Welcome, one and all, to week three of CBR's BEHIND THE ECLIPSE!! This is CBR’s exclusive weekly Heroes feature in which writers/producers Aron Coliete and Joe Pokaski reveal the answers to your most burning questions about the hit NBC series, and after last week's episode, how could you not have questions?
I Am Become Death, scripted by BEHIND THE ECLIPSE's own Aron Coliete (who celebrated a birthday yesterday — happy bbirthday, Aron!), exploded on television sets across the U.S. last week as our Heroes' journeys took place not only in the present, but also four years into the future.
In the present, Hiro Nakamura tried to reenact “Die Hard” in an effort to escape The Company, and dug up something he would have hoped to keep buried. Tracy's origins were revealed, and she found herself swept off her feet by Nathan Petrelli — literally. Mohinder's changes led to some anger management issues as his neighbor found out that he didn’t like Mohinder when he was angry.
In the future, Claire is shown to fear only one thing, and that definitely isn’t fear itself. Peter fixes a watch and breaks himself, unleashing a hunger that he may not be able to control. In the end, two Petrelli boys are killed; one after he had creates an army of super-powered humans, and another goes Ted after the death of Noah. Finally, a de-dreaded Daphne finds something she can't outrun as her husband watches from four years in the past.
The CBR oracles of Executive Producer Jonah Weiland and Staff Writer Remy Minnick sorted through the virtual treasure trove of questions sent in by you, and bring now only the finest offerings before the “Heroes” gods in this, another session of BEHIND THE ECLIPSE.
CBR: We've been getting a lot of the same sort of question lately. It usually has to do with Peter's intelligence -- or the lack thereof -- and his decision making. We even had one email entitled, Why is Peter so stupid?” Another asked, “Why didn't he just stop time when Knox was holding Noah hostage?” Another asked, “Why doesn't he just go back before future Peter shot Nathan and save him then?”
What is it that makes Peter tick, or sometimes not tick, as the case may be? Why is it that he doesn't use the best power in every situation? Do you discuss in the Writers Room that Peter’s not employing the right power at the right time may hinder the perceptions of the character? Do you ever wish you would have made him less powerful, and that you could teleport back to let yourself know what you were getting into?
Joe Pokaski & Aron Coleite: We wish that all the time. Peter acts out of emotion, and has to make his decision in the moment — as we all do. Sometimes that leads to poor choices. We saw a lot of questions about why Future Peter didn’t use telekinesis or time-freezing power to kill Nathan, but the whole point was to not expose people with abilities — so using an ability to kill Nathan would have the exact opposite effect. A lot of thought goes into all of these stories and episodes — debated to the point of puking. So, while people’s questions are valid — we’ve asked them ourselves and this is the answer the staff’s come up with — for better or worse.
Regular BTE participant Rachel G is back with a question about Mohinder:
“Most of the Heroes’ powers are connected to something in their lives, i.e. Peter is empathic and a hospice nurse, and Parkman is a cop who can hear people’s thoughts. Does Mohinder's new ability have anything to do with the recurring theme of the cockroach? He has mentioned them in the past as being ‘evolved’ or does this ability have some other origin?”
It is connected to Suresh’s life. Suresh rushed to devise the formula. He never fully tested it, but he was so jealous of people with powers — he was so sick of being abused — that he injected himself out of spite. And now he’s suffering for that mistake.
Siv starts out with a request, then moves on to his question:
“In a future ‘future episode’ like ‘Five Years Gone,’ is there a chance we can see the adult version of Micah and/or Molly? I mean, it would be awesome to see these kids who have powerful abilities as grown up and using them.”
We’ll keep it mind, but this might be the last future episode you see for some time.
“Will we ever see Matt's child again? or Janice for that matter? They seem to have fallen off the face of the earth. If Maury has powers, his son Matt has powers, then is it safe to say that the grandson will have powers too?”
Never safe with us. Matt still believes his son with Janice is not his own. But, in “Five Years Gone,” Matt does believe the Baby is his. So… who knows what the future of Janice’s child is.
