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Blake's 7: Mission To Destiny

Episode seven is unexpectedly exciting from the offset, as it guest stars Brian Capron. Mr Hopwood! From Grange Hill! Mr Hopwood! Mr Hopwood spouting science fiction nonsense, no less. He gets his brain beaten out two seconds after the episode starts, but still. Briefly, that was Mr Hopwood from Grange Hill. Join me in my excitement.

The gang find poor Mr Hopwood's spaceship, which seems to be filled to brimming with anaesthetised passengers. No fair that they get to only be unconscious, when Mr Hopwood just got his skull splattered all over the dashboard. He still gets to be cool when he's dead though, as he's written a dying message in blood. Awesome! Anyway, the ship's full of technician types, who are heading back to their planet with a shiny green test tube that will save their planet from certain destruction. Somebody's a murderer, the ship's controls have been sabotaged, and there's a race against time to get the shiny green whatsit back to wherever before terminal nastiness ensues. Blake offers to zap off back to somewhere with the magic cure, while Avon and Cally stay behind to fix the spaceship. This mostly involves Avon talking a lot.

Not the best episode ever, this one. It has a central flaw of logic that doesn't help the story any, and the plot advances pretty annoyingly slowly. Half the guest stars behave like chunks of wood, and while Avon and Cally are busy endlessly theorising about what's happening, the rest of the Liberator crew are off on their mission of mercy, which just involves dodging asteroids. Then turning around and dodging asteroids in the other direction. It's a dull, dull episode, is what I'm saying.

Here are some pictures of dull things. And Brian Capron.


Mr Hopwood!


Very lovely Liberator model. The model work is getting better with every episode.


Very lovely Liberator model approaches Mr Hopwood's ship. Too late to save Mr Hopwood, sadly.


Cally looks over Mr Hopwood's (presumably now rather splattery) dashboard. I love it. All spaceships ought to look like that inside.


A female member of the crew encounters the dead body of the future Mr Hopwood, and reacts in the traditional manner.


Blake takes over, organises general meetings and repair crews, and basically is his usual presumptiously bossy self. He has this unshakeable certainty that the entire galaxy wants to be ordered around by him. Here he's building his right to rule on the fact that he and the other Liberator-ites are the only people present who can be trusted, as they're the only people who weren't on board when poor Mr Hopwood copped it, and therefore can't be suspected of anything. That's just not true, though. The entire crew were asleep. Blake and co could have beamed aboard any time, and done what they damned well pleased. Nobody seems to realise this.


The shiny green test tube. It's the most precious thing in the galaxy. Apparently.


Blake prepares to zap back aboard the Liberator with the box (supposedly) containing the priceless green shiny. Unfortunately, despite the entire crew being under suspicion of wanting to steal it, the captain thinks it a good idea to send one of them to fetch the box. Alone. And nobody bothers to check that it's still in the box before Blake leaves with it. Nobody thought it a good idea to all go to fetch it together, just to be on the safe side. And why, having said earlier that he was the only person able to get it out of the safe, does the captain send somebody to get it out of the safe for him? Using what, magic? Also, given that everybody is worried Blake will steal it instead, nobody suggests that maybe one of them ought to go with him, to make sure that he doesn't. It's like a giant deluge of stupid. And to think these people are their planet's last hope.


Blake and co encounter asteroids. For some reason - boredom, quite possibly - Zen identifies them as meteorites. A little later, in a desperate attempt to drum up some excitement, the Liberator's shields run out of power partway through them. Death is imminent! Except it's not. And then they realise that they've got an empty box, rather than a nice box of shiny green world-saving test tube. So they turn around and go straight back through the asteroids, even though their shields just ran out.


In another attempt to drum up some excitement, the Liberator crew watch as another ship approaches Mr Hopwood's. The murderer has allies, who are coming to gain possession of the Tube Of Green Shiny. Oh no! Except the fact that the crew were anaesthetised rather than killed suggests that they're not especially dangerous. And Zen has already explained that they'll be within teleport range before the two ships meet anyway. Which rather killed the excitement before it began. Not that it was really in any danger of beginning anyway. I think this episode's immune.


With everybody safe aboard the Liberator, Mr Hopwood's ship explodes. Blake explains that this is because he rigged it to do so when the approaching ship docked. He's just killed who knows how many people, for... what exactly? Judge, jury and executioner, all in a matter he knows nothing about. It's not like they would have been a threat to the Liberator, which has already been proven able to out-run and out-shoot everything else in the galaxy. What the hell, Blake?!

So, yeah. Not my favourite episode, but I suppose it is a good reminder of what a total bastard Blake actually is, as well as how bossy and insufferable he is. Rumours are starting to circulate that this show is currently being touted in America, with a view to a potential remake over there. I do hope they remember, if they go ahead and make it, that the 'hero' is supposed to be anything but. It would be a hell of a shame if we wound up with some crusading white knight, leading a band of good guys. This is Blake's 13¾. Not Robin Hood.

Comments

( 6 fierce growls — Growl fiercely )
tinx_r
Aug. 10th, 2012 07:35 am (UTC)
I am waiting to hear they are remaking it with Avon as a woman, or to be played by Owen Wilson...

Also, awesome recap
swordznsorcery
Aug. 11th, 2012 02:10 am (UTC)
Oh dear, I hadn't considered that. I suppose the former wouldn't matter too much, if the scripts and casting are right? No, I'm not convinced either.

Owen Wilson. Gah. With Ben Stiller as Blake. Hopefully we'll be saved from that if it's to be a TV series again, rather than a movie!
ladygretchen
Aug. 12th, 2012 03:25 am (UTC)
An American remake must include Adam Baldwin somewhere. He can be Gan. Oh wait…he already played Jayne Cobb. lol. Sounds cool though.

"…a giant deluge of stupid" that whole paragraph had me hysterical!
i_bookwyrme
Aug. 16th, 2012 01:00 am (UTC)
Yes, but I love the "Life expectancy" exchange between Callie & Avon:


Callie: My people have a saying: A man who trusts can never be betrayed, only mistaken.
Avon: Life expectancy must be fairly short among your people.

Not that it really works for Callie as a freedom fighter, but oh well.
swordznsorcery
Aug. 16th, 2012 01:22 am (UTC)
Yes, that is a good scene. Most of Avon's lines are great ones.
i_bookwyrme
Aug. 16th, 2012 05:00 pm (UTC)
Most of Avon's lines in most episodes. This one just happens to be a favorite.

Edited at 2012-08-16 05:00 pm (UTC)
( 6 fierce growls — Growl fiercely )

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