Written and Directed by Kenneth Johnson
A race of aliens arrive on Earth in a fleet of 50 huge, saucer-shaped motherships, which hover over major cities across the world. They reveal themselves on the roof of the United Nations building in New York City, appearing human but requiring special glasses to protect their eyes and having a distinctive resonance to their voices. Referred to as the Visitors, they reach out in friendship, ostensibly seeking the help of humans to obtain chemicals and minerals needed to aid their ailing world. In return, the Visitors promise to share their advanced technology with humanity. The governments of Earth accept the arrangement, and the Visitors, commanded by their leader John and his deputy Diana, begin to gain considerable influence with human authorities.
Strange events begin to occur and scientists become objects of increasing media hostility. They experience government restrictions on their activities and movements. Others, particularly those keen on examining the Visitors more closely, begin to disappear or are discredited. Noted scientists confess to subversive activities; some of them exhibit other unusual behaviors, such as suddenly demonstrating an opposite hand preference to the one they were known to have.
Television journalist cameraman Michael Donovan covertly boards one of the Visitors' motherships and discovers that beneath their human-like facade (they wear a thin, synthetic skin and human-like contact lenses in public), the aliens are actually carnivorous reptilian humanoids preferring to eat live food such as rodents and birds. Donovan records some of his findings on videotape and escapes from the mothership with the evidence, but just as the exposé is about to air on television, the broadcast is interrupted by the Visitors who have taken control of the media. Their announcement makes Donovan a fugitive, pursued by both the police and the Visitors.
Scientists around the world continue to be persecuted, both to discredit them (as the part of the human population most likely to discover the Visitors' secrets) and to distract the rest of the population with a scapegoat to whom they could attribute their fears. Key human individuals are subjected to Diana's special mind control process called "conversion", which turned them into the Visitors' pawns, leaving only subtle behavioral clues to this manipulation. Others become subjects of Diana's horrifying biological experiments.
Some humans (including Mike Donovan's mother, Eleanor Dupres) willingly collaborate with the Visitors, seduced by their power. Daniel Bernstein, a grandson of a Jewish Holocaust survivor, joins the Visitor Youth and reveals the location of a scientist family to the alien cause. One teenager, Robin Maxwell, the daughter of a well-known scientist who went into hiding, has intercourse with a male Visitor named Brian, who impregnates her as one of Diana's "medical experiments".
A resistance movement is formed, determined to expose and oppose the Visitors. The Los Angeles cell leader is Julie Parrish. Donovan later joins the group and, again sneaking aboard a mothership, he learns from a Visitor named Martin that the story about the Visitors needing waste chemicals is a cover for a darker mission. The true purpose of the Visitors' arrival on Earth was to conquer and subdue the planet, steal all of the Earth's water, and harvest the human race as food, leaving only a few as slaves and cannon fodder for the Visitors' wars with other alien races. Martin is one of many dissidents among the Visitors (later known as the Fifth Column) who oppose their leader's plans and would rather co-exist peacefully with the humans. Martin befriends Donovan and promises to aid the Resistance, and gives Donovan access to one of their sky-fighter ships, which he quickly learns how to pilot. He escapes from the mothership along with Robin and another prisoner named Sancho, who'd aided Robin's family in their flight out of occupied Los Angeles.
The Resistance strike their first blows against the Visitors, procuring laboratory equipment and modern military weapons from National Guard armories to carry on the fight. The symbol of the resistance is a blood-red letter V (for victory), spray-painted over posters promoting Visitor friendship among humans. The symbol was inspired by Daniel Bernstein's grandfather Abraham, a Holocaust survivor.
The mini-series ends with the Visitors now virtually controlling the Earth, and Julie and Elias sending a transmission into space to ask other alien races for help in defeating the Visitors.
V is an American science fiction television series that ran for two seasons on ABC, from November 3, 2009 to March 15, 2011. A remake of the 1983 miniseries created by Kenneth Johnson, the new series chronicles the arrival on Earth of a technologically advanced alien species which ostensibly comes in peace, but actually has sinister motives.
