Review Of The New V Series Pilot by Kwaku A.

The pilot opens with the lines of “Where were you when JFK was assassinated? Where were you on 9/11? Where were you this morning?”  Based off the 1980s miniseries (which I haven’t seen, so I wont compare to it), the show focuses on FBI agent Erica Evans, played by “Lost” alumni, Elizabeth Mitchell. The script slowly introduces each character: Erica’s son, Tyler Evans (Logan Huffman), Father Jack Landry (“The 4400’s” Joel Gretsch) , Ryan Nichols (Morris Chestnut), Valerie Stevens (Lourdes Benedicto) and Chad Decker (Scott Wolf) as they go about their everyday lives until one morning when they all start to feel slight tremors and then things get worse. Ryan sees an F-16 fighter jet drop from the sky and explode into a building, Erica gets trapped under rubble, and a large dark shadow begins to cover the
city, where “a single massive spaceship – two miles wide – has to rest, now parked over the majestic skyscrapers of downtown L.A.” And the ship is not just in Los Angeles, but there are a reported 29 ships, hovering all over major cities of the world. Then a phenomenon happens simultaneously to all of the ships world wide, and as people
look up at these ships, scared, and worried, they see the face of Anna (“Firefly’s” Morena Baccarin), the Visitor Leader, and the first act ends.

A lot happens in the pilot; Tyler and his friend, Bryce, become obsessed with “The Visitors,” especially to his mother’s displeasure. Many people see them as “hope” as they heal the sick (of course there’s the guy who couldn’t walk and now he can) and at the end of the pilot, Erica says that “they’re arming themselves with the most powerful weapon out there… devotion” (“The Visitors” start allowing humans to take trips to their spaceships, which becomes awe-inspiring
for those who go). The Visitors claim that they are far from home and require water and a mineral that is common on Earth to sustain themselves and in return, they will give them Earth technological advances… but of course this isn’t true. “The Visitors” have been on Earth for years and they plan is to kill every single man, woman, and
child. These aliens cannot be trusted and their stunning human beauty is just a cover up for the fact that they are reptilian underneath.

By the end of the pilot, there’s a small group of characters that want to take “The Visitors” down and the show sets up the show to what could be a promising series. Elizabeth Mitchell is perfect casting as the lead, but other than that, while I think the show has potential, I was still not that impressed. I found most of what happened to be
predictable (at least one of the main character’s is a “Visitor;” I didn’t find it very surprising, but others might) and as I mentioned earlier, I never saw the original “V” series. Also, it’s going to have to take very talented writers in order to give a series like this longevity, but that could be why ABC ordered a limited amount of episodes. Maybe I would have enjoyed the pilot more had it been two hours or maybe if the following episodes really improve. But as for
now, ABC has two high concept shows this season, “V” and “Flash Forward,” and I’m definitely much more excited for the latter.

Grade:  B

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15 responses to “Review Of The New V Series Pilot by Kwaku A.

  1. This is the first piece provided by someone that isn’t me. This comes from Kwaku A.

    At some point in the near future they’ll be posting things and updating them themselves. Until I get that all set up, I’ll be posting for them.

  2. Kwaku A?! Sure you don’t have a split personality? 😉

    But anyway, Flash Forward is Brannon Braga , that’s gonna spell trouble.

  3. RickyG, pretty sure it’s not me. I’ve seen THE WITCHES OF EASTWICK and V, V: The Final Battle, and V: THE SERIES.

    I’ll look at FLASH FORWARD at some point this summer. I’ll also share my opinion on V, etc. at some point.

  4. Seems pretty similar to the original series so far. The reviews for the original were similar to this one as well.

  5. AniMatsuri, I think it lacks a lot of what Johnsons’ V had going for it. The whole terrorist cell that ends up being Aliens is tough to swallow. The original and its take on Fascism was extremely well done, when Johnson left the sequel, both it and the series were crap in comparison to the original mini-series.

  6. I really wish ABC would premiere this in the fall instead of waiting till midseason – it’s the only new show I’m looking forward to other than Glee.

  7. I believe he mentions it’s the script in the review (or in the Eastwick review). It’s a real script though, I confirmed that.

    I’ve seen the episode and the FX were all right, I’d redo the Tudyk tear, but that’s just me.

  8. Are you sure that’s not a review of the pilot script?

    As far as I know the name of the character “Bryce” had changed prior to filming. And the review itself says very little about how the show looks.

  9. Trailers at Youtube look good. Here is a link to one of the better ones:

  10. I think they’re making a huge mistake bringing V back as a series. This story, to me, is best told as a mini-series, as it was originally. Independence Day on steroids, and actual acting, that’s how they should have marketed it and produced it, and just left it at that, see if the modern day audience was keen on it.

    A mini-series would have done very well I think, just from the freshening of the story and the audience wanting to tune in because they knew the original. That’s the most you can get I think. Look at The Day The Earth Stood Still, the Terminator series, all the apocalyptic remakes are all bombing, but at least the movie versions are bringing in enough viewers to make it profitable.

  11. Yeah, but they DONT GET IT. V was a message about how American society was turning into a Fascist state (and don’t get me started on how owning GM, banks, and insurance companies is similar to past historical nightmares) and the symbol V was for VICTORY. As in Victory against the Fascist state. The rebels spray painted V on their propaganda posters.

    They’re totally spinning it in a different direction. V worked as the first mini-series so well because it was a strong message and it hit home despite the SCI FI aspects. They were scary images.

    The series (and the 2nd mini-series) failed because they left that message and became something else. The fans of V are generally fans of the original mini-series who admit the stuff that followed was mediocre.

    When Kenneth Johnson was forced out (and he created V) so early during the 2nd Mini-Series the quality dropped dramatically.

    I wouldn’t mind a smart series, but we’re not going to get it, because these people behind it don’t get it.

  12. I think this fits the bill for your “why on earth did they make that?” post. I still don’t understand how this show, even the idea being pitched, can make it out of the executive conference room without somebody making the case that you just did, especially for a show with a history.

    I mean I could see if this was a brand new idea. Sure they’d only have similar shows to compare it to, etc. But this franchise is a known quantity. They know what worked and what didn’t. It seems like common sense to analyze that and take all the best things and move forward with that.

  13. Yeah but they aka “the execs” don’t live in the same world we live in.They see dollar signs and that’s it.I remember watching V as a kiddo and i’ll give this one a chance but it’s up to them if it’s gonna work or not.Just remember Bionic Woman and Knight Rider most recently.I wanted to see both succeed but we see where they are now.ABC really needs a few winners right now too!

  14. What do all those shows have in common Brian?

    All the remakes you mentioned failed and did so without the cooperation of their creators. In the BIONIC WOMAN case it too was Kenneth Johnson (who also created V, the original mini-series). Those shows had people who over saw them that understood good TV.

    The idea that the Networks have that Glen A Larson and Kenneth Johnson made “cheesy,” shows that wouldn’t work today is a load of nonsense. Some of their work was actually gritty and realistic (check out the original SIX MILLION DOLLAR MAN pilot/movie that show would have rocked). These aren’t has beens.

  15. So the 1st network to give Glen A Larson and Kenneth Johnson a show to do should have a winner on their hands?

    Why was Kenneth forced out after the sucess of the 1st V mini-series?