When will we Earthlings ever learn? Whenever an alien and a spaceship pop up, it’s never good news. And when 29 spaceships suddenly appear, hovering over capitals of the world, we’re all taken aback before those sweet-talking aliens start making grand promises.
This is the structure of the new sci-fi series “V” (premiering 7 p.m. Tuesday on ABC) — the sole letter standing for “Visitors,” the phrase humans use to identify these outsiders.
All these tricky devils want is to get a few “resources” to help them get by and, in exchange, they’ll share their advanced technology with us. Sounds good, huh?
FBI agent Erica Evans (Elizabeth Mitchell) isn’t buying their declarations, though her mischievous teenage son is. She launches a secret investigation into what’s going on.
Meanwhile, dashing TV newsman Chad Decker (Scott Wolf), a career-hungry news anchor, is seduced, professionally speaking, by the alien leader known merely as Anna (Morena Baccarin), who gives his career a boost.
The aliens coming also make life uneasy for Ryan Nichols (Morris Chestnut), who has a secret he has to expose.
Based on a 1980s miniseries, “V” is very “Lost”-like, with huge mysteries and characters that are disconnected. But unlike other attempts by ABC to find a new “Lost”-like hit, “V” is singularly focused on one agenda with its plot.
With a compelling story and a nice twist, this is one network sci-fi series filled with promise.
Other highlights of the week of Nov. 1-7:
“Styl’d” (10 p.m. MTV). Five junior stylists try to keep from pulling their hair out when they get a chance to work for a big-time agency.
“Sex Rehab with Dr. Drew” (10 p.m. VH1). Between 3 to 6 percent of Americans are known to be addicted to sex, and Dr. Drew has found them for his new reality show.
“Poliwood” (7:30 p.m. Showtime). This documentary looks at how Washington politics and Hollywood aren’t such strange bedfellows.
“Tabatha’s Salon Makeover” (10 p.m. Bravo). A second season begins with Tabatha Coffey helping to transform shabby salon businesses into chic form.
“Strange Sex” (10 p.m. Discovery Health). Sleeping with someone but you can’t remember it? Well, this documentary says you’re sick.
“The Real Housewives of Orange County” (10 p.m. Bravo). As the fifth season begins, an original housewife leaves as another one is introduced. Plus, the turn of the economy is starting to hit even the pampered housewives.
“Spongebob Squarepants” (8 p.m. Nickelodeon). To honor the cartoon’s 10th anniversary, celebrity guests such as Robin Williams and Triumph the Insult Dog pay their respects.
“Saturday Night Fights Live” (7 p.m. CBS). Mix martial arts champs Fedor Emelianenko and Brett Rogers face off.
“The Wanda Sykes Show” (10 p.m. Fox). The sassy comic enters the talk show arena as the host.