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Space-time manipulation

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Space-time manipulation

Hiro travels six months into the past.
Originally held by: Hiro Nakamura (lost),
Arnold (deceased),
Dahlia Hays (synthetic),
Cassandra Hays
Absorbed by: Peter Petrelli (lost),
Arthur Petrelli (deceased),
Tommy Clark
Ability to: Alter the space-time continuum
Examples of space-time manipulation

Space-time manipulation is the ability to alter the space-time continuum, enabling:

  • Time manipulation (slowing down, reversing, or stopping time).
  • Time travel (moving through time or "folding time").
  • Teleportation (moving instantaneously through space or "folding space").
  • Splitting (existing in two places at once by splitting oneself in two).





Hiro Nakamura

All of Hiro's space-time manipulation abilities require intense concentration, as shown by the way he typically closes his eyes and furrows his brow when attempting to invoke his power. His control has substantially improved over time, however, and he has far greater command of his abilities now than when he first discovered them.

One of Hiro's most frequently used abilities is "stopping time"—everything around him appears to freeze while he is able to move normally. This may be more a case of Hiro accelerating himself to the point that everything else seems frozen in comparison, since Daphne Millbrook, with her enhanced speed, was apparently able to "catch up" with him and move at normal speed during one of Hiro's "time stops" (The Second Coming). Hiro can interact normally with objects and people without them being "unfrozen" or aware of his activities. If Hiro is touching another person when he freezes time, however, they remain "unfrozen" with him (I Am Sylar). In addition, Hiro can slow time; other people and objects continue moving, but at a much slower pace (Godsend). On one occasion he actually reversed time (Unexpected); this event was particularly unusual, in that his manipulation caused a gun to actually misfire, as though time reversed for the bullet, but only slowed or stopped for the gun itself. This event suggests that Hiro can cause various objects to move through time selectively.

Hiro can teleport himself and other people through space instantaneously. Such teleports can cover at least intercontinental distances. Each time he has carried "passengers", he has been touching the other individual(s). Hiro has shown the ability to teleport himself, a horse, and the horse's rider simultaneously; Hiro placed his hand on the horse's neck.

Hiro can also move himself and another person through time into the future or the past. If moving into the past, he can alter history, but he apparently cannot alter history in such a way that he would eliminate his original cause for going into the past. Both Hiro and Future Hiro (see below) have experienced this limitation. Nonetheless, Hiro's trips into the past create a variety of alternate timelines. Both Hiro and Future Hiro have mentioned that careless use of time travel could cause a rift.

Hiro had relatively limited power upon returning from his attempt to save Charlie. He was unable to go back in time to try again to save her, and when attempting to stop time at the museum, he only succeeded in slowing it. Upon obtaining the sword of Takezo Kensei, he was immediately able to teleport himself and Ando through both time and space with relative ease. However, in the future he did not believe he could control his power enough to teleport back to the right time and place so his future self planned to bring him and Ando back until he got killed. With the encouragement of Ando and Future Mohinder, Hiro managed to teleport himself and Ando back to the time and place he wanted, the first time he was able to teleport to when and where he wanted to go. Afterwards, he was able to control his teleport ability easier without accidentally teleporting through time. He has since shown that he can use his power normally without a sword for a focus. Hiro's abilities rely heavily on his ability to concentrate and his belief in his own abilities, requiring a strong will.

According to an interview (see notes below), Hiro ages normally while using his ability. Thus, if "he lived a year in the past and returned to the present, he'd be a year older."

Hiro's ability has been suppressed by dosing him with fumes of opium, which breaks his concentration and thus prevents him from stopping time and teleporting. (Out of Time)

Although Arthur Petrelli stole this ability from Hiro, Matt Parkman Jr. has restored Hiro's ability (Cold Snap). It also seems that, whether he intends to or not, whoever he is in physical contact with can also move normally whenever he freezes time (I Am Sylar). He was initially unable to control his ability to teleport or time travel; he accidentally travels through time and space, mostly while in reflection on something he wants to fix (Cold Snap, Orientation). The only part of his ability that he had good solid control over after regaining it was to stop time.

