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Terminal vs Blake
peladon
Anniew wrote:

Blake was one of the first episodes I saw and on the back of that I nearly didnt bother with the rest of the series when the tapes came up for sale, but I bought a few more and it was the Way Back,Project Avalon and Deliverance that drew me in.


I can see that, viewed coldly as a stand alone episode but I think you're ignoring the effect it had on those of us that had watched from the beginning, fully expecting, if not victory for Blakes7 that at least they'd escape to fight another day, and watching as one of their own destroyed that hope. It was a confirmation of the fear that had been growing that Avon was right all along ( he can't win. You know he can't win) but also that none of us could - that the system would always beat us. And made worse by the fact that the worm of corruption infected not just the way lives were governed but the personal relationships formed in such a regime. It was as depressing as hell. I have never got over the impact!


Agreed and one of the things I most disliked about Series D, and still do, is the nihilistic and defeatist tone of it, the Ďdonít both fighting corruption because you will always loseí subliminal message. But it was a fair reflection if what happened in Communist controlled states in the period of the Cold War, and in many other totalitarian states. Itís one reason why the earlier series of B7 remains relevant in so many ways despite its shoddy special effects.

As for that last episode Iím now of the view it was simply the product of four much simpler things, 1. The desire for a cliff hanger ending, 2, indulging the wish of an actor who wanted to be killed off, 3. Indulging another actor who liked western style fiction and finally 4. The generally poor plotting and editing of that last series.

The combination of these gives rise, I think, to the sense of a message that may well not be there. After all it would be most improper for a publicly funded body to intentionally send out such a message in a democracy.

The portrayal of the Federation in series D is barking anyway, as any look at history shows. Series C made it clear Ė right up to the end - that the Federation had met its predestined fate Ė destruction in a battle with an equal predator. The whole 'its expanding again, and fast' was pure froth, and it is the unnecessary nature of it that makes it so odd. Servalan's struggle to reclaim power and Avon search for safety would have served the purpose far better.

But if it was intended to be a cliff hanger, as I think it documented that it was, then there is no reason at all to believe that the intention was for them to be considered dead, or think that the series couldnít have continued.

Its great fun continuing it.Cool
 
Spaceship Dispatcher
The combination of these gives rise, I think, to the sense of a message that may well not be there. After all it would be most improper for a publicly funded body to intentionally send out such a message in a democracy.

Hmmm... I'm not sure about that one Peladon; the BBC wasn't quite so aversed to broadcasting subversive drama. Maybe allowing writers etc to challenge democracy was in itself perceived as democratic?
Reversing the polarity of the neutron flow. I bet that means something. It sounds great.

Blake's 7: Trojan Horse (s4 fanfic) - Blake's 7: Through the Needle's Eye (s2 fanfic)

Spaceship Dispatcher's fanfic site
 
Anniew

As for that last episode Iím now of the view it was simply the product of four much simpler things, 1. The desire for a cliff hanger ending, 2, indulging the wish of an actor who wanted to be killed off, 3. Indulging another actor who liked western style fiction and finally 4. The generally poor plotting and editing of that last series.

The combination of these gives rise, I think, to the sense of a message that may well not be there. After all it would be most improper for a publicly funded body to intentionally send out such a message in a democracy.

Two points here:

Communism in USSR - Putin's rise from its ashes. Not expansionist yet but may well become so. Agree Servalan's second coming as Sleer is poorly plotted and thought through but it can be made to make sense.
And the BBC represents the people not the Government when it's functioning best and therefore can be (and occasionally was) subversive.

More points:
1. The lesson from the show isn't that revolutions are impossible but that if you use the same methods as those you oppose you become like them.
All legends are, I suspect, unintended. Writers create and find to their surprise that what they have written intuitively provides the perfect metaphor or deepens what they have written. It doesn't matter what was originally intended - the ingredients are there to create a legend and to develop, extend or challenge it. The ending provided all those ingredients ( though I concur they were improperly mixed).
Just because I can't sing doesn't mean I won't.
 
peladon
Spaceship Dispatcher wrote:

The combination of these gives rise, I think, to the sense of a message that may well not be there. After all it would be most improper for a publicly funded body to intentionally send out such a message in a democracy.

Hmmm... I'm not sure about that one Peladon; the BBC wasn't quite so aversed to broadcasting subversive drama. Maybe allowing writers etc to challenge democracy was in itself perceived as democratic?


