Tai Freligh reviews the twelfth and penultimate episode of Heroes Reborn, ‘Company Woman’…
So this week’s episode of Heroes Reborn was the last one before the season finale (and no, there won’t be another season of HR as confirmed by NBC) and I really wanted it to be chock-full of action and adventure. Entitled ‘Company Woman’, the episode was meant to be a play off of the episode from the first season of the original show, Heroes, called ‘Company Man’. That brilliant episode really fleshed out Noah Bennett’s motivations and backstory, where this episode was a weak tribute which was too little, too late to even make us care about Erica Kravid. So how did the second to last chapter of Heroes Reborn stack up? Let’s get to the recap and review and see!
With only one episode left in the entire story arc of Erica Kravid left, suddenly focusing on her backstory this late in the game felt really shoe-horned in and disingenuous. At this stage in the story, I don’t really care what her motivations and background are that made her what she is today. We’ve already spent the last 11 episodes being told that she’s bad news and we should hate her, so to try and elicit sympathy now is a bit too late. We get these flashbacks after Matt Parkman brings Erica’s daughter Taylor into her office at gunpoint demanding passage to the new world for him and his family. You remember he captured her in last week’s episode when she tried to get information from him about the master plan. He voodoo’d her and discovered she was pregnant with Francis’ baby and used that to leverage a set of those bitchin’ Not Apple Watches for himself and family from Kravid. This revelation to Erica launched a series of flashbacks to her past. As a young girl taking care of her sick father, she was taken advantage of by an EVO doctor who had healing abilities. In exchange for saving her father from an incurable disease, he molests her and unbeknownst to him, impregnates her. Years later her daughter (Taylor) is sick and she calls on the good doctor to once again use his special powers. He heals the child and when he notices that she looks like him, decides he will take her and raise her where she can learn more about EVOs and her potential abilities. Doing whatever it takes to protect her daughter and herself, she kills him. A knock at the door brings a very young Caspar (Penny Man) who offers to wipe her memory, but she WANTS to remember, so he offers his business card to Primatech instead.
In a nice little twist, we see Matt Parkman driving down the road in the middle of nowhere with his Not Apple Watches in the backseat, arguing with his ex-wife about coming with him to the future, when he loses control of the car, crashing down a river embankment, smashing his watch and trapping him in the car as he sees the other watches float away. Bummer, dude.
Taylor now holds her mother at gunpoint and demands to see Francis. Erica pretends to take her to him, but the reality is he is already dead. She tries to explain to Taylor her reasons for her big plan and why she believes it’s the right thing to do, but Taylor is having none of it. Kravid gives her a choice – travel to the future with her and start fresh with their relationship or stay there and die with everybody else. Taylor refuses to go with her because it means so many people would die while she was saved. Too bad Erica!
Tommy helps Erica send a group of people to the future in what is the first of many batches. He seems a little weakened by it, so Erica tells Richard, the head scientist dude, to help focus him. She also says that they don’t have a lot of time to get people to the future. Tommy has gotten out of the chair and overhears this part, which makes him realize she won’t be sending everybody, just a select few groups and that she has lied to him. Pop! Tommy is out of there before anybody can do anything. Erica sends her goons to grab Tommy’s mother and try to coerce him to stay on plan, but he freezes time to save her. They teleport to the Future Gateway where he’s supposed to meet Malina, but she’s not there and he needs to find her.
Luke, Malina, Quentin, and Phoebe are all heading to Odessa and when he hits a roadblock where they might be checking for EVOs, he decides he needs to get rid of the Wonder Twins and takes them into the woods. Before he can shoot mouthy Phoebe, she escapes, but Quentin stays behind and says he will help Luke because THAT is not his sister. No sh*t! They decide to head to Union Wells High School because that is where a lot of people are taking refuge, including a news crew. Luke’s big plan is to have Malina use her powers to get attention and then broadcast a message to Tommy telling them where they are so he can meet them. We see them walking to the gym, but Malina stops when she sees a picture of Claire Bennett in the trophy display. “That’s my mother”. “That’s the famous cheerleader?” Luke says and we are full circle to the original show. They are at Claire’s school for the big culminating event. They head to the gym and after making some trash swirl around, get the TV reporter’s attention. Meanwhile, Jose, Micah, Farah and Carlos stop at a gas station cuz snacks and see the TV broadcast. Micah uses his powers to broadcast the message on all screens around the world on a loop. Tommy’s mom sees the message on her phone and poof, Tommy is off to the Union Wells gymnasium to finally meet up with Malina.
Yay! Tommy and Malina are finally going to meet and save the world, but…whaaat? Hachiro Otomo has been sent there to get Tommy after Erica saw the broadcast. Just like he did with Hiro, Otomo touches Tommy and sends him to Evernow, where he is trapped and unable to use his powers. Dude! Erica has also sent her lapdog vengeance killer Joanne to finish the job with Malina. A showdown commences as Luke and Joanne point guns at each other and he tries to talk her out of it. She’s too far gone though. Unbeknownst to Luke, Malina stands up behind him and starts to use her powers to fight Joanne, but her powers are like a conventional oven. You need to pre-heat first and get them warmed up before actually using them, so Joanne just fires several shots into her at which point Luke fries Joanne and then instantly has remorse He goes to the smoking pile of ashes (never mind that she just apparently shot Malina like five times) and loses his mind. Then he turns around and rushes to Malina, but surprise – Farah and crew are at the gym too and she ran and jumped in front of Malina and takes all the bullets.
Ren gets off the Gateway bus and after getting a wrist scanner and ID check, heads into the staging area where in an amazing bit of coincidence, runs into Emily. Apparently small talk involves revealing your quest to a complete stranger. He tells her he needs to find the master of time and space. Surprise! That’s her boyfriend and she knows where he is. They head to the lab just in time to see Richard knockout (kill?) Hachiro after confirming that he has trapped Tommy inside the Evernow fortress like he did with Hiro.
So we end the episode with Luke, Malina, Quentin, Farah, Carlos, Micah and Jose all at the gym and Emily and Ren at the lab. Feels like that episode from season one of Heroes (‘Homecoming’) where everybody converged on the same high school for a bloody showdown with Silar. We still don’t know where HRG is or what has happened to Hiro, but the tease for the season finale shows everybody in action (and Tommy free from EVERNOW with Hiro’s sword), so hopefully we get answers along with resolution to all the plotlines. This episode gets a 7 out of 10 mostly because of the too little, too late attempt to humanize Erica Kravid.
Official Episode Synopsis: As the solar storms approach, Erica rushes to put her survival plan into action; Matt Parkman makes a desperate move to protect his family..
‘Project Reborn’, the Heroes Reborn finale, airs on January 21st at 8pm EST on NBC.