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Animals

Oggy! Oggy! Oggy! (No! No! No!)

AnimalsSue: Animals… I hope Pink Floyd do the music.

Tarrant is ferrying Dayna to the planet Bucol Two so she can visit an old teacher (and I do mean old).

Tarrant: Will he remember you?

Dayna: I should hope so.

Dayna smiles knowingly. I tut loudly.

Sue: What’s wrong?

Me: What’s wrong? Dayna is supposed to be sixteen, or thereabouts, I think, and she was even younger when she made a big impression on her teacher, if you know what I mean.

Sue: Don’t be so bad-minded, Neil. Maybe Dayna was an A-star student, and that’s why her teacher will remember her. Don’t be so quick to judge.

Dayna teleports to the planet and meets a strange creature covered in fur.

Sue: It’s a cross between a Yeti and a hatstand. Is that her teacher? Does he train all the local Jedi?

The Scorpio is ambushed by Federation pursuit ships.

Sue: It’s absolutely fine. Tarrant can outrun them with his super-duper new engine.

The Scorpio is hit by a plasma bolt.

Sue: Oh.

AnimalsMeanwhile, Dayna finds herself surrounded by furry animals.

Sue: They’re cute. They look like horny Ewoks.

Dayna shoots one of them in the face.

Sue: What the ****? What did she do that for? He only wanted a cuddle!

The Scorpio suffers several direct hits and Tarrant is lucky to escape with his life.

Sue: Avon is going to be furious when he finds out.

Slave: Main teleport system is damaged to a degree as yet unspecified. Navigation systems register first warning of malfunction. Main detectors show fifty percent is functional. Further damage is under assessment.

Sue: They’ve only just got the bloody thing working! If only Slave had spotted those ships a little earlier. They need better radar. That’s their next upgrade – better radar.

Dayna, who is now stranded on the planet, is being chased by the titular animals.

Sue: Stop ****ing killing them!

She is rescued by a man in his early fifties. His name is Justin.

Sue: Justin time! Sorry. I won’t do that again, I promise.

Justin is extremely pleased to see Dayna.

AnimalsJustin: Here, let me look at you. My little pupil Dayna, lovelier than ever.

Sue: Er… I beg your pardon?

Me: I did try to warn you, Sue. I’m really sorry, but this is going to get very rough, very soon. Why do you think I’m cradling a bottle of Jim Beam? Here, do you want some?

Sue: No, that would be cheating.

Justin: You look quite beautiful…

Sue: Oh my God, this is really dodgy.

Dayna: I think it’s disgusting.

Sue: Join the ****ing club!

Dayna isn’t referring to Justin’s advances, she’s talking about her mentor’s experiments on some animals he’s bred – the loon! – the most intelligent of which is called Og.

Sue: What kind of name is Og? Is he taking the piss or what?

Dayna tells Justin about her gang, and how they are currently scouring the galaxy, recruiting experts to help them in their never-ending war against the Federation.

Sue: Well, that’s certainly news to me. When was that decided?

However, Justin isn’t interested in joining a rag-tag band of terrorists.

Justin: Of course, if you wanted to stay on your own, that would be different.

Sue: Will somebody please call the police! Or Operation Yewtree! Anybody!

AnimalsOh look, it’s Commissioner Servalan Sleer.

Sue: What happened to her giant space crocodile? Her new spaceship looks like a Bingo hall.

A Federation captain delivers a classified report on Bucol Two.

Sue: How can he possibly read that thing? It’s just shapes! And why is Servalan fondling a thermostat? Why is she even in this episode? Still, things must be bad; I’m sure this is the first time I’ve seen her wear the same thing twice.

Back on Bucol Two, the animals are revolting.

Sue: I feel sorry for them. They’re bloody terrible singers, though.

Justin is still trying to get into Dayna’s pants.

Justin: You came here expecting more, a young love resurrected.

Sue: Oh, for God’s sake. Stop it!

There was a time when the Federation wanted to use Justin’s animals as shock troops.

Sue: The enemy would get a shock all right. And then they’d die laughing. This is preposterous, Neil.

Justin: Those animals can go into any of the devastated sectors of the war zone and the radiation won’t kill them. They can work on simple projects already.

Sue: Now if only we could get them to stop flinging their own shit at each other, I’m sure they’d be brilliant.

AnimalsJustin’s work is almost complete.

Sue: Never trust a man with thin lips. And his top lip is so thin, it’s practically invisible.

Tarrant limps back to Xenon base in a battered and bruised Scorpio.

Sue: That’s the last time Avon will give Tarrant the keys to the car. He’ll ground him for this.

Sue used to be a hairdresser, which probably explains why she’s drawn to the sculptured hairstyles which seem to be all the rage within the Federation’s ranks.

Sue: That’s one hell of a graduated bob. Is that what all the fashionable vampires are wearing these days? Graduated bobs?

Me: I don’t even know what that means.

Sue: Is Servalan still pretending to be somebody else?

Me: Yes.

Sue: Why?

Me: **** knows.

AnimalsSue: But it’s ridiculous. It would be like Margaret Thatcher faking her own death and coming back as Mrs Hatcher, hoping no one would notice as she became Prime Minister again. She hasn’t even dyed her hair!

Justin bitterly regrets turning Federation deserters into furry animals with silly names.

Sue: Those animals are the least of your crimes, mate.

When Justin says he wants Dayna all to himself, Dayna breaks into a huge, self-satisfied grin. Which is weird because you’d think she’d throw up.

Sue: What the ****?

Servalan arranges to meet Ardus, an ex-Federation officer who knows everything there is to know about Bucol Two. The poor man lost his eyes during the war.

Sue: He’d have to be blind to leave the house wearing glasses like that.

I pause the DVD.

Me: Don’t you recognise him? I’ll give you a clue: “Paaaaaacker…”

Sue: Oh yeah. He’s been in Blake’s 7 before. Is he playing the same character?

Me: Yes.

AnimalsOK, I lied. This episode’s got enough problems without me telling the truth.

Ardus eventually recognises Servalan’s voice.

Sue: It took him long enough. I thought he was deaf as well as blind.

Ardus immediately regrets mentioning Servalan by name.

Sleer: Very well. I await your information.

Sue: Sorry, I mean (in a gruff, deep voice) Very well. I await your information.

Ardus tells Servalan everything she needs to know about Justin.

Sue: Doesn’t anybody know his surname?

Back on Bucol Two, Dayna offers to talk to the Og on Justin’s behalf.

Dayna: If he won’t trust you, perhaps he’ll trust me.

Sue: Yes, he’ll trust you because you killed his friends – right in front of him! Has Dayna been taking the stupid pills?

AnimalsJustin fondles Dayna’s hands.

Sue: I think I’m going to be sick.

Justin: I’ve been on my own on this planet so long now…

Sue: Oh dear. He’s been shagging all the animals. He basically just admitted it.

Back on the Scorpio, Vila prepares to drown himself in a tank full of shit.

Sue: This has nothing to do with the other plot. They are just killing time until that other pile of steaming shit finishes. What Vila’s doing here is a metaphor for what we are going through right now.

Sue trusts Justin as far as she can throw him.

