Heroes Volume Three, Chapter Three: One of Us, One of Them

Another fast-paced corker of an episode kicks off in the Level Five prison facility, where Angela Petrelli tells Sylar she’s going to take good care of him from now on. She strokes his face and nuzzles him in a most inappropriate manner, which might the creepiest thing she’s done to date, seeing as: a) he’s her son, and b) he’s Sylar. Angela releases Sylar’s restraints and sends in Bridget, a young woman with the ability to see the history of any object she touches, for the purpose of “feeding” him. Angela strolls out of the cell as Bridget screams in terror. Remember back in Season One when Angela’s villainy was confined to shoplifting socks and maybe implying to Peter that Nathan secretly didn’t love him? You’ve come a long way, baby.

Peter, trapped in Jesse’s body, goes along with the band of rape-happy, kill-happy, super-powered escaped criminals as they knock over a bank. For such a basically decent and guileless fellow, Peter sure involves himself in a surprising number of major felonies. A soulless, violent creep named Knox (played by Jamie Hector, best known as soulless, violent Marlo on The Wire) leads the escapees. Knox’s super-power is a bit esoteric: when he’s fueled by fear (in this case, from the terrified bank hostages), he can punch straight through people. I don’t want to know how he first discovered he could do this.

In Level Five, Bennet tells Angela he wants to hunt down the escapees. Since the Haitian is on another assignment, Angela gives Bennet a new partner: Sylar.

This will work out swimmingly.

In Costa Verde, Sandra Bennet serves waffles to Claire’s birth mother Meredith and puts up with far too much sullen backtalk from Claire, who wants to drop out of school and become a crimefighter. Sandra shoots down this idea, but Claire plays hooky so Meredith can teach her how to fight. Meredith locks Claire inside a metal trailer and uses her ability to start a fire and burn up all the oxygen. As Claire suffocates, Meredith interrogates her as to her motivations for wanting to fight evil. Claire confesses she wants to hurt Sylar for attacking her. Meredith urges Claire to just be a normal teenager.

Later, Sandra and Meredith get into a standard-issue birth mother-versus-adoptive mother squabble when Sandra confronts Meredith about helping Claire cut school. The Ghost of Tedious Cheerleading Plotlines Past rears its short-skirted and pony-tailed head when Claire scampers off to a cheerleader sleepover retreat. Luckily, it’s all a ruse: with Bennet’s top-secret Company files in tow, Claire skips town and heads off to hunt Sylar on her own.

On the trail of the stolen formula, Hiro and Ando track Daphne to a movie theater in Berlin. Hiro and Daphne lose their powers, thanks to the proximity of the Haitian, whom Hiro remembers, not fondly, from Season One’s Evil Alternate Future episode. Good catch, Heroes continuity elves! Perhaps to make up for the complete lack of Mohinder this episode, Sendhil Ramamurthy’s real-life wife, Polish-born knockout Olga Sosnovska, makes an appearance as the Haitian’s contact, who gives him the other half of the formula. When Hiro embarks on some overly-complicated plan to steal the formula, Ando knocks out the Haitian and swipes it first. Hiro, who still has lingering trust issues concerning Ando, demands to know what he’s doing. Ando: “I’m being awesome!” Heh, Ando, yes, you are. While Hiro and Ando bicker, Daphne zips in and steals the formula. The Haitian revives and collars Hiro and Ando before Hiro can stop her.

In search of answers regarding her doppelganger Niki, Tracy visits a funeral home in New Orleans and finds Niki’s corpse in a coffin. (Niki, it must be said, looks suspiciously dewy and untouched for someone who died a ghastly, fiery death in an explosion). Tracy encounters Micah, who, being a sharp little fellow, instantly realizes she’s not his mother. He uses his technology-manipulating powers to do the world’s greatest Google search and discovers both Niki and Tracy were born in the same hospital on the same day.

Tracy tracks down the obstetrician listed on her birth certificate, a Doctor Zimmerman in Reseda, who initially identifies her as “Barbara”. When Tracy explains who she is, the doctor enigmatically proclaims he created her.

Matt and his African buddy take a spirit walk through the desert. We’ve yet to learn his buddy’s name, but the closed captions call him “Usutu”, so that’s what I’m going with. On a show already featuring a character named “The Haitian”, I’ll be damned if I’m going to refer to him as “The African”. Usutu shows Matt a series of precognitive paintings he’s made on rocks, all of which depict key moments in Matt’s life. The paintings include an unrealized future vision of Matt looking ecstatically happy with a wife and a baby. (It’s impossible to tell from the painting, but Matt’s future wife looks something like Daphne, or it could be psychotic loose-cannon nymphet Elle. The idea of a future Matt/Elle romantic hookup both delights and frightens me). Usutu claims the future has now been altered, and this vision will no longer comes to pass. He paints a new image of Matt carrying a dead woman. Matt vows to stop this potential future from happening.

