By Jeff Jensen
Updated November 24, 2009 at 10:37 PM EST

Like my colleague Michael Ausiello, I am a big fan of the USC Trojans football team. Not that I attended the University of Southern California, but being both a football fan and a resident of NFL-absent Los Angeles, I’ve adopted Pete Carroll’s high flying team as my own. If you follow the college game, you know that USC has had an extremely disappointing season. There’s lots of promise and lots of talent there, both on the field and on the sidelines, but they’ve not only been unable to play up to their potential, but on occasion, they’ve played like total crap. Which brings me to ABC’s alien invasion drama V, which reminds me a lot of this year’s Trojans: lots of promise and lots of talent; disappointing results and an occasional outright crappiness. The big difference between USC and V is this: for all their problems, USC is actually doing well enough to earn an extension to its regular season—which is to say, it’s going to go to a bowl game. Alas, I’m not sure V will be suiting up again after tonight’s episode, the final outing of the year. Earlier this fall, ABC decided to launch the show in a pod of four episodes—a mini-series, like the original V, but more drawn out—and reportedly put off ordering more episodes until the network saw how this initial burst did in the ratings. The premiere got mixed-to-favorable reviews and impressive ratings, though since then, the quality has slipped along with the quantity of viewers. If you’ve been following my recaps, you know I’ve been quite harsh on the show–perhaps too harsh. In retrospect, I regret the severity of my judgment and my presumption about what the writers should or should not be doing. That said, V has disappointed me. I’m going to watch tonight with the hope that the show can throw a Hail Mary and redeem its troubled mini-season with a rousing victory. How about you? Will you be tuning in tonight? And if you have been tuning in. what have you liked and disliked about the episode so far, and what do you think the show needs to do to get better? Post your thoughts below—and come back tomorrow for my recap of the winter finale.

Photo Credit: Sergei Bachlakov/ABC