How To Fix Heroes

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Despite its ranking as the lowest-rated show on network television, and despite the fact that many of the most passionate Heroes defenders have turned on the show after an anti-climactic, boring season finale, NBC has not officially axed this once-great drama.

The same knuckleheads that forced out Conan O'Brien after seven months as host of The Tonight Show are actually considering another season of Heroes because... well, they have few alternatives.

Samuel in Command

Samuel's accent was just one of several inconsistencies that plagued season four of Heroes.

If the series does return, we might as well offer a few suggestions for how it can stop sucking. We're no longer fooling ourselves into thinking it can ever go back to season one quality, but if Tim Kring and company follow these ideas, perhaps it won't be the laughing stock of TV critics around the country...

  • Get rid of Tracy, Mohinder and Ando. Yes, the first two are somehow still characters on the show. It's utterly asinine to ask viewers to care about people that pop up randomly every 10 episodes. No need to kill them off. Just utter two lines about their whereabouts next year and be done with it. Ando, meanwhile, serves no purpose other than to banter with Hiro in Japanese.
  • Don't ever mention a premonition dream ever again. Nothing gets to the heart of this show's lazy writing more than this plot device. Take the time to actually build suspense, as opposed to creating a supposedly exciting storyline simply because Angela announces she saw something happen.
  • No more time travel. If this means actually killing off Hiro, so be it.
  • Remember the name of the show. When was the last time anyone did anything heroic? Claire whines about her lot in life, Sylar is full of internal angst, Parkman literally hasn't left home in weeks. Have characters interact with actual, non-special human beings and not seem like self-absorbed, confused narcissists at all times.
  • Have a plan. This is the key factor for any solid series. Kring has admitted he and the staff don't draw out the full season ahead of time - and, man, does it show! Samuel spent 15 episodes just talking this year, not actually taking action until an event outside of anything seen or built up before (his ex rejecting him) took place.

Was there any "a-ha!" moment in season four? Did it ever feel like events fell naturally into place and followed a thought-out path when you retraced them back a few episodes?

In other words, Heroes staff, this is all we're asking if you still have a job this fall: just write a season that makes sense. Yes, things have fallen so far that we'll settle for mere logic.


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


@JackPelligrino - I agree, though Peter (not Hiro) was the perfect candidate to disengage from humanity, especially after the explosion at the end of season 1. I would of enjoyed watching an empath wrestle with having to hide himself from other specials to prevent repeats of accidents such as the explosion.


I personally think Heroes is broken beyond repair. Season 1 was great and afterwards it went down hill. You can find some good things from Seasons 2 through 4 but honestly overall it was one big jumbled mess. I gaurantee all the defenders of the past few seasons would like to see Heroes come back like it was in S1. Though I contradict my opening statement, Heroes can be fixed if NBC gets rid of Kring and hires some very talented people. No character has to be killed off right away. Just takes some damn good creative writing. You know its funny, back in S1 I was starting to get the idea that the "Company" had engineered Claire (by manipulating Nathan and Meridith Gordon to meet, fall in love, conceive a child)so that the original company members could use her as a veritable source of immortality. The writers should have kept the company and gradually over the seasons reveal that the company is behind the "Heroes" gaining their powers. We all remember from S1 that the Company appeared to be some malevolent organization bent on world domination or control. Sylar could have been written as the Companys' engineered weapon (tragic figure). Hell they could have kept the idea that Sylar and Peter were brothers (twins grown in a test tube or even Angela Petrilli as the surrogate mother). Rememeber Linderman stated that he was the reason that DL and Tracy met? All planned genetic engineering. You could even write that Adam Monroe was another experiment that was sent back into the past to affect natural evolution. Everyone forget about the ecllipse? It tied in somehow to peoples powers coming out (also their powers being turned off). Genetic experimenting has been going on even in reality. Why not make it the reason "Heroes" gained their powers. The SYMBOL is the Company's trademark or even the trademark of one person that controls the company from behind the scenes. This person is the true evil and is so secretive that only one member of the original companys' roster know they exist. This all powerful evil would be named "Uluru"!!! Heh I might as well send NBC an email to get hired on as a consultant/writer. Even my untrained hands can write better than what was written these past seasons.


I think the show could be made better by: 1) Reducing the number of new characters added each season - it's hard enough keeping up with 5 - 6 story lines without adding half a dozen more characters every season. 2) Stop changing everyone's powers every season. It's annoying when they lose the power(s) they had then gain back different or limited ones. Also stop changing people from heroes to villians and back again - I want to know who to like and who to hate. 3) Develop a consistant story line or set of story lines and have them somehow relate to each other. The reason season 1 was so good is because we knew that each character's path would eventually lead to the battle of good vs. evil in the season finale. Even though it would be copying, maybe season 5 could introduce a villian so bad that even Syler realizes he/she must be stopped and have each episode work towards that end. This would be a good opportunity to bring back bad-ass Hiro and Peter too!


