The roots of Blake’s 7

Lion & Unicorn

To mark the 40th anniversary of the first episode of Blake’s 7 being aired on 2 January 1978, this is an extract from Alwyn W Turner’s book The Man Who Invented the Daleks

At conventions and in interviews in the last decade of his life, Terry Nation often told the story of how Blake’s 7, his last major work, came into being and of his absolute confidence in the concept. ‘I said to my wife: “I’m going to pitch this show today, and I know they’re going to do it.”’

His account of the subsequent meeting evokes an era at the BBC that has long since passed. ‘I wanted to do another science fiction show, a good, rousing adventure series in space,’ he remembered. ‘I went and pitched the idea. I said, “The Dirty Dozen in Space”, and they said, “Yeah, let’s do it!” It was just like…

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