Topic: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

Old thread: http://sliders.tv/bboard-archive/viewtopic.php?id=8

Okay. So HEROES is returning. With a bunch of new characters and a bunch of old ones.

On one level, I think this could  be an effective return to Season 1's original intent: extraordinary situations, ordinary people discovering they have superpowers for the first time. A combination of characters who still have places to go or something to offer after the long hiatus (Parkman, Hiro, Noah Bennett, Angela Petrelli, Mohinder, Micah) and plenty of new characters to take center stage.

On another level... it's run by Tim Kring and after TOUCH, I've concluded that Kring is a great producer and a terrible writer. A Tim Kring show has beautiful locations, excellent directors, stunning music, star-studded casts and scripts that punch above the writer's weight. Kring has all these beautiful themes of interconnected fates and intertwined lives, but he hasn't the plotting or dialogue to make them anything other than nonsensical set-pieces. Characters behave nonsensically to further or stall the plot. Stories get written into corners and then absurd contrivances excuse Kring from consequences. Without Bryan Fuller on staff, Kring is clueless. So I can only hope that on HEROES REBORN, he's found some good talent and taken a step back.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

Agreed. The cast is solid, but I'm not sure about including some of the characters who have already been messed up.

The trick to writing deep stories is to not try to write a deep story. Write a story and let it go where it will. Sometimes they will be deep and sometimes they won't. But if your goal is to be deep and meaningful, odds are pretty good that you will come across as shallow and full of yourself.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

I sometimes wonder if the problem in the HEROES writers room was the lack of leadership. The constant changing and altering of people's powers. The inability to give Sylar a consistent character arc that wasn't abandoned for something else entirely. The inability to write Eve as the same character. The inexplicable declaration that the heroes and villains' powers came from the eclipse when they'd plainly established that the powers were from genetic factors unrelated to the sun. This strikes me as many different voices with contrary wishes and no one leading them towards a common goal.

Which makes me think that Tim Kring should hire someone to be the story editor and focus on the more practical aspects of production.

I hear Tracy Torme is available.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BHClJhC8Wfs

Trailer for HEROES REBORN. God help me, seeing a certain someone finally achieve his destiny -- I actually got excited.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

http://www.blastr.com/2015-6-25/first-t … -be-heroes

A synopsis of what HEROES REBORN will cover. I have to say, the marketing is making all the right statements. Ordinary people. Crazy situations. The focus on new characters is very wise. The idea that Noah, Angela, Matt, Mohinder, René, Micah, and Hiro will be supporting characters in the new characters' stories sounds effective and fitting. Maybe Peter, Sylar, Claire, Tracy and others are doing other things in this world and the focus is on a different set of people -- which is what Seasons 2 - 4 of HEROES should have done anyway.

SPOILER





















One of the things that drove me crazy about HEROES: glimpses of the future in Season 1 revealed that Hiro, in half a decade's time, would become a capable, skillful superhero. But Seasons 2 - 3 muddled his character so much that by Season 4, Hiro was still the clumsy incompetent he'd been in Season 1. It was something of a relief to see Hiro in this trailer as the future Hiro who appeared in Season 1, suggesting the hiatus has been good for Tim Kring to think things through properly.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

Heroes was always afraid to make any forward progress.  They never wanted anything from season one to really grow.  So none of their characters did.  Even the character that made the most progress (Sylar), just floated around the same area - creepy villain.  What made me the most angry was when he power-raped Claire and then the show still wanted us to think he was the good guy.

When he was WAY beyond redemption....

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Agreed. Which makes what was in the trailer so intriguing -- because somebody actually grew up, if that visual is anything to go on.

Unless it's a fake out?

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

It could be a tease.  Hiro growing up was teased a bunch and then never played upon because the writers didn't want to lose goofy/Japanese Masi Oka for cool/badass Masi Oka.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

Hmm. It could be a tease. I was watching "Collision," where Future Hiro first appeared -- the footage of the older Hiro in the REBORN trailer actually looks like it was lifted from that episode.

Or they refilmed it for some reason.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?t=183&v=4FLHB2zB_cA

New trailer.

Well, it's not a fake out!

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

http://www.comicbookresources.com/artic … g-and-cast

A lot of spoilers in this entry. Some news that will be saddening for some and a relief for others?

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

I will be watching, but I'm not entirely sold on the revival yet. The idea of people with special powers being hunted is very much played out these days. I don't know that the series needed to be revived just to tell that story again. It just feels lazy now, for writers to assume that this is what would happen in that situation, and then just tell the same story. I hope there is more to it. A good reason to bring back this show, rather than something like Chuck, which would actually be more exciting to see.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

SPOILERS


















I have some issue with people with powers being hunted. This storyline was done in the very strong Volume 4 ("Fugitives"). Well. I thought it was strong. The plotting wasn't any more sensible than Volume 3, I'll admit. But Bryan Fuller was back. Fuller refocused the plot developments on characterization. The individual episodes were very focused on the characters' internal conflicts and relationships even as they moved through the plot points. Volume 5, sadly, lost this focus and became all about the plot points with characterization awkwardly grafted on top (resulting in characters talking about seeking redemption rather than pursuing it).

