Episode:Five Years Gone
|Five Years Gone|
|First aired:||April 30, 2007|
|Written by:||Joe Pokaski|
|Directed by:||Paul Edwards|
|Next episode:||The Hard Part|
- Hiro and Ando experience the future timeline in which the explosion wasn't stopped.
- The President makes a serious decision with drastic consequences.
- Constantly on the run, Claire tries to lead a normal life.
- Peter must make a choice between trying to change the past and living in the present.
- Mohinder, now a government worker, is a reluctant persecutor of evolved humans.
- Homeland Security Director Matt shows no qualms about persecuting evolved humans.
- Future Hiro teaches his present-day self what he must do to prevent the explosion.
Five years in the future, Hiro and Ando enter Isaac's apartment and find an elaborate series of strings and pictures hanging from the ceiling. Hiro calls out for Isaac, but gets no answer. He hears the sound of a sword being unsheathed, investigates, and finds Future Hiro. Future Hiro tells him that he's not supposed to be here and tells Ando and him that the explosion still happened even though everything was supposed to change. He explains that five years ago, Sylar exploded in New York City and changed the world. Ando asks about the strings and pictures hanging from the ceiling and Future Hiro explains that it's a map that he's been working on for years of the events that led up to the explosion. He explains that he used it to find the precise point in time to travel to in order to change the future and prevent the explosion. He mentions saving the cheerleader and Hiro tells him that Peter did indeed save the cheerleader. Future Hiro asks Hiro if he was able to kill Sylar now that he doesn't have Claire's power, but Hiro tells him he hasn't killed Sylar. Future Hiro tells Hiro that he needs to return him to his time and that on the day of the explosion, he needs to kill Sylar. Future Hiro shows how Hiro and Sylar's strings cross on the day after the election. Future Hiro explains that on that day, he stabbed Sylar, but Sylar regenerated using the ability he had stolen from Claire. Concerned, Hiro tells Future Hiro that he can't control his powers, and if he tries to use them he could end up anywhere. Suddenly, an armed team breaks into Isaac's apartment and one of them, the Haitian, seizes Hiro. Ando manages to escape along with Future Hiro. Subsequently Matt Parkman enters and recognizes Hiro. He tells the others to go after Hiro's friends. Future Hiro explains that the armed team was from Homeland Security and that they're taking Hiro to a holding facility with other terrorists. Ando asks why they'd think Hiro was a terrorist, and then realizes that it's because of Future Hiro. Future Hiro explains that after the explosion the world became a dark place and that they need to get Hiro back so he can kill Sylar in the past. When Ando suggests that Future Hiro freeze time and teleport, Future Hiro explains that the Haitian is able to stop his powers. He tells Ando that there's only one person who can help them get Hiro: Peter Petrelli.
Future Hiro and Ando enter an exotic dancer bar in Las Vegas. Ando asks if they're going to find Peter here and Future Hiro tells him that his girlfriend is here. They take a seat and watch as a dancer named Jessica, who is actually Niki, walks out on stage. Ando recognizes her and gets excited. Niki notices Future Hiro and is displeased. Irritated, she meets them at a booth and tells them she'll give them a few minutes and then they need to leave. Future Hiro tells Niki that he needs to find Peter, but Niki tells him that the war's over and that Peter isn't interested in helping him. Future Hiro tells Niki that he's trying to stop Sylar. Niki tells him not to mention Sylar again or she'll break his neck. As she walks away, Future Hiro asks her if she knows where Bennet is. She tells him that she believes he's still in Texas. Niki takes a seat at the bar and has a drink. A drink slides down the bar next to Niki and then Peter fades into visibility sitting next to her. He asks Niki what Future Hiro wanted and she explains that he's still trying to stop Sylar. Peter remarks that Sylar is dead. She tells him that she sent him off to Mr. Bennet and that he can deal with them. They watch memorial footage from the day of the explosion. Niki claims that there isn't anything special about the day, but Peter says she lost her son. She claims that she's trying to let go and that he should try it unless he'd rather go with Future Hiro and fight instead. He tells Niki that he's not going anywhere and kisses her.