“If Sylar was starting with a clean slate (save for telekinesis) at the start of Vol. 3, how does he suddenly have Isaac's and Ted's abilities again four years in the future?”
Uhhhm, not so suddenly, four years in the future — that’s four years of power gatherin’ — now the question you’ve gotta ask yourself is how did Sylar get those powers? Did he kill the fourth Penguin?
“I was wondering how Daphne knew when Hiro was going to open the safe? Is there someone we're unaware of or is Mrs. Petrelli not on the level when she tells Hiro he must stop the formula being used, as she could've dreamed when Hiro would open the safe?”
She could’ve, but, she didn’t. You were right the first time. There is someone we’re unaware of. Someone really powerful who knew Hiro was gonna open that safe and sent Daphne to go get the formula. We touch on it a little in a webcomic on NBC.com.
Dan Kempner asked:
“On last week’s episode, we saw Daphne wearing a pin that Claire was wearing as well, and if I'm not mistaken, it's the Pinehearst Research. So Knox, Daphne, The Haitian and Claire all work for them - correct? Who's their boss? And why is the video on their website narrated by Ali Larter?”
All good questions. Very, very good questions. What’re you doing this Monday night?
Dan, you’re on to something. Dan’s got more questions:
“We saw The German on tonight episode, in a picture with the doctor and Barbara. Does that mean we're going to see him again? He's a great character and a wonderful actor.”
Is this written by Ken Lally? The German? Yes. You’re a great actor! You might just be coming back — but it’s hard to return from a hole in the chest.
Eric Luong wrote in with this:
“It was suggested at the end of ‘I Am Become Death’ that Matt's totem is a turtle. If this is the case, was the turtle deliberately chosen to contrast with Daphne's speed?”
Tortoise and the Hare? Slow and speedy? You really think we’re that clever?
Longshot3 wants to know:
“In response to last week's question about revealing Kaito's powers, I would like to ask if his revelation to Ando of what his power is in the deleted scene from the Season 2 DVD is considered official. Or should we assume that anything that happens in a deleted scene never did officially happen or what?”
Good question. Let the debate begin! What do you guys think? Official or unofficial? We will tell you this — when we break episodes, we do it not knowing what’s been cut from episodes because of the timing of writing, production and editing. So, weigh in Longshot, Dazzler, Mojo — What say you?
Andrew and the HMP Crew asked:
“Did/will we ever get a definitive answer as to how Nathan was revived back in the premiere? Theories run from Adam’s blood, to Linderman’s divine intervention, to future Peter doing it by accident using a Linderman like power.”
Nathan believes he was saved by God. We’re sticking with that.
“Also, you mentioned Isaac's father last week as another company founder. Was he off'd by Adam during his rampage, or was he in on it as Maury was?”
I don’t believe he is on the list of the deceased. I believe there were a couple people left on Adam’s list that he didn’t get to.
Gerard “Gerry” Shannon asked:
“Does ‘the one fundamental problem’ you refer to last week in each future timeline cover every one thus far? The New York explosion, the virus, the everyone-has-powers future? Does this explain how some things might be consistent, (such as Peter being scarred and labeled a terrorist, Nathan is president)? Or do you refer to only the future timeline seen this season?”
We were referring to only this future timeline, but there does seem to be constants in every future. Interesting note Gerry. Very interesting.
Good sleuthing, Gerry.
John wants some history:
“Will we ever find out what Angela did for the Haitian to make him so loyal to her?”
Not entirely in the plans. But, there is more on the Haitian in episodes 10 and 11. We’ll get to know a little about his family and his other obligations.
“After visiting the future, one of the things I'm most wanting follow-through on is the Parkman-Millbrook family: What made Matt say ‘I used to be a cop?’ Why is it ‘used to?’ What made him stop? And what are the odds that he has a superpowered daughter in his future (besides, of course, Molly)? And most importantly: why is Matt still living in Chandra Suresh's apartment? Do they keep a lot of Off! around in case Mohinder decides he wants it back?”
