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The Original Seven
Roj Blake It's time we really hurt the Federation. Oh, we've been hitting at the fingers, the arms. I want to hit at the heart.
Played by: Gareth Thomas (1978-9, 1980, 1981)
The show's original protagonist, the leader of a rebellion against the oppressive Federation (twice) who escaped from a prison planet and now leads a small cell of rebels.
Kerr Avon I am not expendable, I'm not stupid, and I'm not going.
Played by: Paul Darrow (1978-81)
A computer fraudster who was part of the crew who Blake escaped with. A cold and snarky man who becomes the show's second protagonist.
- Anti-Hero: Type IV, tending almost towards Anti-Villain at times. He's usually apathetic and selfish but has moments of decency and even nobility (in "Countdown" he chooses to defuse a bomb that's seconds away from wiping out the whole planet even though he could just teleport away). On the other hand, he can be extremely ruthless when pushed (like "Orbit", when he tries to kill Vila to save his own life).
- Back-to-Back Badasses: When going out on a mission, he has a tendency to pair himself with whoever is the most badass from among whatever crewmembers that are available that he also finds least annoying, leading him to often be paired with either Dayna or Soolin and — more often then not — fighting back to back with them.
- Big Damn Hero: Because he's both the other biggest badass on the ship and because he's reluctant to personally back Blake's fanatical schemes (and so often stays behind on the Liberator), he often (if reluctantly and with a great deal of "I told you so's") is this.
- Brutal Honesty: Regularly tells the rest of the crew (and most villains) exactly what he thinks of them.
Tarrant: "Why would Vila trust you? You despise him."
Avon: "Right, but at least I'm consistent about it."
- The Chains of Commanding: Though power and control attracts him, he tends to reject taking full control because when he is in charge of people he actually feels responsible for their welfare (as evidenced early on with his uncomfortableness with Meegat's reliance on him) and this leaves him heavily stressed and strung between self-interest and the responsibility he feels a person in that position has; this is major factor in his Sanity Slippage after becoming leader of the crew.
- Changing of the Guard: Becomes the main protagonist in seriess C when the group gets broken up and Blake cannot be found (really because Gareth Thomas wanted to go on to other things and Paul Darrow was still enthusiastic about his role and Avon was such a big hit with fans).
- Combat Pragmatist: Any dirty trick in the book, as long as it finishes combat quickly with him as the winner.
- The Cracker: Was one. He hacked into the Federation banking system and stolde 500 million credits pre start of the series, and would have gotten away clean but for "relying on other people" as he put it.
- The Cynic
- Dark and Troubled Past
- Deadpan Snarker: Snark is his native tongue and even in those rare times when he's not speaking it, the accent is apparent in every word.
- Fire-Forged Friends: With Blake, eventually becoming With Friends Like These..., and arguably with the others to varying levels.
- Forgets to Eat ...and sleep when he's obsessed with something.
- Girly Run
- Good with Numbers
- Hard Head: For such a badass and paranoid character, he gets knocked out by a Tap on the Head a ridiculous amount of times, only once ("Aftermath") having any aftereffects whatsoever.
- Hell-Bent for Leather
- Hidden Heart of Gold: Very, very hidden under lots of snark and cynicism and even pretended self-interest. Watch what he does, not what he says (usually, anyway).
- I Gave My Word: Despite his more pragmatic approach and contempt for all things honorable before reason, he does not give his word lightly and will not break it once he has given it ( Except for that one time when he promised to keep Vila safe, but nearly killed him to save his own skin ).
- Metaphorically True / Exact Words: He may not break his word, but unless one is someone he respects or have solicited from him a very specific and well-worded promise, he can find some way around it.
Shrinker:"We had a deal."
Shrinker:"We did. A way out you promised me."
Avon: "And I'm a man of my word. In the end, that's all there is, really."
Avon throws a blaster on the floor a little ways away from Shrinker.
Shrinker: "What's that?"
your 'way out
.' It's a better deal than you gave any of your victims."
- Insufferable Genius: Prior to Character Development.
- Insult Backfire: Pretty much any insult thrown at him regarding his callousness and coldness.
- I Surrender, Suckers: Occasionally plays gambits in which he allows himself to be captured.
- Just a Machine: His view on Zen and Orac. It bothers him to no end that they talk back and don't always obey orders (as computers should), and he's threatened Zen with reprogramming more than a few times. He's also the only one who consistently refers to Zen, Orac, and Slave as "it" rather than "he" like the others do.
- The Lancer
- Laughing Mad: At the end of "Gold" when he finds out that, instead of inconveniencing and ripping a whole lot of money off of her, Servalan manipulated him into doing something that benefited her immensely.