I think HEROES REBORN has an interesting new take in that this isn't a shadow war. The evolved humans, Evos, have been exposed to the public as of the Season 4 finale and are experiencing persecution and prejudice. This is a new way of merging the extraordinary with the mundane and hopefully, the writers can explore this new world for HEROES.

I'm also intrigued by certain decisions: Hayden Panettiere was never approached to reprise Claire Bennet. The character has been killed offscreen. It's kind of abrupt in that she was the last thing ever onscreen for HEROES and then the next installment will indicate that she's dead. I think we've seen too many HEROES episodes where a character got a death scene and then it was undone. (Peter, Nathan, Noah, Claire, Sylar.) But given the unavailability of the actress, this death seems certain. Leads dying offscreen is never ideal. But the truth is that Claire was pretty played out as a character despite Fuller's best efforts.

It could be argued that Tim Kring was *never* able to do the show he wanted after the Season 1 finale. Now he has that opportunity. TOUCH did not reflect well on his talents, but I'm cautiously optimistic that he'll do something memorable and moving this time.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

So, downloaded the HEROES REBORN app and it's kind of crappy. The 'files' on each character are, instead, a series of clips from Seasons 1- 4. It's acceptable but rather artless and unengaging. Wikia does a better job. There are webisodes, but they're awkwardly played off YouTube (with ads before the actual video plays). The first webisode of DARK MATTERS, however, is intriguing. It's shot like a vlog and features a new character discovering her power. It really captures the wonder and joy of Season 1 and the down-to-earth sense of ordinary people experiencing the extraordinary. You don't need the app to watch it, however.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HV-dcDqmzkc

Skip the app, check out the web series.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

I didn't really follow HEROES, but between that and the X-FILES revival, I'm very curious to see how well they'll actually work. If these do well, then maybe Universal (which also owns HEROES) will give SLIDERS another shot. Heck, maybe the revival would even air on Fox, which is bringing X-FILES back.

Notable between all three series is that they were loved by fans at first, then eventually went off the rails. If these returning shows are not only successful but actually good, that could be the most positive signs toward the possibility of a revival yet. If they're neither of these things, SLIDERS will likely stay gone.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

Well, it premiered and I watched it.

I still don't think the show needed to come back. It's the same old story. The same lack of continuity (Noah apparently forgets that he has a son). The villain that Zachary Levi is playing comes across as a silly cartoon villain rather than a real menace (maybe if they didn't have him trapped in a kid's bedroom for two episodes...). The video game storyline was so stupid.
There are some good actors here. There might even be room for a good story. But rehashing the persecution storyline over and over and over again does not convince me that this series needed to come back from the dead.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

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I really enjoyed it! I thought it would be *very* awkward for what's essentially Season 5 to open when Peter and Claire, central to the last time we saw the show, are nowhere to be seen. But Kring handled it deftly with the EVO/human gathering four years after the last series finale. It was an effective way of building on Volume 5 before starting Volume 6. All the characters were intriguing, the pacing and dialogue were effective and stirring and I enjoyed Kring's mystical take on the superhero genre. As with Volumes 1 - 4, everything was beautifully produced, staged, filmed, edited and scored and the actors all do a great job of suggesting extensive character beyond their limited scenes.

In the SLIDERS rewatch thread, I raged a bit about Season 3 of SLIDERS being unprofessional. HEROES REBORN is professional. That said, I don't think it really recaptures Season 1's theme of ordinary people in extraordinary situations. This is more HEROES Volume 4 (yes, the one where the superhumans were *also* being hunted down). It's gripping, compelling, exciting, and at times just plain weird, but it depends on your existing investment in the HEROES universe. Season 1 of HEROES made the superhero concept palatable to people who watched LOST and crime procedurals. HEROES REBORN is clearly something for the fans who already know the show and are willing to accept the absence of Claire and Peter and Sylar and others.

I don't think it's going to revolutionize the superhero genre like Season 1, but I think this is a good product and I'd be pleased for HEROES to have a better final note than the Season 4 finale. That said, it is inevitably an *awkward* note. Thankfully, Jack Coleman's Noah is present and the show is doing a good job of recapturing the production style of the old series, or this wouldn't really be anything like the previous HEROES at all.

