Episode Review: V – Hearts And Minds (Season 1, Episode 10)

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I think we are quick coming up on the end of the season and based on what I am picking up on the other Geek sites longevity isn’t looking very likely for this show which kinda conflicts me. On the one hand the show sucks and I hate reviewing it. On the second hand, the premise is golden and if only they had worked up a real vision for what they wanted to accomplish… Meh. No crying over spilt milk as the saying goes. Comcast says, “A deadly V tracker team is dispatched to find Erica, Ryan, Father Jack and Hobbes; Anna issues an invitation to Tyler for the Live Aboard Program; Chad asks Father Jack about the Fifth Column.”

Follow along as I outline what went down in this week’s exciting episode, right after the jump.

Play by Play

In the Intro we see as Hobbes, Jack and Ryan shoot down a “V” shuttle, but it is filled with humans and there are no survivors. On the Mamma ship, Anna and her assistant dude pat themselves on the back about how smart they are and then, we jump back to 12 hours earlier to see how our team got this far, with Joshua (the top dog “V” doctor that loves humans) warning Ryan that a shuttle full of “V” trackers is coming down. Then we get to see Father Jack and Anna flirting adorably with each other by punching the bag (not an euphemism). Ryan calls the gang together and tells them about the “V” only shuttle with the trackers and convinces them into putting together a secret op to blow it up. They all agree to go for it.

Party of Five visits Jack and implores him to introduce him to the Fifth Column. He says he could be a big asset to the Fifth Column. He says that he hangs out with Anna, he is behind the scenes, he gets to ride on the “V” only shuttles. Jack, being the poorly represented man of the cloth that he is, warns Chad not to ride on the “V” only shuttles that day. Chad immediately runs to Anna and spills the beans on the danger to “V” only shuttles.

Anna and her assistant realize that there are still Fifth Columnists on board and decide to tighten security and send humans instead of V Trackers in the shuttle.

And then we are up to date with the beginning of the show as our intrepid group of freedom fighters rush out to blow up the shuttle. And then Father Jack gets all pissy that humans got killed instead of “V”s and storms off since it is his turn to quit the band this week.

Once the destroyed shuttle makes the news (which, of course, is immediately)Anna gives a speech about how hurt she is and sad that humans died in the shuttle attack, and how betrayed she feels. She finishes her broadcast and pats herself on the back to her assistant. Funny, I am pretty sure that Love isn’t the only feeling humans feel. Unless smugness isn’t human. I wonder if the (as Betababe calls them) Hum-V’s be afflicted with the human emotion of smugness, too.

Whiney cry baby little girlie boy, Teenage Wasteland, runs up to the Mother-ship to see if Lisa is okay, Anna reassures him and tells him to pack so he can be with his sweet heart. Meanwhile, hottie blondie “V” Lisa hears some human Live Aboard Participants crying. She asks what is wrong and the crying human woman explains about the nightmares she is having, while Anna spies on them in HD mid-air projection TV.

Jack has gone missing after storming out on the gang. The remaining members of the team make a half-hearted show of worrying about where he is and then move on. Erica briefly has evidence that the bodies on the shuttle were already dead, but the evidence gets deleted – she warns Ryan and tells him that they need to wipe some toll booth security cameras before they get revealed as the terrorists.

Lisa has a dream about the experiments they are performing on the humans on the mother ship and then she dumps little Baba O’Reilly for his own good.

Party of Five tracks Jack down where he is hiding out in the main chapel, on the front pew at his church and warns him that he will need to report on the Shuttle attack. Chad tells him that if he, Jack, is Fifth Column things are going to get very hot very soon. Jack says luckily he isn’t Fifth Column, which isn’t a violation of his vows or the commandments, see, because he quit the team just fifteen minutes ago. Chad nods his head knowingly and heads back to the Mother-ship for some of that good loving.

Hobbes and Ryan covertly sneak into a high security facility to erase the incriminating video, but surprisingly Erica’s boss, Official-Stuffy-Looking-Guy, was sly enough to retrieve the video footage earlier. Based on what they see in the video footage they have pulled in a suspect. Erica gets asked to come in and help with the interrogation and is stiffly surprised to find Father Jack sitting at the suspect table. Erica unconvincingly comes up with a ruse that will give her a few moments alone with Jack by asking her boss, Official-Stuffy-Looking-Guy, to go grab some stuff for her. Once they are alone she tells Jack that they didn't kill the people and he suddenly gets his spirit back and he is all swaggery and indignant with the interrogation and demands to be let go, which of course the FBI does, because as we all know, they can’t hold anyone against their will even in a possible terrorist situation.

And in the Extro – Anna slugs sweet little Lisa hottie blondie “V” with a sucker punch so hard it floors her and tells her that her next mission is to pretend to be attacked by Fifth Columnists, and Erica gets a big fat promotion at work when she is assigned to head up the new task force to hunt down the Fifth Column.

Observations

As you can probably guess, I have long ago given up trying to think through the storyline in this show – I have no idea where they are going with and frankly I don't really care. You would think that with a premise as promising as this that there would be a ton of low hanging fruit for them to grab storywise – but they really don’t seem to know where they want to take the show. And I don’t consider throw away lines used to give viewers brief but unconvinving moments of suspense as proof that they have done any real culture building here with regard to the “V”.

My admittedly overly cynical suspicion here is that they have a one or two sentence explanation of what the “V” motivation is in coming to earth in an early show bible from the previous show runner, that now has been tweaked slightly for the new show runner, but still with little to no critical thought. They probably have some early “V” character designs so there is a possibly general understanding of what they look like under the human faces (unless they do a reveal in the last episode of the season which has already been shot). I doubt that they have any long character arcs plotted out – the issue with Ryan and his girlfriend from last week’s episode kinda makes me think that. She was done with him and gone, little to no fuss. I mean that doesn't preclude them from revisiting it later, but the way everything went down it felt more like an way to cut the cast and tighten up the pacing and get a sprawling storyline with nowhere to go under control.

Anyways, I guess it won’t matter much.

I hate when a great premise is executed poorly by people that should know better.

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