Sue: Justin isn’t everything he seems.

Me: He’s exactly what he seems. That’s the ****ing problem, Sue!

Dayna extends the hand of friendship to Og. She promises Og that he won’t be hurt if he returns to Justin’s loving arms. Og points to his head.

Dayna: Not hurt. Not your head. Not hurt.

Sue: It’s all right. You can tell me. Show me where the creepy old man touched you.

Just as Dayna believes she’s about to make a breakthrough, Og throws her over a cliff.

Sue: Wow. She was even more wooden than usual. Anyone would think they threw a doll over that cliff instead. Actually, what the hell has happened to Dayna? I used to really like her. Now I can barely stand her.

AnimalsMeanwhile, in the other shit-stained plot, Soolin places a blue box next to Orac.

Sue: Is that Orac’s girlfriend? She doesn’t say very much. Still more animated than Soolin, though.

The Scorpio blasts off again.

Sue: Avon should sit down when they take off. It can’t be safe to stand up like that, especially the way Tarrant drives.

Dayna is interrogated by Servalan. Every time Dayna lies to her, Servalan presses a button on her chair and Dayna is subjected to a very intense orgasm.

Sue: I don’t know what Servalan is doing to her, but it looks all right to me.

Servalan asks Dayna if she loves Justin. Dayna denies it, but Servalan’s magic chair can detect the horrible truth. I swallow a bit of sick.

Sue: There should be a caption at the bottom of the screen: ‘My Teacher Molested Me And Now I’ve Fallen In Love Him’. Seriously, though, this episode is giving me the creeps.

Servalan offers to support Justin’s research, on one condition:

Servalan: That I use the animals in the way I think fit.

Sue: She’ll probably skin them and turn them into a nice dress.

Dayna refuses to cooperate with Servalan.

Sue: She’s holding out for one more orgasm.

Servalan switches to Plan B. By the time she’s finished with her, Dayna will hate Justin with every fibre of her being.

Sue: Is there anything that chair can’t do? If you sat in it, Neil, could I make you love me more?

Me: Give it a rest, love.

AnimalsJustin is so distraught when he discovers that Dayna has disappeared, he briefly considers suicide before hitting the bottle.

Sue: SHIT! That was the Fairy Liquid!

Servalan’s aversion therapy has been a complete success – Dayna now hates Justin as much as we do. Good for Servalan.

Servalan: You really hate him now, don’t you?

Sue: Remember that Maths lesson, when you were only fourteen and he –

Me: Stop it, Sue.

Dayna: I hate him.

Sue: I’m fairly sure this isn’t what the writer intended. I think we’re actually supposed to feel sorry for the old pervert.

I feel it’s only fair to tell Sue that this episode was originally written for Cally.

Sue: That’s no excuse. They should have realised the implications as soon as the problem presented itself. Soolin would have been just as bad – even though it would have given her something to do – so they should have sent Tarrant instead. That would have been much more interesting. But either way, they should have ditched the randy teacher routine. It just isn’t right.

AnimalsServalan storms Justin’s base with three snowmobilers equipped with graduated bobs. She tells the women that they can wing Og if they have to – but they can’t kill him.

Sue: Are they allowed to snap one of its horns off?

Avon, Tarrant and Soolin teleport to Bucol Two. It’s pissing down and they are drenched in seconds.

Sue: Paul Darrow’s hair gel is dripping into his eyes. This is not a good look for him. It looks like his head is melting… And now he looks like David Ginola from that angle. And not in a good way, either.

Servalan’s troops find and restrain Og.

Sue: Poor Og. The next time we see him, he’ll have a graduated bob.

When Avon blasts his way into Justin’s base, he… well, let’s just say it’s worth watching again. And again. And again.

Sue: Wow. What a recovery. Paul Darrow almost ended up on his arse but he remained super-cool. What a professional. That takes real talent, Neil.

Me: It serves him right for kicking that ****ing chair!

Sue: Rosie didn’t have anything to do with this shambles, did she? No? Oh, thank God for that.

When Justin agrees to Servalan’s demands, Dayna is taken to the magic chair again.

Servalan: You love him, Dayna. You love him, Dayna. You love him. Dayna…

Sue: I feel like I’ve been sat in that chair for years. “You love Blake’s 7, Sue. You love Doctor Who, Sue. You love redacted, Sue.”

Og has been tied to a stump in a field.

Sue: Aww, he reminds me of that Shetland pony I see on the common on the way to work. He can only walk around in circles as well, poor thing. It always makes me sad when I see him.

Me: Og is basically Li’l Sebastian. Aww.

When Avon, Tarrant and Soolin mount a rescue mission, Og is killed in the battle.

Sue: Damn it. Og was the best thing in this stupid mess!

AnimalsServalan’s ship blasts off.

Sue: **** me. What a brilliant shot! What’s a brilliant shot like that doing in a pile of shit like this?

Justin didn’t make it either, and the episode ends with Dayna weeping buckets of tears for her dead teacher/mentor/mad professor/lover/abuser (take your pick).

Sue: MAKE IT STOP!

Cue credits.

The Score:

Sue: **** me, that was shit!

1/10

It’s official. Animals is as bad as Trial.

Sue: I’m only giving it a mark for that crane shot at the end. It was seconds away from a big fat zero. What a load of shit.

Next Time:

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126 comments

  • Visit site
    July 30, 2014 4:18 pmPosted 3 years ago
    jsd

    Gotta agree with Sue on this one. Terrible. I would give it a 0 in fact, even the crane shot can’t redeem it. Apart from being insanely creepy it’s just so slow and tedious.

    • Visit site
      July 30, 2014 4:25 pmPosted 3 years ago
      Jonathan

      Are negative scores not permitted?

  • Visit site
    July 30, 2014 4:23 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Jonathan

    I watched this when I was 9 or 10 and seem to remember thinking at the time that it was shittier that a shitty shit.
    And that Sleer not being recognised was stretching things a bit.

    “Og” – a clear sign the writer is phoning it in.

    I wasn’t aware Dayna was 16. That makes it worse. Her father must have been blind not to have noticed. Oh – never mind.

    • July 30, 2014 4:26 pmPosted 3 years ago
      Neil Perryman (Author)

      I was just guessing her age. She seems like she’s playing it as a 16 year-old, though. Either way, the teacher/pupil love story is creepy whether she was 16 back then or 16 “now”.

      • Visit site
        July 30, 2014 4:49 pmPosted 3 years ago
        Robert

        It’s not any less creepy but she’s about 18-19 when we meet her. The point still stand though.

        • Visit site
          July 30, 2014 5:48 pmPosted 3 years ago
          Harriet

          She’s at least twenty-three. See below.

          • Visit site
            July 30, 2014 5:49 pmPosted 3 years ago
            Harriet

            (But yes, the point still stands.)

          • Visit site
            July 30, 2014 8:22 pmPosted 3 years ago
            Frankymole

            If she’s a teenager then that makes Avon seem dodgy then when kissed by Dayna in her first episode, when he says “I hope your curiosity isn’t too easily satisified”.

    • Visit site
      July 30, 2014 6:08 pmPosted 3 years ago
      Dave Sanders

      Phoning it in? This is B7, they couldn’t even afford to have Allan Prior reverse the charges.

