THE GIFT OF B7 - PART TWO by Luke and Michelle Sims

The story so far:
In 2013, Luke Sims (known on the forum as Gauda Cheese) embarked on a B7 rewatch with his sister Michelle, who had never seen the series before. He posted regular reports of her reactions and opinions on the Gift of B7 thread, and it was lovely to relive through her eyes the experience of watching B7 for the first time. In The Gift of B7 Part One you can read her impressions of Season A here

Luke: And now begins our trek through...

Redemption or Space Jesus (Enemies Can't Figure Orac Out, Part 1)

"What are they wearing?!"

"What's with Blake's sleeves?"

"Is Avon wearing leather?"

Blake helps the slave carry a piece of equipment.
Me: Thank you, Space Jesus!
"I was totally thinking that!"

"They have all that space in the prison cell, but Avon and Jenna decide to sit really close."

"Why doesn't that guy go with them?"
Because the plot needs him to die.

The Liberator's sister ship comes up on the screen.
"Oh, God!" (said in a way that meant: 'I should have guessed that!')

Michelle loved this one, as I knew she would. I was thinking she might figure out who was behind it as soon as she saw the attacking ships, but nope - it wasn't until she saw Space World. Mind you, she didn't notice the Outers wearing bracelets or the guards carrying the same guns.

Michelle needed to give me a running commentary on the clothes the crew was wearing, and she hates Cally's shorter hair. She was thrilled to learn about the builders of the Liberator but...
“Why was it abandoned!? Tell me now!” Poor girl.

And she noticed Jenna and Avon sitting rather close in the prison cell, without me needing to bring it up!

Vila getting out of his cell pretty quickly made Michelle smile and we had a few laughs here.
Have you considered amputation? is one of my fave lines in the series.

I was asked which seasons were my favourite, to which I replied D (yep I'm one of those!), followed by C.

Shadow or Angry Blakes

"Blake's an ass now, and look at him! Everyone's at the controls while he sits on the couch giving orders!"
Michelle, I love you for that.

"I bet they're in cahoots with the Federation."
Close, Mich, close.

"Der... I even tried calling his name!"

"They are wearing karate outfits!"
I thought they were dressed like Luke Skywalker.

"Aren't Moon Discs supposed to look like a cactus?"

"Is Vila having sex?"

Many comments made by both of us for this one, and that is understandable because Shadow feels very.... full. I asked Michelle what she thought of the first non-Nation script and she agreed that there seemed to be more going on. Then she wanted to know if other writers are brought in, but more importantly, if Nation writes some more.

Cally was super awesome in this one and Michelle really dug it, as do I. Will she notice that Jenna and Cally become teleport controllers? Probably.

There were a few times she said some things about Blake, but "ass" is the only cuss word I'll use here. Needless to say, she's not liking him very much. Her Avon enjoyment is rising, RISING I tell you!

I think Shadow is a fun episode and Michelle did, too. It's not Boucher's strongest work, but he'll get better still in about one episode's time. Tomorrow (fingers crossed) Michelle meets Brian Croucher!

Weapon or Dude Where's My Travis?

"What? ...... What?........ huh, what? ....... Who is that!?"
Keep watching.
"But but....." Then Fen says his name.
"No way!" Presses pause. "This time you answer me - what's going on with Travis?"
Okay so I told her, just this once.

"I love the outfit Servalan is wearing."
Me too!
"No you don't, you like how she looks in the outfit, where as I LIKE the outfit!"

"Servalan really likes to touch!"
And later: "She's a total bitch!"

I like Weapon a lot. Much happens, as in Shadow, but it's more focused. Michelle and I laughed ourselves silly with Avon's wonderful dialogue and we both agree that red leather is awesome. The others go for looser fitting costumes, so Avon goes tight leather! I think my dream conversation would be between Avon and Number 6. Battle of the individuals!

Carnell... Michelle really, really liked him and said, "He'll be back for sure."
I didn't have the heart to deflate her.

If Michelle had noticed Servalan's flirting and touchy feely-ness before, she REALLY noticed it here. After Servalan shoots Travis in the back, Michelle called her a total bitch!

We paused this part way through and had a short silly conversation about our day using Fen hand motions.

As for Travis Mark 2... she was not happy. She liked the way Greif portrayed him better. I don't think she'll come around on Croucher, but I think she'll dig Trial.

