Why Heroes Needs to Get Lost

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We love Heroes. We wouldn't dedicate so much time to this fan site if we didn't.

Still, there are improvements we'd make to the show, especially as it zooms through season three (in an attempt, which we're grateful for, to make up for a lackluster second season). In a nutshell, Heroes must get Lost.

The series must follow the lead of another serialized show, one with an abundance of characters and back stories. Lost focuses on one character each episode, still adding to the overall story lines, yet allowing itself to set a reasonable pace for the show, while also giving various actors and characters a chance to shine.

Just consider the rate at which viewers were sped through character developments this week, all in a single episode:

Claire went from victim... to tortured daughter... to vengeful hero on the verge of evil. We loved the idea of Sylar's attack on Claire having a profound affect on this troubled teenager. It was a mind rape, after all. But wouldn't it have been nice to focus on just what she was going through for a full hour?

Don't just toss her into a cargo box with her birth mom (who viewers barely know, yet are led to believe is a disciple of Mr. Miyagi all of a sudden?!?) and then set her on a revenge trip to Primatech Paper. Let us feel Claire's pain in-depth.

Peter Petrelli Picture

Heroes could learn a few lessons about how Lost treats John Locke and company.

Sylar learned he was Angela's son... then was teamed with HRG... then regressed to his old ways. We've known Sylar as the ultimate bad guy, an evil killing machine. But within five minutes, his mother convinced him that his destiny was actually to help The Company. And both Sylar and HRG bought into it on the spot!

Can't we see Sylar wrestle with these two halves of his personality? We're not asking to see him on a psychologist's couch - but we'd have preferred for him and HRG to have formed a partnership for more a few episodes, with each side slowly, subtlely growing suspicious of the other. Instead, HRG comes right out and announces his intentions to kill Sylar at the end of Monday's hour.

Peter escaped the body of a criminal and was instantly transported to the future. Well, okay then. We'll likely see this angle develop next episode, but wouldn't it have been cool to get Peter's perspective for almost an entire hour of being inside this evil body? It was confusing enough when we learned that Future Peter could transport people into new bodies, but just as we were beginning to ramifications of this act, Peter's setting is changed. Again.

See what we mean? These are essentially the three main characters on Heroes. And each is involved in what could be an interesting story line, if the writers gave each plot sufficient time to develop.

Our complaint with season two wasn't that it was slow; it was that it was slow AND boring. This season hs potential, but not if every character development, twist and turn is rushed in the manner of those described above.

And why are they rushed? Because there are simply too many Heroes on the series. Again, similar to Lost, this series needs to cut down on its protagonists. Sorry, Maya, Mohinder, Parkman, you need to go.

What do you think of our assessment? Agree? Disagree? We'd love to hear feedback!

Matt Richenthal is the Editor in Chief of TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter and on Google+.


When you have too many characters, focusing on their personal lives would be tedious for the viewers. I mean think about it for a minute. I loved season 1 but there were certain episodes which dragged on and I felt like fastforwarding parts which included the personal lives of certain characters. I guess not everybody can have what they want though I mean you'll always find certain people would prefer the show to focus more on getting to know individual characters while others go for the adrenaline inducing pace. Whatever it is I hope that season 3 will be somewhat of a middleground between season 1 and 2 (leaning more towards season 1 maybe). The whole incorporating the future as part of the storyline is great, but the reason for the collapse of the future is not so great. We've had *inevitable explosion* already in season 1..the least u can ask for is something different. Explosion might depict something grand and terrible but to me all it is, is a massive boom and thousands of innocent casualities. I'd rather a more creative unconventional reason. Another thing I wish people would stop drawing parallels between heroes and lost or at least do so in some combined heroes and lost forums. Not everybody follows it. Personally after seeing how many seasons there are in a dvd store and after watching certain clips and reading the summaries I'd have to say that I'm not interested. I like heroes therefore I watch it, period. Lost I personally don't give a toss about. What I wish for Heroes is that it wont end up being like House, which I stopped watching after season 3. The plot and storyline and main character only worked well for season 1 until it got repetitive and annoying. This is whats tragic for certain shows. They amaze and baffle viewers in the season debut but future seasons weren't planned to go in sync with the former. So this is what u get from rushed planning and trying to get the show to go a certain direction, pulling the idea back and then trying out something else. There needs to be a middle ground between character development and pacing. The two can go hand in hand if care is taken with the writing of the script. Really one thing I don't want to see is the demise of my current favourite tv show. I saw so much potential that it would be really tragic for a show which became popular so fast, to sink at an equal speed.


