We've all felt a little burned by superpowered soap-comedy Heroes, but we think tonight's midseason premiere deserves one more chance. And to overcome your skepticism, we've compiled not 10, but 63 reasons why. Spoilers!
Here are our reasons to give Heroes a reprieve, in escalating levels of tongue-in-cheekness:
1. Come on! It's a whole new start. It's practically a whole new show, even. They blew up all the boring people at the end of Volume 3. So you can't really judge it according to what's come before. C'mawn.
2. President Worf!
3. Supposedly the good guys are going to work together more, instead of just running around separately.
4. The bad guy is named The Hunter. At least that's a proper supervillain name, as opposed to "Bob." Or "Knox." It's a step in the right direction. Maybe.
5. The return of morally gray badass HRG! Maybe.
6. Daphne and Matt really are kind of a cute couple. Give those kids a break already.
7. We really do want to know more about the secret weird-science program to "create" super-mutants like Nikki, Tracy and Nathan.
8. Sylar's taking another road trip, but this time he has a young totally-not-gay "apprentice" named Luke. Much better than Maya.
9. No more time travel! (Supposedly.)
10. Bryan "Fountain Of Awesome" Fuller is coming back.
11. Supposedly we're going back to basics a bit, with actual characters living their lives and holding down jobs. Until they get hauled off to Super-Gitmo, that is.
12. This time around, the role of creepy patriarch and good-guy-gone-bad is going to Adrian Pasdar, who can probably pull it off with some panache.
13. We'll also be on the edge of our seats wondering if anybody will point out that Nathan is right to want to lock all these people up, given how many times they've all turned evil.
14. Heroes will try to channel BSG, by adding "topical" storylines about the good guys being accused of terrorism and sent to Super-Gitmo.
15. And they hired a real BSG writer, Mark Verheiden.
16. Biker Ando!!
17. More Seth Green cameos are looking highly likely, since only his character understands the show's storyline at this point.
18. Sylar will keep taking his shirt off! We hope.
19. I refuse to believe all that stuff about Claire wanting to be a real hero was not going somewhere. Please?
20. Ando's actual superpower is codependency! With a hint of passive-aggressiveness. Don't you want to see how that's going to play out?
21. The show values its die-hard nerd audience more than ever, and is going to work hard to appeal to those viewers, even as it struggles to win back a broader viewership.
22. That means you're going to get pandered to.
23. Did we mention it's political this time? It's political!
24. If they had the ability to turn Nikki and Tracy into super-mutants in utero, then there could still be a genetically engineered evil mutant army ready to launch a fascist takeover. We want our fascist mutant army!
25. Hiro and Ando are doing Two Men And A Baby.
26. Christopher Eccleston will be in every scene this season. (Okay, he'll be invisible, and he's also taken a vow of silence. But he's there somewhere. We promise!)
27. The turtle will cry if you don't watch.
28. More scenes at the Angry Skunk Bar. Best bar name ever.
29. Claire will probably get more things jammed into her skull at some point.
30. Did I mention Claire's bio-mom is gone?
31. Mr. Muggles will eventually get a superpower.
32. You need an excuse to get drunk on a Monday night.
33. It's not actually true that nobody stays dead on this show. Supposedly Adam/Kensei, Maya's brother, DL, Hiro's dad and a few other people really are dead. We think.
34. They've almost run out of ethnic stereotypes. If the show ends, you'll get a new show, which'll have to start over again, with the nerdy Japanese guy and the African American guy who's on the run from the law.
35. On the other hand, we still haven't had a Russian sex-kitten spy or Chinese computer hacker yet.
36. Maybe the puppetmaster guy will make people dance, like on Star Trek.
37. If you can explain what happened in "Villains," you get a free ice cream cone at Baskin Robbins.* Just imagine what you'll get if you're able to explain what happened in "Fugitives" too.
38. If the show sticks around long enough, Micah will eventually show up again. Not to mention Molly.
39. No more Heroes, no more bizarre dada webisodes.
40. Potential for Nazi zombie subplot.
41. Possibly the only show that regularly features telekinetic underwear fights.
42. Not to mention, maybe Mohinder will get laid again, and celebrate by coating several people with his sticky white residue.
43. And maybe Claire will finally explore her lesbian airborne electro-sex fetish.
44. Here's a list of veteran science fiction actors who haven't yet appeared on the show: Brent Spiner, Lalla Ward, Richard Dean Anderson, Ben Browder, Linda Carter, Wil Wheaton, Martin Landau, that guy from Highlander 2, Jeffrey Combs, Kyle McLachlan, Michael Sheard, Tom Baker, Brad Dourif, Tim Russ, ummm... okay, it's a long list. Why are you trying to deny Tim Russ his chance? Why?
45. More mad scientist porn!
46. And injections!
47. If the show stays on the air long enough, it'll run out of X-Men storylines to, um, borrow from. And then we'll get the Heroes version of "House of M!" Or maybe "Age Of Apocalypse."
48. Actually, with "Fugitives," the show is sort of doing Civil War. Which means World War Hulk is next. Come on, who doesn't want to see Heroes do World War Hulk?
49. Everybody looks good in orange.
50. The show can't die until it reveals that West (the flying boy) was behind everything.
51. Maybe we'll get to see the dark future where everybody uses the formula to get superpowers, and it'll be like a glimpse of what The 4400 would have been like if it hadn't gotten canceled.
52. There will be more awesome viewer comments like this one, on NBC's message board: "just when you think you know what's gonna happen, this show takes a turn for unforseen surprises. i'm just blown away. just one question—whatever happened to the copycat? would like to see more of her."
53. They haven't done a musical episode yet.
54. Or an episode where everyone turns animated.
55. Slim chance we'll get to see Matt and Daphne have ultra-fast sex.
56. Bad guys with even weirder powers, like projectile toenails.
57. Maybe there are more than three Ali Larters after all, and we'll get to see an Ali Larter army at some point.
58. Heroes is the only thing standing between us and more Knight Riders.
59. Let's just go back to how Worf is president. Who's in his cabinet? Is Martok secretary of defense? Is the first pet a Targ? We'll never know, unless the show stays on the air.
60. Tonight's episode is essentially Volume 4, Number one. That's right - it's a first issue. It's like a collector's item. If you watch it, and keep it in mint condition in your brain, you'll eventually be able to sell the memory of watching it for double what you paid. (In other words, you'll get two hours of your life back. Can Lost do that? Actually, maybe Lost can. But most shows can't.)
61. Caitlin the Irish barmaid sacrificed not just her life, but her existence in the causal nexus of reality itself, so you could keep watching this show. Don't make her sacrifice in vain!
62. If Heroes fails, NBC could go under, damaging NBC/Universal, which runs the Sci Fi Channel. And Universal Studios.
63. Worst come to worst, Heroes' failure could affect NBC's parent company GE, and that could cause your toaster to rise up in rebellion against you. Yes, failing to support Heroes could directly lead to the Cylon civil war. It's happened before, after all.
* - This is not true. Do not go to Baskin Robbins and try to obtain a free ice cream this way.