V for Vendetta by Alan Moore

From plot debriefs to key motifs, Thug Notes’ V for Vendetta Summary & Analysis has you covered with themes, symbols, important quotes, and more.

V for Vendetta (1988) | Written by: Alan Moore

V for Vendetta
Thug Notes Summary & Analysis

Whatup my bruthas and sistas? This week we vowin to vanquish the villainous voice of the oppressor by venerating V for Vendetta by Alan Moore.

It’s November 5th 1997 and it sho’ do suck to live in England. In the late 1980s an all-out nuclear war busted out, people started gettin’ scurred like they do, and voted in a fascist government full or racist-ass honkies called Norsefire. Ever since then, the government got errybody by the balls.

Peep 16 year old Evey Hammond, fo’ instance. Girl so cashed out dat she gotta turn tricks on the street just to get by. One night, some secret po-lice cats called “The Finger” start gettin’ rough with Evey and even bout to ghost a girl when BAM- a badass mutha rockin’ a Guy Fawkes mask jumps dem bitches and saves Evie. This true blue anarchist go by the name of V- and he keep it 100 erry day plottin to burn NorseFire to the GROUND. How real do he keep it? Well, after saving Evie, he blow up the Parliament building like he don’t give a FUCK. Then, he take her back to his Batcave, called The Shadow Galley.

Meanwhile, there be this old school detective name Finch who tryna bring the heat down on V. Dude got all the government big-wigs in his posse- including the top dawg himself-Adam Susan, who spend most of his time chillin’ with “Fate”- a computer that pretty much controls errything.

Apparently, V been HUSTLIN’ lately- mercin’ haters left n’ right: a paedo peacher-man named Lilliman, some radio jockey asshole named Prothero, and a doc named Surridge. Finch eventually realize that all these homies connected- they all used to work at a government “resettlement camp” called Larkhill where peeps got experimented on and tortured. V was one of the victims- he supposedly had a psychotic breakdown, busted shit up, and bounced on outta there. Now it looks like brutha is on a gnarly revenge grind.

Months later, V busts in to the propaganda building head up by a shyster named Dascombe, and broadcasts a message to erryone preachin that things gotta CHANGE, and they ain’t gonna unless people step up and buck the system. V pulls some sick moves escaping from the building, and Dascomb gets capped in the process.

Meanwhile, things might be lookin’ up for Evie- fo’ a little while, at least. Evie left the Shadow Gallery and is shackin’ up with this old dude name Gordon. But when her boy toy gets shanked, Evey gets fed up with this shitty world and try to strap up and serve up some street justice. But befo’ she do, girl gets GOT and thrown in the can.

While she wastin away in her solo cell, Evey finds some letters written by Valerie Page, an actress who got locked up, tortured, and eventually killed for being gay. Val went out like a real G, tho. She kept showin’ da world love and refused to give in. Evey reads dat letter over and over. Evie’s captors roll in and tell her to cooperate or die. But Evie wanna keep it clutch like Valerie did, and tells ’em where to stick it.

Thinkin she bout to get glocked, she surprised as fuck when somebody roll up and be like “You FREE girl!” Huh? Turns out dis whole prison-torture scenario was a big play put on by V who was tryna set Evey free from fear, which is da REAL prison that been keepin her down her whole life.

Anyway, while she was gone, V did some next-level hackin- fool busted in to the Fate computer system and been usin it to play mind games with Adam Susan, makin’ him slowly lose his damn mind. After a while, Finch’s boy Dominic figgers out da reason V able to ball so hard is cuz he hooked up to the fate computer.

On the next 5th of November, V goes HAM and blows da hell outta a bunch mo’ government buildings, and shit gettin’ closer to a full on revolution in da streets.

It’s gettin’ real, and Finch gotta find V and put his ass in check. Fast. So how’s he gonna find him? By dropping acid at Larkhill, and trippin BALLZ til he can see inside V’s head. DUH! Well turns out, it works- Finch’s eys open wide and he realize dat da only person or thing that can keep you down in yo’self. Then he finds V’s secret swag pad and fills him full of lead. But V survives for two reasons 1. Cuz ideas are bulletproof and 2. Cuz V’s secret identity is 50 CENT!! Naw, I’m just playin. But he still FUCKED up and eventually dies in Evey’s arms. His last words are: “You must discover whose face lies behind this mask, but you must never know my face.”

