“V” creator looks at U.S. under occupation
From Friday’s The Oklahoman:
By Matthew Price
The alien takeover of earth in the hit 1983 TV miniseries “V” spurred comic books, video games and other ancillary spinoffs. Creator Kenneth Johnson returned to the world of “V” this year with his sequel novel “V: The Second Generation.”
“The Second Generation” is being developed as a possible TV movie or miniseries.
The original miniseries, a story of America under occupation seen by 80 million people, was inspired by Sinclair Lewis’ book, “It Can’t Happen Here.”
“With ‘V,’ it was very interesting, because my initial concept for ‘V’ had nothing to do whatsoever with aliens,” Johnson said. “I had been going through the works of Sinclair Lewis, who wrote ‘Elmer Gantry’ and ‘Main Street’ and a bunch of great novels. A lesser known novel of his is called ‘It Can’t Happen Here.’”
“It Can’t Happen Here” details an America overrun by fascism.
“What an interesting idea, to turn America into a state that was run by a tyranny and operated by fascists,” Johnson said, who was inspired to write a screenplay about a grassroots fascistic movement taking hold in the United States.
Brandon Tartikoff, then the head of NBC, read it, and wasn’t sure Americans would get fascism. He proposed that America would instead be under occupation by the Russians, or Chinese. Johnson said he wasn’t sure it was believable that the Chinese or Russians could sustain an occupation. Then, Johnson said, someone suggested aliens.
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