Liberation Day

VMartin spots Diana’s escaping fighter and alerts Donovan, who jumps into another Visitor fighter and forces her down in a remote valley on Earth. She tries to escape on foot, but Donovan still captures her.

One year after what is eventually dubbed Liberation Day, the heroes of the resistance are still the focus of international attention, some of it unwanted. Robin can’t keep the media away from Elizabeth, whose powers and role in the liberation of Earth remain the source of much speculation. Mike Donovan has returned to his job as a TV news cameraman, and has even landed Martin, who remains on Earth, a job as his sound man. Julie, now working for a corporation called Science Frontiers, is still trying to crack the secrets of the captured Visitor mothership, while Nathan Bates, the CEO of the company, is trying to enlist Ham Tyler’s help to wring those secrets out of Diana, who remains imprisoned, awaiting trial. Elias Taylor has started a successful restaurant, where Willie works as a waiter. Every Visitor who has remained on Earth must take pills every 12 hours, or the red toxin, still in Earth’s ecosystem, will slowly kill them. And as she is escorted to her trial, Diana is shot at point-blank range. But as Donovan and Martin try to follow the ambulance carrying her away, they see something suspicious – the ambulance goes under an underpass and doesn’t come out, but an 18-wheeler pulls out instead.

Donovan and Martin trail the truck to a distant hideout where Bates and Tyler plan to force Diana to reveal the secrets of Visitor technology. Martin knocks Donovan out and tries to carry out Diana’s death sentence himself, but she manages to kill Martin, take his last antidote capsule, and escape. Donovan and Tyler independent follow her to a radio telescope array, which she has used to transmit a homing signal, and a Visitor fighter soon arrives, getting her away from Earth and taking her to a new Visitor fleet waiting behind Earth’s moon.

Season 1 Regular Cast: Marc Singer (Mike Donovan), Faye Grant (Dr. Julie Parrish), Michael Ironside (Ham Tyler), Jane Badler (Diana), Jennifer Cooke (Elizabeth), Robert Englund (Willie), Lane Smith (Nathan Bates), Blair Tefkin (Robin Maxwell), Michael Wright (Elias Taylor), June Chadwick (Lydia), Jeff Yagher (Kyle Bates)

Order the DVDwritten by Paul Monash
directed by Paul Krasny
music by Dennis McCarthy

Guest Cast: Jenny Beck (young Elizabeth), Frank Ashmore (Martin), Michael Durrell (Robert Maxwell), Ed Call (?), Kirk Scott (?)

LogBook entry by Earl Green

Dreadnaught

VLeft in her grandfather’s care for a few days, Elizabeth has run away, hidden in a cave, and has begun a transformation which even Julie can’t fathom – and no other doctor on Earth has any experience with Visitor anatomy. When she finally emerges from her coccoon, she appears to be in her early 20s, and still human. After Julie and Robert Maxwell take her back to Robert’s home, they’re suddenly on the defensive as Visitor troops attack the house. They manage to escape with Elizabeth and hide out in Elias’ restaurant as the second Visitor invasion of Earth commences. Elias hasn’t forgotten his experiences in the resistance and has constructed an entire secret hideout beneath his building.

Order the DVDwritten by Steven E. de Souza
directed by Paul Krasny
music by Dennis McCarthy

Guest Cast: Jenny Beck (young Elizabeth), Michael Durrell (Robert Maxwell)

LogBook entry by Earl Green

The Deception

V (1980s series)Disoriented after the escape from the Visitors’ forced labor camp, Robin wanders aimlessly, trying to stay out of the sight of Visitor patrols until she flags down a motorcyclist – who happens to be Kyle Bates, Nathan Bates’ son, also a recent escapee from the same camp. He offers to give Robin a ride to her father’s ranch, but their trip is detoured when they witness the crash of a jet fighter in the California desert. The pilot manages to eject, but is dying of his injuries before he lands. With his last breath, he hands Kyle a pouch with instructions to deliver it to the resistance. Kyle tracks down Donovan and gives it to him, but Kyle’s connection to Nathan Bates earns him immediate suspicion from Ham Tyler. The message lists coordinates for a meeting where Donovan is expected to hand Elizabeth off to the New York resistance for her own safety. But on his way home, Donovan spots his son Sean, who has been captured by the Visitors. Donovan himself is captured and drugged, and wakes up in a room with Sean and Julie nearby, telling him that the war to free Earth has been won.

written by Garner Simmons
directed by Victor Lobl
music by Dennis McCarthy

Guest Cast: Nick Katt (Sean Donovan), Sandy Lang (Visitor Captain), Randall Brady (Pilot), Anthony Ellis (Checkpoint Cop), Howard K. Smith (himself)

VNotes: Though the computer in Julie’s office appears to be an IBM PC variant, its display, when shown in close-up, was generated by an Apple II computer in text mode. Even though Robin and Kyle were both prisoners in the Visitors’ work camp in Breakout, this episode seems to presume that they never met there – which, for the viewing audience, may be just as well since NBC didn’t air the episodes in the intended order, postponing Breakout until 1985, by which point the series had been cancelled. Howard K. Smith is credited, but does not appear in the episode.

