Did bringing back guest stars/villians 2-3 times hurt KR?

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Did bringing back guest stars/villians 2-3 times hurt KR?

Post by chin-up-27 » Tue Oct 30, 2012 5:38 am

Ann Turkel and Jack Starret appeared 3 times in the series. Jack as a major villain only once or twice but Ann as a big villain in all 3 of her episodes.

The crazy thing here is I enjoyed those episodes, Ann was brilliant, HOWEVER when guest stars were returning again and again later on in season 3 and into season four perhaps it gave the casual audience the feeling the serial had run stale and they were struggling for new ideas. Especially when they had been killed off in earlier episodes!

Goliath Returns delt with it best though reprising Turkel as Adrian Margot, from the earlier soul survivor episode. Fans would have appreciated this. She was only imprisoned. However, as much as I enjoyed Knight in retreat I could see how fans might have been extremely perplexed to see Ann back as a different villain, given Adrian was almost certainly killed in Goliath Returns!

Boyd Lasalle was a brilliant villain in Knight In Disgrace, an early season 3 episode. Knight of the juggernaut was a great episode, but seeing him again as a villain in the Season 4 Premiere possibly might have perplexed those viewers even more.

The reason I bring this up is it is hotly contested whether KR jumped the shark, and if so, at what point. A lot of things are often blamed, SPM, C Mode, RC 3 and so on. I just wonder why no one ever brings this up, could have had something to do with the audience perception on the show getting a little stale.

Other shows that didn't jump the shark certainly have bought back guests from prior episodes, but usually in a more subtle way than KR did and it worked for them.

I felt the peak of KR was toward the end of season 3 with a batch of fantastic episodes. Some great villains there with Sultis from Knightlines (under rated villain), the crazy garment magnate from custom made killer, the Chameleon with his jetpack, and many others. There were plenty of good villains going around without having to bring those people back.

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Re: Did bringing back guest stars/villians 2-3 times hurt KR

Post by Michael Pajaro » Tue Oct 30, 2012 7:53 pm

Good topic.

My take on it is that people watched TV differently back then. Most homes did not have a VCR; you saw an episode once, maybe caught it again as a rerun, then that was it. You didn't analyze the episode or discuss it in great detail with groups of people. So if a show brought back an actor as a different character, it wasn't that big of a deal - most people wouldn't remember much about their first appearance anyway. (I can tell you that I never would have remembered the name "Boyd Lasalle" when Juggernaut came out. However, I do remember being confused when Ann Turkel came back- was she the same villain or not?)

I'm always impressed by how often Boyd LaSalle comes up as a great Knight Rider villain. He's not as famous as Garth or KARR or Adrianne, but fans seem to really like him. Back in 2000 I hosted a "Knight Rider Survivor" contest for some of the KR villains and LaSalle was the winner.

http://teamknightrider.com/survivor/survivor.html

I believe that "jumping the shark" is a very specific action for a show, and it never happened with Knight Rider. For a show to jump the shark, it has to make a significant change that alters the show in a negative way. SPM and RC3 were introduced in Knight of the Juggernaut, which I'd argue is among the best episodes in the entire series. The stuntwork suffered a bit in season 4 and there were some really bad episodes in there, but it was more of a fizzling of creativity than a sudden jump the shark.
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Re: Did bringing back guest stars/villians 2-3 times hurt KR

Post by MrSmith » Tue Oct 30, 2012 10:28 pm

I agree with Michael, it is only nowadays with ready access to DVD's and computers for pausing, taking screenshots and watching shows over and over again that people notice and pickup on actors being re-used for roles in television series. Knight Rider is certainly no worse than other shows of the period that did this, A-Team, Dukes of Hazzard, Hogans Heroes, MacGyver etc...etc.. all reused actors to play different roles. Personally I don't think it was ever done that often to be distracting, I think it is unfortunate that it was done, as fans tend to pick up on that sort of stuff nowadays, but it really doesn't distract that much show from the show or the story presented.
In my opinion Knight Rider has aged pretty well and is quite watchable even today.


certainly much bigger production issues you could niggle about, camera lights showing up on reflective objects, post editing scenes that have goofs in them etc....etc...but again all shows of that period had them.

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Re: Did bringing back guest stars/villians 2-3 times hurt KR

Post by MrSmith » Fri Nov 02, 2012 9:19 pm

have reported the spam / porn post above to moderators

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Re: Did bringing back guest stars/villians 2-3 times hurt KR

Post by Skav » Sat Nov 03, 2012 8:26 am

Many tv shows of the 80's ran it's course by the 4th or 5th season back then. I think people just got quickly bored of the concept. I think having 10 seasons of a tv show today is silly and they do not hold my interest, but admittedly the concepts of these shows do not appeal to me, which is probably the most important thing. Many tv shows today are too dark. Give me a camp 80's style show any day of the week!

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Re: Did bringing back guest stars/villians 2-3 times hurt KR

Post by Matthew » Sat Nov 03, 2012 9:14 am

MrSmith wrote:have reported the spam / porn post above to moderators

Thanks for the heads up, Mr. Smith. I really hate stuff like that getting onto the forum, and I'm glad you highlighted it so I could get rid of that guy's crap immediately. :good:

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Re: Did bringing back guest stars/villians 2-3 times hurt KR

Post by Amir » Tue Nov 06, 2012 7:10 pm

I don't think it really hurt Knight Rider. It was just silly, especially when it's actors who performed memorable roles in memorable episodes. Like the guy who played Dr. Bergstrum in Goliath Returns becoming a villain in season four. Just stupid. If you use some less memorable actors, OK then, but some of those guys should never have reappeared in different role. I'm sure there were enough actors around.

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Re: Did bringing back guest stars/villians 2-3 times hurt KR

Post by chin-up-27 » Tue Dec 11, 2012 4:30 am

One I also noticed that not many pick up on is Nordstrom right hand man in Knight Of The Juggernaut played the role of Armond and Baxters right hand man in Season 3 Knight Of The Chameleon.

Of course, it isn't impossible it could have been the same guy..but no one mentions him. Nordstrom was definately not Boyd Lassale however. Bad guys often changed their names but no way was he the same guy.

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