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Up to date as of January 31, 2010

From TARDIS Index File, the free Doctor Who reference.

This article is written from the Real World point of view. TARDIS

Blake's 7 (sometimes spelled Blakes 7, as this was the title shown at the beginning of the series) was a science fiction adventure drama television series in the space opera sub-genre which had a considerable cross-over between its crew and that of Doctor Who, which was airing at the same time. Some Doctor Who Universe stories have featured crossovers between elements of Blake's 7 and Doctor Who. It was first created by Dalek creator Terry Nation.

Contents

Overview

Premise and tone

The series was set an unspecified time in the future. The first two seasons concerned the adventures of the experienced but still idealistic rebel Roj Blake and the crew of the Liberator, an alien starship which they had acquired who fought the despotic Terran Federation, represented by Servalan, aided by Travis.

In the third season, Blake vanished and was replaced by his second in command, the vengeful genius Kerr Avon. The Liberator was destroyed at the end of the season and in the next replaced by another starship, the Scorpio.

Blake's 7 was a less fundamentally optimistic series than Doctor Who. The majority of the protagonists met violent deaths during the course of the series, and the dystopian setting remaining basically unchanged or even, perhaps, got worse as a result of the actions of the rebels.

Aliens and "monsters" did appear, though rarely, with the arguable exception of Cally, a telepathic crew member who either came from a telepathic non-human species or from a race of biologically modified humans. The Human Terran Federation was, apparently, the only major power structure throughout the sector of space visited by the crew.

Production history

Blake's 7 was first broadcast on BBC 1 between 1978 and 1981. Its characters, setting was created by, and, for the first season, was entirely written by Terry Nation, the creator of the Daleks. Prolific Doctor Who director David Maloney produced the first three seasons of the series (sometimes referred to as Season A, Season B and Season C) and Chris Boucher, the writer of several Doctor Who serials, acted as Script Editor and writer on all four seasons. (Former Doctor Who Script Editor Robert Holmes, on declining the job of script editor of Blake's 7 had suggested Boucher as a substitute.)

Cast and Crew connections

Production personnel common to both series

Writers and Script Editors

Directors and Producers

Miscellaneous crew

In other media

  • Barry Letts - Writer of two BBC Radio 4 plays set during the fourth series.
  • Tony Attwood - Author of Afterlife, a sequel novel to Blake's 7 set after the last episode of the series.

Actors

Actors from Doctor Who in Blake's 7

Regulars
Others

Blake's 7 Regular Cast with Doctor Who and Torchwood connections

Production Materials

  • Many generic science-fiction props appeared in both series. For instance, ray guns carried by Bayban's men in City at the Edge of the World were also used by the Fosters in The Keeper of Traken.
  • Model footage (of explosions and so on) was also occasionally recycled (for instance, the same footage is used to show the destruction of a DSV in Redemption and Mawdryn's ship in Mawdryn Undead).
  • More specifically, Federation trooper uniforms were reused as Orderly uniforms in Frontios.
  • Sea Devil costumes were cosmetically altered and used to represent Phibians in Orac and Dorian's former associate in Rescue.

In-Universe Crossovers

Proposed crossovers

A crossover between the two series was proposed at least twice.

The last episode of Season B of Blake's 7 featured an invasion of the galaxy by aliens, called Andromedans, from outside the Galaxy. The aliens were so powerful that the crew of the Liberator pitched in with the Federation to fight them off. Terry Nation had wanted to feature the Daleks as the invading force. However, as Chris Boucher recalls, the idea was strongly rejected by the producer and Boucher himself.

Tom Baker and Gareth Thomas, who played Blake, thought it would be amusing for the Doctor and Blake to meet for a few seconds in a corridor on either Doctor Who or Blake's 7, but this idea was, again, over-ruled.

Crossovers and Doctor Who Universe continuity

Eventually a crossover did appear.

  • Chris Boucher's novel Corpse Marker, a sequel to The Robots of Death, features the psychostrategist Carnell, a character who had first appeared in the Blake's 7 episode Weapon. (Presumably, then, Corpse Marker happens before "Weapon", given that that episode features Carnell's death.) Carnell's background was left vague in the novel. The character appeared again in the Kaldor City series of audios.

Two references also exist to the existence of Blake's 7 as a television series in the Doctor Who Universe.

"I managed to find him two entire episodes of Blake's 7, on the original video tape. I found them to be a wonderful insight into the literature of Gavin's era. He taught me how to do the 'maximum power' thing. With the arms."

This refers to a scene involving Servalan, in the third season finale episode "Terminal". Bernice Summerfield comments on another occasion that Roj Blake seems to exist both a fictional character and as a real person, "which can't be right".


This article uses material from the "Blake's 7" article on the Dr Who wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.







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