V (the mini-series, part
2, hour 2)
48:16-1:31:25 on Side 2 of the DVD
Written and Directed by Kenneth Johnson
The L.A. resistance makes a daring attack against
a Visitor armory.
(This episode begins with Julie's pep talk to the
resistance members before their hit on the Visitor armory and ends with
them setting up the broadcast for help into outer space.)
I slightly modified chapter title 13 on the DVD, "Plan of
Resistance" as the
title for this hour.
This episode is where the resistance really begins.
The Visitor who jumps aboard the transport with Donovan at the
last minute is the same one who tried to talk to him in "Betrayal
and Reward" and realized Donovan was not one of them.
Although Donovan gets away with it this time, the observant
alien catches him out later in the episode. (In the
novelization, Donovan gets aboard the shuttle the same way, but
he never encounters his Visitor "pal").
|At 53:11 on the DVD, there is
Visitor writing repeated along the length of the
catwalks above the hanger deck.
The on-set panning shot of the hanger deck from 53:12-53:24
makes it appear that the production had 5 full-size shuttles to
use during filming.
At 53:15 on the DVD, their are two Visitors standing on top of a
shuttlecraft. What are they doing there? One of them is sort of
looking down and around like he might inspecting it for damage,
but the second one looks like he's kind of kicking back while he
reads something on a clipboard.
At 54:22 on the DVD, the two cops who have stopped the kids who
vandalized the Visitor posters are Bob and Randy again, the same
two cops whom we have seen repeatedly at the checkpoint on the road
out of town.
|At 55:26 on the DVD, there is
Visitor writing on the water storage tanks.
At 56:52 on the DVD, as the resistance members crash their
trucks through the gates of the armory, Julie sees Visitor
soldiers on the rooftop and warns, "Watch out for the snakes on
the roof!" It goes by so quickly I never noticed it before, but
she is obviously using "snakes" as a derogatory term for the
reptilian Visitors. (In the novelization she merely says "Look
out for the two on the roof!")
During the battle at the armory, the resistance members cleverly
use mirrors to reflect bright sunlight into the faces of the
When Donovan realizes that the Visitors came to Earth to steal
the water, Martin tells him that water is the rarest, most
valuable commodity and, unlike most planets, Earth is blessed
with an abundance of it. He also says that besides needing
it for sustenance, water is needed by the Visitors to power
their fusion generators and the Leader's weapons. Do they use
what is called deuterium or heavy water (H3O) in a
cold fusion process? In the real world, there has been some
speculation and experimentation of mastering cold fusion with
Martin warns Donovan that still more motherships are on the way
to Earth to take away water, a plan that will take a generation
to complete, while Donovan comments that Earth would become a
desert and humanity will die. This sounds like a natural lead-in
to the events of Kenneth Johnson's own sequel to
V as a novel,
At 1:01:21 on the DVD, Daniel is whistling the tune of the
Star Wars theme.
The pods that are holding the humans in cryo-storage aboard the
motherships appear to be part machine and part organic. There
are tubes that look like giant coils of intestine connected to
The man that Donovan sees in the pod at 1:02:34 on the DVD,
looks like Dr. Quinton, Robert Maxwell's associate who
disappeared in "Arrival". (In the
audio commentary, Kenneth Johnson confirms it is the head-cast
of that actor.)
Martin explains that some of the humans in storage will be used
as food and some as troops against the Leader's enemy.
Sancho mentions that his grandfather fought with Zapata.
Emiliano Zapata (1879-1919) is a national hero in Mexico and an instigator of
the Mexican Revolution of 1910 alongside Pancho Villa, Porfirio
Diaz, and Pascual Orozco.
At one point, Donovan points at the bruised and beaten Sancho and asks
Martin if that looks like "a Sunday afternoon in
How likely would Martin be to understand a reference to the
Just before Donovan and the rest escape the mothership in the
fighter craft, Martin tells him the craft will almost fly
itself. The line was probably written by Johnson to explain how
first-time pilot Donovan (though an experienced pilot of Earth
aircraft) could outfly the Visitors in their own fighters in the
chase scene to follow.
