Season 4 Episode 5

Hysterical Blindness

Aired Monday 9:00 PM Oct 12, 2009 on NBC

Episode Fan Reviews (27)

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out of 10
482 votes
  • very nice

    I'd still like some action but this episode, wow! Very, very nice. Not since Season One have I been so thrilled over seeing an ability develop, not since Season One have I felt that joy of self-discovery. And for all you cowering in the corner, fearing another OC situation, you can come out. It's okay. Yes, there was the gratitous liplock but for now, Claire is Marissa-free. Besides that useless ratings-grab, this episode was stellar. In this episode, Peter and Emma grow closer together, as do Gretchen and Claire;} as they pledge a sorority, and Sylar's identity remains shattered. Samuel and Carnivale:} share a group breakfast, courtesy of the resident micro-emitter and Samuel gives a toast/obligitory-opening-monologue over how their family will soon be complete and those who are lost will find their way back. In case anyone missed it, we get a nice little repeat of the Sylar-Living-Dead-revival. Sylar is picked up by a patrolling cop (Ernie Hudson), who thinks he's drunk. The cop takes him for interrogation and orders a psychiatrist to evaluate him, the two finding Sylar out of his mind. Literally. Turns out Sylar Durden is actually the real Sylar, all the evil parts anyway, and/or the conscious part of his identity. What's left is not Sylar, it's not even Gabriel, the best way to describe it is that he's Echo from Dollhouse. He's in tabula rasa, a clean slate. A literal newborn. And is just me, or does he look a lot like Peter-Season-One right now? I hope it's not just me. At Peter's loft, he decides to reconnect with Angela. He invited Nathan but we all know Nathan's a no-show. Angela is too preoocupied worrying about "Nathan" while Peter realizes Angela hasn't changed that much. Peter kisses his mom goodbye and goes back to work. At college, Claire marvels over how she'll get the chance to finally be a normal girl. A sorority sister named Rebecca is happy to oblige, begging Claire to join her sorority. Gretchen is uneasy but reluctantly agrees after Claire begs her to pledge with her. Emma is interrupted at work by her nurse/mother, trying to figure out a rational explanation for Emma's power. Emma believes her mother thinks she's crazy. Emma's mother takes time to tell her that it's time she find a better job because she's capable of more, but Emma insists she's happy. Her mom says it's not her fault what happened to her brother. What? Interesting detail for later. Emma skips work and sees sweeping blasts of color from the different noises on the street, from the blast of an ambulance siren to a drill. Ohhhhhh. Overwhelmed, Emma loses vertigo and almost gets hit by a car, when it's Peter to the rescue. Peter tries to connect with her, even grazing her hand, but Emma brushes him off. Peter tries to speed back to work in a hilarious moment that would make Peter Parker proud but finds his speed gone. Frustrated, he kicks a garbage can, seeing colors bounce off it. The psychiatrist and Hudson try to grill Sylar but all he remembers is getting shot and withdraws into jittery, post-traumatic shock. The psychiatrist asks Hudson to leave, trying to make Sylar comfortable. She removes the cuffs and Sylar marvels at how he's a newborn, experiencing everything, the feel of the handcuff, the sharp tang of tea, as if he's experiencing it for the first time. The psychiatrist asks him to focus and Sylar rediscovers his intuitive apitutude, hearing the clicking of the watches and tells the psychiatrist her watch is broken. The psychiatrist views this as a good thing, as something in Sylar's consciousness is still there, he just needs to find it. The psychiatrist promises she'll help. Gretchen-Claire meet potential pledges while Rebecca hosts sorority "speed-dating". Claire fills in her sisters on her fake life and finds out through Rebecca that Gretchen has already gushed over everything save her ability. Claire gets spooked. Peter comes back to work, marveling at the gorgeous vibrations of a childrens' choir. Emma spots Peter and realizes he can see the colors too. Peter confronts her and tells her she has an ability, she's a hero. The obligitory shock and denial commences. She asks why her and Peter replies he doesn't know. Be grateful the writers are ignoring the eclipse explanation. The two marvel at "their" power, sharing in a beautiful piano duet. Peter feels free to ask her to lunch (awwwww!) but Emma balks when he makes a wrong comment about her career as a secretary. Claire gets ready for an evening with the sisters when she starts getting suspicious that Gretchen's another Single-White-Female, since Gretchen "borrowed" her shirt. It doesn't help when a book falls near her laptop, Claire picks it up, and observes that Gretchen has researched Claire and Annie. Claire shrugs Gretchen off, saying they should hang out with new people. Gretchen is crushed. Hudson sends the psychiatrist away after he figures out who Sylar is. Not the hero-serial-killer part, the part where he killed his mother. I have to ask, what logical reason could the police know Sylar killed his mother since the only witnesses were Hiro and Ando, but since the police MIGHT not know about Gabriel being Sylar, I guess the knowledge is likely. Sylar gets upset and confused, insisting he would never do that. Hudson gets steamed, yanking out the camera so he can threaten Sylar into a confession. Frightened, Sylar's telekinesis kicks in and Hudson is flayed out the window, leaving Sylar even more scared and confused. The station goes on lockdown while the psychiatrist gets into a car, where she meets Sylar holding a gun, begging her to help him. Samuel tries tracking Sylar down while Lydia expresses her doubts about Samuel's