Heroes Reborn‘s sprawling story started to contract in tonight’s episode. Several of the plot threads introduced in last week’s two-hour premiere slowly started converging as the characters flocked to Midian, Colorado, for the unveiling of Renautas’ new evo-powered technology. While tonight’s episode shed a bit more light on Renautas’ motives, particularly through the introduction of its CEO, other parts of the story remain frustratingly unexplained. “Under the Mask” just raised more questions instead of providing answers to the already-raised questions from “Brave New World”/”Odessa.”
The Arctic Circle:
In the realm of the still unexplained is whatever’s happening in the icy tundra. Tonight’s episode did tell us whom the young woman we met at the end of “Brave New World” is: Malina. She’s being mentored by an unseen figure who urges her to “think deep” and harness something because the storms will only get worse. It’s not entirely clear if she’s trying to stop them or control them… or what her powers are.
The vague warnings that something is coming are already growing tiresome. Yes, a little mystery is fine, but this show seems to be struggling with the pacing of unraveling its many mysteries. We’re three episodes in and the nature of the heroes’ mission is still not clear. Put another way: Heroes Reborn still hasn’t given us a snappy, viral-friendly, and succinct mission statement like “Save the cheerleader, save the world.”
Speaking of Renautas, “Under the Mask” introduces us to Erica Kravid (Rya Kihlstedt), Renautas’ CEO who is determined to use her company and its resources to solve the world’s problems. With Renautas and Erica, we have a wolf in sheep’s clothing kind of situation. Renautas presents itself as a company that believes “doing good is good business,” but underneath this façade is something more sinister and dangerous. Evidence: Right after she treats investors and partners to her saving the world spiel, her associate Mr. Harris informs her of Miko’s presence several floors below in Yamagato Tower, and she instructs him to capture her, extract information (Who is she? Why does she have Hiro Nakamura’s sword? Where did she come from?) using any means necessary and to then get rid of her.
Soon after Miko is apprehended by Mr. Harris, Erica departs for Midian, with Hiro’s sword in her possession, for the launch of Renautas’ new technology, Epic. Meanwhile, Mr. Harris and Miko have a chat: Apparently, Miko’s father is an evo and Mr. Harris wonders if she shares that power or if she’s just his greatest creation. It’s heavily implied that she died in some accident, but Miko doesn’t remember anything. Mr. Harris is about to go Jack Bauer with butcher’s cleaver to get more answers, but Ren, who infiltrated the building to find her, distracts him long enough for Miko to steal the knife and cut off Mr. Harris’ arm.
Miko and Ren manage to escape. On his way to save her, Ren saw Erica carrying Miko’s sword and overheard that she was heading to Midian, Colorado. So, that’s where they decide to go as we’re left wondering if Miko is a real girl who can enter the world of video games or if she’s a video game character come to life.
Noah and Quentin are tying to get their act together. Quentin’s complaining about his bullet wound, so Noah takes him to the nearest hospital. When they get there, a doctor recognizes Noah because they met on June 13, 2014; the doctor calls the guards on him. Realizing this place may hold answers to his questions, Noah takes a security guard hostage and forces him to show him the security camera footage from a year ago.
The security tape shows Noah in the morgue, but something is off with the time stamp, which leads Noah to deduce that time-traveling and stopping evo Hiro Nakamura was there too. After seeing Claire’s dead body on the slab, Noah is next shown walking Molly Walker out of the hospital. This gives him and Quentin even more reason to travel to Midian for answers. And, hopefully they’ll get some soon (spoiler alert: they don’t in this episode) because having Noah stuck untangling the past isn’t as strong of a narrative as Heroes Reborn hopes.
Meanwhile, Luke and Joanne continue heading west to track down El Vengador. On their journey, Luke discovers he’s an evo. Like Miko, his powers aren’t explained, but it seems as though he can control and emit electromagnetic radiation. He accidentally short circuits their car and turns his rare steak into a well-done one. When he and his wife stop at a motel, Luke rushes behind the buildings and starts to glow and appears to explode. It’s not surprising that Luke has powers because you don’t bring Zachary Levi, the King of Nerds, on a show with a superpowers and not give him some.
NEXT: With great power comes a lot of cheap beer