V, for “Visitor”, not “Vendetta”, was an odd sort of thing to me. On the one hand, I eagerly watched the original miniseries in 1983 and enjoyed it. I bought the novelization of the miniseries and its East Coast Crisis companion book. I wrote a program for my VIC-20 to display the visitors’ symbol, a variant on a swastika. But when the TV series began, I didn’t really bother.
Part of this was the usual reason I didn’t bother with TV shows. The only color TV was in the den, so watching anything meant first wresting control from anyone else in the family, none of whom were much interested in science fiction, but even if I gained control I’d be sharing the room with people who would happily go on about how stupid what I was watching was and have no problem talking loudly on the phone while it was on and whatnot. The alternative was watching on the black-and-white TV in my parents’ bedroom, and that didn’t excite me. (Doctor Who escaped this by being on at 10:30 PM on Saturday nights, when everyone else had gone to bed.)
So although I was intrigued by the concepts in “V”, I didn’t really pursue it much.
This V toy (one that really weakens the “it’s not a doll, it’s an action figure!” debate) was itself kind of a cheat. I didn’t get him in 1984, when he came out, but a couple years later, when he was on deep clearance at Lionel Playworld. Seriously, I remember paying very very little for him and them having a crate of them. He’s a neat toy. The head comes off to reveal the lizard face, the tongue comes out, the sunglasses get lost, the uniform is well made, and he’s pretty large, meaning he’s out of scale with pretty much any other toy, so there isn’t much you can do with him.
What I did with him was take the fake human head off and put it on this vinyl Godzilla figure I had:
The result was named “Kenzilla” after Barbie’s boyfriend. Kenzilla came to college with me in 1986. The rest of the V figure stayed home.
When did I get it? They came out in 1984 and I probably got mine in 1986.
Do I still have it? Not the figure, not the head, not the vinyl Godzilla. I honestly thought I still had the latter.