Giant spaceships appear over 29 major cities throughout the world, and Anna (Morena Baccarin), the beautiful and charismatic leader of the extraterrestrial "Visitors", declares that they come in peace. The Visitors claim to only need a small amount of Earth's resources, in exchange for which they will share their advanced technological and medical knowledge. As a small number of humans begin to doubt the sincerity of the seemingly benevolent Visitors, FBI counter-terrorism agent Erica Evans (Elizabeth Mitchell) discovers that the aliens are actually reptilian humanoids wearing pseudo-human skin, have spent decades infiltrating human governments, businesses, and religious institutions, and are now in the final stages of their plan to take over the Earth. Erica joins the resistance movement, which includes Ryan (Morris Chestnut), a Visitor sleeper agent who over time developed human emotions and now wants to save humanity. Their rebellion is further challenged as the Visitors have won favor among the people of Earth by curing a variety of diseases, and have recruited Earth's youth—including Erica's son Tyler (Logan Huffman)—to serve them unknowingly as spies.
Elizabeth Mitchell as Erica Evans—an FBI counter-terrorism agent who becomes a member of and eventually the leader of the global Fifth Column.
Morris Chestnut as Ryan Nichols—a Visitor posing as human and a Fifth Columnist trying to undermine the insidious plansofthe Visitors. He is later forced to betray the Fifth Column due to Anna holding his baby daughter hostage. He is strangled to death by his daughter while trying to remove her from the Visitor mothership in the season 2 finale.
Joel Gretsch as Father Jack Landry—a Catholic priest and former U.S. Army chaplain whose unease with the Visitors is soon validated by his alliance with Erica over their discovery of the Visitors' secret. Over time, he finds his views of the Visitors conflict with the church hierarchy. He is eventually laicized after speaking out against the Visitors one time too many, following numerous warnings from the Visitor-controlled Vatican.
Logan Huffman as Tyler Evans—Erica's teenage son who becomes a V "peace ambassador" and Lisa's love-interest. He becomes closer to Anna over time, and at odds with his own mother. The Visitors stripped him of half his DNA when he was in Erica's womb, which led to his father believing that Erica had an affair. He is killed by Lisa's "twin" sister after mating with her in the season 2 finale.
Lourdes Benedicto as Valerie Stevens (Season 1)—Ryan's fiancée who was originally unaware of his alien nature. Her discovery of his secret leads to her being murdered by Anna after giving birth to Ryan's baby.
Laura Vandervoort as Lisa—a Visitor and Tyler's love-interest who is revealed to be Anna's daughter and next-in-line to be the Visitors' queen. She displays growing human emotion throughout the first season and joins the Fifth Column in the season finale. In the second season finale, she is imprisoned by Anna, and replaced by her sister, who is identical in appearance (also played by Laura Vandervoort).
Charles Mesure as Kyle Hobbes (recurring Season 1, starring Season 2)—a former British SAS soldier and current mercenary, on top of the wanted lists of many law enforcement organizations, who is recruited by the Fifth Column. It is revealed the Visitors have someone close to him and are blackmailing him.
Morena Baccarin as Anna—the cold, manipulative Visitor Queen and High Commander. She maintains loyalty and control over her subjects by use of a telepathic pacification process known as "Bliss".
Scott Wolf as Chad Decker—a television news anchor who becomes the Visitors' spokesperson. He is caught between his journalistic ethics and his ambition when his exclusive access to Anna comes with a price. He turns Fifth Column when he learns the sinister truth about the Visitors, though this remains hidden from Anna until the season 2 finale.
Christopher Shyer as Marcus—Anna's second-in-command in charge of operations. He is shot in the second season during the Concordia announcements, but has since recovered.
Mark Hildreth as Joshua—The physician in charge of the medical crew on board the Visitors' New York mothership. In season 1, he appears loyal to Anna but is in fact a Fifth Columnist undermining the Visitors' operations from within. After being killed and revived, he awakens in season 2 with a wiped memory and renewed loyalty to Anna. In the end of season 2, he remembers being in Fifth Column after seeing Lisa snoop around on the mothership and rejoins the network against Anna.
David Richmond-Peck as Georgie Sutton (Season 1)—One of the original members of the human resistance, who wanted revenge against the Visitors for causing his family's deaths after he discovered the V's agenda. In an attempt to save Ryan, he is captued by the Visitors. He is tortured for information and later chooses to die rather than reveal Fifth Column members.
