In this episode of Heroes, Samuel welcomes Sylar to "the family" by leading him on a journey of self-discovery that Samuel hopes will return Sylar to his killing ways. Meanwhile, Peter sets out with HRG to find someone who can heal Hiro's brain tumor. And while Peter's away, Hiro puts on a magic show to help Emma see the brighter side of her ability.
The Circle of Life
When Hiro confesses that the destiny of his cosmic bucket list must have brought him to right a wrong in Peter's life, Peter thinks it's exactly the opposite. Peter vows to find someone who can heal Hiro, so he steals Hiro's power of teleportation and pops in HRG's bathroom. ("It's been a long time since I teleported," Peter quips.) HRG exposits that Claire's blood won't save Hiro, but he remembers a kid, Jeremy Greer, who the Company once tested and who was healing near-dead insects. Perfect!
Peter and HRG teleport to Jeremy's house, but it's not a very lively (get it?) place. All the shrubs are brown and the place smells like death. Inside, the guys find out why: the corpses of Jeremy's parents are stinking up the place. HRG exposits that Jeremy's ability isn't only healing, but full control of the circle of life. Somewhere along the way, Jeremy's power turned him into a killing machine. And even though his hands are deadly weapons, Jeremy decides to use another deadly force to scare of the intruders: a shotgun.
HRG tells Jeremy he's there to help, and insists that they've met before. (The Company wiped the kid's brain after their tests were done.) Jeremy laments what his life has become, but just when HRG has calmed him down, Peter teleports in and a shot is fired. Peter freezes time, but realizes he's frozen it moments after the bullet has pierced his chest. He falls to the ground, bleeding out, and HRG begs Jeremy to save him. Jeremy insists he will kill Peter, but HRG notes that even though he's touching Jeremy, he's not dying. Now in control of his power, Jeremy revives Peter, who takes Jeremy's healing power and heads to the airport to get back to Hiro. HRG decides that he needs to get back to work helping those with abilities, and apologizes for failing Jeremy the first time around.
Building a Better Sylar
"What is a man without a mind?" Samuel muses in voiceover. A broken vessel? Clearly, Samuel is a man who believes we all have a compass that guides us, and he is more than a little dismayed that the Sylar's is broken. Indeed, the Sylar that Samuel thought he was bringing into the family doesn't exist anymore, at least not outwardly. The name Nathan still is the first in Sylar's mind, and he remembers being a hand-shaking politician and flying fighter jets. Sylar's memories these are not, but Samuel is a patient man. He's going to bring out the memories of the animal inside.
Step 1: Invite the police captain who is hunting Sylar to the carnival. Samuel reasons that Sylar might accidentally kill Captain Lubbock if he sees him, which Samuel thinks might open the skull-splitting one's mind. Step 2: Introduce Sylar to Damien, the man who can open up Sylar's mind. In the House of Mirrors, Damien flips a switch inside Sylar, and he (and the audience) is treated to a greatest hits album of Sylar's kills. (Still miss you, Elle!)
Sylar doesn't want to believe he is a killer, but Samuel convinces him that he was brought to the family because the outside world made him a monster. Here, he can defend the family from those who hope to harm him. And since Sylar's gotten his memories back, Samuel no longer needs Captain Lubbock. Samuel sics Sylar on the policeman, but he refuses to kill him, instead warning him to run. When Lubbock won't lower his weapon, Sylar is unable to control his electrical power and shocks him. (Samuel defines this as muscle memory - the body's way of doing what your mind can't tell it to anymore.) Sylar seems poised to move in for the kill, but just before he completes the deed, he stops and turns to walk away. Cue Edgar, who carves up Lubbock like a Thanksgiving turkey.
Even though Sylar knows what he's done, he's still a clean slate (thus the episode title). Edgar is upset with Samuel, partly because Lydia has taken a shine to Sylar, but mostly because he wonders what good Sylar is if he won't kill. Samuel begs Edgar for his patience, saying Sylar is still a baby learning how to walk. So Samuel plans to dirty up Sylar's clean slate with their ideals. And when their new monster is created, he'll never leave the family behind.
Hiro the Magnificent
I have to say, Hiro is exponentially more tolerable when Ando's not around. While Pete is out looking for a way to save Hiro's life, Hiro tries to explain Emma's ability to her. Apparently that huge crack in her wall scared her, as Emma now wants to turn her power off. Hiro explains that it's not like a light switch, and that all heroes must use their powers to help others. Emma is having none of it, and leaves Hiro alone.
So, Hiro sets up a magic show for fellow patients. He uses his power to stop time, so that Emma can fully grasp just what his power is. She plays along with Hiro's "disappearing" act, and Hiro explains that there are no bad powers. He tells Emma to try and understand the power to do good things. In this case, Hiro has made a room full of sick people happy, something Emma is able to do later with her piano playing. Mission accomplished.
Hiro's nurse scolds him for getting out of bed, and Emma warns him that using his power is killing him. Hiro then remembers Charlie, who used her power to keep living in the face of death. Hiro is appalled that he hadn't previously put Charlie on his bucket list. And once he helps Emma see the reason for her power, Hiro again disappears, just before Peter can get back to save him with Jeremy's power. And where should he pop up? Outside the Burnt Toast Diner looking in at none other than Charlie!
What did you think of "Tabula Rasa?" Are you excited to see Charlie and Hiro together again? Think they'll finally get to finish that kiss? What do you think Samuel's real intentions are for Sylar? How long do you think Peter will hang on to his healing power? He is a paramedic, of course, but I wonder if we might see him lose control of the power as well. Share all your thoughts in the comments below.