heroes “volume 2” review: terrible

NOTE: this is mostly spoiler-free, but if you want a really “clean” Heroes experience, just don’t read it.

Last year, the marketing prior to the start of the show Heroes had me juiced up for it. I was ready, and when it hit, I took the chewy worm and swallowed it wholeheartedly. In fact, episodes 1-21 were all pretty strong. I think they had a few too many characters which left too many episodes dealing with minor plot movement, but for the most part, I liked. I liked so much I wrote a “Heroes Drinking Game” post.

Somewhere mid-season the marketing started getting a bit crazy. Virtually every commercial contained a spoiler, and they even did mid-episode commercials for the show once. Lame, but I guess I chalked it off as enthusiastic marketing folks trying to get the viewership as wide as possible. My guess is production costs run high, so I understood the need to get big advertisers on board. Fine, no worries.

Then the season finale hit, and it was junk. Loyal viewers, aka the fans, were screwed with a mediocre non-resolution to a huge buildup. No big “HURRAY” moment anywhere. No character making any moves that really made you excited. Just a boring little superhero fight and an utterly weak resolution to the season. And the last 2 minutes of the show, the sneak preview to this season, were a clear sign that problems were afoot.

Last night they aired the end of what they call “volume 2” (probably wrapped up due to the writers strike. go writers!). Of the 11 episodes, I’d say 1 was Good, with 5 Average, and 5 Bad. The Good one was the “last 4 months” episode (don’t remember the real name of it), as they did a really good job tying the plots together. All the rest blended together into a steaming pile of volume 2.  Some specific gripes:

  • Virtually every character that we are supposed to like spends most of the season either making stupid decisions or acting inconsistent with why we like them.  Matt’s supposed to be the good/pure guy – that’s over.  Mohinder’s supposed to be, well, smart, and he gets suckered in so pathetically obviously.
  • All the “bad guys” are ridiculously good at manipulating everyone around them.  I don’t mind them being manipulative, and I don’t mind them pulling the wool over peoples’ eyes from time to time, but this was ridiculous.
  • NBC killed any chance of excitement or suspense about “big” things.  We all knew Sylar would return, but did they have to show it in a commercial?  It seems like the once-clever hype machine has turned into a desperate pathetic attempt to constantly make the show seem more exciting than it is.
  • TOO MANY CHARACTERS.  Seriously, just when one plotline gets interesting, it disappears for three weeks while they deal with stupid things like Maya or Jessica – both of whom were terrible plot vehicles.
  • Clearly UNcomplicated villains.  The best bad guys have goals beyond “do evil”.  They are conflicted about something. For about 15 seconds of one episode it seemed like there really was a Sylar/Gabriel debate going on, but then it vanished.
  • Boring plotlines were drawn out forever (tip: Jessica is boring, as are Micah, Nathan, Matt, Maya, Ando.  Whereas HRG is interesting, as are the Haitian, Peter, Hiro, Sylar), and interesting ones were killed off in 1-2 episodes.  Matt’s father was supposed to be this season’s Big Villain, and instead lasted how long?  Come on.
  • Lots of the dumb James Bond-like moments, straight out of Austin Powers: when you have the guy you want to kill in your sights, and your intent is to kill, then you just SHOOT, you don’t TALK.  Stupid stupid stupid.
  • Unnecessarily rash decision-making.  There’s a moment when Hiro and Peter are talking, and without too many details, let’s just say they have the moment to themselves.  They can talk as long as they want to come to a decision/consensus, and nothing will rush them along.  What do they do?  Rush into a silly fight. STUPID!

I could go on for a while, but I’ve invested enough energy as it is. Tim, the rest of the writing staff, please, take your time and sit down and write out a storyline that’s really clever.  Advance it along at a good pace, you don’t need to bore us with teenage angst melodrama, we have tons of other shows for that.  Watch X-Men 2 a couple more times.  We all want the show to be great, so you have everyone on your side.  Now please, make it great again!

One Response to “heroes “volume 2” review: terrible”

  1. Ron Says:

    Agreed. Stopped watching 4 weeks ago. Yawn.

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