“Knight Rider” begins it’s journey in 1982

One of the TV shows that defined the 1980’s premiered on this day in 1982

“Knight Rider” begins it’s journey in 1982

“Knight Rider, a shadowy flight into the dangerous world of a man who does not exist. Michael Knight, a young loner on a crusade to champion the cause of the innocent, the helpless, the powerless in a world of criminals who operate above the law.” Most TV fans that lived or grew up during the 1980’s remember very well this famous intro from the iconic TV series starring David Hasselhoff, “Knight Rider”

On September 26th, 1982 one of the TV series that defined the 1980’s premiered on NBC, “Knight Rider”, the adventures of  Michael Knight, a high-tech modern crime fighter assisted by KITT, an advanced artificially intelligent, self-aware and nearly indestructible car. The plot of the series created by Glen A. Larson revolves around the story of self-made billionaire Wilton Knight who rescues police Detective Lieutenant Michael Arthur Long after a near fatal shot to the face, giving him a new identity (by plastic surgery) and a new name: Michael Knight. Wilton selects Michael to be the primary field agent in the pilot program of his public justice organization, the Foundation for Law and Government (FLAG). The other half of this pilot program is the Knight Industries Two Thousand (KITT), a heavily modified, technologically advanced Pontiac Firebird Trans Am with numerous features including an extremely durable shell and frame, controlled by a computer with artificial intelligence. Michael and KITT are brought in during situations where “direct action might provide the only feasible solution” Michael and KITT often comunicated through a watch that Michael wore on his wrist. Aired in several countries around the world during the 1980’s,  the show starring David Hasselhoff as Michael Knight, gave the actor worldwide fame. Other main characters in the show were Devon Miles played by actor Edward Mulhare , the leader of FLAG, who appeared in nearly every episode to provide mission details to Knight and KITT,  and Dr. Bonnie Barstow played by Patricia McPherson (Seasons 1, 3-4), KITT’s chief technician and romantic tension for Michael. The character was dropped after the first season, but due to strong fan reaction and lobbying by Hasselhoff and Mulhare, she was returned for the third season and remained through the end of the series. “Knight Rider” success was so big during the 1980’s that gave way to comics and numerous toys, being the most popular ones the KITT replicas. David Hasselhof started his singing career shortly after the end of the series, but still profiting from the success of it as the reruns would last until the end of the decade and often touring together around the world with KITT. In 1989 Hasselhoff released his biggest hit “Looking For Freedom”, the music video  for the song was filled with footage from “Knight Rider”.”Knight Rider” it’s a reference mostly to people who grew up during the 1980’s, teenagers or kids, among some of the most awaited moments in each episode,there was the one when KITT jumps into the air and passes over obstacles in the road helped by a pair of rocket boosters mounted just behind the front tires that lifted the car. After the end of the series in 1986, several sequels, spin off’s and reboots were made: “Knight Rider 2000” in 1991, “Knight Rider 2010” in 1994, “Team Knight Rider” in 1997 and  “Knight Rider” in 2008, but none prove to have the same success as the original series.
Look back at the original “Knight Rider” intro from 1982

Watch the 1989 music video of “Looking For Freedom” by David Hasselhoff

 

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