Suresh comes over to borrow sugar. Hee hee, get it — sugar! (Yeah. Baby. Nailed that one.) Matt’s become Mr. Mom in this future — preferring to stay home with the kids. And why they’re still in the same apartment — do you know how much New York apartments cost?
Rent can only get worse in the future. KCow continues:
“Who's the younger brother, Peter or Sylar? Are we permitted to guess, from the fact that they seem pretty close in age and the similarities in their powers, that they might be twins?”
You’re absolutely right. You are permitted to guess.
Our good buddy Landman asked:
“HRG told the Haitian that Sylar would only be his partner until he finds Sylar's weakness. I'm wondering if he found his weakness to be love and having a child to care for? Since Sylar named his son after HRG, it seems there is a connection. (If only this worked as well with Voldemort.)”
I always thought Voldemort was gonna turn out to be Harry’s dad. I guess there’s just too much Star Wars in me. The other theory that I’ve loved is that Noah is in fact HRG regressed into childhood. Hmmmmmm.
Kyle Kopeinig asked:
“Peter has absorbed many powers that he hasn't utilized so far (the most famous cases being Eden's persuasion and Sylar's other abilities), this was due to the fact he had to know he possessed the power before he could use it. With Sylar's ability, can Peter now study his own mind and unlock all these dormant abilities?”
Yes. But. With the Hunger — Peter might be too busy killing people instead of contemplating his navel.
Jeff checked in with a trifecta this week:
1. “If Hiro can't teleport out of Level 5, and Peter just teleported in, isn't he trapped too, now?
Yes. But not in the way you think.
2. “Wasn't Mr. Muggles killed in the explosion in Costa Verde?! You said nothing would happen to Mr. Muggles!” YEAH! WHAT’S UP WITH THAT?
How do you know that Claire didn’t use her blood to revive Muggles from the ashes? Maybe it’s in the deleted scenes from Season 3. But, probably not. Instead — you can enjoy the deleted scene from Episode 301 — when Sylar TK’s Mr. Muggles out of a doggy door. Hilarious! And for those of you who want to set the wayback machine to the pilot — didn’t Mr. Muggles drink up some of her blood?
Wait, did we just get an exclusive? Does Mr. Muggles share Claire’s power? Woah!
3. “A couple weeks ago, HRG said he was going to find Sylar's weakness and kill him. Wasn't Sylar's weakness standing right next to HRG when he said that? If the Haitian can disable Peter's ability to heal, he should be able to disable Sylar, too, right?”
Obviously not. Or else — he’d have done that. Right? He’s a pretty smart guy who generally has a comprehensive plan.
Josh Parker asked:
“I had been looking forward to this future episode since I first heard about the rumors of a Sylar being a family man just four years removed from being a homicidal maniac. However, there were some things that were floating around the internet we did not find out about. First of all, there was a lot of talk about Sylar's baby mama being someone that fans knew and would be surprised to find out was shacking up with Sylar. Also, Zachary Quinto had said that Sylar's son, Noah, is ‘gifted.’ However, neither of these things were seen in this past episode (unless I missed something). So are these questions going to be revealed later? Were these ideas scrapped? Or do I just need to stop believing what I read on the Internet?”
Fiirst of all. No. Don’t Stop Believin’, Josh Parker. Alien Autopsies are real. And so are the girls shooting all those impossible basketball shots. Second of all, there’s gonna be a revelation about the baby, mama — but it’s not what you think. And third of all, Noah’s ability was revealed. I believe the ability was cuteness.
Will wants the return of an old friend:
“Is there any chance that we will see Isaac again? Even in flashbacks? He was one of the coolest and most intriguing characters on the show. His loft is still being used as a set on the show, so that must have some significance, right?”
We’ve been trying to find ways of bringing Mr. Mendez back — but Santiago went out and made himself a superstar — with plays and movies that made the reality of reconciling Santiago’s schedules and our production schedules tough. So, keep watching. You never know.
