It's hard to think of a show that suffered such a brutal quality decline as NBC's big-budget drama Heroes, which features a first season of expertly crafted mystery and action that completely overshadows everything else the inconsistent series had to offer down the line.
Introducing audiences to an ordinary world inhabited by people inexplicably granted superhuman abilities, Heroes' 23-episode debut adopts an intelligently multi-layered narrative reminiscent of the recent hit Lost, blending together dozens of characters into one big, engaging mystery.
With its first season, a brisk pace and endearing characters made Heroes a hit destined for bigger things. Only, future instalments were forever derailed by the 2007 Writers Strike, and the showrunner's decision to slow things down going forward.
The baffling move to betray Heroes' first-season pace lead to all kinds of issues, giving characters poor send-offs, revealing answers to big questions with little care, and alienating an already inpatient fanbase. Heroes never recovered, and so its first season honestly remains the only one worth watching.