Thoughts on Heroes Volume 3: Villains

So, volume 3 of Heroes, “Villains,” is done. I liked the start of the season, but by the end it had gotten to the point where I was alternately ready to jump for joy and throw things at the screen in the space of the same episode.

I love the parts with Hiro, Ando, Daphne and Matt (except when Matt’s overdoing the “I saw you in the future and we’re in love!” bit). If they could make that into a show, I’d have no complaints. But the rest has slowly gotten bogged down in a mix of technobabble, melodrama, and an endless face-heel revolving door. “I’m evil!” “No, you’re good, I’m the one who’s evil!” “Wait, I thought it was my turn!”

Some specific comments, with spoilers, after the cut:

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SPOILERS!

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The woobification of Sylar. I realize they felt they had to do something to keep him around for the fan base, and they couldn’t keep him as the big bad after volume 1 finished, so he spent volume 2 powerless and volume 3 trying to figure out whether he was good or evil. And had an epiphany while he was powerless. You know, the way he was all last season? But that’s okay, it’s still not really his fault. He has The Hunger, you see, and really it’s all Bennet’s fault. Everything’s HRG’s fault! And Elle’s. Not poor little Gabriel’s fault, no! 🙄

Someone please tell me that either Claire or Noah — or heck, even Angela — stuffed garlic in his mouth and cut off his head before they left. Which reminds me, I have a hard time getting worked up over a pyrokinetic being trapped in a burning building. Especially one who has a history of escaping from a fire that “no one could possibly survive.” I expect she’ll show up somewhere in volume 4 to be used as leverage against Claire, and everyone will be so shocked to see her alive…except the audience.

While we’re at it, have we ever seen any indication that Meredith’s flame powers were involuntary, as in they would manifest while she was, say, unconscious? Noah could have asked her to aim her hands at the wall, then knocked her out with the butt of his gun, and they could have had plenty of oxygen while her system metabolized the adrenaline. And later, they could have gotten her out of the building without burning it down. With Peter, Mohinder, Nathan, or Matt, you kind of expect them to be carrying the idiot ball at times like this, but Bennet’s always been shown to be one of the few characters on the show with some consistent brains.

By the time Hiro was trying to steal the formula in the past, I was actually hoping that they were going to prevent the whole season from having happened, and normally I hate when stories do that.

Unfortunately it looks like volume 4, “Fugitives,” is going to be the kind of super-hero story that always annoys me, whether it’s well-told or not: the one in which the general populace turns against the heroes and either rounds them up or runs them out of town. (I guess there’s a reason I was never much of an X-Men fan.)

*sigh*

Holding out for Volume 5. Or the adventures of Hiro, Daphne, Ando and Matt in the Cretaceous.

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