The world of V in which he lives one is a dark and complex one. The origins of V are well know but the true identity of codename V is a mystery inside a puzzle inside a jigsaw box, wrapped in a conundrum, broken into a Chinese box. V lives in the mid '90's in a modern day police state version of Britain were it is a one party fascist state. The state has systems of security camera surveillance (CCT) and fascist thoughts and ideals toward those not White-Anglican. It is a brutal state to those of different race and creed and those who are weak. The fear of this government and their bent goal of total hegemonic power is what made V the man who he is.
Once the new Norsefire Party got elected into power there two main goals were: Total and absolute control over the state and the second was racial purification. They set there plans in motion to capture, torture, experiment on, and then kill those who are undesirables. These of course include the parties of Blacks, Jews, homosexual/lesbians and those who were political activists. These unfortunate undesirables fate would lead them to a concentration camp named Larkhill, V was one of them! Once these undesirables arrived to these camps they received terrible torture, abuse and ultimately death. Most of them were subjected to gruesome science and biological experiments.
The main staff was made up of Lewis Prothero: He was the Commander of "Larkhill". Bishop Anthony Lilliman: As the voice of the Party in the Church, Lilliman is a corrupt churchman given to paedophilia and embezzlement. Lilliman was a priest who was hired to give spiritual support to the prisoners being given Batch 5 drugs. Delia Surridge Larkhill camp doctor in charge of criminal medical experiments at the camp and who had studied V.
Many of the test subjects died but one of them did not die he experienced more mental and physical strength. Even though this patient gained mental capacity and strength he soon grew insane and forgot who he was. This patient was V or "the man in room five" as the staff dubbed him. V grew strong and insane from the medicine of Batch five which basically created V in many ways. The staff permitted V to grow flowers and fruits in the court garden and was allowed to keep the chemicals in his own cell, which mixed together with all the fertilizers in his cell made a power dynamite. On the night of November the fifth a terrible fire engulfed and destroyed the camp, one man rose from the ashes as a new man, V. V started the fire through his fertilizers in the his cell blowing the camp up sky high.
After the fire the party abandoned the camp and moved one with there other plans for domination while V disappeared not have appeared on their radars. When V escaped from the camp he was born a new man and vowed vengeance against all those from the camp who were apart of the experiments and transforming him. During the years V founded a underground layer called the Shadow Gallery in a old abandoned subway station where V had an large collection of books, paintings,music, and artifacts of different cultures that were rejected by the Norsefire party. V grew more intelligent and aware of many different political ideals while at the same time carrying out his vow of vengeance to those who harmed not just him but the thousands of other innocents. Over the years V killed many small time party members and guards who were part of the concentration camps to keep his identity secret and at the same time feeding his vendetta against them.
As V became a anarchist he became charismatic and very theatrical. Also some what of a demolition expert and pyro, V not only destroyed the lives of those who hurt him but the buildings that symbolize and represent the government. A man who respects and quotes many novels through his elaborate and theatrical vendetta. After all of V's killings through the years he has saved the most important and valuable party members for last for each of them he killed them in a ironic fashion of their careers and how they each created V. But V's most valuable, most important, and most precious target is the man who started it all: the leader of the Norsefire Party himself, Adam James Susan.
The Norsefire Party
The Norsefire is one of the most brutal and fascist political party other then the Nazi party. The Norsefire party is responsible for creating V and destroying the lives of thousands. The party was founded in the mid '80's by it's eventual leader Adam James Susan. The party set it's racial purification plans by dispatching thousands of undesirables to the Larkhill concentration camp where they were brutally killed and cremated. After that plan there next was total power and they seized it by launching a nuclear holocaust on most of the world. The US and the entire continent of Africa were virtually wiped as much of the world,even England suffered great damage to its agriculture.
