Plot

As with the other sections of this document, we’re mainly concerned with Season 2/Volume 2 of Heroes. However, if you wish you bring up some elements of Season 1 that continue into or inform elements of S2/V2, that’s perfectly acceptable.

This section will deal with the concerns and criticisms we have with the Plot of Season 2/Volume 2. Plot elements include situations, setting, twists, reversals, reveals, etc. Examples: Peter in Ireland, Hiro in Feudal Japan, the plots surrounding The Company.

Obviously you can’t completely separate plot from character. If you’re not sure if an issue is more plot or character, post to the comments in both sections and the editors will make a call.

How this works

In the comments, post whatever you have to say about the plot elements of Heroes that concern/anger you. You can touch on the issues Tim Kring mentioned in this EW interview, but put more emphasis on things he didn’t mention.

If you’ve come across a brilliant blog post that you feel encapsulates your exact feelings on a plot element, please provide a quote and a link back to the post itself.

We also encourage contributors to comment on each other’s offerings, clarifying and questioning the opinions offered. If you feel strongly about a comment or post, please tell us why.

Things to keep in mind when formulating your critique:

  • The more specific you are, the better.  Reference episodes/chapters, if you can/need to.
  • Provide explanations or links defining terms or concepts Kring and the other writers may not know about/fully grasp.
  • Mention areas where the show is doing something right in order to highlight ways they can fix what they’re doing wrong.

Rules

  1. Anyone may participate in this collaboration. The idea is to bring in the opinions and views of a diverse swath of Heroes fans.
  2. Your first comment will be moderated, but once it’s approved all subsequent comments should appear right away. To ensure this, please use the same email address each time. You don’t have to leave a real email address, but only the blog administrator can see it if you do.
  3. If you quote from another website or blog, please provide a link as reference. If the commentary you’re providing is your own, please indicate such. Provide a URL only if you don’t mind us linking back to it in the “Contributors” section. It will also help if people use names or handles they go by elsewhere on the web.
  4. The point of this document is to provide civil and constructive criticism of Heroes, not to bash Tim Kring, the writers, the actors, or NBC. Therefore, try to stay on topic and don’t resort to ad hominem attacks of fellow fans/collaborators or anyone involved with the show. Heated discussion is okay, disagreements may arise, just don’t be a jerk.
  5. As we will be discussing the touchy subjects of Race and Gender in some parts, it would help us all if commenters/collaborators familiarized themselves with the articles listed here. Particularly the “How to Suppress…” and “How not to be insane…” articles.
  6. Trolls and other people who cannot follow the rules will be moderated without warning and banned if the disagreeable behavior persists.
  7. Keep comments and contributions on topic.

10 Responses

  1. In the EW interview, Kring says:

    THE WORLD-SAVING STAKES SHOULD HAVE BEEN ESTABLISHED SOONER The premonition of nuclear apocalypse created a larger context that unified every story line last season. Kring now sees that Volume 2 (the first 11 episodes of season 2) would have been better served if Peter’s vision of viral Armageddon had appeared in the season premiere rather than episode 7. ”We took too long to get to the big-picture story,” he says.

    I disagree. I think the “end of the world” stakes are too close to what we had in Season 1. It’s going to get very tiring if, in every season/volume we replay this scenario over and over again. Someone jumps to the future, sees the world (conveniently represented by New York) devastated, comes back to present and has to warn people/stop the devastation from happening. Why? You did it once and, truthfully, it didn’t pay off well in the end. Instead of using the same plot to unify the story every season, come up with different, better ways to unify it.

  2. Comments on the Claire/West love storyline:

    Show, I cannot believe you are making me hate the Claire arc. That is just wrong! But seriously! “Jump down the Hollywood sign as proof that you trust me, despite the fact that, oh, you feel all the pain even though you heal?” And that entire “look! I made you jump off and now I romantically swoop in to save you” didn’t so much make me swoon as gag and yell at the TV. Claire! Get away from him! He is skanky and gross and pressures you to go out with him after you’ve turned him down several times. Ugh. I hate this arc SO MUCH.

    http://oyceter.livejournal.com/651898.html

  3. From:
    http://vectoreditors.wordpress.com/2007/11/19/catching-up/

    But the rest seems to assume that the root problem is not giving the audience what it wants, rather than executing the writers’ vision badly. Case in point: saying that Monica, Maya and Alejandro “shouldn’t have been introduced in separate storylines that felt unnattached to the show”. Yes, they should have been; that’s one of the things that will help to differentiate Heroes, to give it scope and a sense that there’s more to the world than just New York. The flaw is not introducing separate storylines, but introducing separate storylines that the audience didn’t connect with. (Although personally speaking, I thought they were strong.) The same goes for Kring’s comments about pacing: I don’t care whether Heroes tells stories about people discovering their powers or whether it sticks with the people we know. I’d be happy if they dumped the whole cast at the end of a season and started with a clean slate the following year — as long as the stories being told are interesting. (In point of fact, I think Peter and Sylar have both outstayed their welcome; they were both so intimately tied to the season one story arc that they can’t help feeling like spare wheels now.) I do agree with Kring about one thing — no romance — but that’s only because so many shows do revolve around romance that it’s refreshing when one doesn’t.

  4. Okay look.

    At the end of the first season, you introduced Molly, who has a new superpower. That’s cool. She can find people. That’s cool. But she doesn’t want to look at one guy, because when she looks at him, *he’s looking back.*

    That’s *awesome.* It’s *creepy.*

    But it turns out he’s not really very scary. He’s just kind of mean. And he’s Matt’s dad. And he has the same power as Matt. And he’s gone by the next episode.

