Episode 4.01 : Orientation

  • Heroes
    • Episode Premiere : September 21, 2009
    • Distributor : NBC
    • Genre : Drama, Sci-Fi
    • Seasons : 4
    • Show Period : 2007 - 2010
    • Production Company: NBC Universal, Tailwind
    • Official Site : http://www.nbc.com/Heroes/

Cast and Crew

The Story

In a field, Samuel sermonizes over the grave of his brother Joseph. For those gathered, life in a traditional family hasn't worked out; that's why they created a new family -- to offer protection from the outside world, and guard their special gifts. Every one of them deserves the chance to be who they really are, and a chance at redemption. When it's time, they'll all find their way home. Samuel holds his hands up and dirt pours into the grave, burying his brother, once and for all. The mourners turn and head back to a carnival in the distance.

In Arlington, Virginia, a nervous Claire meets her new college roommate, Annie. Annie has her future all mapped out, with plans to become the youngest ever governor of Massachusetts. Noticing Claire's collection of stuffed teddy bears, Annie warns that it may be time to put aside childish things -- Claire shouldn't let her GED be a lifestyle choice. Offering to help Claire plan her own trajectory, Annie sets her up to take a placement test for a difficult algebra class later in the day.

Back in Tokyo, Ando is skeptical of Hiro's new business, Dial-A-Hero. When Hiro pulls out a bar graph to show proof of concept, a photo falls out: 14 years ago, Hiro, his sister Kimiko, and best friend Ando attended a carnival together. Ando recalls that was the night of Slushy Incident, when he spilled his slushy on Kimiko's new dress, and she started hating him. Kimiko pops in to register her total disgust for Hiro's new business -- how could he spend 50 million yen on Dial-A-Hero!? Blaming Ando for everything, Kimiko cuts off Hiro's funding, just as the phone rings with his first client.

Peter has returned to his EMT job in New York City. A call comes in while he and partner Hesam are stuck in a traffic jam. Despite Hesam's protests, Peter decides he's going to run the 12 blocks. Still holding onto Mohinder's powers of ultimate strength, Peter vaults through alleys and over trucks to the scene of the car accident to save a pregnant woman from a fiery death in the nick of time.

Bewildered, Claire stares at a complex algebra problem on the blackboard -- the test to get into the exclusive algebra class. As Annie complains that the problem is too easy, Claire spots the red dot of a laser site on her chest. She gasps as men in black shoot a tranquilizer dart into her chest, then shakes back to reality, realizing that there are no men, no dart, and that everyone is staring at her. Claiming that this isn't the right class for her, Claire gathers her belongings and hightails it out of the lecture hall.

Hesam tries to congratulate Peter on his most recent save, but Peter can only see the downside: if he was 30 seconds later, mother and her new twins would have died. He's got to be faster. Hesam knows that Peter is accomplishing superhuman feats and working too much, kind of like he's obsessed with the job. What's up? How about going out for a drink? Peter politely refuses.

Hiro and Ando report to their first client, a little girl, whose cat Muffin Man is stranded on a platform high above the street. Realizing that their combined powers won't do the trick, Hiro sends Ando off to rescue the cat, old school. Ando climbs a drain pipe to lure the cat into his arms, only to have Muffin Man take a swipe at his chin. In the scuffle, Ando falls off the roof with the cat in his arms. Realizing that if you want to get something done, you have to do it yourself, Hiro freezes time before Ando hits the ground.

Angela calls H.R.G. She's given him six weeks to get his personal life in order, now it's time to get the Company up and running. Tracy is on the rampage, killing former Building 26 employees; it won't be long until she comes after H.R.G. or Nathan. Claiming that he was wrong for abetting Angela's plan to turn Sylar into Nathan, H.R.G. isn't sure that he's the man with the plan anymore, now that he's lost his family. Late to meet Claire on her first day at college, H.R.G. gets into his car, only to have water pour through the vents, as ice crackles around the doors and windows.

A bullet shatters the window of H.R.G.'s car, and the tide of water washes him to the pavement. Danko knows that Tracy is behind the attack, and intends to kill her before she kills them. He's heard that H.R.G. is back in business with the Petrellis, but H.R.G. denies it, claiming he's starting over. Meanwhile, Claire bumps into friendly co-ed and former Texan Gretchen, who recognizes her name from the Murder at Union Wells scandal. Gretchen advises Claire to change her name, but Claire explains that she's trying to just be herself for a change.

Back in Tokyo, Hiro unfreezes time, and Ando harmlessly drops to the ground to return Muffin Man to the grateful little girl. Finding that Hiro is frozen and won't snap out of it, Ando straps him to a dolly and wheels away. Meanwhile, Angela waits for Nathan in a sushi restaurant, shocked when Sylar shows up instead. Luckily for Angela, this is merely one of her dreams. She snaps out of it when her limo arrives at the same restaurant.

Nathan arrives, greeting Angela with the same words Sylar used in her dream. He's been distracted, and has been reflecting on his life, which doesn't seem like his life. Realizing he's been a jerk in the past, Nathan vows to become a better person. Angela tries to persuade Nathan that he's merely going through a mid-life crisis, advising him to find an expensive sports car and a young woman of questionable morals. After all, that's what worked for his father.

