Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Heroes: She's electric!

Spoilers for "Heroes" coming up just as soon as I try to muster the enthusiasm to make a joke about something that happened in the episode...

Okay, someone want to tell me why I should still care? I had been assuming my level of ennui with this season was the result of so little forward plot movement, but here we had an episode with arguably more of it than the rest of the season combined -- Peter opens the magic box, Veronica Mars shows up and electrocutes the head Lucky Charmer, Parkman confronts his father (who actually was the Nightmare Man and not a red herring) and has a quintessential illusion-inspired fight with Nathan, Mohinder crosses paths with Nikki, Monica learns how to use her powers, etc., etc. -- and yet I was just as bored with this one as all the others. I've been procrastinating this blog entry for the last few hours (the "My So-Called Life" DVD set makes a handy tool for that) because I just couldn't muster the enthusiasm to write about it.

Besides the obvious narrative foot-dragging, here are the problems, as I see them:
  • Flat characters. This was a problem in season one as well, but the stories were advancing so quickly and with so many surprises along the way that it didn't matter how two-dimensional almost everyone (even characters I enjoyed, like Hiro) were. The only regular character with any real complexity or nuance is HRG, who unsurprisingly is the one who's most watchable even when the stories are going nowhere. But now that we know this world, what everyone can do, etc., it becomes harder and harder to feel invested in a bunch of cardboard cut-outs who often have less personality than actual comic book superheroes.
  • The big split. I and other people rode with some of the slower sections of season one because we were under the impression that, eventually, all these characters would come together and something interesting would happen. Instead, we got that dud of a finale where everybody stood around while Peter beat up Sylar with a parking meter, and when the new season began, the writers had split everybody up again. There's more interaction now than there was at this time last season (say, Parkman and Nathan teaming up to see his dad), but we're still stuck in a bunch of parallel narratives that move only slightly faster than your average daytime soap.
  • Been there, read that. Back when this show began, I noted that Tim Kring wasn't a comic book fan, which could go one of two ways: 1)He would approach the concept of people with powers in an entirely fresh and interesting way, or 2)He would start recycling a bunch of comic book tropes without realizing it. It's been far more the latter than the former, though with people like Jeph Loeb on the staff, much of the recycling can't be written off as accidental. I don't even care that they're still ripping off Watchmen, or that Monica has the Taskmaster's powers, or whatever; there's only a limited number of new ideas out there, and I care more about something interesting being done with a concept than whether the concept has been done before. The problem is, they're not doing anything interesting. I've read that Parkman/Nathan fight scene a million times in X-Men and other comics, always playing out exactly that way. Maybe it seemed cool to the non comics-reading audience, but how big a portion of the audience is that?
Halfway through watching the episode on my DVR, I started looking forward to the "Journeyman" episode I planned to get to afterwards, then spent most of the rest of the episode waiting to see if Claire might appear to keep Hayden's consecutive episodes streak intact. (She didn't, which means either Jack Coleman's the only one left, or that nobody's been in every episode.) If the show was more engaging right now, neither of those thoughts would have entered my head for more than a second or two.

Am I being a tough grader here? "Heroes" consistently gets more comments than any other show I blog about these days, but in skimming the last few entries, it seems like most of the comments are arguments about why the show's lame, rather than whether it's lame. I'm not checking out yet, but I'm wondering if anyone else is thinking about it.

51 comments:

Killer Pimp J. John Johnny John said...

Definitely close...

Adam C. said...

My wife checked out before Season 2 even began, and I am thisclose to being jealous that she made the right call at the right time. What happened to the idea that the shorter arcs they were working on for this season would lead to faster paced stories?

Michael Sterling said...

You're not being too hard on it, and I don't know that it's actually changed all that much since last season. Nothing much happened then, and it's not even that there were more twists. Did you think the Nightmare Man would turn out to be Parkman's dad? The big difference, to me at least, is that we don't know where it's going. Last season, some of the characters knew what was going on and some didn't, but we all knew that New York was going to explode unless somebody did something to stop it. But now what? They bring down the company, but who's the company? What do they really do anyway? We knew and cared about New York, or at least the people in it. What is there to care about this season?

Also, what was up with the Veronica Mars plot? All that and she just gets called off for absolutely no reason? We all know that she and Peter will meet sometime, so stop wasting our time and show us what happens when they do.

Page said...