Agreed, and I expressed myself badly. It was the subliminal aspect that I meant would be improper. Doing it openly in an approriate drama in the relevant time slot - thats a quite different matter Sneaking it into a family friendly viewing entertainment program in a covert way would I believe be improper. There was some element of subversion in Sa/b but it was in a form that allowed for questioning rather than fostering an atmosphere of 'this is how it is'.
 
peladon
Anniew wrote:


As for that last episode Iím now of the view it was simply the product of four much simpler things, 1. The desire for a cliff hanger ending, 2, indulging the wish of an actor who wanted to be killed off, 3. Indulging another actor who liked western style fiction and finally 4. The generally poor plotting and editing of that last series.

The combination of these gives rise, I think, to the sense of a message that may well not be there. After all it would be most improper for a publicly funded body to intentionally send out such a message in a democracy.

Two points here:

Communism in USSR - Putin's rise from its ashes. Not expansionist yet but may well become so. Agree Servalan's second coming as Sleer is poorly plotted and thought through but it can be made to make sense.
And the BBC represents the people not the Government when it's functioning best and therefore can be (and occasionally was) subversive.#

More points:
1. The lesson from the show isn't that revolutions are impossible but that if you use the same methods as those you oppose you become like them.
All legends are, I suspect, unintended. Writers create and find to their surprise that what they have written intuitively provides the perfect metaphor or deepens what they have written. It doesn't matter what was originally intended - the ingredients are there to create a legend and to develop, extend or challenge it. The ending provided all those ingredients ( though I concur they were improperly mixed).



The cause of the fire was rather different in Russia, and they didnt lose most of their military power as a part of it. Thats really the point the Federation was built out of military power and held the same way. With that gone in a widespreead and destructive war, and given the vast distances of space, rebuilding to a point where they could begin to think about expanding would take a generation. As stated in Moloch if the Federation had been worth anything Servalan would not have gone to Sardos. Nor would she have needed to try the stunt in Deathwatch or been so desperate to have Liberator.

AS for the message re becoming like them - I agree but that was done in Sa/b without the message being 'dont try it'. I confess that I dont see anything in 'Blake' to create a legend of itself. Certainly viewing it as I did the response is B grade melodrama - unless your preference is for Bgrade melodrama thats not going to keep bringing you back..Cool
 
JustBrad
Anniew wrote:

...Agree Servalan's second coming as Sleer is poorly plotted and thought through but it can be made to make sense.


Keep in mind, Terminal was originally to be the end of the series. Therefore all loose ends are tied up: Blake is reported dead, Servalan apparently killed, and Libby destroyed. There was, apparently, very little time between notice of renewal and shooting. IIRC one cast member said he (she) heard about the renewal not from the BBC or an agent, but while watching the BBC.

That left little time for the writers to figure out how to get a ship, how to make it fast, how to give it a teleport, and how to bring Servalan back. Overall they did a good job, but the pressure on production must have been intense, even for B7.
 
Anniew
Ooh Peladon I have to confess that B grade melodrama is a guilty pleasure!
Just because I can't sing doesn't mean I won't.
 
peladon
Anniew wrote:

Ooh Peladon I have to confess that B grade melodrama is a guilty pleasure!


LOL then you would have enjoyed Blake irrespective of whether you had seen anything else of B7. Each to their own, and I will admit it is an irritant for me (I prefer the Tenant of Wildfell hall over ane Wuthering heights any day), but particularly following on from something that was not.
 
Travisina
peladon wrote:

I prefer the Tenant of Wildfell hall over ane Wuthering heights any day

I prefer pretty much anything over Wuthering Heights... I've lost count of the number of times I've started and given up on it - all those narrations within narrations within narrations, not to mention multiple generations of Heathcliffes and wotsisname, the wet one.
Twitter: @TravisinaB7
Tumblr: tumblr
There's no point being grown up if you can't be childish sometimes
 
sweevo
I hate period stories/dramas, period.
 
Ellen York
Spaceship Dispatcher wrote:

I'm with you Peladon; it's incredible to me the number of times I read or hear that Blake's 7 being a cult show with its own fandom was dependent on the last episode or scene. Would the previous 51 episodes really not have been worth remembering and celebrating if the characters has not died at the end? Would keen viewers really have not bothered to start any clubs to write about, share and discuss the show? Is the rest of the show valued so lightly that anyone would actually not bother with it if there wasn't a violent massacre in the last five minutes? I find the whole notion quite negative toward respecting and acknowledging the talents and efforts the cast and crew in creating the four years of episodes prior to Blake. It's a viewpoint that I still don't understand despite some years of trying.


I wonder if the perception that B7 is remembered for the last episode is more true among the general public than among fans. Didn't B7 recently make a list of "Top 10 memorable TV endings"? So the shocking ending may be the thing that stands out for a casual viewer, but not necessarily for a fan. But I'm a series A/B person, so I am probably biased.
 
