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Episode Studies by Clayton Barr
enik1138 at popapostle dot com
V: Matters of Trust "Matters of Trust"
V: The Final Battle (part 2, hour 2)
50:13-1:32:03  on Side 1, Disc 1 of the DVD set
Teleplay by Brian Taggert and Diane Frolov
Story by Lillian Weezer & Diane Frolov & Peggy Goldman & Faustus Buck
Directed by Richard T. Heffron

Suspicions mar Julie’s return; the Visitors enact their plan to drain all water from California within 30 days.

(This episode begins with Ruby's funeral and ends with Robin giving birth.)

Read the story summary of the mini-series at the V Wiki

Didja Know?

For the title of this hour, I used chapter title 15 on the DVD. The title relates to the resistance members trust of Julie after her captivity aboard the mothership, Mark and Maggie's trust issues with each other, and Martin's disloyalty to Diana.

Didja Notice?

Ruby's grave, as revealed at 47:47 on the DVD, looks more like the grave of a beloved pet than of a person! And how did the Resistance get a hold of Ruby's body for the funeral? Or did they? Maybe that's why the grave seems small, they don't have her body and just buried something symbolic of her at the site.
Ruby's grave

When the others pray for Ruby over her grave, notice that neither Tyler nor Chris join in the prayer.

When Donovan's young son is awakened from his pod on the mothership at the behest of Eleanor, Brian says, "I know somebody who'll be very happy to see you, Sean Donovan." The novelization reveals that it's not Eleanor, but Diana, he's thinking of!

Donovan and Julie are assigned to infiltrate the Visitor pumping station. But aren't the two of them among the most likely of Resistance members to be recognized by Visitor security?!

Donovan and Julie arrive at the pumping station in a Visitor automobile, a 1984 Dodge 600. This model is seen several times in this mini-series as the "official" Visitor auto!

There is some hard-to-read Visitor writing on the fence at the pumping station at 52:18 on the DVD. V writing V writing

At 58:55 on the DVD we're told that Willie has just had minor surgery. For what? We're never told. Presumably it was just to get some below-the-surface tissue samples.

When Robin goes into convulsions, Willie is able to remedy them, saying the convulsions are common among Visitor females when they are near their time to give birth. It seems a little odd that Willie knows how to apply pressure to a point on the female's back to relieve the convulsions but, then again, maybe it's the norm in Visitor culture.

Willie is now wearing a dark glove on his left hand to cover where the synthetic skin was torn off. Too bad it wasn't his right hand in homage to actor Robert England's Freddy Krueger character!

During the resistance briefing on the Visitor water-pumping plant, Donovan says the laser defenses pulsing through the tunnel into the plant will be shut off for 12 minutes while the Visitors switch to the power grid in Oregon. Why are the Visitors switching to another power grid? We're never told.

At 1:03:52 on the DVD, Mark and Maggie agree to get married as soon as they get back from the mission. In a Hollywood script that's a sure sign that one of them is about to die!

At 1:05:40 on the DVD, Julie clutches her Heckler & Koch P7 pistol during the pumping station raid.

At 1:05:42 on the DVD, as Julie realizes she's holding the gun in her left hand and switches it to her right, she also finds that the right hand is shaking as she tries to hold the weapon in it.

At 1:09:03 on the DVD, as Donovan catapults himself feet-first at the Visitor watchman to knock him out, it is obvious, especially in frame-by-frame, that Marc Singer's feet never actually make contact with the other actor! For one thing the Visitor actor waits a little too long to react and throw himself back from the force of the kick.

At 1:11:07 on the DVD, Donovan seems to knock out a Visitor guard just by slamming the guard's back against the wall. The guard's head never hits the wall and it's helmeted besides!

There is a lot of Visitor signage in the pumping station but most of it is at too far a distance to make out. There are some signs legible at 1:10:09 and 1:11:15 on the DVD. V writing   V writing
       
At 1:12:00 on the DVD, a Kohler packing box is seen. Kohler is a manufacturer of plumbing products and bathroom fixtures.
Another couple of Visitor signs at the plant are just barely legible at 1:15:20 on the DVD. V writing
   
After the bombs blow and all the water in the pipelines to the mothership comes cascading back down through the waterways, it's a bit ironic that heroic victory music is playing while we are shown scenes of a dam bursting, a bridge wiped out, buildings destroyed, and cars (presumably driven by people!) falling into the deadly, rushing waters! (The flood footage was derived from the 1974 film Earthquake. Thanks to Gino Marroquin for the source tip!)
Flood water Flood water
   
Flood water Flood water
   
At 1:18:29 on the DVD, we see a rifle-toting guard at the resistance ranch headquarters standing on crutches! That's dedication! guard on crutches

The caves where the Visitors and resistance make the trade for Sean are the Bronson Caves in the Hollywood Hills, right below the famous Hollywood sign. Many films and TV shows have shot there. Most famously, one of the caves there is the mouth of the Batcave in the 1960's Batman show.

When Sean is returned he appears to be clothed in a Visitor Youth uniform.

When Donovan trades himself to the Visitors in exchange for his son, he warns the resistance they better move their HQ again and Tyler says he knows a place. It turns out to be an old jail or prison building!

Steven knows that Tyler is known as the Fixer.

