"Heroes" Chapter Two 'The Butterfly Effect' (TV Episode 2008) - Plot Summary Poster

(TV Series)

(II) (2008)


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  • A egotistical and super-charged Sylar goes to the Company to kill all the leaders, and inadvertently releases 12 super-powered criminals from the place's notorious Level 5 prison block during a fight with Elle. Peter, trapped in the body of one of the criminals, is set free as well and is forced to team up with a group for a crime spree. Meanwhile, Future Peter tries to fix his mistake with Nathan, as Angela takes over the company in the wake of Bob Bishop's murder and frees Noah Bennett to help the Company track down the 12 escapees and bring them back or eliminate them. In California, Claire learns more about her powers as she recovers from Sylar's attack. Hiro and Ando travel to Paris to track down speedster Daphne Milbrook who robbed them and learn that she is working for a darker power. In New York, Maya discovers that Mohinder's injection has changed him by making him super-strong, but also altered his personality. In Africa, Matt meats Usutu, an African shaman with a familiar power of painting the future. Elsewhere, Tracy learns that she has the power to super-freeze anyone and anything while dealing with a hounded tabloid reporter seeking any dirt on her and the shady Governor Maldon who are continuing to groom Peter for a position in the U.S. Congress.


The synopsis below may give away important plot points.


  • "Heroes" - "The Butterfly Effect" - September 22, 2008

    (Part Two of the Season 3 premiere)

    Mrs. Bennet is cleaning up Sylar's mess and tells Claire when she's ready to talk that she's here. Mrs. B. is worried. Claire assures her that Sylar's not coming back, knowing he got what he came for. Mrs. B. wants to know, not in so many words, if Sylar raped her. Claire says no. As they've been talking Claire has accidentally put her hands in glass and is bleeding. She's surprised that she doesn't feel anything. Mrs. B says, that's her power, right? Nope, says Claire. She heals but she always feels the pain and is glad she does since it's the only time she knows she's still human. The cut heals.

    Mama Petrelli is having a vision of the future. Hiro, Parkman, Peter, Claire, and HRG are all dead or dying gruesome deaths. Niki, an unidentified black man, Sark, and Mr. Parkman are all lined up against her and Sylar grabs her from behind. In the back of a limo she awakens, grabbing her shoulder.

    She arrives at Peter's apartment saying she had another dream, and it's all because he isn't where he's supposed to be, so he should go back where he came from. He says he's too busy saving the world. She appraises his clotheslines of colored string and big map and says he was never as smart as he thought he was. He says there are things that he knows that she can't. She tells him she gave him his powers and not to screw with time and explains about the Butterfly Effect. She says the effect that he's having now with his changes could put people he cares about in danger -- like say, Claire, who had a very bad day because he told her to stay put in California instead of going to Odessa to be with him and Nathan.

    Maya walks into Mohinder's lab. She finds him hanging from the ceiling like a bat. He falls, shirtless and sweaty, and lands neatly on his feet. She came to apologize for yelling at him the night before and wonders how he did what he just did. He tells her he injected himself and the results have been beyond his wildest dreams. He feels great, is excited, and has been monitoring all of the changes in his body. He says he's completely the same in every biological way but now he can climb walls, which he does. He says if he can give powers to anyone, that it's only a matter of time before he figures out how to reverse their effects. As he says this he's all up in her grill, smelling her, running his hands over her face and hair. He says it all came from her and what's inside her extraordinary body. They start to make out. He pulls off her shirt. Between kisses, she says, "you are different."

    Back in desolation land Parkman is walking in a "location unknown." He walks some more. He passes a bird. He starts to pass out. He passes out.

    Back on the sunny suburban street, Sylar struts. A car with a camera in it pulls up on him. Two people get out. We see from the car camera view one shooting and and the other tazing him, Sylar not getting hurt, and then hurtling one back into the windshield and crushing the camera. The image goes to static and we pull back on a TV being watched by Bob and Elle at Primatech Paper headquarters. Elle apologizes and says she screwed up. Bob concurs. Elle says she can stop him. Bob says her need for approval is hard to bear. She says she'll try. He doesn't want to put her in a position where she'll be letting him or herself down.

