Headscratchers / Heroes The Haitian

It Just Bugs Me! entries for Heroes related to The Haitian. For other entries, see JustBugsMe/Heroes.

Here be spoilers, read at your own risk.

How the hell does everyone know to call the guy "The Hatian"?
Back in Season 1, The Haitian pretended to be mute. So how did Matt and others not involved with The Company know he was Haitian? Even though they never heard him speak, they all called him a Haitian (much like characters referred to Mr. Bennet as "the man with the horn rimmed glasses). I'm pretty sure there were others but I could be wrong; but definitely Matt called him that when he talked about his experience in the bar.
  • It's because the company found The Haitian in Haiti, whereupon at that point they probably put two and two together and made some base assumptions.
    • Yeah, duh. But how would Matt know that?
    • Duh, he's a mind reader. Maybe he "reads" a person's basic "stats" the first time he looks at them? Probably picked up something before the "static" kicked in.
      • Actually, Ted met him as a "student from Haiti" - he outright told Matt that, and told him to "find the Haitian."
      • Before his talk with Ted, Matt called the Haitian "Spooky Euro Dude" once.
  • Come to that, what exactly was the Haitian trying to gain by pretending to be mute in the first place? 'Company Man' reveals that the Company found him as a child. Was he still pretending to be mute then? Why? Or did he somehow reclaim his speech in the intervening years but not tell anyone?
    • This seems likely since - in Part Four of the on-line comic It Takes A Village - he was recruited by The Company the same day that he indirectly caused his father's suicide, when he was still somewhat traumatized.

Just what is the thing with the Haitian?
Where do his loyalties really lie? And why didn't anyone use him to wipe Adam's memories out? Or Sylar's? I can see not doing in Sylar's case, given that the Company seems to be of the opinion that Sylar's amount of abilities cause his madness, but it would definitely be the safest option with Adam.
  • I don't know why they didn't erase Sylar's memory, but they may have tried it with Adam and failed. Remember, Peter recovered from a memory wipe because of the healing factor he picked up from Claire - and Adam was the one who suggested that he could. Sounds to me like Adam has lost and regained memories, himself.
  • Even if they took all of Sylar's memories, there's no guarantee he wouldn't figure out how to use his powers again later and still be a danger. That also goes for all of the people The Company has been holding in Level 5 for all these years.
    • Which still doesn't explain why the Company didn't simply kill those people in holding cells in Level 5. Seriously, they're psychopaths with powers, and not even related to anyone at the company. Of course, then the writers would have had to come up with some other Idiot Plot for Season 3.
      • Historically, The Company has been shown to been run by some very arrogant people who were more interested in studying other people with powers and scientific phenomena rather than maintaining order. That's why they "bag and tag" random people rather than just killing anyone who might become a threat.

