I had been making predictions with SciFiCafe (a group of work folks that talk about LOST, HEROES and BSG on Thursday afternoon) about what would happen in the HEROES finale. Once it was over, Jim from the group IMd me and said "You nailed the finale!". My reply was "Unfortunately."
I thought it was pretty obvious that Hiro was going to "kill" Sylar, that Peter was going to be the exploding man, and that Nathan was going to save the day by flying in and carrying Peter away to explode. Isaac's "future sight" power was holding up to be true, Sylar exploding was too easy, and Nathan was being set up for some major redemption. I think what I objected to was not so much the backbone of the plot, which I think could have worked just fine, but how it was executed.
If Nathan's sacrifice is going to mean anything, then it has to be the last resort. There must be no other way out of the situation. This must be crystal clear, and then Nathan's sacrifice will have more depth. One can intuit that Peter couldn't control the power, one can intuit that he couldn't fly away because he can only use one power at a time, one can intuit that Claire couldn't shoot him and kill him, but all these things were murky.
It would have been rather simple to insert a few actions and a few bits of dialogue to clear this up. Claire tries and fails or shoots the wrong place, Peter either is so beaten up by Sylar (or injured by gunshots) that he can't control the power, Peter tries to fly and fails (or we see earlier he can't do two powers at once). It's just a matter of crossing the Ts and dotting the Is.
I would have liked to see a larger battle at the end, something a bit longer and a bit more complex, some real back and forth with Peter, more Nikki, something a bit more chaotic. There was too much time between Hiro popping in and stabbing Sylar, Sylar should have been able to stop him with TK. Earlier parts of the episode could have been cut to free up time for this.
Another nit: where were all the people? Even though it's supposedly late at night, it's still New York City. There are people everywhere. They don't just show up when all the action is over.
Note for future heroes: If you're going to kill the bad guy, make sure he'd dead! Cut off his head or dice him up or something. Once again, we have the lack of a logical follow-up. His body can still disappear, which makes it *really* creepy (wouldn't reanimating the dead be a nasty power? Back comes everyone, in thrall to a bad person). And it seemed like no one noticed Sylar was gone! Sheesh.
But despite the nits, I still enjoyed the finale and the first season of HEROES. Even though the characters tended to do more moping than heroing, and some of the dialogue and characterization clunked, I still thought the show worked overall. Now we have a Big Bad for the second season (the one who can see Molly. Who in the world is that? And why is that so bad?
Rumors are that the actors playing Peter and Nathan are coming back next season. Hmmmm. Peter I can easily see, Nathan I can see with some interesting twists (remember, Candace is around and Mama Petrelli doesn't want to let go of power). Supposedly most of the characters will come back, a big change from the original plan of new characters every season. I can see that - viewers (and networks) get tied up in their favorite characters and it's near impossible to get rid of them.
What will happen next season? Will we look the past histories of heroes in general? Was that Hiro's dad in the samurai armor? Will Matt and HRG and Peter make it? We'll have to wait until Fall to find out.