make this season "Heroes with Hormones" instead of having interesting plots. Suddenly, we have West who seems to have been created to be Claire's boyfriend. West is one-dimensional and creepy, there is no better way to say it. He looks and acts like the season one version of Clark Kent on Smallville . Only he also has the distinction of being an "outsider." Only, any real high school outsider could easily tell the creators that he's acting like what people think high school outsiders are like, not what they really are. And he's just plain creepy. He's a STALKER. Let's remember girls: boys who stare at you through your windows without letting you know they're there? They are peeping toms, not hopeless romantics.

I'm already bored with Peter and his girlfriend because they did the typical tv course of romance: they happen to be of the opposite sex and in the same place, he does something heroic, they dance around the attraction for about ten seconds, they kiss hesitantly once, and then they make out like rabbits. I don't believe them for a second. I do like her accent though, and I liked her interactions with her brother. So she's one-up on West.

The only relationship that I'm more or less okay with is Hiro's "unrequited" love. Maybe it's because the entire situation seems to be taken straight from a manga (and honestly, one scene of the swordsmith's daughter and I was calling her Kaoru) or maybe it's because his attraction to her seems so sweet and genuine. Claire and Peter don't seem to be really in love, just hormonal. I don't know if this is the writers' fault or the actor's. But I'm assuming writers, because Claire had the distinction of being one of the first television teenagers I actually liked.

I won't stop watching the show any time soon, that's for certain. I would still like to own a copy of Heroes Season One. But the show needs to take a deep breath, find it's direction, and move ahead. It needs to capture the storytelling that it had last season, the pace, and perhaps make their "Nightmare Man" (the moniker literally made me laugh out loud) as threatening and fascinating as Sylar.

Or just give Sylar more screen time. Zachary Quinto is now one of my favorite actors, he could carry the show by himself.