TV Recap: Heroes - Chapter 23 - How To Stop An Exploding Man

The first season of ‘Heroes’ drew to a close tonight and while everything that was supposed to happen did, I couldn’t help but find it a tad bit under-whelming. This is not to say that the episode wasn’t good or that I’m any less a fan of the series but I guess maybe I set my expectations a bit too high. The episode, titled “How to Stop an Exploding Man” brought all of the heroes together and left most of them not-dead, which was actually kind of surprising. Even DL, who was near death at the end of last week’s episode, managed to stumble and choke his way through the last hour of the season without dying. Though things are looking pretty grim for Matt and I think its safe to say that Nathan is a goner.

Peter took Claire to visit his brother in a parking garage. Claire had some serious doubts about this but he insisted, believing he could still trust his brother. He approached Nathan and asked him for help. After reading his mind, he realized Nathan had given up any hope that the explosion could be prevented. The second Peter and Nathan turned their backs to Claire, she snuck out of the car and ran off, only to get caught by Mrs. Petrelli. Peter ran off to find Claire and ended up overheating on nuclear energy and collapsed on the ground. Angela and Nathan take Claire with them and when Bennet calls, they tell him that they’re taking Claire away from the city. Claire talks to her dad on the phone and he tells her to get out of the city and then get away from Nathan and Angela as soon as she can. She goes with them back to Nathan’s office and tries to convince her father that they can still change things and save millions of lives. Nathan still seems to believe the explosion has to happen so Claire gives up trying to change his mind and jumps out the window. She drops to the ground and eventually gets up and runs off.

After collapsing on the street, Peter wakes up in the green house of Charles Deveaux’s apartment. He’s in the past, somehow. He sees himself talking to Charles and meeting Simone for the first time. He witnesses a conversation he had with Simone about death and how it links everyone together. Then, as he watches himself and Simone walk away, he goes out on the roof to find his mother sitting with Charles. They’re discussing the explosion that is to take place in the future. While Angela goes on about Nathan being the one to unite the people, Charles disagrees and says Peter is the one who will have the biggest effect on the events that are to come. Angela says Peter is weak and that Nathan is the strong one. The two disagree about the future. Charles believes it can be changed and we all know Angela agrees with Linderman. Angela wishes him well and it’s clear by the conversation they had and the way they departed that Charles was one of the old crew.

After Angela leaves, Charles tells Peter that he knows he’s there. Peter asks him if it’s a dream or if he went back in time. Charles says it doesn’t matter. That seemed like kind of a cop-out on the writers’ part if you ask me but I guess Charles is right. He tells Peter that it is his strength of heart and ability to love unconditionally that will be his greatest power. “All that really matters is love.” Seems like Peter has something in common with Harry Potter, there. Charles calls for past-Peter to come get him because he’s tired. Just then, Peter is woken up by Bennet.

While this whole vision thing was happening:

Hiro goes to leave the sword shop to save Ando. Kaito tries to get his son to refocus on the mission but Hiro isn’t having it. He respectfully explains that he has to save his friend. His father lets him go, giving him the repaired sword. Ando is at Isaac’s loft. He tries to kill Sylar but ends up nearly getting killed himself. Hiro arrives in time to zap himself and Ando out of there and back to their cubicles in Japan. He explains to his friend that he has to leave him there and go forward with the mission without him. He tells Ando that he taught him what bravery was and gives Ando the Kensai sword. He takes the other sword from Ando and blinks away.

DL gathers enough strength to phase himself and Niki out of Linderman’s office before the guards come bursting in. Niki leaves DL near the elevator and rushes off to find Micah. When she arrives at the suite, Candice is there appearing as Jessica. She beats Niki up for a while until Niki sees the real Jessica in a bit of broken mirror. Her sister tells her that the woman fighting her isn’t her and that she’s strong enough to kick her ass. Niki takes her sister’s advice and knocks Candice out with one punch. She gets Micah and they leave the suite.

