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Claire Bennet (Hayden Panetierre in Heroes)

Claire Bennet


Power Level:
Game system: DC Heroes Role-Playing Game

Context

Claire was one of the main characters in the 2006+ TV series Heroes. The series features the emergence of rare super-powers in a realistic modern world.

Though the first season was very strong, the show is widely considered to have then sadly disappeared up its derrière.


Background

  • Real Name: Claire Bennet
  • Other Aliases: Vivian Lewis, Claire Butler, Bonnie Monaco and the following nicknames: Claire Bear, the Cheerleader, Little Miss Miracle Grow, Barbie, Dorothy
  • Marital Status: Single
  • Known Relatives: Noah Bennet (Adopted Father), Sandra Bennet (Adopted Mother), Kyle Bennet (Adopted Brother), Nathan Petrelli (Biological Father), Meredith Gordon (Biological Mother), Angela Petrelli (Grandmother), Arthur Petrelli (Grandfather), Peter Petrelli (Uncle), Flint Gordon Jr (Uncle), Simon Petrelli (Half-brother), Monty Petrelli (Half-brother), Alice Shaw (Great Aunt)
  • Group Affiliation: The Company
  • Base Of Operations: Costa Verde, CA (formerly Odessa, TX and occasionally NY, NY)
  • Height: 5’1” Weight: 109lbs
  • Eyes: Green Hair: Blonde


Powers and Abilities

Claire has the power of rapid cellular regeneration. She recovers from virtually any injury in a matter of minutes. It’s nearly impossible to kill her. Even if she receives a killing blow, she will begin to regenerate until fully healed.

She has even tested it to the point of re-growing fingers and toes (and apparently ribs). It seems the only way to stop this is to leave an object embedded into a certain portion of her brain, most likely the medulla oblongata. But once the object is removed she will begin to regenerate as normal, even if she is dead.

Her regenerative abilities are carried in her blood much like Adam Monroe (who had the same powers). As such, they can be temporarily transferred to another person through even a small transfusion/injection. Her blood was used mixed with a victim of the Shanti virus to devise a cure for that disease. Judging from Adam Monroe, she will not age.

Healing factor

Since the only way he was killed was for his power to be permanently taken away (by Arthur Petrelli), it seems likely that this is also true for Claire. Due to her powers, it would be extremely unusual for Claire to, in DC Heroes RPG terms, spend Hero Points  on Last Ditch Defense. She would usually choose simply to die and allow her regeneration to resurrect her, rather than try to survive.

A common trick power for Claire is be, in DC Heroes RPG terms, Mind Over Matter. In essence, she ignores the pain which forces her body to endure far more than the normal person could. She can accomplish this since she knows she’ll easily recover.

She also had this power (at about 07 APs, contingent on her Regeneration) when Sylar turned off her pain receptors for a time (during Chapter 3: Villains) as part of a power subplot. She has since recovered her ability to feel pain, but it is unclear at this time if she retained Mind Over Matter as a permanent power.

Another potential trick power could be using her Regeneration to deal with poison, disease, suffocation and especially radioactivity. Additionally, while drugs have been shown to work on her and Sylar (after he stole her powers) at times, she has been able to use it to help ward off the effects of alcohol (allowing her liver to regenerate).

In DC Heroes RPG terms this would be considered a trick power (to temporarily ignore the limitation(s) on her Systemic Antidote, or gain limited Sealed Systems).


Video

Medley of the main Claire sequences from the first season of Heroes, in good quality.


History

(Modified from the Heroes Wiki)

Chapter 1: Genesis – In which Claire discovers her powers

Claire Bennet was born the illegitimate daughter of Meredith Gordon and Nathan Petrelli, two people with extraordinary abilities. Meredith has the ability to start fires with her mind and Nathan can fly. The pair believes the child to be dead when she is left in a burning house when a pair of men tries to capture Meredith, causing her to unleash her powers and burn the house down around them.

Claire Bennet (Hayden Panetierre) in her cheerleading uniform

Unbeknownst to them, Claire does survive and is taken by the same organization, called “The Company,” which tried to capture Meredith. She is given to one of their top operatives, Noah Bennet (the man in horn rimmed glasses) for safe keeping. He raised her as his own daughter with the help of his wife, Sandra. The couple also eventually conceives their other child, Kyle.

Healing, oooh oooh healing

Claire lives a normal suburban lifestyle in Odessa, Texas, until her ability manifests. Her entire world was turned upside down. She discovers that she has the power to rapidly heal herself, and asks her classmate Zach to video her jumping off an abandoned gravel plant and surviving.

