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Character discussion: Avon

 
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thunda



Joined: 27 Jun 2005
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 14, 2015 9:11 am    Post subject: Character discussion: Avon Reply with quote

Since Avon seems to be the most complex and evolving character of the crew Iím going to give my analysis of him season by season and at the end Iíll try to give a summation.

Season 1;
Avon - A brilliant, aloof, introvert loner who wants to get rich quick. Right? Well, letís dig a little deeper. Although heís not shown to just sit down and open up about himself he did reveal certain aspects of his life when he felt comfortable with the people he was with and when it related to the matter at hand. I think more of him keeping things inside had to do with the fact that no one asked him about his past. In fact we know just as much about him in season 1 as we do the rest of the crw, save Blake, of course. Itís obvious heís intelligent but I wouldnít put him on that genius level just yet as he will be.

He prefers the safety of the ship rather than going on away missions where he could get killed or hurt but once he gets a taste of the action he starts to appreciate it probably because itís a new experience for him and so much different than being in a lab or behind a desk. He also discovers he likes the adventure and is good on missions but overall him being pragmatic at this point will cause him to favor staying aboard the Liberator. Self preservation is still the key driving force with him which will limit his risks to calculated ones that are to his advantage.

He never admitted it but he showed a great deal of respect for Blake and Jenna. Somewhat because theyíre both intelligent like him but more because he realized that they both knew his worth and appreciated it in much the same way he will with Vila in season 3 and 4. They may not have always seen eye to eye with him but they usually listened to what he had to say and hates to be ignored and wants people to know heís the smartest in the room. He also knew they would help him out of jams and were probably the closest thing to friends that he ever had. Keep in mind Jenna told him about the Liberatorís riches after she discovered them which shows she had a certain amount of trust and respect for him. As for the rest of the crew, Gan irritated him, Vila he tolerated and Cally he was leery of.

He said heís not a follower but he was following Blake because he realized at that point Blake was a natural leader and had a plan while he didnít. Sure, Avon dreamed of getting a job with the Federation Banking System and embezzling a few million credits but what then? Unlike Vila he never showed signs of craving material things so what would he have done with the money? Women? clothes? Food? Gambling? Parties? Soma? Shadow? None of those things seemed in his personality at that point and I doubt he would just hide on some backwater planet and play video games so I suspect without a long term plan or Anna(although we donít know about her yet) he felt better off gravitating around Blake as everyone else did.

The last two episodes of season 1 mark a turning point for the character. In Deliverance he is put in charge of a team and sent on a mission and what happens? He teleports up without Jenna. Losing the big manís girl is not the way to impress him. Thereís a big difference between wanting to be the leader and being the leader and Avon found that out the hard way. Going back down to the planet he then gets bogged down with another raceís problem as she is in the clutches of cavemen for perhaps hours with who knows what is happening to her. By the end of the episode he saves a dead race, saves Jenna, and starts to see what Blake goes through, however, the damage has been done and at this point the rest of the crew realize heís not cut out to replace Blake and they wonít take orders from him. I mean why should they? Heís still just another equal member of Blakeís crew. The next episode things will change.

In Orac Avon will do something he never had but will do again often, save Blakeís life. He will take charge of the remaining crew, teleport down, and arrive in nick of time to rescue Blake and Cally from Servalan and Travis, thus saving everyoneís life. This will be a big confidence boost for him and will change his role in the eyes of the rest and will carry on into next season. He will rise in rank to almost Blake status and... well thatís for part two.
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thunda



Joined: 27 Jun 2005
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 19, 2016 9:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Season 2 -

At the end of the first season Avon saved Blakeís life thus proving to himself and to the others(mostly to himself) that their fearless leader is not infallible. In the first episode of season 2 with his confidence up he shows Blake that he may be cleverer than him by figuring out how to stop Oracís prophesy. This will give him a big boost that he will carry throughout the season and also cement his position as Blakeís second in command. Without complaining Avon will go on missions not only because he feels he is best suited for them but he starts to enjoy them. He will play the hero several times at the risk of his own life to save the crew. His transformation into a man of action has begun.

With Ganís death it not only takes away Blakeís most loyal supporter it shakes the foundation of the crew creating cracks in their loyalty. He doesnít really use that to his advantage as at this point he realizes he needs Blake because he doesnít want the responsibilty of leadership. After he loses his ďfriendĒ Tynus he begins to understand the Liberatorís crew is the closest he has to people he can rely on and no longer wants to be on his own, he wants the safety of the Liberator and its crew. By the end of the season that will change to he wants the Liberator minus Blake. He should know to be careful what you wish for.
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Cockroach Boy



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PostPosted: Sun Mar 06, 2016 11:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I get the impression Avon didn't know how to process the fact that Blake trusted him.
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thunda



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PostPosted: Mon Mar 07, 2016 6:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cockroach Boy wrote:
I get the impression Avon didn't know how to process the fact that Blake trusted him.

Do you believe Blake actually trusted Avon?
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Cockroach Boy



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PostPosted: Mon Mar 07, 2016 10:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

thunda wrote:
Cockroach Boy wrote:
I get the impression Avon didn't know how to process the fact that Blake trusted him.

Do you believe Blake actually trusted Avon?


