'Heroes' finally canceled: You won't have Sylar to kick around anymore

heroes-sylarImage Credit: Dean Hendler/NBCThe first season of Heroes might be the best season of broadcast TV ever. But Heroes will probably always be remembered more for what came next: three seasons of amnesia, of people losing their powers, of premonition dreams, and of time travel. So, so, so much time travel. (The space-time continuum should sue for damages.) And as for the plot…well, at one point in season 4, Hiro defeated a brain tumor by sword-fighting with a dead man in an imaginary courtroom right next to the stairway to heaven. This morning, NBC announced that, in a rare moment of mercy, it was taking Heroes away to live on a beautiful farm in Kentucky, which is coincidentally the same place your parents sent your dog when he got sick and you never saw him again. By which I mean, Heroes is over.

There are a whole host of complex emotions running through me right now. On one hand, I’m happy that the Heroes cast is finally free. They’re a talented bunch of actors. That’s especially true of Zachary Quinto, who can now officially begin the second act of his career.

But I’m also a little bit sad. As bad as Heroes got, you always got the feeling that it was just one massive reboot away from getting good again. There are few things more satisfying, as a viewer, than seeing a once-great series become great again, before the end. (See: Season 4 of The OC, which rediscovered the season 1 mojo when no one was looking.) I always hoped Heroes would be that kind of series. It wasn’t. There are some rumors of a wrap-up TV movie. Let’s not.

Why don’t we take this opportunity to start erasing the last three years from our memory? Let’s go back to a simpler time, before kooky carnivals and long-lost parents and disappointing season finales. Let’s look at the penultimate episode of season 1, and how it ended with Sylar poised on a rooftop over New York city, casting tiny fire bursts out of his hands with his newly-acquired nuclear powers. “Boom,” he smiled. That’s where I’ll leave Heroes.

PopWatchers, are you sad, happy, or just glad that our long national nightmare is finally over? And does this mean we’ll never get the long-awaited spin-off, The Haitian?

Comments (303 total) Add your comment
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  • Mavis

    This show deserved to be put out of its misery long ago. It had quickly lost it’s luster from the first season. Besides renewing Chuck, this is actually a good decision by NBC.

    • alison

      i hate hayden panettiere

      • Moe

        “The first season of Heroes might be the best season of broadcast TV ever.”
        Are you out of your MIND??? It was good but certainly NOT the best ever! Lost had the best season on TV ever. Heroes was good half of the time (Company Man) but the finale sucked HARD!! That’s why it won’t be the best season on broadcast EVER! Man you must have smoked something to make such a remark!

      • Pete

        I couldn’t agree more. Heroes first season was not the best season on broadcast TV ever, it was incredibly uneven and they ended with a truly lack luster finale. That was pitiful.

      • mac

        Best first seasons:

        1. 24 (everyone should look here to see how to do a season finale)

        2. Lost

        3. Friday Night Lights (how to develop lasting characters worth caring about)

        4. Deadwood
        5. Dexter
        6. The Sopranos

      • mac

        Sorry 1a. The West Wing
        (another great 1st season finale)

      • Billiam

        I can see someone making the argument that Heroes season 1 is the best single season of a show ever, but I would personally put specific seasons of The Office (season 2), Arrested Development (season 1), Lost (most would choose 1 but I would go with 4 or 5), or Veronica Mars (season 1) before Heroes.

      • minister

        Apparently this reviewer has never seen *any* seasons of The Wire, Buffy, Deadwood, Angel, The Sopranos, Battlestar Galactica, The Shield, Friday Night Lights, or Firefly. I mean, you always squeeze in a little hyperbole about the dead guy at a funeral, but that’s a bit much.

      • t3hdow

        Heroes season 1 was great until the last few epsiodes, but like others have stated, it wasn’t the best network TV had to offer.
        I’d choose (not in particular order):
        24 seasons 1 and 5
        Lost seasons 1 and 4
        Dexter season 2
        The Wire seasons 2, 3 and 4 (all superb, though season 4 was especially powerful)
        Prison Break season 1 (though a bit uneven at times)

      • karynll

        Why? Jealous I’d imagine.

      • Nate

        24 has always been a mindless action show with little substance. I can’t help but wonder if the people that think its the best season of TV ever are the same people that think everything on fox news is real.

