I’m partial to this show because it was my favorite when I was 13—and introduced me to the much larger, exciting world of science fiction in general. Unfortunately, the show didn’t really live up to its promise and became, in the end, fairly soap opera-like and silly. I still loved it! I can even remember the day it went off the air for good (while in reruns)—July 5, 1985. “V” the four-hour original and the six-hour “V—The Final Battle” precede the episodes listed here. Rumors say that during a planned second season, Julie was to be killed off and the other main characters would have hit the road in search of an alien device. Spoilers ahead!
1. “Liberation Day” (October 26, 1985): Immediately after the events in “V—The Final Battle,” Mike Donovan (Marc Singer) gives chase to Diana (Jane Badler) and captures her. One year later, Elias (Michael Wright) and Willie (Robert Englund) celebrate Liberation day at his restaurant, the Club Creole. Nathan Bates’ company, Science Frontiers, is trying to unlock the secrets of Visitor technology with Julie’s help (Faye Grant), and Mike (Marc Singer) is jealous of Nathan (Lane Smith). Diana is taken to trial, but kidnapped along the way—by Ham Tyler (Michael Ironside). Martin (Frank Ashmore) attempts to kill Diana, but dies in the process. Diana escapes and calls the fleet, narrowly escaping Mike. Meanwhile, Elizabeth (Jenny Beck) begins to act strangely and leaves the ranch to find a cave. There she begins a metamorphosis.
2. “Dreadnought” (November 2, 1984): Diana returns to the Mothership, where she meets Lydia (June Chadwick). Elizabeth (Jennifer Cooke) leaves the cave as a young woman. It turns out the red dust toxin only works in climates with a warm and cold season, so the Visitors return, wreaking havoc on Los Angeles. Diana returns to Science Frontiers and strikes a deal with Nathan Bates: if she makes sure no armed troops stay in L.A., he won’t release the red dust into the atmosphere. He tells Julie he bargained with Diana because the red dust turns out to be also harmful to humans. Diana, on the other hand, has sent for a weapon called the Particle Beam Triax. The resistance is unhappy with Bates’ “open city” plan and decides to attack the Mothership. They make it to the bridge, where Robert takes a bullet and then sacrifices himself to stop the Triax. Ham fails in his sniper attempt to kill Bates and Bates thanks Julie for saving his life. The “open city” bargain stands.
3. “Breakout” (May 24, 1985): Note: This episode aired for the first time after the show was cancelled, but belongs here in terms of show chronology. Mike and Ham try to rescue Sean, but are captured and taken to a Visitor work camp. Diana threatens Bates and offers his son Kyle (Jeff Yagher) for Elizabeth. Turns out Kyle is also at the work camp, which is surrounded by a sand moat where predatory crivits live. Robin (Blair Tefkin) is also at the camp. They escape using a shorted-out wire and pieces of a garden hose, but Robin is separated from them. Diana has come to see Kyle, and he diverts her from the escape by seducing her. Once she sees what’s going on, he is able to escape. Meanwhile, Elias lets Elizabeth play the piano at the Club Creole, but a Visitor recognizes the Mark of Zon on her hand and pursues her. She uses her powers to protect herself.
4. “The Deception” (November 9, 1984): Robin flags down a passing motorcyclist—Kyle Bates. They see a plane go down, and the dying pilot gives Kyle a bag to take to the Club Creole. Julie decodes the message from the bag, which provides a rendezvous time and place for getting Elizabeth out of L.A. Kyle is being held at Club Creole, and he meets Elizabeth when she falls through a door right onto him. He is intrigued, but Elias denies her existence. Kyle agrees to provide bikes for the rendezvous. Meanwhile, Mike has been captured and placed in a holographic room. He is made to believe a year has passed, he and Julie—played by Diana and Lydia—are married, and Elizabeth’s moving to New York has helped create a new weapon that defeated the Visitors. He provides details of the rendezvous before realizing it is all a deception and escapes. He rushes to the rendezvous site, where Kyle evades an ambush but Diana waits in the helicopter meant for Elizabeth.
