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Episode Studies by Clayton Barr
enik1138 at popapostle dot com
V: Conquest at Any Cost "Conquest at Any Cost"
V #14 (DC Comics)
Written by Cary Bates
Pencils by Carmine Infantino
Inks by Tony DeZuniga
Cover by Jerry Bingham
March 1986

Donovan, Julie, and Bron pull into a town where all the adults have been abducted; Kyle moves the Resistance HQ to Catalina Island.

Story Summary

After defeating the fake Willie, Willie and Bron return to the landing site and hook up with Donovan and Julie. Bron takes on a new human face since the Visitors now know the one he'd been using.

Later they pull into the small town of Mayville, where they find only children, all the adults having been abducted by the Visitors weeks ago. The eldest of the youngsters, Bozz, becomes jealous of the attention the younglings heap on the new arrivals, as he is used to being the boss himself. Not realizing he's a Visitor, Bozz gets Bron alone and begins to fight him, only to get his ass kicked by the young lizard.

Meanwhile, Kyle, as acting leader of the L.A. resistance, is establishing a new HQ on Catalina Island. He questions his own qualifications and ability to lead, but Elizabeth reassures him. Willie joins the group there and reports that Donovan and Julie are continuing on the road to keep Bron hidden. During all this, Kyle's authority is challenged by a woman named Miki, who thinks Kyle is too young and chauvinistic to be leader. She claims that she could beat him in a physical match-up and challenges him to a duel. Each more-or-less gives as good as they get, and the match ends with Kyle calling a truce with the woman. But Elizabeth begins to worry that the two may harbor some chemistry with each other.

After his humiliating defeat by Bron in front of the kids, Bozz disappears into a building in town and obtains a gun.

On the L.A. mothership, Lydia is about to be executed by order of the Leader for endangering his son with her illicit missions against the resistance.



Didja Know?

The story of the town of Mayville, populated only by children since the abduction of all the adults by the Visitors, is somewhat reminiscent of the original Star Trek episode "Miri" in which all the inhabitants on a planet die after reaching puberty.

Didja Notice? 

The Visitor on the cover looks like he's wearing the brown uniform of the Visitor Youth instead of the normal red military uniform.

On page 1, the curve of the Earth is seen in the bottom left corner, indicating the motherships are rendezvousing in orbit. Yet there appear to be clouds behind the ships! Perhaps it's just meant to be a montage image though, of Earth from space and the motherships in Earth's atmosphere.
Motherships in V formation

Notice also, in the image above, that the motherships are in a "V" formation!

One of the Visitors speaking in the image above is referred to as Lordon. This may be a Visitor name rather than his Earth name.

On page 2, Diana says she returned 24 captured resistance fighters in the exchange for Bron in "The Prince and the Power". But in "Siege", Lydia's commander of the siege against the resistance said that 13 members were captured. Possibly, the discrepancy is simply that Diana's number may be deliberately exaggerated to make the resistance look more guilty when Bron was "recaptured" by them almost immediately after his return. Or it could be that some resistance members captured in earlier actions were also freed as part of the bargain.

On page 6, Donovan, Julie, and Bron pull into Mayville. We learn in the following issue ("Blood on the Wind"), that it's in the state of Nevada. This appears to be a fictional town.

On page 6, Julie mentions that they have brought a portable exo-adapter from the skyfighter with them and used it to give Prince Bron a new face since Diana is now aware of his previous human disguise.

Page 8 reveals that, in Julie and Donovan's absence, Kyle has become the acting leader of the L.A. resistance and has set up their new main HQ on Catalina Island. Catalina is located in the Pacific Ocean about 22 miles southwest of Los Angeles.

On page 10, a Mayville girl mentions that the Visitors carried weapons like none they'd ever seen, not even on Star Trek. Star Trek, of course, is a science-fiction property created by Gene Roddenberry in 1966 which has appeared in television, film, books, comics, and other formats since. As mentioned in the "Didja Know?" section above, this issue's story is somewhat reminiscent of the Star Trek episode "Miri".

Caleb Taylor reappears again after last being seen in issue #11, "Meanwhile, Out in Space...". Here we learn that he has warned Kyle about getting over-confident "time and time again". This implies that Caleb has been active, at least on the fringes of the resistance, for quite some time, more than we've actually seen since the Visitors returned for the second invasion of Earth.

On the last page of the issue, Lydia is about to be executed by order of the Leader for endangering his son with her illicit missions against the resistance. Once again, she invokes Zon as she prepares to die, "Take me, Zon--I am about to become yours to do with what you will."

Notes from V-Mail

Editor Robert Greenberger hints that a story was in the works written by Mindy Newell and drawn by cover artist Jerry Bingham. He also notes that Lydia's brother (presumably Nigel from "The Secret Underground") would turn up about two issues down the line. Unfortunately, the comic was canceled (with issue #18) before these stories saw print. 

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