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Episode B6: Trial
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hobgoblin



Joined: 26 Apr 2005
Posts: 819
Location: Brisbane, QLD

PostPosted: Sat Dec 31, 2005 2:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Glad you found the link of interest.

With regard to the Federation, it appears to be a two-tiered system, with a civil authority that controls the judiciary (Way Back and Space Fall) and a military wing (Space Command.) We know that the President appointed Servalan but Par comments that Space Command really run the Federation. Later on this becomes true when Servalan launches her coup.

In "Aftermath" Avon makes the comments about it being difficult to sustain a military dictatorship without a military. This is just after he learns of Servalan's usupation of power.

Therefore, the military always seemed to have control, or provide the backbone of the Administration, even if not directly under the control of Servalan's civil predecessor.

The waters are muddied even more when Servalan purges Le Grand and friends in "Voice fromt eh Past." Was she acting under the Presiden'ts orders or was she just clearing the way for her own coup, using Le Grand's treachery as an excuse?

Does Servalan orchestrate the military operation in The Way back or is there also a civil wing that also contains death squads?

Perhaps either Space Command is an elite and "lesser" officers are conscripts. We know Tarrant went through an acadmey with intensive training whilst Jarvik was able to resign from his post. It seems like Hitler's SS with a trained elite and others being conscripts. As the universe is not at war (until Star One) conscripts could leave after a time. Vila alleges he bought his delta grading so he would not be forced to become a military captain but Avon, Blaker and co make no mention of ever being forced to serve. Perhaps alpha grades are only recruited in times of war. Their high intelligence would make them unsuitable to be soldiers, being too wiling to question orders.

I'm glad you mentioned mutoids! I started a little discussion on this a few months ago with some interesting results. Here is the link:

http://www.blakes-7.co.uk/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=3223
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>CarnÚll<
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 31, 2005 8:05 am    Post subject: Elephants Make Good Housepets Because They Smell of Icecream Reply with quote

*Jaw Wide Open* Real Blake's 7 Discussion... They Said It Was Dead
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boroboy



Joined: 28 Dec 2005
Posts: 298

PostPosted: Sat Jan 07, 2006 4:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There is an interesting discussion of women in the military that is relevent to this discussion at Judith Proctor's "hermit" site.
http://www.hermit.org/Blakes7/Essays/Soldiers.html
It touches on the issue of the shortage of troopers in an expanding Federation and the need to use the full population to staff the military.
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Cockroach Boy



Joined: 29 Dec 2005
Posts: 7143
Location: Dancing with the Mara

PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2006 6:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Much as I like Boucher's script for this one, Brian Croucher's peformance is still a problem for me. His rage in the court simply isn't threatening and sounds more like a tantrum. I also have difficulty squaring the idea of Travis as a totally commited officer with his obsession with killing Blake. Surely if he is that commited, a personal vendetta would not reach such an all consuming level that he would have let it endanger his career? At this point the scripts seem to have been written for Croucher's interpretation which may be why I have difficulty with it - I much prefer Grief's interpretation of Travis, not just because he was the first but because he was genuinely scary and fascinating.

Unlike most people, I prefer the Blake & Zil scenario. It's a strange subplot but a charming ind interesting one all the same. The wierdness of the planet suits the themes of Blake's internal struggle. It helps to devellop further the idea of him as a flawed hero who can never quite escape his self doubt. It also tells us a lot about his relationship with Avon.

We're all used to the theory that Avon was obsessessed with Blake. However this is an obsession that runs both ways. Blake surely knows that if he leaves the Liberator, Avon will assume the dominant position. He knows that his survival will depend on Avon meeting the rendevouz - and he even gives him a get out clause in his recorded message. It seems that Blake feels that if someone as opposite to him as Avon will come back for him, then his 'cause' is justified. Avon's support - however reluctantly it s given - is more important to him than that of any of the rest of the crew. Maybe he feels that if Avon can be 'redeemed' then anyone can?

To return the trial scenario, despite Croucher it still has some good moments. Considering how godawful he was in Orbit, John Savident is surprisingly good and Jackie Pearce shines in her scenes, especially at the end. We also see another level of ambiguity with Blake's attack on Space Headquaters. We have got to know characters like Thania, Rontaine and Burcol quite well over the last fifty minutes and their deaths seem slightly tragic, especially as Travis escapes. It is ironic that in unintentionally saving Travis life, Blake moves close to him in his methods. If the line to Star One began with Pressure Point, it is even more clearly drawn from here on.
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Janov Seldon



Joined: 16 May 2004
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2006 12:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd say the operation in The Way Back is more likely to have been orchestrated by Central Security. They presumably don't have enough troops and can therefore call upon Space Command for additional troops as and when they require them. The troopers would likely have been under the command of a Central Security officer and several section leaders.

In the Third Reich, the Gestapo and/or the SS could call on the services of normal Wehrmacht units if they needed troops for shooting partisans or the massacres of civilians.

It's unlikely that the request for troops would have landed on Servalan's desk, because it's so far below her position. She may get it as part of a summary, but nothing higher.


