First of all, congratulations for the wonderful site that you have made. I really enjoy the 'Knight Rider Archive' website! It is certainly very nice. Well done!
Thank you very much! I'm glad you like it, and there will be some more updates soon!
Concerning the issue about the teasers I only partially agree with you. Of course, it does not make sense to cut off the trailers but I am sure that I heard last year from the forum that the data space was the main reason (a source from Universal-Playback said that!).
I wouldn't hold much stock on a remark like that -- there were a lot of complaints when those sets first came out, and it sounded more like a damage-limitation PR exercise, to tell the truth. "But... It wasn't our fault!!"
Since the teaser situation has to do mainly with ripping why they did not do the same thing for the Seasons 3 and 4? Why the Region 1 releases include all the teasers (except from the two teasers missing from Season 4)? Is it a coincidence that Seasons 1 and 2 have audio soundtrack and subtitles in several languages, while the Seasons 3 and 4 have only English audio soundtrack and NO subtitles at all?
The differences with Season 3 and 4 are that they are essentially direct "copies" of the US-released sets, which Playback have started to do (presumably to cut costs) with Knight Rider, The A-Team and Quantum Leap. Now, I know that they have been "tweaked", that Season 4 has the missing teasers and whatnot, but the R2 Seasons 1 and 2 were actually produced and released by Playback, independent of the releases Stateside. I think they underestimated the response they would get about cutting the shows, especially when they released both sets as "The Complete Season [x]".
In Seasons 1 and 2 sets, the discs has FOUR episodes (approximately 180 mins per each disc)! The 2003 Release (The Best of Knight Rider) includes the teasers but each disc has only 135 mins of video. Whereas, the Seasons 1 and 2 discs have additional time of 45 mins because they include one more episode.
Take a look at some releases of big, epic films. Movies like Titanic, Dances with Wolves, JFK. These movies have running times approximately the same as 4 episodes of Knight Rider back to back, and there are no problems with compression there. You'll find in many cases that they have more subtitle options and language/commentary tracks than Playback are allegedly having trouble with.
In addition, it seems that the teasers from 'The Scent of Roses' and 'Knight Song' are missing due to the lack of space in Side A of Disc 2.
I don't think Teasers missing on the US releases have anything to do with running time or storage space either. For example, there is only one English soundtrack on the R1 release. The A-Team releases have suffered more with the loss of teasers than Knight Rider. Again, it seems to be cynical cutting -- release it as complete, and re-release a "more" complete set later on.
Finally, I do not agree that Seasons 1 and 2 are shoddy. Except from the cutting of teasers (which is certainly very annoying), I believe that Seasons 1 and 2 sets are generally very good and they do provide a lot of features (extras, audio soundtrack and subtitles in several languages).
I think the Season 3 DVD is really shoddy because of the sound effects problem, which shows how badly was made. In addition, it does not have any subtitles at all or any kind of extra features.
For picture and sound quality, yes, I agree that the R2 releases were very good -- but no better than the R1 release. But the fact that the episodes had lost the teasers, and, in the case of Season 1, putting the Pilot Episode at the end of the season as a bonus feature, I think was very shoddy. The sound effect problems on Regions 1 and 2 were an insult not only to fans, but to consumers in general.
Congratulations for the superb site of 'Knight Rider Archive'. Keep up the very good work! Cheers!