Huh. I actually kind of liked this episode, after being bored by all of Season 2 to date. Maybe it's due in part to my girl-crush on Kristen Bell (it was just so good to have her back on TV!), but I also liked the Parkman/Nathan fight, especially the "pre-fight" section where they each bought into the "reality" Daddy Parkman had created for them. (I should point out, however, that I am a member of the "non comics-reading audience," so maybe I'm just an easy audience for this stuff.) I also liked the Monica-Micah scenes - he was just so tickled to find out she had a power too and that tickled me! I do wish they'd bring Hiro the hell back from the 1600s, and get Peter the hell out of Ireland, but for me this week was a welcome improvement.

scott said...

i gave up after the first episode of the new season, for the boring characters and leaden pacing, sure, but also because i couldn't suspend my disbelief enough to continue. the first moment i started seriously thinking about giving up was when mohinder transported peter's dead body across midtown manhattan in the middle of the day. i still read about it, obviously, but i can't dedicate an hour of my week to it with so much better stuff on the air.

i'm curious, though, what you think it's ripping off from watchmen (apart from the ways in which every post-modern superhero story rips off watchmen)?

Alan Sepinwall said...

i'm curious, though, what you think it's ripping off from watchmen (apart from the ways in which every post-modern superhero story rips off watchmen)?

In the first season, the plot to scare the world into peace by nuking New York was directly stolen from the master plan in Watchmen.

In the new season, the concept of a mysterious villain, possibly with ties to the first generation of heroes, picking off heroes one by one, is very similar to the mystery of who killed the Comedian.

BigTed said...

When Kristen Bell was Veronica Mars, she didn't need superpowers to mouth off and kick ass. And the powers they gave her really don't accomplish much more than the trusty stun gun Veronica used to carry. (Maybe even less, since we saw Mohinder take down Niki with one.) There's no way to avoid the "Veronica" comparison (especially when her new character seems so similar -- she's even working for her father), and the updated version is just a little less interesting.

scott said...

huh. i honestly never thought of the master plan connection before. guess that's why you've got the tv critic job.

BF said...

In the words of Irish Girl: "Get on with it already".

Matty said...

As someone who has never read a comic book, I was disappointed with the first few episodes, but last night got me going again. I wish they'd get on with the Hiro plot immediately, but I'm happy with most everything else. The same can be said for most of my friends who watch, none of whom are comic book readers.

Stef said...

I am also getting really bored with this show. When Parkman and Nathan got locked up in their nightmare realities, I actually thought "Well, I hope they stay there. Two less boring characters to have to pay attention to."

And I do admit that I'm only half-way watching, so I may be missing things continuity (heh) wise. But when Mohinder showed up at Monica's door, it just seemed so out of nowhere that for a flash I thought "Maybe it's Sylar!" and that things would get exciting again. But, no, it's more company-virus-blah-blah.

I want HRG to get all bad again, and I want Peter and Veronica to have a love-hate relationship with lots of cheesy fights. And I want Sark to come to the present day. Thnk there are any chances?

AndyW said...

Huh. I liked last night's episode.

I thought the Nathan-Parkman stuff was well-executed, in a "Twilight Zone" sort of way, I liked the head-fake about Parkman's dad, I liked that we didn't see Claire and got very little of Hiro's lame storyline, Peter was less annoying than he has been. I like Mohinder and Nikki compromising themselves with their eyes wide open.

It had me wondering what's going to happen next and that's a huge step forward for this season.

Eric R said...

Yes, this season has been dissappointing. I look back to how much I looked forward to the premiere and the show has done nothing to confirm that hype. Every single episode has seemed like a set up to a payoff episode that has never happened. They need more payoffs, that is what plagued the finale, and it is still plaguing the show. The storyline is one long arc leading to the end, instead of smaller arcs that payoff every 4 episodes or so.

To me, there are now too many characters. I don't like having to guess week by week who I will or won't see. Give me more Hiro, and do something with Peter besides sticking him on the face of some Irish broad.

I will continue to watch because I think the concept is too good for them to continue to screw it up.

curious george said...

You're right on the money, Alan. I have nothing to add.

brian said...

I'm another who continues to like it. Even the parts I don't particularly like hold interest. For example, Peter - the Irish stuff was really lame and the box delay, but I do want to know how he ended up where he is, how he survived, how he got kristen bell's power, where he's been?

