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|Blake's 7 character|
Jacqueline Pearce as Servalan
|Portrayed by||Jacqueline Pearce|
Servalan is a fictional character in the BBC science fiction television series Blake's 7, played by Jacqueline Pearce (in the new B7 audio series, Servalan is played by Daniela Nardini). She was the principal villain of the series. Her creator Terry Nation originally intended her to make a single appearance but she finally appeared in all four series, the only guest character to do so.
Servalan first appears as the Supreme Commander of the Terran Federation, in charge of the Federation's military force. She is principally concerned with organising efforts to destroy Blake and crush resistance to the Federation's rule. She is quickly revealed to be a cold, calculating, ruthless sociopath who is not above using her sex appeal and charm to get what she wants. Over the course of the series, she goes so far as to sacrifice entire planets to advance her ambitions.
Just before the Andromedan Invasion, as Star One begins to fail, she stages a military coup and becomes President of the Federation. After the Intergalactic War, she begins concentrating her efforts on capturing the powerful Liberator in order to cement her position. However, her rule is unstable. At least one coup ("Rumours of Death") almost topples her. During this time, she develops an intriguing adversarial chemistry with Avon, who respects her ruthlessness but distrusts her. They spend the second half of the series alternately flirting and trying to kill each other.
After successfully capturing the Liberator at Terminal, only to have to abandon it shortly after due to structural failure, she is deposed and becomes a fugitive from Federation justice. She builds power again under the alias Commissioner Sleer, killing at least 29 people to protect herself and her identity, including the blind Ardus. She was not seen in the series finale and was presumably still rebuilding her power base.
In the novel Lucifer by Paul Darrow, set 20 years after the events of Gauda Prime, Avon and Servalan have their final confrontation. Servalan is killed by Avon's lover before Avon escapes and recovers Orac.
During the episode "Sand", Servalan reveals to Tarrant that she had one romantic interest in her life, Don Keller. When he left her in their youth, "power became my lover" and she began her ascent up the Federation ranks. Tarrant and Servalan have a minor romantic fling; however, this lasts only as long as it takes for Servalan to discover how to survive their predicament.
Avon has a contentious relationship with Servalan in season three. During the episode "Aftermath", Servalan offers Avon the chance to rule the Federation by her side; however, regardless of whether she is serious or not, Avon pointedly refuses, shoving her to the ground during their embrace and stating "I'd be dead within a week". In the episode "Death-Watch", the two meet on a neutral planet, and after discussing Servalan's latest scheme, embrace and kiss passionately (Servalan also remarks that she viewed Avon not as an enemy, but as a future ally). In the episode "Rumours of Death", Avon takes pity upon Servalan, who is chained to a wall; similarly, it is she who reveals to him the truth about Anna Grant. However, these brief moments do not diminish the attempts of Servalan to kill Avon and the rest of the crew (although, at one point in season four, she purchases Avon as a slave, grossly outbidding anyone else's offer).
Although they do not interact romantically during the episode "Weapon", Servalan appears to be quite pleased with the farewell message she receives from the "puppetmaster" Carnell, when he describes her as the "sexiest" commanding officer he had ever met. Similarly, at different times during the first two seasons, it is implied that Servalan enjoyed dalliances with some of the younger men on her staff. She was also intrigued by the former Space Captain Jarvik ("Harvest of Kairos") both because of his ambition and his rough treatment of her, and it was heavily implied that the two made love because he had "conquered" her.
In Tony Attwood's noncanonical "Afterlife," she is shot dead by a resistance fighter.