At the Homeland Security holding facility, Hiro tries to explain that this is just a misunderstanding. Matt reads off Hiro's file which includes incidents of prison breaks and attacks against U.S. interests. He tells Hiro that Hiro killed a lot of men two years ago when he attacked the National Science Center in Raleigh. Hiro tells Matt that he knows himself and that he's not a killer. Matt reads Hiro's thoughts and asks why he doesn't remember the attack. Matt tells Hiro that people like him and Sylar ruined things for everyone else with special abilities by being a threat. He reads Hiro's mind again and tells him that he doesn't know what Hiro is hiding, but he'll find out.
Matt speaks to Nathan over the phone and tells him that they caught Hiro. Nathan claims that they've been after him for years and doesn't think it's a coincidence that they caught him just before the anniversary of the explosion. Nathan suspects Hiro is up to something and tells Matt to find out what. Matt explains that Hiro doesn't appear to remember anything from the past 5 years. Nathan reminds Matt that he's a mind-reader and tells him to "rip it out of him."
In the Oval Office of the White House, Nathan calls for Mohinder over the intercom. Mohinder enters the office and Nathan tells him that they've captured Hiro. Nathan tells Mohinder that they're running into some problems and tells Mohinder that he's the only one he trusts. Mohinder tells him that he'll take the first flight to New York. Nathan tells Mohinder that they allowed a man to blow up New York five years ago and that afterwards they made a vow to eliminate the danger of another such event at any cost. Nathan reminds Mohinder that billions in research have been spent and asks how close they are to achieving that vow. Mohinder explains that very little progress has been made and that the genetic anomalies are hardcoded in the DNA of people with special abilities so it can't be changed. Nathan asks if they've failed and Mohinder begins to discuss the alternate measures that have been put into place to mitigate the danger, but Nathan tells him that they're not working--the population of evolved humans is increasing, and their attacks are continuing. Nathan tells Mohinder about a report from the other day where a boy in Santa Cruz sucked the oxygen out of the air and suffocated his entire middle school. He tells Mohinder that the number of incidents is increasing and that people are expecting another "Sylar." He points out to Mohinder that in his initial report Mohinder mentioned another potential solution: extinction. Mohinder explains that he was talking about extinction as part of nature, but that what Nathan's referring to is genocide. Nathan claims that they're running out of options and that they need to put and end to the threat. Mohinder reminds Nathan that he's an evolved human as well. Nathan thanks him for keeping his ability a secret, but argues that being able to fly is hardly a threat. He asks Mohinder if he was given even 20 more years if he would be able to reverse the anomalies causing these abilities. Mohinder admits that he probably couldn't and Nathan tells him that they need to think about "plan B".
Back at the holding facility, Matt continues punching Hiro and asking him what he's planning. Hiro asks Matt why he wants to hurt "special" people if he's "special", too. Matt gets a call on his phone about Mohinder and leaves, telling the Haitian to watch Hiro.
In Isaac's apartment, Mohinder examines the time map.
At Primatech Paper Company Mr. Bennet performs a blood test on a boy while telling him and his parents that if the test pad turns red then he's "one of them" and will be arrested, but that if it turns blue he'll be free to go. He presses his finger onto the pad and it turns red. Hana gives the family a document with new identities--they're to become the Cranes from Boise--as well as samples of blood that can be used to fool the tests. She escorts the family out and Mr. Bennet tells the father to do whatever it takes to protect the boy. Future Hiro and Ando appear outside. Mr. Bennet hands a list of people back to Future Hiro and tells him that people come to him to help stay hidden and that Future Hiro is asking him to do the opposite. Future Hiro explains that he needs their help to get into the Homeland Security holding facility and that he's only asking for the people he brought to Mr. Bennet himself (D.L. Hawkins, Candice Willmer, Molly Walker). Mr. Bennet tells Future Hiro that he can't help him. As Mr. Bennet is about to leave, Ando tells him that Hiro saved his daughter's life. Future Hiro explains that five years ago, he asked Peter to save Claire from Sylar at Homecoming. He takes the list from Future Hiro and tells them he'll see what he can do.
In Isaac's apartment, Mohinder explains the time map to Matt and tells him it's a living map of the past. Matt asks why a terrorist would care about the past and Mohinder says that in theory Hiro can fold time as well as space and may think he can change the past. Mohinder asks if Matt ever wished he could change the past. He replies that wishing and making something happen are completely different, but Mohinder tells him that it might not be for Hiro. Looking at the map, Mohinder finds that the day of the explosion and the day that he received his father's ashes both seem to be focal points. He remembers that it was the same day that he was with Peter when Peter claimed that he saw a man who could freeze time. He tells Matt that Future Hiro had a message for Peter on that day: Save the cheerleader, save the world.
