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Roj Blake

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Roj Blake was the leader of a group of rebels opposed to Earth's government, the Terran Federation. He was a capable leader and strategist. He was the main character of the series throughout the first two seasons, and the plot focus of the final episode. Portrayed by Gareth Thomas.

HistoryEdit

Early Life and Initial RebellionEdit

Not much is known about Blake's upbringing or immediate family, though he appeared well-educated and thus was possibly an Alpha-grade throughout his life. At some point he worked on the Federation's teleport project, though it is unknown in what capacity (and it is possible this was after his initial rebel activities).

At some point as a young man Blake became convinced of the injustice of Federation rule and became involved with a radical insurrectionist group. However, one of his supporters betrayed him, and following an ambush he was captured by Travis and arrested by the Federation. His followers and family were puportedly allowed to emigrate to the Outer Worlds, but they were executed on arrival there. Blake's personality and memory were modified so he would renounce his plot and vow to help capture the rebels. After his confession, his memory was modified again to the point that he had no memory of any rebellion. He was given a new life on Earth as an apparently unremarkable citizen.

(It is somewhat remarkable that none of the apparently-ordinary citizens Blake lived among for the next four years ever made reference to his rebel past or his public renunciation and confession concerning terrorist activities, as he remained apparently unaware of them at the start of the series.)


Second Arrest and TrialEdit

Four years later, two other rebels named Ravella and Dal Richie found him in a city on Earth and brought him to meet Bran Foster, the leader of another insurrectionist group. Foster told Blake that his brother and sister, who Blake thought had moved to Ziegler 5, were among those executed on arrival, and that the vistapes Blake received from them regularly were fakes. During the following meeting of the group, Federation soldiers killed the twenty people who were there, sparing only Blake and Dev Tarrant, an Outer Worlds Security officer who Blake realized was a traitor at his trial. At the order of Alta Morag, three children, Renor Leesal, Carl Deca, and Payter Fen, had their memories modified to make them believe that they had been sexually assaulted by Blake. He was then charged with assault on a minor, attempting to corrupt minors, moral deviation, assault, intent to injure, cause actual injury, resist arrest, conspire to corrupt, incite corrupt acts, commit corrupt acts, kidnapping, of which he was found guilty despite the efforts of his legal defender, Tel Varon.

Blake was sentenced to lifelong exile on the planet Cygnus Alpha and left Earth on the prison ship London. A last-minute attempt to prove his innocence failed and resulted in the deaths of Tel Varon and his wife at the hands of Federation troops.

EscapeEdit

Blake refused to give in and rapidly organised a rebellion amongst the convicts aboard the London. Their initial attempt successfully gained control of the ship's computer systems but Blake was unable to stand and watch while the brutal first officer of the London, Raiker, executed his fellow conspirators and surrendered. Blake, Avon, and Jenna were sentenced to death for their part in the revolt.

However, the London encountered a drifting alien vessel, which claimed the lives or sanities of the first three men sent aboard. Leylan, captain of the London, proposed that the condemned trio go aboard in exchange for their executions being quashed. They agreed and Blake was able to overcome the alien ship's security systems and seize control of it. Aboard the new ship, the Liberator, Blake decided to renew his campaign against the Federation.

Commander of the LiberatorEdit

After recruiting the rest of his initial followers from the amongst the convicts following the London's arrival on Cygnus Alpha, Blake struck against the Federation on Saurian Major, where he met Cally for the first time.

Following this Blake struck repeatedly against the Federation, evading their attempts to kill him and capture the Liberator. He destroyed the communications centre on Centero, rescued the exiled leader of the planet Lindor, and took control of the powerful computer Orac from under the noses of Servalan and Travis.

Eventually Blake became obsessed with destroying Federation Computer Control, despite the widespread chaos and loss of life this would undoubtedly cause. His initial attempt seemed successful until he discovered the Control Centre on Earth was a fake, designed to lure attackers like himself. The failure of this raid and the death in it of Gan caused Blake to suffer a rare moment of self-doubt and temporarily leave the ship.