Walking home, the two come across a train wreck, from which Claire rescues a trapped man, but never takes credit for the incident, allowing Jackie Wilcox, another cheerleader, to take the glory.

Meanwhile, Claire finds herself attracted to Brody Mitchum, the star quarterback for the school. However, their relationship quickly turns sour when he tries to rape her. He ends up inadvertently killing her when she is impaled on a tree branch.

Claire is taken to a coroner, but revives when the branch is removed from her brain. To avenge Brody’s wrongdoings, Claire drives herself and Brody into a brick wall, though Claire walks away unharmed. After finding out what happened, Mr. Bennet uses one of his fellow operatives’ abilities to remove all of Brody’s memories.

Save the Cheeleader, Save the world.

At her high school’s Homecoming, Claire is pursued by Sylar, but is ultimately saved by Peter Petrelli. However her friend Jackie, whom Sylar initially took for the cheerleader with powers, is killed. After the tragic events at Homecoming, Claire decides to tell her father about her abilities.

However, Claire is surprised to find that those around her are mysteriously losing their memories, and learns that a Haitian man, under the orders of Mr. Bennet, is responsible.

The Haitian befriends Claire, and tells her what little he says he knows of her past, including the fact that her mother died in a fire 14 years ago. After some research, Claire finds Meredith Gordon, her birth mother, and learns that Nathan Petrelli is her birth father, both of whom are evolved humans.

Prophetic painting of Claire Bennet

Life changes for Claire when Matt and Ted take her family hostage, her home burns, and her powers are discovered by Thompson, Mr. Bennet’s supervisor in The Company. Claire is forced to go into hiding from the Company. Eager to be normal and find out about her biological family, Claire travels to New York City and meets the Petrellis.

After saving her uncle Peter’s life, the two team up to help stop an impending explosion they believe Sylar will cause. They fight Sylar in Kirby Plaza along with Mr. Bennet and several people with abilities. But during the fight Peter begins to lose control of his powers building towards an explosion.

Mr. Bennet urges Claire to take his gun and shoot Peter (since she’s the only one mobile enough to get to Peter) but Nathan flies in and flies Peter high in the sky, where the explosion will do no damage.

Chapter 2: Generations – In which Claire gets a boyfriend

Claire attempts to return to a relatively normal life in hiding from The Company. She attends her first day of classes at Costa Verde High School, and is assured by her father that she’ll be fine, who also warns her not to stand out, or else the Company will find them.

At school, she meets a boy who can fly and connects with him. When talking about their abilities, Claire notices marks on his neck, and he recalls an experience with a man with horn rimmed glasses.

To hide her relationship with West, Claire lies to her father and tells her that she has joined the cheerleading team. However, her plan backfires and when she doesn’t make the squad. To pay back Debbie Marshall, Claire and West play a prank on Debbie while she drinks, causing her to get kicked off the team, and leaving a spot for Claire.

Claire Bennet (Hayden Panetierre) and a student friend

Claire and West continue their relationship and he meets Sandra. As the two spend time, West sees Noah and tries to leave, but Claire tells him that he is her father. Thinking it is a trap, he flies away. Noah shows a newspaper article about her prank, and warns that the family it is no longer safe and that they must move. Claire tells him that if they do, they are leaving without her.

At school on her last day, she is contacted by Bob Bishop (another member of The Company) at her cheerleader practice. He slips up and calls her “Miss Bennet”, and Claire runs home. When she arrives home, she sees her father’s laptop open with the image of the Mendez painting that shows his death.

Claire then warns her mother that her father was right and they need to leave town immediately. But Bob shows up with a gun, and surprisingly, Sandra recognizes him as the Regional Sales Manager for Primatech Paper (Mr Bennet’s cover job while working with The Company).

The Company’s Revenge

Bob takes Claire with him, and conveys to Claire how valuable she is to them, and takes some blood from her. Noah captures Bob’s own daughter, Elle and offers an exchange. Bob takes Claire to switch for his daughter (Elle) from Noah. Once she reaches her father they hug briefly then he pushes her into West’s arms so he can fly her to safety.

Unfortunately, Elle is able to zap West and Claire, which sends them plummeting to the earth. Mohinder (a scientist who helped them try to fight Sylar, but has now joined The Company) shoots Noah in the eye and kills him. Claire tries to run to her fathers side but West intercepts her. They land at her house and Claire is left with the task of telling her mom that her father has died.