Sylar and Bennet, whose new partnership is equal doses awesome and cornball, with perhaps a bit more emphasis on the cornball side, arrive on the scene of the bank robbery. Chaos ensues: Knox figures out Peter is an imposter, Bennet faces off against Knox, Peter uses Jesse’s powers to do something cool with shockwaves, and Evil Alternate Future Peter arrives, freezes time, separates Peter from Jesse’s body, and teleports off with Peter. Sylar and Bennet apprehend the escapees, but Sylar locks Bennet outside the bank, then kills Jesse and takes his power. Knox escapes in the hubbub.

Mohinder gives one of his episode-closing monologues over a montage of scenes: Matt spaces out in the desert, Micah mourns for his dead mother, Nathan reads the Bible, and the Haitian locks Hiro and Ando up in Level Five. Sylar, too, is returned to his cell. The Haitian asks Bennet if he’s been replaced as his partner by Sylar. Bennet says it’s only temporary: as soon he finds Sylar’s weakness, he’s going to kill him.

You’re three for three thus far this season, Heroes. Keep it up.

Comments

Morgan Dodge said…
I liked it despite the blatant lack of talking turtles.

Why did they have to give Hiro another dose of the do-stupid-things disease? I really want to like him, but he's pushing Claire level annoying at this point.
Morgan Richter said…
I liked it despite the blatant lack of Horny Naked Mohinder.

I'm starting to think maybe Ando is the smart one. I'm also starting to think I might like Ando more than I like Hiro.

Claire is back on probation with me. She was pretty damn obnoxious. I try hard to like her, but it's an uphill battle.
Dan said…
I'm with Boy-Morgan on the senseless lack of talking turtles. If Mohinder can turn himself into a super-horny encockroaching thing who can't even be bothered appearing in the very next episode, then imagine what he could do with a talking turtle!

This is the future of Heroes:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Super_Turtle

But apart from that misstep, an otherwise fine episode. Although I still don't understand why Claire just assumed her biological mother could expertly train her in superhero fighting techniques. Is it because she used to live in a trailer-park?
Morgan Richter said…
What I don't understand is, if Mohinder must turn himself into some sort of creature (sheesh, Mohinder), why can't it be something cute? Mohinder discovers he has amazing flying-squirrel powers and sprouts a glossy, bushy tail and adorable furry ears! Because having scaly crap growing on his back is a little off-putting, frankly.

Who else is Claire going to turn to for self-defense training? Sandra? Lyle? Her cheerleader buddy? The pickings in Costa Verde are slim. I can see how, with HRG out of town, scrappy old Meredith would be the logical choice.
Dan said…
Who else is Claire going to turn to for self-defense training?

Ahem.

Mr Muggles.
Morgan Richter said…
Of course. I stand corrected.

You can't see me, but I'm rolling my eyes right now.
Morgan Dodge said…
You know Claire is going to need a scrappy sidekick now that she's on the road fighting crime like some sort of crime fighter.

And who is scrappier than Mr Muggles? If she's not going to learn superhero fighting techniques from him, the least she could do is sidekick the little guy. I say that file box goes in the back seat and Mr Muggles rides shotgun from now on.
Morgan Richter said…
Hush, you two. You'll give someone ideas. That dog gets too much screen time already.
Dan said…
I dunno... I'm getting quite a hankering now for this Claire-Bear and Mr Muggles team-up that's got everyone in a frenzy.

Especially if they can somehow work that talking turtle in there as a wise old mentor.

Two And A Half Pets, anybody?

Ka-ching! Welcome back ratings points!
Morgan Richter said…
Only if we discover Mr. Muggles has the power of speech. That'd be awesome.

He could be voiced by Cheech Marin. Or Will Arnett. And in between wisecracks, he could dispense sage advice to Claire.

Yes. That'd boost those saggy ratings right up. I still don't know about the talking turtle, though. It stretches credulity.
Ingrid Richter said…
On a completely unrelated note, is anyone else disturbed that the "Beverly Hills Chihuahua" poster has a pronunciation guide underneath?
http://3disneyboys.files.wordpress.com/2008/04/beverly_hills_chihuahua.jpg

I think I'm going to say "Chee-Hoo-wa-Hoo-wa" just to annoy the poster...
Morgan Richter said…
I noticed that. That damn poster is up on bus stops all over L.A. It became the bane of my existence when I was hunting down the Heroes posters (which, sadly, are now a thing of the past). In fairness, the target audience of Beverly Hills Chihuahua probably can't pronounce or spell "chihuahua" without help. So maybe it's a savvy marketing ploy.
Dan said…
We always pronounce 'chihuahua' as 'chee-hoo-wa-hoo-wa' down here.

But then, you should hear how we pronounce (and, indeed, spell) 'aluminium'.
Morgan Richter said…
What a strange and wondrous country you live in, what with your kangaroos and your digiridoos and your mysterious pronunciations. I'm surprised you didn't find some way to work an extra "u" into "chihuahua", a la "colour", "honour", etcetera.
Dan said…
Huh. See, I'm surprised you didn't just drop the 'u's and spell it 'chihaha'.

Because, y'know, I'm thinking that'd be the only way to get a 'haha' anywhere near that movie.

Boom-tish.

Thank you and good night.

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