- Leaning on the Furniture
- Loner-Turned-Friend: "Friend" might be stretching it, depending on your definition of "friend." If, for instance, he and a crewmate are on an overloaded spaceship that is going to blow up unless the approximate weight of a human disposed of and there's no way out of the situation, he's going to dump the crewmate; however, if there is the slimmest possible chance to save them, he will do everything Avonly possible for his crewmates.
- The Lost Lenore: Anna Grant is this to him.
- The Mad Hatter: As the series goes on, and especially during the final episodes.
- Nominal Hero: Ranges between this and Unscrupulous Hero.
- Not Good with People: Type 2. He finds people annoying and too emotional, and prefers the company of machines — though his dislike for certain members of his own species declines somewhat as the series goes on.
- Odd Friendship: With Cally (with some UST involved). While being on opposite ends of the Sliding Scale of Idealism vs. Cynicism and often calling each other out on their differing value systems, they build up rather a good friendship (by "Blake's 7" and Avon's standards), initially because they are both outsiders, but largely because (as Paul Darrow put it) they see exactly what the other is and are willing to accept each other even when they disagree. He respects her opinion and tends to lend it more consideration, she's the only person on the Liberator he exhibits patience with, the only crewmember he directly expresses concern over if they are in trouble, and whose emotional well-being he actually considers and asks about its status.
- The Power Of Trust: For someone who frequently says that trusting is stupidity and gets people killed, trust means an awful lot when given to him by someone he respects and he will go through hell and high water to save them, avenge them, or do something they ask of him (if that something is within reason). Conversely, it carries an incredible amount of weight those rare times when he (who frequently warns his crewmates not to trust anyone, especially him) asks his crewmates to trust him.
- Psycho Sidekick: To Blake, arguably.
- Psychotic Smirk: All the time.
- Rebellious Spirit: Intensely dislikes anyone or anything that tries to control him, and can reliably be counted on to snark at any authority figure whether or not it's good for his health.
- Red Oni, Blue Oni: Blue to Blake's Red.
- Reverse Arm-Fold: When he's not Leaning on the Furniture.
- Sanity Slippage: By the end of the show, is implicitly describing himself as a "psychopath".
- The Snark Knight: Constantly snarks at others for being herd followers and cannot stand idiocy, and he especially snarks at people in leadership positions, constantly pointing out how they fail at being a leader, but he is just as hard on himself when in a leadership position.
- Sour Outside, Sad Inside
- Sour Supporter: Just 'cause he's (almost) The Lancer to Blake, doesn't mean he has to like it.
- The Spock
- Spock Speak
- Sugar and Ice Personality
- Survivor Guilt: For being the one who survived when Anna Grant didn't.
- Tall, Dark and Snarky: Not so much the tall part, but he makes up for it with a triple helping of snark.
- Thinking Tic: If he's not leaning on Orac, he tends to roll game pieces in his hands while thinking when he's on the bridge.
- Took a Level in Badass: His initial role in the group is as the computer specialist, but as the series goes on (and he eventually winds up in command of Liberator) he spends less time working on computers and more time shooting baddies.
- Tragic Hero: His twin Fatal Flaws of cynicism and distrust (amped up to eleven by his finding out his lover, Anna Grant, had really been planted on him, then being forced to kill her when she pulled a gun on him - a tragedy in itself) lead him to kill Fire Forged Friend, Blake, believing Blake betrayed him.
- Verbal Tic: Has a tendency to start out sentences with a sardonically seasoned "well."
- Would Hit a Girl: Doesn't care if you're male, female, alien, etc.; if someone is threatening his welfare or those of his companions, he doesn't hesitate to hit, stab/shoot in the back, or kill anyone.
Jenna Stannis We're free. We've got a ship. We can go anywhere we like.
Played by: Sally Knyvette (1978-9)
A smuggler and professional criminal, the only female member of Blake's original crew.
Vila Restal I hate personal violence, especially when I'm the person.
Played by: Michael Keating (1978-81)
A likable, if self-serving, professional crook who becomes, surprisingly, the emotional core of the crew.
- The Alcoholic: Becomes one as the series goes on, largely to deal with his stress and after Gan dies.
- Amazon Chaser: Tends to be attracted to women who could easily wipe the floor with him.
- Anti-Hero: Classical AntiHero
- Butt Monkey: Is constantly the butt of jokes and snarking, even from Cally.
- A Day in the Limelight: "City on the Edge of the World"
- Depending on the Writer: Vila suffers from this the most. How intelligent, capable, brave and sober he is depends on who's writing, Terry Nation or Chris Boucher.