Bennet, Matt and Mohinder were dealing with the Molly situation. Molly recognizes Matt as the detective who saved her from Sylar. The whole plan to kill Molly pretty much gets scrapped. Molly ends up getting sick again though so after Mohinder gives her treatment, they use her to find Sylar and Peter. Matt leaves to go try to kill Sylar with his gun but when he arrives at the loft, he finds it empty. Bennet goes off to find Peter. He wakes him from his vision and finally reveals his first name. It’s Noah.

Mohinder and Molly set off to leave the Linderman building but she senses that Sylar is very near. They get out into the hallway to find DL on the floor where Niki left him. The elevator won’t work though and they can hear the guards coming. Niki and Micah show up and while Niki breaks the doorknob off the stairwell door to stall the guards, Micah fires up the elevator and the group escape just in the nick of time.

Peter and Bennet meet Sylar in Kirby Plaza. Bennet has the gun in case he needs to shoot Peter or Sylar to keep either of them from exploding but Sylar slams him into a building and he’s barely able to move after that. Peter and Sylar begin to face off as all of the other heroes arrive on the scene. Matt tries to shoot Sylar but Sylar stops the bullets and throws them back on Matt. Niki hits Sylar with a pole, which is temporarily effective, and then she runs back to be with DL. Peter punches Sylar repeatedly and then starts to get all glowy as Sylar just watches, saying it turns out Peter’s the villain and that he is the hero. As if hearing his name, Hiro shows up and stabs Sylar with the sword. Peter begs Hiro to kill him to stop the explosion but Sylar, whose lying on the ground, uses his telekinesis to blast Hiro away. Hiro blinks himself out before he slams into a building. As Sylar lies on the ground bleeding from the sword wound, a bunch of violent images flash in his eyes before they turn white. Claire gets the gun and points it at Peter. He tells her to do it but she hesitates, crying.

Nathan shows up just in time and tells her, “The future isn’t written in stone.” Peter says he can’t let him die but Nathan, apparently moved by what Claire said to him earlier, says he can’t let everyone else die. “You saved the cheerleader, so we could save the world.” They say I love you to each other and then Nathan grabs him and flies off. The rest of the heroes watch the sky and eventually see the big explosion. The paramedics carry Matt away as Molly begs him not to die. Claire and Bennet talk about going home. Where Sylar was, there is only a pool of blood and a trail of it leading to a manhole. He either managed to get enough strength and/or used his powers to get into the sewer or else, he was dragged down there by someone else.

That is how the first Volume of ‘Heroes’ ended. We got a glimpse of the second volume at the very end of the episode. When Hiro blinked away, he arrived on a battlefield in ancient Japan, outside Kyoto in the year 1671. One of the warriors has the hero symbol on their flag. As the two sides prepare to attack each other, the sky goes dark and they all look up to see the sun blocked out in an eclipse.

As I said, I wouldn’t say I disliked the finale – just that it felt a tad bit predictable. It would’ve been nice had the stand-off between Sylar and the other heroes lasted for more than a few minutes before it was all over. There was so much potential for Peter and Sylar to really throw down but the whole thing just seemed rush. If both of them survived (and it appears there’s a good chance of that), perhaps we’ll get to see a true battle between the two sometime in a future season.

If anything, the episode’s true greatness didn’t arrive until the final moments when we see where Hiro ended up. Is anyone else wondering if Hiro will turn out to be Kensai, himself? Also, who is this mysterious bad-guy that Molly referred to earlier in the episode? She had no fear of finding Sylar, whom she nicknamed “The Boogey Man” but apparently, she is afraid to seek out one person, whom she says can see her when she’s trying to find him. Very interesting.

What did you think of the finale? Did it meet your expectations? Do you think Nathan is definitely dead? Will DL, Peter and Matt return next season? Post a comment below or check out our ‘Heroes’ forum here!

Kelly West
Assistant Managing Editor

Kelly joined CinemaBlend as a freelance TV news writer in 2006 and went on to serve as the site’s TV Editor before moving over to other roles on the site. At present, she’s an Assistant Managing Editor who spends much of her time brainstorming and editing feature content on the site.