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TV on DVD — Heroes: Season 3 and Ando and Rescue Me greed?

In television on 09/02/2009 at 12:02 am

I was a bit of a Heroes junkie in Season 1 and 2. I needed my fix of the small band of people discovering their secret powers and frightening destinies: Nathan’s flying and brother Peter’s omni-powers; Claire, the cheerleader self-healer; Isaac the seer-artist; Matt the cop who can really hear, super-strong split-personality Jessica, machine-minded Micah and his moving-through-walls dad D.L., bad guy Sylar with his lid-flipping hunger for new powers and, best-loved of all, time-travelling Hiro and his powerless pal Ando.
But then the series started adding characters. And then more of those characters could manipulate so many elements that there were few deaths that couldn’t be erased or prevented by a trip back to a few minutes before the crime. By the end of Season 2, when Jessica disappeared into a building a second before it exploded, I knew that she or her doppelganger would be back. Pfft goes the suspense. Pfft also went my investment in characters that in Season 3 snapped back and forth between evil and good. And then the shapeshifting? Pfffffffft!
I was speeding through a preview copy of the new DVD set Heroes: Season 3 (well, most of it, anyway) to see if my judgment was too harsh when I realized why I still feel a little fond of this once-promising series about good and evil and hidden potential. It’s Hiro and Ando. They are the comic centre of the show, with slapstick scenes like the rescue of a baby near the end of Season 3 who could activate and disable machines and electronics with its mind, leaving the three of them stranded in the desert until Ando lucks on a particularly ridiculous face to make the Baby happy so it would make the car go. They are also truly devoted to each other, bickering and then coming together again.
I worried when, in Season 3, Ando artificially acquires his own power. I think the strength of the duo was in the inequity: Ando’s frustration with his lack of powers, his glee at exploiting what Hiro’s powers occasionally brought him, the mortal bumbling that would help solve the latest conundrum that Hiro’s powers could not.
But, watching the last few episodes, it seems that Andy and Hiro’s chemistry is so far unchanged. They still bicker, although now it’s about why he is still the sidekick when he has his very own powers.
NBC recently announced that, when Season 4 dawns in a two-hour episode on Sept. 21, that Hiro and Ando would start out the new season back in Japan, with a seriously ill Hiro deciding to try to make amends. And Ando?
I had a quick telephone chat with the actor who plays Ando, James Kyson Lee, and asked him about the coming season.
First thing I wanted to know: Will Ando try to kill Hiro, as per Hiro’s flash of the future?
“I depends if he behaves himself,” Lee answered, laughing.
In truth, Lee said Ando will be as devoted to Hiro as ever. “He has a terminal illness … and my goal is to save his life.”
Along the way, the Crimson Arc, as Ando calls his newly empowered self, will also have some fun, returning to the Andocycle, a gift from Hiro, and to honing his ball-of-energy powers.
He will also team up with someone other than Hiro. Asked who, Lee replied, “I’ll keep it a mystery, but it may happen pretty quickly; viewers won’t have to wait long.”
Cripes. Looks like I’m back. But if one more character goes shape-shifter…

I have already pledged my love for Rescue Me in a recent post. The new release Season 5, Vol. 1 is the first half of the season that is ending this very Sunday (Sept. 6)  starting at 10 p.m.on Showcase. Why split the 23-episode season into two volumes? According to one guy checking in on amazon.com:
“Greed. FIFTY DOLLAR LIST PRICE ($64.95 Canadian) for eleven episodes?? Assuming Volume 2 does the same for the final 11, that’s ONE HUNDRED DOLLARS for a season! Now we all know there will be discounts (as I type this Amazon is selling it for $32) but that’s still OVER SIXTY DOLLARS to get the fifth season.”
I believe the man has a point.

Here are some other TV releases on DVD:
Supernatural: The Complete Fourth Season
Brothers and Sisters: The Complete Third Season
Desperate Housewives: Teh Complete Fifth Season
Clatterford: The Complete Season 2
Kids in the Hall: Complete SEries Megaset 1989-1994
Ellen: The Complete Season 4

— Denise Duguay

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