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Heroes Commentary 3x24 - I Am Sylar

The players are in place. The dice have been rolled. And Sylar has gone A-1 bonkers.

Ok, now not only are the previouslies having unknown parts of scenes, but full cut scenes with crucial plot info. Show, the previouslies are supposed to recap and remind both the regular audience and the casual viewer of important plot points that have ALREADY BEEN SHOWN, not insert new information. You’re telling me you didn’t have time for a 10-second scene two episodes ago when it was relevant? Particularly when that scene establishes something so crucial as oh, say, Sylar’s cover identity for this episode? Just saying. You shouldn’t have to resort to these stopgap measures to explain your backstory, show!

Hmm, Sylar has had shapeshifting for what… two days? Three at maximum? And it took him only that long to go from stone-cold-yet-desperate-for-approval badass to Norman Bates? Yeah, his mental balance was on a more slender thread than I thought.

(BTW, it makes me giggle that Gabriel Olds is playing Agent Taub, Sylar’s borrowed life for this episode. Olds and ZQ were in an episode of CSI: together, an episode called “Anatomy of a Lye.” Check it out sometime, Olds plays a douchebag lawyer and ZQ plays a chop shop mechanic!)

Interesting, Sylar’s original ability was to know how things work. Now he apparently can’t make his new power work. Remorse struggling to make itself known? Chronic ego-dump taking its toll? Or the fact that making your DNA do hopscotch fifteen times a day when you’ve already modified it a dozen times before by taking different abilities could be detrimental to your psychological and physical health? YOU decide!

Sylar reasserts his identity by SLICING HIS NAME INTO HIS FLESH!!!! Awesome! Though, you know, when Danko later talks about giving yourself an anchor when you spend your life as another person, I don’t think he meant it quite so… literally.

(As an aside, while I liked the content of Danko’s speech to Sylar about establishing an anchor and whatnot, it seemed an uncharacteristically nice of him. I was hoping Danko was trying to subtly push Sylar over the edge somehow so he could find a way to kill him, and trying to help him that way seemed very odd.)

Tom Miller, step right up and spin the Wheel of Minor Character Fortune! You could land on any of the following fates: Webcomic Fame, Bagged and Tagged by Danko, One of Claire’s Ex-boyfriends/Enemies/Underground Railroad Escapees, Forgotten by the Writers that You Exist, Former Primatech Employee/Founder, or Sylared. Due to the fact that you have an ability, I’m afraid four fifths of your wheel will be Sylared. Go ahead and take a spin and- Oh, look at that. Sylared. Sorry Tom, thanks for playing, better luck next time!

Heh, Sylar might be losing his mind, but he still manages to bring the funny by messing with Danko during the investigation at Tom’s apartment.

When Sylar was examining Danko’s watch and commenting on how it worked, I rather liked that. Him saying that intuitive aptitude was the only power that was truly his actually broke my heart a little. Despite all the fuckery that was going on in this episode, I saw a glimpse of the real Gabriel there. I think he might be starting to see that even being the most special, powerful person in the world might not matter if he can’t be himself. It doesn’t stop him from leaping into the deep end later, but there was just that one little quiet moment… It worked. It worked so well. Tiny, but perfect. Thanks, ZQ!

Ok then, so Sylar tries to find his anchor by taking a look into his mother’s possessions… At first, the conversation between him and Virginia was all well and good, him talking in his head, trying to have her justify what he’s doing. A little crazy, but not too much crazier than he has been. And then… wow. Oh. Wow. He’s shapeshifting into his mother and talking as her to himself after touching (and SNIFFING, ew) her blood-stained sweater. You have got to be shitting me.

Sylar has been Normaned! Not just the famous Norman “Psycho” Bates, but also Norman Osborn from Spider-Man. Though I will admit I think Willam Dafoe did a better job with his crazy mirror conversation between Norman and the Green Goblin than Sylar did with his mother. It’s just scarier to see the subtle shifts in the face to indicate the shift in personality than a full-on body shift. That and Zachary Quinto can’t match the inherent freakiness of Willam Dafoe’s face.

