By Special Correspondent Arturo R. García
This is the end, my beautiful friends, the end.
– The Doors, “The End”
Keep the cameras on me.
– Lady Claire Hilton Be-Be-Benetrelli
The ratings make it increasingly likely that “Brave New World” was Heroes’ last stand. Though there’s still “hope” for a Dollhouse-like reprieve, pulling 13 million less viewers than Two And A Half Men doesn’t bode well for the show. But first, let’s catch up a bit. As they say on tv, Previously On Heroes:
* After getting mind-schtupped and finding, then losing, Charlie, Hiro survives brain tumor surgery thanks to his mom.
* After permanently winning control of his body, then going to Claire for answers, Sylar asks Parkman to purge him of his powers, but gets trapped inside his own mind.
* After burying his brother, Peter learns that his new girlfriend might be responsible for a massacre. Gaining further insight through his mother’s ability, he journeys to Parkman’s home to rescue Sylar – the only person who can save her – and ends up reconciling with him.
* After briefly joining the Carnival and reconciling with Gretchen, Claire discovers Samuel arranged for Lydia’s murder as part of a bigger agenda. She and Noah are then trapped underground in a trailer by Samuel.
What follows is an example of the series’ depressing consistency – “World” is long on blondes but desperately short on action. Backed up by Doyle and buoyed by an unwilling Emma, Samuel finally stops lollygagging and sets out to “announce” the metahuman presence by killing a gaggle of people in (sigh) New York City, including a suspiciously-curious local press corps. Perhaps the newsies saw Samuel’s “family” and thought the Knicks were having an open practice.
Unfortunately for him, he proves to be more Dr. Evil than Magneto, as his plan breaks down with ridiculous ease: Claire & Noah break out of his “50 foot” dirt-trap – seriously, how would anybody but Claire know what falling that far feels like? – thanks to Tracy & HRG’s new (and, of course, blonde) GF Lauren; nouveau Superfriends Sylar and Peter free Emma and subdue Doyle and Samuel; and said family ditches him, fleeing to safety thanks to Hiro and Ando.
Hiro is at the center of the episode’s other storyline, as he finally – and do we mean finally – learns to get over losing Charlie and stop mucking about the timestream trying to “fix things.” Not because his powers nearly led to his death, mind you, but because he learns that she did the human thing and moved on with her life. Even then, his initial reaction is to mewl, “My hero’s journey has come to an end” – because, you know, Hiro was always in it to get a date. It’s the lowest point in Hiro’s nearly series-long descent, a sad moment for anybody who wanted to see him grow into his heroic future self. Instead, he only appears in NYC because Bennet had the good sense to call for back-up. (Not to brag, but we figured it would get this bad almost a year ago.)
All of this, of course, serves as little more than a prelude to Claire outing herself as a meta-human to the press corps against her father’s wishes. You’d think that Claire-Bear would remember Nathan was once shot in the process of doing this, and that she was rounded up as part of Nathan’s federally-funded campaign against superhumans. You would also think Claire would remember she’s waffled between wanting to be in the public eye and wanting to be a “normal person” for most of the past four years. But apparently, you would be wrong.
Or perhaps, the creative team hopes you’ve also forgotten these things. Because as long as the NBC brass keeps publicly praising the series, there’s a chance it might return. Because, you know, there’s always room for more blondes.