November 5 plays a key role in both Alan Moore’s original dystopian graphic novel V for Vendetta and the 2005 film adaptation. It’s the reason your feed may currently be cluttered with Guy Fawkes masks and people talking about the “gunpowder treason and plot.” V for Vendetta was penned by Moore during the ‘80s, with art by David Lloyd and Tony Weare. The series explores notions of anarchy vs. fascism, with the titular V, adorned in a Guy Fawkes mask, standing for the former against an oppressive U.K. government that labels him as a terrorist. The fifth of November references Guy Fawkes night and the “Gunpowder Plot,” a 1605 failed assassination attempt on King James I of England. The event — and the catchy associated poem — plays a major thematic role in both the graphic novel and film.
Moore wasn’t happy with the film (or at least the script for it), but that’s pretty much SOP when it comes to Hollywood adaptations of his works. The film definitely takes liberties with the graphic novel, but overall it’s not a bad flick, anchored especially by strong performances from Natalie Portman and Hugo Weaving as V — his delivered in its entirety from behind V’s iconic mask. The adaptation was written by the Wachowskis and directed by James McTeigue (his directorial debut — he had previously worked with the Wachowskis on the Matrix films as an assistant director.
TODAY IN TELEVISION
Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (ABC, 8/7c) — “f.z.z.t.”
“When floating bodies turn up, Coulson and the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D must hunt down an elusive killer. No one is safe — not even the team.” Plus, Lost’s “Man in Black” Titus Welliver guest stars as Agent Blake, a character he previously played in the Marvel One-Shot short Item 47.
Face Off (Syfy, 9/8c) — “Swan Song”
“Season 5 comes to a close with the artists creating a swan and sorcerer for a special performance of “Swan Lake” by the Los Angeles Ballet.”
Person of Interest (CBS, 10/9c) — “The Perfect Mark”
“The team keep tabs on a hypnotherapist whose number has come up. Elsewhere, Carter goes after an antiquities dealer who has an HR connection.”
TODAY IN DVD
Doctor Who: Series 1-7 Limited Edition Blu-Ray Giftset
If you need something to tide you over until the November 23 premiere of “The Day of the Doctor,” dive into a marathon viewing of the full run of the modern Doctor Who series with this snazzy Blu-ray collection. In addition to seven seasons’ worth of the Doctor’s adventures, the set includes tons of behind-the-scenes features.
Farscape: 15th Anniversary Edition (Blu-Ray & DVD)
Farscape won’t technically celebrate its 15th anniversary until next year, but it remains alongside Babylon 5 as one of the best science fiction series that rarely seems to get the credit it deserves. Whether you’ve never seen the show or think it’s time for another viewing, the 15th Anniversary Edition includes all four seasons of the show, plus the following bonus features:
- Memories of Moya — A documentary featuring the cast and crew reminiscing about the experience and legacy of the sci-fi classic, available on the DVD collection for the first time!
Farscape Undressed: the Rarely-Seen, Long-Sought-After Behind-the-Scenes Special
- Three Archival Documentaries: In the Beginning: A Look Back with Brian Henson, Making of a Space Opera, and Season Three: A Look Back with Executive Producer David Kemper
- Three Inside Farscape featurettes: Villains, Visual Effects and Save Farscape
- 35 Audio Commentaries
- Deleted Scenes, Director’s Cut Scenes, and an Alternate Version of the Season Two Premiere
- Video Profiles and Behind-the-Scenes Interviews with the Characters, Cast, and Creative Team of Farscape
- Listening In with Composer Guy Gross Featurettes for 12 Episodes
- Original TV Promos
- And Much More!
The Right Stuff: 30th Anniversary Edition (Blu-Ray)
This look at the Mercury astronauts celebrates the film’s 1983 premiere and stars Sam Shepard as Chuck Yeager, Scott Glenn as Alan Shepard, Ed Harris as John Glenn, Dennis Quaid as Gordon Cooper, Fred Ward as Gus Grissom, Charles Frank as Scott Carpenter, Lance Henriksen as Wally Schirra, and Scott Paulin as Deke Slayton.