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on 11 March 2004
Had you noticed that Gan kills at least one person, and therefore either the script forgot about his limiter, or the limiter is dodgy? Had you considered the idea that Avon subconsciously sees Blake as a substitute for his missing brother, hence his ambivalent feelings of loyalty and resentment? No, nor had I.
If you care about such things, buy this book. If you don't, why are you reading this?
The format is chronological episode-by-episode, but this is far more than your average fan's plot summary, it's an intelligent, well written critical analysis, packed with details about production problems, script alterations, and acute observations of characters and sub-texts. There is more to Gan, for example, than meets the eye ...
There's also an appendix which reviews Blake's 7 radio shows and other spin-offs.
As far as I know this is the first and only guide to Blake's 7 there is, and the text is superb - far better than other guides I've read, about The Prisoner and The Avengers,for example, by Alain Carraze et al. Where those guides excel, however, Liberation fails. They are large and have glossy pages and colour photos. Liberation is A5, and has tiny b&w pictures. I don't know if the leather-bound edition improves on this, but the text deserves a large-format glossy photo edition, which would be worth double the money.
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VINE VOICEon 25 May 2010
As other reviewers have pointed out the first thing that strikes you about this book is its awfull cover. For some reason the publishers Telos decided to go for a cover which had nothing to do with Blake's 7 - perhaps this was due to copyright issues. However naff cover asside Liberation is an excellent book. The authors Fiona Moore and Alan Stevens have written a facinating book which covers all aspects of the cult tv programme Blake's 7. As well as covering the four series, Liberation covers the audio plays as well as the novels.

The book is slightly let down by the lack of illustrations - some colour photos from the series would have been nice. However this and the book cover are minor quibbles. For anyone who is a fan of this classic series Liberation is well worth reading.
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on 26 April 2006
Very few photographs. Worst of all is the sex obsessed interpretation and analysis of each episode. Avon's character is analysed as completely evil while Gan is said to have a limiter implanted to stop him enjoy murdering women, not to put too fine a point on it. There is talk of attack with "phallic" guns. Sometimes the authors tend to dwell on negative aspects of characters and exaggerate them. Each episode is read into so much that it becomes tiresome even for the most enthusiastic fan. There's room out there for the definitive guide to Blake's 7. This isn't it.
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on 11 April 2005
Never have I read such a poorly written book on a television classic. If like me you are interested in the behind the scenes stories behind the series and a factual look at Blake's 7, then this is one to avoid.
The authors have developed to a fine art the ability to take a half fact and then write pages of supposition from it. Their motivations for the character of Gan for instance would probably have Terry Nation turning in his grave.
Not only that but even the few items touted as fact there are a vast number of mistakes.
Poor written, poorly produced, lacking photographs and with a cover that bears no resemblance to the series.
One to avoid.
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on 7 May 2010
Fan writing tends to break down into two distinct types: diegesis and exegesis.

'Diegesis' is the internal fictional world. In digetic criticism the critic tells you what happened within that world. Fans often go beyond that by expanding the diegesis to include characters and incidents that they have invented themselves, often to fill gaps in the narrative, sometimes to explain away discrepences. Sometimes they're just having fun playing with other people's toys. This is the world of fan fiction and can be hugely entertaining if done right.

Then there's 'exegesis' or interpretation. This is where the critic attempts to uncover the 'actual' meaning of the text, or, more accurately, impose order upon the cacophony of the text according to their own preconceptions. The 'meaning' of a text is largely the artifact of the method of analysis so interpretation generally tells us more about the critic than the text itself. Accordingly interpretation is only as interesting as the interpreter.

Now, however, there's this: an exegesis of the critics own expanded diegesis. In other words the writers make up things about the series which isn't even hinted at, or which flatly contradicts what we see, then interpret what they have invented themselves. Of course, if anybody actually points out that their interpretation is pretty flimsy the authors can simply go back and invent more stuff to back their interpretation up creating an ever expanding spiral of nonsense

A huge disappointment from the otherwise excellent Telos.
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on 18 September 2007
Undoubtedly the definitive text on Blake's 7, this superbly researched
book, meticulously charts the plot threads and character developments that
take place across all four series, and in so doing, exposes a darkness and
sophistication to the programme, that was so often undermined by poor
production, and a pre-watershed timeslot. Some fans might complain that
their comfort blankets are being torn up, but then the show was supposed to
be about a group of criminals who turn into terrorists.
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on 18 March 2005
Perhaps inevitably for a TV series transmitted in the early evening of the prurient 70's, Blakes 7 was kept clean. Its subtle themes - of the predatory sex criminal Gan, of the psychotic Avon - were all but submerged. In Liberation, the authors have identified these themes. Watching Blakes 7 after reading this book is a revelation - it is likely watching a completely different, adult series. This book is recommended for those who want to enjoy their favourite show from their childhood in a new adult light.
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