Heroes Reborn Recap: ‘Brave New World/Odessa’: Sins of the Past Still Haunt …

25 Sep 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

‘Brave New World’ / ‘Odessa’.

In “Brave New World,” our final image was of world-saving cheerleader Claire Bennet leaping from a ferris wheel, breaking bones, and healing one last time — but this time in the name of bringing evolved humans out of anonymity.

For the battle to dominate Thursday night, NBC took a column of superheroes out of retirement and drafted Wesley Snipes to take on ABC’s Shonda Rhimes-fueled juggernaut. Though NBC’s offerings are among the more entertaining of the fall season, somewhere Olivia Pope is smirking, “It’s handled.” The revival no one was clamoring for, “Heroes Reborn” (NBC, 8 p.m.) is a 13-part miniseries about superhumans who must save the world.

There are a whole lot of characters and a whole lot of things going on with those characters and I ended up watching it twice before I felt like I knew what was happening. The e-book — with print editions to follow — is set one year after the events of the Odessa Summit and addresses many previously unanswered questions from the original series. Over the next year, invisible men and high-flying heroes are relentlessly pursued and killed, necessitating underground meet-ups to plan their future survival. Today almost every broadcast network has some superhero or comic book-inspired show, not to mention that pop culture in general is saturated with geeky content.

One such meeting becomes a bloodbath, when Luke Collins, a man wearing the friendly face of Chuck Bartowski, opens fire on the EVOs with all the trigger-happy carelessness of Steve Zissou in a gunfight. There is a feel-good gathering in Odessa, Texas, to celebrate the new partnership between humans and “evos,” but a terrorist attack there wipes out much of the city, and many evols go back into hiding as others are killed or disappeared. Luke and his wife Joanne congratulate each other on a job well done; it’s one step further on their senseless murder quest against all EVOs, as vengeance for their late son, killed in Odessa. Noah Bennet, her estranged horn-rimmed glasses wearing father and former hero-hunter, has since taken on a new life with a new job and a new wife-to-be, but the ghosts from his past aren’t far behind. They killed a bunch of them during a superhero support group meeting, but Peter Pan (Robbie Kay, who can teleport things by touching them) managed to escape, got a job at an ice cream parlor with the girl he likes, and was tormented by a bully who was secretly a tragic figure with an abusive dad.

Heroes ended with Claire Bennet (Hayden Panettiere isn’t returning because Nashville) outing the existence of evos — people with powers — to the world. As an evo “truther” tracks him down and convinces him to help investigate the disappearances, we spin around the globe to focus on other heroes — some in hiding, some just discovering their powers.

As Noah trips down Quentin’s rabbit hole, he reunites with and subsequently kills old friend René, the memory-wiping Haitian, who tries to kill Noah first. I definitely felt out of the loop as Claire’s dad tried to recover his memory, met up with a dude named Renee (Jimmy Jean-Louis) who may have been someone we were supposed to recognize, received some significant glasses, killed that guy, then discovered that guy was supposed to kill him, because he told him to. Staying true to Heroes OG form, the two-hour series premiere of Heroes Reborn was an overstuffed episode that introduced a large diverse cast of characters, human and evos alike, and plenty of plot threads.

Whether the show will coalesce into something greater than its parts or devolve, as “Heroes” did, into flashy nonsense capped by an incredibly anti-climatic climax is unclear. All in all, I’ve got no real idea what’s going on or how all of these people are going to come together, and I definitely kept feeling like there were significant moments that I was not privy to as a new viewer. NBC’s decision to air “Brave New World” and “Odessa” as a two-hour block was smart — the former on its own probably wouldn’t have hooked newcomers to the series because it culminates in the death of a returning character.

Philip Winchester plays Alex Kane (they’re both such stereotypical names that I kept forgetting which was the actor and which the character), a private Las Vegas security consultant with a murky past as a military operative (picture the Sin City sign but with “Emotional Backstory!” blinking bright). On June 13, 2014, thousands of people were killed during a presumed terrorist attack on a three-day peace summit held by Primatech, a secretive evo research company.

One day Kane foils an attempted attack on an ultra-wealthy generically Middle Eastern family, and later that night he celebrates with his ex-wife-with-benefits. None of this even mentions Parkman, Angela Petrelli, Micah Sanders and all the other Heroes veterans lined up to return, almost certainly on a doomed trip toward the buzz saw. In the middle of the night, intruders shoot her dead, and Kane, who immediatley becomes the prime suspect, gets rescued by a shadow organization run by Mr.

