Finally! The Heroes moment we have all been waiting for! Save the cheerleader. Save the world. I still think it sounds kind of dumb, and really, we all are going to die anyway. In the grand scheme of things, how bad would it be if Sylar was running the world? We are sort of overdue for a mass extinction on a grand scale anyway, so why should it bother me if it comes by way of meteor, nuclear holocaust, ice age, or Sylar? In fact, what if the planet is taken over by billions of alien gerbils from Neptune? We’d be kicking ourselves for not letting Sylar do his things. However, besides being Tom Cruise’s apocalyptic fantasy, there is nothing about that sort of close encounter that should prevent us from enjoying the greatest show on television.First, I want to say good job to the folks at NBC-Universal. I thought that I would have the will power to bitch about the narrator until they got rid of him, but clearly my laziness is a much stronger force than I could have ever imagined, because I’ve decided it’s not worth the effort to conjure up enough hate for this little rants to be worth it. So congrats! You won! But you still should have listened to me (and, well, everybody else in the country) about Joey. Oh, and if you don’t like gross screencaps, there is one later in the recap, so be warned!
Mohinder’s words to live by for this week were short, telling us, “We are, if anything, creatures of habit. Drawn to the safety and comfort of the familiar. But what happens when the familiar becomes unsafe? When the fear we have been desperately trying to avoid finds us where we live?” Uhh, I don’t know. What happens when you ask several rhetorical questions at the beginning of a television show? Or a recap?
We start the episode out in Odessa, Texas. It is the night of the homecoming game, and you know what happens on the night of the homecoming game? They crown the homecoming queen! Although things like homecoming queen and prom king and queen seem like antiquated vestiges from the Truman administration, there are places where it still holds meaning. And although the stereotype is that the bitch girl who sleeps with half the school always wins, the two girls who won in my senior year in high school were very sweet. I mention this partly because my ten-year high school reunion is coming up and I want to make sure I put lots of complimentary phrases about all my classmates so they won’t have me after visiting my blog, but it also happens to be true. Really!
It seems that the students at Claire’s high school have bucked the popularity trend because the person we thought would win, Jackie, was not the one chosen by her classmates. The Homecoming Queen was none other than Claire Bennett! Yay! Claire is going through some tough times. Her body is changing, and her brother knows her big secret (will anything ever come of THAT?), but there are bigger issues at her school.
Uh oh. Jailbait!
Claire used to identify with the cheerleaders, and I am not sure if I am slipping and didn’t notice this before, but have you noticed that the cheerleader uniforms are a little, uh, low cut? The skirts look pretty normal, but the tops are cut low enough that actual cleavage is poking through. I mean, we haven’t quite made it to Debbie Does Dallas levels of skin, but I don’t remember too many squads dressing up like this. And take a look at this picture on the official NBC website. The sweater is cut much higher! I’m not complaining, because who cares if a cheerleader is showing off cleavage and perhaps a proud nipple? I’m just saying that Hayden Panettiere is not yet 18, and if they are going to make me force me to ogle her every week, at least let her be legal!
Where were we? Oh yes, homecoming queen. The cheerleaders have shunned Claire because she did incapacitate Brody, the star quarterback, and even though there were probably a number of people chomping at the bit, they might have waited until after the big game. You can imagine Jackie’s surprise when Claire won, but she wasn’t even as surprised as Claire, whose name was being chanted by all of the generic outcasts that the school has.
I think we should give Claire a little time to soak in her win, especially since she will be, you know, decapitated and/or eviscerated later that evening at some point. Therefore, let’s focus on the people that are trying to help her, starting with Peter. Peter has decided that his destiny is to save the cheerleader and save the world, but he has no clue where this cheerleader is, and if Claire’s dad was correct and she was going to be killed that evening, he was going to have to hop on a plane pretty quick, don’t you think?