Bob delivers an urn with Noah’s ashes to the Bennets. Claire, her family and West scatter the ashes into the sea. She tells her father that she should have listened to everything he said. When she sees Elle in a car spying on them, she confronts her, punching her hand through her car window and threatening to expose The Company.

Claire goes through Noah’s paperwork, preparing to go public with her ability and expose The Company’s secrets. While packing up her father’s files to bring down The Company, West arrives and tries to stop her from revealing his secret.

Angered, she gives him his file, and tells him “there is no ’us’ to worry about anymore.”

Afterward, Noah returns home, revealing to his family that he is still alive, thanks to Claire’s regenerative blood. He tells Claire not to expose The Company, and informs her that he has made a deal, and will again be working for them. In exchange, his family will be left alone to lead normal lives.

Chapter 3: Villains – Will Claire become one?

Claire soon learns that Nathan has been shot and rushes to try and help him. Before she can leave, Sylar arrives and begins to terrorize her with his only remaining ability, telekinesis. Claire manages to stab him but Sylar pins her to the wall and slices her skull.

He copies her power and then allows her to regenerate before he leaves. Claire discovers that her ability has changed and that she can no longer feel pain. Once again, she tests her limits by trying to be hit by a train, but is stopped by Peter.

Soon after, she learns that the most deadly and twisted prisoners ever captured by The Company, those from Level 5, have escaped. Frustrated at letting herself be victimized by Sylar, Claire begs Noah to make her his partner, but Noah instead reveals that Meredith will be protecting the family.

Meredith teaches Claire how to fight and ends up torturing her inside of a shipping container. Claire lies and says that she will not hunt villains, but soon leaves to bring in Stephen Canfield, one of the escapees. Upon learning that Stephen is not a monster, Claire helps him find his family.

Escapees

Later, Claire is shocked when she learns that Sylar has joined The Company as her father’s partner. When Noah treats Stephen like a tool, she is briefly tricked by Sylar into believing that Noah hates all evolved humans.

Future version of Claire Bennet (Hayden Panetierre)

Claire returns home and teams up with Sandra to find Meredith, who went after another escapee, Eric Doyle, to look for Claire. She defeats Eric Doyle and, after returning home, runs into Elle. She and Elle travel to a new organization claiming to be able to help people with abilities, Pinehearst, to fix their malfunctioning abilities.

But upon arrival, they find Peter, who is now powerless. Claire helps Peter and then tells Nathan and Tracy where Arthur is.

Pinehearst soon begins looking for Claire, who is believed to be the Catalyst. Claire becomes protected by The Company and Noah takes her to the Canfield home to properly train her. Elle and Sylar come looking for her and Claire ends up being shot. With the eclipse in place, Claire does not heal and actually dies.

She regenerates as soon as the eclipse is over and is then rescued from a home invasion by Hiro Nakamura, who takes her 16 years into the past.

Claire convinces past Noah not to take Claire back to the Company and successfully saves herself from becoming the Catalyst. Arthur tracks them down and sends Claire back to the present where she, Angela, Noah and Meredith prepare to bring down Pinehearst. Sylar intervenes and holds all four of them prisoner with Primatech. He attacks all of them until Claire manages to kill him.

Chapter 4: Fugitives – In which Claire plays hero

Two months later, Claire lives with the feeling that Sylar is still alive and killing. She overhears a conversation between Angela and Nathan and learns that the government is rounding people up. She warns Matt Parkman, but both are quickly captured. Claire is given a free pass by Nathan, but she still gets onto Flight 195 and frees the prisoners.

After the plane goes down, Nathan sends Claire back home, where she is contacted by a mysterious stranger using the name “Rebel.” She is given the mission to protect Alex Woolsy from Noah and she hides him in her house. As two government agents, Rachel Mills and Jason Pierce, search for Alex, Claire and Sandra manage to send him out of the town. They return home and find Eric Doyle, who has received a message from Rebel instructing Claire to help him.

Claire gets a cover job at the comic book store before saving Eric from Rachel. She gives him a new identity and is soon saved by Nathan after her free pass is taken away. The two of them fly to Mexico, where they bond as father and daughter. They are contacted by Angela, who asks to meet with them at the Coyote Sands.

Sylar again

Nathan and Claire arrive there and help Angela, Peter and Noah dig up the bones of the prisoners that were once kept at the sands. Angela explains that in 1961 the government rounded up people with abilities and put them in the camp, but due to some circumstance, they were all killed. She also privately tells Claire how much she admires her.