All the flaws that I hear people point out were present in the first season. If you didn't notice them, maybe you were impresses/distracted by other things (I was going to say the novelty, but it's not really that novel a show).

Anonymous said...

Good point, Brian, that Peter's ability to zap people must have been acquired from Kristen Bell's character.

But this show is boring, boring, and so glacially paced it is too predictable. All the scenes are so slow-paced, that, for example last week, after Parkman looked at the photo, I had plenty of time to say aloud "he's my father" before he said it.

I'll keep watching until I can see Kristen Bell in a bikini, then I'll probably stop. :)

Kristen said...

I've never read any comics, so I actually enjoyed this episode in comparison with others this season (which isn't saying too much).

I did enjoy KB and liked that she had VM nuances but had distinctive differences.

jim treacher said...

Did you guys notice that Kristen Bell and David Anders were credited as regular cast members?

I like Monica's story (and sweater). Otherwise, it feels like they're treading water.

Anonymous said...

The problem is this: This a total retread of the first season. Heroes are separated, there is an unknown villain, a prophecy that must be prevented, and heroes learning about and coping with their powers. I don't think Kring should have necessarily turned Season 2 into an Avengers/JLA type storyline with a team of heroes, but I don't think he should have turned season 2 into a remake of season 1, either. Yawn.

dez said...

I read (or used to read) comics and I really liked last night's episode. Okay, I wanted to smack Mohinder silly for taking Molly to the Company, but except for Hiro's arc which is starting to bore me (forgive me, Hiro!), I was engaged with the stories and characters. I want to know when Peter either met or got close enough to KB to absorb her powers, and I want to know how permanent it is when he absorbs powers (for those who were hoping for another future-painter, Peter's still got some Isaac in him!).

I didn't miss Maya & Alejandro, though I am curious as to what Sylar is up to. And I loved that Monica immediately started learning martial arts (from Bruce Lee, right?) because that's exactly what I would do with those powers (though I would have chosen "Kung Fu Hustle" for my guide, heh) :-)

Susan said...

I've never read any comics, so I thought the Nathan/Parkman scene was really cool. However, on the flip side, I never watched Veronica Mars, so I have no real excitement about seeing Kristen Bell show up. All I know is that they introduced yet another character who hasn't gone anywhere.

I'm sliding into the "lame" camp, but the show was so great last year that it will be a while before it entirely wears out its good will with me. I'm eager to see some storylines advance. Hiro is still in Japan for no reason, Ando has no reason to even have screen time except to advance Hiro's story, Monica keeps rambling on about her lost future, and if we even see Niki, it's for a fraction of a second. (Was she making a movie or something? Why so little of her in the first few eps? I actually like her and her story and want to see more.)

And the rest is just silly, like the Eye Bleeding Wonder Twins, or Sylar without powers, or Peter looking into the box and finding... out his last name. And what is the grand purpose of this season? Taking down the Company? Then let's get on with it.

Kristin said...

The problem for me is that they give us something interesting (like Sylar last week, which caught my attention), only to take it away and lose the momentum they had built. Which tells me they don't know how to string out the separate storylines. They are having trouble building the stories and keeping them moving, all the while bringing them together.

I was also disappointed in Peter's painting. I was excited when he figured out he could 'see' paintings, but then he paints nothing special. At least, to me, it seemed like nothing special. There was nothing compelling about that painting that would make me suddenly want to go to Montreal. Perhaps it's because they don't know what is behind that dark door yet. Would have been much better to give us this really creepy or disturbing painting...then Peter would be freaking out and wanting to do something.

They brought Kristen Bell in only to send her away right when things were getting good? That made NO sense to me.

I'm frustrated with the show. They put a lot of potentially interesting things into the mix and then make a mess of it. And yet I keep watching....

Number Five said...

Sorry to keep harping on this, but it's killing me how they're ignoring what happened in season 1. This week Mohinder went full circle and brought Molly back to the Company (an incredibly stupid move, by the way) and there's no comment about how she's been in their care before, how Mohinder helped her escape? It just doesn't make any sense! And when Mohinder recognized Niki I was excited because it seemed like they were referencing them meeting in the season 1 finale, but then I realized we didn't know anything about that meeting other than we saw on the screen. Does Mohinder only know that she has a family and has super strength? Does she know anything about him? The way they played it was vague and confusing.