Peter knew the key to everything would be the Isaac Mendez painting that Simone sold to Lindermann, but his brother Nathan lied about the whole thing. And Nathan didn’t just lie about the painting, but he destroyed as well, right after Simone told him there were no other copies of it. Now why would Nathan want to stop Peter from fulfilling his destiny? He doesn’t even believe any of this Hero stuff, even though he himself can fly. If the painting means nothing and all of this is a fairy tale? Why destroy it? What was on the painting? I guess we’ll never know….or will we?
Simone said there was no copies, but when Peter visits her later that day, she tells him that there was a copy of that painting, and shows him the photograph. And now we know why Nathan didn’t want his brother to see the painting. It showed his brother dead outside of Union Wells High School Homecoming (the same banner Claire made last week?) at 8:12 PM. Simone was really shaken up about everything that happened, because she knows how much Peter believes in what he has to do, even if it means it death. And she herself is starting to believe some of what he has to say. She knows that by showing him this picture, she might have sent him to his death, and is crying like she wish she could take it all back.
But don’t cry too much for Simone, because she got over it pretty quickly. As soon as she told him about Union Wells, she then said that she looked up all of the information on the Internet and found out that Union Wells High School is in Odessa, TX, and that homecoming is tonight, so hurry up an catch your plane! Seriously, did that just happen? We already think the timeline is kind of crazy, so there is no need to pretend Simone’s Google search would have made the difference of Peter making it or not.
Peter calls Hiro, but since Hiro forgot to take his phone with him when he went back in time, Ando answers. I never really thought too much about the way that Hiro and Ando go from great English to not being able to say much more than “Waffles!”, but what the hell is going on? Hopefully, Hiro took English classes when he went back in time so we don’t have to deal with this much longer. Anyway, Ando fills Peter in on their location, which like I said last week was very close to Odessa, and Peter says that they need to get to Union Wells because they have to save the cheerleader THAT NIGHT. Ando wants to wait for Hiro, and they decided to meet up a little later.
Now things are starting to come into place. We have Peter flying to Texas and Ando in position, perhaps with Hiro if he ever decides to come back, but what about the others? There are plenty of heroes out there, and we have no clue how they are going to fit into this thing. Nathan? We don’t see him again the whole episode. Matt Parkman and the getting-closer-to-shaving-her-legs-each-week Audrey Hanson? No shows. But we do get an update on Niki, DL, and Micah.
Is it wrong that this turns me on? I think it’s mostly Ali Larter that does it, but that gun is pretty cool as well.
DL and Micah are on the run, but as we know, Micah gave his mother a little clue on their location. Actually, I shouldn’t say his mother because Niki is no longer Niki, but Jessica right now. While DL is trying to convince Micah why they can’t go back for his mother, Jessica is buying a sniper rifle. She’s not letting DL slip through her fingers, or let his fingers slip through her (in a choking way, you perverts), so she buys a gun that can take him out at approximately 400 yards. And she’s damn good with it. As for DL? He’s still getting chased by the police and in between the time he runs into a restaurant to take a leak and comes back, Micah is gone! Not to worry though, I’m sure Jessica will soon come by and put him out of his misery.
And while we are getting little side stories out of the way, why not take a little trip to Chennai to see if Mohinder will ever get his head out of his ass? I have another item to add to my list of reasons why I think Mohinder is a dumb ass: his most trusted colleague is a douche bag that wears the most ridiculous looking bow tie ever. Now, I am not going to disparage everybody that chooses to wear a bow tie, but most of the people who do wear bow ties do so because people think that their quirky little habit will be enough to get people to take their minds off the facts that the person wearing said bow tie is, in fact, a huge douche. There are many good people who wear bow ties and we are too afraid to let them know. Unless you are wearing a tuxedo or practicing your routine for the Chippendale’s, there is no reason for dudes to wear bow ties. Let’s put an end to this before it gets out of control, OK?
Look! Ron Jeremy got a tan and a PhD!
