Doctor Omega

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I have just started watching the whole original saga again and had forgotten just how well made that original mini-series is

The Final Battle doesn't quite live up to the first mini-series and I know that there is going to be a quality downswing when I get to the weekly series. I remember being disappointed that they never bothered to treat the Lizard voices in the regular series.
 

Hux

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Yep, this was it.

Looks utterly ridiculous now but terrified me at the time.

 

Doctor Omega

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Yes, it definitely made an impact at the time! I think it's maybe the mother's horrified reaction that sold it when broadcast, but I didn't remember the prosthetics looking so dodgy! Shows how the memory cheats! :emoji_alien:
 

Hux

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The lizard baby is effective but then the green goblin comes out.

As I recall, the woman was openly in a relationship with one of the aliens so her baby having those alien traits being so horrifying to her is what gave it impact. I dunno, it's like a woman having a black husband and freaking out when the baby comes out brown.
 

chainsaw_metal1

Member: Rank 8
I just love that the sci-fi is dumbed down for general audiences, and there's no questioning how human and alien DNA would meld. But yeah, I remember this freaking me out as a kid. Now, um, not so much.
 

Doctor Omega

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Then there were the books I never read......

Nothing against them at the time, but I just never got around to reading them.



Did anyone read any of the spin off novels?

Any good?
 

chainsaw_metal1

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I never did read any. I think a buddy of mine read one or two and said they were okay. I hadn't really delved into spin-off novels at that point outside of Star Trek and various comic books.

And I don't care if she's a deadly lizard woman, Diana always excited me. Even before I understood what I was supposed to like about women.
 

johnnybear

Member: Rank 6
The first two parter was excellent and the music for the next three parter was very catchy! The series was not that good as I remember with the makeup costs having been greatly reduced and the stories being more or less similar to a soap opera! The last episode left us with a cliffhanger that has never been resolved either! Charles and Diana, I ask you...
JB
 

Alex Vojacek

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The first miniseries and Final Battle was a masterpiece for it's time. The TV series was not. Even for that big of a budget, the TV series felt so much "cheap" compared to the Miniseries and Final Battle, besides the story ends so well in Final Battle that the return in the TV series felt a lot forced.

Well, just so you know, the series was CANCELLED just after the first 2 episodes of Season 2 were filmed... they were never aired, but they killed off July right at the start of season 2 !. Since it was never aired, this never happened.
 

Alex Vojacek

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They were never able to "air" the first 2 episodes of Season 2, but as I've said.. Juli dies right at the begining. If anyone has the actual material for those 2 episodes they are more than welcome to post them here !
 

Gavin

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I missed the original miniseries (still haven't seen it all but I have read the novelisation) and only saw parts of The Final Battle but I was fully on board for the TV series

My favorite character was Willie, played by Robert Englund (go figure).
I know! When I first realised that Willie was also Freddie I was stunned. The two characters are so different.
 

johnnybear

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The first two parter was excellent! The Final Battle was good and the music was what made it for me! The TV series..not so good to be honest with episodes 3 & 4 conflicting with each other and the masks looking really bad! You could tell the show was on rocky ground with the amount of actors disappearing throughout the run only to be replaced with actors playing brothers and the like! And that Charles and Diana stuff...please!
JB
 

Doctor Omega

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Aftermath

Although the show had been cancelled in March 1985, the sets from the production remained in storage for some time as discussions transpired over rendering a conclusion to the V saga. Among the options explored were a stand-alone TV movie or a final miniseries. Several scenarios were discussed:

  • The Resistance goes to the Visitor homeworld and attempt to stop Diana from assassinating the Leader
  • An exploration of the aftermath of the peace treaty in "The Return". A hardline US government would impose harsh conditions on the Visitors who choose to remain behind after their race departed, leaving the Resistance to ally with them
In 1989 there was a proposed sequel series by J. Michael Straczynski entitled "V: The Next Chapter" that would have followed up five years after the conclusion of the original show. Ham Tyler would have been the only character to have returned and would have taken place in Chicago. The rest of the remaining cast had been temporarily or permanently written off, with Mike Donovan captured, Willie executed, Lydia assassinated, Donovan taken prisoner, Julie living in exile in Australia, Diana reassigned, and Elizabeth having died.

Warner Brothers ultimately passed on the project, and Straczynski instead turned to Alien Nation.

Reception

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch wrote: "...a TV series with so much promise – based on two successful, highly rated science fiction miniseries on NBC in the early 1980s – produced such a silly, loathsome mess...NBC tried to make a weekly series out of [the mini-series that unraveled] the show so terribly it must surely rank as one of the worst TV sci-fi experiments ever. The cast becomes dangerously unstable. Ironside quits in the middle of the show's run with no apparent reason. Others are killed without meaning. The special effects are cheapened and the use of stock footage – previously filmed scenes used again and again – is maddening. (At one point, they actually used stock footage from the previous week's episode.)... What was once a pretty decent science fiction saga with good drama, humor and suspense ends up becoming "Dynasty" with lizard makeup and laser guns. There's even an episode in which Diana marries her alien boss named (what else?) Charles."[6]

In Nielsen ratings V finished outside of the Top 30 in the 1984-1985 season,[7] ending the season ranked 57th with a 12.5 rating/18 share.[8][9]

Production notes
  • Despite the high budget, producers had only half the resources given to the production of V:The Final Battle. Executive Story Consultant David Ambromowitz stated, “The budget for the mini-series was about double what we had per hour, so that's what was really difficult. It's impossible to retain the quality of the show with half the money, half the time to shoot things, half the special effects, half the sets, half the characters and half of everything.” [10]
  • Liberation Day's shot of the alien fleet hiding behind the moon was achieved using models (the 30-inch Saucer in the foreground, newly built smaller ships behind and a 36-inch model of the moon's surface) as the budget was insufficient for optical compositing [11]
  • The TV series' single season was released on LaserDisc in Japan in April 1989 (bilingual English/Japanese with subtitles) as a massive 10-disc box set, which included a "Diana Special" (in Japanese only) on side 20. It was later issued on Region 1 DVD in 2004, and Region 2 in 2008.
  • The weekly series reused a lot of action footage from the mini-series. This was especially evident in the Visitor skyfighter chase scene in the pilot episode, where nearly all external shots were lifted from the climax scene of the original mini-series.
  • In the original mini-series and The Final Battle, the Visitors' voices were given, among other post-processing, a pitch shift effect. This was dropped from the weekly series.
 
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