I didn't see anything to indicate that Noah had forgotten about Lyle? Bringing back Molly was quite pleasing. I thought Zachary Levi was terrifying and I was amazed at how he eliminated *all* of Chuck's characteristics; he was nearly unrecognizable.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

I also thought it was good.  In fact, I watched the prequel web series "Dark Matters" before it - it's a prequel series focusing on Quentin (conspiracy guy) and his sister (an EVO).  Both were pretty well done. 

What I like is that this isn't a reimagining entirely - there's threads tied to the first run.  And if we get more Micah, more Molly, etc - with cameos/flybys from non-HRG characters, this could really become what season 2 of Heroes was supposed to be - a new story each season.  It's a shame that Heroes wasn't produced now - after American Horror Story and True Detective, I think Kring might've had the guts to go through with his plan.

80% of my problem with Heroes seasons 2-4 have to do with Sylar.  With him out of the picture (only referenced in a visual cameo, which might've even only been in Dark Matters now that I think about it), it has a chance to succeed.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

Where can I watch DARK MATTERS outside of iOS? I really hate the app.

20 (edited by Slider_Quinn21 2015-09-29 22:11:13)

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

I watched it On Demand.  Or on the website.  http://www.nbc.com/heroes-reborn/dark-matters/episodes

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

So, Volume Five, Week Two. It was okay.

I guess the problem I'm having right now is that only some of the character arcs are really compelling in themselves and much of the story is still being driven by vagueness without concrete information. This drove me *crazy* with the original Season 1 of HEROES, but it also kept me coming back because I was invested in the characters. How would Claire deal with learning about her powers? What was Peter's secret as he ventured forward and learned more about his true nature? How was Nikki going to cope with her identity crisis? How could Hiro become a hero?

With HEROES REBORN, I'm not as invested in the characters. The Noah Bennett arc is strong, but the lack of solid information, even with clues, is keeping me from getting into it. The Luke character arc wasn't as well handled as I'd hoped; his lack of enthusiasm for continuing his murder spree actually reduces the impact of the reveal that he's an EVO. It would have worked better if he'd continued to genuinely hate EVOs right up to discovering he's what he's been hunting; the way they did it is instead rather muted.

The Ren and Katana Girl arcs suffer from the same problem as Molly Walker and Taylor. There is really no clear sense of who these people are. Why does Ren have so much time and enthusiasm for the Katana Girl mystery? Miko herself is largely devoid of personality. Molly is vulnerable and in danger, but there's no sense of who she is either or what she cares about or what she wants. Taylor is defined by being an agent and Francis' girlfriend. This absence of individuality is also matched by an absence of information. It's not fun to watch these characters onscreen.

The girl in the Arctic Circle has no personality and she's fighting a vague sense of vagueness.

The Carlos as El Vengador arc is strong. The Tommy teleportation arc is strong. Mostly because these characters are well-defined and have interesting dilemmas. Carlos is a burnout who suddenly finds direction from his need for vengeance and answers; Tommy is seeking peace but at the center of an EVO plot. There's mystery, but there's also concrete information. I know who these people are and what they want even if I don't fully understand what's going on around them. Same with Noah Bennett. But that means with 50 per cent of the show, I don't know who these people are and I also don't know what's going on.

So, basically, it's a Tim Kring show without Bryan Fuller to help.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

I agree, mostly. The whole series feels muted and aimless to me. They started the series with a big exciting attack, but then immediately flashed forward a year, making that event seem less important. They could have just picked up that story from there, with most of the public feeling sympathy for the evos, but the mystery of who attacked the event. That would allow them to have a bunch of otherwise unrelated characters, united by this one event and hunted by whoever blew the place up.
Instead we get false mystery and Hollow intrigue.

Zachary Levi's character never got the chance to be dark and menacing. I never had the chance to believe that he didn't have powers before he did have powers. And his wife is friggin annoying!

I don't care about the Japanese characters who are just less interesting knockoffs of Hiro and Ando.

I don't care about Noah's meandering storyline.

Molly would have been a great character to focus on, if they did that. But they didn't.

Tommy is okay, but I feel like I've seen it all a hundred times before.

Carlos is okay, but seems useless. This is a big thing with the show. There doesn't seem to be a thread connecting any of these people. I'm sure that they will all unite at some point, but are we going to spend most of the series just spinning our wheels? How much of this series thus far could be edited out without hurting whatever main arc eventually comes out of it?

It would be different if these characters were very compelling, but they're not. So we have no plot and no characters. Why did they bring this show back?

I want to rewrite it so badly! But it would be a waste of my time, so I probably shouldn't. I could make this good though.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

I was thinking back on the original series and Season 1. And it wasn't really *that* different from what HEROES REBORN is doing as far as multiple characters in spread out locations dealing with separate stories. I think the *main* difference was the scripting style. The overall plot might have been all about the myth-arc of evolved humans. But the individual scenes, as scripted, were not about the mythology, but rather the characters.