Luckily for us, Mohinder appears to be getting a little smarter. He goes looking for the boy in his dream even though the kid lives in a bad neighborhood and the guy with the bow tie is afraid that they’ll get mugged. Hmm, I have an idea! They should try not to draw attention to themselves like, I don’t know, TAKING OFF THE FUCKING BOW TIE? Mohinder finally finds the kid, who is playing soccer and we learn that people come to him when they have questions that need answers. This was all very interesting, but I was really distracted at the voice dubbing in this part of the show, which was somewhere between 1980s porno and 1970s kung fu movie on the scale of bad dub jobs. Mohinder says that he wants to know which path he should take in the road of life. The boy tells him that he already has the answer that he seeks and goes back to playing soccer. Even though the boy is perhaps five feet away from him, Mohinder starts yelling like the kid is floating away on the Seabourn Legend and he knows Jack Travers won’t show up to save him.
But who am I kidding? This is “Save the cheerleader. Save the world.” night. BTW, I think I would have liked the saying much more if they didn’t do it with that stupid whisper each time. Last week, HRG told Eden that he wanted her to make Isaac take drugs so Isaac could finish his painting. Isaac took the drugs, did his painting, but the painting wasn’t quite as accurate as HRG would have liked. HRG tried to get Eden to convince Isaac to take more drugs, but she decided that she was going to stand up and refuse.
I think know would be a good time to relate an observation reader DJ. Namely, did you see the ass on Eden? I am not really going to call her bootyliscious just yet, but most skinny pixie chicks do not walk around with a bubble like that. Granted, she is still a size two and her hips aren’t even going to take up a yard on the tape measure, but let’s give a hand to reader DJ for bringing this to our attention. And let’s all thank his wife for being the one to notice it in the first place.
Having Eden around can be a real asset
Back to the story, HRG shows Eden some pictures of Sylar’s victims in an effort to make sure that Eden knows exactly what is at stake. The painting might not help them, but he knows that Sylar will be at the homecoming game, and he tells Eden to go there to try and neutralize him. Meanwhile, he will be keeping Claire safe at home.
Mr. Bennett’s plan was to ground Claire for the evening. Now if Sylar really knew that much about Claire, wouldn’t he just find the Bennett house and kill them all? Like I said last week, get the hell out of the state! Why take a chance? When Claire hears that she is grounded, she can’t believe it. She did win homecoming queen, and to top it off, she even had the guts to punch Jackie in the face when she started making fun of Zach for being gay. And it’s not only that. Claire is still a cheerleader and doesn’t want to miss the game. Claire’s father answered “You’ll survive” and it’s too bad that he has to take all of this burden protecting his daughter onto his shoulders because if I had a great line like that, I would have loved to turn around to my buddy and get a big high five for being so witty.
HRG wants his daughter to be a good girl and stay home, but considering there is a dangerous serial killer out to get her, he didn’t bother with much security. Zach calls Claire on her sidekick (Juicy Couture model, natch) to let him know that he is at her window. He climbed onto her roof using a ladder and wanted to help Claire sneak out and get away. I know that Claire is Zach’s fag hag and all, and nothing can make a gay man happier than seeing his friend make it to her homecoming and be crowned queen, but I thought it was all a little out of the ordinary. Suddenly, Zach was masculine and taking charge, saying things like “You deserve this” and Claire agreed and even asked him to be her date.
Zach continues with his speech saying that he likes the way Claire is, but wishes that she liked the way she is. The moral of the story? Embrace your inner freak! And the only thing you can regret is denying who you really are. Do you people get what I am saying here? I thought it was very cute of Zach, but I am a conspiracy theorist. I was thinking to myself. Hmm, is Zach secretly working with Sylar? Why is he going to all this trouble? I decided it was because he was just being a good guy, but really, it did sort of bother me. Sylar found out about Charlie after she blabbed about her abilities. Did Sylar find out about Claire from Zach? I would think that it would take a lot for Zach to betray Claire, especially after she stood up to Jackie for him, but dangle a few Clay Aiken tickets in front of him, and you can’t be sure what a person might do.
Here is what I was thinking. How the hell does Peter get on a plane to Midland, TX and get there in time to even attempt to save the cheerleader? Those stupid writers think I wouldn’t notice, so I decided to show them and look up some flights on Travelocity. Oy. Looks like there is a Continental Airlines flight that leaves JFK at 1:20PM and touches down in Midland at 7:36. That gives Peter 36 minutes to find the cheerleader and die. As long as he wasn’t an idiot and only had a carry, he could make it. He even stopped by the diner to see if Hiro had made it.
