» » Blake's 7 Project Avalon (1978–1981)

Short summary

Blake and Jenna teleport down to evacuate a well-known resistance leader named Avalon, only to find that she was captured by the Federation. The Liberator's crew launch a rescue mission, not realizing that Travis is using Avalon as bait.

The cave scenes were filmed in Wookey Hole, near Wells. This was the same location used for the Doctor Who (1963) serial "Revenge of the Cybermen".

Glynis Barber, who appears as the principal Mutoid in this episode, later returned to the show in the fourth season in the regular role of Soolin.

In the original script, Cally accompanied Blake to the planet. When Sally Knyvette complained that she wasn't given much to do, it was rewritten to have Jenna go down.

Glynis Barber was doubled by Stuart Fell in the scene where her mutoid leaps from a ledge and attacks a guard, who was doubled by Cyd Child. They originally planned to do the opposite stunts, but it didn't look right.

The shoot-out in the base was inspired by the opening battle from Star Wars (1977), which premiered in the UK on the same date that the series aired.

The gun that Chevner uses is actually a US Army M16 automatic weapon.

Before been cast in a guest role in this story Julia Vidler had been seen for Jenna.

This episode also saw the second and last appearance of the Federation Security Robot. The shooting schedules were very tight for the whole of the first season and there just was not enough time to deal with an unruly robot.

Travis states that he could have killed Blake twice if he hadn't been instructed to leave the Liberator intact. This could refer to his on-screen encounters with the Liberator crew in Blake's 7: Seek-Locate-Destroy (1978) and Blake's 7: Duel (1978) but it doesn't seem an accurate description of events so may refer to off-screen encounters. It is notable that at the end of "Duel" Travis was pursuing the Liberator, yet here he is already on the planet waiting for Blake to arrive.

User reviews

  • comment
    • Author: Beazerdred
    The crew of The Liberator try to find Avalon a resistance leader only to learn that she has been captured by the Federation . Meanwhile Space Commander Travis reveals he has a plan to eliminate Blake and capture The Liberator

    BLAKES 7 was always a bleak , cynical , nihilistic show and it's summed up by this bloodthirsty episode . Set on a frozen planet it sees a bunch of rebels shot down in cold blood by a Mutoid unit . The fact that one of the rebel party contains a Federation informer who pleads for their life cuts no ice and is proof that you can't negotiate with fascism . There's also a scene where Travis needs to demonstrate a virus Federation scientists have developed so picks out a labourer at random and uses him as a human experiment . The connection between the Terran Federation and Nazism isn't subtle but very effective

    The Liberator crew are on a mission to rescue Avalon who is held prisoner so get hack in to the prison system computer to find out what cell she is being kept in . At no point however do they make any attempt to rescue any of the other prisoners being held and they are left to their fate which will no doubt involve torture and execution . You could claim that it's impractical to rescue everyone and you'd probably be right . One can't help thinking that if this series was made today that the heroes would always win , the villains would always lose and innocent bystanders would all live to see the end credits but real life isn't like that and this downbeat pessimistic tone makes BLAKES 7 a more compelling show than you could ever expect it to be

    What also helps this episode is the production team have resisted the temptation to make everything too futuristic . Medical personnel wear the same overalls and gowns as surgeons wear in the 1970s and the rebels are armed with the M-16 Armalite assault rifle . Of course from a logical point of view that's like 20th Century resistance fighters fighting the Nazis being armed with bows and arrows but this is much preferable to designers trying to second guess what weapons will look like hundreds of years in the future . Some very good location in this episode too
  • comment
    • Author: Trash
    Blake and Jenna teleport to a planet to evacuate Avalon, a well-known resistance leader who they discover was captured by the Federation. The Liberator's crew then launch a rescue mission unaware of Space Commander Travis' plan using Avalon as bait.

    "Project Avalon" is a good if predictable episode of Blake's 7. The plot is certainly not original and lacks the interesting spin that many Blake's 7 stories put on familiar ideas and concepts. I am always impressed with how well-realized the ships and planets are on this series when considering the budget. After the great and exciting "Duel", "Project Avalon" feels like a compulsory, uninspired dragging out of the Travis storyline.

  • Episode cast overview, first billed only:
    Gareth Thomas Gareth Thomas - Roj Blake
    Sally Knyvette Sally Knyvette - Jenna Stannis
    Paul Darrow Paul Darrow - Kerr Avon
    Jan Chappell Jan Chappell - Cally
    Michael Keating Michael Keating - Vila Restal
    David Jackson David Jackson - Olag Gan
    Peter Tuddenham Peter Tuddenham - Zen (voice)
    Stephen Greif Stephen Greif - Space Commander Travis
    Jacqueline Pearce Jacqueline Pearce - Supreme Commander Servalan
    Julia Vidler Julia Vidler - Avalon
    David Bailie David Bailie - Chevner
    Glynis Barber Glynis Barber - Mutoid
    John Baker John Baker - Scientist
    John Rolfe John Rolfe - Terloc
    David Sterne David Sterne - Guard
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