      • Wes

        Everyone’s comparing the first seasons of LOST and Heroes. Well, let’s compare the final seasons. LOST’s final season was grade-A crap, which is even worse because they knew it was going to be the final season and could tie up all the loose ends and stupid plots over the years that went nowhere or made no sense. But they did not. Even if you’re a fan of LOST, you know my words are true.

      • IHeartHayden

        Who could hate Hayden Pantierre? She is such a sweet person, a good role model (not like some celebrity skanks I could mention) and she is an accomplished actress and singer and actually has talent and a voice for activism. What do you have ALISON?

      • Kevin

        @ alison
        Fri 05/14/10 8:18 PM
        i hate hayden panettiere;
        Probably cause she is 10 times better looking then you.

    • Barry

      Renew Chuck & cancel Heroes. Once again NBC=Nothing But Crap

      • me here

        Never forgive this show for the first season finale… all that hype to an ultimate showdown… that last 5 mins! Come to think of it not much happened in that episode… everything following that sucked!

      • Andre Otherton

        I am not going to defend Heroes…. at least not anymore but I believed it should have had one more season to wrap things up for people like me who held out hope and defended it until the end. And Barry don’t steal Jeff Dunham’s material. He is something that went stall a long time ago. And Chuck is a way crappier show.

      • Joel

        A: Jeff Dunham is not stale (not stall either, whatever that means) and “NBC = Nothing But Crap” is not his material.

        B: Chuck is NOT a crappy show. It is AMAZING, and way better than Heroes. And I, for one, am glad that NBC is keeping Chuck over Heroes.

        C: First season of Heroes was NOT the best season of television ever. Best first season is clearly Lost and then 24, but as for best season period, I couldn’t say with certainty what that would be (though I’m guessing a lot of people would be thinking final season of Shield, Battlestar, and past season of Dexter).

      • STFD

        Couldn’t agree with you more Barry! I’ll miss Heroes.

      • Babs

        I agree. Chuck sucks. I enjoyed Heroes even when it frustrated me.

      • Sophia

        Hero’s was a great show beacuse it was different it was good confusing and different alot of the tv today is similar personally i was sick of crime shows i mean cop shows are great but to much of a good thing gets annoying heros was a breath of fresh air to save you from horrible sufication that would put you in one of those cop shows instead of just watching them heros was a great start for alot of very talented actors and it will be remembered for all the diamonds in the ruff that it brought out and polished there are lots of fabulous shows now and other good ones that have been cancelled recently to so i wave fairwell to all those good shows that got cancelled i wish we could keep all the shows we love going on but since we can’t i say good bye to heros and i will miss it and i wish i knew what they had planned for the end.

    • The Obvious

      The 2nd season of Deadwood might be the best season of TV ever.

      As far as broadcast TV I’d go with season 2 of West Wing.

      • Snsetblaze

        Any season of The Wire or Battlestar Galactica and most seasons of Lost are far better than the first season of Heroes.

      • Tafflander

        Good call The Obvious.. Season 5 of The Shield was immense, also 1 & 2 Arrested Development, Season 2 of Carnivale and pretty much 8 Seasons of E.R.. And theyre AAALLL gone.. Leaving us Two and a half men and Desperate Housewives.. Oh dear god

    • Tony

      If Heroes was On the CW, We wouldve had 10 seasons

      • Joel

        STFU. Smallville (and I know that’s what you’re taking a shot at, so don’t deny it) deserves a tenth season, because this past season has been amazing (and its season finale so far has been not only the best finale of the show, but of this entire season thus far, though I’m expecting that to be broken in the next couple of weeks). Don’t put Heroes and Smallville in the same category. Smallville doesn’t deserve that.

      • katiec

        i completly agree

    • christy

      I don’t think that the writer meant that it was the best season. If you notice through his entire writing, he exaggerates. This writer may be laugh. It was so not to bring you just the news, but make you laugh.

    • adrian

      This series is the best or one of the best series i have watched and they should have never canceled it almost everybody in my family was mad when it got cancelled and still is mad

  • ChrisV

    I’m with you. I hated the final three seasons. I stopped caring, even though I never missed an episode. I kept waiting for the fun to return. Instead, they filled seasons 2 and 3 by quickly introducing, then killing, a number of super-powered beings. The show never quite stated if this was a natural evolution (i.e., mutants), or was purposefully caused by some powerful company. Again, I eventually stopped caring. Yes, I might have to pick up season 1 on DVD, then pretend it ended there.

