Knight Rider Revisited

I watched the 2-hour NBC Knight Rider movie yesterday. I have read many, many reviews and opinions both before and after the original airing. And yes, I am a huge fan of the original KR series. (I’m still looking for an ’84 TA so I can build my own.) That being said, I have a response to the community in general. Get over it. You cannot go back and remake something that campy and expect it to fly. Nothing will ever live up to those giddy feelings you got from watching KITT turbo boost over an 18-wheeler while bullets bounce off the windshield when you were 7 years old. This movie was good. Let’s review…

KITT is not a Firebird. Guess what. It was never about what kind of car the A.I. was shoved into. He was also a ’57 Chevy Bel-Air at one point. Heck, he was a box at one point as well. The series has nothing to do with that and if you actually watch the show with an open mind…the Mustang can grow on you. I say this because it grew on me with just the movie and I don’t like Ford in general.

William Daniels is not the voice of KITT. Val Kilmer is. Remember that in the 80’s everything was really over the top. Subtlety was actually frowned upon, I think. Now don’t get me wrong, William Daniels was wonderful for the personality they created for the Knight Industries Two-Thousand. But that was 25 years ago. These days we have room for more subtle nuances. Val Kilmer can fill that role. He managed to inject a highly subtle emotion into his voice…or as I once heard it described for another character…emotionless emotion. I thoroughly enjoyed how one could get a feeling that there is a possibility for KITT to obtain emotion but just hasn’t quite gotten there yet.

The Hoff isn’t the star of the show. Have you looked at him lately? It’s been 25 years. He is starting to show signs of…well…getting old. Somebody else would have to have the role unless you want to make sure KITT is equipped with oxygen and adult diapers. No offense to David Hasselhoff fans, but the man isn’t in his 20’s any more. Seriously, people like that are the same ones that think Sean Connery is still spry enough to play Bond. They were good in their day…but that day is long gone. Get over it and let’s hope the current casting picks can portray the relationships and personalities that give a show like this life.

That doesn’t mean the show is without problems. While this is not as bad as Team Knight Rider by any stretch of the imagination…the “nano-bits” are just a bit silly when it goes so far as to give KITT different hoods and spoilers. I would be willing to go so far as changing the car’s color and repairing damage near instantaneously without comment. After all, the original KITT had a “molecular bonded shell” that protected him from all but a BFG-9000. I just cannot get over the whole building of entirely different body panels with the stuff while driving at 90mph down the interstate. Besides, where the hell do the scanners go when KITT builds that other hood? According to the KR mythos, those things are needed for KITT to “see”. Something stinks in fantasy land, like the rape of long-standing and established facts of the world.

One other thing, why in the hell does every male lead have to have constant 5 o’clock shadow?? I am right on the verge of buying a truck load of Gillette razors to send over to Hollywood since there appears to be a shortage of shaving hardware in the area. Call me crazy, but the ratty facial hair really doesn’t improve the character. This show is supposed to be a bit different from the run of the mill fare usually served up by stations. Why have the run of the mill pretty-boy look? It’s possible to have the star be hunky enough for the ladies and cool enough for the guys without pandering to the Universal TV Show Popularity Formula.