The Return

V (1980s series)Donovan and Julie’s resistance cell is cornered, outgunned, and outnumbered: escape is unlikely, if not impossible. But salvation comes from an unlikely source: all of the Visitors on Earth are recalled to their motherships immediately, and hostilities are called off. Philip announces that the Visitors’ Supreme Leader has arrived, and desires a truce and a meeting with Elizabeth. The sudden cease-fire only reinforces Diana’s distaste for peace. Philip and Donovan agree to a demonstration of fencing – Visitor-style – but they also agree to disarm the swords’ supercharged blades. Diana tries to sabotage the truce by arming the swords by remote control, but the first time one of the swords slices into part of the training area, the two swordsmen put down their weapons. She hasn’t done away with either of her enemies, and worse yet, Diana now has to plan to assassinate not just Philip, but her race’s supreme leader.

telelplay by David Abramowitz & Donald R. Boyle
story by David Braff & Colley Cibber
directed by John Florea
music by Dennis McCarthy

Guest Cast: Judson Scott (James), Frank Ashmore (Philip), Marilyn Jones (Thelma), Ashton Wise (V Lieutenant), Tawny Schneider (herself)

VNotes: The Leader’s ability to communicate to and through Elizabeth may be the inspiration for the “bliss” effect used by Visitor leader Anna in ABC’s 21st century remake of V – a slight irony, since this was the final episode of the original V. This episode was written with a cliffhanger that has never been resolved on television or in other media.

During the scene of the arrival of the Leader’s shuttle, series composer Dennis McCarthy uses a musical theme that’s almost identical to the one he later employed for the arrival of “Judge” Q in the Star Trek: The Next Generation episodes Encounter At Farpoint and All Good Things…

Breakout

V (1980s series)Donovan and Tyler scuttle an undercover operation to save a rebellious teenager from a Visitor patrol, but this only invites the attention of an even larger force of Visitors. They find shelter in a nearby house, as well as useful information: Donovan was planning on pulling his son Sean out of school, but the Visitors have already “evacuated” all of that school’s students to an unknown location. The moment they break their cover, Donovan and Tyler are arrested by the Visitors and hauled off to a labor camp which seems to have minimum security. But the first time one of the inmates tries to escape across the sand that encircles the entire camp, he’s devoured by an alien creature placed there by the Visitors. Even with no fences, escape from the camp on foot is impossible. Donovan discovers Robin, already enslaved at the camp, and has to break the news to her about her father’s death. But there’s another prisoner of interest to the Visitors here: Kyle Bates, the son of collaborator Nathan Bates, becomes Diana’s pawn in an effort to force the resistance to hand over Elizabeth. At Elias’ restaurant, Juliet and the others find themselves at a loss for how to deal with Elizabeth’s seemingly instant transformation from child to young woman – and wonder how long they can conceal her in plain sight by not tipping off the Visitors about her rapid aging.

written by David Braff
directed by Ray Austin
music by Dennis McCarthy

Guest Cast: Pamela Ludwig (Annie), Xander Berkeley (Isaac), Christian Jacobs (Billy), Patricia Allison (Annie’s Mother), Charles Macaulay (Col. Sawyer), Burt Marshall (Steve), Herman Poppe (Vanik), Michael Abelar (Kyle’s Friend), Mary Baldwin (Guard), Fiona Guinness (Cafe Customer), J.D. Hall (Cafe Customer), Greg Zadikov (Kipper Cordisco), Howard K. Smith (himself)

VNotes: This episode, with its numerous graphic deaths – Visitors mauled to death by dogs, the victims of the alien sandworm, Ham Tyler’s habit of dispatching his opponents with brutal martial arts moves – was rejected during V’s original run, appearing only in post-season reruns after the series had already been cancelled. Its omission in the original intended running order interrupted a closely-linked quartet of stories that set up the landscape for the rest of the season. With Breakout dropped, the next episode (The Deception) opens with Robin wandering through southern California for no readily apparent reason (she had just escaped from the prison camp).

LogBook entry by Earl Green