Niki Sanders

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Niki Sanders
NikiSanders.jpg
Portrayed by Ali Larter
First appearance Genesis
In-story stats
Known abilities Enhanced strength (synthetic, suppressed)
Formal name Nicole Sanders
Aliases XXXNikki4u, Jessica, Gina
Nicknames Nik, Sugar
Gender
Age 32 (at death)
Date of birth August 24, 1974
Place of birth Beverly Hills, CA
Date of death March 20, 2007
Home Las Vegas, NV
Residence Niki Sanders's home
Occupations Former casino worker and online webcam operator,
former agent of the Company
Significant other D.L. Hawkins (deceased)
Parents Hal Sanders,
Kelly Sullivan
Child Micah Sanders
Siblings Tracy Strauss (estranged triplet sister),
Barbara (estranged triplet sister),
Jessica Sanders (adoptive sister, deceased)
Other relatives Mother-in-law:
Paulette Hawkins (deceased)
Aunt-in-law:
Nana Dawson
Cousins-in-law, once removed:
Damon Dawson
Monica Dawson

Niki Sanders was a former casino worker in Las Vegas. She was raising her son, Micah, alone because her husband D.L. was a fugitive. In the absence of D.L. and his regular paycheck from construction work, she earned extra money as a webcam stripper running lasvegasniki.com. She had an aggressive alter-ego named Jessica, under whose identity violent acts and murders were committed. After the events at Kirby Plaza, Niki worked as an agent of the Company and was infected with the Shanti virus. As the virus progressed, Niki returned to New Orleans to stay with Micah. She was later killed in an explosion after she saved Monica Dawson.

About

Born a triplet with Tracy Strauss and Barbara, Niki was given the ability of enhanced strength at birth by the Dr. Zimmerman. She was placed under the care of the Sanders family and bonded with her sister Jessica. However, her father, Hal Sanders, was abusive and due to this, Niki developed a split personality.

Niki remembered none of the beatings, and was devastated when Jessica was killed. Unbeknownst to Niki, Jessica was accidentally killed by Hal. Upon growing up, Niki lost contact with Hal and grew to resent him and later became an alcoholic. She met D.L. Hawkins and had a son- Micah. However, Niki was approached by Hal Sanders, who tried to make amends for his past actions. Niki's main alter ego, Jessica, however, attacked Hal and sent him away before he could do any harm to Niki or her family.

Character History

Season One

For an episode-by-episode summary, see Niki Sanders: Season One History.

After finishing some work, Niki gets Micah ready for school. When thugs break in, she rushes out with Micah. She speaks with Micah's principal about his enrollment. When she leaves, she sees her reflection moving differently than she is.

Niki doesn't like the other person she sees in the mirror.

Niki takes Micah to Tina's house and returns home. She is confronted by the thugs from earlier, who knock her out. When she awakes, they have been killed. On her way to go get Micah, she blacks out again for several hours. When she returns home she finds a Cadillac with the men's bodies in them. She leaves with Micah to the desert to bury the thugs. After finishing the two go to Micah's grandmother's house. After they leave, Niki is stopped by more of Linderman's men.

Niki then meets with Miss Sakamoto. The two discuss that Linderman will forget her debt if she seduces a certain politician. She drops Micah off and returns to the casino running into the man she is to seduce. She does not go through with the deal, but when she is assaulted by one of Linderman's lackeys she reverts to her alter ego, threatens the man and sleeps with Nathan. The morning after, Miss Sakamoto tells Niki she is now debt free. When she returns home, she finds the police looking for her husband. When they leave, he arrives and the two argue.

When Niki switches back to Jessica, she reveals that is was she that stole Linderman's money. D.L. catches up to her, and the two fight until D.L. knocks her out by phasing into her abdomen. When she awakens D.L. and Micah are gone, and Tina comes to let her know what has happened. Angered, Jessica takes over again, determined to find D.L. She finds them at a cabin in Utah. When she struggles with D.L., she forcefully pushes Micah aside, allowing Niki to regain control. She decides to turn herself in for murder.

Two weeks later, she is in jail waiting for her trial. Because of Jessica's aggression, Niki is thrown into a padded cell. A psychiatrist arrives wanting to see Niki. During the conversation Niki looses control, and when she awakens, Dr. Witherson is unconscious. Aron Malsky arrives to let Niki know she has been released and when she arrives home, Jessica regains control. Niki is helpless when she learns Jessica has become an assassin for Linderman. When she finally regains control, she approaches Nathan, tells him about Linderman's plans and then asks him to knock her out. He happily obliges. Niki convinces Jessica that she needs to save Micah with D.L.'s help. When the two find Linderman, he offers Jessica millions of dollars if she kills D.L. Not having any of this, Niki regains control and embraces D.L. When Linderman shoots at Niki, D.L. takes the bullet, and then kills Linderman.

Niki learns she can use her power on her own.