After there plans were completed the party established an new government consisting of The Head. The Head was the head of the government the Eyes were surveillance cameras or closed circuit television. The Nose was the new police department the Finger was the Secret Police having men disguised on the streets to infiltrate rebellions. The Ear is monitoring sounds and phone calls to help with crime also with resistance. The Mouth is television propaganda to only show programs appropriate and approved by the party, as a tool of keeping the people under the Norsefire yolk. This fascist regime is very oppressive and aggressive in it's pursuit and political ideals.
This new government ensures total control and order also to squash any resistance at once. Keeping it's people submissive and on a tight leash and making sure there is no individualism or new ideals. All freedoms and liberates are considered luxuries that the government can't afford.
Evey Hammond is a sixteen year old girl who has fallen into the world of prostitution, one night she is caught and arrested by the governments Fingermen, but instead of taking her in they attempt to rape her, however before they can do anything V appears and saves her. V takes her back to his home in the centre of London where he tells her about himself and what his plans are to bring down the strict left wing government and its leader Adam Susan.
V’s next plan is to blow up the Old Bailey but before he does he has a talk with the Madam Justice statue, saying that she is no longer his justice and then blew up the Old Bailey with several bombs sending a message to the government that he means business and that change is coming to England.
V then targets 3 members party member who he has met in some before and have a history with him in some way, firstly he mentally tortures and drives insane Lewis Prothero, who is a highly respected broadcaster, V does this by destroying Prothero’s priceless collection of porcelain dolls, a collection which took years to build, he also dressed Prothero up in his old Commander uniform from when he worked in Larkhill (where V was held and experimented on) and over saw all the experiments. Bishop Antony Lilliman is a strong party member but he is also a paedophile, so to get the opportunity to take the Bishop out V asks for Evey’s help she agrees, She dresses up erotically to seduce the Bishop the plans works and when the two are alone, V works in and after a brief convocation V makes the Bishop drink holy water that has cyanide in it that kills him, Evey is shocked by this but V convinces her that he deserved to die. The last member on V’s hit list is a scientist called Delia Surridge, during V’s and Dr Surridge’s talk it is revelled that she was the one who is responsible for the experiments and the deaths of hundreds of people at the lab however she has been haunted by the events at the lab and is genially sorry for her actions so instead of a brutal death V simply gives her a lethal injection that is painless but still kills her. On his way out V is encountered by Derek Almond who was told by Detective Inspector Finch, who Dr. Surridge was sleeping with, to watch her home he quickly pulls his gun on V but he has no bullets in it so V quickly kills him.
A few hours later the government’s police arrive with Finch leading the search of his former lovers house, in Dr Surridge’s room they find her diary and up on reading it he finds out that all the member of staff that worked at Larkhill had died under suspicious circumstances and I believed that V had killed them all for revenge.
V didn't show his face for another 4 months, until decided to put the rest of his plan into motion he broke into one of the biggest broadcasting tower in London, he delivered a powerful message to English about managing their own lives and standing up for yourself. The Police arrive and in order to escape V dresses a man called Roger Dascombe, who is Adam Susan’s chief propaganda, in a replica of V’s suits and throws him out of the room and into the police’s sight who thinking he is V shoot and kill him letting V escape.
After an argument with V at his home Evey starts living on the streets again, she befriends a criminal called Gordon Deitrich, who is later killed by another criminal called Alistair Harper, Evey tries to avenge her friends death by killing Harper but when she finds Harper he is dealing with Peter Greedy so when she appears she is arrested for attempting to murder Greedy.
Evey is taken to a concentration camp where she is tortured about the whereabouts of V, she finds strength in letters she finds in her cell, the letters are from another prisoner named Valerie, who was arrested for being a lesbian. After torture and questioning her captures give her the choice of death or tell them where V is, she chooses to remain loyal to V and does not tell them, then to her surprise she is set free, it is revealed that V captured her that night when she tried to kill Harper and that he was the one that had been torturing her to make her stronger, Evey is very upset but finally comes round to what V had actually done for her.