Angela calls Matt in Los Angeles. They have a problem: Sylar is starting to re-emerge, and Matt needs to fix him. Matt insists that he's not using his ability anymore. Since the day H.R.G. and Angela strong-armed him into doing "that thing," he's felt like there's something inside of him that he can't get out. Matt is out, and he's done. Angela claims that there's no such thing as "out" for people like them, but Matt wishes her luck and hangs up the phone. Meanwhile, Nathan reaches for his coffee cup, amazed when it slides across his desk and into his hand. Examining his hands, he's even more freaked out when they spurt an arc of blue lightening.

Claire returns to her dorm room to find Annie lecturing H.R.G.: Claire could be an above average student if she only applied herself. Annie reminds Claire of the mixer later that night, and skips out. Claire tells H.R.G. about what happened with Gretchen, prompting him to remind her that college is the place for reinvention. Maybe Claire shouldn't have changed her name back to Claire. But Claire is trying her own brand of reinvention, which entails telling the truth, or at least the truth-ISH.

In the middle of the Sullivan Brothers Carnival, lovely Lydia removes her robe in Samuel's tent, baring her tattooed back. Samuel touches his tattoo needle to Lydia's back, and a portrait of Danko emerges. Samuel orders quiet Edgar to kill Danko and retrieve the compass he took from Joseph, but Edgar balks. What about Samuel's graveside redemption speech? Samuel admits he left out the part about necessary vengeance. To seal the deal, Samuel jams his inked needle into Edgar's hand. Suddenly, tattooed hands appear on Edgar's neck, choking the life out of him. Apologizing, Samuel promises that this will be the last such request, and the hands disappear.

H.R.G. is eating sushi alone when Tracy appears. She still hasn't decided if she's going to kill him or not, but she does know that when she shattered, the only thing that put her back together was one cohesive thought: killing all Building 26 employees. H.R.G. insists that Tracy's not a killer, and offers to help her get her life back. She knows that Danko won't stop until he kills her, but H.R.G. promises to change Danko's mind. H.R.G. has been bagging and tagging for 20 years without helping anyone. Now it's time for redemption.

H.R.G. meets Danko at the abandoned Building 26 offices. Danko's not interested in laying off Tracy; she's killed four of his men, and he's going to kill her. Handing over an envelope with the offer of a permanent vacation courtesy of the U.S. government, H.R.G. explains that he will get what he wants. The Haitian steps out of the shadows, and wipes Danko's mind of all memories of Tracy. Meanwhile, Peter returns to his barren apartment, where the only decoration is a wall of newspaper clippings about the people he's saved. Nathan calls to beg Peter to call him back, but Peter doesn't pick up the phone.

Danko returns to his apartment, where he's surprised by Tracy. He pulls his gun, demanding to know who she is. When Tracy realizes he doesn't remember her, she turns to leave; it's not worth it. When something shatters in the other room, Danko investigates, only to be attacked by Edgar, who wields two knives with lightening speed. By the time Tracy enters, Danko is dead. Edgar attacks Tracy, but his swipes yield only water. With a smirk, Tracy grabs Edgar's arm, freezing the knife, which drops to the floor. Edgar speeds off, leaving Tracy with Danko's corpse.

At her first college mixer, Claire bumps into Gretchen, who apologizes for freaking her out earlier. Claire admits that she's just trying to start over, and leave the bad stuff behind. Annie calls to Claire, intending to kick her butt in Guitar Hero, but Claire invites Gretchen to play instead.

Ando employs evasive maneuvers to avoid Kimiko as he wheels Hiro through the office. Ando shakes Hiro awake, pointing out his bloody nose, and threatens to take him to the doctor. Hiro admits he's already been to the doctor, and the news isn't good: Hiro is dying, maybe soon, and there's nothing he can do. Ando insists that Hiro go back in time to fix himself, but Hiro refuses to change the past, it's too dangerous. He knows it all started the night of the carnival, when a fortune teller told him that he would become a powerful hero. Suddenly, Hiro disappears, landing at the carnival, 14 years ago.

Samuel applies ink to Lydia's back to yield an image of Hiro. When Lydia informs him that Hiro was at the carnival 14 years ago, Samuel approaches weak and elderly Arnold. Samuel needs Arnold to send him back to the past one more time, since there might be someone there who can help them fix it. Meanwhile, Claire returns to her empty dorm room, looking for Annie. Noticing an open window, Claire goes to close it, only to spy Annie on the pavement below, lying in a pool of her own blood.

Back in his office, Nathan concentrates on his coffee cup, frustrated when it won't move. He gives up and goes to the bathroom, unaware that he's turned on the light switch with his mind. In Los Angeles, Matt trips over one of Baby Matt's toys, then brings it to his room. Alarmed that the baby isn't in his crib, Matt calls for his son, shocked to find him in Sylar's arms. Sylar smiles devilishly, explaining that he wants his body back.

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