When Donovan flies the stolen Visitor fighter upside-down at
1:08:48 on the DVD, you can tell it's just the camera turned
upside-down inside the craft because Robin's hair stays in place!
When Sancho fires the fighter's rear lasers at the pursuing
fighters at 1:09:20 (and elsewhere) on the DVD, an authentic
touch is added by the calloused thumb we see pressing the
trigger. That's a working man's hand!
There seems to be a running gag through the series of people
calling Sancho by Spanish names other than Sancho! At the
roadblock/checkpoint in "Visitors, Victims, and
Victory", the cop calls him Pedro and in this episode
Donovan calls him Cisco!
As the Visitor attack on the resistance's mountain camp begins,
Polly and Katie Maxwell are playing at a table set up outside.
We see they have the same Mousetrap game and E.T. stuffed figure
we saw them playing with in "Visitors, Victims, and
Victory". To the right there appears to be a toy school desk
(I remember it from when I was a kid) by Playskool or
Fisher-Price. And to the left is one of the giant 23.5" tall
Shogun Warriors by Mattel; I think this one is
The little girl playing Katie Maxwell in the scene above looks
genuinely startled by the noise of the blast that happens behind
her. Maybe Johnson didn't warn her what was going to happen in
order to get a real reaction!
When Sancho says he needs a little luck to shoot down the final
pursuit fighter, Donovan suddenly pulls out his son's Dodgers
cap and puts it on. His idea of a good luck charm, I guess!
When Donovan evades his pursuer by flying through a
highway tunnel it looks like the producers just shot the
same tunnel opening from a slightly different angle for
both his entrance and exit!
|And when we see Sancho's view from
the rear gun port, it looks like they've exited from a
different, shorter tunnel! Notice you can just see the
opening of the other end of the tunnel (near Sancho's head)
and it appears to be a shorter distance than the tunnel
we saw them enter.
A nice bit of detail occurs at 1:13:39 on the DVD as a laser
bolt from the Visitor fighter strikes the tank of the water
tower; a blast of water shoots up from the top of the tank.
When I originally posted this study, I had commented that at 1:17:08 on the DVD, Donovan's escape craft has been so badly
damaged in the fight there is twisted metal sticking out of the rear. But PopApostle reader Greg P. pointed out that the metal sticking out is actually the rear laser gun of the fighter, (also visible in the screenshot posted two comments above this one). Though the rear gun is not seen in other shots of Visitor fighter craft, it does appear to be the case here. I suspect it was added just for this shot since the rear gun plays an important role in the scene.
|At 1:17:21 on the DVD, we see
some Visitor writing on the panel next to Diana.
Do our heroes actions in escaping from
the mothership remind you a bit of the escape from the Death
Star in Star Wars: A New Hope? In both cases our
heroes, after marching into the
detention area, rescue a prisoner (actually
V, Sancho and Robin), they get separated and meet up in the
docking bay, sneak aboard a ship to flee (although with Martin
staying behind), and their ship is chased by enemy fighters
which they finally manage to destroy just in time to arrive at
resistance/rebel headquarters and save it from a
The scene of Julie pulling out her pistol and firing at the
fighter craft overhead is similar to the scene in the first
episode ("Arrival") of the rebel leader in El Salvador. In both cases, they
are bent over a fallen comrade and, as an enemy aircraft
approaches, pull out their pistol and fire at it.
The Visitor uniform that Marc Singer wears appears to be made of
a different material than most of the others. There is no
evidence of the "square snowflake" pattern seen at certain
angles and lighting as mentioned in the episode study of
Blaming himself for betraying the camp's location to the
Visitors after his wife dies in front of him, Robert Maxwell
sees and picks up a gun and appears to be contemplating suicide
until he hears his daughters calling for him and he is snapped
out of it.