5. “The Sanction” (November 16, 1984): Mike sees training tapes of a Visitor named Klaus training young people, including Sean (Nick Katt), in combat. He goes to the Visitor Embassy to rescue his son, who does not want to be rescued. Klaus tracks them to a safe house and fights with Mike, who leaves him for dead in a ravine. Sean returns to the embassy, where Mike follows while eluding Klaus. They engage in another battle and Sean finds himself unable to kill his father, but he chooses to leave with Diana. Meanwhile, Elizabeth and Kyle take a ride. When Elizabeth thinks she sees her mom, she overpowers theater employees with her mind before she and Kyle escape. After evading Visitors and spending the night on the riverbank, they return to the Club Creole, where Robin has finally been reunited with her friends.
6. “Visitor’s Choice” (November 23, 1984): The Resistance learns of the encapsulator, a machine designed to triple the processing speed of humans for food. They decide to raid the conference at which it will debut. They have some initial obstacles to overcome when meeting the local resistance, but go in with their help to explode the site. Julie becomes trapped in the kitchen, and when the others go back for her they rescue a group of humans in the freezers. Ham and Kyle raid one of Bates’ warehouses, where Kyle is captured. He is interrogated by his father and by Mr. Chiang (Aki Aleong), but Elizabeth makes her way to the warehouse to save him.
7. “The Overlord” (November 30, 1984): An escaped Visitor prisoner named Glenna (Sheryl Lee Ralph) comes to Club Creole for help. She convinces the Resistance to come to the aid of the town of Rawlinsville, whose citizens are being forced to work cobalt mines for the aliens. Julie sends information about a munitions shipment to Mike, and the Resistance hijacks the munitions truck for use in the raid. Glenna turns out to want the cobalt mine for herself, and her betrayal stings Elias to the core. He is forced to confront her when the Resistance escapes and her people go after them. Bates authorizes Chiang to find proof that Julie is a traitor. Robin and Julie fight; when Robin returns to apologize, she sees Chiang stealing Julie’s computer disk. The two women create a plan to exchange it.
8. “The Dissident” (December 14, 1984): Bates and Diana conspire to create a force field around L.A., passable for Nathan only by a four-letter code. Mike and Willie capture a Visitor to find out the name of the field’s creator, which is Jacob. Jacob is a pacifist and working on the force field under threat from Diana. Mike and Ham go to the Mothership to rescue blind Jacob from Diana’s conversion process. The three steal a fighter to fly home, but must contend with fighters sent by Diana. They crash-land. Kyle and Elizabeth find them while they’re being chased on the ground by Visitors, and the group makes their way to the site of the safe corridor. Meanwhile back at Science Frontiers, Julie is trying to break the code so they can get through and realizes just in time that it’s Kyle’s name. Jacob destroys the force field, killing himself in the process. Robin tells Elizabeth that she’s in love with Kyle.
9. “Reflections in Terror” (December 21, 1984): Diana creates a clone of Elizabeth using her blood. The clone escapes, killing Visitors and seeking out her “source,” Elizabeth. At Club Creole, a man takes pictures of Julie leading the crowd in “America the Beautiful” to drown out the sounds of the Visitor national anthem. Ham and Mike meet up with an old friend, Chris Faber (Mickey Jones) while smuggling orphaned children into L.A. They take the kids to Club Creole but begin to suspect a trap, as there are lots of service vans in the area. Julie goes to speak to Nathan, who lets her know that Club Creole is in danger and makes it impossible for her to warn them. Bates’ goons go into the restaurant and a firefight ensues; the Resistance sets off explosives. Julie returns just in time to see the club go up in flames. The clone finds Kyle and Elizabeth just as the Visitor hunter Laird locates her. Robin and Elizabeth resolve their relationship and their conflict over Kyle.
10. “The Conversion” (January 4, 1985): Ham and Kyle are caught in a Visitor trap, and Ham undergoes the conversion process. During the conversion he sees visions of his Vietnamese wife and daughter with Mike. On the Mothership, Charles (Duncan Regehr) arrives to oversee the operations on Earth. The Resistance captures Lydia and she reveals Ham’s location. They rescue him. Diana sets up a hostage exchange for Kyle, which will take place at an abandoned sports arena so the Resistance can film it and set it up with a backup plan. Once everyone’s in place, Bates uses the keyword that will activate Ham’s brain and cause him to fire at Mike. Elizabeth figures out what’s happening and acts accordingly; in the ensuing chaos, Bates is shot but the Visitors, including Lydia, escape.