The Search for Star OneEdit

Blake learned Computer Control had been relocated to an outpost known as Star One and set out to find it. After many adventures he learned it was on a remote planet at the edge of the galaxy. At the time of his arrival the control systems were already mysteriously breaking down and Blake learned that Star One had been infiltrated by aliens from Andromeda, assisted by the renegade Travis.

With an Andromedan invasion fleet closing in and the Federation in great danger Blake chose not to destroy Star One but to warn the Federation and try to repel the invasion with the Liberator. He himself had been badly wounded by Travis and, reluctantly, abandoned the badly-damaged ship along with the rest of the crew.

After the LiberatorEdit

Zen reported that after leaving the ship Blake was travelling to the planet Epheron. After informing Zen of this he never appeared to try and make contact with his old crew. His activities for some time are a mystery and many rumours were in circulation; Servalan told avon that she had seen him die of his wounds and was cremated on the planet Jevron after the War, however this proved to be a lie.

He eventually resurfaced on the planet Gauda Prime, ostensibly working as a bounty hunter. In reality he was using this position to recruit others who sought to oppose the Federation. This led to a fatal misunderstanding when the crew of the Scorpio found him there. With his operation already infiltrated by Federation forces, Blake met Avon again. Avon believed Blake had betrayed him and fatally shot him even as Federation troopers surrounded them both.

The Blake ClonesEdit

At least two clones of Blake were created as part of Carnell's scheme to destroy him and grant Servalan control of the IMIPAK weapon. One of these was killed by Travis, but the other clone took IMIPAK and went into hiding with the freed slave Rashel, his control of the weapon guaranteeing he would not be harassed by the Federation. It is possible that Servalan saw this clone die and be cremated on Jevron, believing it to be Blake himself, although when last seen the clone was effectively confined to a single planet with no means of leaving.

The Blake IllusionEdit

Servalan herself created an illusory replica of a seriously injured and immobile Blake, dependent on complex life-support systems, as part of her final plan to seize the Liberator. The illusion was located on the artificial planet Terminal. She herself believed Blake to be dead at that time, having seen his cremation over a year previously.

FamilyEdit

The only members of Blake's family to appear were his uncle Ushton and cousin Inga, inhabitants of the planet Exbar. He appeared fond of them both and did not hesitate to go to their assistance when they were drawn into one of Travis's plans to take the Liberator.

PersonalityEdit

Blake's personality was at least initially primarily shaped by idealism and determination. He was apparently a firm believer in equality and freedom for all. Immediately prior to his second trial he had a naive belief in the justice system of Earth.

However as time went by he seemed to grow increasingly ruthless in his crusade against the Federation, willing to consider seizing control of the Federation's illegal drugs trade in order to gain leverage against it. His search for Star One bordered on the obsessive by its conclusion.

He remained a charismatic leader throughout, with only Avon seriously questioning his orders.

RelationshipsEdit

With AvonEdit

Blake was well aware that Avon was far from being a blind convert to his cause, but had a healthy respect for his abilities. He also knew that given the opportunity Avon would seriously consider deposing him and taking the Liberator for himself. However his final words to Avon before leaving the Liberator were revealing: For what it's worth I have always trusted you, right from the very beginning.

With JennaEdit

Blake and Jenna were quite close, although did not seem to be romantically involved. She was generally loyal to him if sometimes a little doubtful of the wisdom of fighting the Federation. When Sinofar summoned Blake to her planet to fight a duel with Travis, Jenna was also taken as a companion for Blake, which might suggest he cared for her more than anyone else in the crew.

With CallyEdit

Blake and Cally shared the bond of being the only two 'ideological' rebels in the group, the rest being criminals of various kinds. They worked well and efficiently together - for her part Cally may have formed an attachment to Blake she successfully kept secret until the moment of her death.

With TravisEdit

Blake's encounters with Travis dated back to before his first trial. He knew Travis' personality and methods well enough to predict what he would do in most situations. While he had no affection for Travis, he passed up opportunities to kill him on numerous occasions, knowing that while they were well-matched, he would always have a slight edge - an assessment that ultimately nearly proved disastrous.


Sources Edit

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