Binge-watching is pretty cool. Especially the feeling you get when with that WTF moment at the end of an episode and not having to wait a week or months for the next episode. However, I recently encountered a show that I wish I wasn’t binge-watching: Heroes.
I’m not criticizing Heroes. I like that show. It’s just that sometimes I can’t watch more than one episode in a row.
In preparation of Heroes Reborn, I wanted to watch all four seasons. I calculated and I had to watch two episodes a day to be caught up. I even left an extra week before the premiere of Heroes Reborn in case a I missed an episode a long the way. The premiere started and I was still halfway of Season 3.
Season 1 could be easily binge-watched. I enjoyed it. I got to figure out who each character was. I got excited when these “heroes” met each other. I wanted to desperately to know if Noah Bennet was a bad guy or a good guy. I was intrigued in finding out that a certain girl was the daughter of _________ and ____________. Skylar was cutting people’s heads. But everyone had one goal: save the world. It didn’t matter if everyone believed it or not. It was the goal. The series finale brought everyone together nicely and everyone had a role to play.
Season 2 was ok to binge because it’s about how everyone is trying to live normal lives knowing what they know now. Season 3 is mainly the heroes trying to find the enemy in all this and take down the company or whoever is harming the people with powers. The problem is that everyone is fighting the good fight separately. They get together for one second and then disperse. It’s as if everyone has the same goal but want to go about it in different ways.
Here is the real reason why it’s hard to binge watch Heroes. Certain narrative tropes are used over and over again. It’s repetitive. Maybe if I had seen the show weekly with the month hiatus, it wouldn’t have seen that way but watching a few episode a day for a week, it does.
Here are some story lines that are repetitive:
- Someone always wants to live a normal life rather than a kick ass superhero.
- The person whom you thought couldn’t die because they are important in the show, dies.
- A new hero is presented only to kill them a few episodes later.
- A new hero is presented but no longer mentioned after the season ends.
- The bad guy always seems to be some sort of Company who claims to be doing good but kills people at the same time. Total Mind f**k . Is the company good or bad? Which is it?
- Sylar kills people.
- Bennet is hiding something (even if it’s from himself).
- Someone has a wife at one point and then doesn’t (it’s not because she died).
The best characters are Hiro and Claire. Hiro because he actually wants to be a hero and is constantly looking for a mission. Claire because every time she is on screen, the plot moves along significantly. She was one of those “I want a normal life people” but quickly became “I’m never going to be normal so no use fighting it.”