V continues his assault on Adam Susan’s government by destroying the governments surveillance and communications systems, with no communication in the city London falls in to chaos and several riots break out with civilians fighting Creedy’s Fingermen, however V says this is only the beginning of the true chaos and anarchy that he is about to unleash. Meanwhile Finch finds himself at Larkhill where he realizes this must be where V was created, he also realizes that the only way V could destroy Parliament was from under ground so he sets off to try and stop V.
V meets Finch and after a long convocation V lets Finch shoot him, slowly bleeding to death Evey finds V and she holds him in her arms, instead of un-masking V she decides to follow through with his master plan, using a train under V’s home that V armed with explosives to blow up Parliament, she puts V’s dead body on the train so he can be there when his master plan comes to a end Guy Fawkes style. With all the main figure heads of the government dead England falls into more chaos until a new order takes charge that look to take England into a golden age of freedom and harmony. Evey takes up the mantle of V to make sure people like Adam Susan never come back into power, she also takes on a young Sergeant Dominic Stone as her eventual successor.
V is an expert marksman and has a passion for bladed weaponry. His preferred style of swordsmanship is fencing but, he primarily utilizes multiple daggers of identical design. He uses these daggers in a variety of ways; defensively, offensively, in either / both hands, in direct combat, thrown, and with / without the intent to kill. Regardless, he is an expert in unarmed combat again single and multiple targets. V is also highly adept in the use of large scale and small scale explosives & pyrotechnics. When necessary, he is known to use a variety of means to achieve his goals. These include hijacked audio PA systems, weaponized prescription drugs, the use of specified poisons, the filming & broadcasting of prerecorded video messages, laying & utilizing underground railway tracks as a delivery system, elaborate disguises, and everything from door sealants to batons as needed.
Due to side effects of a pituarin / pinearin compound called "Batch 5", vast cellular anomalies are believed to have increased V's natural abilities (i.e reflexes, reaction times, agility, strength, pain tolerance, mental processes) however the comic never out right states him being more than human. Chemical exposure may also account for his eccentrically theatrical manner. He is also a quick runner with athletic levels of endurance and stamina.
A master of deduction and personal profiling, V displays great skill in his ability to predict the responses of others. Through this skill he is able to position those around him in ways which leave them either secure, vulnerable, or acting in ways which benefit him without their knowledge. This includes creating opportunities to kill his targets or have others kill them (while believing it to be their own decision). His understanding of human nature is so distinct, he is able to recreate the situations, which caused his own personality to be reinforced through resiliency, in order to 'teach' Evey how to overcome her fears. In essence, her augmented her personality through conditioning to make her stronger.
No one knows what V really looks like , as any one who could possibly know were either killed by the government or by V himself. All that is shown in the comics is that he was white, before he apparently allowed his body to be scarred by burns in the explosion he started. This is V's greatest 'power'.
He becomes a symbol, representing the ideal of political revolution and anarchistic justice. With no personal identity, he has some difficulty in handling his emotions. His identity as a revolutionary anarchist is the dominating force of his psychology. He literally chooses to become the personification of the repressed beliefs of a repressed population. By appealing to the spirit of civil unrest within people while embodying that spirit, he connects with them. By committing his acts of justified terror, he boosts their confidence. By providing them all with costumes identical to his own, he binds them to his actions and to each other. In essence, he allows them to become the spirit of unrest . Since they appear in mass, and as each person is disguised the same way, everyone / no one can be linked to the various crimes being committed.
A government cannot declare all its people criminals as it is supposed to represent the common good of its citizens.
In similar fashion, V has created a anonymous champion of the people. The 'main V' becomes a legend and his persona is one that is able to be passed down and picked up by anyone who sees themselves as worthy (i.e. Zorro). After his passing, V's identity is taken up by Evey with the intent to pass it on to Dominic.
