When NBC's "Heroes" went off the air in 2010, fans thought they might have seen the last of their favorite characters, that is until the show returned five years later in September 2015 with the miniseries "Heroes Reborn." To bridge the gap in time, six eBooks have been written to fill fans in on everything that led up to the new series. Author Keith R. A. DeCandido was given the task of writing Book 5, which told the story of what happened to Claire Bennet (Hayden Panettiere).
Claire was a fan-favorite in the original series, and her two children, Tommy (Robbie Kay) and Malina (Danika Yarosh), are tasked with saving the world this time around. DeCandido spoke to International Business Times about what is was like writing about an important character like Claire, how the eBooks and show are connected and what fans can expect to see in the final episodes of "Heroes Reborn."
Going into "Heroes Reborn," many fans were wondering what the fate of Claire was, especially after Panettiere said she wouldn't be returning to the show. It was eventually revealed that she died giving birth to twins, one of which took away her power to heal. DeCandido said he enjoyed being able to write the story of such an important character in "Heroes Reborn - Book 5: Save The Cheerleader, Destroy The World."
"The character of Claire was hugely important in the original series and a fascinating one to boot, so it was a really wonderful opportunity to get inside her head and bridge the gap between the two shows to go from her going public to the situation as we see it on the new show," DeCandido told IBT.
He added that some characters from the old series who haven't appeared on "Heroes Reborn" are in the eBooks, like Peter Petrelli (Milo Ventimiglia). Petrelli was Claire's uncle in the original series, so he had some sort of role in her life over the past five years in the story.
Aside from writing about Claire, DeCandido "got the willies" after he wrote about an attack happening in Paris in Book 5 and an actual attack ended up happening a week before the eBook's release.
"It’s something that’s going to have too much resonance. I didn’t pick Paris for a particular reason, I just thought it was a good touchstone for all of Europe and then for that attack to happen the same week the novella came out was eerie to say the least," he said.
The author noted that seeing something play out in fiction only to happen in real life has happened before. For instance, he pointed to an episode of "The X-Files" called "The Lone Gunman" which featured someone wanting to fly a plane into the World Trade Center before Sept. 11 happened.
"Usually it means I guess we’re observing the world a little too well or well enough to really make our fiction be what it is," DeCandido said.
Just three episodes remain of "Heroes Reborn" and DeCandido said the showrunners have kept each author of the eBooks "aggressively" in the loop. Each time there was a change in the shows script, the authors were made aware of it.
"Every time there’s a script change we got a notification about it, which enabled me to make some changes in my own novella to make it more in line with the changes that were happening which is extremely useful and that’s a level of cooperation you don’t usually get," DeCandido said. "The 'Heroes' crew believes in the importance of these tie novels and believe that they are a part of the larger story."
The "Heroes Reborn" production staff worked closely with DeCandido and the other authors and the writers of the eBooks also were on the same page with one another. DeCandido said the staff provided him with notes of what they wanted to see happen, while also allowing him to come up with the rest of the story.
DeCandido knows how the series will wrap up, but couldn't give anything away. However, he did say that fans should enjoy where things go on the show.
"There’s going to be a lot of interesting things revealed and I think it will be a particularly massive in a good way finale," he dished.
The author said he's not sure if there will be more "Heroes Reborn" novels in the future, as it depends on how successful they are. The original idea was to just do the six, but if the show continues, there's always the possibility of more.
"Heroes Reborn" returns Thursday, Jan. 7, on NBC at 8 p.m. EST. You can purchase the "Heroes Reborn" eBooks here.