Kristen Bell didn't do much this week, although we knew she was a villain as soon as she turned the corner at the dockyard and employed 1) gratuitous use of powers and 2) talking to oneself, both classic signs of being the bad guy.

There were some signs of life this week, though. Parkman's dad totally fooled me, and while it sounds like the illusion/fighting was ripped off from comic books, the way they filmed it on television was very well done. The Monica/Micah storyline was great, as the two of them continued to ask questions about their powers, test them out, enjoy them a little, etc. And while I'm a little uncomfortable with how Hiro's adventures in Japan are literalizing the mythic adventures of Kensei, I liked how they played with the idea of storytelling by having him write scrolls to Ando, the audience surrogate. What happens next, Ando? You gotta wait until Mondays at 9! (8 central, no idea what time that is in Tokyo)

Anonymous said...

I liked Micah/Monica. I like when people find out they have powers and are excited versus acting dumb about it (a la Parkman). However, what is with the step backward for Nikki? Didn't she get "cured" of her multiple personality thing in the finale when Jessica told her she could do it on her own? And she was accepting her powers then too.

At least we know how Peter got his electricity power.

BF said...

Now that we know Monica's "learn by watching" power isn't limited to TV, I wonder if she'll be able to acquire other "powers", making her a formidable Syler/Peter-type megaHero.

dez said...

^ I wonder if Sylar will get his groove back by eating her brain :(

Anonymous said...

bf, I doubt Monica can copycat powers. That was one of the limits of the Taskmaster - he could only copy physical abilities, not super powers.

Ted F. said...

The episode works a lot better if you just fast-forward through everything until the Kristen Bell and HRG scenes. I vote lame (especially now that they're having severe continuity errors), though I'll stick with it to solve the mystery of Veronica Mars.

I've found the Watchmen ripoffs increasingly annoying. The "master plan" even mirrored Watchmen closer than your brief description implies.

WTF is up with The Company if Lindermann wasn't in command of it?

Henry said...

Elle whateverhername is the worst part of this episode. She goes through her line like a teens who haven't passed high school yet. The worst casting decision so far amongst all of the new characters. On that note, they've added too many characters and only Monica works. Should really kill West, Elle, and the twins. They're boring.

Mo Ryan said...

Boring boring boring boring boring!

Unspeakably boring!

My husband is a comic book/graphic novel freak. I am not. We were *both* bored.

You're being too hard on it at all. You nailed it. Monica is unspeakably boring, I don't care what she can do.

And I was hoping Kristen Bell would liven things up, but no.

This show is so inconsistent -- there was some really fun stuff amid all the filler eps last year. This year feels like almost nothing but filler. Should we be happy that last night's ep didn't get weighed down even further by the Goo Twins? Yeesh.

Boring.

Woodrow L. Goode, IV said...

What's wrong is quite simple. The creators got everything off to a hopeless start by not explaining what happened.

The first episode of season two needed to start about 20 seconds of real time after the season finale. First question to answer-- who's dead? Who's MIA?

Second issue: What does everyone do now? Go back to their lives? Band together to fight injustice? Hide from the people pursuing you? Go after your enemies? Go public?

I'm guessing a competent writer could have tied up the loose ends in 15 minutes or less, with almost everyone placed fairly close to where they were.

Don't want to spend the first episode tying up all the loose ends the finale left open? Fine-- do a promotional film that NBC runs 97 times at the start of September. Put it in the DVD set. Let people view from the web site. Do a comic book. I can think of a few more cross-promotional schemes.

But don't just leave things unresolved. As David Chase is starting to figure out, it's not wise to leave viewers-- who spent dozens of hours thinking about your characters, empathizing and wondering about them-- confused and annoyed at the end of a saga.

For one thing, many viewers won't be able to move forward until they get that closure. The ones who can are likely to be angry, and much less willing to go forward trusting that things will all be explained.

Second problem: They arbitrarily drop Hiro and Peter into situations that seem to have zero connection to the story. And there is no justification for why they're still there. Like the Kim Bauer subplots on 24, it appears to be a complete waste of time.

Third, we have a bunch of new, not very interesting characters.

Fourth, we have a mystery (who's in the picture and what were they doing?) that viewers don't seem to care about-- and none of the characters are trying to unravel. Can anyone explain why Parkman the psychic (who also happens to be a New York cop), didn't go try to pump Mrs. Petrelli first?

