Let Slip The DOGs Of War

Heroes1 f

“My name is Hiro Nakamura, I’m from the future…. and I have a message for you”

The Heroes episode “Collision” changed me from a casual observer of the show who had a detached intrigue ‘cos-everyone-said-it-was-good into gibbering fanboy of this unmissable, appointment TV. I have been largely oblivious to spoilers due to the lack of real interest on my part up to this point (other than hearing something about Christopher Eccleston‘s future involvement on the Doctor Who forums… or is that “fora”?) but the internet is awash with talk and now I have one more temptation to resist. Any comic fan will know and be happy to tell you that storytelling potential of that particular medium is immense, and this is probably the first time I’ve seen that realised in a TV show. The cast of characters is varied and I am enjoying the interaction between them as their paths begin to cross and the ‘arc’ starts to reveal itself.

Now for the bad news. What on earth are the SciFi Channel playing at? First we have the woeful picture quality. Heroes, I presume, is made in widescreen and glorious HD over in the States, so why then are we being treated to a horrible pan ‘n’ scanned image that distorts everything into unbearable sqashedness? Second, is it just me or are there more ad breaks on this channel? We must see about a dozen trailers for that wretched “Battle for Midway” game in every installment and, guess what…. I’m not gonna buy it! And finally, a pet peeve of mine. DOGs. Digital Onscreen Graphics. I know I’m watching the SciFi Channel because I chose it, with my remote, all by myself. You do not need to slap your ugly great logo up in the left hand corner for the duration and whatever excuse you may come up with for doing so, it won’t explain why it miraculously disappears during the ad breaks! It gets worse too. Over in the right-hand corner we have a lovely “+1” to tell me that I am watching a timeslipped channel. How does this help me? [……. pauses for breath before final rant ……] Just before the end, when we’re in the middle of the final, finest scene of the show, Patricia Bloody Arquette materialises on screen and winks at me just to let me know that she’s on next in the appalling Medium. So here we all are, trying to enjoy the programme and we’ve got three glaring images obscuring all the action. No wonder people are turning to their friendly, neighbourhood BitTorrent service.

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