As cheesy as this next moment was, it is one of the reasons why I love Heroes. Ando is not a hero (or a Hiro!), and although I don’t think he is necessarily jealous of his friend, he does understand that if something happens, he might not be able to do it himself. When Peter says that they need to get going, Ando assumes that Peter has powers, but Peter says, “By myself, I’m not really anything”. Ando knows all too well and says, “Without Hiro, I am not really anything”. We get caught up with all the heroes, sometimes we forget that regular people or people with just a little power can help as well. I make fun of some of the heroes’ powers, but in reality, everybody has a chance to do their part.
I have come to save the cheerleader, but I’m going to stay to get a hair cut.
Peter knows this and leaves to find the cheerleader, but Ando is frozen, too scared to do anything without his friend, not that I can blame him. Put in his position, I would simply let the heroes do their job and try and finish Final Fantasy XII before the world ends, or at least the electricity goes out and my Playstation no longer works. As for Ando, I do hope he finds his place and realizes he can do some good in the world as well.
By this time, HRG has found out that Claire is gone. Mr. Bennett asks Mrs. Bennett (who is surprisingly lucid this evening) what happened to Claire. The Missus says that Claire and Zach scooted off. HRG says that she has no idea what she has done, and when she says that Claire is going to hate him for it, he says, “I hope so”. Not sure what that is supposed to mean, but now it is time to get to the most exciting part of the episode.
Ha! Did I get you? Sorry about that bait and switch, but the next part of the Mohinder story line is actually interesting. During the middle of another dream, Mohinder sees visions of his father again. The first one is his father with sucky bow tie Indian Ron Jeremy guy. The bow tie guy warns Mohinder’s father his tenure will be stripped, yada, yada. The second part was with Mohinder. He had just finished reading a first draft of his father’s book. He was full of enthusiasm and ready to help, even suggesting that they use the human genome project to help their search. Poppa Suresh first scolded his son for reading his work, and then again for wanting to help, giving him some Darwin line about a scientist needing a heart of stone.
Mohinder wakes up, and he is at his father’s desk. The program asking if he wants to quit is still up, and he says no. A password box comes up, and after a little while, Mohinder figures out that the password is Shanti, his dead sister that his father thought was so special. What did that program contain? A list of the known heroes and their locations. Among them, names like Matt Parkman, Hiro Nakamura, and Niki Sanders. From now on, I think we shall call it Mohinder’s list. Why? Because hopefully there is a joke in there somewhere down the road.
Pretty exciting, right? Lots of possibilities and all that, but the real deal is in Texas. Claire is walking to the locker room and bumps into Peter. Finally! He can save her and all will be safe. But you know what? That didn’t happen. Although I thought Isaac’s paintings were detailed, it looks like some people can’t tell one cheerleader from another. Nathan is looking at a picture of Jackie. All he knows about the cheerleader he has to save is that she is special, and there has to be something special about a girl who ran into a fire to save somebody.
Now we all know that Claire is the one who did it, but she is really enjoying the anonymity, so she doesn’t push it. Meanwhile, Peter steps outside, looks up, and sees the sign. There are 12 minutes to go. Will he really die? Of course not! How do I know? Well, Peter soaks up abilities, and he was just standing next to Claire. He might have just enough regeneration ability to save himself from any gruesome fate.
Unfortunately, Peter is nowhere near Claire. She was in the locker room with Jackie, who just called her a menace. Jackie is upset that Claire changed because they used to be BFF, but the argument doesn’t go on for very long. Suddenly, the lights go out, and you know that Sylar is in the building. The girls try to get away, but it is too late. Sylar is there to kill a cheerleader, and that is exactly what he does.