A mixed reaction from her, mostly due to Travis, but we enjoyed watching this together over a bottle of red.

Horizon or The Expendables (Let's Fly Through It, Just Relax - Part 4)

"Ugh, just man up and save your damn fiance!"
Ha ha, this is like Bounty all over again for you.

"Blake is such a dick!"

I like this one, and it's a break from dense episodes. Michelle also liked it, but Ro really annoyed her, just as Sarkoff did in Bounty.

We like the back and forth between Blake and Ro, and we howled at Vila's reaction to work.

For me this is Prior's best episode, though Crotch Robot is pretty watchable as well. His other scripts...... well, I only dislike one of them - but you know.

On a whim, I asked Michelle who her two favourite characters were now. Oh. My. God. It happened. Finally! As I knew it always would. Number one is Avon! She doesn't know when it happened, but he gets all the best lines and is the most interesting person on the Liberator. The second fave? Cally! Michelle flip-flopped on her quite a bit during Season A, but she's finding Jenna to be a bit bitchy. She will love the Avon/Cally stuff. Third is Vila.

Not much else to say here. Horizon isn't bad, but it's not ground breaking, either. It's.... solid.

Mich has to be up early tomorrow for work, otherwise we'd have watched Pressure Point tonight. I don't work Sundays. Poor girl.

Tomorrow night, Michelle gets her heart broken a little.

Pressure Point or The Many Deaths Of Olag Gan

"Like he can talk! He's got the biggest vendetta ever!"

"That hat is perfectly shaped on her head."

"Oh wow, she's wearing that outfit to catch the rebels!"

Blake: I think I can destroy it
"Blake's full of himself."

"Gan should be more careful!"

"Yeah! Jenna to save the day!"

"What?..... What? No! But, but... no!"
Suddenly remembering this is a sci fi show and anything can happen. "He's not dead, right?"
Yes he is, and no he never ever comes back. Sorry, bub. Gave her a big hug
"Blake should have died instead!"

Well, I love Pressure Point and Michelle reluctantly told me it was good. Before the end she was really enjoying the story. Michelle liked knowing a little about Servalan's past and Vila was hilarious in this one - I'm about to set a new galactic record and Ooooo it's a tough one, maybe 30 seconds?

Servalan capturing Kasabi in her white outfit reminded her of Cally sneaking around in a leopard print jacket. She likes the clothes, but some of their mission choices really are silly.

And then there was Gan's death. He had dropped down the rankings for Michelle in favour of other characters, but she really liked him. He was the nicest person on the Liberator and she was pissed off that out of all of them it was he who died. Oh yeah, the water works came out, but she was bloody angry. She had a slim hope he'd be back somehow so I had the unfortunate task of telling her that he's dead for good and never coming back.

I remember this one vividly as a kid - well not all of it, just the part where they crossed the Forbidden Zone through to the end. Now Michelle knows that no one is safe.

One thing I forgot to mention:

When Vila and Avon are going to teleport down, Jenna in a sexy kinda voice says Good luck, Avon. Michelle wanted to know what the hell that was about! No good luck to Vila, just Ooooooo Avon, Goooood Luck!

Trial or Giant Spit Ball

"I swear there is some sexual tension between Jenna and Avon!"

"I'm getting quite used to this Travis now."
And admittedly his first three entries into Season B are pretty good, though Weapon is jarring on first viewing.

The first genuine burst out loud laugh moment Michelle has had from the series has come from Zil! She'd giggled a few times at things like the fighting, the boat ship and the hug robots of Season A, but this was the first time she thought something looked incredibly lame.

Other than that, this is a pretty good story. Michelle liked the political maneuvering with Servalan and the trial stuff with Travis.

She believes that there is a thing going on between Avon and Jenna and I'm wondering what she'll make of the Avon/Servalan and Avon/Cally relationships in Season C.

Next up, a season favourite of mine.

Killer or Die, Nice People, DIE!

"Oh look, Michelin men!"

"Those guys look like chocolate owls!"

"And those guys look like squashed marshmallows"

Well, um, at least the story's good.
"Yeah, it is."

"Do you have any popcorn as we watch this autopsy?"
Michelle made me laugh with that one.

I love this story and happy to report that Michelle did too. We've known Avon has a pretty good understanding and dislike of Vila and with one of my fave scenes in the series, Vila shows Avon that he knows him pretty well, too. Michelle liked this very much. Vila is more than a 'coward' and petty thief. He's also as distrustful of people as Avon is, though I doubt either one would acknowledge that they have anything in common.

