The BBC are reporting that classic British sci-fi Blake’s 7 is to be remade by the Syfy channel.

B7 has always been one of our favourite programmes, so it’s good to see it being revived to give younger viewers a chance to appreciate it. But the American writing and production team (and probably actors), gives us pause for thought. It’s not that we’ve got anything against American TV in general, but its character does tend to differ somewhat from British TV – and I don’t just mean the budgets.

British TV sci-fi has a history of being darker and more cynical, with Blake’s 7 being one of the stand-out examples. Its eponymous hero was a (falsely) convicted paedophile. His crew were a collection of criminals – thieves in the most part, but with a murderer thrown in for good measure – piloting a stolen ship. They were shown as “freedom fighters”, but one man’s freedom fighter is another man’s terrorist, and there was certainly plenty of innocent blood spilled in their fight against an authoritarian government.

Morally ambiguous paedophiles and terrorists certainly provide plenty of scope for challenging and interesting storylines. I just hope the American viewers and producers have the stomach to explore those ideas to the full.

On the plus side, it does give me another chance to post a link to our Star Trek vs Blakes 7 strip.