NBC may give 'V' new life

June 10, 2003

LOS ANGELES - In May 1983, alien Visitors came to Earth for a television miniseries. They returned in a second miniseries one year later. They had a brief run on a dramatic series from 1984 to '85, but what have those aliens been up to for nearly 20 years? NBC may answer that question with a script order for a three-hour telefilm "V: The Second Generation."

The original creator of "V," Kenneth Johnson, will write the script and, if it's greenlit, he'll direct and produce as well.

"V," short for "Visitors," was constructed as a science fiction allegory for the Nazi takeover of Germany in the 1930s. The aliens arrived ostensibly in peace, but soon gained control of the media and took over the Earth. Only a gang of resistance fighters and a mysterious Red Dust bacteria could stop them.


The regular television series picked up after the war and in its final episode, an uneasy peace between humans and the Visitors appeared possible. That last episode aired on March 22, 1985.

The new telefilm will pick up the story 20 years later. The characters played by Marc Singer, Faye Grant, Jane Badler and Robert Englund may return, but there will be plenty of new faces.

"The appeal of 'V' continues and we look forward to getting a new script that could introduce it to a new generation of viewers," says Jeff Gaspin, who oversees longform programming at NBC. "Likewise, we would like to move the story forward with a fresh take on this timeless story of human resilience and resistance."

There's clearly an audience for more "V." The DVD release of the original miniseries has shipped over 250,000 units.



LOS ANGELES - The women on "For Love or Money" know a secret that the man they're pursuing doesn't. They know that the winner can pocket a million dollars for ditching him. However, the show's central hunk also seems to be holding back, one that he kept from the women and NBC officials alike.

Attorney Rob Campos' official NBC biography and the one on his law firm's Web site both reference the "For Love or Money" hunk's experiences in the JAG Corps. Neither bio mentions the drunken incident that got Campos booted from the JAG training program and ultimately led to the end of his military career.

Naturally, the scandal was unearthed by the good folks at

A spokesperson for NBC and the show's producer Bruce Nash told that Campos failed to disclose the problems he caused in mid-June 1999 while he was training in Newport, R.I. After a night of drinking, Campos allegedly barged into the room of a the-27-year-old fellow trainee, made advances and groped her before she kneed him in the groin and fled the room.

According to interviews conducted by TSG, the female trainee didn't immediately report the incident, but rumors spread and she was finally interviewed by Naval Criminal Investigative Service agents. Campos was immediately removed from the JAG course. The victim in the incident refers to Campos as "that big jerk, that big meathead," but seems to view the implosion of his military career as punishment enough.

For his part, Campos, in an interview with TSG, remembers the drinking, but nothing else that may have followed. He still suggests that the woman's story may have been a fabrication, offering, ""My buddies said she got angry because I was too drunk to get it up."

No word on how NBC will handle this Prince Charming.


LOS ANGELES - Less than a week after ABC pulled the plug on Janeane Garofalo's proposed midseason comedy, "Slice o' Life," speculation is already building that the comedian fell victim to her liberal political views.

In a column in the Chicago Sun-Times, Bill Zwecker cites an unnamed source close to Garofalo who remains convinced that the show's failure was an example "of a network bowing to the perceived power of the Bush administration. Janeane is convinced her politics and all the hate mail the right-wing lobby stirred up during the war is what is behind all this."

Certainly ABC would never cop to anything so nefarious and the Disney-owned company blamed the show's failure on the usual generalities, such as creative disagreements and script problems.

Garofalo was going to star in "Slice" playing a producer on a newsmagazine stuck handling human-interest stories.

In her own life, though, Garofalo hasn't been nearly so touchy-feely, coming out as one of the most outspoken critics of the war with Iraq. This show of political advocacy has earned the actress an unceasing string of taunting from the conservative New York Post's "Page Six" and threats and catcalls from other voices on the right.

Answering the title of Zwecker's column, "Did liberal-bashers cost Garofalo her sitcom?" a poster on the message board responds simply, "I certainly hope so. If it didn't, we weren't trying hard enough."

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