    • elena

      I watch the season 1 DVDs and think of Heroes as a charming miniseries that ran on a broadcast channel for a while. As cool as David Anders was in the second season, NOTHING will convince me this show was worth watching after Peter exploded. Nothing.

    • julia

      I was pretty upset at how Heroes fell. I mean, I loved the show, and I cried when I found out that it was cancelled. But you’re right. The show lost itself. I was so upset at the fact that we have no idea how these people got their powers. I still want to know. Tim King was brilliant at first, but then he made the show more.. showy and less storyline-y. What happens next? Those like me are left with that endless cliffhanger. I hate that feeling . And while I will always remain a loyal Heroes fan, I myself know that the show had its rise and downfall. I want to say ”Long live Heroes, a truly brilliant show.” but it’s not that anymore. Oh well. Back to watching Doctor Who reruns.

      • julia

        Tim Kring.**

      • Jacqueline

        Heroes was the best show EVER! I cried my eyes out when i found out it was over. Truly adore it, and fell in love with each of the cast. Heroes will live on forever in my mind! HEROES<3

      • Alicia

        I know I am about a year late here but I just started watching the series on Netflix. Most of the main characters powers were explained in the first few episodes as a product of evolution. As for the rest, their DNA was altered after a formula was found to give normal people “abilities.”

  • Rolo

    “The first season of Heroes might be the best season of broadcast TV ever.” No, no it was not.

    • ypc

      LOL. Not even close. Best first season ever is LOST!

      • Business Time

        Best first season ever goes to Friday Night Lights.

      • Allen

        Naah, it was either “Green Acres” or “Family Affair”.

      • RCB

        Yes, it is LOST!

      • Jackson

        The first season of Heroes was way better than the first season of lost, but lost turned in to a way better show than Heroes turned in to

      • Locke

        Yup, it was definitely Lost.

        (Heroes was 2nd place though…)

      • fish

        Actually, the best seasons of broadcast TV were seasons 1 and 2 of “Alias.”

      • Tres.Stars

        Yes Fish….Alias was great. I loved Heroes, but the writers started something they couldn’t finish. They has a wonderful idea, but no one thought the show through.

      • Boo

        You all are idiots. Every single one of you.

      • Sergius

        First season of Mr. Belvedere was way better than any of those.

      • bigsami

        best first series ever was prison break, but lets face it its very rare in any tv series, that the second or however many there is after ever lives up to the first.

    • Jason Williams

      “The first season of Heroes might be the best season of broadcast TV ever.”

      Due to this statement, Darren Franich will never have credibility with me again, even though I hadn’t heard of him until today.

      • thin

        It was good, but yeah, that is one crazy thing to say.

      • Unbelievable

        It really was the dumbest comment I’ve yet to see posted by an EW columnist. And that’s coming from someone who’s had to read his share of Ken Tucker and Owen Gleiberman reviews!

      • graeme

        Um yeah. What a ridiculous statement. I’d give the first season a “B”.

      • Heroesfan

        He’s going by valid information…the first season of Heroes had more viewers per capita than any other show on television at the time. It wasn’t an opinion, it was a statement of fact…sadly, I’m sad to see the series go. Season 4 was actually alot better than 1-3, and I was hoping to see just one more season of my favorite show…I’m still with you Heroes!

    • Jeffrey C

      The first season was very well plotted, with all elements of the story slowly building up to the finale. After that, the show just sank. I’m not sure where they would have gone with season 5, but I doubt it would have regained the brilliance of the first season.

    • Fatima

      This is the single worst statement ever made by this magazine. Heroes was garbage and always was. It was entertaining garbage but garbage none the less. That season 1 happened during Lost’s initial season 3 hiccup made it even worse, with $hitstirring bloggers willing to declare it better and “smarter” than Lost just to get attention. That’s what made the fall actually funny to me. It thought it was greater than it was.

      • tomm

        I agree 100%, EW writers always glow about recent TV shows and movies, as if ‘newer is better’.