When Robin's water breaks at 1:26:11 on the DVD, notice that on the floor (and on her socks) the water is green!
Robin's water breaks Robin's water breaks

When Martin opens the airshaft at 1:26:55 on the DVD, he shoves Donovan through and then clambers in himself. But he doesn't appear to close it behind him! Isn't that just advertising their escape route?

I am noticing that throughout the series Frank Ashmore plays Martin with a paranoid flair. Whenever he is acting in his Fifth Column capacity he is looking always looking around him suspiciously.

At 1:28:18 on the DVD there is a subtle shift of the scalpel from Julie's left hand to her right. A nice, almost unnoticeable touch by actress Faye Grant.

At 1:30:30 on the DVD, Father Andrew crosses himself when the reptilian baby emerges.

Of the twin babies, one appears to be human and the other Visitor. But each has a small physical trait carried from the other half of its dual-species parentage. Obviously, the human girl has a forked, snake-like tongue. And the reptilian boy has blue human eyes with round pupils instead of the red, vertically-slitted ones we've seen on the unmasked Visitors.
baby Elizabeth reptilian baby
   
 

V novel Notes from the V mini series novelization by A.C. Crispin

(The page numbers come from the 1st printing, paperback edition, published May 1984)

Pages 305-324 cover the events of "Matters of Trust"

Page 305 suggests that Donovan and Julie's reconnoiter of the water pumping facility is 10 days after her rescue from the Visitors.

Page 306 describes how Stanley and Lynn Bernstein reported to the resistance that, in a drunken frenzy, Daniel bragged about killing Ruby.

Page 306 says that the voice modulators obtained by Tyler to mimic the resonating quality of Visitor voices were made by a network engineer in Japan. And here in the novel they are described as being worn on the chest, not the throat as in the mini-series.

In a scene not in the mini-series, after getting pictures of the water pumping plant, Donovan and Julie scout the surrounding hills for avenues of escape in their upcoming raid to blow up the facility.

Page 308 goes into some more detail about the conversion process as experienced by Julie. She says drugs were used to put her into a state like hypnosis. She says that everything she's ever been afraid of, no matter how disgusting or private, appeared in the induced nightmare fantasies.

Instead of taking place in a sleeping car of the train at the resistance ranch HQ as it does in the mini-series, here in the novel Donovan and Julie's love scene takes place in the tall grass near the water pumping facility after their scouting mission.

On page 310, waking up in the grass after lovemaking, Julie finds that her bare bottom has become sunburned!

The novel devotes only one paragraph to the mission of blowing up the pumping station!

Page 313 briefly describes Donovan and Julie spending an evening watching Attack of the Killer Tomatoes over a joint and a bottle of Liebfraumilch (a German white wine).

Pages 314-316 contain a scene not in the mini-series. After the Visitor announcement about Sean on TV, Donovan and the other resistance members discuss their options. Donovan has met with Martin to get the lowdown on what the Visitors want...namely Donovan. Donovan considers taking some kind of poison before turning himself over, one slow-acting enough that it will allow him to surrender and be delivered to the mothership, but kill him before they can administer truth serum or torture.

On page 316 the exchange of Donovan for his son takes place at night on a cordoned off bridge on the L.A. freeway system. In the mini-series the exchange takes place during the day at Bronson Caves.

Page 317 describes Donovan's captivity after the exchange. He was subjected to the most intensive and insensitive body search he'd ever undergone, making "Cambodian prison guards seem like paragons of delicacy and tact." He doesn't know how long he was held, maybe a week or two, before the Fifth Columnist Oliver offers him a death pill as the only escape he can offer.

On page 318, after Oliver introduces himself with the resistance code phrase, Donovan asks him if the "head iguana" sent him. It seems like using the term "iguana" would be kind of an insult to use with a Visitor who was your ally! And just who is the head iguana Donovan is referring to? Martin?

In the novel the capsule that Oliver offers Donovan is green. In the mini-series it was yellowish.

Page 318 reveals that the middle-aged, black Visitor (whom we've seen throughout the two mini-series) who shoots Oliver is called Jake.
Jake the Visitor

On page 319 it is revealed during the interrogation that Donovan's full name is Michael Sean Donovan. Diana also comments, "Such a lovely Irish name. Your mother told me about your father, and how he named you." I wonder what that story is.

On page 320, after dragging the drugged Donovan into the air shaft, Martin realizes Donovan is "rocked" from the drug. He means "stoned", a slip-up in the English idiom not unlike the kind that Willie often makes!

I've noticed that the novelization has added a character who did not appear in the mini-series, Cal Robinson, a biochemist who had some medical training. Throughout the novel Cal assists Julie with the resistance's medical needs. He is the main person in charge during both Robin's aborted abortion and the delivery of her twins.

Here in the novelization, Robin is put under for her caesarian section; in the episode she remains conscious, with Julie using only a local anesthetic on her.


Memorable Dialog

not a picnic in the park.wav
she thinks like a lizard.wav
how high does the body count have to get.wav
I trust her.wav
I'm all right.wav
scars.wav
I'll keep an eye on you.wav
first time I've ever seen you stumble.wav
she's your partner.wav
a real jerk.wav
nothing to crow about.wav

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