HEROES REBORN done Season 1 style would be subtly different. Noah's scenes would be less about finding out what the Evil Company and more about him and Quentin bonding over their respective losses and recovering from their grief. Ren's storyline would be about how he's an obsessive gamer who keeps treating Real Life like a game only to be hit with consequence and danger and loss. Luke's storyline would be about his bloodlust for EVOs only to realize he's one of them. I think Carlos' plot has been pretty Season 1-esque -- every scene is about his trauma and his rage. Tommy's plot has been about his loneliness and isolation.

I really have no issue with the *plots* themselves, but rather the scripting style. And I think that this is what Bryan Fuller brought to the table. In Volume 4, Sylar's father was going to be the satanic villain of the volume. Fuller took that plot and just made it Sylar and John Glover talking for 3 - 4 scenes. The hunt for metahumans was part of the story, but it was ultimately about Sylar recognizing that his killing spree would simply leave him empty, isolated and alone. That emphasis on characterization is missing from HEROES REBORN.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

I feel like this season is good but not really all that interesting, if that makes any sense.  I've been pleasantly surprised that Noah is the only real character who has shown back up (which makes sense from a plot standpoint).  Mohinder and Hiro have been referenced, but almost nothing else.  And I feel like the show feels a bit more fresh.  I'm gonna stick with it.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

I thought Episode 4 of HEROES REBORN was awful. One of the most unsatisfying and empty episodes of HEROES ever made.

It drove me crazy that there was no real progress most of the plots, just delaying and stalling. Carlos makes some noise about committing to the vigilante life and puts together some equipment, but the episode ends before it goes anywhere. Katana Girl and Ren make it to the States but don't learn anything new. Noah and Quintin make it to Molly Walker but learn nothing new. And then there's Malina and Farah -- the show explains nothing of who they are or what they're doing.

I felt like nothing really happened aside from Tommy and Luke getting exposed as EVOs. But there was no weight to any of it. Tommy's plot was too short and quick to sell his desperation and grief. And Luke. His plot is very badly handled.

For Luke, there was no sense of how he went from eagerly murdering EVOs to becoming disenchanted with it. In his first scene, he kills EVOs because they're dangerous and he sees no alternative. But then, it's established that he wants to be selective in his targets; he doesn't want to pursue Tommy. In which case -- what is he trying to accomplish? Is he trying to rid the world of EVOs one by one? If so, why does he want to let Tommy go? Is he trying to salve his grief by taking out his rage on a race he's dehumanized? Then again, why does he want to spare Tommy?

Without a clear sense of where Luke started, there's no sense of where he's gone or how he's changed. And Joanne. Her character is played as a goofy, comedic, cartoonish serial killer. It's completely at odds with Luke's anger and hatred; it's like the two actors are in completely different productions and it undermines Luke's arc completely.

There were two scenes in Episode Four that were just a train wreck of Tim Kring's poorly considered writing. The first scene was Erica, the head of Renautas, dealing with her daughter, Taylor. Taylor asks about the whereabouts of Francis, her EVO lover, and she asks her mother why Renautas wants with EVOs. Erica dodges every question, refuses to offer a single concrete response to Taylor's queries -- and then she acts astonished and hurt when Taylor betrays her! Incredulous that leaders who are vague and evasive don't inspire trust.

To me, this scene exemplifies everything wrong with Tim Kring's writing. Characters inexplicably acting against their own interests because the writer has decided where the story will go -- Taylor betraying her mother -- rather than letting the characters and situations decide. Scripts and scenes that offer meaningless dialogue with no clear information and no sense of what is happening or why the viewer should be emotionally invested.

And then there's the scene where Noah confronts Taylor. For the first time ever, actor Jack Coleman is completely defeated by the script. It starts with Noah holding Taylor at gunpoint, demanding Molly Walker's location. Threatening her. But within a few lines of dialogue, Noah is suddenly trying to convince Taylor to switch sides! With no previous relationship between the two characters having been established, the entire scene becomes incoherent, jumping between hostility to emotional appeals. And Coleman completely fails to sell the transition or find any way to play this scene convincingly. After four years of HEROES, Tim Kring finally broke Jack Coleman with Season 5.

And then Molly Walker dies. We never got to know this adult Molly on HEROES REBORN. We had no sense of what she wanted, what she was looking for her, what she loved, hated or feared or what she stood for or believed. She may as well have been a cardboard cutout. At the very least, she should have been used to give a clear example of how this 'digitizing EVO powers' concept works and how it could be used -- but Episode 4 is vague and unclear about how the tech works or will be applied outside of the Renautas compound, and then it's taken off the board anyway.

Digitizing powers seems to be HEROES REBORN's new concept and it has been almost totally unexplored.