At the Burnt Toast Diner, Claire serves two people their food. Claire hears the television mention the president and stops to watch the video of Nathan. A man walks up to her, addresses her as Sandra, and tells her that she perks up whenever the president is on television despite claiming to hate him. He tells her that it might make a guy jealous. Claire tells him that Nathan is old enough to be her father. He asks her what she thought of the place they're planning to hold their wedding reception, but she tells him that she forgot to check it out. He expresses concern that she might be having second thoughts about the wedding, but she allays his fears and he kisses her. He tells Claire that the "creepy guy with glasses" is back sitting in Claire's section. Claire looks and sees Mr. Bennet. Claire and Mr. Bennet feign conversation so as to not draw suspicion and then he tells Claire that someone knows about her, it's no longer safe, and that she needs to pick up and leave again. She asks what she's supposed to tell Andy, and Mr. Bennet tells her to say nothing to him. She tells Mr. Bennet that they're getting married and that she just wants a normal life. He explains that he's trying to provide her a normal life, but it's not safe there anymore. He looks at the television and sees a news report claiming that 200 undocumented people have been arrested, including the people he helped earlier. The news claims that this was the most successful operation since the Linderman Act was passed four years ago.
Future Hiro explains how several of the people on his list would be able to help them get inside the holding facility. Ando asks where he is in the future and whether he became rich and famous, but Future Hiro says he can't tell him. He stands up and tells Ando there's something he needs to tell him. Suddenly he is shot by Matt with a taser and knocked out. Ando is seized by an officer. Matt examines Future Hiro and remarks that they already caught him. He realizes that there are indeed two Hiros and that he actually can travel through time. Suddenly, Peter fades into visibility, running into the room. He telekinetically throws one officer into the air. As the officers draw their weapons, Peter concentrates and stops time. He grabs Future Hiro's sword and glares at Matt momentarily. Touching Ando and Future Hiro he teleports them away. When time resumes, the officer in the air hits the floor and then looks around for Peter. Finding the suspects gone, Matt gets frustrated.
Mr. Bennet returns to Primatech Paper to find the office disheveled. Matt tells Mr. Bennet that his friends got away, but Mr. Bennet tells him that if they were his friends, he wouldn't have called Matt. Mr. Bennet reiterates the deal they have: he'll help Matt find the dangerous refugees as long as Matt lets him help the harmless ones. Matt tells him that they both have children with abilities, but that his isn't the president's daughter. He asks Mr. Bennet if he's heard from Janice and Bennet gives him a drawing his son made and tells him he did the right thing. Mr. Bennet finds Hana on the floor, shot in the head. Matt grabs Mr. Bennet, pushes him down on the desk, and tells him that he's terminating their agreement. He explains that he's got to tell the president that there are two Hiros and that one of them got away, so he wants to know where Claire is so he can bring her to him. He reads Mr. Bennet's thoughts and gets his answer before shooting Mr. Bennet.
At the Burnt Toast Diner, Claire tells Andy that she wants to elope. He tells her that she's crazy and she tells him she has her reasons. She asks if he'll do it and he tells her that he'll do anything for her. She offers all the patrons more coffee and asks the final one if he'd like to order. He drops his menu--it's Matt, who alarms Claire by addressing her by her real name.
At the holding facility Mohinder asks Hiro what is meant by "Save the cheerleader, save the world." He tells Hiro that five years ago he was on a subway with Peter and that someone stopped time. He explains that they were on their way to see Isaac Mendez and shows Hiro one of the new 9th Wonders! comics Isaac drew. He tells Hiro that the events he drew were very accurate, except that the events in the latest comic didn't unfold as Isaac predicted. Hiro sees a frame in the comic showing him stabbing Sylar with his sword. Mohinder asks Hiro if he's trying to change the past and kill Sylar. Hiro asks him if he could save millions of lives, wouldn't he do it, too?