11. “The Hero” (January 11, 1985): Charles sends a group of Visitors to shoot up Science Frontiers, posing as Resistance members, so that the public will turn against the Resistance. Bates remains in a coma, and Chiang allows Diana to use a computer-generated image of Nathan to appear on TV. Bates’ image says the Visitors will execute one Resistance sympathizer per day until the leaders turn themselves in. As it turns out, these hostages include Robin and are located at Caniff Printing. Elias is killed when he and Willie go investigate what’s happening there. One of the hostages, John Lane (Bruce Davison), switches lottery numbers with one of the others so he’ll be the first to die. The Resistance comes to the aid of the hostages, although Elizabeth initially has some trouble with her powers. Charles takes on Mike personally. John joins the Resistance.
12. “The Betrayal” (January 18, 1985): Willie is shot while meeting a Fifth Columnist for information on an arms shipment and the Resistance kidnaps a Visitor doctor named Howie (Richard Minchenberg) to treat him. Howie turns out to be a member of the Fifth Column, and tells them about the arms shipments and xenon fuel being held at the hospital. John continues his mission to impregnate Robin. Mr. Chiang plots with Diana and Charles to take over the open city himself. Bates comes out of his coma and Kyle finds him, but as they try to escape Bates is killed by Mr. Chiang. Kyle returns the favor. The Resistance raids the hospital; during the raid, John reveals he is a Visitor and takes Robin hostage. Howie kills him and the Resistance escapes. Robin decides to leave L.A. Ham and Chris go with her.
13. “The Rescue” (February 1. 1985): With Bates dead, the Visitors begin a reign of terror. The father of a family that’s hiding out is an old med school associate of Julie’s and looks for her help in delivering his child. She and Kyle agree to come with him. Charles comes up with a brilliant plan to control Diana—he will marry her and send her home to bear his children. Diana is thwarted in an attempt to run away, but after seeing her in a ritual bath Charles changes his mind and decides to keep her with him. This sparks Lydia’s jealousy and she plots to poison Diana; a plot that backfires when Charles becomes the victim. Meanwhile James (Judson Scott) raids the Club Creole; Elizabeth’s powers help the Resistance escape. Now they must find Julie and Kyle before they return to a trap. Julie decides to take the family back to Resistance headquarters, where a standoff with James ensues. Fortunately Mike is on hand to create a diversion. The baby is born.
14. “The Champion” (February 8, 1985): While on a weapons run, Mike and Kyle meet Kathy Courtney (Deborah Wakeham), a ranch owner. Mike agrees to stay and help organize the local residents against the Visitors, but only one person shows up at the meeting. Another local betrays Mike to Lt. James and the other resistance members step in to the rescue. Kathy and daughter Jessie (Sherri Stoner) would like Mike to stay, but the Resistance needs him. Meanwhile on the Mothership, Diana puts Lydia on trial for the death of Charles and sentences her to death, but this is interrupted by the timely arrival of Inspector General Philip (Frank Ashmore). He declares trial by combat. Lydia holds the upper hand in the one-on-one battle with Diana when Philip says new evidence shows a third person might be responsible for the killing.
15. “The Wildcats” (February 15, 1985): A diptheria epidemic and a shortage of ampicillin to treat it leads Kyle and Julie to ally with a teen gang called the Wildcats. But when a raid yields only baking powder in place of the much-needed medicine, the two suspect a spy among the Wildcats. Mike, still in L.A., agrees to make an ampicillin run to them, but the spy informs the Visitors. One of the Wildcats, Ellen, tells Willie she’s falling for him, and he reveals his true nature to her. She runs off. When Willie tells the other Wildcats, they believe he’s the spy until Elizabeth tells them that Ellen is trapped in a ravine. One Wildcat, Andy, stays behind while they go to rescue her, and Julie catches him in communication with the enemy. Now they must come up with an alternate plan for meeting Mike. On the Mothership, Diana and Lydia decide to frame pharmacist Marta (Gela Jacobson) for Charles’ murder, using a doctored video. As is required in the case of a murdered Supreme Commander, Marta is buried with him in space. Diana makes sure that Marta is alive and conscious for the experience.