HEROES in Season 1 wasn't perfect and almost all of the above flaws were present. But Season 1 had Bryan Fuller smoothing out awkward character actions and decisions in the dialogue, making sure every scene was about the relationship between the people in the scene as opposed to the plot devices. There was also a sense of incremental progress. There was one episode where Hiro and Ando spent the whole episode wandering around a parking lot -- but it ended with Hiro confronting his father and realizing his dad was part of the metahuman plot. Every episode ended with some sense of what was coming. Episode 4 doesn't even try for that.

... I think it's time Tim Kring reconsidered his day job. He's not a good writer. He can't execute character arcs. He can't build mysteries. He can't create a sense of advancement. He can't write plots where characters act in accordance with their goals or natures. He can't exploit his assets for maximum impact. He can't communicate information clearly. This is evident in Seasons 2 - 4 of HEROES, shockingly present in nearly every episode of TOUCH.

He's a great producer. Every Tim Kring production has lavish location shooting, beautiful photography, stirring music and amazing actors. Maybe he should stick to budgets and logistics and let somebody else lead his writers' rooms. Megan Ganz. Tim Minear. Michael Taylor. Ronald D. Moore. Somebody else.

But of course I'll watch the rest of REBORN. I'm a superhero fan; I'm always eager to see how the genre turns out even if it's a catastrophe.

Here's hoping Episode 5 makes me eat my words!

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

Hunnh. I was typing up my thoughts on the fifth episode -- but my thoughts are pretty much the same as the ones I had on the fourth episode, only with different scenes to give as examples of Kring's flawed writing.

.... so, nothing to add here. *sigh* It's really sad to see.

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Sad, but not surprising.

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I enjoyed Season 1 on the BBC but never had time to watch later seasons.

Guess I had a Lucky Escape huh?

"It's only a matter of time. Were I in your shoes, I would spend my last earthly hours enjoying the world. Of course, if you wish, you can spend them fighting for a lost cause.... But you know that you've lost." -Kane-

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

ireactions wrote:

Hunnh. I was typing up my thoughts on the fifth episode -- but my thoughts are pretty much the same as the ones I had on the fourth episode, only with different scenes to give as examples of Kring's flawed writing.

.... so, nothing to add here. *sigh* It's really sad to see.

Um. I have pretty much the same opinion of the sixth episode. Well. I'll say this for HEROES REBORN; it's certainly efficient to review! All you need is an initial review and to set it up like a form letter.

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Sad but true. They could have saved so much time if they just made it a two hour movie.

31 (edited by Slider_Quinn21 2015-11-02 14:24:10)

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

SPOILERS

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Is it just me or is the idea of Claire dying in childbirth just crazy?

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

SPOILERS





I didn't understand it at all. How could Claire die? I thought maybe the shadow-girl's power-negation ability would play some role, but the dots were never connected.

I continue to be baffled by pretty much every storyline in HEROES REBORN up to this point. Why was Luke hunting Evos? Revenge? He was targeting people who had nothing to do with June 13. The belief that all Evos should be exterminated? Did he really think his murder spree was going to reduce the global population of Evos significantly?

Why the hell does Hiro, the TIME TRAVELLER, tell Noah that they have to hurry upon their arrival at June 13? Why does Hiro refuse to save anyone? If events up to the present have to be maintained, why doesn't he just freeze time and extract every person at the festival one by one and transport them to the 'present' day, ensuring that they will have survived without affecting any events leading up to the present? Why the hell does a TIME TRAVELLER believe in 'fate' or that events can't be changed?

Why did the video game creator seek Hiro's help only to trap him in a video game?

Why did Molly Walker feel the need to kill herself? Why was she afraid of Noah? Why did Noah need to forget about Claire's children, exactly? Why did he order the Haitian to kill him if he ever tried to find out? Are these actual mysteries? Or is it just incompetence?

I just can't figure out what's going on or how to get invested. This series has no relatable characters, no meaningful purpose, no clear plots -- it's just mindless foreshadowing to some story that is never going to be worth the build-up. Tim Kring really needs to find a new line of work.

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Well, they explained how Claire died. Aside from that...

Ugh, this show. I thought it was supposed to be about superheroes. I thought it was supposed to be fun. Instead, it's so laboured, slow, self-important and the sweet, earnest, good-hearted Matt Parkman is a villain? What the hell is that?

This is one of those areas where it's such a drastic 180 from before that some detailed explanation for how and why Matt's turned from good to evil is absolutely required. The vagaries of Tim Kring's characterization are not acceptable in most circumstances; with Matt, it is absolutely impossible to believe his cruelty or willingness to use his powers to murder when the only motivation offered is *money* and a seat of on the lifeboat he doesn't even believe in.

Disgusted.