Man, it really bites that poor Micah, of everyone in the cast right now, is the only person who might understand about a Hero having a fractured personality. What is left of Sylar’s conscience must have recognized that, thank God. I would have been devastated if they had him kill Micah.

I am very disappointed in Danko’s soldiers. Micah is like what, fourteen? Those hunters shot an unarmed fourteen-year-old kid in cold blood? Dudes, remember the war crimes trials. Following orders is no excuse for committing atrocities. There were many men and women in the German Nazi party that were jailed for that reason after WWII. Think about that, would you?

Danko should have recognized something was up the minute Sylar said that talking to machines would have been overkill, and that’s why he didn’t take Rebel’s power. Overkill? Uh… no. Sylar is all about overkill.

The Hiro and Ando Show – The Crimson Arc Edition! Matt intelligently decides to get his kid as far away from Danko as possible, and even more intelligently tells Hiro and Ando to get out while they still can. Though why he doesn’t even more intelligently mention that perhaps they should get in contact with Peter or Mohinder or Rebel is a mystery. And, unintelligently, he still forgets he has an adopted daughter than can FIND ANYONE and might be really fucking useful in this situation. I’m not bitter about Molly’s continued absence. I’m not really. Well yes, yes I am. A little. Wait, a lot.

Hiro has a plan. Oh God. Hiro’s plans are almost as bad as Peter’s plans, though at least Hiro can make the world take a time out if he needs it to regroup. And Hiro’s brilliant plan is… get Ando captured! Uh… guys, maybe it would be a good idea to NOT alert the government to the fact that Ando has an ability. Just saying. You might need one of your group to be unfettered by- No? Ok, so just let him get tazered then.

(Though I was skeptical at first of Ando being able to share Hiro’s time stop, a quick mental review of Hiro’s past power usage makes me think he might be right. I think Hiro actually hasn’t been touching anyone when he stopped time in the past. And it was a very dirty trick to get Ando into a position to take four darts to the chest.)

Hiro’s grand plan was to get into commando gear and hitch a ride? Oh Danko, you clearly haven’t read the Evil Overlord List. The first rule is: My Legions of Terror will have helmets with clear plexiglass visors, not face-concealing ones. So, no black baklavas! And nobody on the team noticed Hiro was wearing glasses until they were in the truck and halfway to Building 26? Danko must have a shitty temp agency staffing his teams.

Wait, the commandos had the directions to Building 26 on their GPS? Don’t they WORK at Building 26? Isn’t it supposed to be top secret? Why in the name of all that’s holy would you have that information out in the open? Jeeminy Christmas, these guys deserve to get Crimson Arced. Good job Ando!

Hiro does less of good job in realizing that his powers only came back with the touch of Baby Matt. Since Baby Matt left, Hiro has found it progressively harder to stop time. So trying to stop time over all of Building 26 was mayhaps not such a good idea. Also, Ando does less of a good job in realizing this exact same thing. And in realizing that perhaps his power, you know, the one that SUPERCHARGES abilities? might be useful in this situation. I hope you two can come to this realization in a swift and timely manner!

Back in Sylar’s apartment, Micah has to witness Sylar talking to Virginia. Scary. As. Hell. I wouldn’t be able to sleep for days after seeing that. Luckily Sylar chivvies Micah out the door before his lucid period lapses. Thank God. Less lucky is the fact that Micah convinces Sylar he can save them all if he shifts into Nathan. Micah, you just doomed us all.

Apparently the guys who wrote the shapeshifting power in the first place didn’t consult with the writers for this episode, because now Sylar is spontaneously able to shift clothing as well. Didn’t Sylar make an ostentatious point of saying that the original shapeshifter had a closet full of different costumes? Yet in this episode he shifts between his own clothes and his mother’s dress, from his grubby sweatshirt to Nathan’s awesome suit. FIND SOME CONSISTANCY!!!!!!

