The trouble with V…

Just watched the latest episode of season 2 of V, episode 6 ‘Siege’, and once again I find myself wanting to love this show more than I actually do. I was not a huge fan of the original, only seeing a few episodes so it is not that my expectations were too high in that way. I think it is that all the ingredients are there and so nearly come together, but like some of my cooking, are often a disappointment.

After  years of great guest performances, Elizabeth Mitchell fully deserved the starring role as FBI agent Erica Evans, and I am amazed that lovely sweet Inara from Firefly (Morena Baccarin) can be so scary as villain Anna. Both ladies do there best and are the main draws of the show. The supporting cast is ok, although a huge problem for me is Erica’s son Tyler. Can anyone name ANY redeeming feature of this most irritating of characters on tv right now! He is so easily taken in by Anna’s line and such a total prat I keen hoping they wil kill him off. Unlike Anna’s daughter Lisa, he hasn’t shown any other side apart from his dumbass one and unfortunately Erica’s devotion and constant fussing after him weakens her character a bit for me.

In this week’s show, her ex-husband was killed off and the reins of the Fifth Column resistance force were kind of handed over to her. Just imagine how much more effective she would have been on the trail of vengeance if it had been her beloved Tyler that was killed. OK so network tv isn’t keen on killing kids, but he is 18 now – we would have struggles through our tears!!

A bigger problem in many ways are the fairly lame assignments that the resistance teams go on each week, without really making any progress in fighting against the Vs. The plotting is frankly sloppy. I could not believe they had Hobbes turn on his team by them using the old trick ‘we have your girlfriend, help us or she dies,’ especially as, hey, they are using the EXACT same blackmail on Ryan by holding his baby. Can they really not come up with better plots?

More daftness – can a priest really be sacked just like that?? I seem to remember Audrey Hepburn having to a lot more to stop being a nun in The Nun’s Story!  Please, please don’t have ex-Fr Jack be after Erica now!

I almost laughed out loud at Erica’s ex, Joe (who will always be creepy Agent Krycek from The X Files for me)  who gave the most tv/movie clichéd parent to kid speech as he headed off to try and rescue Eric…erm she’s armed, trained, an agent surrounded by cops. Why did he need to go again? Oh that’s right, as a plot device, of course! “I need to go, you stay here, everything will be fine.” Or something. If he’s added ‘it’s showtime’ or ‘try and get some rest’ we really would have been in cliché heaven.

On the plus side I liked the actor who played previous leader Eli Cohn (who I remember from The Mummy.) He often plays shifty but with hidden integrity, as he did here. Elizabeth Mitchell had a pretty kickass episode as she had to go through quite a bit of emotional and physical pain.

So if there are some many things that annoy me, why am I bothering to watch, let along write? Well because I want to like it! The basic premise is excellent. What WOULD we do if aliens arrived who seemed so benevolent? How do you fight against an enemy everyone else falls for? I am also very happy to see a show with two women as the leads. We might be in 2011 but that is still sadly much less common than it should be. Mitchell and Baccarin are gorgeous and talented actresses who have plenty to get their teeth stuck into – literally for V rodent eater Anna!

It just seems like the show has barely moved on since the first few episodes. While a few characters have come and gone, Erica was still an agent leading a double life, Ryan, Fr Jack, Anna, Tyler all similar. Maybe Chad and Lisa had a little realisation, but that was quite a while ago now. Where is the development of character or plot?

However, maybe this episode will signal a bit of a change for the show. Now Tyler has gone to live on the V ship and her ex is dead, Erica needs to step up to be a leader of the Fifth Column. Father Jack is a civilian once again, how will that affect the team and him? Ryan betrayed his friends. Is he dead in the explosion? Can we just get rid of that squalling baby now? Please! Is the smarmy Marcus dead? Will Anna just get a move on and wipe out the humans?

I live in hope.

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