V Review – It’s Only the Beginning

It’s a little late, but look at it as my way of reducing the time between the review and next episode, which won’t be until March 2010.

Title: It’s Only the Beginning

Cast

Elizabeth Mitchell as Erica Evans
Joel Gretch as Father Jack Landry
Morris Chestnut as Ryan Nichols
Morena Baccarin as Anna
Scott Wolf as Chad Decker
Christopher Shyer as Marcus
And the rest on IMDB…

Synopsis

The Visitors continue to try and win favor with the population, this time by announcing that they will share their medical knowledge. Not only are they sharing advanced medical scanning techniques but they announce they will make available to all a new supercharged vitamin treatment. Erica, Jack and fifth columnist Ryan Nichols learn that they are in fact putting a drug in regular flu shots. Meanwhile, Anna agrees with Lisa that Erica’s son Tyler is exactly the person they want for their future plans. Anna also learns that Dale, Erica’s one-time FBI partner, was killed aboard the ship and takes steps to identify the fifth columnist who may be responsible. Ryan’s wife Valerie has some important news for him.

High Points

  • Pregnant? Saw it coming, but not from that angle.
  • Self-Sacrifice. Now that ramps up the tension. Though it would have been better if it wasn’t a throwaway character.
  • Some good old-fashioned shoot-em-up, blow-em-up action.
  • I’m looking forward to seeing more of Joshua and the "in-house" fifth column.

Low Points

  • March? F-ing sucks! I wonder how many people will tune in after a four-month break?
  • The whole "Ten hours earlier" bit is a cheap trick. It’s an artificial way to create tension in post-production.

The Scores

Originality: 4 out of 6. They’ve changed so much of the original plot that I’m genuinely unsure what’s going to happen next. And that’s a very good thing.

Effects: 4/6. The Gravity Drive was cool, but the sequence seemed a little pointless.

Story: 5/6. Still hooked, but I want more.

Acting: 4/6. I liked the whole sacrifice/skinning plot line, but it could have been "heavier." I guess BSG spoiled me.

Production: 5/6. Great action sequence.

Emotional response: 3/6. The stabbed-character-cliffhanger didn’t really shake me and the outer-space revelation didn’t suprise me either.

Overall: 4/6. A good episode, but it may be too little, too late with a long break and already waning ratings.

The episode "It’s Only the Beginning" receives twenty-nine out of forty-two.

6 replies on “V Review – It’s Only the Beginning”

  1. Fez says:

    One wonders if, given their extensive and accurate medical scans, they could tell not only that she was pregnant, but the paternity and genetics of the father.

    I’m also not too fond of the giant break going on, but it seems like everyone is playing that trick. Many series are off the air until late January or February, and Fringe is coming back in January for 4 weeks then it’ll be off until April.

    Winter premiere dates (from eonline) http://bit.ly/7tZNEs

    • Lavaguy says:

      OT, but I wonder if this whole “hiatus” thing isn’t about giving the translators and dubbers time to prep the next half season for non-english markets. I’ve been noticing that the lag time for US Series in Germany has dropped markedly in the last 4 years, from up to 2 years for a new show to even hit, to being only a half season behind…

      • lunadude says:

        Interesting take, Lavaguy. I hadn’t been watching the international propagation.

        I do know the BBC series, like Dr. Who, have only been a few months/weeks from their original broadcast. It has gotten a lot better, though I don’t think it is a “translation” issue for us.

  2. zocalo says:

    I’d have gone for Lisa being the one to get pregnant too, but did suggest Valerie after the reveal about Ryan being a V in the second episode. The problem with Lisa getting pregnant is that there is far less potential for the spawn (better FX = more than just a lizard tongue, I hope!) to fall into human hands. Let’s face it, the first thing Anna should do post conception is to put Lisa in an extremely secure location with minimal contact with other Vs, let alone humans. Besides, if the V’s were interested in cross-species procreation then surely they’d just need some human sperm/ova and a test tube?

    That however leaves a much more interesting question to ponder on until March; now that the show already has a hybrid, then just what does Lisa think that Tyler is “the one” for…? Something tells me that there’s more to the V’s plans this time around than just stocking up on food and drink.

    I found the “Bliss” to be interesting too, and it also raised a few more questions to think about until March, such as what exactly is it, how does it work and can a V become immune to its effect? More importantly though (off the wall guess coming up, but spoilered just in case), can it’s effects be artificially induced by, say, an alliance of human resistance fighters and V Fifth Column about to launch a last ditch assault on the V fleet?

    Sigh. March… “F-ing sucks” indeed!

    • Scifi^2 says:

      From a psychological warfare standpoint getting a hold of the Blisser would be one hell of a powerful weapon. Imagine sending “John Mays Lives” to every single Visitor on the planet. If just the rumors of his continued existence was enough to spook the higher ups (not to mention the low-rankers) into bringing out the Blisser a direct message like that would be devastating.

      Also the incoming alien fleet looks like it’ll be the end of any resistance but I don’t recall there being a travel time mentioned anywhere so they may have a century or so to prepare. Either way it doesn’t look like the kind of the thing you’d fight off with a few well placed bombs and resistance groups.

      Tyler is going to end up being a PR boy first and foremost…after that I don’t have much else in the way of speculation

      • zocalo says:

        I have to admit that “sending a message” via Bliss is a possibilty I hadn’t thought of – I was thinking more along the lines of having them all stare at the ceiling while launching a more direct assault.

        Another nit occurred to me last night about the Bliss trance state while watching “Fast Forward”; in that show’s first episode people essentially zone out for a while and there are a huge number of fatalities as a result. Vehicles crash, people fall off things, all that kind of stuff. Given that every V we saw (Anna’s own daughter included – interesting in itself) appeared to be under the Bliss influence, shouldn’t you expect at least a few V fatalities? I suppose you could say that V’s get to choose whether to partake of the the full experience or not, but in that case why did the medic succumb, given that we know the Fifth Column clearly regard it as some kind of narcotic?

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