Niki supports a weakened D.L. When a loud bang is heard, the two phase through a wall. D.L. tells her that she needs to go on her own if she is to rescue Micah. She leaves him and finds Jessica and a dead Micah in a room. The two fight, and when she looks in a reflection, Jessica tells her that the Jessica she is fighting isn't actually her. Niki punches the impostor across the room. Niki rescues Micah and when she looks into a mirror sees only her own reflection. When they go back to D.L., they find Mohinder and Molly. The group goes down to Kirby Plaza thanks to Micah. Outside, Peter and Sylar are fighting. Niki grabs Sylar's parking meter and beats him with it. She then returns to her family to watch the explosion.

Season Two

For an episode-by-episode summary, see Niki Sanders: Season Two History.

After the explosion, Niki is approached by Bob Bishop, who warns her that another split personality will manifest if she does not go with him to receive treatment. Niki refuses, and her new personality--Gina--forms, and leads to D.L.'s murder. Niki, distraught at what she had led to, then agrees to go with Bob. Niki and Micah move on with their lives after telling Niki's dead husband, D.L., goodbye. They later make it to New Orleans so Micah can stay with Nana. Niki explains that she has to go away for a while, but she will return for him.

After arriving at the Company facility, Niki is treated for her split personalities and loss of control over her powers. However, Niki, not in control of her powers, escapes from her confinements, making her way past guards and wreaking havoc. She happens upon Mohinder and Bob, with Mohinder immediately recognizing her and knocks Mohinder into a door. She grabs Bob by the neck in an attempt to strangle him, but Mohinder tases her. Later, Bob assures her that she will be helped with her Multiple Personality Disorder. As Bob leaves, Mohinder attempts to free her, but Niki tells him to stop, explaining that she came of her own free will, even leaving her son behind, so that she can seek aid from the Company.

Niki cannot save herself.

Niki is partnered with Mohinder in the Company, and she explains that Bob had told her of Mohinder's trust issues, and she is there to ensure that there aren't any problems. The next day, Bob warns Niki and Mohinder about an upcoming attack by Maury Parkman. Niki teams up with the pair, along with Matt Parkman and Nathan Petrelli in order to defeat Maury. Bob orders Mohinder to inject Maury with the Company's strain of the Shanti Virus, and Niki goes with Mohinder to retrieve it. However, Maury, who is able to control minds, manages to take control of Niki plagues her with visions of D.L.. The vision of D.L. convinces her to kill Bob and Niki then proceeds to punch Mohinder when he tries to help. Niki then goes after Bob and smashes through a door with her bare hands. However, Niki is talked down by Nathan, though she can't fight off Maury's mind control and injects herself with the virus.

Niki is injected with Mohinder's blood, though it is revealed that her strain of the virus is immune to the cure. After realizing that she would die without a cure, Niki returns to New Orleans to be with Micah. Niki explains that because of the virus, she doesn't have much time to live. Micah's bag is soon stolen, in it D.L.'s medal, and after Niki insists that the police should handle it, Micah and Monica go off to retrieve it themselves. However, Monica is captured by the thugs who stole the medal, and Micah goes to Niki for help. Micah tells his mother that Monica was kidnapped, and they have to save her. After Micah tells his cell phone to track the GPS signal in Monica's cell phone so they can locate her, they find a burning building in which Monica is being held. Niki races in to help her. Niki is able to free Monica from her binds and help her escape the building, but is unable to escape herself. Unfortunately, the fires intensifies and Niki is killed as the building explodes.

One of Us, One of Them

Niki's funeral

Tracy Strauss, travels to New Orleans to discover more about Niki. However, when she arrives at the Dawsons' home, she finds the remnants of Niki's wake, along with her body. After she closes the casket, Micah finds her and realizes that Tracy isn't his mom, but that she looks just like her.

Later, Micah tells his laptop to find information and yield any matches on Tracy and Niki, and one match comes up: a birth record. Tracy leaves Micah, and goes to find Dr. Zimmerman.

I Am Become Death

It is revealed to Tracy Strauss that Niki was a triplet along with her and Barbara. Also, Niki's ability was synthetic and was given to her by Dr. Zimmerman.

Cold Snap

Micah reminds Tracy that she looks exactly like Niki. He realizes that she's a politician and nothing like his mom, and tells her that Niki was "the everyday American, was a hero."

I Am Sylar

Micah tells Sylar that his mother used to change on the inside, that it was creepy but it made her strong.

Graphic Novel:The Natural Order of Things

Niki is remembered as a hero who fought against Sylar in Kirby Plaza.

Graphic Novel:Ice Queen, Part 1

Tracy reminds Micah that she is not Niki, and unlike Niki, she doesn't "burn easily".

Heroes Evolutions

The Agent

In chapter 2 of The Agent, Rachel Mills is searching the web and finds lasvegasniki.com. She mentions that Tracy's triplet sister, Niki, did pornography to keep the food on the table.

Evolved Human Abilities

Niki possessed enhanced strength. She was strong enough to knock down doors and other obstacles with a single hit, throw people several feet across a room, and literally rip people in half. For months, she could only utilize her power through her alternate personality, Jessica, who is much more violent than her normal self. Jessica used the ability in a variety of crimes ranging from robberies to brutal murders.

