I have a few weaknesses – Friday the 13th and Planet of the Apes are certainly among them – but my weakness for the miniseries V may remain my most inexplicable, even to myself. At any rate, I’ve been excitedly following original miniseries creator Kenneth Johnson’s efforts to get a remake or sequel off the ground, up to and including buying his novel, V: The Second Generation*.
And now V is returning to television, as a remake on ABC. That’s the good news. The bad news is that Kenneth Johnson is not involved. Rather, a dude named Scott Peters**, who created The 4400, has written a spec script that ABC picked up (after all the networks passed on his pitch. Maybe that’s some good writing. Somebody get it for me!). Peters has dropped the Nazi allegory, which is wise as that shit was so blatant and had the kind of goofy concept of substituting ‘scientists’ for Jews. I thought the generic ‘scientist’ went out of style with 1950s atomic monster movies.
Anwyay, Peters says that the new V will follow multiple stories but that the main one will center on Erica Evans, a Homeland Security type whose troubled son gets caught up with the Visitors. While I’m bummed that it’s not Mike Donovan, I’m also happy that Peters is doing the best thing you can do with a remake: take the concept and make it your own.
What will be staying? The opening with the alien ships hovering over the major cities. The Visitor’s evil plans for Earth. And possibly some other trademarks, according to Peters:
“Everybody has that imagery of their uniforms, or the visitor eating a
hamster. It’s a science fiction icon and too good to pass up.”
I’m imagining that this new version will be a miniseries or movie that serves as a pilot for a new series. And this being the 21st century, it won’t just be for TV – Jace Hall, former head o Warner Bros video game division, is executive producing and will be helping to take the V franchise into the video game world.
I’m really hoping that these Visitors are our friends, and not totally shitty.
* my weakness only extends so far. This book is so poorly written I’ve barely made it 40 pages in.
** one ‘on’ away from murder!