Peter asks Ando if it's really him. When Ando asks why he's surprised to see him, Peter explains that in the past Ando died in the explosion. He tells Ando that Hiro's change in behavior began the day he died and that he believes that Future Hiro's obsession with changing history is because he wants to save Ando. Niki arrives, sees them all together, and leaves in protest.
In Isaac's apartment Mohinder explains to Nathan that Hiro is trying to kill Sylar before he explodes. He tells Nathan that without Sylar the world would never have considered people with abilities to be dangerous and the past would be changed. He cuts the string representing Sylar and all the other strings fall to the ground. Nathan tells him that he needs answers now and can't rely on someone changing the past. Mohinder tells Nathan that genocide is wrong. Nathan tells him that he was elected to make hard decisions and that he's going to lie and announce that they have developed a treatment to cure the genetic anomalies. He explains that once people start dying, they'll be united in grief, and then just united. He asks Mohinder if he can trust him, and Mohinder tells him that he can. Matt enters and tells Nathan that there are two Hiros and that they have the younger one. Matt tells him that he wants to kill Hiro, but Nathan tells Mohinder to do it instead. He also tells Nathan that he found Claire.
In the Petrelli Mansion, Claire looks at some photos on the mantle. Nathan arrives and tells her that he thought she was dead and that she has no idea how important she is to him. She blames Nathan for making everyone afraid of people with abilities. Nathan claims that he simply made everyone aware of them and that fear is a natural response. He tells her that evolved humans are more powerful and more important and that they're "special." She asks him who he is to say who's special and who's not. He grabs her by the arm and tells her that he's the president and that for all he knows he's the most special person there is. He tells her that he's found enough power and met a lot of special people, such as Candice, whom he claims allowed him to become president. He tells her that he's done and just wants to eliminate the competition. He tells her that he doesn't need any more power especially after her. She turns to leave, but Nathan raises his hand and stops her telekinetically. He slices her head open telekinetically and Claire manages to utter the name 'Sylar'. Sylar drops his illusion, revealing that he's been impersonating Nathan the whole time. He tells her he's waited a long time for this.
Future Hiro regains consciousness and talks to Ando. Ando tells Future Hiro that he became everything he wanted, however all that happened to Ando was that he died. Future Hiro tells Ando that he fought many battles, but they weren't as fun without Ando.
Niki asks Peter if he remembers his promise and asks why he can't just let the past go. Peter accuses Niki of being the one who can't let go since she gets on stage every night calling herself Jessica. He tells her that she can look into the mirror, but nobody is looking back at her and that Jessica, D.L. and Micah are all gone. She tells him that Jessica was right when she said she should only look after herself. Peter tells her that she's wrong, but Niki asks why he's in a hurry to leave her. He tells her he's not leaving and that he'll be back, but that he has his reasons for helping Future Hiro. Niki pushes Peter for an answer and Peter reveals that it was actually he that exploded in New York, killing everyone, and that Nathan lied to protect him. Niki tells him that if he walks out the door he shouldn't come back. Peter leaves anyway and tells Future Hiro that they need to go fix things.
At a memorial celebration in New York, Nathan gives a commemoration speech. Inside the holding facility the security guards are watching the speech when they suddenly notice Peter, Future Hiro, and Ando standing in front of them. The guards set off an alarm and draw their weapons while backing away. A number of armed officers take positions and aim at them. Future Hiro asks Peter if they should freeze time, but Peter suggests they don't and tells him that he hasn't had a good fight in years. Hiro draws his sword and Peter runs off while leaving Ando standing alone. As Nathan continues his speech, Peter and Future Hiro eliminate the guards one by one. Future Hiro explains that the Haitian is upstairs and will block their powers, so they need to take him out. Ando tells them that the guards will be waiting upstairs with guns. Upstairs, a team of armed officers take up a position guarding the elevator door. Matt gives them orders to shoot on sight. As Nathan announces that a treatment has been discovered that will reverse the genetic code, the Haitian is preparing Hiro to be executed while Mohinder prepares a syringe. Future Hiro enters the elevator. Mohinder approaches Hiro with the syringe. The elevator arrives upstairs and opens, but no one is inside.
