Roj Blake

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Roj Blake
Blake's 7 character
First appearance The Way Back
Last appearance

Star One (Regular)

Terminal (Cameo)

Blake (Guest appearance)
Portrayed by Gareth Thomas
Information
Species Human
Gender Male
Affiliation Resistance

Roj Blake is a fictional character from the British science fiction television series Blake's 7, played by Gareth Thomas (in the new B7 audio series, Blake is played by Derek Riddell).

A native of Earth, Roj Blake was a leading voice against the corrupt, oppressive Terran Federation approximately four years before the series began. He was captured by Federation forces, led by Space Commander Travis, and his resistance group were massacred (Seek-Locate-Destroy). Blake was subsequently brainwashed into denouncing his resistance activities, stripped of his memory of the events and placed back into society as an "ideal model citizen" to break the morale of the resistance. His brother and sister were sent to a distant planet but executed on arrival. Forged tapes were sent to Blake periodically to sustain the illusion that they were alive.

In the first episode of the series, "The Way Back", Blake was approached by members of a new resistance organisation preparing to strike against the Federation once more. As Blake took time to consider the revelations about his past, he witnessed the massacre of the group by Federation troops. Captured once again, the authorities hatched a plan to discredit him by framing him for child molestation and having him sentenced to life on the prison planet Cygnus Alpha. However, during the journey, Blake escaped aboard an abandoned highly advanced spacecraft, the Liberator, with Jenna Stannis and Kerr Avon. He continued on to Cygnus Alpha, recruiting Olag Gan and Vila Restal into the group. By the end of the first series, his group had grown with the addition of the telepathic alien Cally and the super-computer Orac.

These resources gave Blake an unprecedented ability to oppose the Federation. Initially committed to freedom with noble intentions, he began to show increasing levels of stress (Horizon, Voice From the Past) and to become more fanatical. Blake began to focus on destroying the Federation's Control centre, the computers controlling climate and commerce for hundreds of worlds. His first attempt was also his first major failure—an attack on Earth's Forbidden Zone at the location publicly advertised as Control that turned out to be an empty room. It was revealed that the real control was somewhere secret and that the advertised location was bait for potential rebels. This failure resulted in the death of Olag Gan.

When Blake finally found Star One, he discovered that Travis had betrayed humanity to the Andromedans. He subsequently ordered his crew to stop the sabotage so that humanity would have the resource of Star One to fight off the invasion. He also asked Avon to use the Liberator to hold off the invasion fleet until the Federation arrived. Arguably, the events in Star One represented his ultimate triumph as the Federation won a pyrrhic victory in the intergalactic war that severely reduced their power.

Blake disappeared during the Andromedan War and Avon assumed nominal command of the Seven. Avon would continue to search for Blake, sometimes with disastrous results (Terminal). In the series finale, Avon revealed that he had earlier discovered that Blake was alive and living as a bounty hunter on the planet Gauda Prime. In an attempt to recruit Blake for his purposes, Avon and his team travelled to Gauda Prime but their ship was damaged by security forces prior to arrival and the crew was forced to abandon it. Tarrant, the ship's pilot, successfully crash landed on the planet. Blake encountered Tarrant when examining the crashed vessel, but did not reveal that he was using the guise of a bounty hunter so that he could test those who claim to be against the Federation all the while running a large anti-Federation recruitment campaign on Gauda Prime. However, Tarrant escaped Blake's custody before Blake could explain everything to him. Unfortunately, Tarrant informed Avon of what he believed to be Blake's betrayal. Avon did not wait for an explanation and shot Blake dead. Avon and the Seven were subsequently surrounded by Federation troops led by Arlen, Blake's confidant. Arlen explained that Blake "said he could no longer tell who was Federation and who wasn't. He was right. He couldn't." This revealed that Arlen herself was a Federation spy who secretly knew Blake's real agenda.

Blake's death[edit]

Gareth Thomas wished to kill off Blake without any doubt. It was in his contract for that episode. At his request, Avon was to use a different type of gun, not a gun that could be mistaken for a stun ray. Also, upon being shot, lots of blood would be shown along with Blake's dead body. Blake's death was gorier than is normal for BBC television at the timeslot. Fan theories persist that this may have been the Blake clone seen in the second series episode Weapon, but Blake's actions and the fact that he knew about Jenna do not support this. The fate of the Blake clone, in fact, is unknown, and it was mentioned in the episode Children of Auron that the Clonemasters had been destroyed.