Hiro has recently experienced negative health effects from using his ability, including headaches, nose bleeds, ear bleeds, and fainting. Mohinder Suresh believes that his body is rejecting his power for some reason and any more use of it could kill him. He has been diagnosed with a brain tumor that is killing him (Tabula Rasa). Side effects of his condition have also affected his ability, sometimes leaving Hiro frozen in time instead of freezing time to all but him (Orientation). Also, when stopping time to evade Sylar, Hiro kept getting headaches that seemed to worsen each time he did it (Once Upon a Time in Texas).

After a tense encounter with Samuel Sullivan, Hiro appears to have regained control over his powers. He was able to teleport and time-travel at will, but still had some minor issues, such as when he attempted to save Mohinder Suresh, but arrived ten minutes late the first time he tried. He still had the occasional nosebleed. Also, when he tried to teleport himself and Lydia back to the present, he had a lot of trouble trying to teleport, but eventually succeded with Lydia's help. (Thanksgiving)

Later, with his brain tumor gone, Hiro regains full control over his power and tests it by rewinding time for himself by about a minute and later easily teleports himself and Ando to the Carnival in Central Park. There, Hiro is asked to teleport dozens of specials and tells them to hold hands, but was unsure if he can teleport so many people. Thanks to Ando supercharging this power, Hiro is able to teleport dozens of people at once to an unknown location. (Brave New World)

Four years later, Hiro's power is demonstrated to also affect electronics such as security cameras, as is shown when Noah Bennet forces a security guard to show him footage from June 13, 2014; the footage and timestamp are shown jumping back and forth. However, this may have nothing to do with Hiro at all as a future version of Noah himself planned to erase the security footage. (Under the Mask, June 13th, Part One)

With Hiro trapped in Evernow, Erica Kravid was able to control his powers and use it to send supplies to the future. She had Hiro kidnapped and locked in the game as he would not willingly do this for her, stating he hadn't time traveled in years. (Game Over, June 13th, Part One)

After being freed from Evernow, Hiro froze time around Noah Bennet without including him in the freeze, but unlike before, he can now do so without physical contact. He also did so while not even in the same room as Noah. (Game Over)

After taking Noah back to June 13, 2014, Hiro warns him not to change too much and discovers that even with his abilities, he can't change the bombing of the Odessa Unity Summit as there are too many bombs and each change makes things worse. Hiro specifically tells Noah that even with his abilities, you can't change fate. (June 13th, Part One)

Hiro later has his ability once more, though inadvertently, stolen by Tommy Clark. He never regained it. (June 13th, Part Two)

Erica Kravid told Tommy that Hiro was unable to split himself in two with this ability when Tommy stated he could do so with his own possession of Hiro's powers. (Project Reborn)

Tommy tells Noah Bennet at one point that when changing time with his powers, Hiro instructed him that the time traveler needs to find "the tiniest thread, the smallest butterfly" to be able to change events.. (Project Reborn) Hiro had earlier told Noah something similar when Noah suggested calling in a bomb threat to save the Odessa Unity Summit: Hiro told him that they had to find the smallest thread to pull, the one that would unravel the least. (June 13th, Part One)

Future Hiro Nakamura

Future Hiro has the same space-time manipulation abilities as his "present" self, but he appears to be able to use them with less effort. He is also much more proficient in differentiating the teleportation aspect of his ability from the time-traveling aspect. He is also able to selectively include others in his time freezing, without maintaining physical contact, albeit with much more concentration. (Hiros, Five Years Gone).

During the Moab Federal Penitentiary breakout, one of the evolved human guards was able to prevent him and Peter from stopping time. It is unknown which one of them was responsible for this, or how they did it. (Walls, Part 2)

Peter Petrelli

When Peter mimicked this ability, he seemed able to do so without the intense concentration shown by Hiro.

Peter's first demonstration of the ability was to slow time when Mr. Bennet and the Haitian tried to subdue him with tasers. He apparently used the ability instinctively to slow time. When time resumed its normal flow, the taser darts fell to the ground instead of continuing their flight. It isn't clear whether this was a side-effect of Peter manipulating time (like Hiro's manipulation of the handgun in Unexpected) or the result of some other ability Peter used (like telekinesis). In The Line, Peter inadvertently tapped into this power while wanting to know what the future would hold and traveled forward a year in time. In this case, Peter's desire to know the future apparently activated this ability and sent him there. In Out of Time, Peter repeatedly tries and fails to access this ability to return himself and Caitlin to their own time. When he does return, its an accident moments after trying and failing to return himself and Caitlin to the right time. He is then unable to return to the future. During his time in the future, Future Angela tells Peter he has the same powers as Hiro due to having copied them from him and can travel in time and change history as a result.