family plan, expressing greater concern since he has no idea about Sylar. Apparently not. Samuel ignores her, insisting his plan will work out. Claire goes to the sorority party and starts chatting with an ex-cheerleader, when Gretchen spoils everything by dropping a lamp hanger down at them. Claire, finally through, confronts Gretchen over what she knows. Gretchen denies everything, she's not a stalker and she didn't attack the girl at the party. And no, she didn't kill Annie. When Claire asks what's with the Claire-obsession, Gretchen admits she has a crush on Claire, and proves it. Claire stares while the sisters have decided to accept both Gretchen and Claire. Their first trial ensues. The situation gets weird(er) once another relevation kicks in. Rebecca is actually Samuel's invisible (literally) mole, coaxing Claire into joining the "family". And to do that, she's tasked with isolating Claire away from everyone as much as possible. She was the one, obviously, who attacked the ex-cheerleader. She "phased" in Claire's room, making the book fall, so Claire could see the dirt Gretchen pulled up. But Rebecca's actions take a sinister turn when it's revealed she was the one who pushed Annie to her death and she planted the suicide note. Samuel is pleased. He asks Lydia to find him another hero. It takes awhile but Lydia finally locates Sylar. Sylar hides on the seat of the psychiatrist's car, the psychiatrist scared out of her mind he's going to kill her. Sylar promises he won't, he's not like that, he begs her to help him. He's amenesiac, his real identity's sealed inside a psychic cop's mind, and the psychiatrist is the only person that was willing to help him, that believed him, that actually cared for him. Logical. The psychiatrist agrees she'll help him recover his identity but only if he'll turn himself in. Sylar agrees while the cops find them. Hudson asks Sylar to surrender and Sylar consents but his lightning powers accidently activate. Hudson starts firing and both Sylar and psychiatrist go down. Psychiatrist and Sylar are shocked to see him regenerate. Knowing Sylar isn't safe with the cops, she lets him go. Sylar runs through the woods and stumbles into Carnivale, Samuel beckoning him forward. By the time the cops show, Carnivale is gone. Did Samuel move it or what? Anyways, Samuel welcomes Sylar "home". Emma vents her anger over a cello, playing harder and harder as her anger grows, the colors intensifying until eventually, she cuts a swathe through her wall. Whoa. Peter comes home to find Hiro's powers have poofed him there. Hiro shows as much surprise as Peter before he falls unconscious. Wow, I'm really impressed. Very, very nice. What Heroes is lacking in action, it plenty makes up for in great, "normal" drama. There was so much to love in this episode. I love how they're handling Emma and Peter's relationship and the two are taking it one step at a time, they're not being forced as a couple. This is the first time in a long time I actually want Peter to get together with his love-interest. Emma's storyline is handled beautifully and nothing is overdone, and showcases one of the best exhibits of newfound power in awhile. And what's with her past regarding her brother? I'd like to know. This is the first time in years where I've actually been breathtaken at how beautiful superhero powers are and seeing the pure joy in someone discovering this awesome ability. Much applause. I love how Peter's starting to reconnect with his family and even though it bit him pretty hard this time, I hope he tries to continue. It appears his power's flexing with him. Yessss. I've finally warmed to Gretchen a lot more, enough to understand that when it looked like she was the Single White Female, she wasn't. She's not crazy, she's just weird. I'll like her as long as she doesn't go all Olivia Wilde on Claire. Sorry, couldn't help the OC reference. As long as Claire's not turning into Marissa, I'm perfectly okay with her. However, I and many can relax as Heroes hasn't pulled a full-OC. YET. Applause on the actual surpising relevation with Rebecca. (Well, the Biblical name might have given it away anyway.) I just have to ask, what is Samuel's goal exactly with Claire? Get her to back in the corner so bad, she turns bisexual on her roommate? I don't think that's his intention but was is intention? In fact, why is Samuel evil? Yes, he sank the mansion and killed Danko, but nothing as awful as Sylar has already done. So far, he's just a shadowy antihero. Some clarency on the plan would be appreciated. However, I love how casual the carnies are with their powers and how they use it to make breakfast. Hey, if you're a micro-emitter, why not? Seeing Sylar defected at first was unnerving, seeing him in such a raw, uncorrupted state when we're so familiar seeing him as the bloodthirsty, sadistic, psychopathic, take-over-the-world hero-serial killer. It was akward but oddly sweet and in a way, heartbreaking to see him this way, where he's just a normal guy trying to figure it out who he is, even more tragic when you realize that in most liklihood, Sylar as this honestly nice, innocent guy, will not last, as Sylar "Durden" is going to force Matt to put him back into his own mind and the Sylar we all know, for better and worst, will come back in full swing. Until then, it was strange but kind of nice seeing a good Sylar, a person he could have been if he never became evil. Another great thing, he actually didn't not kill anyone in this episode. A nice relief that was long overdue even though it's sure not to last. There are still so many questions lingering throughout the season, I hope everything can be addressed before the end, season-wise and literal. Also, for the highly observant, the symbol made a long overdue comeback. YESSSSSS! Bravo. I couldn't be more impressed. Keep it up, Heroes.