I hadn't seen Heroes until last week because we don't have whatever fancy channel it has been broadcast on up until now. I thoroughly enjoyed the first two episodes, which seemed full of promise. Sure, I thought they didn't need to have the two brothers say to each other 'you're my brother' and so on, but a certain amount of exposition is excusable when you're trying to set up a series.
It's so lovely to have a valid reason not to leave the house and I thought I'd got my Wednesday nights all planned out for the next few weeks. My favourite superhero type TV programme was for kids - The Secret World of Alex Mack, about a 13 year old girl. Did you ever see that? I seem to remember it was great.
But last night's episode of Heroes was such a pain in the arse with yet more exposition and all the hero characters matched with a friend of some sort so they could explain their inner thoughts to them. The young Indian man threw a precious lap-top to the floor. It was full of information he'd been seaching for over two continents and just as you're thinking 'that would never happen', guess what; the computer hit the floor and revealed there were useful documents and a key hidden inside it. You think, OK, maybe they were in a hurry or something when they were writing it and they couldn't find a better way... And then one of the brothers denounced the other, quite unnecessarily, at a press conference. And then the policeman left his wife without a fight when he 'heard' her thoughts, in which she wished he would go. How hard would it have been to have her wishing he would stay and he left anyway? I mean, honestly!
What finally did for me were four words; 'my son, your husband', spoken to a white woman with a mixed race son about the child's father, by a middle-aged black woman who had already been established as 'Grandma'. Yeah, we get it. We get it! You don't need to say it. Just as I was railing at the TV, the white woman, who had driven all the way to Grandma's house, said to Grandma - I want you out of my son's life. Well, love - don't go to her house, then.
What happened there? Whose idea was it to have all that crappy, clunky stuff in the script? The writer's, or someone else's? Anyway, what a shame. Heroes is such a nice idea for a TV show but I don't want to spend even 45 minutes of my time each week engaging with something that assumes I'm stupid. I don't mind suspending disbelief in what's happening on screen - hey, maybe people can fly - but I refuse to suspend disbelief in my own intelligence.
Atom's back on tonight, BBC4, 9.00 pm - it was very good last week. I never used to understand all those old people who said they preferred documentaries to drama on TV but I can't help thinking they might be right. Either TV drama is worse than it once was or I'm getting old... OK, see what you mean - maybe I'll give Heroes another go next week.