Why is the Haitian the only superhuman besides the power copiers who has more than one superpower?
He seems like a living plot device.
  • He's not, if you've seen the latest episode. Matt can not only read minds, but can also manipulate thoughts just like his father, and Kensei/Adam can not only heal, but is immortal.
    • Those are just a logical extension of their powers, which is, I suspect, the same for the Hatian Sensation - he makes people 'forget' how to use their powers.
      • I always assumed the Haitian erased memories by damaging synaptic pathways, which is consistent with the fact that Peter was able to regenerate his lost memories by healing his own brain in Season 2. Since Tim Kring has stated that all the superpowers are controlled by the brain, the power-dampening field of the Haitian means he can somehow interfere with synaptic activities with pinpoint precision, so that people's thinking processes work normally but superpowers don't work (at least those that are psychic in nature, like telekinesis or telepathy, as even the Haitian couldn't stop Nathan from flying away, and cellular regeneration must be located in every cell in the body, otherwise the healing blood plot would make no sense.) But yeah, plotwise memory erasing and power neutralizing are sufficiently dissimilar that if this were a roleplaying game, I'd say that character has two distinct powers, not just one.
      • All powers in Heroes are based in the brain. That's why Sylar is able to steal powers by doing something with the brains of his victims. And yes, this is one of many reasons why the healing blood plot doesn't make any sense. Telekinesis is no more "psychic" in nature than flight is, and the Haitian was also able to suppress Hiro and Peter's powers. The Haitian probably let Nathan fly away, since he was working for Angela Petrelli at the time. Otherwise, the Haitian's power seems to be most effective on active powers and less on passive powers. He wasn't able to stop Ted from exploding because Ted was losing control, and he needed infared goggles to see Claude because invisibility only requires active control when it's turned on or off.
      • You're misunderstanding what the above troper meant by "psychic". All the powers are based in the brain, but there are still those which use the mind more or less. For instance, both Eden's hypnosis and Matt's telepathy affect(ed) the mind directly, while Hiro's timespace manipulation requires "wishing very hard", and Peter needs to concentrate on particular people to mimic them when they're not around. On the other hand, the powers he couldn't nullify - Nathan's flight, Ted's radioactivity, Claude's invisibility - seem to affect the body more, working out of some kind of reflex rather than mental concentration. And it's the mind as a whole that the Haitian controls, not just memory (see: erasing people's minds into complete blank slates in the webcomic, not even leaving instinct left). Of course, this does add a question for the new series, as he can apparently also nullify Daphne's speed enhancement. And I'm not going to try to come up with an explanation for why the Haitian's power works like that; my forte is Magic A Is Magic A, not Techno Babble.
      • ...though, to break that self-imposed rule for a moment. I'm going to have to disagree with your comment about the brain base, because it sounds like you're saying it's exclusively in the brain. It's not. Ever since the first season, which you can't call too much of a retcon, there've been example of it being pegged as genetic: Mohinder's list being based on a "genetic marker" retrieved from Sylar's spinal fluid, Peter being described as using his power to re-sequence his own DNA to match the desired powers, Bennett referring to Sylar having the genes for telekinesis (or something to that effect)... yes, the powers are in the brain, but they're not only in the brain.
      • According to what this troper has heard, the Haitian has the ability to manipulate the mind, which can be used both in terms of removing memories and stopping power usage - so it's not really two powers so much as one power being applied in multiple ways.
      • Possibly well more than two. The Haitian has put people to sleep with a touch ( without apparently wiping their memory ), and seems able to go wherever he wants without anyone noticing him ( psychic stealth? ). I think he has also bounced/ignored psychic-type powers used to contact or find him, even by people well outside his vicinity.

Where the heck is the Haitian during all this?
I understand no one bothering to check up on him through most of the Volume, since a guy with the ability to nullify other superpowers wouldn't be much use when the main enemy is a bunch of normal humans with guns. But in the end when they realize they have to save the world from Sylar (again!), why didn't they at least make a cursory attempt to find this guy? He'd have been a big help in the final showdown against Sylar, and his presence would have probably allowed everyone to avoid the entire mess presented at the end of the Volume. Hell, he seems extremely dedicated to Angela Petrelli, why didn't she try to locate him and get his help?
  • The last time we see him, Peter sends him to track down Sylar. Since the plot/writers decided that the Haitian's powers can be overcome with enough plot ar— I mean, willpower, it's possible that Sylar killed him. He seemed pretty worn at the time.

Now that I think about it, why didn't Future Claire bring the Haitian with her when she went to capture/kill Peter and Future Sylar?
You're got the two most powerful Specials in the world, in the same place, and possibly working together. To top it off, one of them is the only thing in the world that still makes you afraid. How could you not bring the Haitian with you to face them? It certainly might have prevented Costa Verde from getting nuked.
  • Of course, in a world where Superhuman crime is rampant, the Haitian must be an incredibly busy guy. Claire also might have known Future Sylar was reformed and unwilling to use his powers even for defense.
    • On the other hand, she's going after Peter, who she knows has empathic mimicry. In a world full of people with abilities. And saying that, because of how many more people have powers in that future, I find it hard to beleive they couldn't get someone else who could block his abilities.
      • Do we know for a fact that the Haitian is even still alive in that future? I don't remember seeing him in any of the season 3 flash-forwards.
      • After Future Peter is killed, Present Peter runs away past the Haitian and IIRC knocks him out with a lid from a trash can.
      • We plainly see him blocking Peter's teleportation after he's been captured.
      • Ah. It seems I just wasn't watching/remembering closely enough.

