July 20, 2024

Gabbing Geek

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Blake’s 7 “Moloch”

The Liberator runs into problems on an invisible planet.

For the previous episode, I said artificial planets are generally bad things.

Invisible planets might not be much better.

Yes, the Liberator nearly ran into an invisible planet.  The whole thing is being shielded by some kind of energy barriers, things that would make light and anything else hard to get through.  Tarrant wants to check it out.  Avon thinks its a bad idea.  So, I am guessing it is Tarrant’s turn to screw things up.  It’s either him or Avon usually.

It turns out there is a reason to go down there:  Servalan is there, so why not try to kill her?

That sure sounds dark.

Anyway, Orac does find a way down without being spotted:  teleport Vila and Tarrant to a transport ship headed there.  Tarrant wants to go, and Vila has to go to unlock a door.  Vila never quite gets that done, but it’s for a good reason:  someone found him!

But these guys are friendly.  Apparently, the guys there were locked up in a prison and assumed Vila was one of them.  Why are they going to the invisible planet Sardos?  They’re going to be starship captains!

Wait, what?

Yeah, it turns out there’s problems on Sardos, and Servalan isn’t it.  She’s almost a victim.  See, these guys have a machine that can copy anything.  Several actually.  Who built them?  Probably the original inhabitants.  Those guys apparently had plans to evolve themselves to what a computer said they would be many, many, many years in the future.  A Federation ship crashed there, and some of the mid-level leaders took over with plans to copy Servalan’s ship, using the copied mind of a trained captain to make a bunch of prisoners smart enough to do the job of starship captain without the years and years of training and experience.

Huh.  That’s rather clever.  Where’d they get a captain since Servalan’s people are not that good?  Oh yeah.  Tarrant got captured (again?) because it turned out Vila and the guys on the prison ship got along just fine.  Nice to be appreciated and all.  Those guys even found a woman for Vila!

It’s Servalan.

The two almost work together, or at least long they do enough for Servalan to get a gun and slip back to her ship with what’s left of her crew.

By then, Dayna and Avon teleported down.  They got captured because…well, the show may be consistent in letting Tarrant get captured when he tires to do something stupidly noble, but it also tends to forget that Dayna can kick a lot of ass when it’s narratively convenient.  That does mean Avon gets tortured, but that lasts until Vila and Tarrant can find them.

There’s, like, a lot of creepy stuff on this planet, so kudos to everyone involved for making this planet be really, really wrong.

I don’t even know if the creepiest thing is the guy in the wall or the guy running the duplicator.

No, wait, it’s the guy in the duplicator, a tiny little man with one eye and a white mustache.  Avon found him, pointing out that this unfortunate thing is what happens when you let a computer redesign your body.  That dingus is Moloch, and he was secretly behind the whole thing.

Then he decides to teleport to the Liberator to take on Cally.  That…doesn’t work because that dingus didn’t know he couldn’t live without the computer he was staying inside.  Oh, and that duplicator sure is handy for replacing all the lost teleportation bracelets.

Yeah, another twisty trip through the world of Blake’s 7.  One odd thing:  Servalan shows up with a fleet to corner the Liberator, so the heroes just…fly away?  Um, OK.  I guess they weren’t that surrounded, and it felt more like something that happened when they ran out of time for the episode. Maybe they didn’t need to bring Servalan back for this.  She caused enough trouble for one episode.