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Agreed. But then, they never cared much about keeping Parkman consistent.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

Well. HEROES REBORN is cancelled. Honestly, I can't believe Tim Kring had so many years to bring his series back and so much opportunity to do something great and instead produced this tedious mess. No relatable characters. A clumsy, nonsensical plot that's stretched out with stalling methods and delaying tactics that would make Bill Dial balk. Random characterization with people making onscreen decisions so baffling it's impossible to take it seriously -- like Hiro telling his TELEPORTING, TIME TRAVELING son to ABANDON him to fight clone soldiers alone for no adequately explained reason.

With Season 1, all these flaws were present -- but Bryan Fuller was helping rewrite all the scripts. Shifting it so that the delaying tactics came off as opportunities to have actors interact and reveal their characters. The plot would be slow, but we would become close to the characters. The characters, when doing nonsensical things, would see their behaviour rationalized through Fuller's in-depth characterization revealing their flaws and errors in judgement. Without Fuller, the scripts are simply exposition and the exposition is incoherent.

NBC should have refused to resurrect HEROES unless Tim Kring were restricted to a non-creative position. He's great at casting. He's great at production. He's great at finding amazing directors and making sure they have first-rate locations and effects and cinematography and the actual writing should have been led by someone else. Fuller would not have been available, so somebody else -- Jane Espenson and David Fury (BUFFY, ANGEL), Doris Egan (HOUSE, SMALLVILLE), Bryan Q. Miller (SMALLVILLE, BATGIRL), Chris Black (SLIDERS, UGLY BETTY), Michael Taylor (BATTLESTAR GALACTICA) -- someone with wit, a sense of myth and legend and with some experience writing superheroes. Fuller understood what Kring clearly doesn't: superheroes are a mythic representation of idealized human potential, something Kring understands but doesn't know how to evoke or portray. Volumes 2, 3 and 5 made it very clear: Kring needed someone to help him out with that, and any one of the above writers would have been able to rewrite his scenes the way Fuller did.

HEROES REBORN is a disgraceful abomination to the franchise.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

Lol. I just came in here to rant that! I was initially excited about Reborn but it has been an utter disaster.

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The thing is, HEROES has no more plot holes than any other fantasy series I enjoy. I loved SMALLVILLE and read all the comic books, for God's sake. But HEROES REBORN has no emotion, no heart, no depth, no meaning, no joy, no wonder, no imagination. It's just plot, and it's not a particularly rewarding or engaging plot and what REBORN did to Matt Parkman is a crime against humanity.

Well. I did steal the title from this series for SLIDERS REBORN. Originally, SLIDERS REBORN was going to be SLIDERS: QUANTUM QUINTOLOGY and I think we can agree that REBORN is a much more striking banner.

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Seeing Matt Parkman hold a defenseless woman at gunpoint and threaten her for three wristwatches was just contemptible. For God's sake -- Matt was a police officer and a good one! He believed in protecting the innocent and defenseless and there was no need for him to put a gun to Taylor's head! All he had to do was read Erica's mind; instead, Kring has written a formerly sweet, sincere figure as a malicious, sadistic monstrosity and with no more rationalization than a brief rant about wanting his due in life.

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At one point, Taylor snaps at Erica Kravid: "Enough STALLING!" And then Matt Parkman's character arc ends in a literal car crash. There comes a point when writers, having lost their way and knowing it, end up handing this sort of thing to their critics.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

I've read what you've wrote, and I've really been unable to get enough emotion together to really be upset or disappointed in the series.  It's not good, and it hasn't improved on the mistakes that made seasons 2-4 the disasters they ended up being.  It's television that's entertaining but forgettable. 

"Company Woman" seems to cross over the line to just plain bad.  And it does some things that this show simply doesn't need to do.  I'm invested enough in this series to follow along and not much else.  I don't remember character names, even main ones.  I don't remember what happened to HRG except that he disappeared in the storm.  Was it someone we knew?  Was it clear who it was?  Why hasn't he been mentioned the last couple of episodes?  Isn't he the reason most of us are still watching this?

And in a show like that, when we don't care enough to learn the characters' names, why are they trying to make a 3-dimensional bad guy this late in the game?  I don't care about Erica (whose name I know because it's mentioned 10 times an episode).  When Tommy (a name I had to look up and he's a lead) asks her if it's true that she's been behind everything, she goes "Does it matter?" with an evil grin.  And I thought, okay....at least she's a bad guy now.  But then you throw these weird flashbacks in that makes us try and relate, but it's way too little way too late.  A villain can't be 1-dimensional all the way and then made interesting all the sudden.  She's not an interesting character, and this stuff didn't make her any more interesting.

The sins of the first season finale was that they set things up too well.  We'd seen everything and knew what was going to happen - we were just waiting for the puzzle pieces to finally land.  This one seems like a total mess, and there's just 40-minutes left.  And now that it seems pretty clear that this is the end, I don't think we're going to get any sort of resolution.  It's just another 13-episode glimpse into a world that has a lot of potential that it's failed to tap into over and over again.

