Theory:Barbara

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The following fan theories are about Barbara.

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Theories

Theory Citations Notes
Barbara is the one in Angela's dream. None + Tracy seems too good to turn to a villain, Barbara on the other hand is still unaccounted for.

- If the dream is just symbolic, the woman might not be a villain, but just the person who turns her son Nathan against her.
+ The woman in Angela's dream is not wearing a pearl necklace, which Tracy has not been seen without (she didn't even take it off when she slept with Nathan).

- This may just be a consistency error.
+ Seems unlikely considering their consistency with her pearls so far.
- The dream scene was filmed for Season 2, long before Tracy's other scenes.

- Tracy worked for Pinehearst, like most of the other villains.
+ There were no frozen bodies in Angela's dream.

Barbara has a mental ability, like telepathy or mental manipulation. None Her two birth sisters, Niki Sanders and Tracy Strauss, have very dissimilar abilities, with one being physical (enhanced strength) and the other being elemental/energy-based (freezing). There may have been an effort to keep the sisters' abilities different from each other, which would make sense if they were being used in an experiment, as it would allow Dr. Zimmerman and his colleagues to test more variations of "induced" abilities. In that case, a mind-based power would make sense for Barbara, as it would be quite different from both Niki's and Tracy's abilities.

- There's already a villain who is a telepath. If Barbara is meant to be a villain, then it's unlikely that a new character would possess the ability of someone who is still alive and on the same side (Knox has a variant of Niki's ability because she's no longer around).

West has the same ability as Nathan, and they were, even in some of the same episodes together during his (West's) appearances.
Echo DeMille and Jesse Murphy both were villains and both were trapped in Level 5. Both possessed the same ability.

Jesse was initially supposed to have earthquake generation as an ability, but the producers thought this would be too expensive to shoot, and so gave him an ability similar to Echo's at the last minute.
+ Peter and Claire are both killed in Angela's dream, despite the fact that they both possess the ability to regenerate. If Barbara is the triplet in the dream and her power is similar to the Haitian's, this would explain how their deaths are possible.

The only confirmed methods of killing regenerative humans are by a) preventing their regeneration with mental manipulation (as seen with Future Peter in I Am Become Death) or b) preventing their regeneration with power absorption (as seen with Adam Monroe in Dying of the Light.) Decapitation has been presented as a postulate but this seems unlikely when one considers that regenerative humans can apparently survive the full force of a nuclear blast, which should destroy their head in the process of destroying the rest of their body and thus should be just as effective as decapitation if not more so. Death by gravitational manipulation seems more plausible, but is untested as of the current episode.
Daphne may have carried Claire away the Costa Verde explosion.
Barbara is a Level 5 escapee. None - There are said to be twelve Level 5 escapees. Twelve to fourteen of them have been shown.

+ If her and the German know each other then it's possible that they committed a crime together that landed them in Level 5.

- Bianca and Gael captured only the German.
+ Barbara may have escaped capture from Bianca and Gael, but gotten caught at a later date.

+ She may have been the triplet in the group of villains Angela Petrelli foresaw.
+ You gotta admit, if Tracy plays for the side of good, having Barbara on the dark side would make a good plot line.

Hypothetically, if Tracy were to play the role of light, while Niki's remorse over her alters actions leaving her morally gray, then Barbara by default would represent darkness.
Barbara has an ability that Future Peter has, but present Peter has not come into contact with yet, such as illusion or body insertion. None + It is almost certain Barbara has an ability.

+ Candice died, possibly before Peter came in contact with her.

+ As above theory, illusion would fit in with a mental ability.
- Peter could've absorbed Candice's ability at Kirby Plaza, as he did with D.L.'s phasing.
+ Candice could have dragged Sylar away from Kirby Plaza after Peter and Nathan flew into the sky.

+ Living in the exposed future, Future Peter has probably been exposed to have power in existence.

Barbara's power is super speed. Dr. Zimmerman, when talking about his power formula utters "Super strength, super speed, something like that?" - Most evolved humans don't gain their powers until they are teenagers, so chances are Dr. Zimmerman did not keep track of Barbara, Tracy or Niki for that long. He was most likely guessing.
+ There was a picture of Dr. Zimmerman and someone who is likely Barbara in Dr. Zimmerman's home. She looked to be a teenager, so her powers may have surfaced while he still knew her.
- It could have been Tracy or Niki who met Dr. Zimmerman in that picture and then had their memory erased.

- Tracy and Niki didn't realize they had an ability until several years after their teenage years, so Dr. Zimmerman was most likely guessing.

Barbara worked for the Pinehearst Company. None + Every villain that appeared in Angela's dream was shown to be connected to the Pinehearst Company (Knox and Maury are working for them, and Adam was abducted by them). Assuming that the woman who looks like Tracy Strauss is Barbara, she could have been recruited.

+ Ali Larter narrated the video on the Pinehearst website.

- Tracy is confirmed to have worked with Pinehearst.
Barbara's last name is Zimmerman. She was raised by Dr. Zimmerman and his wife. The German was also raised as her brother. What appears to be a family photo on Dr. Zimmerman's desk. (I Am Become Death) + Dr. Zimmerman's reaction to Tracy and the use of only Barbara's first name implies that, unlike Tracy, he personally knows Barbara.
Barbara is dead. We have not seen her as an alive character in the show. + Dr. Zimmerman seemed surprised to see her when he thought she was Barbara. This could possibly be because he knows her to be dead.