  • Visit site
    July 30, 2014 4:46 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Rob

    Well no one can really argue with Sue’s score on this one can they? ‘Animals’ is officially the worse eppy of ‘Blake’s 7’…ever. Whilst I’ve seen every eppy of B7 at least a billion times…I’ve only watched ‘Animals’ on three occasions. I enjoyed this from Sue though:

    ‘But it’s ridiculous. It would be like Margaret Thatcher faking her own death and coming back as Mrs Hatcher, hoping no one would notice as she became Prime Minister again. She hasn’t even dyed her hair!’

    Brilliant 🙂

    The next eppy is much, much better.

    • Visit site
      July 30, 2014 5:36 pmPosted 3 years ago
      Harriet

      Oh… I was just about to say “the worst episode apart from Headhunter“…

      • Visit site
        July 30, 2014 9:41 pmPosted 3 years ago
        Katie c

        Nooo! I love Headhunter!!!

      • Visit site
        July 31, 2014 12:11 pmPosted 3 years ago
        Rob

        Wot’s not too love about ‘Headhunter’?

        Orac can satisfy your every desire…

  • Visit site
    July 30, 2014 4:54 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Dave Sanders

    This last lump of Prior regret
    Is one that we won’t soon forget;
    Not ’cause it’s exciting,
    We have it in writing
    This Yewtree thing’s not over yet.

  • Visit site
    July 30, 2014 4:58 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Gareth M

    This story I always found a bit creepy.
    I know Dayna’s meant to be young but 16 seems a little too young. Her and her father went to the beach planet when Dayna was a child.
    Her father knew of / followed Blake’s activities. She’s got to be in her 20s at least.
    It’s still very creepy. Justin still deserves to be on Cygnus Alpha.

    I enjoy the B-plot on Scorpio/Xenon base much more than the Dayna/Justin A-plot. And the B-plot is basically time filler. But it’s some well written / performed dialogue between the main cast. If only they’d stuck to that.

    I think I’d happily watch an episode where all they did was fix the ship and talk.
    There’s something interesting about them draining the navigation channels and repairing the guidance systems and whatever else they were doing.

    It does seem like Orac has just become the default useful computer. Slave is mostly useless crewmember number whatever. He doesn’t do much, just apologises and…is mostly a useless stand in for effects that aren’t there.

    Servalan/Sleer’s spaceship looks a little bit cigarette smoke stained.

    I agree with Sue, the last shot is good. But I think it’s the scenes on Scorpio that save this story, that last shot is just an added bonus.

    • Visit site
      July 30, 2014 5:46 pmPosted 3 years ago
      Harriet

      Dayna’s definitely in her early-to-mid-twenties. In Aftermath, she says “My father brought me here when I was a baby”; a few minutes later she states that her father landed the ship in which they now live on Sarran “more than twenty years ago”; Servalan refers to them hiding there for “twenty-odd years”; and Mellanby says he’s been dreaming of the freedom to go where he wants “for the last twenty years”.

      So let’s say she was about a year old when she arrived on Sarran, spent at least twenty-one years there, and has been on the Liberator or Scorpio for at least a year… that puts her up to twenty-three, minimum.

      None of which makes Justin’s abuse of the teacher-pupil relationship any less deplorable.

      • August 3, 2014 6:46 pmPosted 3 years ago
        Andy Luke

        Justin is hitting the mouthwash a bit hard from fairly early on.

    • Visit site
      July 31, 2014 2:46 amPosted 3 years ago
      Katie c

      “Servalan/Sleer’s spaceship looks a little bit cigarette smoke stained”

      Yes it looks like they re-used the beige striped wallpaper from my gran’s living room.

      I would have expected a confrontation between Dayna and Servalan to be more exciting. And if Justin had to die (we know he did) couldn’t Dayna have shot him while in YOU HATE HIM mode. This episode was totally boring more than anything else and the nonsensical ending made it all a complete waste of time.

  • Visit site
    July 30, 2014 5:29 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Dave Sanders

    How come everyone’s looking forward to Headhunter all of a sudden? If Hostage turns into an episode of The Goodies, Headhunter becomes pure Scooby-Doo.

    • July 30, 2014 5:47 pmPosted 3 years ago
      encyclops

      Yes, but it’s fun Scooby-Doo. And it has one of my favorite moments in the entire series for both Soolin and Orac.

    • July 30, 2014 5:48 pmPosted 3 years ago
      encyclops

      And, crucially, it’s better than “Animals,” more entertaining than “Traitor,” and at least as good as “Power” or “Stardrive.”

      • Visit site
        July 30, 2014 6:03 pmPosted 3 years ago
        Dave Sanders

        All of which are only ‘fun’ for completely the wrong reasons. That doesn’t make them *good*! 😛

        • July 30, 2014 6:55 pmPosted 3 years ago
          encyclops

          That’s why I said “at least.” 🙂 Point is, even if you don’t like “Headhunter” (I don’t blame you, but I don’t agree), it’s the best thing in the season so far and it only gets better from here.

      • Visit site
        July 30, 2014 6:33 pmPosted 3 years ago
        DPC

        I’ll second that.

        Okay, “Power” had some problems but the feel of the story saved it for me.

        “Stardrive” was largely a good, fast-paced, action-based, and tragedy-stricken (Dr Plaxton’s fate) story with some duff moments (Space Rats?!) that somehow don’t manage to derail everything despite it all. “Headhunter” is far better as the only duff moments I can think of are nowhere near as bad as the Space Rats’ presentation…

    • Visit site
      July 30, 2014 6:31 pmPosted 3 years ago
      DPC

      Not really, but I never got the Scooby Doo vibe – it’s certainly not self-aware or intentionally done. That’s “Boom Town” or “Love and Monsters” and those are nowhere near as good as “Animals”… whoops, I mean “Headhunter”…

      “Headhunter” had some novel ideas, the crew do something, the pacing is solid, there’s good tension that was long overdue in series 4, and – overall – good execution. I’m excited too. 🙂

  • Visit site
    July 30, 2014 5:41 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Rob

    I think too that this script was written for Cally originally? Jan pulled out quite late in the day (possibly after reading the dire script for ‘Animals’) and it was given to Dayna at the last minute. Bits of it might have worked had they used Soolin as the love interest instead.

  • Visit site
    July 30, 2014 5:44 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Robert

    Headhunter is great fun.

    • Visit site
      July 30, 2014 6:17 pmPosted 3 years ago
      DPC

      It’s got problems – like what TV stories don’t, hehe – but “Headhunter” is the turning point. I hope Sue won’t give up now, what with the first 5 episodes of series 4 being so off-kilter. Because there are a number of gems coming up…

  • July 30, 2014 5:45 pmPosted 3 years ago
    encyclops

    I found this less creepy when I was a kid than I do now. But I still found it super creepy. I think the difference then was that both Dayna and Justin just registered as “grownups” to me and I didn’t really spend much time thinking about how old they were relative to one another. I knew I found Justin super unattractive, but then my taste in men was pretty narrow back then and I was used to being baffled by other people’s. And then I was uncomfortable in general with sex/romance in the TV I was watching, so this ticked some of the same “generally unsavory” boxes as the kiss in “Power” and whatever the hell is going on in “Orbit.”