16. “The Littlest Dragon” (February 22, 1985): Willie, Mike and Kyle walk into a trap while trying to take out the Mentamorph, a Visitor device that uses mind control. Fifth Columnist Robert, on the Mothership, realizes this in time and sabotages the fake Mentamorph. He also steals the crystals that power the ship’s lasers, then escapes in a shuttle with his very pregnant wife Glenda. Philip chases them to the surface, and Diana arranges for Angela, who bears a grudge against Philip, to be his escort and to kill him when the chance arises. Robert and Glenda crash-land near the warehouse where the Resistance has taken cover. With Mike and Willie’s help Glenda delivers a child while Philip and Angela box them in. Diana makes Lydia think it was her idea to order Philip’s assassination, and records Lydia’s command. On the planet below, Philip issues a challenge and he and Mike engage in hand-to-hand combat. Philip, who believes Mike killed his brother, wants revenge. Glenda, protecting her child, kills Angela while Mike convinces Philip that Martin was his friend.
17. “War of Illusions” (March 8, 1985): Philip tells Mike and Kyle about the Battlesphere, which is being programmed to destroy the southwestern U.S. in 36 hours. They search for Dr. Atkins (Conrad Janis), a professor who might be able to help. Dr. Atkins’ son Henry (Josh Richman) has hacked into the Visitors’ computers, and the aliens come for him. Dr. Atkins is captured and interrogated, but Diana soon learns his son is the true hacker. When the Resistance arrives at his shop, Henry shows them what he’s done and wants his father rescued first. The Resistance raids a warehouse, but Dr. Atkins isn’t among the prisoners. Henry wants to give himself up until Kyle persuades him otherwise. The group breaks into Science Frontiers and Henry disables the Battlesphere. On the Mothership, Diana and Lydia are becoming suspicious of Philip and try to catch him passing along Battlesphere plans to the Resistance.
18. “Secret Underground” (March 15, 1985): Julie and Mike go undercover on the Mothership as Visitor doctors to find a list of Resistance leaders and headquarters hidden by a Fifth Columnist before his death. While there, they meet Stephen Maitland (John Calvin)—an ex-boyfriend of Julie’s. He is working on a virus designed to turn humans into vegetables. Mike calls him a collaborator, but Steven soon reveals that he is trying to slow down the virus’ development. Diana comes close to catching Julie and Mike but is fooled for a time by masks. She eventually captures Julie and holds her in the room set up for the Feast of Romalon, where Julie figures out the disk’s hiding place. Mike and Stephen work together to free her, then destroy the virus. Meanwhile, Diana has arranged a little surprise for Lydia; her brother Nigel (Ken Olandt) will be the sacrifice for Romalon. Lydia asks for Philip’s help, and Philip agrees to abolish the sacrifice—but Diana still needs to vote with them. At the Feast, Philip appears and asks for Diana’s proof of his Fifth Column involvement. When she can’t provide any, Philip says he’ll charge her with mutiny unless he votes against the sacrifice.
19. “The Return” (March 22, 1985): Just as James traps the Resistance members, an order comes down from the Mothership to stop all hostilities. Ships start to retreat from other cities and the Leader communicates with Elizabeth through mind power. The Resistance boards the Mothership, where Mike discovers a fencing-like sport and Willie mets up with his fiancé Thelma (Marilyn Jones), who thought he was dead. Diana plots to kill Philip, Mike and the Leader. But when she thinks she’s destroyed the Leader’s shuttle, it turns out to be a decoy. Diana then takes over the bridge, sealing it off. She is ready to destroy both Earth and the ship, but the Resistance members with help from the Leader, through Elizabeth, blast through the doors and take her away. Elizabeth steps into the Leader’s shuttle and it flies off. Kyle has stowed away inside.