This was advertised as the HRG: Revealed! episode.
So, what have we learned?
1. Angela Petrelli has not completely disappeared.
HRG and Angela Petrelli have been in cahoots in the past, and apparently their alliance isn't dissolved yet. No hint as to where this is all headed quite yet, but it is good to have one of the few non-annoying female characters back on the show (I'm looking at you, Tracy).
2. Parkman has gone batshit insane.
We've seen jolly, happy Parkman. We've seen Spirit Walk Parkman. We've seen daddy/bromance Parkman. But this new, vengeful, violent Parkman is, well, kind of scary. Not since 'Five Years Gone' have we seen Parkman the bad guy (with good reasons). I miss nice Parkman, but it's good to see Greg Grunberg get to show a little range (and also remind us that he's a HUGE dude and you do NOT want to get in a tussle with him).
3. Mohinder still sucks.
Sad, but true. Half the episode, he's Mr. Morality, trying to keep Parkman from doing bad bad things. Then we find out he KNEW about this Hero-hunt before it even began and didn't tell anyone. Say what you will about Peter and Parkman's less-than-exemplary behavior in 'Cold Wars,' but please don't argue that Dr. Suresh isn't a dick. Because he kind of is.
4. Peter will actually shoot people.
For awhile there it seemed like good-guy nurse Peter Petrelli was back. Not so, it seems. He shot The Hunter with Nathan watching. He took out six or seven Building 26 (two-six) agents with a grenade. Who knows what he might do next?
5. Daphne is alive.
I WAS SO EXCITED TO SEE BREA GRANT'S NAME IN THE CREDITS!!! AND EVEN MORE EXCITED WHEN I REALIZED IT WASN'T *JUST* BECAUSE OF FLASHBACKS!!! Apparently Matt does some horrendous things to rescue her (blowing up Washington, DC?), but it's all good as long as Daphne comes back. At least in my book. Besides, maybe Hiro and Ando will stop it.
6. The Hunter is more than a military hardass.
Character depth beyond McCarthy-variety fervor and gun-toting vigilance was hinted at in this week's episode. I look forward to seeing it play out.
7. HRG is an enigma.
"You know me. I've always been comfortable with morally gray."
We know he joined Nathan's coalition because Nathan used Claire's safety as leverage. We know he's hunted the Heroes and will continue doing so. We know he told Parkman about Daphne, but we don't know why. We know he is trying to gain the trust of The Hunter. We know he and Angela Petrelli are planning something. And that's ALL. HRG is one of the most detailed characters on Heroes, and yet we still have no idea if he's a Hero or a Villain. And maybe it's better that way.
When all is said and done, 'Cold Wars' supplied more questions than answers. HRG is up to something, but what is it and how will it happen? Daphne is alive, what will Parkman do about it - will he really blow up the Capitol? Mohinder has been captured by Nathan, what happens now? And, of course, we still have the old questions. Who is The Rebel? Will Ando kill Hiro? When do Hiro and Ando need to save Parkman and why? Sylar?
"Frustrating" doesn't even begin to cover it. But this was an EXCELLENT episode, overall - storytelling, suspense, character development, AND explosions. And the comic-book cinematography was noticeable again, which is one thing I've really missed from the first season. Quality Heroes!
(I'd really like it to be next Monday NOW.)