Was the Knight 4000 controversial?

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Was the Knight 4000 controversial?

Post by Michael Pajaro » Sat Dec 15, 2007 10:57 pm

OK, I'm looking for some insight particularly from the old fogies in here who remember the time before Knight 2000 aired. We didn't have the internet like we have today, but there was rec.alt.tv.knight-rider (or whatever it was.) I recall hearing ahead of time that there would be a new KITT in the movie, and then I remember seeing some publicity photos, but I don't remember there being a lot of controversy about not having the Trans Am. I think I was surprised that the new car was red and not black, but at the time it just seemed perfectly natural that there would be a different car.

Is the '82 Trans Am like a fine wine, and the older it gets the more we value it and that's why many people want to see it again? Or was there a feeling of blasphemy back in '91 as well, and I just don't remember it?
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Re: Was the Knight 4000 controversial?

Post by Matthew » Sat Dec 15, 2007 11:37 pm

Hmmm, I don’t know whether I’d consider the choice controversial, but I do remember being bitterly disappointed that the Trans Am was featured in the credits, but barely appeared during the movie itself, when I watched it the first time it was shown here in the UK. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if that was partly responsible for me taking an immediate dislike to the Knight 4000 since we were teased by the producers.

Whilst I still don’t believe that I would have liked it very much, I think it would have been an easier transition if we’d only seen the Trans Am in Devon’s memories since the credits, whilst providing us with unseen footage from Bonneville, didn’t really make any sense from a creative standpoint.

When looking at the Knight 4000 with an open mind, the main problem that I have with it isn’t that it was red, it’s actually that I don’t think the end result of the custom bodywork looks all that good. Whilst I quiet like the styling of the nose, the rear end seems out of proportion, which is of most likely due to it being styled to resemble Banshee. Truth be told, if they’d just reigned in the over the top styling at the rear end of the car, and worked to make it closer to the Stealth, it probably wouldn’t have looked all that bad.

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Last edited by Matthew on Sun Dec 16, 2007 12:05 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Was the Knight 4000 controversial?

Post by neps » Sun Dec 16, 2007 12:02 am

I remember that I would have been better accepting of the Knight 4000, if my childhood (the original KITT) wasn't chopped up to pieces and sold off to the highest bidder, with pieces of it winding up in a cops brain.

I mean, come on, way to add insult to injury.

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Re: Was the Knight 4000 controversial?

Post by knightprobe89 » Sun Dec 16, 2007 12:53 am

i dont remember there being any controversy, i liked the knight 4000, i thought it was very stylish, the main problem is they did'nt show enough of the car as kitt until almost the end of the movie. the storyline totally sucked.
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Re: Was the Knight 4000 controversial?

Post by DarylKnight » Sun Dec 16, 2007 12:55 am

I remember the commercials leading up to the movie were awesome. They were, if I'm correct, reusing the season 4 teaser footage of Micheal Knight walking down the steamy setting, and opening the doors to what would be the future. It was done with a voice over, "For 4 years they rode together, A man who did not exist, and car unlike any other" and we saw flashes of KITT, SPM KITT with a quick look at KIFT's scanner. I remember waiting impatiently, as this was an event to behold. Then, there was no KITT, only that red thing. I was SOO disappointed.

Salt in the wound, was unlike now, KITT's body style was STILL in production. There was no reason not to bring back the original KITT. Then, as an explanation, we get that awful line from Maddock "there wasn't exactly fresh oil on the dipstick". What did that matter, with KITT's MBS, I'm sure he didn't rot away. It wasn't so much controversial, it just really sucked. I think thats the best way to put it.

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Re: Was the Knight 4000 controversial?

Post by young-nyc » Sun Dec 16, 2007 2:31 am

i remember seeing KIFT and i wasn't at all disappointed as i was with this mustang.
sure i was a little upset because i was expecting it to look like the banshee instead it looked like it's disproportioned twin brother.
but still i was happy...
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Re: Was the Knight 4000 controversial?

Post by KITTfan » Sun Dec 16, 2007 5:18 am

I didn't saw KR2000 until I got the 1st season DVD (well, clips & photos in net before that) so I really don't know what I would've thought about it in 1991.

I kind of like the front end as well in it but the red colour, rear end + the dash is what I don't like. I think if KIFT were black, the dash was more hi-tech looking and the rear end was something like this new Mustang have, blackoutpanel added, I could accept it. That way it would've looked more in style to the original and still futuristic in 1991.
That movie had more problems though, biggest problem was it's timeline set in the future, KITT dismantled, one of his chips put in the cops head, KITT being put in '57 Chevy, not good at all. If there was no KITT worthy supercar, Michael could've still drive that '57 Chevy but KITT shoudl've been inside the little tv-set which was used at least 3 times in the original series when KITT's body was damaged :) To be fair there was also things I liked, watching Devon and Michael working together again & KITT's voice done by William Daniels.

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Re: Was the Knight 4000 controversial?

Post by Scott Kirkessner » Sun Dec 16, 2007 10:46 am

I loved it, but I was also 10 when it aired.

As I become older and a writer, I became more appreciative of "story" and looked past the cars (Chevy and KIFT), and appreciated the plot much more. A topic that I have beaten to death on this board and one that Victor Kros is trying to bring to our attention too.

Plot and story mean a hell of a lot more than a car. But this is a topic that I am currently writing in another post.