- It's All About Me
- Little Guy, Big Buddy: His and Gan's friendship looks rather like this. Vila is the shortest member of the crew who's Motor Mouth and kleptomania tend to get him into trouble; the friendship he strikes up with Gan, who is more than happy to prove his friendship by intimidation or violence, is often is his protection.
- Master of Unlocking
- The McCoy
- Motor Mouth: When he's extremely frightened.
- Non-Action Snarker: While often the target of snarking, he frequently gets in some of his own.
- Obfuscating Stupidity: His favourite tactic for avoiding dangerous situations. Though a bit of a unique example because he is often shown to actually be an idiot in many cases, overindulging in drink and thinking with the wrong head mostly, but when it comes to being a thief and especially dealing with security systems he seems to have a touch of genius.
- One-Liner: Loves using these.
- Plucky Comic Relief
- The So-Called Coward: He's not in it for Blake's revolution and knows that most of his comrades think he's cowardly, incompetent and generally expendable, but he's surprisingly brave (and badass) when someone who's shown him some respect is in trouble.
Played by: David Jackson (1978-9)
A convicted murderer who acts as Blake's primary muscle, despite an essentially phlegmatic personality.
Cally My people have a saying: A man who trusts can never be betrayed, only mistaken.
Played by: Jan Chappell (1978-80)
A telepathic alien rebel who joined Blake's crew after the rest of her team were killed.
- Action Girl: Sometimes (see Depending on the Writer).
- Ambiguously Human: She's an Auron, but what that means varied from one series to the next, from an alien to an artificially advanced clone.
- Blessed with Suck: In the reverse of the usual convention, she's able only to talk to non-telepaths, not to hear them or read their minds. This is occasionally useful for secret communication, but mostly her telepathy translates into being vulnerable to getting possessed or Mind Raped with disturbing frequency.
- Chickification: Was introduced as a kickass fighter, but gets handed the Distress Ball often enough that this is toned down a bit.
- Clones Are People Too: In one of the hardest-SF portions of the show, she and her clone-sister Zelda are quite clearly different people with different personalities and motivations.
- Depending on the Writer: She's either a passionate fighter or a passionate pacifist.
- Dropped A Bridge On Her: Killed off-screen seconds into the first episode of the fourth season, with only a reused scream dubbed in from an earlier episode.
- The Empath: Though she can't read non-telepaths, she can occasionally pick up the feelings and intentions of others.
- Famous Last Words: By their absence; Avon knows what they were, but he won't tell.
- The Guards Must Be Crazy: She should never be left to guard anyone who should be restrained.
- The Idealist: The only crew member besides Blake who believes in fighting against the Federation because it is corrupt and oppressive, rather than because it inconveniences her personal freedom, and operates from a moral center that extends mercy (even though she recognizes that it is not always the practical thing to do) to enemies. She's also questions and ends up eschewing Blake's "the end justifies the means" approach.
- The Lancer: After Blake is gone, and until her death, she tends to have this role to Avon.
- Odd Friendship: With Avon (with quite a bit of UST on her end). She holds quite a bit of respect for him and his abilities and never snarks about them, only about his more selfish and pragmatic value system. Compared to in many cases with the others where she objects to more pragmatic measures purely on moral grounds, when it is something he posits forth she tends to object based on how it might affect him (like how far he's willing to go to avenge Anna Grant). She's also the only one who shows awareness and consideration for his Hidden Heart of Gold.
- Only One Name: Seemingly a thing with Auronar.
- Survivor Guilt: Her initial reason not to want to return home, after she was the only one of a rebel squad to survive. This was later retconned into her having been exiled and not wanting to admit it to the others.
Zen / Liberator
Voiced by: Peter Tuddenham (1978-80)
An incredibly powerful alien battleship that Blake and Jenna stumbled on and befriended.
- The Aesthetics of Technology / Technology Marches On: The visual interface Zen provides for the crew is a sufficiently alien-looking bank of blinking lights.
- Killed Off for Real: Along with the rest of Liberator in the series 3 finale.
- Lightning Bruiser: Liberator is faster than any known ship (until Scorpio is souped up), has insanely good firepower and shields, and even has auto-repair systems that start repairing damage the moment it is made, making it the most fearsome ship in the galaxy.
- OOC Is Serious Business: Zen using "I" when telling the crew how sorry he is that he has failed them as he is dying as Liberator is being destroyed.
- Restraining Bolt: In early episodes something stops him being too helpful to the crew, although this mostly ends after the encounter with Liberator's creators.
- Sapient Ship
Servalan Your time is running out, Blake. Your time and your luck.
Played by: Jacqueline Pierce (1978-81)
The utterly ruthless and self-centred head of the Federation armed forces. You might think that she's the kind of sexy female villain who is just looking for a man to seduce and reform her. You would be very, very wrong.
