Heroes Discussion: ‘Six Months Ago’

This episode shows the heroes six months ago. Chandra Suresh, Mohinder’s father, arrives in New York looking for special people. He meets up with an individual that embraces the chance to be unique. Peter graduates from nursing school. Nathan plans to prosecute a case that could cause complications for the Petrellis. Niki receives a visit from her father which brings out the worst in her. Hiro tries to alter the future for someone important to him. Claire discovers her abilities right after joining the cheerleading squad, and her father meets up with someone special.

21 replies on “Heroes Discussion: ‘Six Months Ago’”

  1. pythor says:

    I thought…
    At the beginning of the episode, I thought, "OK, he’s going to save Charlie, but that messes up the timeline, and the Cheerleaser dies. Then he’s going to have to fix that, too." Obviously, that didn’t happen. What I’m confused about now is whether he saved Charlie from Sylar or not. I know he didn’t save her, but with the whole brain tumor thing, I wonder if she died from that, and not Sylar.
    We now have proof that Sylar somehow absorbs powers from other heroes’ brains. Not sure yet whether he literaly eats the brain. This was strongly hinted at before, but some people were arguing the point.
    Is the Sylar plot over? Either he escapes, or it pretty much has to be. Although it looks like they’re setting up Eve to be a real "bad guy" too. Maybe she’ll let him escape. Since they still have the nuclear man plot, I can see that they may drop this one.
    Actually, maybe not. The writers are quite fond of entangling everything, even when it doesn’t seem to need it. I imagine that Sylar’s got something to do with nuclear man, that we just don’t know about, yet.
    Is Jessica really Jessica? Or is she a submerged personality of Nikki, who just uses the dead girl’s name? Depends on whether Jessica was the hero (capable of possesing other people maybe?) or Nikki is. Maybe Nikki has the power, but doesn’t want to admit it, and is using the mpd as an excuse. They did that with The Hulk once or twice.

    • valen1260 says:

      Re: I thought…

      What I’m confused about now is whether he saved Charlie from Sylar or not. I know he didn’t save her, but with the whole brain tumor thing, I wonder if she died from that, and not Sylar.

      IIRC, Ando was at the "Charlie shrine" when Hiro returned. Since the writers have (so far) handled Hiro’s time-travel with subtlety, I don’t think we have to worry about alternate timelines or anything.

      We now have proof that Sylar somehow absorbs powers from other heroes’ brains. Not sure yet whether he literaly eats the brain. This was strongly hinted at before, but some people were arguing the point.

      Count me in that group, though I was just waiting for the evidence. According to Chandra, Gabriel had no powers (kudos for a nice bit of misdirection on the writer’s part with the watch). "Sylar" does apparently steal powers, but its still unclear how. I find it very hard to believe that a watch maker can perform brain surgery on anyone, let alone himself. Ingesting the brain seems the more obvious path, but it seems unlikely one would assimilate someone’s DNA (or whatever) through eating it. Perhaps, if it’s a cancer as Chandra explained (and Charlie’s clot/tumor could support), the cancer could maybe take a new host. But, then, a cancer that causes mutant healing would have to be pretty "intelligent" not to heal itself away.

      Is the Sylar plot over? Either he escapes, or it pretty much has to be. Although it looks like they’re setting up Eve to be a real "bad guy" too. Maybe she’ll let him escape. Since they still have the nuclear man plot, I can see that they may drop this one.

      I’ve yet to buy into the "radioactive man blows up NYC" plot, but you’re correct about plot entanglement. Eve seemed pretty reformed when told to persuade Isaac to use drugs, but could still revert to her very evil ways.

      Is Jessica really Jessica? Or is she a submerged personality of Nikki, who just uses the dead girl’s name?

      I wondered this myself. Good idea with the possession thing, though.

      Overall, "Six Months Ago" was far better than I—and I think many others—had expected. It gave us insight into the characters, rather than just concentrating on saving Charlie.

      BTW, I noticed Christine Rose was in the credits, but not the episode, so she must be a regular now.

      • pythor says:

        Re: I thought…

        What I’m confused about now is whether he saved Charlie from Sylar or not. I know he didn’t save her, but with the whole brain tumor thing, I wonder if she died from that, and not Sylar.