V ain’t the only hustla lyin’ in dirt tho. Adam Susan gets one in the dome, and da whole damn city start tearin’ itself apart. Afta’ some deep-ass soul searchin’, Evey figgers out V’s last riddle, and slaps dat mask on her own face. Then she tell dem angry mobs: “Look, y’all. We ain’t done. The world is yours now, and we best rebuild. Don’t fuck it up.” On her way back to the Batcave, she picks up Dominic, who bout to get his ass whooped. After dat, Evey blows up da government’s main crib on Downing Street, and V’s body with it. The graphic novel ends with Finch rollin’ solo outta da city, and da implication that Evey gonna train Dom to be the next V. Can’t kill an idea…. Amirite?

Analysis

Even though dis graphic novel called V for “Vendetta,” dat V stand fo’ way mo’ than dat. Cept fo’ definite and indefinite articles, erry chapter title start with the letter V. V’s got da name-game on lock too: V, Evey, Velierie, Victoria Station. Plus, da latter V looks like the Roman numeral 5, reppin not only dat V was in Room 5 up at Larkhill, but also gives a lil nod to the FIFTH of November.

This OG is straight gangsta fo’ mo’ than just his alliterative and repetitive flow: V got mad style when he up on dat vengeance grind. When he roll up on the people dat did him dirty back at Larkhill, he don’t jus’ slap em up. He gives em a taste of they own medicine. Dude dehumanizes Prothero drivin’ his ass mad, kills Lilliman all church-style like it’s eucharist time, and uses a syringe to kill surridge, who was slangin one of dem thangs to experiment on peeps.

V’s Vendetta ain’t just ’bout stickin it to da people who fucked his shit up at Larkhill, but also burnin’ down da the ideology dat created such a twisted-ass place, and such a messed up society. In da face of a system dat got so much power dat errybody’s balls pretty much in a vice, V start preachin da opposite of authority: anarchy. Like V say:
“Authority allows two roles. The torturer and the tortured; twists people into joyless mannequins that fear and hate, while culture plunges into the abyss.”

But to V, anarchy don’t mean “no order,” it just means no leaders- instead, ERRYBODY runs da show. It’s bout YOU callin’ yo own shots, showin’ da world love, and refusin’ to give up what nobody cain’t take from ya: yo integrity.

Like Evie learn from Valierie’s letter up in dat cell, even though yo integrity is just a small thing, it’s the difference between being free and bein’ broken.
“It was my integrity that was important. Is that so selfish? It sells for so little, but it’s all we have left in this place. It is the very last inch of us…but within that inch we are free.”

Now one of the tightest thing bout this book is dat da relationship between Evie and V ain’t yo regular damsel in distress bullshit. It’s hella complex, which we peepin’ in da first pages of da text. We got panels juxtaposed showing em doin da same things- like Evie puttin on a dress while V puttin on his OJ gloves, and both of them lookin at they similar reflections in the mirror- cuz not only are they bound by an idea, but it foreshadowin how she gonna eventually take up da mask. V even say:
“Anarchy wears two faces, both creator and destroyer. Thus destroyers topple empires, make a canvas of clean rubble where creators then can build a better world.”

But dat ain’t to say V is all good fo’ Evie. If you get all biblical up in this hizzouse, you can peep day Evie’s name similar to Eve, and let’s not forget da dictator’s name is ADAM Susan. And how did Adam and Eve get their shit wrecked and their world turned upside down? By bein tempted by the devil! Mo’ than once, V is actually compared to, or compares himself to, the devil:
“I am the devil, and I come to do the devil’s work.”

So with all this killin and blowin’ shit up, how is V any different from the people he hatin’ on? A lotta people put V in the same crew with other do-gooder “superheros” like Green Lantern (show white one) NO NOT THAT ONE (show black one) MY MAN!

But truth is, callin V good or bad is just too simple. Matta’ fact, V often associated with Adam Susan. We got panels juxtaposing images of Susan talkin to da Fate Computer with V addressing fine-ass Madame Justice. Man, even their deaths play out similarly- both get popped, and pretty much at the same time. If you ain’t convinced yet, check how similar this shit is-

Susan actually give us the lowdown on why he do what he do and says :
“The only freedom left to my people is the freedom to starve. The freedom to die, the freedom to live in a world of chaos. Should I allow them that freedom? I think not. I think not.”

And when Evey tryna figger out why V tortured her and put her in a fake prison, he say: ‘Because I love you. Because I want to set you free.”

