Heroes Reborn has plenty of backstory to fill in between the four-year gap of Heroes’ fourth season finale and our October premiere, but already one of the series’ biggest characters has fallen. Only a few past cast members will reprise their roles for Heroes Reborn, but which hero surprisingly bit the big one in the interim?

You’re warned of Heroes and Heroes Reborn spoilers from here on out, but for anyone wondering what would send Noah “HRG” Bennet (Jack Coleman) into seclusion before the start of Heroes Reborn, it seems his adopted daughter Claire (Hayden Panettiere) somehow managed to permanently die in the intervening years, despite her super-healing and apparent immortality.

Not only did series creator Tim Kring confirm at the recent TCA press tour panel that Claire will have perished a year before Reborn opens, but also that returning characters would mostly play second fiddle to the new cast, somewhat in line with what Kring had originally envisioned as seasonal changes:

[Claire's death] sort of gets into some of the mythology of the new season … Jack Coleman as Horn-Rimmed Glasses [Noah Bennet] gets to uncover some of that for us.

When we went off the air we didn’t know we were going off the air. We left on an absolutely fantastic moment that set everything into motion of what we’re doing here. Hayden Panettiere’s character … For four seasons the whole world had never known there were powers. She basically outed it in front of the whole world when we ended.

This is closer to the original idea of origin stories. The primal existential questions of why and what’s my purpose? I always thought of it as a show that could repopulate itself. Falling in love with new characters is just as important as returning cast.

In other words, where the original series fought to save the cheerleader, and subsequently the world, the new one-off (for now) season will focus on the polar opposite. So reads the full Heroes Reborn synopsis:

A year ago, a terrorist attack in Odessa, Texas, left the city decimated. Blamed for the tragic event, those with extraordinary abilities are in hiding or on the run from those with nefarious motives.

Two such vigilantes include Luke (Zachary Levi, Chuck) and Joanne (Judith Shekoni, The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2), who are seeking to avenge a tragic loss.

Noah Bennet, aka HRG (Jack Coleman, reprising his role from the original), has gone off the grid but conspiracy theorist Quentin Frady (Henry Zebrowski, A to Z) finds him and opens his eyes to the truth behind the Odessa tragedy.

While in hiding, some are discovering their newfound skills. Awkward teen Tommy (Robbie Kay, Once Upon a Time) just wants to be normal and win the girl of his dreams, Emily (Gatlin Green, Criminal Minds), but normalcy is virtually impossible after learning of a new ability that terrifies him. Coming from a very sheltered upbringing, a bold and ethereal teenager, Malina (Danika Yarosh, Shameless), has been told she is destined for greatness. In Tokyo, a quiet and unique young woman, Miko (Kiki Sukezane, Death Yankee 3), is trying to track down her missing father while hiding an extraordinary secret that will make her a force to be reckoned with. Elsewhere, a different type of hero is emerging through former soldier Carlos (Ryan Guzman, The Boy Next Door).

Meanwhile, Erica (Rya Kihlstedt, Masters of Sex), the head of the highly successful tech conglomerate Renautas, has an agenda of her own.

For better or for worse, some are fated to cross paths with assorted heroes of the past, including Hiro Nakamura (Masi Oka), Matt Parkman (Greg Grunberg), Mohinder Suresh (Sendhil Ramamurthy) and the Haitian (Jimmy Jean-Louis), among others. Yet, together, their ultimate destiny is nothing less than saving the world and mankind.

Heroes Reborn will premiere its first two hours on September 24, but take a look at its Dark Matters prequel, stay tuned for the video game prequels, and watch the trailer below.

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