Episode Reviews

Heroes Reborn – Under the Mask Review

Heroes Reborn continues on with “Under the Mask” but does it make any sense of the plethora of storylines from the first two hours?

After three episodes, Heroes Reborn has now shown what we can all expect from the series as a whole. We have far too many storylines all crammed into a single hour block without any regard towards conciseness or their plot points or cohesiveness of the narrative as a whole.

“Under the Mask” attempts to collects the storylines into a single point by revealing the main bad guy, the Renautas corporation. Miko and Noah both find themselves on the trail of Renautas to discover what they are doing, but it seems that they are already too late. For a while now, they’ve been working on ways to “digitize” the evos powers. I still don’t understand how you can even digitize a power into a app on a device. Now with the capture of Molly Walker, who surprisingly would rather take her chances with Renautas than go with Noah to relative safety, Renautas can reveal their ultimate project, the Evolved Persons Identification and Capture system, or EPIC.

HEROES REBORN -- "Under the Mask" Episode 103 -- Pictured: Rya Kihlstedt as Erica Kravid -- (Photo by: Christos Kalohoridis/NBC)
HEROES REBORN — “Under the Mask” Episode 103 — Pictured: Rya Kihlstedt as Erica Kravid — (Photo by: Christos Kalohoridis/NBC)

Revealed by Renautas CEO Erica Kravid (Rya Kihlstedt) who has an almost cartoonish evil mad CEO vibe, the EPIC system is quite literally a clone of Professor Xavier’s Cerebro system from X-Men including the same cheesy graphics from the films. Providing all her goons and the world’s security forces, with the new Google Glass, EPIC can reach out and hunt down all the evolved humans at will. At the center of EPIC is the captured Molly Walker, the central “processor” of the system. Her “Jean Grey” red hair gets hidden away as she fails around like a weird fish in the chair of the EPIC central room. Some of the most cringe worthy scenes have to be of her in that chair showing how much it hurts to be exploited (which don’t forget, she let herself be captured). I’m not sure what the directors told her to do during that, but looks really silly. At the same time Noah and Quentin are stuck in what appears to be the projector room (why would they go up there?) as they watch in horror as Erica demonstrates EPIC to the applause of her potential customers.

Some of the more interesting things that do get revealed though earlier in the episode surround Noah again and his previously forgotten trip to the hospital a year ago. Noah finds security footage that shows him clearly there a year go in the morgue looking at someone blond on the table. Of course they spend a lot of time teasing what is supposedly Claire Bennet under the sheet, but none of us get to see for sure who it is that Noah sees. While show runner Tim Kring stated that Clare is dead at the start of Heroes Reborn, the pure ambiguity and semi-conflicting information would suggest otherwise. Also, the line about her being dead at the beginning of the show as the fact that the show itself is called Reborn would suggest otherwise. How much would have it really cost them to just have Hayden Panettiere, or even a grainy replica of her, lying on the table?

Meanwhile, Tommy is still being an annoying teenager and disobeying his mother, which is the same as every other recycled “teenager gets superpowers” plot. While it’s unclear, after their car gets hit, I would assume his mother is now dead, and a guilt ridden Tommy has a new focus to use his powers for good.

Back in Los Angeles, Carlos dons his murdered brother’s mask as El Vengador and proceeds to get his ass kicked by a corrupt evo powered cop who has been hunting other evos. The story basically follows a similar style to this summer’s *Daredevil” format of fighting an overwhelmingly powerful foe and getting completely pummeled that you have to run way.

Finally, some strange stuff is still happening in the Arctic Circle, where we have Malina (Danika Yarosh) trying to control the storms. She’s clearly going to be a key in the matter, and her storm controlling abilities will be what our heroes need to save the day.

There are just so many storylines going on in Reborn that every week seems to just supply a tiny fragment of plot movement while haphazardly tying all the storylines together best it can. It’s quite literally a repeat of the worst element of the original series. While the original series did manage to somehow pull all the different characters and individual storylines together somehow, I’m not sure anyone has the patience to sit though another 10 episodes before they come to a point.

In fact, the biggest reveal of the episode centers around Miko and Ren and the discovery of yet another evo enemy, Harris, an evo who can instantly clone himself via cut off appendages like a plant. We learn that Miko herself might not even be real, but her sword definitely is. The sword itself belonged to none other than Hiro himself with it teasing a possible return of our favorite time traveler. Then again, it would have been a surprise to see Hiro again in what is clearly being written as a grand reveal except that NBC has been spoiling the fact that he’ll return in all their promos since the beginning.

Heroes Reborn - Season 1

“Under the Mask” is classic Heroes. It’s complicated, lacks any depth, and tries to fit so much into an hour that all of these plot lines really have no substance to them whatsoever.

Other Observations

  • How did Noah know to go to that warehouse? Did I fall asleep somewhere, which I probably did?
  • How will Miko and Ren get to America anyways? And by the time they get there, wouldn’t it have been a week later at this point?
  • Evo murderer turned reformed Luke predictably manifests new powers.
  • Joanne is still a murderous sociopath. I get she lost her child in Odessa, but so did a lot of other people. At least Sylar had a reason to kill people. She’s doing it more out of personal enjoyment.
  • I’m sorry, but Molly’s face in the chair is really terrible. I mean come on, what are you really trying to do?
  • E.P.I.C. Really? Did a 12 year old come up with that one?

By Kien Tran

Based in Dallas, Texas, Kien Tran is an avid television enthusiast. After spending hundreds of hours wasting away on a couch, he decided to actually do something creative with his hobby and created this very blog.

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