- We didn't see Tracy Strauss until Season 3 but she's alive.
- It's possible that they just had a bad "father-daughter" relationship like Niki or Daphne, and he was surprised to see her.

Barbara has the ability of weather manipulation. None Weather manipulation is usually portrayed as allowing characters to control the wind to enable themselves to fly, fitting the above theory about levitation.
+ Weather manipulation also involves controlling other elements like lightning, rain, twisters etc.

- There has not been a reported case of unusual behavior in the weather within the Heroes timeline that Barbara may have caused.

+ Then maybe if the above theory of Barbara being a Level 5 escapee is true, then maybe the Company captured her before the Heroes timeline first started.
Or maybe if Barbara does indeed have the ability of weather manipulation, the power probably functions as only being limited to take effect within the vicinity she is in.

+ Bob said that a snow fall could have been a Tsunami, we know Barbara was in the company's care and could have done them a favour.

Barbara has the ability of "reality distortion" or "projection". None + If the triplet sisters have powers based on mental, physical and elemental, the writers will probably introduce Barbara with a mental ability we have not seen yet.
+ Reality distortion is an ability mentioned in the assignment tracker map.

+ This would fit in with the theory about her ability being illusion.

Tracy, Barbara and Niki aren't actually triplets, but clones of the original. None. If that was so, it wouldn't explain how two of them have vastly different powers, considering powers have roots in blood chemistry.
Triplets would likewise have the same DNA.
Not everything is identical in twins and triplets; even they have different fingerprints.
More likely they are all slightly different clones of the original donor, each with slightly (or highly) modified genes in order to attempt to develop and design abilities. Their abilities were likely each taken from another person, modified and inserted into each of the twins genetic code, in an attempt to see the out-come. It is true that twins don't have identical fingerprints, but many factors such as these are not controlled by genetics. Even sexual characteristics are controlled by hormones during development, not genetics. But, something more innate like an ability would be hard-coded into their genes, and since twins/triplets have identical genetics, they would have the same, or at least very, very similar abilities. They don't, so they are likely unique clones.
Barbara was Niki's sister Jessica. None + Both are said to be Niki's sister.
- Niki, Barbara, and Tracy are said to have been separated at birth.

+ Niki, Tracy and Barbara are triplets, so the latter might have been Jessica and changed her name after what their father did to her, and met Dr. Zimmerman.
- Jessica's grave says she died when she was 10 or 11; Dr. Zimmerman has pictures of Barbara at much older ages.
+ Jessica's grave could have been altered by the company to prevent the triplets knowing about each other.
+ Jessica/Barbara could have the power of illusion.
- Jessica's grave says she was born in 1976; Barbara's triplet sisters' birth certificates say they were born in 1974.
- Barbara and Niki are identical, unlike Jessica and Niki.

Barbara won't show up until her sister is killed. None + Tracy didn't show up until Niki died.
Barbara is Syn Anders' mother. Syn's mother is called Barbara. + Syn has a power; she could have inherited it from a parent.

- Syn is a highly unknown character; she has had virtually no characterization in any canon media, such as the central series or the web comics. Until she receives this prevalence, there would be no point in setting up this story line.
- Barbara was 17 when Syn was born.

+ It's possible for women to have children at 17 (ex. Claire and Meredith).
Barbara's ability is pyrokinesis. None + Tracy's power is freezing and they hadn't shown a full fire vs. ice battle since FYG.

- Pyrokinesis is one the abilities with most known users, the writers know better than to repeat abilities that often.

- There are other abilities with multiple users.
Barbara's ability will be to manipulate others' abilities. None + It could be how Tracy returns, and would make her ability different from both Niki's and Tracy's.
- Tracy has already returned, seemingly without anyone's help.
Barbara speaks German and may in fact live in Germany. If the photo is in fact a family photo, then it should make Barbara family of Dr. Zimmerman and The German. + Dr. Zimmerman's accent explains this.

+ The German must (obviously) speak German as well.
- Dr. Zimmerman and the German didn't seem to live in Germany quite a long time. If they are family with Barbara, why would she live in Germany alone?

She could have returned for a number of reasons, she could have a job there, she could have married someone in Germany.
Barbara will be romantically involved with Sylar/Nathan. None + Both Niki and Tracy were involved with Nathan.

- Sylar is no longer Nathan.

Barbara's last names will begin with S. None + Both her sister's last names began with "S".
It could be a coincidence.
Barbara doesn't know that she has an ability. None + Both Niki and Tracy did not know of their abilities.
Barbara has the Mark. None + She has a synthetic ability and was under the Company's care.
- Neither Niki or Tracy had the mark, so why would her sister?
We will never know any more about Barbara. Heroes is over. + We saw her once. And she was a child, her powers were never shown and we know little to nothing about her.
Barbara has or will kill someone accidentally with her ability. None. + Both Niki and Tracy did.
Barbara is Barbara (The Agent). Both are called Barbara. + We have not seen Barbara yet.

+ Both have abilities.
+ Dr. Zimmerman seemed surprised to see Tracy when he thought she was Barbara. This could imply that she ran away (to join a circus).
+ Both are called Barbara.
These are two characters that have little known about them and if they were the same character this would be very helpful for the writers.


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See Also: 9RedTime travelBarbara