Rejection: an unpleasant fact of life that often pushes a person to extreme measures. Some lock themselves up in their rooms and listen to Joy Division for days. Others self-medicate. Still others write cryptic songs about not getting the girl and sell millions of records. Finally, at least one scorned lover has concluded that burying an entire town with an immense pile of dirt is a valid coping mechanism.
After having his poor heart broken, Samuel levels an entire hillside town to the horror of his followers. Many of them say “peace out” and leave the carnival. Samuel realizes that he needs to regain their trust and starts hatching a plot to recapture his place as the Big Kahuna of the carnie clan.
Mass murder, just a minor indiscretion. I’m sure everyone will understand.
Meanwhile, Gretchen drives Claire to The Notorious HRG’s house. She tells Claire to tell HRG that Sylar resurfaced by poking his rodent-like head out at a review session at school and that maybe the HRG needs to play a little whack-a-mole. Claire is still giving HRG the silent treatment and responds, “It’s not like it’s a big deal.”
“A super power serial killer shape shifted into a coed and made a pie chart of your life. You have to tell your dad,” counters Gretchen. She has a point.
“Really?! ‘Cause when Sylar killed my real dad he didn’t tell me!” Claire also has a point.
They sit there, looking uncomfortable. Eventually, Gretchen convinces Claire that holding a grudge is way uncool and Claire relents. She agrees to talk to daddy.
Gretchen grabs Claire’s hand. “You want me to come with?”
“Yes,” replies Claire.
They beam at each other.
Sunshine after the rain, with a chance of rainbows and pots of gold!
But then the weather changes. “No,” says Claire. “This is something I need to do alone.”
Partly cloudy, with a chance of pouty leprechauns.
Gretchen frowns, but then perks up and offers to wait for Claire as she and daddy have their talk. Claire declines, saying that the list of things to talk about is way too long. Cut to a close up of their clasped hands. Gretchen pulls her hand away.
Overcast, with a chance of premature lesbian bed death.
“Good luck,” says Gretchen, forcing a cheery tone.
At this point, the previous chain of events in real life would lead to at least an affectionate goodbye. Not so much. Claire leaves the car unceremoniously, even coldly. Not even a kiss on the cheek? Not even a hug? Not even a handshake? Not even the Obama fist bump? On what planet does a new teenage couple refrain from pawing one another at any given opportunity? On NBC, apparently.
If this show were on cable, I would have gotten laid by now.
It turns out that HRG is not home, but his co-conspirator/ BFF /occasional date Lauren is there, along with satellite maps, Primatech files and a stash of firearms. Claire learns that HRG is currently on his way to the carnival to take Samuel out, Rambo-style.
Claire rushes off to the carnival to warn Lydia that HRG is coming to neutralize Samuel. She tells Lydia that every time HRG decides to play vigilante, things go awry, and she doesn’t want HRG or anyone else hurt. Soon after she arrives at the carnival Claire convinces Samuel to turn himself in, promising that the rest of the carnival will stay intact. Claire relays this information to HRG via cell phone, and they agree to meet Samuel in a field, where he will isolate himself from his followers so that he can be taken into custody.
Samuel stands up on a soapbox and tells everyone he is surrendering to authorities to save the carnival, but before he can finish bloviating about sacrificing himself for the greater good, he is shot. So is Claire. So are a bunch of bystanders. Mayhem ensues. Lydia is mortally wounded, and as she slips away, we learn that Samuel set up the massacre to frame HRG and to prove himself worthy to his followers. (We discover that the real shooter is actually his number one lackey, the creepy self-replicating man.)
The carnies become enraged. They drag Claire and HRG away and take them into captivity. Meanwhile, Lauren has hidden herself in foliage a few meters away, and she comes up with the following brilliant idea: Call Tracy Strauss. We’re not sure how this will help matters, but at least the mega-hot Ali Larter will get some airtime.
Meanwhile, Matt once again attempts to rid himself of that pest Sylar by locking Sylar in his own head and burying him in a hole in his basement. Then Peter shows up to free Sylar from his head because it might save Emma, but he ends up in Sylar’s nightmare from which neither he nor Sylar can escape. I hope Peter brought a deck of cards and a yo-yo, because being stuck in a virtual world for all of eternity with a former serial killer cum obsessively introspective emo-tard just sounds depressing.
Previews of the next episode show Peter and Sylar trading barbs in the post-Apocalyptic version Waiting for Godot where they are trapped, and Claire and HRG try to escape the carnival. Meanwhile, here is my take on the turn Heroes is taking, courtesy of anti-folk band The Moldy Peaches and Little Bunny Foo Foo:
One final note — where is Becky? She is nowhere to be seen, which could make sense, because — duh — she is invisible. Although isn’t it a bit disconcerting that Claire is fighting the carnies at the carnival and Gretchen is all alone in their dorm room? Gretchen, lock your window, or you could be the next contestant in the game show called Becky’s Amazing Physics Experiment.
Hint: Mortals do not win that game show. Careful, Gretchen!