Anniew
Ellen, ten minutes before the end I thought, " they haven't left much time to wrap this up and get them out safely. How on earth will they achieve it?" Then it was " oh my God no. Avon, don't do it. please don't ". Then it was "................" Then, " That was clever. I wonder if Avon was a traitor all along?" Then " Have to do the dishes. Come on. Pretend you're okay. It's only a TV programme." Then later, "sob". It was a huge shock.

I didn't re watch BECAUSE of the ending but more as you look at photos of loved ones to remind yourself of everything you loved when they lived. And perhaps in a strange way to avert the ending - to see where/ if it could have been different.

I'm part of this forum because I can relive memories of the show and make it continue in some way.
Terminal was a great episode and if the show had ended then, I'm sure I'd still be a fan, writing stories about their next adventures. But watching the painfully unpretty disintegration of Avon in season 4 and the fact that they died did rock my universe because your fantasy heroes did not become morally bankrupt and Did Not Die! And they did. It was like getting to the end of Lord of the Rings to find that Aragorn died, Frodo was killed by Sam and Gandalf became the new Saron. It wasn't the journey I'd thought I'd signed on for.
I can still feel the shock.
Just because I can't sing doesn't mean I won't.
 
littlesue
Anniew wrote:

Ellen, ten minutes before the end I thought, " they haven't left much time to wrap this up and get them out safely. How on earth will they achieve it?" Then it was " oh my God no. Avon, don't do it. please don't ". Then it was "................" Then, " That was clever. I wonder if Avon was a traitor all along?" Then " Have to do the dishes. Come on. Pretend you're okay. It's only a TV programme." Then later, "sob". It was a huge shock.

I didn't re watch BECAUSE of the ending but more as you look at photos of loved ones to remind yourself of everything you loved when they lived. And perhaps in a strange way to avert the ending - to see where/ if it could have been different.

I'm part of this forum because I can relive memories of the show and make it continue in some way.
Terminal was a great episode and if the show had ended then, I'm sure I'd still be a fan, writing stories about their next adventures. But watching the painfully unpretty disintegration of Avon in season 4 and the fact that they died did rock my universe because your fantasy heroes did not become morally bankrupt and Did Not Die! And they did. It was like getting to the end of Lord of the Rings to find that Aragorn died, Frodo was killed by Sam and Gandalf became the new Saron. It wasn't the journey I'd thought I'd signed on for.
I can still feel the shock.


Anniew...Uncle Vere pointed out in his replies to all of us who wrote in to the beeb, Radio Times etc....that there was no blood...only on Blake.......
so cue all those post Gauda Prime stories, including mine!
Cold.....you don't know the meaning of cold.
Cold is when you have ice on the INSIDE of the window!!!


sues stories http://sjlittle.w...
sues youtube channel http://www.youtub...e54/videos
sues book shelf https://www.media...ne%20Shelf
rebel run video http://www.youtub...prqS-XZtLo
Lara and Sue's Stories http://lectorisal....webs.com/
 
Anniew
Do you know it was a lot later that I realised that! I bought Aftermath ( which on re-reading isn't as bad as I remembered it) which I hated and so I consigned my heroes to their graves. Then I discovered Avon a Terrible Aspect, Fan Fic, YouTube and Horizon and discovered all you amazing fans who had kept the Federation at bay and the rebellion alive and allowed a glimmer of PGP hope to enter my thinking!
Just because I can't sing doesn't mean I won't.
 
trevor travis
peladon wrote:
The portrayal of the Federation in series D is barking anyway, as any look at history shows. Series C made it clear Ė right up to the end - that the Federation had met its predestined fate Ė destruction in a battle with an equal predator. The whole 'its expanding again, and fast' was pure froth, and it is the unnecessary nature of it that makes it so odd. Servalan's struggle to reclaim power and Avon search for safety would have served the purpose far better.


I think you've missed references from both "Ultraworld" and "Death-Watch":

AVON This has never been a transit lane for Federation ships. It's unlikely to be one now, wouldn't you say.
TARRANT At the rate Servalan's empire is expanding, anything's possible.

And then mutiple references to surrounding war fleets, empires, etc in "Death-Watch".

The Federation is already expanding once more by the end of Colin.
 
peladon
trevor travis wrote:

peladon wrote:
The portrayal of the Federation in series D is barking anyway, as any look at history shows. Series C made it clear Ė right up to the end - that the Federation had met its predestined fate Ė destruction in a battle with an equal predator. The whole 'its expanding again, and fast' was pure froth, and it is the unnecessary nature of it that makes it so odd. Servalan's struggle to reclaim power and Avon search for safety would have served the purpose far better.


I think you've missed references from both "Ultraworld" and "Death-Watch":

AVON This has never been a transit lane for Federation ships. It's unlikely to be one now, wouldn't you say.
TARRANT At the rate Servalan's empire is expanding, anything's possible.

