Heroes Review: Four Months Ago

We finally learn what occurred between the first and second seasons. And, despite appearances, the company is apparently so evil and/or committed to whatever shadowy goals that they will keep the cure to every known disease under wraps, ignoring billions in potential profit.

Nevertheless, this episode features the plot momentum that this season has lacked.

Heroes: Four Months Ago

Cast

Milo Ventimiglio as Peter Petrelli
Adrian Pasdar as Nathan Petrelli
David Anders as Adam
Ali Larter as Gina / Niki Sanders
Leonard Roberts as DL Hawkins
Noah Gray-Cabey as Micah Sanders
Shalim Oritz as Alejandro
Dania Ramirez as Maya
Jimmy Jean-Louis as the Haitian
Stephen Tobolowsky as Bob
Kristen Bell as Elle
Nichelle Nichols as Nana Dawson
Zachary Quinto as Sylar

Premise

Peter recovers his lost memories as we learn what happened between the first and second seasons.

High Points

Adam has the potential to become a really interesting character.

We finally learn the grim origins of the Wonder Twins. While I liked that origin, I felt that this portion could have worked at the start of the season. It feels disconnected from the rest of the episode.

Low Points

Elle, equal parts Jessica, Darla from Buffy and…. Let’s just say she’s a familiar character, played to the highest levels of annoyance. It also seems odd that she has been raised inside a facility, but the company suddenly, deliberately turns her loose on society. Of course, she could be lying about her past.

Has the “exploding Peter” problem been resolved? We’re reminded of how serious a threat he presented, and then we’re returned to season two status quo, where his explosive side concerns no one. I’m calling this a low point, but we may yet receive an explanation.

The Scores

Originality: 3/6. This plays as fairly original for this show, and certainly for this season.

Effects: 5/6.

Story: 4/6. The story has momentum this week, though it is somewhat fragmented, even for a Heroes episode. Certain events lack suspense because we know how they will turn out. With the Hawkins/Sanders family, we face considerable uncertainty as to how they’re going to arrive at that conclusion.

Acting: 5/6.

Emotional Response: 4/6

Production: 5/6

Overall: 5/6 I think this has been the strongest second-season episode thus far, though still not as good as the best of the first season. I continue to find much of the dialogue artificial in ways that don’t work.

I’m giving this one five instead of four on the assumption that at least some of the questions raised will be answered. I fear, however, that some may be the result of sloppy writing.

In total, “Four Months Ago” receives 31 out of 42.

Possibly 30.

28 replies on “Heroes Review: Four Months Ago”

  1. madgnome says:

    Strike
    Given the writers strike, I doubt the questions raised will be answered. At least not this season.

    I don’t find Elle to be a low point. Maybe I find sociopaths a bit too interesting as characters. :)

    For me, the character of Maya is the low point of the whole season. I’m reserving complete judgement on the character for now because I’ve learned that given time to tell the story I will often like story lines/characters that I initially have a negative reaction to.

    • Timeshredder says:

      Re: Strike

      I don’t find Elle to be a low point. Maybe I find sociopaths a bit too interesting as characters. :)

      For me, the character of Maya is the low point of the whole

      Sociopaths can make interesting characters (though in real life, they’re a pain the ass), but they already have a blonde, coquettish sexualized but violent sociopath. They don’t need two, and I’m not overly thrilled with the performance. Maybe that’s me.

      As for Maya, yeah, she could be more interesting, but her story has so much potential that I think she bears watching. As you say, characters often develop on this show.

      • Damien says:

        Re: Strike

        they already have a blonde, coquettish sexualized but violent sociopath.

        Uh… cat fight? (fnarr!) ;-)

        Damien

      • is says:

        Re: Strike
        I agree… the Elle character comes off more annoying than anything. She’s not that hot but she’s trying to be a foxy vixen and play the dangerous games…. pretty lousy. I hope in the end Peter or Sark will crush her skull…

  2. benvking says:

    The Hatian
    1. Anybody else wonder how the Haitian suddenly was back working for the Company?

    2. And how come he is the only one with two distinct powers?

    • Babbster says:

      Re: The Hatian

      2. And how come he is the only one with two distinct powers?

      Who says they’re distinct? Sylar does something with brains to acquire powers, so we know that the key to them is in there. The Haitian has the power to take people’s memory, and the ability to prevent the functioning of others’ powers could be a brain-related corollary.

    • is says:

      Re: The Hatian

      1. Anybody else wonder how the Haitian suddenly was back working for the Company?

      2. And how come he is the only one with two distinct powers?

      Couldn’t he simply make you forget about how to control your powers or make them work? Seems like that would be almost the same as taking them away… Still, you’re right in the sense that technically this new ability is not fully explained by the old ability.

      • benvking says:

        Re: The Hatian

        1. Anybody else wonder how the Haitian suddenly was back working for the Company?

        2. And how come he is the only one with two distinct powers?

        Couldn’t he simply make you forget about how to control your powers or make them work? Seems like that would be almost the same as taking them away… Still, you’re right in the sense that technically this new ability is not fully explained by the old ability.

