Masi Oka Masi Oka

Throughout Heroes' "Fugitives" volume, many of the super-powered world savers have been communicating with and taking orders from a mysterious ally named Rebel. This Monday (at 9pm/ET, on NBC), the truth behind that mystery will be revealed. But before that happens, Hiro Nakamura (Masi Oka) has to babysit a little one seemingly connected to Matt Parkman. We caught up with Oka to get the details on this diapered distraction, what Rebel is really up to, and just when (if it all) Hiro will get his powers back. The last episode ended with Hiro discovering that the Matt Parkman he was trying to save was a baby. How is that going to play out?
Masi Oka: The baby is definitely a little bit extraordinary. More will be revealed about the baby and its origin. It's just another crossing of the paths in terms of the destinies of Hiro and Matt Parkman. We knew Parkman's ex-wife was pregnant in Season 1, but Matt was sure it wasn't his baby. Is this kid even his?
Oka: That's all part of the reveal, but the baby is Matt Parkman's baby. So, what does that mean? We'll find out. When Hiro gets to Parkman, what's his reaction?
Oka: It's like anything in life. You think you have your life sorted out, and you're ready to charge in and live your life for good, but now you have something to possibly protect. Once you become a father, it definitely changes your mindset and what you're willing to do. But at the same time, what does it mean to protect your child? Does it mean risking your life to make a better world, or doing nothing and staying at home? I'd imagine Hiro was pretty baffled when he found the baby, too. What's going on in his head?
Oka: I think Hiro's definitely a little bit shocked — he was not expecting it. And Hiro shies away from babies. After having a stern father figure and also going through what he went through with his mother, he's a little uncomfortable. He doesn't know how to behave around babies. So, there's definitely going to be a little comedy based on all that — you have two men and a baby. Rebel sent Hiro to find this baby. Will we find out more about Rebel and his/her connection to Hiro?
Oka: Well, you will find out who Rebel is Monday. You will absolutely know who Rebel is. Is it someone we know or a new character?
Oka: [Pauses] It will not be someone completely new. Hiro seems to have learned that he can be a hero without powers. Will that continue to be the case for him?
Oka: He's learned his lesson in not having powers. He's gone through his journey, but Hiro will definitely get his powers back — this Monday or in the next episode. But there's going to be a little twist to his power. It's going to be a little different. Could that twist have something to do with the show's commitment to no longer time-travel?
Oka: I can say we're definitely not going to have any more time travel. Being able to time-travel is so powerful. You can do too much and it creates a lot of headaches. So, in order to keep the story clean and cohesive, the writers have made a decision to do away with time-travelling. That aspect of the show has been pointed to in much of the negative press around the series. Has that impacted general fan reaction to you and your character?
Oka: When I've interacted with fans, they've all been very gracious. They still love the show and they still love the character. For me, watching as a fan, I think Hiro has gone through so much. I do want him to grow a little bit but still remain who he is. He's very pure at his core. And perhaps when trying to bring up the comedy, as seasons have changed, Hiro became more of a clown than he needed to be. Now he's not as naive, but he still believes in his comic book destiny. What's it been like having Bryan Fuller back?
Oka: It's been amazing working with Bryan. He's always been a fantastic writer and a fantastic friend. I loved Pushing Daisies, which didn't get the life span it probably deserved, but it's great to have him back. Having him be a part of that magical first season and then step away and come back, it brings back that energy and kind of an outside perspective. It's great to have a writer everyone respects and enjoys working with back in the room. And the show's going toward having smaller and more character-based stories, so having Bryan there really helps with that focus. Can Hiro and Ando exist without one another?
Oka: They compliment each other well. Those create something special. The whole is greater than the sum of their parts. They need each other, but at the same time, we've gotten to a point where they can go their own ways if necessary. What can we expect from Hiro and Ando as the season works toward the finale?
Oka: When Hiro gets his powers back, there's kind of a final mission. Rebel has something in mind for them once the current mission is over. So, we're moving forward to a finale that wraps a lot of things up. The volume started with Hiro being captured, so he knows that some of his fellow powered folk have been captured as well. He's going to have a hand in trying to fix that situation somehow. But it also forces him to make a choice, and he's going to have to make a sacrifice in a situation that could be life threatening. Can we assume that Rebel is going to become the leader of the heroes?
Oka: Well, you can assume anything you want. [Laughs]