|Date(s):||September 25, 2006 – February 8, 2010|
|Medium:||Television, tie-in comics and webseries|
|Country of Origin:||United States|
|External Links:||Official NBC site, IMDb, Wikipedia, Heroes Wiki|
|Click here for related articles on Fanlore.|
In September 2015, a spin-off and miniseries, Heroes Reborn began.
Ordinary people around the world discover they have extraordinary powers.
Each season, there is a huge threat to (at least some part of) the world, and a group of people with supernatural powers try to find out more about it, and then attempt to stop it. Because some of the character's powers include time travel, (and some of the things they've stopped have been in the future), there are now multiple time-lines -- ones where devastation or horrible diseases happened, and ones where they didn't. There are also web episodes (webisodes), and official graphic novels, making deciding canon trickier in Heroes than in most other fandoms.
Tim Kring has more than once written open letters to watchers of Heroes (for example, apologizing for many mistakes made in season 2 ), making him more accessible than many showrunners, though less so than the people writing SGA, Buffy, Supernatural and others. He also called some of the fans of the show "saps and dipshits" and he apologized for that.
There was enormous fan enthusiasm for the show first season. Since then, there's been a drop off in fannish interest, partially because of a perceived drop off in the quality of the writing (increasing retcons, plotholes and inconsistencies), partly because of the increased racial stereotyping (detailed below in Controversies) and partly because no sooner do fans become enthusiastic about a pairing then TPTB break the pairing up (detailed below in Slash Pairings).
Influences from Other fandoms
The vignettes that aired promoting new characters that would debut in the following season is a technique that originated in Professional Wrestling, specifically in Memphis, TN with the The Fabulous Ones in the early 1980s and is still used today.
In first season, the multi-ethnic cast and story lines were fairly well thought through (though even then people noticed that The Haitian had no name, and the other black guy was, of course, an ex-con). In second and third season, ethnic stereotyping (Peter's Magical Irish Journey, Hiro stuck as a clown, rather than the hero the plot seems to require him to be, and many other examples) and magical negro plots, like Matt's Magical African Journey.
Shipping was a large part of the fandom and had many different pairings due to vast amount of characters the series had as main and secondary characters. Slash dominates the fandom, although there is a large het following, with various pairings that appeared on the various Heroes sites and communities. Femslash is fairly rare in the fandom and it wasn't really until the final two seasons that it started to appear within the fandom. There is also a large gen part of the fandom, with plenty of Fanworks dedicated to it.
While some of the earlier pairings had ship names and was predominately referred to as them, for example: Petrellicest for Nathan/Peter, Paire for Claire/Peter, or Mylar for Mohinder/Sylar, others often did not use ship names or have them created and simply used the "/" formula when stating which pairing the fanwork or discussion was about.
At the end of 1st season, the three biggest pairings were Matt/Mohinder, Mohinder/Sylar and Nathan/Peter. By the end of the second season, changes in the plot had crushed the appeal of Matt/Mohinder, and the constant changes of Sylar's character (first he's evil, then he's good then he's evil, then he's...) lessened the charm of Mohinder/Sylar (and other smaller Sylar-based pairings, though Sylar/Peter was fairly popular). Nathan/Peter and other Petrellicest pairings (Peter/Claire, etc.) were still going strong past the 3rd season.
While slash shipping pretty much dominates the fandom, there is plenty of het shipping and pairings. While most of them are driven from canon, others are completely fanon. The largest het pairing in the first season, even before the characters met was Claire/Peter (which would later be jossed due them being revealed to be uncle and niece, despite this reveal, many fans kept shipping it). The other two largest het pairings are Claire/Sylar and Elle/Sylar. Some other het pairings that had a steady flow of fanworks and shipping for them throughout the series was Claire/Adam, Peter/Niki, Nathan/Niki, Elle/Nathan, Eden/Gabriel, Elle/Mohinder, Claire/Zach, Caitlin/Peter, Audrey/Matt, Adam/Elle, Heidi/Nathan and Heidi/Peter.
Femslash started appearing in season 2 and 3 with the pairing of Claire/Elle and the pairing Claire/Gretchen appeared in Season 4. Due to type of relationship they had, Jessica/Niki often appeared since the first season. Other femslash pairings remained fairly rare throughout the fandom, with only a few others popping up here and there with more than one fanwork dedicated to them: Eden McCain/Candice Wilmer, Claire/May, Claire/Jessica, and Claire/Niki.
Common Tropes & Fanon
- Alternate Universes & Futurefics set within canon AUs/Future, such as Five Years Gone Universe or fanon ones.
- Crossovers frequently appeared, especially with many fandoms that were active at the same time or had similar plots such as Supernatural, Twilight, Smallville, Doctor Who and X-Men Movieverse.
- Heroes works tagged at Archive of Our Own
- Heroes & crossover works at Fanfiction.net
- The List, a Heroes fanfiction and meta archive
- See individual character and relationship pages for more.
- heroes_tv, Main Heroes episode discussion community
- Enormous list of Heroes LJ Communities
- Heroes Fic Finder
- Heroes fic comm
- Best of Heroes
- fiveyears_fic, fanfic dedicate to the Five Years Gone Universe
- mature_heroes, adult-related works
- Heroes Kink Meme
- cheer_and_fly, Claire/Nathan
- noaire, Claire/Noah
- adam_niki, Adam/Niki
- matt_molly, Matt/Molly and Matt & Molly
- peter_elle, Elle/Peter
Threesomes & Moresomes
- heroes_claire, Claire Bennet
- heroes_molly, Molly Walker
- heroes_isaac, Isaac Mendez
- heroes_heidi, Heidi Petrelli
- heroes_mohinder, Mohinder Suresh
- mohinder_gen, gen works for Mohinder Suresh
Message Boards & Forums
The official NBC site also shows fanart submissions:
- Heroes-Sites.com, defunct site listing
- 'Heroes' Creator Apologizes to Fans
- Tim Kring apologizes for calling fans 'dips***s
- As of April 24, 2017: Slash works have 1529 works out of 3125 Heroes works section of AO3
- As of April 24, 2017: Het works have 749 works out of 3125 Heroes works section of AO3
- As of April 24, 2017: Femslash works have 130 works out of 3125 Heroes works section of AO3
- As of April 24, 2017: Gen works have 904 works out of 3125 Heroes works section of AO3
- As of April 24, 2017: FFN's top five crossovers with Heroes. Some even had LJ communities dedicated to them: sv_heroes (Smallville) and xmen_heroes (X-Men)