To respond to a comment made by DarylKnight who said since the original T/A was in production at the time's release, it would have made sense to use the original KITT... no it would not. Remember that the movie was set 18 years after the premiere of the original show. Maddock's line of the car "not having fresh oil on the dipstick" was true and holds well. No the car didn't rot away, it just wasnt current for the times. Why would an 18 year old car be the centerpiece of a futuristic crime drama?

And in defense of the character (or against him, for that matter) he just viewed KITT as a car, he never understood the essence of KITT, which was a mistake on his end.

Regardless of such, why would an 18 year old car be the centerpiece of a futuristic crime drama?

The 4000 was kinda cool, in a bit it still is. We never got to give it a chance as the series was never picked up - maybe we could have seen it do more stunts instead of flashy stuff on its windshield and floating. I will agree though, that even in the so-called 21st Century, it stuck out like a sore thumb among the rest of the cars on the road.

That's one that that was NOT intended in the original series - KITT was designed to be cool looking, but blend in when it's caught in a traffic jam (when Michael does not use ski-mode for an escape route).

To be honest, when viewed from a certain angle, the front end of KIFT looks like a penis.

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Re: Was the Knight 4000 controversial?

Post by Knight Rider Archive » Sun Dec 16, 2007 11:25 am

Regardless of such, why would an 18 year old car be the centerpiece of a futuristic crime drama?


I think the problem that a lot of fans had with Knight Rider 2000 wasn't the Knight 4000, but the '57 Chevy. You could argue, if an 18 year old car shouldn't be the centerpiece of a futuristic crime drama, what the hell were they playing at by using a 43 year old car?! Yes, the Chevy was Michael's car of choice in his youth (see "Forget Me Not" in the original series), but the Trans Am could have just as easily been used in that part of the story, and would have then passed the baton to the new car in a more fulfiling way. I'm sure if that had happened, Knight Rider 2000 would have been much more of a 'fan favourite'... and more like the Knight Rider season premieres of old.

Going back to 1991, I can't remember any controversy about the new car. I can't even remember feeling shocked, saddened, or angry about it. It was a natural progression; I love the Trans Am, but K.I.T.T. is the car of the future and must always remain as such, so it makes sense that for new Knight Rider projects the car must be up-to-date. I think it's great that they have included the Trans Am in the new Knight Rider (for however long, who knows at this point, and that it's implied that the Trans Am remains Michael Knight's vehicle), but Mike Tracer should be driving a different car to Michael Knight.

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Re: Was the Knight 4000 controversial?

Post by Scott Kirkessner » Sun Dec 16, 2007 11:48 am

Yes, yes, Paul you are correct.

I think a much better situation would have been Knight finding the original KITT in mothballs, packed away, long forgotten, instead of dismanted.

The Chevy-KITT was ridiculous.

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Re: Was the Knight 4000 controversial?

Post by KentuckyKITT » Sun Dec 16, 2007 12:27 pm

I was 12 when Knight Rider 2000 aired on TV. I was a huge fan of Knight Rider even though I was only a child. But, to me and even my dad said back when we watched it, that it was the death of Knight Rider. The deathly music, the horrible story line and that red car. I just felt it wasn't right. I've stuck by the original show ever since, trying to block out all recreations of Knight Rider as if they never happened. Now I find myself having to do it all over again. This time I have a peek at the new KITT car and some of the actors because of the internet and I'm already dissappointed, but I'll watch it just as I painfully sat through 2000, waiting to see a glimpse of the REAL KITT back on television. I really felt the Knight 4000 was just a joke. When I saw the same car again in the CHPs movie, I was like give me a break...When have we ever seen the original KITT used in another movie as some other car..never. Anytime the black Trans Am is used in a movie, it's a cameo or spoof, but it's still referred to as KITT and not some futuristic car with no name. If they would have painted the car black and had a cool story about how the Trans Am was completely destroyed in battle and KITT re-emerged as the K4000, then I would have accepted it better. The 57 Chevy thing was just the producers fishing for something to do...and it didn't work either.

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Re: Was the Knight 4000 controversial?

Post by young-nyc » Sun Dec 16, 2007 11:49 pm

oh yeah i agree,
in KR2000
since KITT was outdated,
it would've been nice to update him to KIFT instead having him dismantled...
but then again..i guess they were going for the sympathy/ drama route...

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Re: Was the Knight 4000 controversial?

Post by Lost Knight » Mon Dec 17, 2007 8:29 pm

I don't remember there being all that much controversy about the car of choice, though I know there was interest in it. I remember my father telling me that it was going to be red, which I remember being very surprised about. Watching the movie for the first time, I remember I kept waiting for action and to see the Knight 4000 unveiled, and I remember scratching my head in confusion after it was all over. All I kept thinking was that the car barely did anything. And you know a movie is bad when you try to like it so hard and still can't. I also remember going to the NY Auto Show the following year and making the connection that the Pontiac Banshee was the Knight 4000 (as I was not aware it was simply based off of it).

But I think it was just as controversial as the Mustang, only we did not have tools like message boards on the Internet for fans of the franchise to come together and discuss, and the fact that the car was red. I thought the color of the car was more controversial than the actual car itself. I wondered how the Knight 4000 was going to sneak up on any bad guys being colored bright red as opposed to black, which was more stealth-y. At that time, I saw the Knight Rider fandom as more of a club, not unlike those of us who read Marvel or DC comics at the time. Nowadays, with Hasselhoff's popularity and '80s nostalgia, I believe the franchise grew to be more popular after it was gone.
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