Skeevily going through Nathan’s life in his office, Sylar makes his mom stroke his ego until he gets the balls to take on Nathan’s identity. While stroking a toothbrush. Ew. One, hard to look like you’re making a Very Important Decision by stroking your thumb down a toothbrush. Two, someone else’s toothbrush. EW!!!

Nathan, Nathan, Nathan, you dumbass. I know you’re trying to do something right for once, but when all your family warns you not to go alone, why the fudge do you… run off alone?! Doing things on your own hasn’t worked so well for the past few months, has it? I thought not. Thank goodness your brother has forgiven you enough to go after you.

Wait, Nathan, a senator, kept a loaded gun in his desk drawer? Uh… he can do that? Isn’t there some kind of thing that would, I dunno, BAN guns in governmental office buildings unless you’re a Secret Service agent or something? (And BTW, doesn’t Nathan have a Secret Service detail as a Senator? Haven’t they wondered where he’s been for the past few days? Just saying…)

Sylar gleefully launches into speeches about betrayal and privilege and how Nathan’s such a bastard. All while wearing Nathan’s face. The therapy bills for both of them will be enormous, I’m certain. Good thing Danko’s there to save them both from themselves by shooting Nathan and stabbing Sylar. Except now it doesn’t work. Oops. This could suck for everyone involved.

Sigh. Noah, sweetie, I generally acknowledge you as the most level-headed, even-handed, intelligent, and experienced person in the cast. When things go to shit, you can eventually pull out some kind of win. You are a wanted man for killing a government agent in cold blood. Your daughter and her grandmother are on the government capture/kill list. So, when confronted by a “routine” traffic stop (and why are you on any kind of major road in the first place, I don’t know), you slow down, stick your head out the window so the cop can get a good look at your face, and don’t bother to check behind you for the truck full of agents? Writers, stop making Noah stupid! He cannot possibly be that dumb!

Mohinder has been in the desert examining the Dharma Initiative Training Film frame-by-frame by lantern light. Honey, you’re going to go blind doing that-. Never mind, Danko’s commandos mysteriously figured out where you were. Again. You’ve got to be sick of getting tazered by now. But hey, if you can survive a lightning strike, please tell me you can shake off tazer bolts! Because that would be, you know, USEFUL in this situation.

Oh Matt, I love you so much when you’re talking with Janice. I really wasn’t into you two that much back in S1, but now she’s more confident in herself and more familiar with abilities, you now have a firm purpose and better control over yourself, and you have a son that you both love. I thought it was a smidge pushy to invite yourself along, but all things considered, probably the best in this situation. I think these two could be great together. She’s a smart lawyer who knows more than she lets on, he’s a telepathic detective with something to prove: Together, They Fight Crime!

And loved, just loved Matt being able to protect Janice and Baby Matt from the agents with his power. So freaking cool to see him standing there, the agents all around them, and yet the Parkman family is safe as houses. And, AND, Matt has remembered that he used to be a cop. He’s going to go back and help everyone make the world a better place. Matt, you’re now back on my Cool List.

Comments

( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
brighteyed_jill
Apr. 27th, 2009 05:44 pm (UTC)
Blee! You're funny funny people.

This may be my favorite thing ever:
Tom Miller, step right up and spin the Wheel of Minor Character Fortune! You could land on any of the following fates: Webcomic Fame, Bagged and Tagged by Danko, One of Claire’s Ex-boyfriends/Enemies/Underground Railroad Escapees, Forgotten by the Writers that You Exist, Former Primatech Employee/Founder, or Sylared. Due to the fact that you have an ability, I’m afraid four fifths of your wheel will be Sylared. Go ahead and take a spin and- Oh, look at that. Sylared. Sorry Tom, thanks for playing, better luck next time!


I also like this: Danko must have a shitty temp agency staffing his teams.

You do know how to bring the funny. Bags and bags of it. How can there be only one episode left?! Waaaah!
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )

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