After a confrontation with Alice, Claire’s great-aunt and Angela’s sister, Claire and the others decide to form a new Company together.

When the family learns that Sylar has taken Nathan’s form, Nathan rushes to Washington to stop him. Claire, Angela and Noah attempt to drive there but they are stopped by Noah, who suspects the government is close. Claire and Angela escape capture and arrive at Washington, where they part ways.

Claire goes to whom she thinks is Nathan, who turns out to be Sylar and captures her. Sylar attempts to remove Claire’s hatred for him but ends up throwing her away. Claire is unable to help when Peter and Nathan arrive to fight Sylar, and, after Nathan and Sylar fly away, she goes with Peter to save the president. Claire later attends the funeral of “Sylar” and expresses her shock at the fact that he is really gone.


Description

Claire is a bright-eyed blonde teenager. She has a genuinely sweet disposition and often wears her classic cheerleader costumer in the colors of what school she’s at. When not wearing her cheerleader outfit, she usually dresses in jeans and a fashionable top.


Personality

Early in the series, Claire was an innocent bright faced girl who desperately wanted to be normal and accepted. She was constantly trying to prove her worth to herself and her adopted family, especially her father. With the help of her best friend, Zach, she came to realize that her powers were special and what other people thought didn’t matter so much.

She began to use her powers to try to help others and wanted to help save the world. At this time her Motivation was Unwanted Power.

As she learned of her fathers’ deceptions and manipulations, she began to become more disillusioned. She became more rebellious and even a little paranoid (not without good reason). However, she still did her best to help people in some way.

Sylar

Once Sylar took her power, Claire became more cold and hardened. During the time she couldn’t feel physical pain, she strived to hide her emotional pain as easily. Once pain returned, she still felt the need to try to capture those powered people who were dangerous and eventually find ways to keep others out of the government’s hands once they were being rounded up.

She ultimately wanted to find and avenge Sylar’s theft of her abilities. This is when her Motivation became Seeking Justice.


Future choices

In the future, we have seen two totally different Claires. One appeared well adjusted and engaged to a young Texas man. While she was hiding from the government, she appeared relatively happy in this future until Matt Parkman found her and took her in.

In the other future, she was a cold and ruthless killer. She’d grown up in her (adopted) father’s image and didn’t take crap from anyone. This Claire seemed to have a higher Body and Firearms skill, around 5APs of each and possibly even her Martial Artist was at an equal level.

She also had no qualms about killing her own uncle, Peter, to achieve her ends or because she believed he was dangerous. While the most recent events seem to lean toward Claire taking the latter path, it is unclear which future Claire will choose or if one somehow flows into the other.


Quotes

Claire: “My life as I know it is over, okay ? I’ve got the Bishop game next week, SATs in October, Homecoming’s in three weeks from today, and I’m a freak show !”
Zach: “You’re being a little dramatic, don’t you think ?”
Claire: “No ! I don’t think ! I have busted, like, every bone in my body, stabbed myself in the chest, I’ve shoved a two foot steel rod through my neck, and I don’t have a scratch on me !”

Jackie: “I thought you were grounded.”
Claire: “It didn’t take.”

Claire: “You hurt him, and I swear I’ll hunt you down and kill you.”
Sylar: “From cheerleader to stone-cold killer. Who’s the monster now ?”
Claire: “You are.”

Mr. Bennet: “I know you’re lying.”
Claire: “Well, I did learn from the master.”

Claire: “I’ll keep trying to kill you for the rest of my life.”
Sylar: “Everybody needs a hobby.”

“I have a plan. I just haven’t thought of it yet.”

“Nothing is inevitable. The future is not written in stone !”

“Don’t you know ? I’m the Defensive Player of the Year !”

“Being a cheerleader is hard work ! Hard, treacherous work !”

“I’ve died before ; it’s no big deal.”


DC Universe History

Claire could be dropped into the DCU as is with little impact. It might be interesting to have a hero just fall short of saving her life only to realize later that she’s able to get back up anyway. Perhaps her blood was used in addition to the nanites that created Resurrection Man.

If she truly proves to be immortal she could always show up in one of the futures (like LEGION or even a Kingdom Come timeline) as a much older and wiser character.


Marvel Universe History

If you’re using the Marvel continuity, she could be related to Wolverine or a replacement for X-23. Even if she isn’t, it’s possible that Mr. Bennet was aware of the experiments as part of the Weapon X project and this contributed to his protectiveness over Claire.

