Thursday, 3 March 2011

'V' 2.8 - "Uneasy Lies The Head"

Thursday, 3 March 2011

The February "sweeps" period is over in the US, so after a few weeks where I found myself energized by V's surge of pace and reveals, "Uneasy Lies The Head" returned to dawdling, exposition-heavy normality. The amount of times the characters keep explaining or reminding each other about what's going can be ridiculous. I understand the need to help bring newcomers up to speed with events and minutiae, but each episode's "previously" recap should be enough.

This week, Erica (Elizabeth Mitchell) launched her first big offensive as leader of the global Fifth Column, by attempting to sabotage Anna's (Morena Baccarin) plans for the live-aboard humans. The people aboard Anna's mothership are having their DNA harvested to create the perfect genetic mix, so Erica decides to spoil the Visitors collected DNA by introducing a live-aboard human carrying a virus. Elsewhere, Ryan (Morris Chestnut) realized Anna has ordered his execution and tries to leave the mothership, with the help of Lisa (Laura Vandervoort) and erstwhile queen Diana (Jane Badler), who knows the whereabouts of some secret escape shuttles. Convenient, that.

There wasn't much going on in this episode, particularly compared to the last few weeks. The brakes squealed and the amount of ongoing subplots have decreased. The only thing of interest was seeing Erica's start to lose her humanity in her vengeful quest to defeat the V's, while Father Jack's (Joel Gretsch) moral guidance is being deliberately ignored. And as Erica's relationship with the former priest hit turbulence, her new aggressive approach brought her closer to Johnny Bravo-alike Hobbes (Charles Mesure). After last week's blunt foreshadowing of a Hobbes/Erica love-match, they both stripped to their underwear for an unexpectedly explicit clinch. Having spent some time highlighting action and violence, is V now trying a "sex sells" approach? We can only hope this means more Vandervoort in her bra. Also note the foreshadowing of a love-triangle, with Jack picking up on the flirtatious vibe between Erica and Hobbes in their lair and looking quietly jealous.

Good to see the show remembering it introduced young scientist Sid (Bret Harrison) weeks ago, who seems intended to be a rare source of comedy. I know the future of mankind's at stake every week, but considering the intrinsic cheesiness of V it's a shame the show doesn't explore its sillier side. I guess it's hard to be intentionally funny when every storyline's driven by reacting to evil lizards and their plans to enslave humanity, but a few quips would be appreciated. Sid may deliver some levity, but there's also a danger he'll become the incongruent wiseass of the show.

There's really not much else to add. Erica's character is marginally more compelling because she's out for blood, but Mitchell still isn't bringing the goods. Her naturally sleepy-eyed look makes it feel like Erica's been sedated half the time, and I'm personally disinterested in her romance with Hobbes and his pectoral muscles. There was some intrigued with a few human Peace Ambassadors being poisoned and dying (are rogue Fifth Columnists behind this?), but that subplot was oddly introduced and didn't form the basis of anything here. Is it planned as a way to eradicate Tyler's (Logan Huffman) peers, so he's back to being as unique as we were led to believe in season 1?

There are only two episodes left of V before, in lieu of a miracle, ABC call it a day. I'm hoping for a fast, furious and exciting finish, although confirmation the season will end on a cliffhanger is frustrating. I dearly wish the US system was somehow able to get word to showrunners that their show is doomed, so they could write a fitting conclusion. Loyal fans deserve that.


  • Does anyone see a family resemblance between Diana, Anna and Lisa? I mean, ANYONE?
  • Nobody's aware that Ryan's daughter is now immune to Anna's bliss. I don't know if this will be something that figures into the remaining episodes, or was intended to be part of season 3, but who else thinks Ryan's daughter's DNA could be used to spread that immunity to ALL the Visitors and, effectively, remove their need to feel their queen's bliss?
  • Original V star Marc Singer is set to make his debut in a few weeks, so I predict his character's behind the gruesome deaths of Peace Ambassadors.
written by Cameron Litvack & Gregg Hurwitz / directed by Jeff Woolnough / 1 March 2011 / ABC