        It’s more than that. Remember in the Time traveling ep last season when Hiro met Future Hiro. Future Hiro Couldn’t teleport TO a location where The Haitian would be. And his memory wiping powers ONLY work with touch.

        • is says:

          Re: The Hatian

          It’s more than that. Remember in the Time traveling ep last season when Hiro met Future Hiro. Future Hiro Couldn’t teleport TO a location where The Haitian would be. And his memory wiping powers ONLY work with touch.

          So he’s like an ability distortion field (with a radius?)
          that still wouldn’t explain how the abilities stay away when he’s not there.

          • Nickvotrobeck says:

            Re: The Hatian

            So he’s like an ability distortion field (with a radius?)
            that still wouldn’t explain how the abilities stay away when he’s not there.

            He’s got a selective control, Elle was using her abilities with him nearby and others have used their abilities around him when he wanted them to. For them to stay away he must have to take away their memory of how to activate them. In Peter’s case the drugs kept them away in the long term, not the Haitian.

            • valen1260 says:

              Re: The Hatian

              He’s got a selective control

              While this might explain why Peter hasn’t created a suppression feedback a la Parkman’s telepathy feedback (nullifying the Haitian’s nullification), it runs counter to the claim above that Hiro can’t teleport to the Haitian’s location. If it’s not a passive power, the Haitian would have to be expecting Hiro’s teleport at all times.

              • Nickvotrobeck says:

                Re: The Hatian

                He’s got a selective control

                While this might explain why Peter hasn’t created a suppression feedback a la Parkman’s telepathy feedback (nullifying the Haitian’s nullification), it runs counter to the claim above that Hiro can’t teleport to the Haitian’s location. If it’s not a passive power, the Haitian would have to be expecting Hiro’s teleport at all times.

                Or he can set up his suppression field for all powers and then selectively allow some to work.

                • benvking says:

                  Re: The Hatian

                  He’s got a selective control

                  While this might explain why Peter hasn’t created a suppression feedback a la Parkman’s telepathy feedback (nullifying the Haitian’s nullification), it runs counter to the claim above that Hiro can’t teleport to the Haitian’s location. If it’s not a passive power, the Haitian would have to be expecting Hiro’s teleport at all times.

                  Or he can set up his suppression field for all powers and then selectively allow some to work.

                  I think I just found an hole in the continuity, as far as his power suppression abilities go. But I don’t think they are tied to his memory wiping power. Because he has to touch the subject for it to work.

  3. pelogrande says:

    Elle
    I actually really liked Elle. At first it just seemed like Kristen Bell was hamming it up and having fun, but then there was the scene with Peter "giving in" for his escape plan.

    The way she reacted to that, you could tell that the story she told was true and that she was a deeply, deeply flawed person with lots of potential as a character.

  4. cabrubak says:

    Discovered Nathans other power
    To grow a thick beard in less then a month.

  5. tsunayoshi says:

    The story with D.L.
    I’m sorry, the way they showed him dying is BS. From the way it looked in the scene, he saw the guy walk up and pull a gun on him, which means he had time to phase and let the bullet fly through him (just like when Jessica tried to snipe him in season 1). That was poorly written.

    • valen1260 says:

      Re: The story with D.L.

      I’m sorry, the way they showed him dying is BS.

      I totally agree. It was a cop-out. Niki/Jessica knew the only way she could get D.L. with a bullet was to surprise him, and even that failed. To die by a random bar thug walking up to him, putting a gun to his chest, counting to two, and *then* pulling the trigger is possibly the worst idea yet on the show.

      Of course, I guess there’s always the possibility that the Haitian was involved (another cop-out) to get Niki to go to The Company, or we have another "Haitian".

  6. tsunayoshi says:

    Things that bother me this season
    Small list of things for discussion:

    1. Haitian went from Company employee, to anti-company (Hiding Claire and helping Noah), back to Company (helping Bob capture Peter), back to anti-company (hiding Peter and helping Noah again). I wish we could get an explanation of this, although I think he has his own agenda.

    2. Is the Company good or bad now? Adam seems to want to save the world in spite of what we’ve heard from Bob. Since we now know his blood can cure people, we need to know if it is him or Claire (if she can do the same) who will stop the plague.

    3. Bob is letting Niki go, even though she is currently infected with an un-curable mutation of the Chanti virus. How can Mohinder as a doctor allow that when he knows it could spread?

    4. Maya can drop dead. In only a short time she goes from regretting what she’s done to actively using her power to kill, and completely ignoring her twin brother’s advice. All this caused by listening to some guy (Silar) they found near dead on the side of the road.

    5. Why would Noah hide his family in the same neighborhood/city that he had "tagged" West in years ago? And then send Claire to the same school as West?

    I could go on and on, but I agree with some people, the writing is a little lacking this season.

    Show still rocks though.

    • TomSwiss says:

      Re: Things that bother me this season
      The Haitian is a double agent, a mole inside the Company. He may even agree with some of what the Company is doing.

      The Company is morally ambigous. So’s Mr. Bennet, now.

      I believe the scene of Niki leaving the facility is in the past, right? She wasn’t yet infected.

      Maya was being threatened by vigilantees, who were going to stop her from getting to the treatment she needs.

      Was West living in that neighborhood when Bennet tagged him? How many neighborhoods has Bennet tagged how many people in? Would he remember?

      • valen1260 says:

        Re: Things that bother me this season

        I believe the scene of Niki leaving the facility is in the past, right? She wasn’t yet infected.

        It was kind of confusing, as there was a "Today" and "Present Day".

        Was West living in that neighborhood when Bennet tagged him? How many neighborhoods has Bennet tagged how many people in? Would he remember?

        I doubt one insignificant, flying teenager is going to be fresh on Noah’s mind. He’s tagged so many, and the tagging was probably the last of his interaction with the specials that I can’t imagine he would remember.

      • tsunayoshi says:

        Re: Things that bother me this season

        Maya was being threatened by vigilantees, who were going to stop her from getting to the treatment she needs.

        Possibility, but I think it is because Silar is corrupting her. They have been threatened previously (the coyotes, Alejandro in jail, the patrol when they went through the drain pipe) and her power only activated because she lost control, and she was regretful and hated herself every time.

        I hope Alejandro sticks to his guns and lets Silar die next time it happens before he pulls her from the trance.

    • Fozzy_Bear says:

      Re: Things that bother me this season

      Small list of things for discussion:

      1. Haitian went from Company employee, …
      2. Is the Company good or bad now? …
      3. Bob is letting Niki go,…
      4. Maya can drop dead. …
      5. Why would Noah hide his family …
      Show still rocks though.

      1) IMHO, the Haitian is the only one in the whole plot that has always acted consistently. He is out for the common good. To that end he works for a company with the resources to make a change, and when that company stays from the path, he goes against the company. … OK… Thinking back, Hiro has also been consistently good too, (even Mica had robbed a few banks).

      2)The company, like all companies is run by imperfect people and is therefor imperfect. Many of the people who make up that company are mostly good; some of them have agendas that most consider pretty evil though. Consider this: Many people know that pigs have a very high intelligence. Now, they are a different species, and we grow them just to eat them, but what if an ET society came by and past right by us because we are so evil that we eat other intelligent species??? AND, how would that be different from another species (even one that developed from former humans) killing off all the Homo Sapiens for their own purposes? Maybe by using a bio-weapon…

      3) that was a flashback from before she was infected.

      4) Yup. I agree totally. The whole Maya thread sucks. Almost as bad as the fact that Syler and Peter are still alive.

      5)I have heard the the writer that was responsible for the Clair thread (in Season 1) has left the show. (and now works on Pushing Daises). The more I hear about both of those shows, the more likely that seems.

      • tsunayoshi says:

        Re: Things that bother me this season

        Small list of things for discussion:

        1. Haitian went from Company employee, …
        2. Is the Company good or bad now? …
        3. Bob is letting Niki go,…
        4. Maya can drop dead. …
        5. Why would Noah hide his family …
        Show still rocks though.

        3) that was a flashback from before she was infected.

        Ah, I thought they had returned to present at that point. Now that I think about it, I guess that was Bob watching her leave the hospital were D.L. died and before she showed up for treatment.

      • benvking says:

        Re: Things that bother me this season
        1) It’s inconstant because the last time the Company saw him he shot Bennet in the gut and absconded with his daughter. Why would you take him back?

    • benvking says:

      Re: Things that bother me this season
      Where did Peter get his phasing power from? IIRC the only time he met DL was the finale last season at the Battle with Sylar. Assuming he was close enough to absorb that power, DL never exhibited it. So how would Peter know to use it to escape.

      • Fozzy_Bear says:

        Re: Things that bother me this season

        Where did Peter get his phasing power from? IIRC the only time he met DL was the finale last season at the Battle with Sylar. Assuming he was close enough to absorb that power, DL never exhibited it. So how would Peter know to use it to escape.

        Adam had been coaching him for days. If Peter mentioned seeing Niki with her boyfriend, Adam could have said, you remember that man Peter? That man could walk through walls… That would be a good thing to try first since it could get us out of here without hurting anyone…

        • Nickvotrobeck says:

          Re: Things that bother me this season

          Adam had been coaching him for days. If Peter mentioned seeing Niki with her boyfriend, Adam could have said, you remember that man Peter? That man could walk through walls… That would be a good thing to try first since it could get us out of here without hurting anyone…

          What I want to know is, why did they phase back into Peter’s cell instead of directly into the hallway from Adam’s? Other than that it might have required another camera setup.

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