In Truth & Consequences, Peter is able to speak with Hiro despite Hiro stopping time, indicating that he spontaneously used this ability to interact with Hiro.

In I Am Become Death, Peter demonstrates more advanced control of the ability, teleporting from New York to Costa Verde at will, without moving through time and without intense concentration either. After activating intuitive aptitude with Gabriel Gray's help, Peter is able to teleport and time travel to the correct destination and timeframe.

In Tabula Rasa, Peter replicated this ability from Hiro. He displayed every aspect of the ability except time-travel. When he teleported to Noah Bennet's apartment, he could not completely control the exact location he wanted to teleport to and he ended up in Noah's bathroom. He explained this with the fact that he had not teleported in a while. He was able later to teleport with more accuracy, teleporting to just outside a location he'd never been before with just an address and teleporting in between Noah and Jeremy despite them being close together. However, Peter was unable to stop time fast enough to avoid being shot by Jeremy. This is likely due to the fact that he was at point-blank range when Jeremy fired. Peter was also unable to keep time frozen in his injured state, with Peter collapsing and time resuming its normal course.

Future Peter Petrelli or Future Peter Petrelli

In the explosion future, Peter used this ability to teleport himself and others as well as to stop time (Five Years Gone). A different Future Peter has demonstrated teleporting himself and others, stopping time and traveling back in time. He has enough control over his ability that he is able to teleport others without necessarily teleporting himself. (The Second Coming). Like the present day Peter and Hiro Nakamura, Future Peter has also displayed the ability to take people with him through his teleports even in time (I Am Become Death).

Arthur Petrelli

Arthur has used this ability to teleport to Africa, and then to go back to Pinehearst Headquarters. (It's Coming)

Arthur was also able to time travel sixteen years in the past, to the Charles Deveaux's rooftop, and was capable of sending Claire through time and space without teleporting himself.


Arnold has used this ability to send Samuel back in time fourteen years to visit Hiro. It is as of yet unclear as to whether or not he traveled with Samuel; it's possible he sent him away in the same manner that Future Peter Petrelli teleported Matt to Africa without going with him. Samuel reveals to Hiro that the strain of using his ability caused his own condition: a brain tumor like Hiro's. Even when dying, Arnold is able to send himself and Samuel back in time once more when Hiro is trying to save Charlie and manages to trap Charlie somewhere in time at Samuel's order. Samuel is only able to return to the present by provoking Hiro to teleport them both back to the carnival. It's revealed that Arnold was waiting for Charlie outside the diner, grabbed her and teleported her to January 26, 1944 in Milwaukee before teleporting away, leaving her trapped there. Given this description from Charlie of his teleporting her, he seems to teleport people through time like Hiro does when he takes someone with him. (Brave New World)

Dahlia Hays

Dahlia was given this ability via an injection of the Gemini Formula, but has only been able to reproduce the time-slowing and time travel aspects. During the course of her training at the Quarry, Dahlia slows down time in order to get through closing doors and travels to the future in order to access parts of the facility that would be otherwise inaccessible. Dahlia seems unable to slow down time for any longer than around ten seconds at a time, but was able to navigate to the future and back with ease. (Heroes Reborn: Enigma)

Tommy Clark

Tommy has demonstrated the ability to teleport himself and objects between locations through physical contact. At first, Tommy wasn't sure where the objects he touched went. Later, he discovered that the objects went to whatever place he was thinking of. (Brave New World). While Tommy initially touched what he wanted to transport with his hand, he was later able to transport Emily Duval through time simply by kissing her. (Project Reborn)

Tommy is originally able to teleport at least one person with him (The Needs of the Many) though he can take at least up to three. (11:53 to Odessa) So far, he has always touched the person or object he wants to teleport, even touching his own chest to teleport himself. Notably, Tommy is able to teleport an object or another person without having to teleport himself. Tommy has also shown the ability to teleport an object that a person is holding without teleporting them just by touching the person (Brave New World) and the ability to teleport a person without sending something they are holding with them. (Project Reborn)

He appears to be able to teleport to any location on Earth, making his range effectively unlimited. He even claims that he can send the Eiffel Tower to outer space. (Game Over)