Hiro pleads for his life and tells Mohinder that he needs to go back to stop the explosion. Mohinder says he's sorry and then injects the Haitian with the syringe instead. Mohinder helps Hiro escape. Hiro asks why he's helping him and Mohinder tells him that he believes he's supposed to and shows Hiro part of the new 9th Wonders! comic. Mohinder tells Hiro he'll take him to safety. He opens a door and finds Future Hiro outside. Future Hiro places his sword at Mohinder's neck, but Hiro tells him that he's a good guy and not to kill him. Peter follows and is attacked briefly by an officer before throwing him against the wall forcefully. Ando follows and reunites with Hiro. Future Hiro tells him he needs to go back now, but Hiro explains that he can't control his power. Future Hiro offers to take him back, but is suddenly shot in the back twice by Matt. Peter telekinetically closes the door, keeping Matt out. Matt has a team of officers prepare to break down the door as he makes a call to Nathan who is still at the memorial celebration. Matt tells Nathan that the Haitian is dead and that they can't get to Hiro because Peter is keeping them out. Nathan hangs up the phone, jumps into the air, and flies off. Before Future Hiro dies, he gives Ando a few pages from a comic. Ando tells Hiro that they need to get out of there, but Hiro is stunned watching Future Hiro die. Peter stands by the door, but Nathan phases his hand through the door and pulls him through. He tells Matt to get into the room and end this. Nathan turns to Peter and Peter says that his brother can't walk through walls and asks who he is. Sylar drops the illusion and tells him he's an old friend. Peter tells Sylar that he's going to pay for what he did to Nathan and what he did using Nathan's name. Sylar's hand starts glowing blue, manifesting his cryokinetic powers, as he tells Peter that Nathan had already turned against his own kind when he killed him. Peter calls him a liar and creates fire in his hands. Peter and Sylar battle outside while Ando convinces Hiro that he has the ability to get them out of there. Mohinder tries to hold the door shut, but the energy of the battle outside is almost too much. Hiro concentrates and manages to teleport back to the present. He looks at the comic showing him killing Sylar and says, "Now the hard part" before pushing his glasses up.
"Because it was me! The bomb--it was me. I killed all those people. I killed Micah."
"How can you not remember that?"
"Because I have no idea what you are talking about."
"Should we freeze time?"
"Nah, I haven't had a good fight in years."
"No! Future me, he is good guy!"
"Do you remember how he used be all full of hope and optimism?
"Of course, that's the Hiro I know."
"It went away the day you died. Between you and me, I think you're the reason why he became so obsessed with changing it all back. He wants to save you."
- This is the first time Adrian Pasdar appears as Sylar.
- Hiro Nakamura is the only main character to appear as his present self, outside of the photos used in Isaac's loft.
- The song playing while Future Niki is dancing in the strip club is the song "Train" by the band Goldfrapp.
- While we find out what happens to many of the characters, Mr. Linderman is curiously absent from this episode.
- This episode was formerly known as "String Theory". That title, instead, became the name of the 30th chapter in the graphic novels.
- According to Greg Beeman's blog, the Oval Office set was the same one used for The West Wing. However, the episode's commentators claim it's the set from the movie Dave because the West Wing set was unavailable.
- Mohinder's facial hair changes between scenes from short and thin to short and thick.
- When Sylar brings up Mohinder's reluctant suggestion of eliminating all evolved humans, Sylar tells Mohinder, "I understand how things work," which is a reference to Sylar's innate ability.
- A driver license auctioned by NBC lists one of Claire's fake names as "Sarah McBride" from Michigan.
- While disguised as Nathan Petrelli Sylar says to Peter, "Brother vs. brother--almost biblical." Sylar was initially referring to Nathan and Peter being brothers, though it is ironic that later in the show Sylar and Peter were told they too were actually brothers. Although Angela dismisses the rumor in Dual, further on Sylar is made to believe he is Nathan. Once again, Angela eventually tells them the truth.
- This is the first episode to feature scenes between series regulars Sendhil Ramamurthy and Greg Grunberg, Ali Larter and Milo Ventimiglia, Sendhil Ramamurthy and Masi Oka, and Ali Larter and Masi Oka.
- The events that led up to Future Hiro meeting Present Hiro are told in the graphic novel String Theory, but from Future Hiro's perspective.
- For images from Five Years Gone, see images from Five Years Gone.
- For the transcript from Five Years Gone, see the Five Years Gone transcript.
- For conceptual sketches from Five Years Gone, see here.
- For an interview in which director of photography Nate Goodman discusses his work on Five Years Gone, see here.