V for Vendetta

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V For Vendetta collected edition cover, art by David Lloyd

V For Vendetta collected edition cover, art by David Lloyd

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

V for Vendetta is a ten-issue comic book series written by Alan Moore and illustrated mostly by David Lloyd, set in a dystopian future United Kingdom imagined from the 1980s about the 1990s. A mysterious anarchist named "V" works to destroy the totalitarian government, profoundly affecting the people he encounters.

The series is set in a near-future Britain after a limited nuclear war, which has left much of the world destroyed. In this future, an extreme fascist party called Norsefire has arisen and is now the ruling power. "V", an anarchist revolutionary dressed in a Guy Fawkes mask, begins an elaborate, violent and theatrical campaign to bring down the government.

Plot

The 5th of November, 1997, London. The vigilante known as V rescues a young woman, Evey Hammond, from a gang of police agents — known as "Fingermen" — who are about to rape her after arresting her for prostitution. After dispatching the fingermen, V then takes her to his secret lair, which he calls "The Shadow Gallery". There, Evey tells V her life story, describing the nuclear war of the late 1980s that led to anomie, and then of the fascist coup d'état in which her father became a political prisoner. A new government under the name of the old has risen.Investigation of V's bombing is assigned to Eric Finch, head of "The Nose" (the name by which the regular police are commonly known) and an experienced investigator who serves the government out of a love of order rather than political conviction. Through him we meet other figures in the Party, including the Leader, Adam James Susan, a recluse who is fixated on the police state's computer system "Fate"; Commander Derek Almond, the leader of "The Finger", the secret police; Rose, Almond's emotionally and physically abused wife; Dominic Stone, Finch's partner; Conrad Heyer, head of "The Eye", the visual surveillance branch; Helen, Heyer's extremely ambitious and ruthless wife; Brian Etheridge, head of "The Ear", the audio surveillance branch; and Roger Dascombe, in charge of "The Mouth", the branch in charge of broadcasting propaganda.

V next blows up the Old Bailey after pretending that he and the Madame Justice statue on the Old Bailey are conversing (which begins with V politely saying hello to Justice, and ends with him giving her a present with a bomb in it and calling her a whore, saying he has met a new woman named Madame Anarchy), and confronts three Party figures to accuse them of past crimes: Lewis Prothero, the propaganda broadcaster who serves as the "Voice of Fate"; Bishop Anthony Lilliman, a pedophile who represents the Party in the clergy; and Delia Surridge, a seemingly apolitical doctor who had a personal relationship with Finch. V attacks each of them in an ironic fashion, derived from previous encounters. Prothero is driven to insanity after V destroys his collection of priceless dolls in a reproduced death camp oven while having Prothero dressed up in a Commander uniform (Prothero was Commander of Larkhill); Lilliman is killed by being forced to consume a cyanide-laced communion wafer just as he is about to rape Evey dressed up in a little girl costume (Lilliman was a priest who was hired to give spiritual support to camp prisoners taking the Batch 5 drug); and Dr. Surridge dies from a lethal injection (she was the doctor in charge of criminal medical experiments at the camp and who had studied V) - however, as she was the only worker at Larkhill that expressed remorse for her actions, the injection and her death are painless. Upon leaving Delia's home, V is surprised by Derek Almond, who was warned by Finch that V was after Surridge and tries to capture him. Unfortunately for Almond, he forgets to reload his gun after having cleaned it earlier that same night, and he is quickly killed by V.

Finch begins his research upon his discovery of Dr. Surridge's diary. It reveals that all three victims were officers at the Larkhill Resettlement Camp, and that over the previous years, every other staff member from the camp has died, apparently killed by V — the vendetta of the title. Finch later discovers that this apparent "vendetta" served as a diversion from the true cause of action. V, the only prisoner to have survived the death camp, chose to eliminate its surviving officers to prevent the government from discovering his true identity. It could also be said that they were killed as retribution for the prisoners' pain and death due to the Larkhill officers' adherence to the fascist administration. With no records of his real name or personage existing, V can operate covertly. All that is known to the reader is that he was subjected to medical experiments involving hormonal injections of a substance called "Batch 5," which presumably triggered V's transformation into an obsessive and brilliant (though possibly psychotic) avenger. Though "codename V"'s past and former identity remain a mystery, in Delia Surridge's flashbacks (while Finch is reading her diary to the leader), one picture shows the back of his head and reveals that he is white (Book 1, Chapter 11, the picture in the upper-right corner of page 81). Naturally, Finch only reads the diary and cannot see that, but the reader, having access to imagery, can see that Codename V is white.

