Last week, the series debut of V, a redux of the ’80s sci-fi franchise pulled the second highest debut of the season with a 5.2 Nielsen rating and 14 million viewers. It scored big in the all-important 18-49 demographic and covered a lot of ground in its one-hour opener. Although the pace slowed considerably for the second episode of the series, V hasn’t entirely shot its wad right out of the gate. While this episode wasn’t nearly as action or info-packed as the expository first ep, this week’s serving of the Visitors started laying the ground for action to come this season. Not a bad second episode, even if there are some characters/plot points that are starting to look a tad predictable.
Erica Evans is in the thick of the action, facing down V’s on the work front with the disappearance/possible death of her partner, Dale Maddox; on the home front with her son Tyler who has developed a fascination for the V’s; and in her spare time tracking the Visitors with a list of contacts she pilfered. Interrogated about the disappearance of Dale, Erica is faced with some rather curious department heads who put her on the track of getting to the bottom of it. Having explained that there was no monkey business between the two of them and that Dale was more like a brother to her, she takes the show on the road and questions Dale’s wife about any activity on his part that seemed suspicious… Particularly since the arrival of the V’s. Mrs. Maddox is rather tight lipped, alluding that Dale had always been insistent upon keeping his work life separate from his private life. However, she manages kick out some grudging praise regarding the arrival of the Visitors, possibly hinting at her disdain for them and exonerating herself from knowing her hubby was packin’ lizard beneath his skin suit.
Erica’s not the only one to be grilled about the recent turn of events. The FBI pays a visit to Father Jack to interrogate him regarding the death of the V-informant who bled to death in his church. Additionally, Father Jack’s superior, the older priest, Father Travis gives Jack heat about his suspicions of the Visitors. (This could be a totally predictable plot twist, but I’m voting that Father Travis is really a V who had ascended the ranks of the clergy.)
While personality-wise, Erica is the new Marc Singer of the V reboot, Father Jack is pretty much the spitting image of Singer with a few character traits of the old resistance leader thrown in to round it out. Erica presents Father Jack with the list she had procured and requests his help in uncovering more of the mysteries behind the Visitors and gain more support in creating a stronger, larger resistence.
Back on the home front, Erica’s son, Tyler, hides his awesome new Junior Ambassador’s / V-letterman jacket under his mattress. While he’s attempting to hide his fascination with the V’s from Mommy, it still doesn’t him from stashing it his backpack and making a beeline for V headquarters directly after school. (I’m sure that will look stellar on young Tyler’s transcripts: Drama Club, Spanish Club, V Youth Ambassador League.) In an attempt to impress the Lisa, hot, blonde V Youth Ambassador who recruited him, he brings along a chubby friend to add to the ranks. It’s painfully obvious that Tyler wants In a completely different story, Ryan Nichols, the V-traitor/human sympathizer goes to a human contact to heal his gaping wound he sustained in the scuffle last week, which was seeping with green lizard skin. His contact drugs him and tells him that he can’t trust Ryan — or anyone for that matter in light of learning about what the V’s are capable of. Later, to prove a point, he calls an awoken and unharmed Ryan with details on Ryan’s fiancé, stating that if he can find her and learn things about her, so can the V’s. He insists that if Ryan really loves her, he’ll let her go so that she will remain unharmed.
Speaking of trust issues, Anna and her toadie/personal assistant Marcus discuss how little faith they have in Chad Decker, the television journalist/unwitting Minister of Human Propaganda. Decker manages to snow Anna and her minion, although he’s attempting to rally the human troops and subtly toss hints that the V’s cannot be trusted. With a cause born possibly more out of sheer vanity than journalistically-motivated altruism, Decker confides in his co-worker that although his interview with Anna pulled madd ratings, people tuned in to see her and not him. In an attempt to carve a name for himself and have people tune in to see The Chad Decker Show, Chad gathers a roundtable to discuss the pros and cons of the Visitors and platform their own feelings of trust or mistrust of the V’s. Anna isn’t sure what to make of this, although Decker justifies that he ultimately made the V’s look better. Anna just blinks rapidly and creepily in the camera in a reaction shot as Decker walks away smiling to himself.
We also learn that Anna has a Cher-in-Clueless sort of holographic catalog of outfits and that Marcus fails as a personal assistant for underestimating the power of a well-chosen outfit as it pertains to addressing geographic clusters of humanity. And that the V’s interrogate their subjects (one of whom is now Dale Maddox) by making them hallucinate that a batch of Raiders of the Lost Ark-like snakes are crawling all over them.
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