Fifth, it's hard to unring a bell. People were promised great things, they set aside their many legitimate objections in the hopes of a big payoff-- and then they got jerked around.

This time, nobody will give them an inch. Oh, gee, there are new Isaac Isaac Mendes paintings? They seem to proliferate as widely as David Palmer's family. Why don't we just look in the Linderman vault? Shouldn't be hard-- just find the parent of a Heroes character who was married to Linderman.

It's sad to see this happen, but not entirely surprising. Blow the suspension of disbelief and you just can't get it back

Zach said...

Can anyone explain to me what Nikki's power is supposed to be? They kept promising an answer in season one, and if it came, I completely missed it. I was on the edge of my seat when Micah began describing his family's powers, but then when he finally got to Nikki he just said "I won't even get into that" (or something along those lines). Ability to see crazy dead sister in mirrors (and occasionally channel her)? Even if there is a good answer, she's still the show's weakest link.

Danny said...

Okay, so I enjoyed some littler things about the episode like Parkman asking Nathan for a lift to Philly and, you know, Bruce Lee.

But overall, yeah, I don't really care.

And it's probably for one thing (correct me if I am wrong). At this point last year, we were already clued into the threat and the potential fate of New York, right?

Zach said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
dez said...

Can anyone explain why Parkman the psychic (who also happens to be a New York cop), didn't go try to pump Mrs. Petrelli first?

Because he's not in full control of his powers yet and because she psychically screamed for him to get out of her head, which freaked him out?

Chris Littmann said...

Alan, either all returning TV shows are horrible, or you seem to be extremely negative at the start of this season. Maybe it's just me.

Anonymous said...

Woodrow has it right!

Dark Tyler said...

It's a pretty crappy season so far. When something like "Gossip Girl" is seriously, actually one of the 3 best new shows, and of all the returning ones, "House" (House!) is the only inventive and fun of them, you know something has gone horribly wrong during the hiatus.

"Heroes" is not the worst offender (it was mediocre at best last year, too, except for a couple of episodes around the 3/4 mark of the season) but it's boring as hell.

Matt said...

I've never read a comic book in my life. Must be why I still like Heroes, including this episode. I do get annoyed by the way nothing *ever* gets 100% resolved, though.

Also, I'm not usually prone to correcting useless trivia, but as a Bruce Lee fan I have make the following point:

That was not Bruce Lee. It was Jason Scott Lee (no relation, apparently) *playing* Bruce Lee in the movie "Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story." Fun movie--good fights--but nowhere near as cool as the real thing. There, my honor as a Bruce Lee fan is still intact.

In fact, I felt slightly scandalized that they didn't show an actual Bruce Lee movie.

Alan Sepinwall said...

Alan, either all returning TV shows are horrible, or you seem to be extremely negative at the start of this season.

What Dark Tyler said. Most of the shows I really like have, with the exception of "House," been stumbling at the start of this season. Good moments but not a lot of really good episodes.

barefootjim said...

I got the impression that even the writers and producers were bored with the Hiro story, which is why they decided to show it with that terrible device of the magic time-traveling sword.

I really liked Hiro at the beginning of season 1, but his character has gone straight downhill ever since he and Ando got to Vegas and turned into a bad comedy act.

Anonymous said...

Very close to checking out, too, Alan. I have not finished watching the last 3 Heroes (been falling asleep much earlier than usual due to my pregnancy), but last year that wouldn't stop me from rushing to Tivo the next day and finishing the episode. I just really don't care anymore, and I have been quite bored with the series this year. My husband disliked the first 3 or so eps but insists that it has gotten better. I can't say I agree with him. It's worse (to me) than what happened with Lost in season 2. I never considered giving up on that show even when the eps dragged.

Karen said...

I'm still watching, I confess, although it's almost against my better judgment. I agree that it's boring, I agree that it's Watchmen Lite (although, if you're gonna steal, you might as well steal from the best), and I agree that we seem to be playing season 1 backwards as the gathered heroes unmingle themselves.

Quite frankly, after season 1's "Save the cheerleader, save the world" turned out to be such a bust (what did saving Claire really accomplish? wasn't it Nathan getting Nuclear Peter out of NYC that kept everything really on track?), I wondered if I would bother. And the sloppiness of, for example, depositing Sylar on a highway in Mexico when the last time we saw him was deathly wounded and marooned on a jungle-infested island is really inexcusable.