    Back at Yamagoto Industries Ando arrives and Hiro tells him not to sneak up on him. A team of detectives is going over the mess that Speedster left behind. The detectives tell him that her name is Daphne Millbrook and that she lives in Paris. Hiro is off to track her down without Ando. Ando wonders what he did wrong and why won't Hiro take him? Hiro relents.

    "Tracy Strauss" and the Governor are walking and talking and arguing about Nathan Petrelli. Tracy wants him to fill a "seat" but Governor Malden is nervous and thinks someone else might be a safer choice. Tracy says if they put Petrelli in a strategic seat that he would "owe" the Gov. The Gov says he's untested and maybe unbalanced. She argues that the whole miracle-on-the-table thing coupled with the finding-God thing is playing nicely with the far right. The Gov worries that politics and God are risky bedfellows. She points out that he doesn't pay her for sex -- that she gives free. He pays her for advice, and her advice is to appoint Nathan Petrelli the junior senator from New York. The Gov. says to reach out to him.

    Tracy is off to make her flight. A reporter- played by "Greatest American Hero" William Katt!- confronts her saying he's got a hot story on her. He pulls out a picture from the "Niki" stripping website. She says it's not her as she gets in her little sports car. He says it is and that he's running the story with or without her comment. She threatens to hunt him down and destroy him if he does and speeds off.

    Hiro and Ando flash into Daphne's fancy, artifact-laden apartment in Paris. Ando can't believe that this is the home of a thief. It is. They look on the wall and there is the Mona Lisa.

    Claire is talking into a video camera - trained on train tracks- saying that it might help to make a tape like she did before since she's not feeling human anymore. "If you can't feel anything, do you still have a soul?" A train rumbles in the distance. She says her name is Claire Bennett and this is attempt number 7. As the train is about to hit her, Peter swoops down and grabs her up. He wonders what she's doing. She says trying to feel human. He hugs her and asks what has happened to her. Something awful, she says.

    Claire and Peter walk through a field as she explains what Sylar did to her. He says, "He can heal now?" Claire confirms. He muses to himself, "That wasn't supposed to happen." She's all, what? And wants to know what Sylar meant by her being special and different. Peter says what happened never should've happened. She says Peter can't keep saving her, what happened was her fault. She can heal but she can't defend herself, calling her power lame. She tells him to teach her to use her power to defend herself. He says he can't, not now. She says she needs a teacher. He says he has to go and disappears.

    In the hospital in Odessa, Nathan prays to a window as Tracy walks in. "Speaking of sin," he says when he turns around. She smiles saying the nurse let her in. He wonders what she's doing there. She laughs and says she should've phoned. She says she has a proposition. Still thinking she's "Niki/Jessica" he smirks. She says she's there on behalf of the Governor to offer him a senate seat. He says "Niki, its me, what the hell are you talking about?" She laughs and smiles and is confused at him calling her NIki. She wonders if he thinks he knows her. Best line of the show: "The word 'biblically' comes to mind." He explains about Vegas. She smiles and laughs and says it's a case of mistaken identity. She introduces herself. She pulls out her card and departs. Linderman watches her leave. She doesn't seem to notice him, as if he's not there. Peter says Linderman put Niki up to it. Linderman says it wasn't Niki but Tracy, and that the offer is good, that it's the chance of a lifetime, and Nathan should consider it. That it's God's plan. Nathan says Linderman wouldn't know anything about God's plan and kicks him out. He examines the card.

    Elle goes into Bob's office and says they don't need to look for Sylar since Level 5 is an "all you can eat buffet" of powers and that he will come to them. Bob doesn't respond and she gets mad until she walks around his desk and, looking at his turned around chair, sees that the top of his head has been lopped off.

    She goes to Level 5 with a gun. The patients yell at her including "Peter Petrelli." She opens HRG's cell, throws him the gun and informs him Sylar is in the building and that he killed Bob. HRG follows Elle out of his cell and watches as she is promptly thrown against a wall by Sylar, who says "Hello, Noah, did you miss me?" HRG unloads a lot of rounds into him, and Sylar slides to the ground. The bullets fall out. He looks up and says with a smirk, "Ouch. I got that from your Claire." He whacks HRG against a wall telekinetically and picks up the gun. Elle, crawling along the ground, tries to zap him but he pins her to the ground with his mind. He turns the gun into gold. (Bob's power). He tells her she's as much to blame for him killing people as anyone. He goes to zap her head off with his sweet finger move - as "Peter Petrelli" pounds on his cell window- and it unleashes her electricity, sending him to the wall with a massive shockwave.