Four months later (February 23, 1998), V breaks into Jordan Tower, the broadcast centre for the Party, to broadcast an anarchist speech that calls on the people to take charge of their own lives. He escapes by tying up Dascombe, placing a copy of V's own costume and mask on him, and standing him up in the control room where he is shot by police who storm the room. Eric Finch, in going over the crime scene, punches Peter Creedy, a petty criminal promoted to Head of the Finger after Almond's death, for a personal remark related to Delia Surridge (with whom he was romantically involved) and is sent by The Leader on a forced vacation.

Evey has developed a strong attachment to V, but he has begun to challenge her morality. After a confrontation in the Shadow Gallery, she finds herself abandoned on a street, unable to find V. She is taken in by Gordon Deitrich, a petty criminal with whom she becomes romantically involved, and they cross paths unknowingly with Derek Almond's widow Rose; after the deaths of her husband and Dascombe (with whom she had been forced by circumstances into having a relationship with), Rose is forced to work as a burlesque dancer, and consequently develops a strong hatred for the Party. Creedy begins organizing a private militia, hoping to use V's destabilization of the Party to mount a coup against the Leader. V, maintaining surveillance on all of these various factions, appears to be manipulating them against each other.

When Gordon is murdered by the Scottish gangster Alistair Harper, whom he was dealing with, Evey attempts to kill Harper in revenge but is seized, arrested, detained, and accused of attempting to murder Peter Creedy as he was meeting with Harper. In her cell, Evey finds a letter from a presumably dead former inmate named Valerie, an actress who was imprisoned for being a lesbian. Evey's interrogator tortures her multiple times and finally gives her a choice of collaboration or death; inspired by Valerie's courage and quiet defiance, she refuses to give in and is told that she is free. To her shock, Evey learns that her imprisonment was a hoax constructed by V, designed to put her through an ordeal similar to the one that shaped him. He reveals that Valerie was another Larkhill prisoner who died in the cell next to his; the letter that Evey read is the same one that Valerie had passed on to V to read. Evey's anger finally gives way to acceptance of her identity and freedom.

November 1998. V destroys the Party's communication and surveillance centres (housed in Jordan Tower and the Post Office Tower), causing the death of Etheridge, effectively shutting down both The Eye and The Ear and spurring a wave of wanton violence and hedonism which is violently suppressed by Creedy's street gangs. Meanwhile, V notes to Evey that this is not The Land of Do-As-You-Please end result he wants, but rather it's mere chaos in The Land of Take What You Want — an interim period that he intends to follow up with the establishment of true anarchy, a voluntarily orderly society. Finch's assistant Dominic realizes that V has had access to the Fate computer since the very beginning, explaining his foresight; this news accelerates the mental collapse of the Leader.

Finch travels to the abandoned site of Larkhill, on the Wiltshire Downs, where he takes LSD. His hallucinations lead him to an intuitive understanding of V, and returning to London, he deduces that V is hidden somewhere in Victoria Station, part of the abandoned London Underground, and goes to find him. V, who knows his time has come to an end, meets Finch and lets Finch shoot him. The bleeding V flees and dies in Evey's arms. Evey considers unmasking V, but decides not to learn his identity; instead, she assumes it, donning one of his spare costumes. Meanwhile, Rose Almond's private vendetta has led her to assassinate the Leader and she is last seen being taken by the Finger. In the ensuing chaos, Creedy's own men kill him, while Finch reports the news that V is dead. When Evey appears to the crowd as V, a general insurrection begins.

Evey completes V's final act of subversion. As requested by V, she performs the destruction of 10 Downing Street by giving her mentor a "Viking funeral" with an explosive-laden Underground carriage containing his body sent to detonate at the desired location. She rescues Dominic from the mob and takes him back to the Shadow Gallery, implying that she intends to train him as her successor, having vowed to help the people to create the society the original V dreamed of creating. Having removed the totalitarian old regime, there is no longer a need for destruction. Finch observes the chaos raging in the city before heading to the countryside. All forms of authority in Britain are now gone; its future is left uncertain. Thus, V has created chaos, which will allow voluntary order to occur. It is to be assumed that Evey will do her best to prevent another fascist government from arising from this order.