But I continue to watch. I hate almost all the new heroes (Maya and Alejandro bore me to DEATH, and Monica is of only marginal interest so far), and even my wonderful Kristen Bell seems like morning-after Veronica Mars (she's doing a much more interesting job as the voice of "Gossip Girl"). But I'm curious to see how Sylar gets his powers back, and where they're going with Parkman's father (I did like that he was quite literally the "Nightmare Man," trapping Nathan and Matt in what seemed their own worst nightmares; I had assumed Molly was being metaphorical), and more Nichelle Nichols is always welcome (although she certainly hasn't had much to do). I'll be interested to see what the Senior Heroes turn out to be.

Oh, and any show that offers further promise of Milo Ventimiglia shirtless can't be all bad.

Anonymous said...

I am still loving this show, despite the slow moving story lines. This past episode had a ot of action, and I expect future episodes will explain what doesn't make sense (why is Peter in Ireland, why is Sylar alive, why won't Hiro come back, is DL really dead, what on earth did Angela do that was so bad that she is willing to take the fall for murder, what happened to Claire's real mom, etc.)
I'm sticking with it. Good clean fun.

Woodrow L. Goode, IV said...

Because [Parkman]'s not in full control of his powers yet and because she psychically screamed for him to get out of her head, which freaked him out?

Yup, that would definitely induce me to go running after someone described as "The Nightmare Man." Being screamed at is so much worse than confronting an enemy who just used his psychic powers to put your adopted daughter in a coma.

filmcricket said...

Chiming in late, but I thought this was the best one so far this year (although I realize that's not saying much. And I dont' read comic books). No West, no Black Oil Twins, very little of the Kensei story, and stuff actually happened. Also, Parkman Sr's power is gnarly.

Nathan actually got the loudest cheer out of me by knocking on Parkman Sr.'s door. Last week Parkman was all frantic about finding his dad, and when they got to the apt and he hesitated, I was like "Holy hell, he's going to spend the rest of the episode dithering outside the door because that's how this show rolls these days." And then Nathan knocked. It's the little things.

what did saving Claire really accomplish? wasn't it Nathan getting Nuclear Peter out of NYC that kept everything really on track?

Someone smart, and I can't remember if it was here or somewhere else, posited that by meeting Nathan Claire helped him discover his good side again. All season he'd pretty much either been a shark or clay in Ma Petrelli's hands, depending on your POV, but Claire woke him up and that's why he saved the day in the end. (Now, why his illegitimate daughter would have this effect when the consequences to his wife and sons apparently made no impression on him whatsoever is another question. But it's a plausible explanation to the "cheerleader/world" equation.)

nyactor said...

I agree that this season has
been slow moving and it feels like
a lot of characters are getting lost.

Peter's new love interest, Caitlin is actually Katie Carr who happens to be British (but throwing in some Irish).
We were in a 2 year acting program together here in NYC.

While I don't have a character arc myself on Heroes..I will show up as
a Room Service Guy from the Waldorf Astoria on GG for their Turkey Episode.

We are all just suffering from NO LOST. Should we worry about the fact that there are what? 5 or 6 new cast members for Lost this season...Jeremy Davies, Ken Leung, Andrea Roth, Fisher Stevens, & Lance Reddick..ok I count 5..
One wonders what to make of all of it..of course maybe some of them are flash-forward regulars...?!?

jim treacher said...

"Can anyone explain to me what Nikki's power is supposed to be?"

Super-tedium.

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dez said...

Being screamed at is so much worse than confronting an enemy who just used his psychic powers to put your adopted daughter in a coma.

Having your adopted daughter put in a coma by some guy is more of an inducement to find that particular guy than to stick around trying to get more info from someone who's shut you down already.

Dani in NC said...

I enjoyed the first season of Heroes, but I never had the "OMG!" reactions that a lot of fans did. Therefore, I wasn't let down by the finale. I am also enjoying the current season because it doesn't seem any worse than the first season to me. I just ignore the bits I don't like and go get a snack :-).

As another commenter mentioned, there aren't many outstanding shows on TV this season. If you are a TV addict like me and you decide to give up on Heroes, what are you going to watch in its place? If there was a superior show in the 9p time slot, I'd be watching it.