In How to Stop an Exploding Man, Niki finally learned how to use her enhanced strength at will.

Equipment

  • Cadillac--a 1959 Cadillac Eldorado convertible, taken from D.L.'s crew by Jessica and registered in Niki's name
  • Digital video camera--used to broadcast video chats for lasvegasniki.com; used by Linderman's thugs to record Niki
  • Jessica's map--a map left for Niki by Jessica indicating where to bury the bodies of Linderman's thugs
  • Laptop computer--used to run and maintain lasvegasniki.com
  • Niki's tape--a videocassette of Niki made by Linderman's thugs; it turns to static as Jessica takes control and murders them

Notes

  • While Jessica has a tattoo of The Symbol on her upper right back, Niki does not.
  • Niki and Hal use more formal names for each other: Niki calls her father "Hal", and Hal calls his daughter "Nicole".
  • Niki is on the list.
  • Niki can communicate with her alternate personalities through reflective surfaces: whichever personality is dominant sees the alternate in the reflection. However, Matt Parkman heard thoughts of both personalities via his telepathy during one of their conversations (Run!). Niki and Jessica also communicated in jail sans reflective surface (Godsend). The significance of these unusual occurrences is unknown.
  • According to the cast commentary for Godsend, the cast members themselves believed that it was Niki -- not Jessica -- who broke the guard's baton. However, during the Wizard World Los Angeles panel, the writers entertained the possibility that Niki might "eventually" be able to access Jessica's power, indicating they believed she hadn't done so yet. Her use of enhanced strength in How to Stop an Exploding Man at Jessica's urging made reasonably clear that she had not knowingly accessed her power prior to her fight with Candice Willmer.
  • While a great deal of confusion about Niki and Jessica's relationship persists, Jeph Loeb stated in an interview that the crew "thought this was very clear on the air. Niki's power is the same as her alternate personality Jessica's: unbelievable strength. They're the same person. Niki discovered her special ability through her split personality, but it was always her ability."
  • According to Dr. Zimmerman, Niki's ability is the result of receiving the formula rather than a naturally inherited ability. (I Am Become Death)

Trivia

  • The laptop Niki uses for lasvegasniki.com runs Debian Linux and uses Gaim for instant messaging.
  • Niki never keeps peanut butter in the refrigerator. (Godsend)
  • The ABC Soap Opera One Life to Live is famous for being one of the first serialized dramas to tackle the topic of dissociative identity disorder (DID) in a real and serious way with a beloved lead character. That character was Victoria Lord (Viki), whose most active and dominate alter ego was named Niki. She also had a daughter who, through Niki's carelessness, was traumatized as a child and likewise developed DID. Her name was Jessica, and her main alter ego was named Tess.
  • According to a form found in Linderman's archives, Niki's Social Security number is 2574-87-5698. (The Hard Part)
  • A 2001 medical form for Niki has an address listed at the top: 348 South 4th Street, Portland, Oregon, 97209. It is unclear whether this was once Niki's address or whether this is the address of the form's originator. The medical form also lists Niki's age as 33. According to NBC's press packet, Niki would have been 28 in 2001. However, according to her her birth certificate (found on Micah's computer), Niki was born on August 24, 1974.
  • In New Orleans, Niki drives a Chevrolet with Louisiana license plates KMB801T.
  • According to the birth certificate Micah found on his computer, Niki weighed 6 pounds 14 ounces when she was born. She was born August 24, 1974 at 12:56 am in Beverly Hills at Our Lady of Perpetual Faith Hospital, and she was delivered by Dr. Zimmerman. Interestingly enough, Tracy Strauss's birth certificate lists the exact same information.
  • According to a court record, Nicole Sanders has had felony complaints brought against her for robbery, homocide [sic], and grand theft auto.
  • The same certificate lists Niki's birth mother as "Kelly Sullivan". This name probably came from the assistant to the executive producers with the same name (see Kelly Sullivan).

See Also

Fan Theories

Please refer to Theory:Niki Sanders for fan-created theories and other speculation.

  Season Three Characters edit
Main

Claire BennetNoah BennetMaya HerreraAndo MasahashiHiro NakamuraMatt ParkmanAngela PetrelliNathan PetrelliPeter PetrelliTracy StraussMohinder SureshSylar

Recurring

AnalystLyle BennetSandra BennetElle BishopEmile DankoEric DoyleFlint Gordon, Jr.Meredith GordonThe HaitianKnoxDaniel LindermanDr. LivitzDaphne MillbrookRachel MillsAdam MonroeMr. MugglesKaito NakamuraMatt Parkman, Jr.Maury ParkmanArthur PetrelliMark SpatneySWAT agentTurtleUsutu

See Also: Minor CharactersSeason One CharactersSeason Two CharactersSeason Four CharactersFuture CharactersAnimalsWebisodes Characters
Graphic Novel CharactersiStory CharactersEvolutions CharactersUnaired CharactersCast