        IIRC, Ando was at the "Charlie shrine" when Hiro returned. Since the writers have (so far) handled Hiro’s time-travel with subtlety, I don’t think we have to worry about alternate timelines or anything.

        I’m can easily believe that a shrine would be created for a well liked coworker who died of a brain tumor. I think there’s a possibility that Sylar didn’t get her.

        According to Chandra, Gabriel had no powers (kudos for a nice bit of misdirection on the writer’s part with the watch).

        I didn’t see this as misdirection, but as direction. I think Chandra was wrong. Imagine what he would have found if he had tested Nathan the way he did Gabriel. I don’t expect that just anyone could absorb a hero’s power by extracting their brain. Admittedly, they haven’t said one way or the other, yet.

        "Sylar" does apparently steal powers, but its still unclear how. I find it very hard to believe that a watch maker can perform brain surgery on anyone, let alone himself.

        Again, this is evidence to me that Gabriel had some original power, though I’m not sure what. I think his speech gave hints to it.

        Is Jessica really Jessica? Or is she a submerged personality of Nikki, who just uses the dead girl’s name?

        I wondered this myself. Good idea with the possession thing, though.

        Overall, "Six Months Ago" was far better than I—and I think many others—had expected. It gave us insight into the characters, rather than just concentrating on saving Charlie.

        It certainly held up to par for the show. A lot of people wanted to see Charlie saved, but the story works better this way. I’m really looking forward to next week, but NOT looking forward to the long break.

    • y42 says:

      Re: I thought…

      What I’m confused about now is whether he saved Charlie from Sylar or not. I know he didn’t save her, but with the whole brain tumor thing, I wonder if she died from that, and not Sylar.

      Sylar. He can’t go back in time to save her, because she wouldn’t get killed and he wouldn’t go back in time, so since he wouldn’t go back, she WOULD get killed, thenGreato Scott!

      We now have proof that Sylar somehow absorbs powers from other heroes’ brains.

      Told ya so!

      Not sure yet whether he literaly eats the brain. This was strongly hinted at before, but some people were arguing the point.
      Is the Sylar plot over? Either he escapes, or it pretty much has to be.

      His power seems to be to detect ‘flaws’, anomalies in a person’s physiology (or in a watch mechanism) and he applies his watchmaking skills accordingly (his powers also appears to let him know instinctively how to ‘fix’ the anomaly… he feels and understands the anomaly).
      So he decides to collect the brain and ‘surgically’ extract the part in it that gives the person his power, and then… I dunno how he wetwires it to himself, so I’m guessing he eats it, like the old cannibal animist belief that says that if you eat a slain enemy’s brain you will gain his strength (or get kreusfeld-jacob’s disease, whichever).

      So, his quest isn’t over, because Claire’s dad might have Mesmero working for him, but Sylar (the wacthmaker who calls himself a watch) has a few tricks up his sleeve.

      • y42 says:

        Call me Hiro :P

        I’m guessing he eats it, like the old cannibal animist belief that says that if you eat a slain enemy’s brain you will gain his strength (or get kreusfeld-jacob’s disease, whichever).

        Great Scott! I just realized Sylar ate the brain of a girl with a malignant brain tumor!

        Had he then eaten Claire’s rapid healing factor, he would be safe, but now it’s going to kill him! Save the cheerleader, save the world!

        Plus, I’m sure exposure to radioactive man would be likely to aggravate such a condition, just ask his late wife. Haha, I love this show!

      • Radish03 says:

        Re: I thought…

        His power seems to be to detect ‘flaws’, anomalies in a person’s physiology (or in a watch mechanism) and he applies his watchmaking skills accordingly (his powers also appears to let him know instinctively how to ‘fix’ the anomaly… he feels and understands the anomaly).
        So he decides to collect the brain and ‘surgically’ extract the part in it that gives the person his power, and then… I dunno how he wetwires it to himself, so I’m guessing he eats it, like the old cannibal animist belief that says that if you eat a slain enemy’s brain you will gain his strength (or get kreusfeld-jacob’s disease, whichever).

        So, his quest isn’t over, because Claire’s dad might have Mesmero working for him, but Sylar (the wacthmaker who calls himself a watch) has a few tricks up his sleeve.