    Watching it in 2014, of course, it’s just unrelentingly gross from start to finish, and not just for the Dayna/Justin affair. Not that a show about people caught between a totalitarian regime and the ruthless terrorists attacking it should never be unrelentingly gross; arguably that’s exactly what it should be on a regular basis. But it doesn’t make for fun TV. Thank goodness everything else this season is at least decent.

    I love the “Orac’s girlfriend” observation. And, of course, “redacted.”

  • Visit site
    July 30, 2014 5:50 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Harriet

    If Sue used to be a hairdresser, how come she hasn’t yet mentioned Soolin’s most distinctive characteristic?

    • Visit site
      July 31, 2014 2:45 pmPosted 3 years ago
      John Miller

      Her tight trousers?

  • Visit site
    July 30, 2014 5:54 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Harriet

    One of the big mysteries of this episode is Justin’s claim that the Galactic War “was a terrible, terrible mistake”.

    I mean… I’m a pacifist, but is Justin saying that the Federation should have rolled over when the Andromedans invaded?

    • Visit site
      July 30, 2014 6:15 pmPosted 3 years ago
      NICK GRIFFITHS

      I’ve always taken that to be referring to “first contact”. That the federation did something to upset the Andromadans and create the need for the minefield. The aliens seem pretty bent on killing humanity… but it is never explained why. (In many ways HAD it been the Daleks as Terry wanted, it’d make a lot of sense).

    • Visit site
      July 30, 2014 6:26 pmPosted 3 years ago
      DPC

      Agreed! Self-defense isn’t pacifism, or maybe Justin knew something about the Andromedans… wait, that sort of big arcing sort of subterfuge might have worked in a show/series made in 1994 or later, not 1980 when everything was largely one-off and episodic. It’s just bad writing…

  • Visit site
    July 30, 2014 6:11 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Dave Sanders

    That crane shot at the end: Mary Ridge directed this episode. It was provably impossible to get her to stop giving a shit, and believe me they *tried* sometimes.

    • Visit site
      July 30, 2014 6:28 pmPosted 3 years ago
      DPC

      Mary Ridge rocked the house!

      • Visit site
        July 30, 2014 8:37 pmPosted 3 years ago
        Rob

        ‘Mary Ridge rocked the house!’

        Agreed 🙂 Not much that she could have done with a script like ‘Animals’ or ‘Terminus’ for that matter) but ‘Terminal’, ‘Rescue’, ‘Headhunter’ and the finale are all splendidly directed.

  • Visit site
    July 30, 2014 6:13 pmPosted 3 years ago
    DPC

    Sue, it’s only going to get better – far, far, FAR better – from here. The first 5 episodes were variable in quality, but – arguably – people will say that the 6th episode onward shows a continual uptick in quality.

    “they should have sent Tarrant instead. That would have been much more interesting. But either way, they should have ditched the randy teacher routine. It just isn’t right.”

    Bingo! 🙂

    Even with more age-appropriate Cally, credibility was stretched. At least Cally wouldn’t have been taken over by the incorporeal mindwarping critter of the week.

    And at least “Trial” had the Travis subplot to keep it going. The Zil subplot was embarrassing – it probably looked good on paper, though…

  • Visit site
    July 30, 2014 6:17 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Dave Sanders

    I bet Vere Lorrimar wished he had one of those chairs. “WE NEED MORE MONEY. WE NEED MORE MONEY. WE NEED MORE MONEY.”

  • Visit site
    July 30, 2014 7:26 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Amethyst

    I’m assuming the chair asked for its name to be taken off the credits.

    • Visit site
      July 30, 2014 7:41 pmPosted 3 years ago
      Dave Sanders

      It was jealous of the repeat fees the Robots Of Death sofa was earning. Last I heard it was approaching Tim’s throne from The Goodies to be its new agent; it was either that or Janet Fielding.

      • Visit site
        July 30, 2014 8:34 pmPosted 3 years ago
        Frankymole

        Given the theme of this episode we’re probably lucky they didn’t use Jim’ll Fix It’s gadget-laden cigar-dispensing chair.

        Cally can’t really have had a visiting tutor due to Auron’s isolationist policy, so it’s hard to see how it would’ve worked using Cally instead of Dayna.

        • Visit site
          August 2, 2014 1:21 pmPosted 3 years ago
          Lawrence McIlhoney

          I guess Justin would have been from Auron. But still. Ugh

  • Visit site
    July 30, 2014 8:02 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Anniew

    Whether or not there was a rendezvous at the Yew Tree, Justin is just so creepy that it worries me that adult Dayna is turned on by him. Of course she has been around Avon and Villa which may have warped her judgement but we do now have an explanation for the kiss in Aftermath. I love Og and would have loved him to join the crew( they need a pet) but he does seem to have been genetically modified with DNA from Julian Clary to judge from his reaction to capture. I’m so glad Cally bought it on Terminal ; she certainly did not deserve an episode like this ( an even more disturbing example of the alien possession thread- the child molestation possession). The episode does however contain the germ of an interesting idea about how far we should genetically engineer and I actually loved the Scorpio base scenes. Sue’s suggestion of a Justin/ Tarrant scenario has been explored in slash fic with Avon as the experienced ‘teacher’. That would have been an entertaining episode but better without the pedophile element. I’d still rather watch a repeat of Animals than sit through Traitor again because it appals but doesn’t drag.
    Outstanding trailer for Headhunter. O come on Dave. What’s not to like about it– it doesn’t have any Bernard Manning moments and it’s pacey, if
    preposterous and very funny. ( I admit sometimes unintentionally)

    • Visit site
      August 1, 2014 10:37 pmPosted 3 years ago
      Fiona

      If they’d used Jim’ll Fix It’s chair they could have just had Emu come along and bust it. Its still well worth watching the anarchy of Emu. I really wish that Paul Darrow, in character as Avon, had been confronted with Emu. How cool would that have been? would Emu have knocked Avon out of his go-go boots?

      That business with the chair…isnt it a bit like 1984 and the rats in the head cage? “Do it to Julia! Not me, to Julia!”

      Wait, Annie…what do you mean, a slashfic with Avon and Justin? As if slashfic wasnt horrid enough!

      actually everyone, interestingly, has been conditioned, I think, by years of paedophile hysteria to see this as really horrible. See, back then it wasnt such a big deal. You can see it wasnt or it would never have been made. and Sue often mentions Blake being ‘a convicted child-molester’ but you know, it wouldnt have been something you couldnt live down, especially if innocent. Now, you cant even be accused. God help you. Its so bad…saw a thing where they had 2 kid actors pretend to be lost and 600 people went past them: nobody dared touch them. A festival worker said that all her co-workers are warned: dont go near lost kids. Call the cops and keep an eye at a distance, but dont even go and talk to them.

