All you'll ever need to know!
|Try some Instant Guides from earlier Cult Times|
A fleet of giant flying saucers descend
upon the capitals of the world (and this was over ten years before Independence
Day). On board the ships are the alien Visitors a race of
intelligent reptiles with a penchant for devouring live guinea pigs (the
snack you can eat in between meals). Masquerading as Humans, the
Visitors initially hoodwink humanity into thinking they are friendly
types but they are in fact nicking the Earths water and harvesting
live humans for dinner. Discovering the invaders' true intentions, a
small band of resistance fighters wage an underground war in an attempt
to save the world...
Background: Initially a two part mini-series, V was a thinly disguised allegory of life in an occupied country under the Nazis. A second mini-series The Final Battle followed which concluded the story. V the series followed and miraculously transformed the original dark premise into an hilarious high-camp Dynasty-in-space.
First Run: The original mini-series was shown in the US on 1st and 2nd May 1983 and The Final Battle aired the following year on 6th to 8th May. Memorably, both mini-series were aired on five consecutive nights on ITV in the UK as an alternative to the BBCs coverage of the 1984 Olympic Games. V the series, first aired from October 84 to March 85.
Number of Episodes: 24 altogether, including the five two hour episodes of the mini-series.
The Resistance:: News cameraman Donovan (Marc Singer) and scientist Julie (Faye Grant) lead the way with a band of willing followers who included friendly alien Willie (Robert Englund later to be the not so friendly Freddy Kruger in Nightmare on Elm Street); Robin (Blair Tefking) mother of the rapidly maturing Visitor/human hybrid baby Elizabeth (Jenny Beck/Jennifer Cooke) and the roguish Ham (Michael Ironside.
The Visitors:: Initially not top-dog Visitor, Diana (Jane Badler) rapidly rose through the ranks to become the single most memorable character in V. As the series progressed her hair got bigger and her lines got cattier. Other Visitor bitches included Pamela (Sarah Douglas of Superman II fame) and Lydia (June Chadwick).
And Isnt That... Lane Smith, now better known as Perry White in Lois and Clark, was Visitor collaborator Nathan Bates. Cult scream queen Sybil Danning also gets to eat rodents as Mary Kruger in the episode Visitors Choice.
Overdone Clichés: Faced with flagging ratings, the shows producers cottoned on to the fact that viewers liked seeing Visitors eating animals. Consequently, in later episodes, Diana and Lydia never seem to miss an opportunity to munch on a mouse or lick a locust.
Fashion Statements: Red was definitely the in colour for Eighties invasions..
Photo © TBC
Read more about your favourite programmes in Cult Times
Available now, £2.75 ($4.99). Can't find it locally? You can order it here