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V (2009)

It started out with a bang. Aliens were invading, and no one had any idea what to do. A small, tight-knit group of vigilantes banded together, swearing to expose the corruption and seemingly malicious plans of the esoteric (and possibly man-eating) Visitors. Then V went on a four-month hiatus, and the magic just hasn’t been back since.

When the show returned on March 30, I didn’t know. I had long blotted V out of my TV watching schedule, and I didn’t actually realize I had missed the premiere until nearly three weeks later when I spotted an ad for another episode on Hulu. Needless to say, I should have noticed the preview and gone on my merry way. I would have been content with the four episodes from Fall 2009 and could have drawn up my own conclusions. But instead I clicked play and watched not just the fifth episode but also the sixth. I guess I kept hoping the charisma of the first episodes would be recaptured in its successors. But the enchantment never came.

The special effects of the most recent episodes have been a travesty. I remember the awe I felt in the fall as I watched Tyler board the V ship, witnessing the interior of the engine room--everything was spectacular.

In “Pound of Flesh,” I found myself searching for a green screen. Whenever aboard the previously stellar space ship, elements rang untrue. The CGI backdrops seemed reminiscent of episodes of Sanctuary--back when it was a small-budgeted web series.

The show’s plot also leaves something to be desired. In the past two episodes, we’ve gotten the priest infected with the V’s special R6 vaccine (which you know will have long, drawn-out cosmic repercussions), the extortion of a terrorist for aid in building a Fifth Column army (currently consisting of five people versus thousands of Vs), and an unprecedented V/human hybrid baby (does this scream Charmed circa 2002, anyone?--and it wasn’t even original then). What started out as a gripping extraterrestrial drama has turned into Days of Our Lives: Alien Invasion. A gorgeous, talented cast is just going to waste here.

My suggestion to fans of the first four episodes who haven’t seen the new ones: stay far, far away. As far away as you would stay if you saw one of the pilot episode’s motherships encroaching on your town. Hold tight to your memories of what looked to be the hit new show of 2009 because the V invasion has ended.





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