Why didn't Noah or Angela call in The Haitian to solve The Sylar/Nathan problem?

Think about it - it's already been stated that Noah and Angela both have the means of contacting The Haitian even now and that he is still willing to work with them, even with The Company dead and gone. Why didn't Noah, who is rather paranoid about these sort of things, insist on The Hatian coming in to spotcheck Matt's work since Matt made it quite clear he wasn't sure he could do what was being asked of him and was just barely persuaded to try doing it in the first place?

And given that Angela has been seeing signs of Sylar starting to reemerge from Nathan for several weeks now - and that Sylar's "touch anything and learn the history" power was unnearthing things she buried a longtime ago (i.e. covering up the death of her best friend's daughter), why didn't Angela bring in The Haitian to finish the job that Matt Parkman started and refused to finish? We've seen that The Haitian has enough fine control of his power that he can erase specific memories and block powers from a distance. What is to stop him from removing the powers completely along with whatever vestiges of Sylar remain?

  • At one point, The Haitian flat out told Claire that his powers couldn't work on her because her healing factor had become strong enough that it would eventually restore her memories; apparently his power damages the brain cells responsible for memory. This seems to have been confirmed by Adam restoring an amnesiac Peter by getting him to focus on using his healing factor to repair the damage The Hatian did to his mind in Season 2. Additionally, Linderman was able to restore Angela's damaged memories with his healing touch power and Hiro's amnesia was cured by the powers of his healer mother in Season 3. Given that Sylar stole Claire's power - and that Angela and Noah both know this - it's possible they didn't bother calling The Haitian since they didn't think he could do anything.

Um... wait a minute. If Daphne can't walk without her powers, then why didn't she drop like a rock when she was inside the Haitian's null field?
I mean, her super-speed was shut off, so the Haitian was definitely blocking her power.
  • I always thought that the Haitian's power required focus on a specific target to be fully effective (i.e. it's not always turned on) and it was a direct psychic attack - not an area effect. I suppose he could disperse the effect to make it more of an anti-magic field for superpowers, but it wouldn't be as effective as if he were focusing on one target. Besides, if he canceled out all powers but his own, why would they pair him with Elle to hunt down Peter and Adam when they escaped?
    • This would explain a lot - such as why he wasn't able to shut down Nathan's powers before Nathan flew out of range in Las Vegas. And it would also explain Daphne, who was able to run out of the theater before The Haitian regained consciousness after being knocked out by Ando.
    • It's not entirely clear to work like that, since more than once we see "special" people acting confused as their abilities momentarily phase out without, right before we are shown a shot of the Haitian lurking around on some other business, apparently unaware that he is actively affecting anyone in the vicinity.
  • Someone on the Wild Mass Guess page theorized that the Haitian/Haitian Pills/Shanti Virus all severely weaken powers, whereas the Eclipse takes them away completely. Which is why Adam doesn't crumple to dust and why Daphne doesn't lose the ability to walk when exposed to the Haitian, and why Sylar was still Sylar even when he was infected with the Shanti virus.
    • This does raise the question of why Adam didn't turn to dust during any of the previous eclipses though. The healing factor is completely wiped by the eclipse. Even though Claire came back, it doesn't explain how a pile of dust could come back.
    • Not all "special" eclipses have the same effects.
  • While we're at it, didn't Hiro steal her medal from a track meet in the second episode of season 3? I realize that there is the Special Olympics, but she looks like she wouldn't even be able to do even that without her powers.
    • Unless the medal specifically says Daphne's name on it, I think it's safe to assume it belonged to her mother. In fact, the graphic novel specifically has a scene with Daphne and her mother walking through the cornfield together (before she lost the ability to walk), specifically with her holding a medal her mother won in high school.