    Elle wakes up bleary, first seeing HRG and then Peter Petrelli, in his guise as a heavyset young Hispanic man. Apparently all the cell doors have been opened and another inmate grabs "Peter" and hustles him off. Elle sits up to sirens wailing and sparks flying. HRG is dragging Sylar off. Elle, probably confused by seeing her old pal Weevil, passes out.

    At Daphne's apartment Hiro and Ando are sacking her apartment for the formula. Ando wonders why Hiro is treating him like a criminal. Hiro finally tells him of his future vision of Ando as a villain who kills him. Ando says he is Hiro's best friend and argues that it must've been some future robot. Back to the task at hand Hiro wonders about setting a trap for Daphne. He comes across a hundred yard dash medal she won in the 12th grade.

    Peter comes to Nathan's hospital room and asks how he's feeling. Nathan tells Peter about the senate seat. He muses that the last time he had political power, he nearly wiped Manhattan off the map and is worried what that says about his nature. Peter argues that Nathan is different now and that he has to show him something. He morphs into "Future Peter" complete with scar. Nathan is freaked. Peter tells him about the future and how he came back to shoot him. He explains that because of what Nathan told the world at that press conference he's been living in a world where people like them have been hunted, slaughtered, and used. Nathan is unsure how to respond. Peter says he's now changed the future but he needs Nathan's forgiveness. Nathan wonders, since Peter's from the future, if he knows what he does next. Does he take the senate seat? Peter explains that he doesn't know since he's changed the future. (Duh). He says now Nathan can be the brother he always looked up to and hopes he makes the right choices. Before Peter gets forgiveness he disappears to "set things right."

    Tracy is tooling back into that same parking lot when Nathan calls to tell her he'll take the seat on one condition, he wants her on his staff. She agrees. The reporter is back still looking for a comment. She tells him again, that she's not Niki. He whips out a portable DVD player with that old video of her doing Nathan in Vegas. He knows Nathan is rumored to be the Gov's choice. She says it's not her and walks off. He says he was thinking of going with a splashy headline about a K Street ice queen heating up Las Vegas by sleeping with a senator and congressman. She panics and says he can't run the story, grabbing at the DVD player. They tussle. It turns out she really is an ice queen, 'cuz when she gets mad, his whole body freezes and then falls to the ground, shattering into pieces. She freaks, looks around and runs off. (How much do you want to bet that there are video cameras in that parking garage?)

    Back on Level 5, a sad and scarred Elle is scolded by an arriving Mama Petrelli who, with Bob's death, is now commander-in-chief of the company. Mama P's making a few changes. Elle's all, "we caught Sylar!" Mama P is all, "and your electrical outburst shut down the grid and let loose a dozen superpsychos as bad or worse, and HRG." Elle is remorseful and says she'll get right on it. No she won't, says Mama P, who says they won't be needing Elle's services anymore. Elle says she's worked for the company her whole life, what is she supposed to do now? Mama P suggests getting another life. Sylar lies on a table with a tube in his nose.

    Back at Daphne's, Hiro and Ando are going over their plan to trap Daphne. It involves putting Ando in harm's way. Ando asks Hiro to stop punishing him for something he hasn't done yet. Hiro tells him not to kill him in the future then. They argue about this for awhile. Daphne arrives and she's angry. Hiro says she has something of his and now he has something of hers, waving her medal at her. They race around the room -- she going real fast, he shifting time. Ando's standing there. Hiro says he's offering a trade. She agrees but says her boss isn't going to be happy. She pulls the formula out from behind the Mona Lisa, where neither of them looked. She says she was just heading out to get the other half. He gives the medal to Ando to go trade. Hiro says that this is a trade between honorable people. She disagrees and goes to grab the medal and keep the formula. Hiro stops time as Daphne has a knife to Ando's throat. He says he can't let her go since the formula could destroy the world. She wonders if it's worth Ando's life. He flinches and she runs off. Time restarts and Ando has a cut on his neck -- he wonders if Hiro did it. He says no, that Daphne did. Ando worries that the plan failed but Hiro pulls out a GPS, saying he put a tracking device on the medal. She's already in Berlin, according to the device.