Travis You'd better kill me, Blake. Until one of us is dead, there'll never be a time when I won't be right behind you.
Played by: Stephen Greif (1978); Brian Croucher (1979)
A senior Federation military officer, soaked in blood and desperate to shed some of Blake's.
- Arm Cannon: His left arm was blown off by Blake in the incident which made him intent to get revenge, and he gets outfitted with a prosthetic arm that has blasting capabilities.
- Badass Armfold
- Bad Boss: Treats his Mutoid followers very badly.
- Blood Knight
- The Dragon: To Servalan, initially.
- Eyepatch of Power
- Hell-Bent for Leather
- Killed Off for Real: By Avon.
- Misanthrope Supreme: In his final episodes, sells out humanity to an alien invasion just so he can get another chance to kill Blake.
- Painted-On Pants: His leather trousers are really tight.
- Progressively Prettier: Not any reflection on the actors, but when the character was recast his makeup was also heavily redesigned to make him look much less facially disfigured.
- Red Oni, Blue Oni: Red to Servalan's Blue.
- Sanity Slippage: starts off as ruthless, cruel and obsessive, but fairly rational. By the end of S2, he's completely Ax-Crazy.
- Why Don't Ya Just Shoot Him?: He benefits from this, because Blake knows that he can beat Travis, and as long as Travis is alive he'll be the one the Federation sends.
Later recruits to the Seven
Orac There seems little point in wasting time on such an explanation since you will be incapable of understanding it.
Voiced by: Derek Farr (1978); Peter Tuddenham (1979-1981)
A supercomputer with a very human personality. Unfortunately, not a nice
Dayna Mellanby I like the ancient weapons: the spear, the sword, the knife. They demand more skill. When you fight with them, conflict becomes more personal... More exciting.
Played by: Josette Simon (1980-1)
A weapons enthusiast whose father was murdered by Servalan, causing her to join Avon's crew purely because it seemed the best chance of getting revenge on her.
- Action Girl
- Blood Knight: See character quote.
- Genius Bruiser: Is not only an expert with any weapon one could name, she is also a brilliant designer and builder of new ones.
- Hyperspace Arsenal: Most notoriously in one episode where she produces a heat-seeking self-propelled bomb on wheels the size of a Roomba between two shots, while wearing a skintight leather catsuit and not carrying any kind of container.
- Stepford Smiler: Usually she appears to be a very cheerful Blood Knight... until Servalan pops up, in which case it becomes clear that the grief and rage she feels over her father's murder is quite undiminished.
- Twofer Token Minority
- You Killed My Father: Dayna's reason for joining the Liberator crew is to get revenge on Servalan for killing her father.
Del Tarrant What are you doing on my ship?
Played by: Steven Pacey (1980-1)
A charming, questionably moral guy who thinks he's a sexy, charismatic space hero. Unfortunately, that isn't the kind of universe he lives in.
- Ace Pilot
- Always Identical Twins: He and his brother Dieter.
- Creator Thumbprint: Terry Nation had an odd attachment to the surname Tarrant, and very frequently included a character of that name in his works.
- Deadpan Snarker: Albeit not to the same extent as Avon.
- Depending on the Writer: Whether or not he's a cold, calculating mercenary or a heroic and chivalrous sort. (This wasn't really the fault of the writers, as there were major changes in the conception of the character after Steven Pacey was cast, and the characterisation depended on which edition of the show bible the writer got.)
- Leader Wannabe: Pretty much names himself leader off the bat and is extremely frustrated that the others only listen to him when they feel like it or he actually suggests something useful and that they usually follow Avon's lead over his.
- One Steve Limit: A different character named Tarrant appeared in the show's very first episode, as the Federation's Agent Provocateur within the rebels. This is due to Terry Nation's trade mark use of the name.
- Punch Clock Villain: As a Federation officer, until he decided Screw This, I'm Outta Here!, went AWOL, and became a...
- Space Pirate: before meeting up with the Liberator's crew.
- Suspiciously Similar Substitute: For either Blake or Jenna (YMMV).
- Too Clever by Half: He is quite good at his specialties, and he knows it (not forgetting to make sure others know it), however he doesn't have the wisdom and experience that could save him from making rather large oversights in the enthusiasm for his audacious plans.
Soolin I don't give my allegiance at all. I sell my skill.
Played by: Glynis Barber (1981)
A cold and emotionally scarred gunslinger who joins the Seven after her boyfriend tried to kill them, and also her.
Voiced by: Peter Tuddenham (1981)
The crew's ludicrously subservient second spacecraft.