Roark Critchlow as Paul Kendrick—Erica's superior in the FBI counter-terrorism unit. He has long suspected that Erica might be a member of the Fifth Column and reveals himself to be part of another underground anti-V organization known as Project Aries.
Alan Tudyk as Dale Maddox (Season 1)—Erica's first partner in the season. Erica discovers he is a Visitor, and wounds him. He ends up on Anna's ship where he is killed by Joshua, the V physician, who is also a spy for the Fifth Column.
Rekha Sharma as Agent Sarita Malik—An FBI agent assigned to work with Erica. Like Erica's previous partner, she is also revealed to be a V mole. After her true identity is discovered, she is tortured and killed by the Resistance.
Scott Hylands as Father Travis—An elder priest at the same church where Father Jack works. He appears to side with the Visitors in several conversations with Father Jack.
Lexa Doig as Dr. Leah Pearlman (Season 1)—A V doctor posing as Valerie's human physician. She is also Fifth Column.
Nicholas Lea as Joe Evans—Erica's ex-husband, who left her after blood tests revealed that their son, Tyler, could not possibly be his. He tries to reconnect with his wife and son after learning the truth about Tyler's altered DNA. In season 2, he is caught in a crossfire between FBI agents and the Fifth Column, and is shot and killed.
Jane Badler as Diana (Season 2)—Anna's mother, who is being held prisoner on the Visitor mothership in a secret prison cell made to resemble their homeworld. She was once Queen until she proposed that the Visitors live in peace with humans. Anna finally overthrew her and imprisoned her for fifteen years. She was eventually rescued in the season 2 finale but rather than escape, she chose to confront her subjects and was killed by Anna as a result.
Bret Harrison as Sidney Miller (Season 2)—an evolutionary biologist, whom Erica tracks down in order to explain the Red Sky. Since then, he has continued to work with the Fifth Column.
Oded Fehr as Eli Cohn (Season 2)—an ex-Mossad agent and the leader of a radical Fifth Column cell, with whom Erica shockingly has a mysterious past. He is killed in a staged hostage crisis after turning over his global contacts as well as leadership of his cell to Erica. Rosenbaum has stated that, "The two of them have something in common that she [Erica] never would have guessed."
Jay Karnes as Chris Bolling (Season 2)—Erica's newly-assigned FBI partner who trained with her at Quantico. He begins to suspect that Erica may have divided loyalties when it comes to her dedication to bringing down the Fifth Column. In the season 2 finale, he is revealed to be a member of a secret global anti-V cabal known as Project Aries.
Martin Cummins as Thomas (Season 2)—the chief engineer of Anna's Concordia project, who is temporarily promoted to second-in-command following the shooting of Marcus.
Ona Grauer as Kerry Eltoff (Season 2)—Chad's co-anchor on Prime Focus, added by their producer to provide opposing viewpoint to Chad's Visitor-centric reporting. He tricks her into claiming that sources showed a city-wide blackout was the result of the unstable Visitor Concordia generator, causing her to be fired for false reporting. However, Anna had revealed to Chad that Kerry's viewpoints were "dangerous" to Visitor/human relations and would not be tolerated. Therefore, in getting her fired, Chad not only removed her as a threat to his cover but also protected her from Anna's wrath.
Marc Singer as Lars Tremont (Season 2)—a member of a top-secret organization of high-ranking military and government leaders (called Project Aries) who know more about the Visitors than most and have been secretly preparing for a Visitor attack. Singer also played a leading role in the original 80's series.
On May 13, 2011, ABC announced that V was canceled. Following ABC's cancellation of V, the fan letter-writing campaign "Project Alice" began writing to Warner Bros. to renew the series on a different network. The campaign initially sought to get the show renewed on TNT, but more recent efforts have also concentrated on the CW Network as well. Both networks are owned by Warner Bros. Television's parent company, Time Warner.
Project Alice has been officially endorsed by executive producers Scott Rosenbaum and Steve Pearlman, writer Gregg Hurwitz; and actors Mark Hildreth, Morena Baccarin, Jane Badler, Laura Vandervoort and Scott Wolf, each of whom have made videos expressing their support and admiration of their fans' campaign.