      Fascinating how propaganda works on people. I remember when this old perv tried to molest me in the cinema, the usherette shone her torch at him, and he scrambled out, hastily trying to fasten his zip…its comical now to me…and she just like shrugged and said, “Well, he’s gone now…sit down and watch the rest of the film”and when I left instead, its not like anyone thought the guy might be waiting outside. These people…they are mostly more sad and pathetic than dangerous. The real horror stories are usually within families.
      So the idea Dayna might love her tutor wasnt so atrocious. Funny.

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        August 2, 2014 8:08 amPosted 3 years ago
        Anniew

        Sorry – bad tin tacks! I meant that there is slash out there that pairs a novice Tarrant with a sexually experienced Avon ( NOT Justin as Sue suggests) and for dodgy plot reasons Avon has to ‘teach’ Tarrant all he knows.

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          August 2, 2014 5:27 pmPosted 3 years ago
          Fiona

          oh thank God for that.

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        August 2, 2014 10:47 amPosted 3 years ago
        Anniew

        Darrow from a beautifully posed floor position but with rather wild hair, would have looked down his considerable nose at Emu and enunciated ‘Off’ in outraged tone while gesturing imperiously but somewhat unnecessarily to the elements. Villa, and Dayna would have leapt in and escorted it out at gunpoint but it would have got free of Dayna and persuaded Soolin to transport it to Scorpio by mimicking Tarrant’s voice. This would have been ‘ a hell of a stupid mistake’ as without its life support system ( it’s a puppet folks) which was not transported with it, it would be unable to sustain itself and it would end up looking like Kentucky fried turkey. ( please note that Soolin’s role was originally written for Cally )

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          August 2, 2014 5:29 pmPosted 3 years ago
          Fiona

          LOL!
          But a puppet! No way. You couldnt help but believe Emu was alive. It was the brilliant way Rod Hull could operate it while looking in completely the other direction.

          I reckon Emu would have gone for Avon. (and not in a slashfic sense).

      • August 3, 2014 7:02 pmPosted 3 years ago
        Andy Luke

        Avon Vs Emu, what a mad concept!

        Well said on all of that. There’s a tendency of people to hide behind blaming paedos for all suspicion of paedophilia, and just buy into whatever the press says, regardless of what they know about how evil the press have been in the past. I’ve seen friends have their lives wrecked because of false accusations of paedophilia, both in court, and on the street, were it’s life-threatening.

        When I watched this as a teen, Dayna annoyed me. Great actress but the root problem was her attitude to Servalan Re-watching Servalan at her old dirty tricks, requesting “Double X information with oral only”, threatening staff jobs, their families, electro-convulsive quizzes, I’m thinking Dayna might be the new Blake. Her blood vengeance buried and reduced to snide remarks through this torturous brainwash and conditioning. DAAAAAAYNAAAAAAAA!!!!

  • July 30, 2014 9:43 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Mat Dolphin

    And with Animals, we’re at the end of the dodgy episodes in season 4. After this, the writers buck their ideas up and work out what season 4 is all about.

    Animals is just terrible and I find it really painful viewing. I don’t like the ending and the whole thing just seems like a waste of time.

    Headhunter is the first in a long line of decent episodes (in my opinion there’s lots to enjoy from here onwards).

    I hope Sue hasn’t lost faith.

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    July 30, 2014 10:52 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Matt

    The worst story of Blake’s 7 ever!

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      July 30, 2014 11:43 pmPosted 3 years ago
      Frankymole

      I take it you haven’t heard “The Syndeton Experiment”, then?

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        July 31, 2014 12:38 amPosted 3 years ago
        NICK GRIFFITHS

        Please! Don’t remind me of that shite….

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          July 31, 2014 2:08 amPosted 3 years ago
          Dave Sanders

          The Sevenfold Crown is worse. It’s longer.

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    July 31, 2014 12:06 amPosted 3 years ago
    Dave Sanders

    If we’re shite like Animals, we die like Animals.

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      August 2, 2014 1:22 pmPosted 3 years ago
      Lawrence McIlhoney

      I see what you did there 🙂

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    July 31, 2014 12:32 amPosted 3 years ago
    The Grouchybeast

    While I do believe that every episode of B7 is perfect, I’m afraid I have to leave it up to other people to explain the perfection of Animals. (Although I do know someone who loves it.)

    I mean…genetic experimentation, mind control, and Federation minions. This episode is full of things I love in a plot, and it still makes me cringe.

  • July 31, 2014 12:38 amPosted 3 years ago
    Chris Allen

    “and how they are currently scouring the galaxy, recruiting experts to help them in their never-ending war against the Federation”

    I remember Paul Darrow saying pretty much the same thing in an interview leading up to the transmission of series 4. Well, they’re not doing too well so far.

    Forbus: Dead
    Dr. Plaxton: Dead
    Justin: Dead

    If I were a scientist (mad or otherwise) I’d steer well clear of this lot.

    Vena, if I were you I’d triple any insurance you have on your significant other before the Scorpio crew arrive for the next episode.

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      August 1, 2014 2:03 pmPosted 3 years ago
      Ann worrall

      One of the three was hanging in to life by a thread in dreadful agony. One was living with a gang of homicidal rapists and one was alone with only Ewok hatstands, unsavoury memories and fantasies for company. I imagine death was a preferable option.

  • July 31, 2014 12:56 amPosted 3 years ago
    Eric Kerpin

    To bid farewell to Allan Prior, I feel we need to see his daughter in action one last time:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cVsEJytTP2U

    You’re welcome.

    • July 31, 2014 2:30 amPosted 3 years ago
      encyclops

      YouTube isn’t allowed to show me that video, but I feel dumb for having had no idea they were related. I have to figure a 50-minute Steeleye Span video would be better than “Animals.”

      • July 31, 2014 10:32 amPosted 3 years ago
        Eric Kerpin

        Youtube has done you a favour. It’s Status Quo and Maddy Prior – together at last!

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    July 31, 2014 4:04 amPosted 3 years ago
    Marcus Sheppard

    ANIMALS is badly acted,
    Badly written and badly directed
    Justin’s a paedo
    But what we want to know
    Is what is the show that’s redacted?!

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      August 11, 2014 10:40 pmPosted 3 years ago
      Supersynths

      Justin is not a paedo. Do you actually know what that word means? Paedophiles are attracted to children, i.e. those that have not yet reached puberty. It is patently obvious that any relationship between Danya and Justin would have happened in her late teens. Now whatever your views on that, that does not make him a paedo. That word is banded around too much these days, and a lot of the time, incorrectly.

      Now before I get my head ripped off, I deplore ALL forms of sexual abuse – it’s inexcusable, but to accuse someone of something that is untrue is also inexcusable.

      Danya was obviously fine with the relationship (even if Justin as her tutor should have been more responsible), as she knowingly smiles at his name at the start of the episode and appears to be distraught at his death. And before people say that she was taken advantage of, I think Dayna has a strong enough character to fend off unwanted male attention if she wants to, after all, she has no problem brushing Vila off.

      The only inappropriate thing in this episode is that Justin is still interested in Dayna, where as she is no longer interested in him – due mainly to his experiments.

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        August 11, 2014 11:03 pmPosted 3 years ago
        Nick

        A very good point and well said.

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        August 12, 2014 1:01 amPosted 3 years ago
        Anniew

        13 is the cut off age for a sex offence against a young person to be classed as paedophilia. . But if an older man starts to ‘groom’ a prepubescent but does not have sex with them until they are older than 13 – surely that could be considered paedophilic? The argument that Dayna is willing does not apply if she was groomed as this is a form of auto suggestion practised on the child before he/she has the sexual or emotional maturity to make an informed choice.

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          August 12, 2014 7:40 pmPosted 3 years ago
          Supersynths

          Totally accept your point Annie, but I can’t see any evidence of grooming within the script of the actual episode, or Dayna and Justin’s back story. They must have met for the first time when Dayna was in her late teens. Now I’m willing to be corrected on this and will hold my hands up if I’m wrong – my B7 knowledge isn’t as extensive as some of you good people on this site.

          I also find it socially interesting that an older man who pursues younger women/late teen girls is now a ‘creepy paedo,’ and someone to be despised, where as an older woman who pursues younger men/late teen boys is a ‘cougar,’ and that’s completely acceptable and socially ok.

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            August 12, 2014 10:08 pmPosted 3 years ago
            Anniew

            Yep. The older woman can apparently teach the young man everything she knows and so make a man of him. And if the older man is hot we almost expect him to hit on the young hot girl and for her to respond. Double standards.

            The only reason for thinking Dayna was groomed is that she’s lived a very sheltered life on Sarran and her tutor is At Least twenty plus years older than her cos Justin seems in his 50s. There can be very little informed choice on Dayna’s part if she fell for him even if she was over 18. ( emotionally she seems much younger) or even if she was just ‘curious’ and he satisfied it and although these things happen they really shouldn’t. She also seems fairly experienced sexually to judge by her reaction to the Ultra’s demands which is odd given her sheltered life and suggest she may have been conditioned in some way.

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    July 31, 2014 6:58 amPosted 3 years ago
    Anniew

    I wouldn’t mind a bit of whatever Prior’s daughter’s on. Or even a brief session in Dayna’s chair. All around my house lies the detritus left by Grandchildren and I can’t face rising and cleaning. Where’s the adrenalin and soma when you need it?

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    July 31, 2014 10:59 amPosted 3 years ago
    Ramiste

    Right…. is no one else going to say it… Justin *is* Professor Richard Dawkins!!!111

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      July 31, 2014 4:04 pmPosted 3 years ago
      Ann worrall

      I know he’s dodgy about what constitutes rape but none of his wives were child brides. Is there evidence that he targeted his younger students with misplaced affection?

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        August 1, 2014 11:03 pmPosted 3 years ago
        Fiona

        Is he dodgy on rape, didnt know that! Ramiste is right…Justin does look like Dawkins!

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    July 31, 2014 11:32 amPosted 3 years ago
    Nico

    Not only perverted and creepy, but soooo boring it was the only ep I fast-forwarded. Though I came very close at the beginning of Sarcophagus.

    Once at the cinema there was a trailer for a film which had won the Palme d’Or – except they spelled it Palme d’Og. I laughed but no one else got it.

    This ep and the three Steed ones are prime contenders for the award. [opens envelope during drum roll] Yes, the Palme d’Og goes to… ANIMALS!

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      August 1, 2014 9:04 pmPosted 3 years ago
      Dan

      For me it’s Harvests of Kairos, easily the worst directed Steed episode, though you can’t beat hours next one for dodginess. Maybe Animals suffers from being the worst following a long run of bad episodes.

      Has everyone forgotten The Web? Animals is strangely similar. The Web is better though.

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        August 2, 2014 5:26 pmPosted 3 years ago
        Fiona

        I said just the same thing. The Web. But the Web creatures squealing was unbearable. Still it had some great Avon-and-Blake stuff. “They’re going to kill a whole species!” “Ah, well, if it concerns you…”

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          August 3, 2014 1:59 amPosted 3 years ago
          Dan

          For me Animals is bad in a much more tedious way. 🙂

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        August 5, 2014 5:30 pmPosted 3 years ago
        Marky Mark

        Unfortunately, as I’ve considered Bs 7 to be generally very disappointing, I think most of the episodes are shit so can easily remember the good ones (e.g. Star One) 🙂

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    July 31, 2014 1:11 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Sean Alexander

    If Og is to to Blakes 7 what the Taran wood beast is to Doctor Who, then the main plot about Humbert Humbert and Dayna is as lechery as any ‘flirting’ would have been between Capaldi and Jenna Coleman if the former Malcolm Tucker hadn’t put his (booted) foot down.

    Getting tired of saying it but this show has been seriously treading water since Terminal. It’s almost as though the production team never expected to be recommissioned for a fourth series…

    Headhunter next, and I at least have memories of that one – good or bad doesn’t really come into it.

    PS Animals rates so lowly in Miwk’s ‘Maximum Power!’ that they appear to have deliberately excised its existence from the writers’ memory. And seeing as they made up their own episodes says everything.

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      August 25, 2014 11:08 pmPosted 3 years ago
      Jess Patton

      They didn’t expect a fourth series. When series 3 was written it was on the understanding that it would be the last series. The first the cast and crew heard about a series four was from the continuity announcer after the final episode of series 3 was broadcast since one of the BBC higher-up’s enjoyed the final episode so much he phoned up and demanded a fourth series. It was pretty much forced on them.

  • July 31, 2014 2:46 pmPosted 3 years ago
    encyclops

    any ‘flirting’ would have been between Capaldi and Jenna Coleman if the former Malcolm Tucker hadn’t put his (booted) foot down

    Is that a fact? Were they seriously considering that?

    • July 31, 2014 2:48 pmPosted 3 years ago
      Neil Perryman (Author)

      No.

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        July 31, 2014 3:08 pmPosted 3 years ago
        Ann worrall

        Thank Gawd for that! Hated all that lovey dovey sexy stuff between the Doctor and his female companions. Looking forward so much to a return of an alien scary serious Doctor.

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          August 5, 2014 5:24 pmPosted 3 years ago
          Marky Mark

          Thank fuck for that. I’m with you, Ann, 100%. All that creepy, ridiculous Doctor/companion bollocks started with the dreadful American TV Movie, & it’s been kept in ever since. Yuk !

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            August 5, 2014 8:38 pmPosted 3 years ago
            Anniew

            I couldn’t disagree with you more about Blakes 7 which I love but agree with you 120% about the crappy Who movie ( which I was so looking forward to). Loved Ecclestone but in my opinion it went downhill from there ( apart from Tom Baker cameo which made me cry). Took itself far too seriously and the sappy stuff with the companions drove me mad. Some great villains but too much Doctor as God.

      • Visit site
        July 31, 2014 8:54 pmPosted 3 years ago
        Sean Alexander

        Capaldi was quoted in last Sunday Times’ interview that the kind of relationship between the new Doctor and Clara would see ‘no flirting, that’s for sure’ and that his adamant stance on this had ‘seen some resistance at first’. So I think that means he put his foot down, whether the production team had already decided on that or not.

        • August 3, 2014 7:10 pmPosted 3 years ago
          Andy Luke

          I’d wager a bet that came out of him being asked that by a nymphomaniac media rather than any intention. Why would it even be under discussion given the possibilities?

          I hope there is some mildly fun flirting from Clara late in Capaldi’s run. Help the Aged, right?

  • Visit site
    July 31, 2014 3:33 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Robert Rowles

    Right, I agree, this is rubbish. But, after reading some of the more or less positive comments here, I’ve just rewatched Headhunter and – other than the lack of a paedophile subtext – I can’t see any evidence of improvement. And as for Assassin, in some respects that’s the worst of the three. Games: that’s the first really good episode of the season for me. Belkov and Gambit are great. Not sure Sue will like them though.

    • July 31, 2014 11:48 pmPosted 3 years ago
      encyclops

      I guess it shouldn’t surprise me that Season 4 is so contentious. I like “Headhunter,” I love “Assassin,” and I can’t for the life of me remember anything remotely appealing about “Games.”

      • Visit site
        August 1, 2014 12:16 pmPosted 3 years ago
        Rob

        ‘I can’t for the life of me remember anything remotely appealing about “Games.”’

        Gorgeous location footage (the sun was actually shining this time round), huge explosions that you wouldn’t get on any other UK telly show and Belkov’s final goodbye to Gambit. I love ‘Games’ but I’m jumping ahead somewhat.

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        August 1, 2014 12:21 pmPosted 3 years ago
        Harriet

        Vila’s on good form in Games.

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    July 31, 2014 7:46 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Amethyst

    I’m with Robert in thinking the run of good S.4 episodes begins with ‘Games’. Having said that I love ‘Headhunter’ to bits, though probably not for the right reasons.

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    July 31, 2014 8:33 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Anniew

    Animals= interesting idea, unlikely, creepy subtext, a plot of two halves, a lot of exposition, feeble menace
    Headhunter= implausible, action packed, witty, tense, interesting idea, some genuine threat.

    Headhunter by a country mile. ( what is a country mile by the by and does it differ from a city mile?)

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      August 1, 2014 1:33 amPosted 3 years ago
      Frankymole

      A country mile is slang for “a very long way” because when you ask directions in the country, the local yokel tells you “it’s a mile that way” and it turns out to be more like ten.

      • Visit site
        August 1, 2014 9:14 amPosted 3 years ago
        Anniew

        Thank you.

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    July 31, 2014 10:35 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Jason

    A lot of people are saying Animals is the worst of Blake’s 7. While I’m not sure it’s worse than Dawn of the Gods, I definitely struggled to stay awake through this one. Completely killed my love for Dayna.

    • July 31, 2014 11:43 pmPosted 3 years ago
      encyclops

      Yes, in the whole Soolin vs. Dayna debate it might very well be Dayna’s taste in men that tips the balance in Soolin’s favor. Certainly it’s uncomfortable to think about being Justin Mk II.

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        August 1, 2014 12:27 pmPosted 3 years ago
        Harriet

        And Soolin, to the best of my recollection, manages to avoid being kissed by Avon. Possibly his fourth-season bouffant hair helped her to abstain. She’s obviously a woman who knows what’s what when it comes to hairstyles.

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          August 1, 2014 12:29 pmPosted 3 years ago
          Harriet

          On the other hand, Josette Simon is the most beautiful woman in any B7 crew, if not the entire show – don’t think even Jacqueline Pearce can challenge her, and off the top of my head I can’t think of a guest who might.

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      August 1, 2014 1:32 amPosted 3 years ago
      Frankymole

      This episode may just be the reason that Josette Simon avoids B7 like the plague…

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        August 1, 2014 11:10 pmPosted 3 years ago
        Fiona

        I read that she does so but no reason given. Does anyone know why she doesnt want to be associated with it? Does she really think its so bad?

        And agree with Harriet, most stunning, even more than totally gorgeous Jenna and well more than Servalan who always seems too hard and sculpted. Striking, yes, beautiful, no. Doesnt beauty need a quality of vulnerability, or damage, or just something that reminds you it’s very transient….a la Avon…although he seems to have a got a good long spell out of those looks.

        In fact. he still looks good now….

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    July 31, 2014 10:52 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Sally M

    I think the consensus for what, 30-plus years? – has been that Animals is the worst of the worst of the very very worst…

    But I do like Og.

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    July 31, 2014 11:33 pmPosted 3 years ago
    JarrickA

    This one is bad but Moloch, Harvest Kairos, and Voices From The Past (only due to Travis in bandages though, that killed the story) are worse. Though not by much. TV script submissions had to be so bad the 80s because I am still trying to figure out how a story with a pedophile was considered one of the 13 best scripts of that year!

    • Visit site
      August 1, 2014 11:05 amPosted 3 years ago
      Anniew

      I think Dayna was meant to be about 18 when she met Justin. Still abuse of teacher student relationship but if Justin was more attractive…. I mean there wasn’t a great outcry when she kissed Avon. If he was charismatic and suffered beautifully this episode might have worked. It’s the fact that NOBODY, male, female, young,old, finds Justin in the least attractive that scuppers it. And makes Dayna seem like a complete disturbed weirdo. I don’t find Tarrant or Villa MUCH of a turn on but in ‘snog, marry, push off a cliff’ stakes between them and Justin, it’s a no-brainer. Justin for the cliff every time.

      • Visit site
        August 1, 2014 12:32 pmPosted 3 years ago
        Harriet

        I agree that there are double standards here, but Dayna is at least twenty-two when she kisses Avon – it’s consistently stated in Aftermath that the Mellanbys spent more than twenty years on Sarran.

      • Visit site
        August 1, 2014 12:34 pmPosted 3 years ago
        Harriet

        (So yes, entirely possible that she was eighteen when she met Justin.)

      • Visit site
        August 1, 2014 2:25 pmPosted 3 years ago
        frankymole

        Maybe he had a beautiful soul. It’s not all about looks and angst!

        • Visit site
          August 1, 2014 6:51 pmPosted 3 years ago
          Anniew

          Charisma and sex appeal are not dependent on looks. Peter Capaldi’s no looker but boy is he charismatic. And just where is the evidence in the episode of Justin’s beautiful soul? If he has one it’s buried pretty deep.

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    August 1, 2014 11:11 amPosted 3 years ago
    Anniew

    And just to make clear – I’m not saying that would make the episode right .

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    August 1, 2014 10:01 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Fiona

    Will forgive this episode everything for the resurrection of Avon as beautiful again, idolizably beautiful. When Vila descended into that tank there was a look on his face, Avon’s I mean, that was just devastating. And his hair, its ok! also, liked the little Macbeth quip. I bet Paul Darrow put that in himself: “It’s not fair”/”Looks pretty foul, actually”.

    “A cross between a Yeti and a hatstand”, lol. But havent we seen this before, really, with The Web? At least the hatstands didnt have voices that made you want them to be killed.

    and nice point about physical attraction Annie. It’s absolutely true. We just dont want the icky idea that Teacher thin-lips might have been dreaming about putting said thin lips on delectable nubile Dayna. If Teacher had been devastating Avon, now…that’s why guys like Avon cant become teachers. Dont Stand Too Close To Me, remember that, Sting was a teacher after all, cool and hot teacher. Must have had lots of hassle to have written that song.

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    August 1, 2014 11:19 pmPosted 3 years ago
    wyngatecarpenter

    I’m with the majority here , a bad combination of tedious and creepy. Even if we ignore the age thing they would still make a very odd couple. The bit where Justin says “let me look at you” and gives that chuckle is probably the most cringey moment in B7. I still think Dawn Of The Gods is worse, at least this seems to have been written for actual B7 characters, even if Jan Chappell’s departure meant that it’s not written for the character it’s meant for. I thought Stardrive was worse but it is arguably more entertaining than this (not much though).
    Having watched The Invasion, I’m puzzled as to why Kevin Stoney has been wasted not once but twice in minor cameo appearances in B7. The scene that he appears in is as much padding as the “hilarious” Vila goes in the gunk tank scene. As for that scene Soolin even points out that it’s typecasting.
    Speaking of Soolin, was there any point in writing her into the series other than to make up 7 and look pretty.
    Headhunter is better, but not by very much. In fact nearly the whole of season 4 feels like a long comedown. The only good episodes are Orbit, the good but not classic Traitor and possibly the last episode. I once though Assassin was ok, but then I watched it again.

    • Visit site
      August 2, 2014 1:41 pmPosted 3 years ago
      Rob

      ‘Gold’ is probably one of the finest ever episodes of Blake’s 7 not to mention Sand and i would say that Soolin has more of a character than Jenna did, she also gets some very good lines. Your totally wrong about season 4 – the second half of it was years ahead of its time.

      • Visit site
        August 2, 2014 2:15 pmPosted 3 years ago
        Mat Dolphin

        The second half of series four reminds me of Firefly. Also, there’s a scene in Power that is virtually copied in the film Serenity.

        • August 2, 2014 2:19 pmPosted 3 years ago
          Neil Perryman (Author)

          Whedon says he’s never watched Blake’s 7. Or Doctor Who.

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            August 13, 2014 10:53 amPosted 3 years ago
            Anniew

            Whedon says a lot of things!

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    August 1, 2014 11:20 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Doloho

    My main problem with this episode is that nothing happened. Everyone ended up in the exact same place that they started. The Blake Gang came to that planet to get another expert… total fail. Serva… Sleer is the only one who advance her plot a bit. She now knows that Avon has a ship she really really wants now. (So, really just rebooted back to Series 2). I want to see PURPOSE and a PLAN! I hope the rest of Series 4 gets better real soon!

    • Visit site
      August 2, 2014 8:30 amPosted 3 years ago
      Anniew

      Avon does have a plan, but it may be one you won’t enjoy and it’s not so clearly spelled out as Blake’s. He has a base that he is going to make impregnable ( Villa – if the Federation keep expanding at this rate you won’t have as much time as you thought. Avon – I won’t run Villa ) In order to do this he will need scientific experts to give him tactical and technological advantages ( which he may in time sell to others as he planed to do with his ‘gadget’, the cloaking device), supplies, weapons and allies so he is powerful enough to keep the Federation at bay. He and his crew will then be safe. It’s not heroic but Avon has never been one for causes- this is his version of ‘so rich that no-one could touch us.’ His look to Villa probably denotes the same mix of feelings he had for Blake – how did I get saddled with this idiot for a companion, why do I feel responsible for keeping him alive, do I need him?

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    August 1, 2014 11:25 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Fiona

    Also, there’s some other Avon/Vila vibe. What is going on there? Some of the Blake intensity seems to have transferred.

    When Avon sent Vila down a second time into that pit and told him, sounding like a headmaster, he could have ‘half a glass’ of wine and Vila bitched and said couldnt he have it first…that part? When Vila descends the camera lingers on Avon and there’s a curious look on his face..its one of those unreadable, intriguing and complex looks he used to get all the time around Blake.
    and now he doesnt get them, he’s just looking cold and hard and barking out orders, so that kind of pulled me up…what is that about?

    • August 3, 2014 7:15 pmPosted 3 years ago
      Andy Luke

      The Vila/Tarrant/Avon oil-swim scene made me think how much this changed since Gareth Thomas’ early days. From rugged malcontent to chuckling adventure jobbers, it was always painful to watch Thomas embrace the former.

      Some nice flash effects early on in Tarrant Vs The Feds. He can be quite pleasant when on his own, If he’s Avon, Slave is his seedier Vila.

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        August 4, 2014 5:02 pmPosted 3 years ago
        Fiona

        I totally dont agree. I thought mostly Gareth was very good, he just needed a bit more fire at times and to be fair, Avon gets all the cool lines. But Avon and Blake together, has intensity that left with Gareth. I often go back to things like the start of Redemption: its so good, Avon provoking Blake apparently to the point of hitting him, and then flinging his arms to save Blake when the ship is hit.

        What does rugged mean, anyway? Its like ‘dystopian’ or ‘post-modern’ or ‘holistic’: nobody knows. I saw where they asked 50 movers and shakers in the arts, what is post-modernism and: nobody knew.

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    August 2, 2014 1:16 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Lawrence McIlhoney

    Yeah, even as a child, this episode was cringe worthy. The worst thing is seeing a character with integrity such as Dayna being written as a big blouse. It actually doesn’t matter (well, ok it does a bit) that Justin’s an old man – it would still be wrong for her character if he was her age. A bit like at the end of Rescue where she clings to Tarrant and wails that there’s “something there!” and it’s a dilapidated Sea Devil. I like cool Dayna, not wimpy Dayna.

    Mind you, we had just emerged from the 70s and women were still viewed as being no more than a metre from a kitchen or a dolls’ house …

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    August 3, 2014 2:03 pmPosted 3 years ago
    azure711

    Has anyone else noticed the weird audio at the very end of this episode?

  • August 3, 2014 7:19 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Andy Luke

    “What are those animals?”

    People Against Goodness And Normalcy. Good evening PAGANs, don’t forget your goat leggings! Her teacher,Peter Byrne (as Justin) as Christopher Plummer’s Reverend Jonathan Whirley: grey hair to a side, shiny cheeks, that same left eyebrow curl, hairy eyebrows and preacher cloak. Just don’t try to pretend Dayna is anything like the Virgin Connie Swail.

    Acording to the Sesame Street database though, the horned Animals are Frazzle and Mel. Or Fraggle Rock’s Gorgs. Giant furries you’ve to get past them to get the talking trash heap (which knows were the story goes)

    We’re all being a bit hard on this, no? Compared with the Space Rats show, this is great. The plot relies on confidence and movement, short scenes moving along. Shame about the too-handy ends-with-a-victim stuff.

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    August 5, 2014 8:28 amPosted 3 years ago
    Nick

    It’s official: I have no words!

    This one wouldn’t make the cut (or rather it WOULD be cut) from my hypothetical, boiled-down version of Seasons 1 to 4 of B7.

    Creepy doesn’t cover it.

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    August 5, 2014 5:32 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Marky Mark

    Did anyone else notice Justin (what sort of a name for a scientist is that lol ?!) had his body dumped on the same bit of AstroTurf that Tom Baker regenerated on ? LMFAO !

    And I did actually laugh out loud when Avon kicked over that chair – so manly, not !

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