5 and V
There are numerous references throughout V for Vendetta (both potentially intentional or unintentional) to the number 5 and letter V, which is itself "5" in Roman numerals:
*When V is shot, he leaves a trail of blood on the wall as he falls; in the shape of a letter V.
*Valerie's letter has 5 pages.
*The title "V for Vendetta" contains 5 syllables.
*The title of each chapter begins with the letter V.
*The character V is seen reading and quoting from Thomas Pynchon's novel, V.
*In the film adaptation V is shot 5 times before killing Creedy
*Beethoven's fifth symphony is used in the book and noted for the prominent use of three short notes and one long, which is the Morse Code identifier for the letter V. This code was used as a call sign by the BBC during World War II, most famously in the sense of V for Victory.
*Evey's name is composed of "E" (the fifth letter of the alphabet), "V" (5 in Roman numerals, and the fifth letter from the end of the alphabet), and "Y" (25th letter of the alphabet, or 5 squared). The woman who dies in the cell next to that of V at Larkhill is named Valerie Page.
*In the original comic, V leaves a violet carson after he kills someone.
*The publisher is Vertigo - which begins with a V, although Vertigo only became the publisher through reprints and the work was published by Quality (originally) and DC (who reprinted and completed it after Quality cancelled the anthology the series was being told in)
*V is eventually identified as the prisoner from Room 5 at Larkhill Internment Camp. The five doors are labeled with Roman numerals, so Room 5 is emblazoned with a "V". The number 5, when converted to binary numerals, is 101 (a possible allusion to the infamous torture room 101 in George Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four, which has 5 syllables).
V's hideout is accessed from the closed Victoria tube station, the damaged sign of which resembles a sideways V when Finch locates it.
*V's personal motto consists of the Latin phrase Vi Veri Universum Vivus Vici (By the power of truth, I, while living, have conquered the universe), which in turn consists of five words that begin with the letter V ("U" is written as "V" in Latin). Aleister Crowley also used the phrase as one of his personal mottos, a fact that appears in Alan Moore's later book Promethea. But V mentions only the origin of the phrase in Faust.
*November is the only month in the Gregorian calendar with the letter V in it.
*As Evey appears to give her speech to the public after she has assumed the identity of V, the visual angle of the frame causes a V to be formed between the edges of the building she is standing on and the building behind her.
*The government consists of the five branches which are identified with the five senses
*At Larkhill, V is injected with Batch "5", or in Roman numerals, Batch "V"
*In the graphic novel, V prepares his revenge for 5 years, but this was changed to twenty years in the film version
*Evey's birthday is in September, so her zodiac sign is probably Virgo which starts with V.
*Guy Fawkes Day happens on November 5
*"Shadow Gallery", V's hideout, is five syllables
*When Evey asks what V is waiting on late in the book, he answers "I'm waiting for the man." The title of a Velvet Underground & Nico song
*Codename V's Last word, at the end of the novel, starts with a V.
*November the 5th or 5th of November has 5 syllables.
*V Kills 5 main characters in the film. (Bishop Lilliman, Delia Surdridge, Prothero, Creedy, and Adam J. Susan.) All but Creedy's name contain 5 syllables.
*Much of V's dialogue is in Iambic Pentameter.
In 2006 the V for Vendetta film was released. In the film Natalie Portman stars as Evey Hammond and Hugo Weaving delivers an outstanding performance as the legendary V.
Only a few changes were made to the film that differ from the original. An example of this is that, in the end, Evey never takes up the costumed identity of V. It could be assumed she does at a later time but, it is never implied. Likewise, there is no mention of Dominic or his selection as an heir apparent to the V mantle. V's original appearance is never mentioned and in the film, 'Batch 5' is confirmed as altering V's physical / mental abilities. Also Adam James Susan's name was changed to Adam Sutler.
The film was originally set to be released Friday, November 4, 2005 (a day before the 400th Guy Fawkes Night) but, was delayed to March 17, 2006 release due to the producers not wanting to be accused to exploiting terrorist activity in London in 2005.