        No way would most people think that ‘Heroes season 1 was best in history of the world’

      • Jamie

        I thought I was the only one who remembered EW and others gloating about how much better “Heroes” was in its first season, compared to a slow patch in early season 3 of “Lost.” Because of that, I’m glad things have turned out the way they have, with “Heroes” being canceled, and “Lost” getting a proper finale.

        “Heroes” seemed nothing more to me than a lame “X-Men” ripoff.


        Heroes isn’t garbage… your comment is

        Heroes was great and hopefully one day will continue on…

        Lost was straight garbage after season 1. PERIOD.

        24 never contained the Screenplay, CGI, Acting, or Plot that Heroes had.

        Heroes had it all, and truely has (had) the substance to intice a completely wider range of viewers than a majority of all shows.

        Just because people were too ego-maniacal and wanted the BANG BANG episodes, ultimately lacking the understanding and where-with-all to appreciate the series is why some hate on the show.

        Go back and watch the series with just half a brain and you will miss half the substance… Open your mind and truely focus on what the show is and you will see why there are so many Fans devastated that we get to watch shows like Chuck instead

    • Kalie

      That’s hilarious! If the 1st season of “Heroes” was the best season of a TV show ever, I’d throw out my television set and give up on TV completely.

    • Vicky

      I just sold the first season DVD set at a garage sale for 10 bucks! It was a gift (I did like the first season, but best season of a TV is laughable), so yay profit!

    • Chaz Winterbottom

      Bwahahahahaha! I liked the first season well enough but lets get something straight, it was by no means an example of great television. It was nothing more than a fun guilty pleasure. Let’s just leave it at that.

      • Paul

        You’re right, it’s leaps and bounds better than Season 4 of The Wire

    • InMourning

      I don’t care what any of you say. I truly loved that show for not just season 1 but all of them. Maybe my expectations were low but I felt satisfied after watching almost every episode. All haters should find something productive to do with their life instead of spending it hating on EW!

      • moliterni

        it’s productive to clarify that people shouldn’t make broad sweeping FALSE statements just to fill up space in their story.

      • Tony

        There is still this little thing called opinion, right? Or does that not exist in the land of internet message boards?

    • Anita

      You’ve got to be kidding. I’ll take any season of Battlestar Gallactica, or vintage Sopranos, The Wire…

      • A T

        The last season of Sopranos was absolutely terrible, especially given the fact that it took about two years to finish. Heroes was very good and got screwed by the strike, season 2 wasn’t bad, just not great… but the rest did suck. I just kept watching because I knew how good the show “could” be, just like Sopranos.

      • Darwin

        I only really liked the first 3 seasons of the Sopranos. The last few weren’t as good.

    • Eric

      Yeah a lot of people gripe about how bad the show got (and it did), but it was never great. A great show would have had a twist, something unexpected. “Save the cheerleader, save the world” is the dumbest tagline ever. I wish that everyone thought the tagline meant Claire and it actually meant her frenemy on the squad who Sylar killed. But no, for some reason Claire is the key to everything and no one ever acts like a person on the show.

    • EAP

      oh, EW. The first season of HEROES was not better than the first seaon of LOST, it was not better than the first season of Friday Night Lights, it was not better than the first season of Veronica Mars, it was not better than the first season of Grey’s Anatomy, it was not better than the first season of ER, it was not better than the first season of Prison Break, it was not better than the first season of Vampire Diaries, it was not better than the first season of Supernatural. And it was not great, it was OK. Period.

    • Chelsea

      I’ll agree that it’s a bit of an overstatement to call it the best first season ever, although I did think it was pretty freaking awesome. Lost though? Really guys? The pilot and some of the first season episodes were remarkable but it suffered from those character-centric episodes of flashbacks. If the character was interesting, the episode was. If they were say Kate (or Jack) though, the episode was often dull. Some of Lost’s episodes are among the best in TV but that first season does not take the cake overall.

      • ani

        totally disagree. what was great about the 1st season of lost was the amazing character development, the immense thought that was put into each episode in terms of present time and flashbacks (and later, flash forwards and sideways). The 1st season of Lost was like nothing I’d seen before in those days. So no, it’s not an overstatement to say Lost’s 1st season was one of the best ever. Heroes’ 1st season was awesome as well, but not at all comparable.

