It looks like television mastermind Bryan Fuller is following through with his previously-rumored return to Heroes now that Pushing Daisies has been canceled. And judging from this awesome interview with Michael Ausiello, something tells me we can expect Heroes to get a lot better come the second half of season three. While he has to build off a plotline begun by certain former producers, it’s clear that Fuller has a good sense of Heroes’ current narrative failures and what it takes to remedy them.
On the problems that arose in seasons two and three:
It became too dense and fell into certain sci-fi trappings. For instance, in the “Villains” arc, when you talk about formulas and catalysts, it takes the face off the drama. And I think the goal for everybody is to put a face back on the drama. You have to save something with a face; otherwise you don’t understand what you’re caring about. I thought the “Villains” arc started out very interestingly, and then became sort of muddy and dense and I couldn’t get my hooks into the characters to understand their motivations.
I also started to feel confused about what people’s abilities were. One of the great things about the first season is that the metaphor for their abilities was very clear. Those metaphors seem to have gotten complicated in the past two seasons. I share that concern with everybody on the writing staff. It’s not like I’m coming in and saying, “This is what you need to do to fix it!” Everybody knows what needs to be fixed and everybody is sort of rowing in that direction.
As someone who loved Heroes up until the sucktastic season one finale, I’m glad to hear that somebody on its staff is finally admitting to the show’s problems, and that he has the full support of the other writers to change course. Something also tells me he couldn’t speak as freely about these issues if former producers Jeph Loeb and Jesse Alexander were still involved. I’m fairly certain that their departure, coupled with Fuller’s return, could bring Heroes back to greatness—or at least make it watchable again.
Fuller’s first episode is 3×19, which is the sixth episode of the Fugitives arc set to begin airing early next year. He goes on to mention in the interview that the main characters will finally return to normal, non-super-powered, lives (Peter Patrelli is a paramedic! Claire is college-bound!). Given that I don’t even recognize the characters anymore from their season one counterparts, this is change for the better. We can also expect the show’s narrative to become more focused, with fewer plotlines per-episode.
Fuller plans to stick around for season four, but I wouldn’t be surprised if he jumps ship to work on another series of his own that will ultimately die because it’s “too good for TV”. Until then, Heroes fans should strap in for a treat. I just hope they remember what good Heroes is like.
Discuss: Are you a Heroes apologist or hater? Do you think Fuller could help bring the show back from the brink of suck? What sort of God cancels Pushing Daisies anyway? Sigh.