V The Second Generation
Seems like I am on a Sci-Fi tear lately. I recently picked up V The Second Generation By Kenneth Johnson. Kenneth Johnson wrote and created the original mini-series. The book was published earlier this year as a sequel to the original NBC V Mini-series. The book disregards any events of V the Final Battle and the subsequent TV show (Johnson had nothing to do with either of these). Here are some excerpts from wikipedia to give you a reminder of the story.
Aliens arrive on Earth in a fleet of 50 huge, saucer-shaped motherships, which hover over key major cities. They reveal themselves on the roof of the United Nations building in New York City, and are human in appearance, but require special glasses to protect their eyes and have a distinctive low resonance to their voices. Simply referred to as the Visitors, they reach out in friendship, ostensibly seeking the help of humans to obtain chemicals needed to aid their ailing world. In return, the Visitors promise to share their advanced technology with humanity.
However, strange things are soon noted. Scientists find themselves facing increasing media hostility, and government restrictions on their activities and movements. Others, particularly those keen on examining the Visitors more closely, begin to disappear or are discredited
Journalist and TV cameraman Michael Donovan (Singer) sneaks aboard one of the Visitors’ motherships and discovers that beneath their human like facade, the aliens are reptilian in nature, and carnivorous – preferring to eat live food, like rodents and birds
A resistance movement is formed, determined to expose and oppose the Visitors as much as possible…The true purpose of the Visitors’ trip to Earth is 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 soldiers/cannon fodder for the Visitors’ wars with other alien races.
The book picks the story up 20 years later the resistance has been badly crippled and earth is under total Visitor rule, 50% of the Earth’s water has already been taken by the Visitors and millions of people have disappeared. At the end of the mini-series one of the Resistance tactics is to transmit in to space a distress call in the hope that the visitors have enemies that will come and help. Well it took 20 years but the visitors do have enemies and they make contact with the resistance. As you can imagine not a moment too soon… in classic sci-fi drama they show up in humanities darkest hour.
The story and prose are both good for sci-fi, perhaps that is because its not so much sci-fi as it is a story about life under an oppressive fascist regime and people working in common cause for freedom. It brings back some of the characters both good and bad from the original mini-series and updates you what has transpired in the last 20 years.
This is an enjoyable summer read you certainly feel caught up in the cause. I do have doubts if this book can stand on its own… not that it is a constant reference to the original mini-series but having recently re-watched the mini-series it certainly added to my enjoyment of the novel and provides a stark contrast from the visitor take over to them being entrenched in dominion over the earth.
If you enjoyed V in the 80’s this book will likely not disappoint.
V is for Victory
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