Matt as a bad guy?  Is it a betrayal of the character?  Honestly, I don't know.  Or care.  We're talking about a 4.5-season show that has been good for most of one season.  There's probably 30 episodes that are good, and almost all of them were in season one.  Almost every character has been run through the ringer, and I can picture any of them going crazy and evil.  There's no consistency.  Heck, when it was hinted that Mohinder was a terrorist, I believed it.  Why not?

(Side note - I've made same argument about Sliders - there are only a handful of good episodes, and they're all basically the first season, if you count season 1-2 as one season).

Heroes:Reborn was just a bad idea.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

I actually like Volumes 1 and 4 a lot. Volume 2 was interesting but an awkward abortion. Volume 3 started well but got convoluted. Volume 5 was boring.

In my view, HEROES REBORN could have been excellent. The problem wasn't the ideas. Kring is always full of ideas. The problem is that he executes brilliant ideas without the imagination, skill, care or cleverness needed to make them funny, dramatic, compelling and exciting. There were perfectly worthwhile character arcs here.

The first thing I'd have done: I'd have trimmed down the characters. There were too many people spread across the globe, especially for 13 episodes. So, I'd stick to three pairings: Noah Bennett and Quintin, Tommy and Miko, Erica and Taylor -- with characters like serial killers Luke & Joanne and Farah & Malina allowed to rotate in the slot for the fourth pairing.

I'd have made Tommy the fanboy of Katana Girl who can't remember how he ended up in Tokyo and ending up in an international spy movie, Noah and Quintin a buddy cop film, and Erica and Taylor as the antagonists of the story.

The second thing I'd have done: I'd just have used Bryan Fuller's technique for handling Tim Kring's stuff. Erica's character arc is a mess because the efforts to make her a nuanced antagonist consisted of her spouting vagaries and dodging questions while claiming it was all for a good cause. Noah and Quintin's scenes were purely expository; there was no in-depth focus on how they deal with regret and loss; Noah's regret makes him angry and dangerous while Quintin's regret makes him desperate and fearful, and both help each other heal and move forward. Erica is a crusader whose daughter, Taylor the knight errant, is losing faith in the cause but afraid to think her mother would be wrong.

I genuinely think that Tim Kring comes up with good stories -- he just doesn't tell them well.

Whenever Bryan Fuller was present on Volumes 1 and 4, the above-approach alleviated all of Kring's problems. The slow-moving plots were treated as an opportunity to go all character oriented. The nonsensical characterization in Kring's plots would, from Fuller, be depictions of troubled and conflicted characters. Subtract the Fuller-influence and presentation and you end up with HEROES REBORN.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

Is Volume 4 the Circus?  If so, it was better.  So much of the in-between stuff was a mess for me that it blends together.  All I remember is that Sylar basically power-raped Claire (with actual rape imagery) and still was semi-treated as a redeemable character.

And I agree - I think he needs someone to focus him a little bit.  What's interesting to me is that I liked the idea that it was a new story with new characters when it was announced - that our main characters from the original run would be there but would be supporting instead of leading.  But I found myself so uninterested in the new characters that I actually perked up more when we saw Mohinder or Angela or Parkman. 

His ideas are good - I thought it was pretty clever that Tommy and Malina ended up being the twins.  It was a neat twist that I didn't see coming.  I think the world they set up was pretty cool, and I think it perfectly played off how season 4 left off.  I LOVE that he left Sylar out of it.  And, for the most part, the Petrellis. 

But the new characters weren't interesting, entire plots (the luchador guy) went nowhere, and the acting has been pretty weak.  For the most part, I think Zachary Levi is the only one that seems interested in being there.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

I would argue that Kring is a genius at conception who simply needs another genius to help him (re)write all the scripts. But outside of Fuller, he has never sought that collaborator, and as a result, TOUCH and HEROES REBORN are just embarrassments. Imagine if Josh Friedman (SARAH CONNOR CHRONICLES) had been asked to take Kring's REBORN ideas but shepherd the stories from outlines to shooting scripts and rewrite every scene.

I suspect a lot of the casting choices were due to budget. The HEROES REBORN actors are all excellent. I wouldn't blame them for any of the material aside from their agreeing to perform it. All the ideas here -- digitizing superpowers! Picking up years after the Season 4 cliffhanger! Creating distance from Sylar and Peter! The twins! The villains are actually trying to save humanity! There's neat stuff here -- but it would have been best if Kring had written brief summaries of the 13-episodes -- and then had a collaborator taking over fleshing out each episode and making sure each installment and each arc were focused, tight and meaningful and that every character's line and action informed and revealed.