        I definitely agree with you on Sylar’s power. I got the idea, from the point where he looks at the TK guy (forgot his name) and tells him he’s broken, that Sylar has some sort of intuition regarding the way things are put together and function.

        If this is the case, though, I wonder how he managed to get the wrong cheerleader so easily. If he can look at someone and see that they have a power or something, he should have recognized that she was mundane.

        On the subject of Charlie, I was really upset that that storyline seemed to end so abruptly. I didn’t really get a sense of closure–they didn’t make it evident how she died, so I was left with the assumption that Sylar still killed her. And I’m still not comfortable with the time travel thing, in general. If that picture of Charlie and Hiro existed to be put up after she was murdered, shouldn’t she have recognized Hiro when he and Ando are first in the restaraunt in episode 8? If that picture somehow popped into existence after Hiro went back in time and met Charlie, isn’t that evidence that the past can be changed, contrary to what the narration at the end of the episode suggests? I don’t know if I’m being nit-picky or not, but this really doesn’t sit well with me.

        I mostly just want another "Six Months Ago" type episode because I thought there was more they could have done with the storylines.

        Also, nice (and subtle) X-Files reference in your post there :)

        • y42 says:

          SPOILERS btw…

          I’m still not comfortable with the time travel thing, in general. If that picture of Charlie and Hiro existed to be put up after she was murdered, shouldn’t she have recognized Hiro when he and Ando are first in the restaraunt in episode 8?

          She did, she remembers it all perfectly. She even tells him she got a Japanese phrasebook for her birthday (he gave it to her). She knows she’s going to die, too.

          I think it’s wonderful that even though he can’t save her, he can fall in love with her and spend six wonderful months with her. He couldn’t have saved her anyway, she has cancer, but if she hadn’t been killed he wouldn’t have gone back to share her last six months. It’s a cute and tragic "better to have loved" story of time travel, IMHO.

          • belzedaar says:

            Re: SPOILERS btw…
            My issue with this episode is that it says you can’t change the past. That implies you can’t change the future, either, because the future is just someone else’s past. There’s nothing special about "now" – the ability to time travel at all means that all times are equally valid. So there should be no way they can prevent bad things happening in the future either.

        • vanyel says:

          Re: I thought…

          I got the idea, from the point where he … tells him he’s broken, that Sylar has some sort of intuition

          Yes, Sylar definitely has a power, the mechanism just isn’t showing up on Chandra’s instruments.

          If this is the case, though, I wonder how he managed to get the wrong cheerleader so easily.

          Good point! Though perhaps he was probing her trying to find her power’s locus and was just about to realize his mistake when he was interrupted…

          On the subject of Charlie, I was really upset that that storyline seemed to end so abruptly.

          Except for the fact that she would have remembered him, I had the feeling that his unplanned zip to the present around the world kept him from interfering with Charlie’s demise at the hands of Sylar. With time travel stories, you can’t hardly help but have little inconsistencies like that though.

          • Cerberus7 says:

            Re: I thought…

            If this is the case, though, I wonder how he managed to get the wrong cheerleader so easily.

            Good point! Though perhaps he was probing her trying to find her power’s locus and was just about to realize his mistake when he was interrupted…

            Or maybe they saved the wrong cheerleader, and it was the bitchy one that was supposed to save the world. Probably not, but it sure would be funny!

        • TomSwiss says:

          Re: I thought…

          Sylar has some sort of intuition regarding the way things are put together and function.

          Agreed, Sylar’s super-power is that he’s got The Knack.

  2. Jethro says:

    Wow
    I am EXTREMELY impressed that when this episode ended everything was pretty much the same as when it started. But in a good way, not in a Star Trek way. We got a OT of background on just about everyone and they didn’t deus-ex-machina the entire season. Well done.

    Sylar sucking powers out of peoples’ brains was pretty cool, too.

  3. jayhawk88 says:

    Isn’t it interesting
    How Sylar and Peter essentially seem to have the same "power" of power stealing/borrowing, albeit in dramatically different ways? I have a feeling that we have not seen the end of Sylar.

    • y42 says:

      Re: Isn’t it interesting

      How Sylar and Peter essentially seem to have the same "power" of power stealing/borrowing, albeit in dramatically different ways? I have a feeling that we have not seen the end of Sylar.