Its later revealed that Tommy's ability is an absorbed version of Hiro Nakamura's powers that work differently for an unknown reason. Along with his teleportation abilities, he is able to use the power to send people through time without displacing himself, similar to Arthur Petrelli and Future Peter. Before Caspar Abraham erased Tommy's memory to protect him, Tommy had a greater control over and understanding of this power thanks to training from Hiro all his life. (June 13th, Part Two) Without his memory of Hiro, Tommy believes himself to be a simple teleporter and is unaware of the other aspects of his power. Despite this, he manages to instinctively freeze time to save Emily Duval from Joanne Collins. Like Hiro, Tommy can manipulate objects that are frozen. Time unfroze when Tommy and Emily teleported away. (Sundae, Bloody Sundae) Tommy is later able to selectively unfreeze just his mother by touching her on the shoulder and concentrating. He is also revealed to have been able to freeze time before he lost his memory as his mother commented she wondered when he'd figure out that aspect of his power again. Anne also indicates that there may be more to Tommy's power than he is aware as Hiro had told her he was amazed by Tommy's power and stated that Tommy could do much more with it than Hiro ever could. (Company Woman)

Using a machine, Erica Kravid was able to harness Tommy's powers to have him teleport groups of people into the future who were all wearing special watches. When Tommy was trapped in Evernow, Erica was able to forcibly harness this ability by connecting a cable to the back of his neck for the duration of her need for his powers. With the machine, Tommy demonstrated the ability to transport thousands of people through time at once without strain, though he was shown to be tired the first few times he used it. (Company Woman, Project Reborn)

While in Evernow, Tommy was unable to teleport out, but his powers weren't completely blocked as he told Erica that he had "an eternity" in Evernow to practice his abilities. (Project Reborn)

After escaping Evernow, Tommy realized he could split himself in two with this power despite Erica telling him that not even Hiro could do that. After freezing time, Tommy was able to split himself into two different Tommy's by touching himself in the same way he would if he was about to teleport or time travel. The two Tommy's were able to operate separate of each other, but remained linked as shown by the fact that when one Tommy got the Kensei sword and put it on his back, it appeared on the back of the other Tommy 7,957 years in the past. Both Tommy's also possessed the same abilities, both being able to manipulate time and time travel. When one Tommy traveled back to 2015 after the separation, time was frozen around him after he'd left the future frozen. That Tommy was able to unfreeze 2015 without affecting the frozen future. When the second Tommy was done in the future, he merged himself with the other Tommy simply by touching his chest and disappearing as if he'd teleported away. (Project Reborn)

When explaining to Noah Bennet his efforts to change the H.E.L.E., Tommy told his grandfather that he'd tried changing things "a thousand times" but had failed, indicating he may possess the ability to rewind time. (Project Reborn)

After rescuing Noah from his apparent death two days earlier, Tommy states that he'd learned that to use his power to change time he had to follow "the tiniest thread, the smallest butterfly" when looking for the key to properly altering time while time traveling. (Project Reborn)

Selected Examples

Memorable Quotes

"The Yogis in India and the Aborigines in Australia, both can bend time and space."

- Hiro (to Ando) (Genesis)

"No one ever got laid by stopping the second hand of a clock."

- Ando (Genesis)

"Oh, it's okay. I keep secret. I bend time and space. Teleport into future. We are both special."

- Hiro (to Nathan) (Hiros)

"Hiro Nakamura can stop time, teleport by folding space. Theoretically, he can fold time as well."

- Future Mohinder (to Future Matt) (Five Years Gone)

"I was wondering when you were gonna figure that out again!"
"Its been one hell of a week."

-Anne is pleased by Tommy's restored ability to freeze time. (Company Woman)

"You can't be in.."
"Two places at once!"
"Even Hiro Nakamura couldn't do that."
"I can. Hiro Nakamura prepared me my entire life for this. And now, I've had an eternity in Evernow to practice... thanks to you."
"No, that's impossible!"

-Erica Kravid inadvertently helps Tommy Clark figure out a new aspect of this power. (Project Reborn)

"I tried everything. I went back a thousand times but we always failed. We... we needed you. So I went back to the...."
"You saved me. I would have died in that storm."
"Yes. I'm sorry, but you had to see this. I followed the tiniest thread, just like my dad taught me. The smallest butterfly. Save you, save the world. What do we do?"
"Take me back to Gateway. To the end of the world."

