Heroes 3.20: "Cold Snap"

It's amazing what a powerful creative force can do for a writers' room. "Heroes" is often written by committee, with the credit going to whichever writer gives a script its final polish. The net effect is that an episode is based on a bullet-point list of gestalt ideas, and it comes down to the talent and inspiration of the writer to flesh that out into something worthwhile. Given what weĆ¢€™ve seen of the "inspiration" provided by Tim Kring and the previous showrunners and the endless repetition of plot elements, that room needed some new (or, in this case, old) blood.


I make this point because it seemed to me that this episode wasn't necessarily a dramatic move away from the storytelling conceits that were found in previous episodes. Obviously, it couldn't stray too far from what was established, but if one saw a summary of previous episodes and this episode side by side, it wouldn't look all that different. What was different, however, was the evolution from the breaking of the story to the final version. The tone was substantially different, and I believe that is what many fans have noticed and continue to laud.


For example, Daphne's death seems to be rather pointless, given the fact that the audience was already led to believe that Daphne was dead once and she actually dies of her earlier wound in this episode. The end effect (driving Parkman towards revenge) was already in place. Letting her live only serves the purpose of giving Matt and Daphne a moment of closure that was previously missing, thus exploring an aspect of Matt's power that hasn't been seen recently.


There's also the baby plot with Hiro and Ando. Now, using this plot to explore Hiro's psychological reaction to everything that happened in Volume Three was a nice touch, because they usually don't bother with that enough. But having Matt's baby somehow restore part of Hiro's ability? That's a real stretch.


Finally, there's the latest example of a character "dying" out of some semblance of sacrifice, despite the fact that she's obviously not dead. Tracy's trick of freezing herself and fooling Danko into thinking that he can shatter her to death was clever enough, but how many times has a character seemingly died, only to come back? (See Daphne's recent arc.) This happens all the time on "Heroes".


Normally these things would be irritating. In this case, they were given more depth by just the right spin on the material. There was a much better emphasis on the characters and how these situations were affecting them on a personal level. Daphne's fate was secondary to how Matt reacted to the knowledge of it, and how he ultimately helped her have one last magical moment. Hiro's interaction with the baby was mostly about his own sublimated emotions. Tracy's ruse was well-done, and her reasons were tied to her regret for betraying Micah.


Add to that the exploration of Angela's attempts to escape Danko's forces (which was focused mostly on her fear), and this was more devoted to motivations than the lion's share of the episodes this season. It's hard to know if this was Bryan Fuller's doing or if it was simply the synergistic effect of his return to the writers' room. But whatever it was, it was a huge step in the right direction.

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Mar 24, 2009 9:47PM EDT

i havent watched heroes in ever cuz they hav been havin too many hiatuses and it takes too long to wait every monday cuz it just seems 2 long 2 me.also the storyline just got boring 4 me but the way i rember it wuz that it wuz prety good so i still like heroes but i aint continuting it.

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Mar 24, 2009 10:15PM EDT

Good call on the not-death continuance. I love Daphne, but I am so glad that for once we know absolutely that someone on Heroes is DEAD. And, you're right, she probably should have just been dead the first time.
I have to argue with you on the Toddler-Touch-And-Go giving Hiro some powers business. For Heroes, it's really not much of a stretch at all - especially given that Hiro doesn't have ALL of his powers back yet. (For which I am grateful. Because the only thing that bothers me more than not-dying in Heroes is the constant time-travelling/knowledge of the future.)
I commend you for giving Tracy due credit for cleverness. I still wish she was just a) a bitch and b) dead. (Oh Ali Larter, will you EVER leave this show?)

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Mar 26, 2009 11:53PM EDT

This heroes episode was so bad it felt like a fish out of water just as its life is finally extinguished. Heroes doesn't know what it wants nor does it actually have a real point or goal anymore. I was SO ANGRY when the NBC executives decided to kill the deep,thought provoking 4400 off of their subsidiary station USA and bring about the crowd pleasure Heroes.
At first I was like oh this is okay somewhat good but now I am finally sick of these plots designed to drag out the series which as of right now is headed into the ground and about to be canceled. I am just pissed off that they took all of the air and resources out of 4400 before it could at least have a proper finish to invest in Heroes which has now officially fallen short.
Evidence: Heroes is 4400 copy
Burkoff=SureshHiro time travel + Tom Baldwin time travelPromicin= mystery formulapromcin soilders =formula soildersNtAC=pinehearst and primatechthe shootings of 4400's Collier and Heroes' Nathan Petrelli, both featuring a young girl whose name starts with 'M' with an ability that makes her seem very useful to some dubious peopleKyle's ability seems to have moved to Heroes and manifested Nathan for some reason!Jordan Collier could take peoples powers away, Arthur Petrelli could do the same thing.Jordan Collier introduces Promicin, Arthur Petrielli introduces wonderdrug.
THERE! Ive vented!

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