Eventually the Weapon X project might become aware of Claire and want to give her an adamantium skeleton. If they realize her blood can temporarily confer the power to regenerate, they might even go so far as using her to create a factory of adamantium laced super soldiers complete with a regenerative medical facility where they can get a small transfusion to instantly recover from a mission.

You could also make her X-23 in the MU. Replace Sylar with Sinister or maybe Mimic (if you want to make Mimic much more evil). It would be easy to start her off before the Weapon X Project and show her progression fairly along the lines of the Heroes series but Marvelized. It’s pretty easy with her background and events of the series to just tweak it a bit.


DC Universe History

Finally, you could use the future version of the cold-hearted killer Claire as a villain in any continuity. Imagine Claire taking over The Company, SHIELD or LEXCorp by a combination of seduction, manipulation and assassination. After all, she could fake her death and pick up a new identity anytime.

A vampish Claire who can appear sweet and innocent when she wants to could really wreak havock on any hero group. she could appear to be the victim while really becoming the master manipulator behind the scenes. If you use both her and Sylar, perhaps she is using the heroes as bait to lure Sylar out of hiding so she can use something she believes will kill him once and for all, never mind that it could kill the heroes as well.


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Game Stats — DC Heroes RPG Print Friendly

Tell me more about the game stats

Claire Bennet

Genre: The genre of the show starts being very close to the real genre but has progressed into a more heroic genre as the seasons move on.

Dex: 03 Str: 02 Bod: 03 Motivation: Seeking Justice (previously Unwanted Power)
Int: 04 Wil: 03 Min: 04 Occupation: Cheerleader
Inf: 04 Aur: 05 Spi: 04 Resources {or Wealth}: 003
Init: 013 HP: 030

Powers:
Regeneration: 13, Systemic Antidote 13, Flame Immunity 05

Bonuses and Limitations:

  • Regeneration works beyond death.
  • Regeneration does not function if one spot in her neck/skull (presumably her medulla oblongata) is obstructed. Once the object is removed, she will begin to regenerate as normal regardless of her current Body condition.
  • Regeneration may be substituted for Body for the AV/EV of a Recovery check against damage that would normally kill her.
  • Regeneration and Systemic Antidote are usable on others (with an injection of Claire’s blood).
  • Systemic Antidote is elementally linked with Regeneration but does not work against drugs, just disease and radiation.
  • Regeneration does allow re-growing lost limbs and other body parts.

Skills:
Acrobatics: 04, Martial Artist: 04, Thief (Stealth): 04, Weaponry (Firearms): 03

Note:
Martial Artist and Weaponry are as of her training with Meredith and Noah, her initiative would have been 11 before that, as well. Her Regeneration and Systemic Antidote likely started around 10 APs and have increased through experience within Season 1.

Advantages:
Attractive, Expertise (Cheerleading), Local Hero (Union Wells High School), Immortal (contingent on Regeneration), Misc: Immune to Pain (Sylar turned off her pain receptors which lasted for much of Season 3) consider this a 25AP increase in RV against any attack that relies on pain.

Connections:
Noah Bennet (High), Sandra Bennet (High), Kyle Bennet (High), Nathan Petrelli (High), Meredith Gordon (High), Angela Petrelli (Low), Arthur Petrelli (Low), Peter Petrelli (High), Flint Gordon Jr (Low), Hiro Nakamura (High), Zach (High), Matt Parkman (Low), The Company (Low after Season 1), West Rosen (High)

Drawbacks:
Age (15 as of Chapter 1), Enemy (Sylar), Innocent (until she discovered her father’s activities with the Company), Misc: (season 1) any “bashing” attack should considered “killing” damage in terms of doing negative APs of Body damage.


Design Notes

I went with Regenerations with a bonus of working beyond death over Invulnerability since 1) she clearly has Regeneration and 2) it does seem to take slightly varying amounts of time for her to get back up after being “killed,” but it’s always within a couple of minutes. Once she starts Regenerating, she heals up pretty quickly, usually within seconds.


By Adam Fuqua

Source of Character: Heroes Television show as played by Hayden Panetierre

Helper(s): NBC.com, heroeswiki, Eric Langendorff, Bryan Gittens, Kal-El Vigilante (he posted a .1 beta a long time ago), Peter Piispanen, Malcolm Roberson, Roy Cowan, Derek Estebrook

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