-Tommy and Noah discuss how changing one small event can change the entire future. (Project Reborn)


  • When talking about merely slowing down time at the Museum of Natural History rather than actually stopping it, Hiro blogs, "Instead of Stop, I casted Haste."
  • In an interview, Aron Coleite and Joe Pokaski explain that Hiro did reverse time with respect to Hope's gun in Unexpected.
  • According to an entry in Hiro's blog, Hiro's cell phone's memory isn't affected by time traveling. In another entry, Hiro says he can freeze time for one minute pretty comfortably.
  • In an interview, Tim Kring noted, "I didn't start off by saying I want a guy who can teleport. I started off by saying I wanted a guy who felt trapped in a life that was not his dream and what could be a power that would be most wish-fulfilling for that character? And that was the ability to teleport out of that life."
  • It is unknown if the unconfirmed ability called "transportation" is related to space-time manipulation.
  • Writers Joe Pokaski and Aron Coleite explained that Hiro doesn't actually stop time, he just slows it down very much: "Whatever a nano of a nano second is, that's where they live." This is why he is able to have a "normal time" conversation with Daphne, who moves at super speeds.
  • In a Super Bowl XLIII commercial where several characters suit up in football uniforms to battle against NFL stars, Hiro uses his ability to stop time, and run for a touchdown.
  • Masi Oka explained in an interview that having a time travel companion brought the terminal illness: "That was started the adverse effect in Hiro's brain. The power is meant to have a capacity of one. When you start adding Ando, Suresh, and other people into that world, it just a strain that's put on Hiro's brain."

See also

Fan Theories

Please refer to Theory:Space-time manipulation for fan-created theories and other speculation.

Evolved Human Abilities edit

Ability absorptionAbility replicationActivation and deactivationAdoptive muscle memoryAlchemyAlejandro's abilityAquatic breathingClairsentienceClairvoyanceCloakingCloningCyberpathyDisintegrationDream manipulationElectric manipulationElemental controlEmpathic mimicryEmpathyEnhanced hearingEnhanced memoryEnhanced strengthEnhanced strength and sensesEnhanced synesthesiaFire breathingFlightFreezingGravitational manipulationHachiro's abilityHealingHealing touchHeat generationIllusionImage projectionImpenetrable skinInduced radioactivityIntuitive aptitudeInvisibilityLie detectionLuke's abilityMagnetismMeltingMemory manipulationMemory storageMental manipulationMetal mimicryMicrowave emissionMiko's abilityMist mimicryPersuasionPhasingPlant growthPoison emissionPossessionPrecognitionPrecognitive dreamingPuppet masterPyrokinesisRapid cell regenerationSedationSeismic burstShape shiftingShatteringSound manipulationSpace-time manipulationSpontaneous combustionSuper speedSuperchargingTechnopathyTelekinesisTelepathyTerrakinesisUmbrakinesisWeather control

Evolutions Abilities

Accelerated probabilityAcidic bloodAge transferalAnimal controlBelief inductionCarbon isolation and formationConstrictionDanger sensingDavid's abilityDimension hoppingDimensional storageEmpathic manipulationEnhanced breathEnhanced teleportingExtraskeletal manipulationFireworks creationHealth optimizingInflammationLight absorptionLight manipulationNerve manipulationNon-biological duplicationPhoenix mimicryPlasmakinesisPrimal rageProbability computationRock formationShiftingTeleportationTemporal rewindWater generationWater mimicry

Graphic Novel Abilities

Ability augmentationAcid secretionAge shiftingAppearance alterationAura absorptionBliss and horrorBone spike protrusionChlorine gas exudationCrumplingDehydrationDisintegration touchElasticityElectrical absorptionEnergy absorption, transference, and redirectionFire castingForcefieldsFuture terrorist's abilityGold mimicryGranulationGreen energy blastImprintingLaser emissionLevitationLuminescenceLung adaptationMass manipulationMediumshipNerve gas emissionNeurocognitive deficitOil secretionOmnilingualismPlant manipulationSound absorptionSpider mimicryTelescopic visionWall crawling

See Also: Ability developmentAbility extensionAbility heredityAbility immunityAbility lossAbility theftBrain examinationBrain penetrationUnnamed abilitiesExamples of simultaneous ability useEye alterationList of abilitiesList of abilities with multiple usersParadoxProphecyRiftPowerExamples of space-time manipulation