I think the show is going in a great direction. Sylar talking about the hunger and such in the last episode...seriously good stuff.
A point to consider:
If you have characters capable of time travel and precognition and opt to NOT have them use it, then you shoot your credibility. Jumping back and forth, checking actions and the effects...this is what a sensible time traveling capable being would do. The manipulation of time, because we expect it to flow in a linear fashion, is always a bit problematic on screen or on paper, however I feel that the time travel abilities are used very, very poorly right now. What I do hope they deal with is the fact that a character like Hiro (and, by extension, the other time travelers) is going to STOP experiencing time and reality in a manner that makes sense to anyone else. This should seriously mess with their psychological states and alter them completely, even more than immortality alters Claire. Hiro could, in essence, live out ten timelines and lives at once. No non-time traveling being could understand that state of existence. As such, I do hope they explore that heavily.


i dont think they need to get rid of anyone, but the idea of focussing more on each character would be nice, sometimes u get teh feeling u dont really know whats going on and that u would have liked to have seen more of things. they can get rid of parkman and maya, though, i dont like them at all and they have no contribution to the series.


I love hearing people compare Heroes to Lost. They're such completely different shows, but the parallels that you can draw from them never cease to amaze me! Maya is the new Ana Lucia - she needs to GO. Mohinder and Parkman are cast originals, I'm invested in their story, I care deeply for them, etc. Maya I can DEFINITELY do without. As far as I can tell after the premiere, they're only keeping her around as eye candy - which will never score any points with me.


The assessment is pretty spot on. They do seem to be rushing, trying to pack in huge amounts of action to make up for S2. But how many action movies do we remember for having fantastic storylines, which is what many people were attracted to in Heroes in the first place. Have you forwarded these to anyone that works on the show? From what I've read on the site they're already far enough ahead that it might not matter at all, but perhaps with Fugitives they'll hit the sweet spot.


You're absolutely right - they are TOTALLY rushing major character developments. I love Heroes, it's my favorite show, but I am having to give the characters and their writers MAJOR benefit of the doubt at this point. I mean, you hit the nail on the head with the gripe about Sylar and HRG - some kind of clue as to what the hell was going on inside Sylar's head would have been nice. It almost seems like the writers know these complaints are out there too, and will likely be made, and so they throw in a single line to diffuse the problem, like for example Sylar's remark to HRG (when HRG tells him that Angela is just playing him), Sylar says "yeah, but aren't you curious how it will all play out?" That's all we get to explain Sylar's bizarre whole new side to his character. Why is he suddenly trying to control himself, why is he letting Noah boss him around?, how can he not have more questions to ask Angela, like NOW. The last episode left me hungry for answers, but not regarding WHAT'S GOING TO HAPPEN NEXT, but WHAT'S FRIGGEN GOING ON RIGHT NOW. I.E. give stuff a little depth. They've put the show on fast forward and it's not necessary, and may just well lose the chunk of the audience that isn't already devoted. It's almost like they've taken the problems of season 2 and gone equally too far in the other direction. Of course, I am still totally psyched for next monday. (I like Parkman. And I will confess, I sort of like Mohinder too. But Maya SUCKS - I mean, Claude, Eden, Hannah, Candice...all these great characters who came and went, and we're still being asked to care about Maya?)


Heroes Quotes

Sylar: You're like me.
Peter: I will never let myself become you.
Sylar: You already are, brother.

[after teleporting to NYC] Yatta! Hello New York!

Hiro Nakamura

Heroes Music

  Song Artist
Song Road to Joy Bright Eyes
Song Mustang Sally Wilson Pickett
Song I Want It That Way Backstreet Boys