Heroes: Eris Quod Sum

Heroes, NBC, Airs Mondays 9/8c

Episode: “Eris Quod Sum” (Season 3, Episode 7)

Synopsis: Trapped and terrified, Nathan (Adrian Pasdar) and Tracy (Ali Larter) fight for their lives against a much-changed, monstrous Suresh (Sendhil Ramamurthy) to free themselves, Maya (Dania Ramirez) and the doctor’s other “test subjects.” Elle (guest star Kristen Bell) returns, with a shock for Claire (Hayden Panettiere) and her family. Meanwhile, aware of Peter’s (Milo Ventimiglia) ruthless take down by her rivals at Pinehearst, Angela (Cristine Rose) reaches out to convince Sylar (Zachary Quinto) to save his brother. Since he won’t sign up with the Villains, Daphne (guest star Brea Grant) is ordered by her boss to go back and kill Matt (Greg Grunberg) — or be killed herself. While in awe of the African precog’s power, Hiro (Masi Oka) still questions Usutu’s (guest star Ntare Mwine) advice on how to best face his gathering opponents.

Review: Many of the comments we have received from our loyal Rejects have been negative in nature about the third season of Heroes. Whether it was from being soured by an uneventful second season or an overall opinion that the story was trying to hard to make lightning in a bottle, it seemed that the tide was turning in enthusiasm about as quickly as J. Jonah Jameson often turns on Peter Parker in Spider-Man comics. I, however, was one of the supporters of where the story was headed and have been somewhat of a champion of the Heroes cause. Well, I have finally started to see some cracks in the walls.

While I still like the majority of what Heroes has offered this season, there was a surprising bit to complain about in the “Eris Quod Sum” episode. Usually the writing is witty and finds a way to accentuate the humor in dark areas. But there were some pretty bad lines in this chapter. The difference between “Heroes” and other science fiction television stories has been the writers’ ability to create believable dialog for the characters in an otherwise unbelievable situation. When I hear Elle (Kristen Bell) tell Claire (Hayden Panettiere) a line like, “Okay, Dorothy. Let’s go meet the Wizard,” I couldn’t help but cringe a little bit. It’s not good to watch a show and feel like somebody hit you in the kidneys. Save that campy dialog for “Seventh Heaven.”

There also were more than a few moments where I found myself predicting what was going to happen before it did. This happened again with Elle and Claire’s story. Throughout the episode Elle displays her inability to control her electric superpower. As her and Claire boarded a plane the first thing I thought was, “Isn’t that a bad idea to have her go on a mode of transportation that she could short-circuit and end up killing hundreds of people?” Sure enough, Elle has a has a bigger power trip than Donald Trump and the plane nearly crashes. I understand Claire is “just” a high school cheerleader and Elle is somewhat bad at her job as an agent, but they’re two normally capable and intelligent characters in the show. Treat them that way. I’d like to not be able to guess every move.

“Eris Quod Sum” wasn’t without positives. The Pertrelli storyline, particularly the portion about Sylar (Zachary Quinto), is starting to lead towards a chance at redemption. The same can be said for Daphne (Brea Grant) in her turn away from the Pinehearst company. Both are strengths on the show and I sincerely hope that their valiant efforts don’t go unrewarded. I do at times find myself missing the uncompromising villain that Sylar once was, but good triumphs over evil, right? I mean even Darth Vader eventually walked away from the Dark Side, I am sure Sylar can do the same. And for all we know he may have to make the same self-sacrifice in order to save the world.

And I hate to continue to harp on it, as I have in other reviews, but I feel there was a pretty big misstep in turning Suresh (Sendhil Rumamurthy) into a greedy villain. Yes, power corrupts. I get that. But Suresh used to be a beacon of light for the other heroes lost out in the superpower sea. Now it seems as if he can’t see the forest for the trees as he tries to find a cure for superhero abilities. If you want to turn Suresh into a creepy version of Jeff Goldblum (which some may say is a redundant term to begin with) that’s okay. Just don’t try to get me to believe that he can works things out in any fashion with Maya (Dania Ramirez). Why did we not see her kick him in the groin and yell, “You made me into an F’ing art piece, you flaky skinned ass! Now go dunk yourself in a tub of lotion!” There have to be repercussions when you nearly kill people, right? I guess not with some people.

Heroes is nowhere near losing me as a viewer. I am a comic book fan and have found the show to be a breath of fresh air in a dense fog of trash on television. I mean we could be watching episodes of Fear Factor. There are clearly far worse alternatives. But the main issue with this episode, and maybe some others in the third season I suppose, is that there is a sense of connecting the dots too simply. I can believe that Daphne and Matt Parkman (Greg Grunberg) will fall in love. Both are in essence kindhearted people. But they’ve only briefly met twice, once where they are in a struggle with Knox (Jamie Hector), and are already kissing on the cheek and hugging? AND this is right after Matt finds out that his dad died? Show me some distance, show me some grief. Okay, now I sound like Martin Scorsese on a Mastercard commercial. I feel like the writers are trying to get to the climactic conclusion without any of the build. There is a reason they call it “rising action” after all. Or as some people might ask in a physical relationship, “where’s the foreplay?” At this point, the third season may feel to some like the sci-fi equivalent of a handjob in the backseat when all you were hoping for was the tender kiss leading up to it. There is beauty in anticipation and I hope that “Heroes” learns that lesson before their viewing partners fall asleep in bed.

Up Next Week: Hiro (Masi Oka) traces Arthur Pertrelli’s (Robert Forster) past to find out why he created Permatech. We learn of a time when Sylar could have turned his back on his horrific nature, and best of all, Eric Roberts makes a guest appearance! Best of the Best fans, start your engines!

For more coverage of your favorite shows, check out the Control Freaks Archive.

Did you watch this episode of Heroes? If so, what did you think?


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