Donovan's mother, Eleanor, makes a comment that she is a
survivor and that's how she made it through his father's
We also see his current stepfather drinking quite a bit as the
episodes go on. I would suspect Eleanor was the major factor for
the drinking in both cases! (In fact, Donovan makes a similar
comment to her in the novelization.) The novel
Death Tide reveals that
Donovan's father died a few years ago, after which Eleanor
married rich industrialist Arthur Dupres.
When the resistance sends its message out into space hoping to
contact the enemy of the Visitor leader, what's to prevent the
Visitors themselves from intercepting it, tracking it, and
shutting the broadcast down?
From the Audio Commentary by Kenneth Johnson
The music during the closing credits of this
episode are a modification and combination of Beethoven's 5th
and 7th Symphonies.
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 181-213 cover the events of "Plan for Resistance"
Page 185 reveals that Harmony is a pacifist due to her father
having died in the Korean War and her brother in Vietnam.
On page 188 Martin says that Visitor life-spans approximate
On page 191 Martin says to Donovan, "I'm not going to say that
I'm a vegetarian--that's not our way." Is that meant to imply
that the Visitors can't survive on vegetables alone? In later
episodes, Willie is said to be a vegetarian, though whether he
always was or became one to appease the humans he now lives with
is not stated.
Also on page 191, Martin says that when the expedition was first
mounted the crew was told the inhabitants of Earth were like
cattle and not intelligent. When they arrived and saw otherwise
those who protested were disposed of.
In the mini-series itself, when Martin escorts Donovan through
the dark corridors of the detention area to see Tony's body,
Donovan is not wearing the sunglasses to conceal his face.
During the same scene in the novel, he is. Either way poses
risks to Donovan, I suppose. Going without the sunglasses risks
a passing Visitor recognizing him. Wearing them in the dark
corridors of the ship begs the question why wear them where they
are not needed?
Page 192 describes the detention area in which Tony's body is
being stored as smelling like blood and excrement. And in the
mini-series Tony's body goes unseen; we see only Donovan's
reaction to it to sell that something horrible was done to him.
Here on page 192 of the novel, his body is described as having
been cut open with surgical skill but not sewn back up; the body
is resting inches deep in blood.
Pages 193-194 expand on the scene after Donovan and Martin find
the beaten and bruised Sancho. Martin leaves briefly and returns
with some medical supplies to patch the man up.
On page 195, after Martin explains the controls and functioning
of the shuttle, Donovan says, "You ought to sell these babies in
New England. Make a fortune." It seems like kind of an odd thing
to say...why specifically New England? Am I missing some in-joke
or pop reference?
On page 199, Randy (the good cop) secretly makes a "V" sign behind
his back for Ruby's benefit as she sneaks away after having
blown up the Visitor shuttle parked on the street.
Oddly, the novel entirely omits the scene of Julie and Elias
setting up the broadcast of their space message to the Leader's
foes. Perhaps Crispin chose not to include it because there is
no pay-off as the rest of the novel covers
V: The Final Battle,
which the resistance drives off the Visitors without any
extraterrestrial help (other than the Visitors' own Fifth
Notes from the novel V: East
by Howard Weinstein and A.C. Crispin
The events of V: East Coast
Crisis take place concurrently with the two mini-series
V: The Final Battle and
details the goings-on in the area around New York City.
(The page numbers come from the 1st printing,
paperback edition, published September 1984)
Pages 204-239 take place concurrently with the events of "Plan
On page 221, Jennifer reveals that humans are being taken by the
Visitors for three reasons: as food, as breeding stock for more
food, and to act as conscripted soldiers in an
interplanetary war against a power that had defeated several of
their worlds early in their Great Leader's military career, the
only defeat their civilization has ever suffered. She also says
that their current military government overthrew the previous
civilian republic government which she says was much like that
of the United States. On page 222 she goes on to say that many
of her people still do not know the true purpose of the Visitor
mission to Earth; they were misled or lied to. Jennifer herself
is part of a group called the Alliance, a holdover from the old
government. Presumably the Alliance is part of what we will come
to known as the Fifth Column.
Page 226 reveals that the Pope has been converted by the