The long-awaited V — and "the Visitors," as the show's aliens are known — finally arrive Tuesday at 8/7c on ABC. But don't worry, they are of peace, always. Well, maybe not always. Fortunately for Chad Decker (Scott Wolf), the arrival of the genetically blessed ETs boosts his job status when the TV reporter becomes the voice of the Vs in the media. Wolf tells TVGuide.com how Decker will screw up, what makes the show different from the 1983 miniseries on which it's based and why its recent scheduling switcheroo is nothing to worry about.
TVGuide.com: How is is the show different from the miniseries?
Scott Wolf: There are obvious differences between our V and the original miniseries. Visually, the ability to generate this world — the special effects and computer graphics — it's just light-years from where it was from when this show was created in the mid-'80s. It really looks like a movie, like a thriller every week. From a storytelling standpoint, a lot of it is faithful to what made the original so compelling. It's still the same basic framework, but it's updated. It is very much about how we live in a post-9/11 world.
TVGuide.com: Have you felt pressure to make the show great in light of the scheduling delays?
Wolf: It's less pressure and more excitement. Oftentimes, it's complicated to begin a story that has this kind of epic scope to it — the arriving on Earth is the biggest story you can tell. Every time there's been any question, we've stopped and actually made adjustments. It's incredibly rare. That costs money and takes time. Most of the time, the powers that be say, 'Just make it as good as you can.' In this case, there's such a passion behind this story and this project, that they've not just thrown us to the wolves. The result is that we're going to have great episodes.
TVGuide.com: Chad has an interesting motivation for helping the Vs. Will we learn more about his backstory?
Wolf: When we meet him and see his first encounter with [Anna], the leader of the Visitors, he's put in a position where he's forced to either give up the opportunity of a lifetime or compromise himself in a deep way. You come to understand why Chad is wired the way he is. On the surface, Chad is not necessarily the best guy. He's very ambitious, but I think the thing that makes him really complicated and fun to play is that he's ambiguous. There's a sense that he's a little up for grabs. In a larger way, he represents an idea, in terms of how much faith should be placed in our media figures. It asks the question: Is that a good idea? Or is it potentially dangerous?
TVGuide.com: Will Chad seek redemption?
Wolf: Yes, pretty quickly. As the story moves forward, we see a guy who clearly does not like having to bend at somebody else's will and tries to fight his way back into controlling this relationship with Anna. He realizes that if he controls the dialogue about what it means to have the Visitors on Earth and whether it's a good thing or a bad thing, if he can prove that she needs him as much as he needs her, then he'll ultimately have the power that he actually craves. Whether he does the right thing with that power or not remains to be seen.
TVGuide.com: Should we suspect everyone of being a Visitor?
Wolf: Yes, part of the fun of the show is your schoolteacher, your waiter at a restaurant, your own cousin could be a Visitor. I think that underlying suspicion makes for a lot of fun.