"The fact that he [Blake] is still free gives them hope. And that is dangerous, Travis. Hope is very dangerous."
Blake has been in contact with another resistance leader, Avalon, and agreed to provide transport for her. She is currently on an ice world where the Federation have established a base of operations.
Travis has already arrived on the ice world and captures Avalon, massacring her fellow freedom fighters. When Blake arrives, he and Jenna find just one survivor of Travis's attack: a man called Chevner who has worked with Avalon for years. With the assistance of Chevner; Blake, Jenna and Vila rescue Avalon from the Federation base.
|Jenna helping to rescue Avalon|
Back on board the Liberator, Blake feels that the rescue was too easy. He realises that the group were allowed to rescue Avalon and escape and that Travis's plan was to put someone on board the Liberator who could then kill the crew and take the ship back to Travis.
The crew begin to hunt for Chevner whom they believe to be working Travis. But it transpires that Chevner has been killed by a robot duplicate of Avalon. The robot has in its possession a small sphere that contains a deadly virus which kills almost instantly. The crew manage to overpower the robot before it unleashes the virus.
Blake: Not for the first time, Blake is almost fooled by one of Travis's plans but realises just in time that his rescue of Avalon was too easy. When he goes back to rescue Avalon he manages to take hostage a room full of Federation guards and scientists. Granted he has a robot and killer virus with him but it all seems rather too easy.
He has no problem with sacrificing himself if it means that he can take both Travis and Servalan with him. This is a bluff of course but, based on past experience, he genuinely doesn't seem to value his own life that highly if sacrificing himself is for the greater good.
Avon: Prefers to stay in the warmth of the Liberator. Takes great delight in insulting and tormenting Vila (Vila: "I've got a weak chest."; Avon: "The rest of you's not very impressive."). He also teleports Vila down to the planet before Vila is fully dressed.
Does Avon have a thing for Cally? When he and Blake find her after she's been knocked unconscious by the robot, Avon is left to look after her. We seem him very gently stroke the side of her face. It's the first time we've really seen him show any sign of tenderness towards another member of the crew.
She is a great admirer of Avalon's work and talks with the Avalon robot for some time, not realising that it's not the real woman. Shortly afterwards she's attacked by the robot and knocked unconscious.
This is also the first time in the series that Servelan and Blake meet face to face.
His latest plan is rather a good one and comes very close to succeeding. But yet another failure means that Servelan strips him of his command pending a full enquiry into his actions.
The idea of robot duplicates isn't a new one in science fiction. Indeed, writer Terry Nation had used it twice himself in Doctor Who 1965's 'The Chase' and 1975's 'The Android Invasion'. But whereas in 'The Chase' it was obvious from the outset that there was an evil robot Doctor wondering about, here the fact that the Avalon rescued by Blake is a robot duplicate is cleverly hidden until about ten minutes before the end of the episode. Like Blake, the viewer is more or less in the dark about Travis's real plan.
|Travis with the virus|
Overall, a very good episode. Next week, the underused Gan gets to step into the spotlight - sort of.