Matt Parkman’s (Greg Grunberg) return to the Heroes universe last week showed us a man that transitioned from hero to mercenary after selling his abilities to Renautas. We find out just how much the telepath has changed from struggling good cop to evil badass in the latest episode of Heroes Reborn.
We first met Officer Parkman in Heroes season one when he was low on the totem pole of the LAPD. He was securing a crime scene when his telepathic abilities kicked in and Matt started hearing a pleading voice in his head. It led him to young Molly Walker who had hidden herself while Sylar killed her parents. Despite going through a lot of crap throughout the original series run, he was always a genuinely good guy trying to do what he believed was right. His string of misfortunes include his wife Janice cheating on him with his former partner (eventually resulting in divorce), his father Maury abandoning their family when he was 13, getting trapped in an illusion created by his own father (who is also a telepath), as well re-marrying but wife number two gets shot and dies (Daphne).
On top of all that, he’s also had to deal with the craziness of Sylar, The Company, Pinehurst, his own father, the Petrellis’, and Samuel in the final season. Still, Matt and Janice decide to give their relationship another chance and raise their young son Matt Jr. together when Heroes ended. By 2010 however, he claimed to have gotten smart by selling his abilities to Renautas and is brought in to read past HRG’s mind to find out what happened to Claire. As previously discussed in last week’s article, the telepath still holds a soft spot for Noah and lets him and Caspar go after finding out about the cheerleader’s death. In 2015 though Matt seems to have become more like his father in ruthlessness and abilities.
We discover that he is the director of Sunstone Manor, a Renautas facility where Evos are being held through mind control and are evaluated for their usefulness to the company. When Carlos and former LAPD officer James Dearing (an Evo with enhanced strength) head to Sunstone to rescue Jose and Father Mauricio, Parkman is waiting for them after a botched infiltration. He is able to fully control both mens’ bodies and makes them relive their horrific nightmares while being able to see exactly what they are seeing in their minds. Parkman is powerful indeed.
His abilities also now include mass hypnosis while being able to create fully immersive illusions with deadly physical outcomes. In Dearing’s case, Matt makes him go into a room covered with plastic and picks up a pistol on a table. We don’t see him actually shoot himself, but the scene soon after shows Sunstone workers folding up a bloodied piece of plastic wrapping. Parkman then does the same thing to Carlos and has him go into the same room, but instead of a pistol he sees a military rifle. The Vengador imagines that he is back in Iraq when his unit is ambushed and Farah Nazan tells him to get a grip and to use his weapon. Matt seems to know who Farah is.
Parkman has become an incredibly powerful telepath and doesn’t seem to have any issues with using his talents to benefit Renautas. However does he know the extent of Erica’s devious plans? He must since he could have read Harris’ thoughts in the hospital and he’s had to have met Erica in person. Still the Renautas CEO could have had Phoebe around to negate his abilities when they met, which opens the possibility for him to join Team Heroes if he discovers the truth. He does have Matt Jr. and Janice to think about after all. This is a huge change for Matt who had never seemed fully confident in himself before. It’s incredibly fun to see him have such a commanding presence and be totally comfortable in his own skin, albeit as a baddie. Greg Grunberg has done an amazing job with evil Parkman and I am thoroughly enjoying his badass status. Super excited to see what’s in store for him next!
You can catch up on past episodes HERE.
Heroes Reborn airs on NBC, Thursdays 8/7 central.