And then mutiple references to surrounding war fleets, empires, etc in "Death-Watch".

The Federation is already expanding once more by the end of Colin.


Well you can pick your episodes to fit your preference of course given that the editing was so poor but I think that Moloch came after those and expanding might mean back into the Inner worlds. Also there is no surrounding fleet in Deathwatch (might be wrong) to my recollection, the Federation fleet is on manoeuvres outside the Teal Vandor systems as a little demonstration to bolster Servalan's safety. The point of her strategy in the episode is because she canít overpower them at their current strength and seeks to have them fight for real to a point where they are weak enough that she can undertake military action. All of Servalan's actions is consistent with a dying empire, which is consistent with human history and consistent with as many episodes as itís inconsistent with, so I'll stick with my reading of the situation and my comment that itís barking.
 
trevor travis
peladon wrote:

trevor travis wrote:

peladon wrote:
The portrayal of the Federation in series D is barking anyway, as any look at history shows. Series C made it clear Ė right up to the end - that the Federation had met its predestined fate Ė destruction in a battle with an equal predator. The whole 'its expanding again, and fast' was pure froth, and it is the unnecessary nature of it that makes it so odd. Servalan's struggle to reclaim power and Avon search for safety would have served the purpose far better.


I think you've missed references from both "Ultraworld" and "Death-Watch":

AVON This has never been a transit lane for Federation ships. It's unlikely to be one now, wouldn't you say.
TARRANT At the rate Servalan's empire is expanding, anything's possible.

And then mutiple references to surrounding war fleets, empires, etc in "Death-Watch".

The Federation is already expanding once more by the end of Colin.


Well you can pick your episodes to fit your preference of course given that the editing was so poor but I think that Moloch came after those and expanding might mean back into the Inner worlds. Also there is no surrounding fleet in Deathwatch (might be wrong) to my recollection, the Federation fleet is on manoeuvres outside the Teal Vandor systems as a little demonstration to bolster Servalan's safety. The point of her strategy in the episode is because she canít overpower them at their current strength and seeks to have them fight for real to a point where they are weak enough that she can undertake military action. All of Servalan's actions is consistent with a dying empire, which is consistent with human history and consistent with as many episodes as itís inconsistent with, so I'll stick with my reading of the situation and my comment that itís barking.


Er, no... "Death-Watch" definitely comes after "Moloch" Wink

AVON Do they know that your battle fleet is massed on their borders?
SERVALAN Routine maneuvers. And a small demonstration of concern for my personal safety, which both sides understand and accept.

That's the 'explanation' given by Servalan, but Avon sees right through it, and knows why that battle fleet is there - to move in as soon as Teal/Vandor declare war.

The Federation is expanding again by the end of Colin - it takes more than one single war to defeat a dictatorship that strong. Human history has shown time-and-time again, with Germany and Russia being recent examples of the last century, that a great power will always rise again.

From "Ultraworld" onwards, the Federation is on the up again.
 
mrsbookmark
I'm voting for Blake.
And at the risk of coming across as weird, actually, I always thought ending with Star One at the end of Series B would have worked for me. I just really felt like the Blake/Avon animosity had come full circle. and needed the full circle feeling in Blake.
 
sweevo
Ending at Star One would probably have made it even MORE daring for the reasons you stated, mrsbookmark - and it would have brought the series to an ironic close (Blake starts the show fighting against the Federation and would have ended the series supporting them).
 
peladon
Ellen York wrote:

Spaceship Dispatcher wrote:

I'm with you Peladon; it's incredible to me the number of times I read or hear that Blake's 7 being a cult show with its own fandom was dependent on the last episode or scene. Would the previous 51 episodes really not have been worth remembering and celebrating if the characters has not died at the end? Would keen viewers really have not bothered to start any clubs to write about, share and discuss the show? Is the rest of the show valued so lightly that anyone would actually not bother with it if there wasn't a violent massacre in the last five minutes? I find the whole notion quite negative toward respecting and acknowledging the talents and efforts the cast and crew in creating the four years of episodes prior to Blake. It's a viewpoint that I still don't understand despite some years of trying.


I wonder if the perception that B7 is remembered for the last episode is more true among the general public than among fans. Didn't B7 recently make a list of "Top 10 memorable TV endings"? So the shocking ending may be the thing that stands out for a casual viewer, but not necessarily for a fan. But I'm a series A/B person, so I am probably biased.


It also made top 10 sci fi series in another of the same set of polls - without any reference to the ending. So its not really an indication. If I had to guess what non fans most remember it would be the rebel angle, the ship and the bickering between the charactersCool
 
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