      Yes, VERY interresting ;-D

      • pythor says:

        Re: Isn’t it interesting

        How Sylar and Peter essentially seem to have the same "power" of power stealing/borrowing, albeit in dramatically different ways? I have a feeling that we have not seen the end of Sylar.

        Yes, VERY interresting ;-D

        Absolutely. I was kinda hoping that Peter was Sylar. I figured, Peter could absorb Hiro’s time travel, and end up in the past. Either before or after that, he goes nuts, turning into a psychopath. Along the way, he also figures out how to permanently extract whatever part of the person he needs to be close to to share their power. It was a very nice story. ;)
        I’m a little disappointed with the sheer ordinariness of Sylar. We’ll have to see where it goes.

        • valen1260 says:

          Re: Isn’t it interesting

          I figured, Peter could absorb Hiro’s time travel, and end up in the past.

          Hmmm… makes you wonder about the encounter on the train. Is that why Peter wasn’t frozen (a copied "immunity" to the effect)? What kept Peter, at that point, from sneezing himself 1000 years away?

          • jayhawk88 says:

            Re: Isn’t it interesting

            I figured, Peter could absorb Hiro’s time travel, and end up in the past.

            Hmmm… makes you wonder about the encounter on the train. Is that why Peter wasn’t frozen (a copied "immunity" to the effect)? What kept Peter, at that point, from sneezing himself 1000 years away?

            My theory for how this will all eventually end is Peter absorbing the powers of many or perhaps all of the "specials" (to keep with the Rising Stars ripoff theme ;) to save the world from destruction (which I don’t necessarily believe to be the nuclear explosion) or to battle the "big boss villain" (Skylar?). You think about the power set he can potentially have available to him; flight, super strength and regeneration alone puts him at almost Superman levels, let alone time manipulation, precognition, telepathy, telekinesis, and intangibility (a power which incidentally makes me wonder if DL could do the reverse and increase his density to the point of invulnerability?). It all seems very geeky for prime-time TV but I see Jeph Loeb’s name in the credits so you never know.

            • valen1260 says:

              Re: Isn’t it interesting

              My theory for how this will all eventually end is Peter absorbing the powers of many or perhaps all of the "specials" (to keep with the Rising Stars ripoff theme ;) to save the world…. You think about the power set he can potentially have available to him; flight, super strength and regeneration alone puts him at almost Superman levels, let alone time manipulation, precognition, telepathy, telekinesis, and intangibility

              You get points for being a Rising Stars fan. ;) Though, he’s not really absorbing powers. As far as we know, he only borrows them while in the vicinity of the Hero, and maybe for a short duration after that (more X-Men Synch than Petersen Special). We’ve seen no evidence of a (Rising Stars spoiler) shared "power pool" (I’d be outraged if there were).

              But, yes, I’ve thought along these lines. Alone, their powers are mostly superficial, but combined, they could do some good (or, at least, summon Captain Planet).

        • GrimSean says:

          Re: Isn’t it interesting

          How Sylar and Peter essentially seem to have the same "power" of power stealing/borrowing, albeit in dramatically different ways? I have a feeling that we have not seen the end of Sylar.

          I’m a little disappointed with the sheer ordinariness of Sylar. We’ll have to see where it goes.

          Spoilered:
          I think it will end up that Sylar becomes Peter and Nathan’s Dad – the depression issues come from knowing that he’s going to kill all those people, and he kills himself right about when he could have stopped himself from becoming Sylar.

          • y42 says:

            Re: Isn’t it interesting

            I think it will end up that Sylar becomes Peter and Nathan’s Dad

            Er… Sylar is their age, and living after their dad died, and he’s a single watchmaker, not a lawyer nor a father…

  4. Trekkie says:

    I Can’t Help…
    …but feel a little empty after watching the episode. While it gave some backstory, it really didn’t progress anything forward and seemed like a filler only to fuck us next week when they shut it off for no reason other than to dick with you until next year.

    I really like the show but recently it seems like they’re dragging out the build up instead of getting it done. I’d really like my story to progress instead of taking 60 min to introduce 4 min of plot enhancements.

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