Here are a few things that could help this nonsense of a show it has become.
BE CONSISTENT. For the time traveling, there has to make sense. Sometimes Hero goes back in time for no good reason, and sometimes, I'm basically yelling at my screen "just go back in time, you idiot!", for example, when someone dies by accident. Where was Hiro when Nathan was killed off??? Or Claire for that matter? Couldn't they just do a blood transfusion so he can regenerate?
NO MORE PLAYING WITH THE ABILITIES!!! Some rules have to be set. a a certain point, it gets annoying to not remember what happened to their powers. I mean Peter and Sylar were set to take on new abilities from other ones, but the others...I mean, they transformed Tracy from ice-woman to being made of water. First of all, they should have kept Nikki and continued with her storyline of D.L. and her son instead of bringing Tracy. then, there's the fact that Peter can now only take one ability at a time, whereas he was able to master all kinds of abilities before. It just doesn't make sense. Plus, stop transforming their abilities whenever it becomes convenient. We need to make Charlie disapear? Give Samuel Hiro's ability so he can teleport her! Parkman's ability is too boring? No problem, will make him go into people's minds he'll make them do anything he wants! Plus, it gets convenient, whenever they're in trouble, he sends a message to their brains and...done! Claire's blood used to cure people, but suddently, she can't cure hiro. Of course, he needs a healer instead. Does that means she won't be able to regenerate if she gets a tumor? So she's not invincible anymore? So basically, just set rules, and follow them!
THE HIRO TIME-TRAVELLING: when you're having Hiro time travelling, just make sure it doesn't completely change the storylines, it's confusing, you're losing the audience. It nice that we get to see an alternate future once in a while, but keep it simple and follow the plan, but with this show, there doesn't seem to be a plan.
ALSO, STOP ALWAYS ADDING NEW CHARACTERS: That Kristen Bell was awful, I'm not even talking about Samuel and the others... Focus on the main characters and give them storylines that are worth watching.
THE EVOLUTION OF THE CHARACTERS DON'T MAKE SENSE : of course the characters are evolving, but it has to look like it was natural not forced. Matt Parkman returns with his wife overnight like nothing happened, like he never fell in love with Daphne. and what about Sylar? God, that man seems to suffer from bipolar tendancies, good, bad, good, bad... Same thing with Nathan before he was killed off. Last year he was the villain, this year he was a good guy, come on. And what about Suresh? was he there for more than one episode this season? And who's that indian girl he's with? i used to love this show, but this nonsense has to stop!


Come on men I love this show but, they really need to stick to the first season's future perhaps in a different way, with sylar as the good guy and peter as the bad ass with a scar in his face, that really would help, i don't know if it could save the show but will be great to turn the table arround for at least one season.


I don't want to hear Claire wining about her life and being all - 'How could you?!'


If there's one thing we've been waiting for, it's the badass characters we've seen in the future. My advice, skip four or five years into the future and take it from there. We've been patient enough only seeing glimpses of them making us want more. I'd think now is probably the best time to actually give it to us.


I just found this site... how is this Heroes fan site? All there is on this site is posts bitching about the show. If you don't like it, stop watching it, and give the site to someone who likes it.


Copy X men, agreed.


One improvement I would really like to see more of is an exploration of the show's mythology. "Villains" seemed like a deliberate attempt to deconstruct the mythology of the show: they killed Bob, dismantled the Company, killed Takezo Kensei, killed Maury Parkman, killed Arthur Petrelli (the only founder left is Angela.) The first season left us with the impression that even though this was the beginning of the story for Peter, Hiro, Claire, and so forth, that there was this whole world where these special people have been fighting and killing each other. Instead of ignoring that, they should dive into it. If you look at a show like Lost, they did just that and it got pretty annoying for about two and half seasons. But then it got awesome. Also, despite the cheapness of it, when they brought back Charlie this season, they made for a pretty effective show. They kind of didn't do it justice by the way they ended that particular story arc, but... cheaply bringing back characters could be effective, and I'm thinking specifically of Claude Raines. And frankly, despite how aggravating it would be to see Sylar flip sides again, I would still love for the show to fulfill its initial promise of Sylar and Peter having a climactic showdown that ends with one of them dead. And Peter should stay the good guy. And am I the only one who thought that a volume named "Redemption" would involve Peter getting his powers back? Hiro got his. Lastly, I think the best course for Hiro is to have him realize how much more powerful than everyone he is, and basically just disengage himself from humanity, Doc Manhattan style.


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