But the girl who dies is NOT CLAIRE. That’s right. Remember in the diner how Sylar was listening to Charlie talk about her new abilities? It looks like Sylar has been looking at a lot of press clippings, and since Jackie took all the credit; she was the one Sylar thought he was after. He picks up Jackie, throws Claire across the room, and then we finally get to see how he does what he does. He points his finger at Jackie’s head and waves it across. During this time, it starts to open her skull open. Hmm. Telekinesis and fingertip skull saw. Interesting combination, but I guess it works.
Sylar (we finally got to see his face) threw Claire across the room so hard she was broken in several places, but then she started to pull herself back together. With her last breath, Jackie says “run” and Claire gets the hell out of Dodge, but Sylar, realizing his mistake, is on her heels. In the hallway, Claire bumps into Peter. Peter sort of realizes he might have the wrong person and tells Claire to run while he tries to take on Sylar.
Claire makes a break for it. Peter mumbles something about Sylar not liking the dark or other people, so Claire runs for the football stadium. Meanwhile, Sylar sees Peter and they fall part of the building to the ground below. Peter has lost a lot of blood, but is he dead? Of course not! Sylar runs off, and for some reason, Claire came back. She asks Peter his name, and by this time, he is starting to heal himself. He is groggy and asks if he saved the world, but Claire says, “I am just a cheerleader.”
Claire runs off to find her father, because she thinks Peter needs help. HRG had heard her screams, but when he ran to investigate, only found Jackie’s body. I don’t care if HRG turns out to be bad. He loves his daughter and you could see how happy he was she was alive. HRG tells her that they have to leave Peter alone, and Claire finally says to her dad “I have something to tell you.” Hmm, Will HRG tell his daughter how much he knows? Should be interesting when we find out.
Things are going so fast at this point, I barely know where to begin. Oh yes, how about SYLAR? He ran off, unaffected by the fall, and bumped into Eden. Eden is annoying, but I couldn’t see how the hell she was going to be able to stop Sylar. He was such a bad ass after all, right? Well, Eden did stop him in his tracks with the power of suggestion, and our friend The Eraser was right there to catch him.
At this point, I am thinking “If Eden could stop Sylar, why didn’t they just have Eden hang out with Claire ALL THE TIME? But things were really moving too fast. The cops picked up Peter. Lots of blood plus no injuries to your own body can make people suspicious. I am pretty sure anything that he only has his blood on him, and maybe a little bit of Claire’s, but none of Jackie’s. That doesn’t mean the cops will hold him, but remember. Peter touched Sylar as well. That means that he has whatever telekinetic and other abilities Sylar had. Peter might be able to get out on his own.
Finally, there is DL and Micah. DL found Micah, who had run away to try and get back to his mom. Two things. For such a precocious kid, it’s almost refreshing to see him with such a cutesy backpack. And second, for such a smart kid, he really doesn’t understand his chances of getting back home hitchhiking in the desert.
Micah sort of convinced his father that they should help Niki, saying that something happened to her when his father left, and know she can’t help herself. Micah knows that this other person is named Jessica, and says his mom doesn’t even know about her. We then see the two of them getting back to their car. DL is somebody’s crosshairs. Pan back…it’s Jessica. Ready. Aim. FIRE! She takes her shot, and we know she was pretty accurate, but did she actually kill DL? Or did she just maim him so she can finish the job with her hands?
Overall, I thought this was a great episode. The last line of my notes for the episode read, “That was some good fucking shit!” Mohinder talked to his mother and said he was going to go back to New York and try and find all of the people like his father. I do wonder what will happen if he runs into Sylar. They took extra care to show Sylar’s broken watch, and if you remember from last week, the person who killed Mohinder’s dad broke his watch.
The more interesting part, however, is next week. We saw at the end of this week’s episode what happened when Hiro went back in time. Charlie was waiting on him, and it was her birthday, six months before Sylar killed her. But they aren’t the only ones who are going to get a back-story. Next week we get to see what happened six months ago with a lot of the heroes. Maybe we’ll even get to see Lindermann! I think it is gimmicky and I don’t like gimmicks, but it just works in this case, and I am not going to complain.
What did you think of the episode? Will Ando ever find Hiro again? How will Peter get out of jail? What will HRG do with Sylar? Is DL really dead?