Previously on Heroes
: HRG killed his former mentor and got a look at the whole Isaac painting series, Claire and West pulled the most awful prank ever, Mohinder and Niki (Jessica?) teamed up, Bob sent Monica off with some new toys, Parkman and Nathan were off-screen, licking their wounds from their run-in with Papa Parkman (aka the Nightmare Man), Hiro fractured the time/space continuum by kissing Yaeko and getting brained by Kensei, and Peter and Caitlin did the time warp into the future to an evacuated New York City suffering from a Big Bad Biohazard.
In tonight's episode, lots of stuff actually happens! We see several of Isaac's paintings come to life, Matt confronts Maury, West recognizes HRG, Claire gets a role in the main plot, Hiro returns to the present, and we learn who Adam Monroe is (hint: it's who you most suspect). It's a shame that, if the writers' strike lasts a long time, there could only be four more episodes of Heroes
HRG (Jack Coleman
) is looking over the Isaac Mendez series of paintings, and he calls Mohinder (Sendhil Ramamurthy
) to ask if he has a Company gun, because that's exactly what he sees in one of the paintings. Mohinder is called away by his new partner, Niki (Ali Larter
), while HRG burns the paintings after having taken pictures of them.
Back at Company headquarters, Bob has evacuated the building. He, Mohinder and Niki meet up with Parkman (Greg Grunberg
) and Nathan (Adrian Pasdar
), who warn of the Nightmare Man's plot to kill Bob next. This is one cool and eclectic quintet of characters. Bob lays out a plan for them to kill Maury Parkman, and he orders Mohinder to inject the Nightmare Man with the virus to take away his powers. Distracting Papa Parkman falls to Matt, because he has the same powers as his father. Parkman gets all teary-eyed at comatose Molly's bedside, and his love causes her to have some brain activity.
Mohinder and Niki have a discussion about morality, and when he leaves, she sees the ghost of D.L., who claims she'll kill a whole lot of people. When she leaves, the Nightmare Man steps out from a door. Meanwhile, Nathan is looking through the files and going over some other names. We get the usuals, then he throws in someone named Pratt and then Adam Monroe. Bob gives us the lowdown: Adam got them all together and wanted to save the world, but the power went to his head and he began to think of himself as a god. Adam wanted to kill a lot of people, and he's the mastermind behind the killings, he just uses Maury Parkman as his weapon. We also learn that Linderman was one of his disciples. Nathan doesn't much care, until Bob peaks his interest by saying Peter is still alive. Bob shows him video of Peter in the Company facility three months ago, and says his last known location was Cork, Ireland.
The Nightmare Man shows Niki some more D.L., then shows her Bob shooting him, so now she's all angry, knocking out Mohinder and going after Bob. Niki is knocking down walls to get at him. Nathan tries to talk some sense into her, and by invoking Micah, he gets her to inject herself with the Shanti Virus. Mohinder tries to cure her with his blood, but it's a new strain immune from that cure. He tells Bob, who lets him know there is one possible solution, namely a girl who can regenerate named Claire Bennet. Mohinder doesn't think HRG will let them take her, so Bob suggests the possibility of killing him. Mohinder blabs about his alliance with HRG to take down the Company because he's in a morally gray area.
Matt gets pulled into Molly's nightmare place, and Matt uses his own powers to bring Maury into it with them. They have it out about all Matt's daddy issues, and it's actually really nice to see Grunberg get a chance to do some acting. Matt triumphs, and walks out of their old apartment while Maury is trapped in his own personal nightmare. Back in the real world., Molly is awoken from her coma.
In the future, Peter (Milo Ventimiglia
) and Caitlin are still confused by what's happening when people in Hazmat suits rush in and ask if they have any symptoms of the virus, then order the duo into decontamination. The two get sprayed down, and wet, shirtless Peter makes his long-awaited return. I suspect Ventimiglia worked out a lot over the summer break after producers told him, "So yeah, we need to get that young female demographic, so you'll be taking your shirt off for half of next season." Some Homeland Security guy gives Peter the lowdown: he was presumed dead, and the Shanti Virus has killed 93 percent of the population. The man shows him some dead bodies, and we get a tableau of one of the Mendez paintings.
The man introduces Peter to a woman he doesn't recognize, but we know it's Angela Petrelli, his mother. She talks about his powers and how he's the greatest hero, the only one who can save them all. She also lets us know Nathan died in the first virus outbreak. Peter has some crazy flashbacks and finally remembers who he is and that this woman is his mother. As they prepare to leave, Peter sees Caitlin and freaks out. She's taken away, and he teleports back to present-day Montreal, with Caitlin stuck in the future.
In the past, Kensei (David Anders
) is dowsing Hiro (Masi Oka
) in opium so he can't teleport. He then reveals what price he received from White Beard: half the country and Yaeko as his bride. He vows to change history, but Hiro already did that with The Kiss. Yaeko breaks free, and after slapping the opium out of Hiro, he teleports them away. But Hiro wants to go back to stop White Beard, because he still believes Kensei is good at heart. That's not quite true, because Kensei and Hiro engage in the painting sword fight. Just as everything is about to go kaboom, Hiro stops and asks Kensei to teleport with him. Kensei refuses, vowing to destroy everything Hiro loves. Hiro teleports and the camp explodes. Gee, might Hiro love...his father? Everyone who called Kensei as Kaito's killer gets a gold star.
White Beard's army is destroyed, and Yaeko calls Hiro the real Kensei. Except for that final story, where Kensei cuts out his own heart. Hiro gets in one last kiss before finally, FINALLY teleporting back to the present. He gets back to Ando (James Kyson Lee
), and everyone's favorite sidekick is happy as a clam to have his old buddy back. After reminiscing about stopping the bomb, Hiro asks about his dad. Awkward! Ando gives him the bad news.
West shows up unannounced to bring Claire (Hayden Panettiere
) waffles for breakfast. He shows her a clipping from the newspaper about them, and Claire freaks out, because she's stupid. She showed her powers to a drunk cheerleader who then told her story to the cops. Did she really think this was a secret? The two go upstairs to make out, and when they go downstairs, West sees HRG and recognizes him as his abductor. Claire comes clean, but he thinks it was a trap. HRG sees the newspaper article and demands they move because Claire exposed them, but she refuses.
In the final scene, Peter gets a visit from Adam Monroe. Only it looks exactly like...KENSEI! That was...kind of predictable, but still totally awesome.
On the next Heroes
: we travel back to fill in those four months between the end of season 1 and the start of season 2. And oh yeah, Veronica Mars returns!
-John Kubicek, BuddyTV Senior Writer
(Image courtesy of NBC)