Characters

V

Hugo Weaving as V in the 2006 film adaptation Hugo Weaving as V in the 2006 film adaptation

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

* V: A romantic, anarchist revolutionary and classical Byronic hero, well-versed in the arts of explosives, subterfuge, computer cracking, and others; he also has a vast literary, cultural and philosophical intelligence. V is the only survivor of an experiment in which four dozen prisoners were given injections of a pituarin/pinearin compound called "Batch 5". The compound caused vast cellular anomalies that eventually killed all of the subjects except V, on whom many people believe granted him enhanced strength, reflexes, endurance, and pain tolerance. But there is no comment on this in the book. V maintains that he is just a man. Although Dr. Surridge believes V was driven insane by the injection, the possibility that feigning insanity to some degree was the first step in V's plan for freedom is left open. Throughout the novel V almost always wears his trademark Guy Fawkes mask, a shoulder-length wig of straight dark-brown hair, and an outfit consisting of black gloves, tunic, trousers and boots. When not wearing the mask, his face is not shown. When outside the Shadow Gallery, he completes this ensemble with a circa-1600's conical hat and floor-length cloak. His weapons of choice are foot-long Daggers that he wields and throws expertly, along with explosives and tear gas. He is supposed to have taken his name from the Roman numeral "V", the number of the room he was held in during the experiment. This is the main explanation of the origin of his name, as it is stated in the book. However, other theories may explain his nom de guerre. For instance there is a clear echo in his name of the rallying cry used by Winston Churchill in the struggle of the Allies in World War II to overcome the Axis fascist alliance: 'V for Victory!'. Here it is simply transformed into 'V for Vendetta'. It should also be noticed that the V within a circle is merely an upside-down anarchy sign without the slash marking an A symbol. At the end of the book, V lets Chief Inspector Eric Finch shoot him and V dies in Evey's arms. Evey then assumes V's identity and gives V himself a Viking funeral by placing V inside a bomb-laden train whose eventual destination is 10 Downing Street. V is the only character's whose dialog balloons look "distorted and twisted", instead of being perfectly oval, possibly to show that the mask distorts his voice. Whenever V quotes another author, the quote brackets (") are perfectly visible.

Originally Posted by

Nerull of the Wizards Community forums.

On this Thread

“People should not be afraid of their governments. Governments should be afraid of their people”

V : (Smart 4/charismatic 2/tough 4/fast 3/swashbuckler 7): CR 20; Medium humanoid; HD 6d6+12 plus 4d10+8 plus 10d8+20, hp 138, Mas 17; Init +4, Spd 40; Def 28 (+4 Dexterity, +14 class); BAB +13, Grap +15; Atk +18/+13 melee (1d4+7+[1d4],18-20 Knife [streetfighting]) or + 18/+13 ranged (1d4+7,18-20 Knife); FS/R 5 ft./5 ft.;AL Liberty, Justice, the people SV Fort +12, Ref +15 Will +6; AP 10, Rep +7; Strength 14, Dexterity 18, Constitution 14, Intelligence 14, Wisdom 10, Charisma 14.
Occupation: Creative (class skills: Bluff, Disguise, Spot)
Skills: Balance +10; Bluff +7; Climb +7; Craft: Chemical +10; Craft: Mechanical +6; Demolitions +13; Diplomacy +7; Disable Device +6; Disguise +12; Gather Information +7; Hide +14; Intimidate +13; Investigate +9; Jump +8; Knowledge: Art +6; Knowledge: Behavioural Sciences +6; Knowledge: Current Events +8; Knowledge: History +5; Knowledge: Physical Sciences +5; Knowledge: Popular Culture +5; Knowledge: Streetwise +6; Knowledge: Tactics +5; Knowledge: Theology and Philosophy +7; Listen + 5; Move Silently +13; Navigate +6; Perform: Dance +3; Research +8; Search +8; Sleight of Hand + 9; Spot +7; Tumble +17.
Feats: Agile Riposte; Archaic Weapons Proficiency; Armor Proficiency
(Light)
; Armor Proficiency (medium); Brawl; Combat Expertise; Dodge (+1 Dodge bonus versus selected opponent); Improved Damage Threshold; Improved Disarm; Mobility; Simple Weapons Proficiency; Spring Attack; Streetfighting; two Weapons Fighting; Weapon Finesse (knife);
Talents: Charm (+2 to Charisma skills vs females); Damage Reduction 1/-; Find the mark; Fire Resistance 2; greater weapon specialization (knife); Improved Increased Speed (10'); Plan (DC 10, bonus 6); Savant (Demolitions +4); Quick weapon draw (knife); Weapon Focus (Knife); Weapon Specialization (Knife);
Possessions: Guy Fawkes Costume & Mask, 8 (mastercraft +1 damage) knives, Smoke Grenades, Various antiquities.

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