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Creation Date: March 1st, 2010 07:15 PM
Blue Ghost Blue Ghost is offline
Musings of a Knight of the Imperium.
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  #580 New July 9th, 2019 02:08 PM
"V" was a science fiction show that aired in the mid 80s, and was another offering in the wake of Star Wars. It's primary story was about a reptilian race disguised as humans coming to steal our water and experiment on us.

The truth is I don't have too many memories of this series because it never really grabbed me. The "chemical" the visitors want is water. Ho hum. Since the universe is mostly hydrogen, and water being an extremely abundant compound in the universe, one wonders where the writers got their concept, or if they ever gave it any thought.

Eh, whatever. I didn't hate the show, and caught an episode every so often, but it just didn't strike me as being all that interesting. I guess in the back of my head, or subconsciously, the premise came across as scientifically ignorant, far fetched, and more social psychology or sociology dressed up as aliens and guns.

I mean it was something to watch when you caught an episode, but as typical of 80s TV the cast was more pretty than talented, and even then it didn't make me want to watch the thing.

V, to me, was a middle or road grade science fiction TV show. Nothing really good, nothing too horrible either, just kind of so-so, and lacking punch in spite of all the fire fights.

I guess the other thing that struck me is that other than "stealing our water" (which should have been obvious), the whole method of how the Visitors crept into our society and schmoozed up to mankind for the sake of it, just seemed uninventive. I guess it struck me as a lot of other TV did at the time, pretty so-so, and for a science fiction series, just not all that smart.

Still, it had some action in it, and some soap opera stuff. So if you were into that, then more power to you. Unlike a lot of movies and a few other TV series, I didn't detect too many underhanded messages in it, although since the aliens are reptilian, and they're pillaging our natural resources, I suppose it's another psychopath allegory

According to the IMDB this show aired from 84 to 85, but I could have sworn that I didn't have my drivers' license yet when this aired it doesn't matter. "V" never got anything near a cult following. I think someone may have tried to remake it somewhere, but since I haven't seen any regular TV in years, I'm not certain about that.

A smarter version of the show would have been for them to just come and pound the places of interest from orbit, then land and start taking rare earths. A direct military conflict would have made for a more interesting TV show, and perhaps would have been slightly more plausible than what was created back in the 80s.

Other than that I don't have any real criticisms of it, nor any great praise. Like a lot of media from the post 60s era up to Frasier and Seinfeld, it was so=so and catered to a baseline intellect so that everybody could understand it; i.e. cater to the largest audience possible. And I guess that's why it didn't last very long.

I'm sorry if this is sounding like another anti-media rant, because it's not meant to be. I just had this recollection of this particular TV series, and felt I better jot down some thoughts about it.

In the end my general thoughts on television and feature films is that when you look back on the decades of it, you find that up through the 60s there was a lot of experimentation in terms of finding stories that people liked, and putting them onto the big or small screen with maybe a psychological or social message or two. But then in the 70s and 80s, as per my previous log entry, cost cutting measures took over, and we got no more male nor general audience oriented shows, but female shows because they bought things for the home, and cop and hospital shows reigned because they were cheap to make. And, on top of that, the theory that media helped influence societal attitudes on race and sex, just turned TV into a condescending wasteland. And then when raunch humor came into vogue in the 80s, things just plummeted.

This is why I can still watch the old Black and White TV shows, but not anything from the 70s, and a select few from the 80s (Cheers was pretty rocking). It's a good part of why today's feature films are so awful.

But, back to "V". Again, "V" falls into this category. And it's why I really liked Star Trek from the 60s, and a few other TV shows, and quite a few movies, and why I didn't get into "V". Compare apples and oranges here. The Simpsons, in the 90s, post its short focus on the ladies variety show, became a really smart and intellectually funny TV show. It's part of the reason it ran so long. "V" lasted a season and a half because the smart audience didn't like being condescended to and left it. "V", unlike Star Trek, was put in a primo prime time slot, but failed. Original Star Trek actually had a strong audience following, and eeked out three seasons. No, that's not my Trek bias here, it's the fact that shows in the 60s were actually pretty smart and various. Not so much with 70s and 80s TV, though there were some pretty funny TV shows that came out of the 80s. Regardless, it's like I say, there's a real condescension (or there was) with the powers that be in the Los Angeles entertainment industry. And that's why shows like "V", although placating to a mass audience, fizzle out in the end.

"V" was okay. But it could have been more interesting. Ditto with the original Battlestar Galactica, which had the unfortunaticity of being produced by a very church oriented producer Glenn Larson, who, although he had a lot of talented insight into pooling talent to create Television media, like Spielberg and other producers, put his signature, "I'm not wrong" sheen on the property. So, as interesting as Battlestar Galactica was, it fell back on what it believed were traditional values backed by biblical philosophy. Whereas "V" was more of a cobble of psychopaths as aliens with a conservationist message presented as an action soap opera. And that might have worked had it been a smarter show.

Those who read my web log will note that I tend not to get into the specifics of the shows that I talk about, but more or less their presentational impact and how they were psychologically conceived. That's because I'm an old school adventure in space fan, and again, as pre previous entries, liked to point out how things could have been better.

"V" doesn't quite epitomize my gripes with the Hollywood machine, but it is a fit example of how condescending to your audience yields less than sterling results. I suppose it was an okay show for what it was, but probably might have been a bit more than what it ultimately became due to its formulation.

I mean, I could pick apart its production values, how everything like a lot of TV at the time was over lit, how actors were cast for their physical appearance than their acting talent depending on their screen time, and everything else, but none of that really gets tot he core thinking behind TV shows and feature films.

Anyway, I'll rant again in another log entry at another time.

I think I'll take my scout ship and go land in the ocean for a time. I'll get my chaise lounge chair and umbrella, set them up topside, and hang out while the vessels gently bobs and rolls in the ocean waters. That, and free fuel
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