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Zachary Quinto is having a moment

The character actor takes the spotlight in ”Heroes”

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Scary but true: The friendly face who helped Jack Bauer save the world on 24 and once played God on JOAN OF ARCADIA is now sawing open skulls and killing cute waitresses. ”It’s kind of exactly what I envisioned as the next step in my career,” says the Pittsburgh native, 29. Last seen as Tori Spelling’s gay best friend on SO NOTORIOUS, Quinto has landed one of TV’s juiciest parts: Sylar, the brain-mutilating mutant serial killer on NBC’s superhot superhero saga, HEROES. After lurking in the shadows, Sylar finally revealed himself last week; viewers learned his real name, his occupation, and the father issues that led him to a life of power-trippy slaughter. ”Sylar is lonely and has unrealized potential,” Quinto says. ”When this [power] is awakened, it becomes something he can’t resist.” Now that his awful alter ego has been activated, the actor hopes to be ”sticking around for a while — longer, if I can help it.” Heroes, start sweating.