Heroes Reborn Has Killed Off at Least One Fan Favorite from the Original Series

Friday, 14 August 2015 - 10:03AM
Heroes Reborn
Friday, 14 August 2015 - 10:03AM
Heroes Reborn Has Killed Off at Least One Fan Favorite from the Original Series

Heroes Reborn is bringing back a lot of the old guard from the original series, including Noah Bennet (Jack Coleman), Matt Parkman (Greg Grunberg), Mohinder Suresh (Sendhil Ramamurthy), and of course, Hiro Nakamura (Masi Oka). But there are several notable absences as well, and at the TCA press tour this week, Heroes creator Tim Kring confirmed that at least one of the fan favorite characters who isn't returning has actually died in the intervening years.

Possible spoilers ahead! (Click to reveal)


The promotional materials for the show have indicated that there was some kind of disastrous event that takes place before the show starts. Like 9/11, it's consistently referred to by the date on which it occurred: June 13. Kring has now confirmed that Hayden Panettiere's Claire Bennet, the original Hero and the cheerleader of the famous tagline "Save the cheerleader, save the world," died in that calamity.

Opening quote
"In this series, she has died along with many, many other people on June 13," said Kring (via Slashfilm). "There was an event that happened, which is a mystery. It's a big mystery because we all know that Claire shouldn't die. Don't know how, don't know why? We uncover a lot of that."
Closing quote


As was revealed to the world in the series finale of Heroes, Claire had superhuman regenerative abilities, and so shouldn't have been able to die. The entire premise of the pilot, in fact, was Claire trying and failing to kill herself over and over again in an attempt to test her powers. 

It's unknown whether any other original characters died in the June 13 disaster, but we wouldn't be surprised if Peter Petrelli (Milo Ventimiglia) and Tracy Strauss (Ali Larter) were killed in the event as well. Like Claire, they both have family members returning, who had much less significant roles in the original series, so their absence will have to be explained somehow. Plus, if many of the original heroes died in that event, then that would go a long way towards explaining the new "Where are the Heroes?" mantra:





But then again, the producers probably don't want to kill off too many main characters, in case any of them are available to return for a potential second season. Kring said (via Deadline) that several of the actors he wanted to return "didn't have availability, it was out of our control," although he clarified that it was also dependent on "what the story dictated."

This major character death will heavily inform the storyline of Noah Bennet, who will be investigating the mystery of the June 13 event:

Opening quote
"One of the things that we did with that is the character HRG, played by Jack Coleman, his storyline is uncovering the mystery of what happened in the intervening years," Kring said. "By following him, he kind of unpacks a lot of the mythology from the original series for the audience. There are things that he doesn't remember for various reasons that he has to go and find out why don't I know what I'm supposed to know here? He's uncovering a mystery."

"The June 13 date has all kinds of mystery attached to it. By having to go back to discover what happened or follow the trail of what happened, we unpack a lot of what happened in the intervening years, in a thriller-esque kind of way. His storyline has very much a '70s thriller / Three Days of the Condor quality because it's a bit of a paranoid thriller. Who does he trust and what does he know and who's telling him the truth?"
Closing quote


With all the focus on what happened in the years since the series finale, Heroes Reborn certainly isn't picking up where Heroes left off. The prequel series, Dark Matters (which you can watch in its entirety here), fills in the gaps somewhat, but Kring stated that in general, the miniseries doesn't feel like a fifth season as much as a tenth season:

Opening quote
"I would actually say that it is season 10," Kring said. "I know that sounds a little provocative but the point is, one of the things that we talked about at the very beginning in the writers room was how we wanted every single bit of the mythology to feel as though there was a continuum from the show, and the show picks up five years later. So, ergo, it would be five seasons later and this would be season 10. That was the thinking."
Closing quote


Heroes ran for four seasons from 2006-2010, and went off the air five years ago. If it had never been canceled, then the show would be entering its tenth season. Kring said that treating the show like a tenth season rather than a fifth season was a choice made by him and the network in order to even the playing field between dedicated viewers of the original series and new viewers (or, let's be real, viewers who dropped off somewhere in the second season):

Opening quote
"In other words, even the loyal viewer has missed all of this. That's the point... The idea is that for the loyal viewer of the original series, we want to honor them and they are rewarded for having been loyal fans of the show by seeing all kinds of things inside the show that other people may not see. There are tons of Easter eggs... [But] we need to be able to say if you weren't a viewer of the show originally, you needed to have an on-ramp."
Closing quote


Heroes Reborn premieres on September 24 at 8 pm ET on NBC.
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