    Maya and Mohinder lie in bed. Mohinder awakens sweaty and feeling strange, staring at his hand, which has something trembling in its veins. He goes to the bathroom and splashes water on his face. He notices in the mirror something funky on his back. He reaches over his shoulder and peels off a piece of calcified skin. His back is covered in wounds just like that. He asks aloud, "What's happening to me?"

    Back in desolation land, Parkman awakens to a turtle telling him that a nearby plant will give him water. Parkman thinks he's going insane but grabs the plant and drinks from the branches. He thanks the turtle for saving his life when a man steps into the frame and wonders why he's talking to a turtle. Parkman looks up. The man, who is black and sounds African but speaks English, gives him a canteen. He says "You come from America?" When Parkman answers yes, he asks "Do you know Britney Spears?" Parkman, confused, answers no. He says America is a big place. The man says Africa is too. Parkman gets up to follow him and notices a cell phone on his belt. The man says there's no service here, "Should've gone with Sprint." (SERIOUSLY??) Parkman says the man has to help him get back. The man says actually, Parkman has to stay and "spirit walk" for many miles. Parkman says he has to get back to find out why he was sent here. The man says he has to stay and then calls him by his name. Parkman is confused and wants to know how he knows him. The man says it's not right that Parkman is here and it must mean that the future is not how he's painted it. Parkman wants to know how this guy knows how to paint the future. The guy tells him to just walk.

    Claire comes down the stairs in her house to see HRG sitting down to his desk. They hug. He asks if she's alright. She says no, but she's better now. She notices the gun on his desk and realizes he's not staying. He says something has happened that he can't ignore.

    Nathan is playing chess with Linderman, who says it's good that Nathan took the senate seat. Nathan says he's not going to let Linderman manipulate him this time, he's the one in control now. "Of course you are," purrs Linderman. The door opens and a nurse enters and tells him to go to sleep. Nathan says he's in the middle of a heated game. "You're playing yourself?" she asks. As suspected, only Nathan can see Linderman. Linderman informs him of this. Nathan does not look happy.

    HRG is showing Claire a series of files of the bad men from Level 5 and the different powers they have. (Knox turns other people's fear into his own strength, Flint is a flamethrower, the "German" is controls magnetic energy, one is named Jesse whose file reads "Sound Manipulation", though HRG tells Claire that "she doesn't want to know what he can do"). He says that before Claire was born he was finding these people and locking them away and now a dozen have escaped and they will kill and terrorize and conspire and destroy. He says he's one of the only people on the planet that knows enough to stop them. She says she can help him, she wants to be his partner. He says no, and that he's doing it so she doesn't have to. He says he's called on someone to look after her and mom and Lyle. Reveal: Claire's bio-mom. HRG says she's in good hands and to prove it bio-mom extends her hand and makes fire.

    Peter pops into Level 5. He sees Sylar on the table. He runs to the other cells looking for "himself." He doesn't understand what happened. Mama P arrives screaming, essentially, I told you so about the butterfly effect. She yells that they all escaped and Future Peter damn well better get Present Day Peter back and then go back to where he came from.

    We see Peter at a pay phone calling and leaving a message for Nathan telling him to look out for someone who looks just like him with a scar on his face. As he says this he looks at his reflection in the phone booth and sees his new face. (That of an inmate we learned was named Jesse). One of the other inmates, the black one that we now know is fear-sucker Knox, breaks the connection to tell Present Day Peter their ride is here. (In a totally confusing move, we now see him as regular Peter and not in the Jesse body, that up until now was being played by Francis Capra).

    They walk away from the phone toward the gas station where they have run to, to Flint beating up gas station patrons and setting them on fire. Peter is aghast. The "German" displays his magnetic powers by opening the doors of a car with a flick of his hand. They all get into the car and drive away.

    Mama Petrelli goes to Sylar, who is strapped to a table, and rubs his head and unstraps one arm and says that her boys were a disappointment, but she can give him what all boys crave from their mothers: inspiration, guidance, comfort. "Isn't that right Gabriel?" He awakens and snarls, "My name is Sylar, and you are not my mother." She grabs his hand and says, "but I am dear, I am."

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