    • Sophie

      well, to me it was my feeling at the time. I couldn’t wait for next episode!! After season 1 the show was just drawning.
      But to me it was way better than 1st season of lost but again, i’ve never been a real fan of lost

  • Kimmie G

    I hear you! I loved that first season so much, and frankly, watched the final three out of obligation for my affection for the actors. I’m glad they’ll all be able to move on to other projects! Let’s hope NBC does something good with that hour!!

  • devonbanks

    oh man, i always forget about how great that fourth season of the oc was.

    • Theodore

      I loved the OC season 4. The show was 10 times better after they killed off Mischa Barton’s character. Autumn Reeser was great during that last season.

  • Austin

    Totally agree, Darren. I was so hoping that it would be cancelled so I wouldn’t have to dwell on how bad it’s gotten for one more season. But now that it’s really and truly gone, I’m a little sad. It was just so good at the beginning.

  • man

    Thank God! That show stopped being good a long time ago.

  • binderclip

    FINALLY!!! heres’ hoping Sylar/Zachary rears his head somewhere better suited to his immense talent.
    What am really bummed about … Better Off Ted! awwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww

  • Bill

    “The first season of Heroes might be the best season of broadcast TV ever.” Hahahahahaha. What? Really? You’re not joking? What a ridiculous statement. This show was always horrible.

  • Jenn

    *shrugs* I liked it all, and don’t really see much of a difference between season 1 and 4 other than a progression. Granted, some of the new characters introduced along the way annoyed (cue Mexican twins), but all in all I think it was all pretty fun. I am however glad they stopped here; when I watched the season 4 finale, I found myself really liking the symmetry of the ending without a pressing need to continue to force feed us what might happen next. A great ending to a great show, a show that I really don’t think deserved some of the short-attention-span-driven-hating that it got along the way…

    • MsSuniDaze

      I agree. The finale was a nice end to the show without this huge cliffhanger. Let’s face it, Heroes was a let down in the finale/cliffhanger department. It got very frustrating with the storylines and the crazy back and forth character arcs, but I continued to watch. It was no way as compelling as Lost, but it was entertaining (even if it was sometimes on the lines of MST3000 entertaining).

  • arryana

    loved the first season, put up with the second season and finally realized that this show was the TV equivalent of a c*ck tease so i moved on. RIP ‘heroes’…you gave me some good times but not near enough what i wanted from you.

    • joe

      I’ll give you a c*cktease

      • Chaz Winterbottom

        What a zing.

  • joe

    I always thought they’d somehow be able to tie Sylar still keeping the transforming capabilities and somehow bring Nathan back so that the storyline from the first (or was it second) season in the future with Nathan being president, could still happen. WHERE THE F DOES THE SCAR COME FROM ON PETER?

    • kathleen

      Peter only got the scar if NYC blew up.

      • Jim

        Yeah Joe. This is just another example of how great the show could’ve been. I enjoyed Heroes but they just dragged it out too far. Not enough meat.

    • darlalane

      That’s what was little confusing with the past and the future all the tine and the future kept changing cuz they kept going to future to change it that’s why in some parts didn’t come true in the future

  • WingsStef

    Heroes was beyond amazing the first season. The second season though was also pretty good in my opinion. Both volumes in season 3 were a mess. (Had some promise with Jesse but then fell apart with the presence of several plot holes) Last season was better but still blah in some ways. (Namely the brain tumor.)

  • George

    I liked Heroes, and am sorry to see it go.

    Yes, the latter seasons were weak, but I was hoping for it to regain its original momentum in future seasons.

    • A.F. for EW

      Right on, George! I think it was a terrible shame the way Heroes lost its way after season 1.

      I will especially miss the “Hiro” character; he was like a human teddy bear!


      • darlalane

        I agree I loved him.. he so funny… sylar my fave

    • darlalane

      Me too…. makes me sad that its over … the ending made me mad lol..

  • michael

    I liked the cheerleader.

    • Trigger

      Are you kidding I watched the first season of 24 and laughed because Jack Bauer was some BA but his wife and daughter got kidnapped like 4 times in that season thats a 24 hour period Cmon. And I think everyone is missing the point in the first place he said might that means that it is all opinion so if you’re going to say that someone opinion is wrong than you are ignorant.

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