Both of deez playa do some HARDCORE shit to protect othas. Sayin dat V was a good dude or a bad dude is just too simplistic. Yeah, V was an idea- but he was also a human being, which means we cain’t just slap a label on him. Like V himself say, we all got somethin’ special goin on inside us:

“Everybody is special. Everybody. Everybody is a hero, a lover, a fool, a villain. Everybody…Everybody has their story to tell.” (1.3.26)

More Videos

The Glass Menagerie <br />by Tennessee Williams

The Glass Menagerie
by Tennessee Williams

Emma <br />by Jane Austen

Emma
by Jane Austen

IT <br />by Stephen King

IT
by Stephen King

Best Mo’ Money, Mo’ Problems Stories in Lit

Best Mo’ Money, Mo’ Problems Stories in Lit

Ready Player One <br />by Ernest Cline

Ready Player One
by Ernest Cline

Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde <br />by Robert Louis Stevenson

Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde
by Robert Louis Stevenson

Dr. Seuss’s Horton Hears A Who! <br />by Maurice Sendak

Dr. Seuss’s Horton Hears A Who!
by Maurice Sendak

Where the Wild Things Are <br />by Maurice Sendak

Where the Wild Things Are
by Maurice Sendak

One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest <br />by Ken Kesey

One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest
by Ken Kesey

The Merchant of Venice <br />by William Shakespeare

The Merchant of Venice
by William Shakespeare

The Trial <br />by Franz Kafka

The Trial
by Franz Kafka

Madame Bovary <br />by Gustave Flaubert

Madame Bovary
by Gustave Flaubert

The Epic of Gilgamesh

The Epic of Gilgamesh

The Fall of the House of Usher <br />by Edgar Allan Poe

The Fall of the House of Usher
by Edgar Allan Poe

A Wrinkle in Time <br />by Madeleine L’Engle

A Wrinkle in Time
by Madeleine L’Engle

Fight Club <br />by Chuck Palahniuk

Fight Club
by Chuck Palahniuk

The Cask of Amontillado <br />by Edgar Allan Poe

The Cask of Amontillado
by Edgar Allan Poe

American Psycho <br />by Bret Easton Ellis

American Psycho
by Bret Easton Ellis

The Fountainhead <br />by Ayn Rand

The Fountainhead
by Ayn Rand

Where the Red Fern Grows <br />by Wilson Rawls

Where the Red Fern Grows
by Wilson Rawls

Life of Pi <br />by Yann Martel

Life of Pi
by Yann Martel

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy <br />by Douglas Adams

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy
by Douglas Adams

Les Misérables <br />by Victor Hugo

Les Misérables
by Victor Hugo

No Country for Old Men <br />by Cormac McCarthy

No Country for Old Men
by Cormac McCarthy

The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe <br />by C.S. Lewis

The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe
by C.S. Lewis

Don Quixote <br />by Miguel de Cervantes

Don Quixote
by Miguel de Cervantes

V for Vendetta <br />by Alan Moore

V for Vendetta
by Alan Moore

The Fellowship of the Ring <br />by J. R. R. Tolkein

The Fellowship of the Ring
by J. R. R. Tolkein

Ender’s Game <br />by Orson Scott Card

Ender’s Game
by Orson Scott Card

Doctor Faustus <br />by Christopher Marlowe

Doctor Faustus
by Christopher Marlowe

Go Set A Watchman <br />by Harper Lee

Go Set A Watchman
by Harper Lee

The Outsiders <br />by S.E. Hinton

The Outsiders
by S.E. Hinton

The Goldfinch <br />by Donna Tartt

The Goldfinch
by Donna Tartt

A Midsummer Night’s Dream <br />by William Shakespeare

A Midsummer Night’s Dream
by William Shakespeare

A Game of Thrones <br />by George R. R. Martin

A Game of Thrones
by George R. R. Martin

King Lear by William Shakespeare

King Lear by William Shakespeare

Watchmen by Alan Moore

Watchmen by Alan Moore

The Cat in the Hat by Dr. Seuss

The Cat in the Hat by Dr. Seuss

Gone Girl <br> written by Gillian Flynn

Gone Girl
written by Gillian Flynn

The Handmaid’s Tale<br>by Margaret Atwood

The Handmaid’s Tale
by Margaret Atwood

Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse

Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse

Alice in Wonderland<br>by Lewis Carroll

Alice in Wonderland
by Lewis Carroll

Fifty Shades of Grey <br> by E.L. James

Fifty Shades of Grey
by E.L. James

The Tell-Tale Heart <br>by Edgar Allan Poe

The Tell-Tale Heart
by Edgar Allan Poe

The Color Purple <br> by Alice Walker

The Color Purple
by Alice Walker

Beloved by Toni Morrison

Beloved by Toni Morrison

A Raisin in the Sun <br> by Lorraine Hansberry

A Raisin in the Sun
by Lorraine Hansberry

A Tale of Two Cities <br> by Charles Dickens

A Tale of Two Cities
by Charles Dickens

The Raven <br> by Edgar Allan Poe

The Raven
by Edgar Allan Poe

A Christmas Carol <br> by Charles Dickens

A Christmas Carol
by Charles Dickens

