Hayden Panettiere, Heroes

Will Nathan (Adrian Pasdar) die by an assassin's bullet? Was Niki (Ali Larter) truly blown to hot, blonde, gorgeous bits? Will Adam (David Anders) spend eternity six feet under? And — say it ain't so! — does badass Elle (Kristen Bell) really have an inner Girl Scout? The Dec. 3 episode of Heroes, the conclusion of the show's second volume "Generations," left us with lots of big questions. Creator and executive producer Tim Kring has the answers. And, whaddya know, he's even sharing some of them!

The fate of Nathan, who was shot during a TV press conference, and of Niki, who may have died in an abandoned building explosion, are "up in the air and will be determined when we come back after the strike," Kring says. "Things are fairly dire for them both." Immortal Adam was teleported by Hiro (Masi Oka) into a coffin buried in the same Japanese cemetery where his father Kaito (George Takei), who was slain by Adam, is also buried. "It's poetic justice to have Adam end up in the same graveyard as Kaito," Kring notes. "We've given the audience no reason to believe that Adam can figure a way to get out of there. The fact that he can live forever makes this the most gruesome of internments. If this happened to any of us, at least we'd know we'd soon have the mercy of death. Not here."

Witchy, bitchy Elle, who wound up saving the lives of Mohinder (Sendhil Ramamurthy), Maya (Dania Ramirez) and little Molly (Adair Tishler), clearly sparked when Mohinder called her a hero. "Kristen Bell gave us the perfect reaction in that scene," Kring says. "For a moment there, Elle sees she's been given an opportunity to use her powers in a good way. And she absolutely likes the sound of that word 'hero.'" Not to worry. There are plenty more baddies coming after the writers' strike concludes. In fact, the title of Volume 3 — "Villains" — says it all.

"We've introduced a cadre of them over the course of the show and we're going to see them rise up," Kring says. "Just as the heroes have found each other to save the world, the villains will do the same with the opposite intent." And their numbers may be legion. "The Company has catalogued many of these people over the years. There may be more of them down in that basement than we have alluded to so far."

Will Sylar (Zachary Quinto) be their ringleader? After being electro-zapped by Elle, Mister Eyebrows escaped to a back alley and skeevily injected himself with Claire's (Hayden Panettiere) blood. Then, in a wicked salute to Popeye, he telekinetically grabbed a can of spinach and said, "I'm back!"

"Sylar getting his power back does not bode well for our heroes," says Kring, who admits there is one upside to the writers' strike: Originally, Quinto was not going to be available for much of Volume 3 because of his commitment to the new Star Trek film. Now, with the strike dragging on, he'll likely be done playing young Spock by the time Heroes returns to production.

Tim Kring will appear on G4's The Post Show on Saturday, Dec. 8, at 11 pm/ET, following a repeat of last night's episode.

Relive "Generations" with full Heroes episodes and clips in our Online Video Guide.

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