The episode is filled with sparkling dialogue, mostly from Avon and Vila, which had us smiling throughout. Whilst Michelle may have laughed at some of the costumes in this story, she thought the makeup on the corpse was great, as well as the effects of the disease.

How long though will it take, I wonder, for Michelle to notice that the ladies are going to be doing very little for most of the rest of the season?

or Crimos, Where Art Thou? (FLY. AT. IT. NOW! Part 5)

Scuba baddies!
"They should start putting those bracelets on their ankles."

"The Crimo died from a rock to the leg!"

And of course the comment I was ever so hoping for....
"Ew, that's his cousin, right?"

Hostage is an episode that is pretty damn solid.... until Travis and the Crimos chase after Avon and Blake. Horrible looking rocks with hilarious running away, Travis screaming for his Crimos and Blake kissing his cousin.

Michelle told me to shut up a couple of times during this, as she was enjoying it. Then we laughed ourselves silly by the end. We agree that its an enjoyable enough story until the Benny Hill stuff begins.

For me, though, it's a horrible use of Vila, but they needed him on the planet for Travis to torture..... so why not give him a door to unlock, or something? Otherwise putting him on watch is 'Suicide', as Avon said in the final episode. I brought the subject up with Michelle and she agreed with me. Cally would have been the better choice. As yet, she hasn't noticed the sidelining of the two lovely ladies, or if she has, then she hasn't brought it up.

We're watching Countdown in about an hour or so...

Countdown or Oooooh Look, A Launch Door!
"Avon is in the red leather again!"
Red leather, check it and see.
Michelle (mumbling): "I got a fever of a hundred and three."

"That's right, you wouldn't understand, Blake, because the only lady you can get is your cousin!"
Yeah, Michelle really doesn't like Blake much anymore.

Apart from me doing a rendition of a Foreigner song and Michelle's brutal zinger at the end, both of us were pretty quiet for this one. Why? Because it's awesome. If the last ten minutes of Hostage suck, then the beginning of this episode with its fighting and action more than make up for it.

Michelle knew the bomb was never going to go off, but the journey was a lot of fun. The hunt for Provine and the revelations about Avon's past are really great. She liked knowing Avon wasn't all heartless. If she liked this, then we can't get to Rumours Of Death fast enough!

We both agree it was a shame that Provine died. Like Raiker, he would have made a great recurring baddie.

I've been wondering when Michelle would notice that Cally and Jenna stay on the ship a lot and she brought it up in Countdown. At least Vila had something to do this time. She can understand why Jenna might stay on the ship, being the pilot, but Cally is supposed to be a freedom fighter. I asked when this occured to her and she said for the last couple of episodes. I believe her.

I joked that Vila could have been in full camouflage in Hostage and still gotten caught, whilst Cally could go about in a leopard print jacket and evade capture.

She agrees that the two most interesting characters are Avon and Vila, with Blake being given things to do, because it's his show (not for long!)

I'm looking forward to finishing off the season... sadly the next episode is one of the two I don't like. Shivan Strikes! Ugh!

Voice From the Past or Servalan in IMAX

Sensing my frustration, Michelle asks: "Is this one of the two you hate?"

Michelle doesn't dislike this one as much as I, but we talked about it a fair bit afterwards and she can understand where I was coming from.

Why show the rubbish painted backdrop? Why not teleport near the airlock? That looked decent. Actually, why not just teleport into the dang base? Vila is too stupid in this one. Ugh.

Why does Travis teleport down to the planet? He has Cally and Avon at gun point. Teleport them down, leave the crew to the Feds and bugger off in the Liberator!

Why do Avon and Jenna hand out the teleport bracelets to the others? Because they listened to an obviously hypnotised Blake? Stupid! The crew going along with Hypno Blake is crazy! They let people on the ship and they don't try hard enough to break the conditioning before teleporting him down to the meeting.

I could hear Michelle groaning at the hypnosis stuff all through the episode, and she said: "Just break it, already!"

She was annoyed she didn't guess who Shivan was.
You can't predict everything.
"Yeah, true."
Michelle did roll her eyes at Travis appearing again, but she won't have to wait long. He'll be dead soon. Methinks she's sick of him. She does like Servalan, though.