Othello <br> by William Shakespeare

Othello
by William Shakespeare

Death of a Salesman <br> by Arthur Miller

Death of a Salesman
by Arthur Miller

A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess

A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess

Julius Caesar by Shakespeare

Julius Caesar by Shakespeare

Dracula by Bram Stoker

Dracula by Bram Stoker

One Hundred Years of Solitude <br> by Gabriel García Márquez

One Hundred Years of Solitude
by Gabriel García Márquez

The Metamorphosis <br> by Franz Kafka

The Metamorphosis
by Franz Kafka

The Hunger Games<br>by Suzanne Collins

The Hunger Games
by Suzanne Collins

The Giver by Lois Lowry

The Giver by Lois Lowry

At The Mountains of Madness<br>by H. P. Lovecraft

At The Mountains of Madness
by H. P. Lovecraft

Dune by Frank Herbert

Dune by Frank Herbert

The Dark Knight / The Grand Inquisitor – Special Episode

The Dark Knight / The Grand Inquisitor – Special Episode

The Brothers Karamazov <br> by Fyodor Dostoyevsky

The Brothers Karamazov
by Fyodor Dostoyevsky

The Grapes of Wrath<br>by John Steinbeck

The Grapes of Wrath
by John Steinbeck

The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas

The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas

The Old Man and the Sea<br>by Ernest Hemingway

The Old Man and the Sea
by Ernest Hemingway

The Stranger by Albert Camus

The Stranger by Albert Camus

A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man by James Joyce

A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man by James Joyce

The Sound and the Fury<br>by William Faulkner

The Sound and the Fury
by William Faulkner

Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain

Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain

Ethan Frome <br> by Edith Wharton

Ethan Frome
by Edith Wharton

Catch-22 by Joseph Heller

Catch-22 by Joseph Heller

Grendel by John Gardner

Grendel by John Gardner

Things Fall Apart<br>by Chinua Achebe

Things Fall Apart
by Chinua Achebe

Slaughterhouse-Five<br>by Kurt Vonnegut

Slaughterhouse-Five
by Kurt Vonnegut

A Separate Peace <br> by John Knowles

A Separate Peace
by John Knowles

Oedipus The King by Sophocles

Oedipus The King by Sophocles

All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque

All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque

Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov

Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov

The Picture of Dorian Gray <br> by Oscar Wilde

The Picture of Dorian Gray
by Oscar Wilde

Wuthering Heights<br>by Emily Brontë

Wuthering Heights
by Emily Brontë

Romeo and Juliet <br> by William Shakespeare

Romeo and Juliet
by William Shakespeare

Notes from Underground<br>by Fyodor Dostoevsky

Notes from Underground
by Fyodor Dostoevsky

Invisible Man <br> by Ralph Ellison

Invisible Man
by Ralph Ellison

The Sun Also Rises<br>by Ernest Hemingway

The Sun Also Rises
by Ernest Hemingway

The Crucible by Arthur Miller

The Crucible by Arthur Miller

Dante’s Inferno

Dante’s Inferno

Macbeth by William Shakespeare

Macbeth by William Shakespeare

Heart of Darkness <br> by Joseph Conrad

Heart of Darkness
by Joseph Conrad

Frankenstein <br> by Mary Shelley

Frankenstein
by Mary Shelley

The Scarlet Letter<br>by Nathaniel Hawthorne

The Scarlet Letter
by Nathaniel Hawthorne

Homer’s Odyssey

Homer’s Odyssey

Moby Dick by Herman Melville

Moby Dick by Herman Melville

Animal Farm <br> by George Orwell

Animal Farm
by George Orwell

Beowulf

Beowulf

Brave New World <br> by Aldous Huxley

Brave New World
by Aldous Huxley

Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck

Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck

The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien

The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien

Hamlet <br> by William Shakespeare

Hamlet
by William Shakespeare

Jane Eyre <br> by Charlotte Brontë

Jane Eyre
by Charlotte Brontë

The Catcher in the Rye<br> by J.D. Salinger

The Catcher in the Rye
by J.D. Salinger

Great Expectations <br> by Charles Dickens

Great Expectations
by Charles Dickens

Lord of the Flies<br>by William Golding

Lord of the Flies
by William Golding

Pride and Prejudice <br> by Jane Austen

Pride and Prejudice
by Jane Austen

1984 (Nineteen Eighty-Four)<br> by George Orwell

1984 (Nineteen Eighty-Four)
by George Orwell

To Kill a Mockingbird <br> By Harper Lee

To Kill a Mockingbird
By Harper Lee

The Great Gatsby <br> by F. Scott Fitzgerald

The Great Gatsby
by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Crime and Punishment<br> by Fyodor Dostoyevsky

Crime and Punishment
by Fyodor Dostoyevsky