Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Heroic Effort

There were three new series I was really looking forward to this season: ABC's "The Nine" and NBC's "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip" and "Heroes."

I've already reviewed "Studio 60," which is TV's best new show, and ABC has neglected to send me any press materials whatsoever despite the very nice e-mail I sent them (beware, I have a long memory, ABC).

That leaves "Heroes," which I viewed over the weekend. The result? Not quite as good as I expected, but not bad, either.

"Heroes" follows several people around the planet, all of whom seem to be developing unique powers and abilities. A high school cheerleader in Texas (Hayden Panettiere) is seemingly invulnerable to all forms of harm, a fact which she documents on video camera with repeated suicide attempts; a Vegas stripper (Ali Larter) talks to herself in reflective surfaces and seems to possess telekinetic abilities; a nurse (Milo Ventimiglia) has visions that he can fly, and tries to convince his politician brother (Adrian Padsar); a drug-addicted artist (Santiago Cabrera) paints visions of the future; a Tokyo programmer (Masi Oka) can bend the space-time continuum to his will and teleport himself anywhere.

Meanwhile, an Indian professor (Sendhil Ramamurthy) is tracking the phenomenon of people with super abilities when he learns his father may have been murdered for similar work.

"Heroes" carried a rather darker tone to it than I thought it would, with the exception of Hiro, the Japanese programmer. He's sort of the ultimate comic book geek and is a lot of fun.

The pacing of "Heroes" is a little slower than I would have liked, but the producers are taking their time in building up the background of the characters. The pilot does contain two clever twists at the end, and we slowly see the connections between the characters.

"Heroes" has been compared to both "X-Men" and "The 4400" in terms of theme. It's similar in the sense that everyone has a different power and struggles to use it correctly. But "X-Men" was about using powers correctly and working within a group. "The 4400" is a little closer comparison, in that both shows talk of an impending disaster that only the super-people can stop. "The 4400," however, is told mostly from the point of view of the Federal agents assigned to police these beings. "Heroes" is only from perspective of the people directly involved with having powers.

The pilot of "Heroes" was a bit underwhelming, but the series shows tremendous potential and is worth a second look.

1 comment:

Zodin2008 said...

I am looking forward to trying "Heroes" out and as a fan of both "X-Men" and "The 4400", those comparisons make me look forward to trying it even more.