If “Brave New World” and “Odessa” was the first glass of water we were given after five years wandering the desert, “Game Over” might as well be the first glass of lemonade after an unreasonably long summer.
Forget the first appearance of Masi Oka as Hiro Nakamura since the conclusion of the original series on Feb. 8, 2010.
Forget the reference to “stepping on butterflies” or Noah Bennet calling Hiro “old friend.”
For a moment, forget the first direct reference to Isaac Mendez and the “9th Wonders” comic book series.
What made “Game Over” feel like vintage Heroes was in the editing, the direction of Gideon Raffand and the writing of Nevin Densham, who scribed only his third episode of television in four years.
From the first shots of HRG interrogating Harris (prime) via pool and Carlos doing the same to Captain Dearing with his bare fists to HRG and Hiro walking into the Odessa Summit on June 13, we’re finally treated to the first riveting, attention grabbing hour of Heroes Reborn in four weeks.
The new (used) car small wore off after three episodes and that’s around the time the stakes of this potentially one-off season should have been established. However, the impending danger of a solar flare wasn’t made clear until “The Lion’s Den” and now the show can shift into a higher narrative gear.
What was really missing from the first five episodes were the seemingly random connections made between story lines as characters passed each other in the night or linked up for a story arc.
HRG/Quentin and Miko/Ren don’t count, they were both aimed for Renautas and it was inevitable their paths would cross. When they did, it made for the best 15 minutes of the show since HRG and Quentin went crawling through the remains of Primatech.
But Luke and Malina? Two characters with completely different objectives and paths winding up at the same marina felt almost natural. But when Malina pulled Tommy’s (Nathan?) photo out of the blood stained envelope, it felt downright blissful.
This triumvirate was not one I would have easily predicted a week ago, let alone three. But pairing the character once hell bent on killing any EVO in his path with the two characters the fate of the world is seemingly linked to now seems obvious.
After six episodes, the only aspect of Heroes Reborn that hasn’t felt natural or obvious narratively is Carlos. He’s still completely isolated from the rest of the series and more than likely will be sidelined until after the “June 13th” two-parter. I’d rather that be the case than him being shoehorned into either episode.
But I’m willing to forget about Carlos for the next two weeks as Hiro and HRG try to put right what once went wrong. It might lead to a horrible time travel induced headache, but I want to believe HRG was speaking for Tim Kring when he told Hiro he had a plan.
- If the “June 13th” episode description didn’t tell us “Miko’s” father was in the episode, this week would have felt like a natural ending to her storyline. But it would have felt awkward not have met Hachiro Otomo at least once this season.
- Unless time travel changes it, I really hate that we’ve been robbed of the terrific HRG/Quentin dynamic. It was by far the perfect pairing through the first six episodes. But the “buddy” reference was a touching note to end it on if it really is the end.
- I’m probably wrong, but aside from Charlie and Ando in the original series, I think HRG is the first character to time travel with Hiro.
- The first “Leroy Jenkins” joke was amusing, the second one was adorable. That deserves a hat tip.
- Someone please tell the most significant interaction Hiro and Noah had in the original series. I can’t think of anything that would warrant Noah calling Hiro “old friend.”
Predictions sure to go wrong
- In the promo for “June 13th,” I can’t decide if Hiro saying “This time you save the cheerleader, I’ll stop the bomb” is a reference to the first season of the original series or how things originally played out in Odessa a year ago.
- Malina and Tommy (Nathan?) are twins. If not, I’ll donate $10 to the charity of choice of the first person that calls me out on it on Twitter.