The re-imagining of 1970s and ’80s science-fiction series continues tonight with the return of “V.”
“V” was the little series that wouldn’t die. It began life as a two-part miniseries in 1983, followed by the sequel “V: The Final Battle,” which was supposed to conclude the series. But that spawned a weekly series that ran from 1984 to 1985.
Now comes the new version, starting at 8 p.m. on ABC. “V” is more relevant today, with its message of aliens living among us resonating in the wake of 9-11.
“V” tells the story of the first alien encounter. The Visitors (or “V’s”) are introduced when huge spaceships appear simultaneously over 29 cities worldwide. Their leader Anna (Morena Baccarin, “Firefly”) comes with a message of peace, with the Visitors offering to share their advanced technology.
Characters in the series have different reactions to the Visitors. It’s a career-making opportunity to egotistical news anchor Chad (Scott Wolf). FBI agent Erica (Elizabeth Mitchell, “Lost”) is skeptical, especially when her teen son Tyler (Logan Huffman) gets caught up in the V fervor. Father Jack (Joel Gretsch, “The 4400”) wonders about the Visitors’ motives. Businessman Ryan (Morris Chestnutt) is just trying to live his life in changing times, but he has a secret that might make that impossible.
Of course, there’s a lot more going on behind the scenes than is immediately obvious. The message is that if something seems too good to be true, it probably is.
The producers wisely tap into the terrorism anxiety still present in this country, depicting the Visitors as having a hidden agenda. What they’re truly after becomes the underlying theme of “V.”
“V” is diverting genre entertainment for those not already watching “NCIS” in that timeslot. It’s a show whose time has come again.