Siv Chan is going back in history:
“Previously, in a Q&A from BEHIND THE ECLIPSE, you've mentioned something about how Nathan was pitched and for us to give you a nudge sometime in the future. When one of the authors nudged you, you said not now. So here is my second nudge to you guys about how Nathan was pitched. If you need a refresher to the first nudge, it was mentioned in the Q&A of season 2 for the ‘The Line’ episode.”
Consider us nudged (wash your hands). The original pitch (or rather one of the earlier ones) is that Nathan found out why he could fly. Seems he was turning into a cockroach. But then we thought that sort of thing might be silly.
Jason B wants to now your organizational secrets:
“With all the time travel and characters with multiple powers and stuff, have you considered designating or hiring a person to keep track of story continuity? For example, is there a big chart in the writer's room with a list of what powers Peter has, which he knows about, etc.?”
The chart’s name is Oliver Grigsby. And he’s the man!
“Will we find out more about how Angela's power works or the history of it. I mean, I was totally fascinated with her line, ‘Every future I've ever seen you created.’ - or something like that, to Future Peter. Has Angela been dreaming of Peter killing Nathan much of her life? It would say a lot about season 1, that's for sure. And I'm sure you don't have time this volume, but an origins story about Angela would be fascinating.”
Paul Penna wrote in:
“Writing from the UK here and I just watched 'One of Us, One of Them' on BBC Three. I was pleasantly surprised to see Bridget Bailey make an appearance -- a character who was introduced on the BBC website. Of course she died moments later, but that's ‘Heroes’ for you. Why was the decision made to use Bridget? Will we see Sylar making use of her power? Will it be explored either on TV or in the graphic novels how she went from a pen pal of Mohinder at the end of Season 1 planning to visit New York to an agent of the Company in Season 3 that Angela is willing to feed to Sylar? And why does Angela choose to kill Bridget?”
We just wanted to let everyone in the UK know how much we loved you — and the BBC Three — by treating the “Heroes” mythology you created the same way we treat ours, lopping off their skulls! We can only hope Bridget and Hana Gitelman are commiserating somewhere pleasant.
“Also, what're your thoughts and reactions to the UK getting the rights to (almost) simultaneous broadcast? Was this part of your motivation for using Bridget?”
We love it! The UK fans have been amazing. We heard the Eclipse convention went over well (and assume our invitations got lost in the mail) The Bafta People honored us last year with Best International Programme. And “Heroes Unmasked” and the BBC 7 Podcast are some of our favourite things to check out from week to week. The whole revolutionary war aside, we still feel a very strong connection to our brothers from another Queen Mother.
“Friends of mine are of the mind that Sylar's son Noah is actually Noah Bennet via wacky de-aging high jinks -- what do you guys think?”
De aging? That’s really complicated. I think you’re over-thinking. Wouldn’t it be simpler if the boy somehow went back in time and was forced to grow up in the ‘60s? To grow to become the man we know as H.R.G.? (For us, sometimes Occams razor is one of those Gillette four-blade dealies)
David Jackson asked:
“Just a general question: I seem to remember hearing that we were going to see more of the ‘old team.’ With Adam back in play, will there be an episode coming up that gives us a detailed flashback to the founding of the Company/Group of Twelve?”
We’d love to do that episode. Love! And maybe if our friends at “Life on Mars” will let us use their ‘70s sets and wardrobes, we might be able to do it.
Carl Rood wants to know:
“Could Linderman have been right all along? It appears that every time the heroes ‘save’ the future, a worse one arises. First we had several million dead in New York, then we had several billion dead due to the Shanti Virus, and now it appears as though the entire planet is destined to blow up. Should everyone have just left well enough alone and let Peter destroy New York?”
Yes. Linderman was right. Put it on t-shirts!
Thanks as always to Aron Coleite and Joe Pokaski. Tune in to NBC tonight for the latest Heroes episode, Angels and Monsters, and then e-mail your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org for the chance at seeing your query answered right here in BEHIND THE ECLIPSE. Please make sure to get in all your questions in by 6:00 PM Pacific time on Thursday October 16, 2008 to be taken under consideration for next week's edition.