A lot of the developments are just artless. For example, the idea that Tommy is actually suffering from amnesia is not built to -- there aren't clues and hints that mislead but fit. The memory wipe, as a blanket explanation, doesn't explain why Tommy doesn't notice all the gaps in his memory. There's a lot of blatant filler in these episodes like the videogame segments. None of the scenes for Luke actually address his hatred for superhumans and discovering he's one of them. These are all problems that, I think, are present in any first draft; it's important to then refine, rewrite and revise.

Instead, I often get the sense that Kring is just not going through the process of developing and reworking his material. This was something Bryan Fuller did for him and, for whatever reason, Kring has failed to find someone else to perform that role. I don't know why. When Fuller returned to HEROES for Volume 4 ("Fugitives," where the government is hunting superhumans), Kring readily deferred to Fuller, so it's not like Kring was dismissive of collaboration at a later date.

Not a popular opinion here: I thought Volume 4 was excellent. I'm not saying it wasn't filled with logical errors, but with Fuller back, everything made *emotional* sense. And then, with Volume 5, the circus, -- I know you guys liked it, but to me, it was much like HEROES REBORN -- slow, bland, vague and boring.

When HEROES REBORN was finding writers, there were plenty of available veterans writers from BUFFY, ANGEL, SMALLVILLE, THE DEAD ZONE, LIE TO ME out there, all with experience writing superhero shows filled with stirring visuals and punchy dialogue and striking characters. Kring is good at conception, he needs a partner to help him write the scripts.

It's a real shame he didn't do this and it's a really sad way for HEROES to go out.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

I agree with all of the above. This season has been a mess, and makes me a little upset that Heroes was the series that they decided to bring back (instead of something like Chuck). I think another problem was the mid-season time warp. When they came back, things had changed, but they never really let us know what had changed and what hadn't. It made it difficult for me to follow the story, and I'm not someone who usually can't follow a story like this.

The potential was here. I just wish the writing was there. The fanfic writer in me kinda wants to take the ideas and rewrite the whole damn thing, but that would take too much time.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

Deux Ex Childrena?

How come time travel powers + wind (?) powers = Fifth Element powers?  If Nathan/Tommy's power was to leech powers (like his uncle and grandfather), then why doesn't he ever do this again?  Does he only steal one power once and that's the one he gets forever?  How come the lab technician was killed immediately after he touched Nathan/Malina, but HRG just goes white and then dies?

Why would any of these reboot/sequels EVER end on another cliffhanger?

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

I thought that he shared Malina's power at the end, but none of it really makes sense. He took Claire's power and killed her. Then he took Hiro's power. But they never really said which kind of leech he was. They didn't seem to care.

HRG was a main character, so he got a death scene. This bugs me on TV... Important characters never suffer as much as extras. Like on Arrow when poison gas kills extras in seconds, but doesn't harm any main characters.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

Informant wrote:

I thought that he shared Malina's power at the end, but none of it really makes sense. He took Claire's power and killed her. Then he took Hiro's power. But they never really said which kind of leech he was. They didn't seem to care.

I mean, maybe?  It seemed like an entirely new power - not just "pushing" the flare away.  And his taking away of powers was permanent, right?  So if he leeched Malina's power, he would've leeched it when they were kids too.  In fact, that was the reason they were split up.  So why be un-split up later? 

But, yeah, it doesn't matter.  They didn't seem to care.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

*groans*

Why oh why oh why oh why did Tim Kring, knowing this was a single-season mini-series, END ON A CLIFFHANGER?!?!?!?!?

Tim Kring is teasing (and threatening) some follow-up to HEROES REBORN, NBC president Bob Greenblatt (also the guy who called SLIDERS in Season 3 to be much stronger than Seasons 1 - 2) said that if Kring had more ideas, there could be more HEROES. Ugh.

The sad thing is, the series finale wasn't even that bad, but it had the best and worst of HEROES. Unlike the previous episodes, it was filled with incident and didn't feel slow and stalled. Like the previous episodes, there was no care for theme, characterization and storytelling. With some tweaks and adjustments, HEROES REBORN could have been about sacrifice.

If Claire's death had been presented as her sacrificing herself for her children, if Tommy's identity crisis had been shown as him sacrificing his identity to save the world, if Carlos' issue had been that he'd taken credit for someone else giving up their lives -- then Noah's death would have worked. But REBORN was far, far too late in indicating that Malina and Tommy's powers could combine while being lethal to the conduit.

It's a real shame, and it just goes to show how HEROES REBORN would have been better off if Tim Kring would take a step back from writing and hire someone else to produce the scripts.

Re: Heroes Reborn on NBC: They're back...

Weird. You could swap out Chris Carter for Tim Kring and post this in the X-Files thread. smile

I agree, of course.