Whereas I might tune in to a remake of an old television show out of curiosity and even enjoy it, I generally prefer the original. The remake of V is unusual in that respect, though, in that I’ve never seen the original, yet I’m watching the remake with my wife because she numbers the original among her favorites. Oddly, even though I’ve never seen the original I find myself in some ways “missing” the original and wondering in what respects it may have been different.

I guess I’ll soon find out, because the weekend after part one aired we found a VHS box set at Half Price Books which included the complete original mini-series as well as “The Final Battle.” In this case, the VHS is actually preferable to the DVD because the latter cuts off the top and bottom of the original full-screen presentation in that ridiculous “faux letterbox” format. I don’t know when we’ll find the time to watch it, but the cancellation of Dollhouse has opened up an hour in our weekly viewing schedule, so we’ll at least be watching the remake.

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I know I watched the original V, but the only thing I remember about it, is that Robert Englund was in it, just before and during the time that he started to hit it big as Freddy Krueger. I won't be watching the new one - I tend not to like re-makes of my old favorites much. Although, to be fair, from what little I remember of the old V, it wasn't that earth-shatteringly good.

I think the scene from the old show that stands out most in my mind is from a point where the Visitors had begun to show their true colors. Two teenagers were using spray-paint to deface a Visitor-friendly wall poster, when an older European guy - I forget his back-story but he'd been in occupied Europe during the Second World War - stopped them, took the paint, and said, "This is how you do it", while spray-painting a "V" across the poster, thus evoking the old "'V' for Victory" slogan.
I watched the original, but didn't like it very much. So, far, I've enjoyed the new one, although some of the special effects are just as groan-inducing as those in the original.
There's already been a bit of discussion about V in the "Don't Touch That Dial" group.

Jenn & I are enjoying the new show.
Sorry to hear the DVD of V is so cropped- I hate that. The original mini is quite good, the sequel is horrible (although it starts off strong) and the subsequent weekly series was just silly. As for the new version, I find it moving way too quickly at the cost of any decent characterization. I gave it up after the premiere episode.
Now that the remake of V is on temporary hiatus, we've begun to watch the original on VHS. The original is not doing anything for me, but now that I've seen it I expect to enjoy the remake a little more just knowing what they're trying to improve upon. So foar the remake is hitting all the same beats, but they've switched around several male/female roles. Tracy, OTOH, is enjoying re-watching the original imensely,,. then again, she was ten when she last saw it. When I was ten, my favorite show was Planet of the Apes, and that DVD set didn't do anything for her. As I said above, I enjoyed the remake, but I prefer the original five movies and TV show.

There's another show, Battlestar Galactica, which I used to watch and enjoy, and which was recently remade. My friends and I used to make fun of it at the time, but we all watched it. I watched the pilot movie of the remake and, while I enjoyed it, it didn't really do anything for me and I didn't go on to follow the new series. I have the pilot movie of the original on VHS, and Tracy has never seen it. After her making me watch V, the trade-off is going to be Battlestar Galactica.

Speaking of remakes, I recently watched the remake of The Prisoner, and while I enjoyed it (sort of), it doesn't really hold a candle to the original. It'd have to watch it a second time to really understand the twist they put on it, but I have no desire to do so in the near future (or ever, really). The problem is, what's the point of remaking a show if it's going to be exactly the same as the original? Then again, if it's changed too much, what's the appeal? It's a Catch-22.

Back to V, the original is a heavy-handed allegory for the Holocaust, using scientists as stand-ins for Jews. I think it's a pretty good show to teach ten year olds story structure, but it's sledgehammer symbolism is too ham-fisted for an adult audience. It does have nostalia value, though, as my wife can surely attest.
This post has less to do with V specifically than with remakes of old TV shows in general. When I was very young I rmember my older brother used to watch Star Trek, but I couldn't understnad it. He pointed me to Lost in Space, and that was more my speed until I "grew into" Star Trek. Years later, I asked him if he planned to watch Star Trek: The Next Generation. His response was something along the lines of, "What for? I don't need to. I've seen the original." I didn't understand that line of thinking then, but I'm beginning to understand it now.

I did watch ST:TNG, but only because it was a continuation of the original series. Had it been simply a remake, I doubt I would have gotten through even the first season. After we finished watching V, we watched the pilot movie of Battlestar Galactica. That wasn't a very good show (and I even knew it at the time), but I enjoyed watching my VHS copy. Although the remake is probably tecnically a better show, I don't need to see it because I've seen the original. If it had been a continuation, then maybe, but I have no use for a remake. I think that's why there's so much resistance to starting Buffy the Vampire Slayer over from scratch (remake), whereas Doctor Who has caught on (continuation). Come to the tink of it, that's probably why I'm on the fence about the new Star Trek movie: it's a remake dressed up like a continuation. Hmm...

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