    You ruined the awesome guy. OH WELL.

    No. Please, if you introduce awesome villains, keep them awesome. Don’t keep trying to one-up yourself. Yes, it’s cool to raise the stakes sometimes, but if every damn episode has to completely change everything that’s happened up to that point, you’re going to end up like Lost.

  5. Keeping fan favorites around only because they’re fan favorites was a big mistake for season two. Peter (I can hear the fans squealing now) Petrelli should have died when he blew up over NYC. Sylar should have died when Hiro butched up and ran him through with The Sword.

    But these actors/characters were too popular, so they lived. But they were also far too powerful to make for easy plots.

    So Peter got his memory erased and was shunted off to Ireland for a largely meaningless set of adventures while he rediscovered his identity and powers. Had that been how we FIRST met Peter, it might have been interesting. Who is this guy? How and why does he have this grab-bag of amazing powers? But as it was presented to us, we got to watch him learn–again–things we already knew.

    Sylar too is too powerful to be easily written into a plot that doesn’t involve him serial killing his way through the Heroes population–but, again, we’ve already seen that story and it came to a conclusion (or should have) last season. So he gets his powers taken away and gets to join the Wonder Twins on their hamster wheel of a plot.

    No, much as some fans would have screamed, we’d have been better off if they’d had the nerve to kill off the characters whose stories were done.

  6. [...] can you help Save Heroes? Easy. Just give your opinion on the Plot and Characters or Race and Gender issues in the show. We’re inviting all fans to contribute to a [...]

  7. Why do we have to keep saving the world? What about each characters individual world? Niki’s ‘world’ is her family. Matt and Mohinder’s ‘world’ is Molly. It goes on and on and on. There are plenty of smaller ‘worlds’ that could be saved…or not. What’s going to happen when the world is relatively safe? Will the characters come together to try and help humanity? Will any of them be found out? Will they try to go back to their own lives? Can we follow them for a while? I for one, don’t need to have everyone come together to save the world in order to enjoy the show.
    I agree that Sylar and Peter should have died – or at least stayed gone for a longer time. I would have missed them, but it would have opened up room for so much more character development, especially of the newer characters.
    Please, please, please let us not keep saving the world. We did that already, remember?

  8. Well, technically, we didn’t. They saved NYC from destruction. NYC =/= the world, even if the Petrellis might think so.

    But the point is valid nonetheless, because once you’ve saved the world what do you do for an encore? Save it again? And again?

    They’ve got some strong characters on this show. Not every plotline has to feed into a threat to the world. The whole Sylar storyline from season one could have been sufficient–a supervillain who is killing off supers, and getting more powerful with every success. You’ve got your rising stakes right there. It keepts ratcheting up until he faces off with the titular Heroes in NYC for all the marbles.

    Save the world-saving for a later season, or even a series finale (assuming, of course, you know when the end is coming).

  9. I don’t view the current plot arc as terrible by any means. The “sins of the fathers” and legacy of the Elder Heroes has been good. Mohinder, Matt and Bennett have been well serviced by the story arcs, and the introduction of Adam was ultimately quite a good twist.

    The main problem is that the plot proceeded too slowly, dragging out the action and leaving character suspended in a cliff hanger for weeks. I’d prefer more compact and fast moving stories, where I can see every important character almost every week for installments and moving things along.

    The plots that were a problem, as widely commented, were the re-treated with Claire at high school again, the lengths of Hiro in Japan, and Peter’s wholly unnecessary Ireland adventure.

    One thing I do like is having new batches of characters interact much more than they did in the first season. It keeps things interesting, and lets the characters play off each other in intriguing ways. Nathan and Matt, Mohinder and Nikki, Matt and Mohinder.

    Also, Bob and his ambiguous role in the whole saga has been quite well done. The character manages this sort of banal, bureaucratic evil that’s also quite a nice touch.

    It does seem at times that characters have been made too powerful to be credible, and this is an issue I hope the show can address. So far, the answer has largely been to depower them, have them act stupid, or have other characters foolishly not draw on them. I’m thinking primarily Sylar and Peter, but also Hiro, Molly and potentially Matt if he keeps his knew ‘do what I saw’ attribute.

  10. Bob is cool and ambiguously evil, which I thoroughly approve of. What I keep wondering is why Peter is in this show at all. By this point, he’s effectively a god, and that’s *always* a problem in a story. The only reason he’s not out there being godlike is that first he had amnesia and now he’s too dumb to figure anything out (this may just be a return to his previous state).

    I like Ando’s character, but if his only purpose for existence is so that Hiro has someone to explain things to every so often, he shouldn’t be on the show. Have him do something or have an effect, or have him go away.

    As far as the series goes overall, I’m pretty damned tired of “We’re going to save the world by SLAUGHTERING MILLIONS OF PEOPLE!” as a reason for people to be evil while still seeming like maybe they’re a little bit good. It’s why I like Sylar: he’s just plain power-hungry. The idea that there are all these people who genuinely believe that killing a whole bunch o’ folks is the way to save the world is seriously stretching my credulity, and I hope that for season three, we have something else. I get that they’re probably trying to make it more than the standard “Evil guy plots to take over the world because, dangit, he’s evil,” but could we at least have some means of accomplishing this other than burninating the countryside and/or the peasants?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

%d bloggers like this: