Villordsutch reacts to the news that Blake’s 7 returning to the small screen for a remake of the classic British sci-fi series….
If you don’t already know FremantleMedia International are creating a new and rehashed version of Blake’s 7 over in the U.S. for the SyFy channel. If you missed that news go and have a looksie here.
Now initially when I heard this news I rolled my eyes and instantly thought of the U.S.A. attempt at Red Dwarf and also the FOX network Doctor Who travesty, “HALF HUMAN! WT Actual F!”. Then however, I considered what the U.S. has brought to us – (New) Battlestar Galactica, Lost, Fringe, Breaking Bad, Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead, The X-Files and even Stargate SG-1 (except season 1). There are a few good writers out there across the pond, so perhaps I should learn to breathe and centre my inner calm.
Let me take you back. As I child I was very lucky to have a father that adored science fiction programmes and he also enjoyed making me watch programmes with anti-establishment messages tucked away insideof them, e.g. The Prisoner (repeats), Spitting Image and Boys from the Blackstuff. Imagine this child barely out of his toddler phase learning how to say “No!” to those in charge. Now, one of my favourite shows which liked to stick in to the government was Blake’s 7.
Blake’s 7 to me as a child was worryingly excellent. I was very young, around five, when my dad introduced me to Blake and his band of thieves, cowards and killers. Here I was watching Anti-Doctor Who. None of the crew could be trusted and I thought Avon was brilliant even though Blake constantly was watching his back. Avon was wearing black leather and he was wicked – he spent one episode searching for Vila to throw him off the ship, into space, to save his own skin! How could I hold him up as a hero! People in the crew were leaving or being killed. Crew members would sometimes run away rather than fight, yet all through this Blake’s underlying raison d’être was to disrupt and bring into the light the evil government, and at the head of it, Servalan, who at the time was a dads favourite.
About 20 years ago I had the chance to re-watch the entire show on video and while there were some right stinkers in the episode list and Blake seemed to spend nearly every episode sleeping it was still great. Even then watching the final episode again, it left me in a moment of quiet as it had back when I was 5 and I looked at my dad wondering why the heroes had lost.
The show is still great. Even the old adage of, “You can never go back”* doesn’t stick with Blake’s 7 – you can go back. Sure the special effects can look a wee bit rubbish, but remember this show is nearly hitting its 40th birthday. Now someone in America (Joe Pokaski of Heroes fame) plans to make it anew. Why some people feel they need to go back and mess with my memories I have no idea, but I am holding my anger and lashings of disappointment until they decide to cast Justin Bieber as Avon. Then I’ll kick off…
What are your thoughts on the Blake’s 7 remake? Let us know in the comments below…
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