The one cool part? Servalan on the big screen, then the Fed troops appearing. That looked awesome. We were both very impressed with that.

The good thing about getting through all this? Gambit is next and that episode is amazing.

or Lady in Red

"Servalan's in red this time!"
Oh, yeah.
"Ew - shut up, bro!"

"That mirror effect is really good."

"Travis can't fight."

Three double acts in one episode, and how I love it. The double dealing with Krantor and Servalan was the highlight for Michelle, and whilst I do love the Avon and Vila team up, I think she's right.

Servalan was devilishly good (yeah I know, bad joke) but wow stunning in the red outfit. Michelle loved her costume in this one.

Jenna and Cally having a bitch fight was hilarious. 10 credit touch had us both howling.

Michelle was all set to put this episode down because of the costumes, but was quiet once it was explained. It wasn't silly sci fi costumes like in Killer this time.

And who doesn't just love Krantor? We thought he was great, and it's another instance of a good character making only one showing.

The part where Travis has his arm removed is really well done, as is the mirror communicator.

The most dated part about the episode is the computer chess.

Only two more episodes until we get to the better half of the series. So excited!

The Keeper
or Medieval Jaundice

"They use sticks to hit people all the time!"

"Hey, that old dude has a necklace thingy."

Look, Vila doesn't have an icebox any more.
"Yeah, now it looks like a bathroom heater!"

The Keeper isn't perfect, but just like most of Prior's episodes, it's middle of the road and serviceable.

Michelle and I discussed the scene between Travis and Servalan, and we agree that Travis decides to go off and ditch Servalan right after she makes it clear she won't share Star One. Look how he pulls away from her after he's scolded for over reaching.

Michelle knew that Travis wasn't in the first ship and she guessed as soon as she saw the old man "DOWN BELOW!" that he was the one with the secret. On both counts, Michelle agreed with Avon - blast the damn ships!

What did surprise her was Rod losing the challenge, then the Charl dying right after him.

One thing we both want to know is whether Michael Keating did all those tricks himself? It makes sense that Vila would know how to do all of that stuff, but more impressive if the actor does too.

Star One or Galactic Climate Change

"Wow, you just know what the first episode of season three is going to be about!"

I teased her about the aliens. I said, Something you asked me about is about to happen. And I wouldn't say what.
"What? WHAT?"
Keep watching!

Then she figured it out a bit later: "Aliens!"

"Holy crap, Travis is dead!"

Michelle totally loved Star One. She loved seeing Cally get some action, she loved Avon and Travis having a tête-à-tête. Brains but no heart. Travis has Blake all figured out, but Avon? Move or die!

She thought Blake was dead for a moment, then she thought Travis was dead.
Avon shooting him and saying: He is now got a “Hell, yeah!” reaction from her.

Something I had to pause and explain to her was intergalactic travel, how long it would take even for the Liberator. I also had to make it clearer about the purpose of the minefield being a deterrent and all that, but as we watched she got it, no problem. Everything is explained.

Blake: For what it's worth I have always trusted you from the very beginning.
Michelle saw Avon's reaction and said, "Come on, you do have a heart! That meant a lot to him, didn't it!?"

One of the main strengths of the show for Mich is that the main villain is a woman and, like me, she loved those scenes of Servalan's rise to power.

While Michelle loves Vila, she was glad he didn't go down to the planet. We both think that he should never go down to a planet unless they need something opened or stolen. Otherwise, what's the point? He's a thief, not a fighter.

The alien ships being models from previous episodes was something she didn't even care about. She was too engrossed in the story.

And finally, Blake cannot destroy what he wants the most because of an alien invasion. Yes, Michelle, the good guys rarely win or have things turn out how they would like it.

Next up? Aftermath or Avon's Bringing Sexy Back

Season B Roundup

Michelle's top three stories were Killer, Countdown and Gambit. I cannot wait to show her some Bob Holmes Doctor Who!

Her least faves were Voice From The Past and Hostage.

For me, it's nearly the same as Michelle's, with Oooooh Look A Launch Door! Lady In Red and Galactic Climate Change.

And as stated before, I only dislike two stories. Servalan in IMAX SUCKS! That's me being nice.

By the end of Season B, Michelle's top two characters were Avon and Vila, followed closely by....... Servalan!

Roll on Avon's 7! Actually I'm going to write that..... Now...

· Posted by Travisina on 17 March 2014 4284 Reads ·