I think Blake knew how to play people. He couldn't intimidate him in the way he could Villa but he knew what would get under his defences.
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RichardWho



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PostPosted: Mon Mar 07, 2016 3:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes I agree Blake was good at manipulating people. Season 2 "Trial" is a good example of clever manipulation of the crew by Blake.
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thunda



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PostPosted: Mon May 23, 2016 10:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Season 3 -

Well, Avon finally has the three things heís desired the last few years; freedom from Blake, the Federation off his back, and the Liberator. So, why isnít he happy? Letís pick up at the start of season 3 where Avon has just finished rescuing Blake, keeping his word to fight an invasion fleet, and pretty much saving the galaxy. Heís at the peak of his self-confidence and now he has the Liberator. Unfortunately he requires a crew and thatís where his problems begin. Emulating Blake he adds two strangers whom he shared an adventure with assuming that will assure their loyalty but he doesnít have Blakeís manipulative gift or even a decent amount of people skills to keep things running smoothly. Tarrant is antagonistic, Dayna is headstrong, Cally has become a peacenik, and Vila... is Vila. The stress of trying to maintain leadership starts to take its toll on Avon and causes him to seek an outlet by finishing up some business from his past. Before that episode he still had a healthy respect for life which he had to sacrifice. It re-establishes him as alpha male but it drives him one step closer to madness. He needs to get back to the way things used to be and that means finding Blake even if thereís only a slim chance because whether he wants to admit it or not he doesnít have a plan, Blake had the plan.
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thunda



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PostPosted: Sun Aug 28, 2016 9:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Season 3 (amendment) - In Dawn of the Gods Avon attempted to flee a seemingly doomed Liberator but was stopped by Tarrant. Add to that the crew gets captured and when they escape itís not because of him but due to Cally whom he wants to leave behind. I believe this all stuck in his mind and he saw this as the crew seeing a chink in his armor which causes him to compensate by becoming bolder, less compassionate yet more protective of Cally. This change will increase as the season progresses and carry on into the next.
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thunda



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PostPosted: Sat Dec 03, 2016 8:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Season 4

Avon

Well, Avon is up the proverbial creek without a paddle, and his boat has a leak, and there are sharks, crocodiles and piranhas in the water. He lost the Liberator, discovered his love turned him in, found out Blake was dead, lost Cally, and his crew is composed of killers and a spineless thief.

Losing the Liberator was a big blow. It was sanctuary, transportation, hospital, a source of wealth, laboratory, workshop, it was his home for a few years. It was where he felt safe. Finding out the truth about Anna was a crushing blow. His instincts, his love, his judgement, his reasoning, his trust, were all wrong. I believe this put him on the road to madness. Hearing that Blake was dead got him walking towards it. Whether he believed Servalanís tale or not the fact remains that being unable to find him meant that he had to continue with the burden of command. Cally was his link to humanity, she understood him, she kept him grounded. Without her heís now on that road, jogging.

His crew, well, they donít seem to have the respect for him that the original had. Sure, they accept him as leader but itís tenuous. Without the Liberator he needs them more than they need him and being he doesnít have Blakeís power of manipulation he has to do things heís uncomfortable with to remain top dog. Things such as; proving heís ruthless, showing how intelligent he is, planning heists, putting aside his instinct for survival and taking the lead on missions, and trying to kickstart the rebellion. All those things took a tremendous toll, heís at a moderate sprint on that road, now.

All those things kind of backfired so he tried to return to the period when he felt safe. He sought out Blake, and we know how that turned out. Heís reached the finish line.

Please feel free to comment,
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Commissioner Sleer



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PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2017 5:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Enjoyed your analysis thunda.

I just rewatched Rumours of Death recently and I think that's where Avon started to lose it. There are many ways to interpret the final scene between him and Servalan over Bartolomew's body, but now I see it as follows:

Avon realises Anna Grant was all a lie. He doesn't believe that she loved him (whether or not she actually did.) He's upset by this but even more so by the fact that he was fooled. After all, he thinks he's the smartest in the room (and he usually is, to be fair.)

So he sets Servalan free, partially because he said he'd let her go if she gave him information (which she claims she was going to but Avon knows damn well Servalan will do or say anything to do what she needs to do) but moreso knowing how dangerous she is. Why would she let him live at this point? (More on that later.) Suicide by Servalan, if you will, because this is the point Avon breaks, and he's not fully thinking things through.

Servalan can read a room and knows Avon can't "pretend that didn't happen." She orders him to put on the bracelet, telling him she'll send his friends a corpse. She knows it's the only way he'll put the bracelet on. I don't think she had any intention of actually killing him or she would have done it outright. Rather, in her own way, she's thanking him for saving her from the edge and returning the favor. The guard coming down the stairs was just a distraction. I don't believe she would have pulled the trigger.

But all of the last paragraph is for a Servalan thread!

So Avon loses some respect for his own judgment and decides it's best to find Blake who at least was able to do the social heavy lifting while Avon excelled at being the man behind the curtain. But Avon's behavior becomes increasingly risky, looking at his decisions in Terminal and Stardrive, just for starters.
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thunda



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PostPosted: Tue May 23, 2017 8:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Interesting. So you think Avon had reached his own "old wall" and Servalan was repaying the favor by helping him get his "nerve" back?
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Commissioner Sleer



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PostPosted: Fri Jun 09, 2017 9:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Absolutely. On countless rewatches I've come to the conclusion that Avon reached his own "old wall" in that moment, right in front of Servalan, directly after he realises who Bartolomew actually is and then kills her. It's a beautiful yet horrific twist after helping Servalan up off of the floor and promising to "let her go" which Tarrant tells him he isn't capable of doing. No one can. Now that same thing applies to Anna Grant and he can't let go either.

This probably goes in a separate Servalan thread, but this is the exact moment when I knew she did have emotions, strong ones, strong enough to recognise the same sort of suffering in someone else and made sure he stuck around to fight another day.

Yes they spend the entire third and fourth seasons trying to take each other out, but there's a weird and very real level of respect between them.
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