As for conscripts, I'd say it's more likely that ALL Federation citizens would have had some period of military training - both Avon and Blake were very savvy around Federation weaponary, Blake even asks for Avon's opinion on the gun captured in Project Avalon. Alpha grades being superior wouldn't have had to serve for too long and those that did make the grade were probably offered inducements to remain, such as a step in rank or higher pay. It's also possible that the likes of Travis or Tarrant were inducted into the military at an earlier age than that required for conscription (normally 1.
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Richard1978



Joined: 25 May 2006
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PostPosted: Mon May 29, 2006 10:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

All 3 subplots are interesting, the crew wondering what to do without Gan & Blake, Blake & Zil & the trial it's self.
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thunda



Joined: 27 Jun 2005
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 20, 2012 9:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Seems to me like Blake did alot more harm than good with that attack on Servalan's headquarters. Besides the obvious of allowing Travis to escape, it also caused the death of Fleet Warden General Samor, the one person who may have been able to stop Servalan from seizing control of the government. Add to that Bercol and Rontane dying, the president lost his best means of keeping tabs on Servalan, which leads to his being overthrown.
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boroboy



Joined: 28 Dec 2005
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 21, 2012 3:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It gets worse. Blakes continual refusal to kill Travis means that Travis can continue to make his plans with the Aliens - leading to the intergalactic war and the death of millions (if not billions). Neither Blake nor Servalan fare too well in the whole Star One arc - both should have known better than to allow a total psychopath (because, by this time, that's exactly what Travis is, and they know it) access to Star One - for any reason. The whole Star one issue makes Blake look really really bad - the idea that it's OK for him to take advantage of the destruction of Star One (and the death, destruction and chaos that will befall humanity because of this) - but not for Aliens is where he really crosses the line. Blake is trapped in a death spiral - just like Travis. He says that the deaths that will result by the destruction of Star One will make all the previous killing and destruction justified. He literally says that he needs to kill all these extra people to find out if *he* was right. Blake is clearly a narcissistic psychopath - just like Travis.
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thunda



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PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 8:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Interesting points, boroboy, it makes me wonder if Blake was more distraught at Gan's death or finding an empty room. In fact by the end of the episode he's laughing like he forgot all about poor Gan.
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boroboy



Joined: 28 Dec 2005
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 4:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hmm... I don't recall any laughter at the end of that episode - I'll have to watch it again. You made a pretty astute observation regarding if Blake was more distraught over the mission failure or Gan's death. I think that Blakes reaction to Gan's death is very similar to that when they think Cally is dead in S-L-D. All ideas about changing/overthrowing the oppressive federation are forgotten in an emotional tit-for-tat retaliation. One one hand this could be that he is using their deaths to justify his next mass murder - much like terrorists do. Or he really has no bigger plan and the whole thing is just based on emotion and his drive to "destroy the federation" is really about getting revenge for what they did to him and his family and he is exploiting other peoples desire to bring down the federation for his own ends (and I don't mean his crew... they have no political ambitions at all). Either way he is a very dangerous and unpleasant man.
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Futsie
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Joined: 21 May 2004
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 24, 2012 12:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The laughter at the end was when Avon described Zil as a "philosophical flea", followed by the line "then again, perhaps they're not that uncommon", referring to Vila

I've always found Blake's motives a bit ambiguous... he seems to be genuinely affected by Gan's death, but then when Avon accuses him of merely manipulating the others, he doesn't deny it, but it's not clear if he's just treating Avon's comments with a certain amount of contempt.

I wouldn't describe Blake as psychotic or as a narcissist tho... I think he probably started off as genuinely caring about the injustice of the Federation, but after suffering so much himself and having his mind tinkered with, his judgment has become rather (but not entirely) clouded by obsession and a desire for revenge....

... which begs a comparison with Travis, as people have mentioned in the last few posts I think... but surely by the end of Star One, the difference between Blake and Travis is that Travis was apparently prepared to wipe out humanity, whereas Blake gave up his chance for revenge and to smash the Federation in order to save humanity from the Andromedans... (although I suppose you could argue that Blake only saved humanity for selfish reasons...?)
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thunda



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PostPosted: Wed Oct 24, 2012 11:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

"They will follow him, and he will fight to the last drop of their blood".
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MagnusGreel



Joined: 30 Dec 2005
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2012 4:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

These days, people go way too far in blaming and accusing Blake I think. He's a mixture of earnest concern and selfish insecure impulses, like ALL of us. It's easy for us to judge as TV viewers in comfortable armchairs, when we haven't been in a situation like that for one moment. Blake is far more willing to act to help others than most of us would be.

I don't think Blake actually wants all those Star One deaths Callie talked about. I think he's just willing to risk this to undermine the military's control, which is somehow dependent on the computer network. If you're trying to pull off what he's trying to do, you make yourself used to the idea of risks vs. benefits-- perhaps too used to it.

He says they need to win to justify all the damage up till then, not just kill a lot more people
(for its own sake) to justify it. That's a human, legitimate concern. The deaths caused so far must not turn out to have been wasted. The selfish part is when he divulges that winning is also needed to prove that HE was "right". It's wrong to take risks with civilization just to put a band-aid over your insecurities. This is also a very human impulse too, which most of us would probably have in his place. We just wouldn't be able to articulate it as well.
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