Well, this week’s episode formally started the new “reboot” of the Knight Rider series into something closer to the original 80’s series. Although not obvious from this episode itself, this is part 1 of a 3-part story which will shake up the status quo.
The first change is the new opening which I’ve linked to above. To be honest, I’m pretty ambivalent on it. A lot of it feels like it cuts around too quickly to me, and there are a lot of shots that are obviously tacked in and will presumably change as main cast members exit over the course of the next few episodes.
The build up to this transition also started in last week’s episode I felt. Aside from the conversation between Billy and Zoey, which was about as subtle as Brian Blessed (“KARR Lives!!!!!!”), we also had a much more shadey Torres (something we’ve been expecting going by the videos linked to in his Knight Industries profile). To be honest, its been a bit of an issue I’ve had with this plot arc. Torres seems to be a shadey character, hiding Mike’s past from him, involved with KARR etc, however in many of the episodes he’s a friendly member of the team. I’d have preferred to see him more stand-offish from the beginning if he’s truely using the team for his larger gameplan (of course, he may not be, we’ll find out in a couple of weeks).
And talking of KARR, we’re seeing more footage of him in the various trailers. The newest being here:
I’m really impressed. The CGI looks very detailed, and its obvious a lot of time and money have gone into making KARR look good. If you watch carefully (and the HD version will probably help), you can see he’s got a yellow scanner bar at the top of his head, so its nice to see that confirmed 🙂
Overall, I’m still enjoying this series and I’m optimistic about the new direction. The cast’s always felt a bit big, and Bruce Davison’s Graiman has been criminally wasted in this show. We’re seeing a lot more building of the relationship between KITT and Mike in the newer episodes, and the production team have been promising more action with KITT which we saw with the return of Turbo Boost this week, and the classic Ski Mode is due for a comeback as well. These were pretty much at the core of the appeal of the original series, so should boost this new series as well.
There’s a good interview with Gary Scott Thompson regarding the show’s future here on Knight Rider Online. Well worth a look, and I found it interesting and candid. I liked his point about how Knight Rider appeals strongly the male demographic, which gives it an advantage. Hopefully if the KARR episodes and the reboot can give the ratings a bit of a boost, we may still get a second series.