Season 1, Episode 9 “Heretic’s Fork”
“I can help you. I can do a story on it.” Maybe my frustration with V lies in the fact that it really does have potential. I’m no crusading Chad Decker, who by the way, breaks about every journalism ethic out there, but last night my inner dialogue was seething while the show spiraled further and further away from help. Instead of ripping through last night’s episode, I decided to actually note what changes I think could have been made to make V worth watching.
(More on Techland: V: Still Much Ado About An Alien Nothing)
1. Make Hobbes Less of a Cliche
The episode opens with Erica, Hobbes and Father Jack “question” the human sniper who is picking off members of the Fifth Column (secret alien resistance group.) The captive is bound and hanging by his arms, and of course, Hobbes is beating information out of him. I wonder if he learned this in pseudo-bad guy school? Hobbes’ bullish character exists to be the counterpoint to Father Jack, but enough with the reiteration. We get it. He’s a loose cannon. What I’d rather see from Hobbes is a street savvy crook with past wounds. So far, this character has no depth and is only around when someone needs to be killed killed, shot, or screamed at effectively. Plus the Hugh Jackman look-a-like is pretty obvious. Nice try, ABC, but what we loved about Wolverine is his tortured back story and his love for one Jean Grey. Give this character a point and I think we’d love him.
2. Put Father Jack Up Front
I’m drawn to the dilemma Father Jack is facing as the road to alien hunting gets bloodier. He’s a priest which means he’s probably not that in to killing, and yet, he’s got to protect his flock, not to mention his planet. If it were me, the unlikely duo of Jack and Hobbes would be the center force of this little anti-Visitor troop. I think with more dialogue, the relationship between the two characters could really be something. Plus, I think it would open up a chance for a tiny bit of – gasp! – humor, which could drastically improve the bone-dry personality of the show. Also, who can’t wait to see a priest blow the head off of an alien?
(More on Techland: John May Lives … Not)
3. Sack Elizabeth Mitchell
I know it sounds harsh. I loved her as Juliet in LOST, but as the pathetically inept FBI agent Erica, she makes me want to scream. I just fail to see the reason that she exists as a focal point for this show. Even her dialogue in the show is so laughable at times. It’s pretty clear that the show’s writers have no idea what she’s doing there, either. Since V‘s start, she hasn’t done one thing to advance the plot, and the relationship between her and her misguided teenage son Tyler is absurd. She continues to lie to those around her, especially her son, to “protect them” and then cries while her son walks off with aliens. What mother in-the-know would let her impressionable young son walk off to dangerous aliens? She’s not playing it cool, she’s not playing at all. Other characters to sack: Chad Decker and maybe Val – all of her freaking out has gotten annoying.
4. Concentrate on Ryan.
To me, Ryan’s plot line is the only one worth watching at the moment, with maybe the exception of Anna’s daughter Lisa, but we need to see what’s instore next week before I can say for sure. Ryan is an alien who has lived in secret inside the human population for years. He’s a good alien. They’re bad aliens. This story has a great core. I like his “change of heart” back story, and I’m hoping he continues to grow into a bad alien hunting machine. He, along with Father Jack and Hobbes would make for a great band of good guys.
(More on Techland: Dear ABC, V Won’t Lure LOST Fans By Keeping Sci-Fi At Arm’s Length)
5. Promote another good alien.
Now that Erica is history, I’d like to see another Fifth Column member become a big player. What about promoting Ryan’s doctor friend (currently on the run with Val) as another alien in hiding. Perhaps her adopted son could be Tyler? This would give the story more urgency, raise the stakes a little.
Or, if that wouldn’t work, what about Joshua, the Fifth Column member working right along side Anna? He’d make for an dynamic key player, for sure. Is he out for vengeance? Just grown fond of the humans? I’d like to know more about him, he’s interesting. I’d rather see another good alien with a lot of screen time, because it will make for a better battle when this thing comes to a head and it’ll make more sense as Lisa ultimately starts to switch sides.
That’s the list. Maybe V is beyond saving, but in my head, this is the show I want to watch. What do you think? Any more good ideas to add to the list?