Notable attendees were Noah Bennet (Jack Coleman), who was there to reconcile with his estranged daughter Claire, and Luke (a very non-Chuck Zachary Levi) and Joanne Collins, who were with their 8-year-old son. Kane will be the Player, using the organization’s access to global surveillance networks and other … stuff to prevent the crime, and in exchange, eventually get revenge on those who killed his ex-wife. Looking past its viciously violent assault on Heroes nostalgia, the new series introduces a few interesting characters who offer a glimmer of hope for the weeks ahead. For someone like Tommy Clarke (Once Upon A Time’s Robbie Kay), an evo who can’t control his ability to make people disappear by touching them, and his mother, this means constantly moving.

Beyond his refined taste in dairy products, Tommy comes equipped with another gift: the ability to teleport objects and people to places unknown — or, as he discovers, wherever he’s thinking about at the time of the act. The McDreamy-less “Grey’s Anatomy” returns at 8 p.m., followed by “Scandal” and “How To Get Away With Murder,” with freshly Emmy-anointed Viola Davis on ABC. It’s one of the more inventive powers in Heroes lore, firmly on the radar of a heavy-set man who trades pennies for thoughts (YEP), as well as natural-born EVO killers Luke and Joanne.

NJ.com TV critic Vicki Hyman and super fan Erin Medley, the new dynamic duo of TV coverage, recap Sunday night’s Emmy Awards, which included a historic moment or two. Elsewhere in the world of Reborn, we meet Carlos Gutierrez, a boozing war veteran who discovers that his closet EVO brother Oscar had been masquerading around Los Angeles as a vigilante called El Vengador (basically the luchador version of Arrow), right up until Oscar’s death. There are some connections to the real world and Heroes Reborn definitely wants its evos to work as allegories to oppressed minority groups, but it comes off as trite and has been done better before… specifically by X-Men.

Even without powers of his own, Carlos takes up the El Vengador mantle and the responsibility of safeguarding an underground railroad between LA and Canada for evolved humans. He’s trying to keep a low profile and survive high school, but he’s having a hard time because he has no one at school to talk to about his powers.

Little does he know, he does have a guardian angel of sorts watching out for him, played by Pruitt Taylor Vince, who surreptitiously has Tommy’s back throughout the episode. Miko closes out the premiere, surrounded by security guards at Yamagato Tower in Tokyo, well known to Heroes fans as the former employers of Hiro Nakamura and Ando Masahashi. He’s looking for advice and connection, but doesn’t find much there — he ends up leaving the meeting early when he receives a text from his mother.

Today, he’s a horn-rimmed glasses-less Chevrolet car salesman*, who peddles on the nose speeches about memories and regret, and he is getting remarried. He introduces the series’ mystery, which is a conspiracy theory — which is worrisome since we all know TV shows often bungle these story lines (looking at you B613), and also Heroes got very boring when it started focusing on the specifics of Primatech. Quentin is also the first mouthpiece for Kring’s brand of mystic, determined and purposeful evolution: “The number of evos is higher on the planet than ever before. The edges of the shackle had rubbed against his wrist until it was raw and bloody, harsh metal slicing into the skin and flesh with each step he took. By the time Noah makes it down to Level 5, everyone is dead, save one of his old associates who tells him about Renautas’ new technology Epic, which is set to go online in Midian, Colorado, tomorrow and is powered by Molly Walker’s (Francesca Eastwood) powers.

He lectures to the kids that you don’t need superpowers to be a hero, but we quickly learn that he doesn’t believe a word of what he’s saying and only cares about drinking himself into a stupor. Part of this stems from his damaged relationship with his brother Oscar, who runs an automobile shop and accuses Carlos of abandoning the family, especially Jose, who is an evo with Kitty Pryde-like powers. He had crafted it from a piece of sheared-off metal he found in the prison yard, binding bits of broken wood around it with scraps of cloth to create a handle.

But as they got closer, a horrific scream sliced through the air, the sound of a wounded animal so loud it could be heard over their engines, an anguished cry of loss and suffering. Within moments he smashed through the sound barrier, a circle of vapour billowing in the blue as he flew away, headed east—away from China, away from his captors. Now that there were only four cars between them and the Canadian border checkpoint, Tommy’s mind had gone blank. “Brampton!” She slammed a fist on the dash. Tommy watched her struggling not to yell at him. “Come on, Kevin, you’ve got to get the details right.” They weren’t ready, not even close—and certainly not for this. It was worth a try, anyway. “‘Hero_Truther’ says that in other countries they shoot people like me in the streets.” She ignored his comment, easing off the brake to roll forward as their queue edged closer to the checkpoint.

She reached out with her right hand to touch the side of his face, as if hoping to soothe his fears away. “If we can get to Saskatchewan—” She stopped, staring ahead. “What’s happening up there?” Tommy leaned forward, squinting to see through the rain. One woman was standing beside her car near the front of the next queue over, mouth wide open as a border guard with latex gloves was preparing a DNA swab. Cutler savoured the salty tang of pistachio before spitting out fragments of shell, his remorseless gaze following the car as it sped into the distance.

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