This journal will chronicle drunken observations and insights as I make my way through my the Knight Rider, season one DVD set — my Walden if you will. Although I’m sure that by the time I’m finished, you will regard Walden as Thoreau’s Knight Rider.
1. Ever since childhood, the hair of David Hasslehoff as Michael Knight has reminded me of meatballs. After watching most of Disc 1, I am consumed by a desire to consume meatballs and only refrain from making a run to Togo’s, in pursuit of a half way decent but not particularly good Hasslehoff Head Sandwich because A) it is 2:00 am and Togo’s is closed as fuck and B) my blood alcohol level hovers at about four times the legal driving limit. Actually, I don’t really car about “B” that much. I just wish Togo’s was open. Also, this is especially true when Hasslehoff’s back is to the camera. It’s just a human body with a meatball where the head should be. You can’t look at such an image and think of anything other than Ichabod Crane coming home covered in tomato paste.
2. Seeing Patricia Macpherson in her little white jumpsuit for the first time in well over a decade stirred hibernating memories of barely comprehended childhood lust, and I realized that she must have been responsible for my first, thumb sized erections. No wonder I would plead so desperately to delay bed time for a few minutes on Friday Knights. Yoda PJ’s leave little room to hide embarrassing protrusions, even when you’re eight.
3. Maybe it’s a plastic surgery issue, but whenever I watch a show that aired before about 1988, I can’t believe how old all the actors look. In the pilot, I’m pretty sure that the femme fatale who serves as Michael’s nemesis is played by Gloria Swanson. Call me superficial, but if face-lifts and lippo are what it takes to insure that actresses cast in the roll of “sexpot # 1 ” are completely jowl free, then God bless you, Dr. Baumblatt.
4. Is Michael Knight a hero, a hetero, a homo or a pedo? Answer: all of the above. Upon meeting hot single mothers and older sisters, who invariably have ten year old boys in tow, Knight’s first course of action is always to take the boy “for a ride in my car.” Cut to a steamy breeze blowing through curtains, and fade to black. Seriously, none of these women have the mildest qualm about sending little boys off with a stranger from out of town who asks to be left alone with the kid within 90 seconds of first meeting him. The ease with which Knight is able to get young boys alone is like something out of Pedhouse Forum
“Hi, my name is Michael Knight, and what’s you’re name pretty lady?”
“Angela, and this is my son Billy.”
“Hey sport! What do you say I take you for a ride out to the warehouse district! See ya later Andrea.”
“Bye Michael, nice meeting you. Have fun Billy!”
On many an occasion, these women throw themselves at Mike with that delicious, single mom desperation and, when better choices exist, he deflects their moist attentions as readily as KITT deflects howitzer shells. One can only assume that he hits the tang only upon discovering that Jr. doesn’t like to party like that. But this ain’t a George Lucas character. When his options are limited, Knight hits option “b” with enthusiasm. It might be his second choice, but he still loves it and he is perfectly content to wipe the blood from his sword and fence his way to a silver medal.
5. The second episode of the series was directed by Paul Stanley. Was it that Paul Stanley? Nobody knows for certain, because the possibility is too delicious to risk debunking through investigation. “You know, I really needed to take a break from the relentless gravitas of Kiss…”
6. The five best television shows to watch while heavily intoxicated are:
1. Perfect Hair Forever
2. Aqua Teen Hunger Force
3. Knight Rider
4. Family Guy
Note that two of the top three star anthropomorphic meatballs.
7. The five best shows to watch while sober are:
I have no idea. Probably West Wing, or some bullshit like that, which only goes to demonstrate that temperance is no virtue.
In all seriousness, let’s have a hand for the design team on this show. 23 years later, KITT still looks totally rad. Even his high tech interior still looks pretty cool, with the lone exception of when he is tracking people and the display on his monitor looks like Berserker.
Roughly a year ago, a friend pointed out that it would be really funny if their were “little people” whose proportions where opposite those of actual midgets. People with normal sized arms and legs, but with really small torsos and heads. I’ve been sporadically laughing out loud about it ever since.
I’ve hit the roughest patch of Knight Rider so far. The impossibly bad episode called “White Bird.” David Hasslehoff is called on to shed tears on no less than three separate occasions, one of which comes as we see him driving through the desert as a montage of photographs of his ex-fiance drifts over the screen as we hear watery echos her saying, “I love you Michael. Don’t ever leave me Michael.” This continues for a good two minutes. I also like the slyly expository scene where Michael explains the case involving his ex to Bonnie, beginning with, “In my other life before the Foundation, when I had a different face, and a different identity…when I was, Michael Long…” Cue bad funk.
Michael Knight has the worst taste in music ever. I don’t remember this at all, and granted, there wasn’t much to chose from in 1983… but Christ. All he listens to is this terrible, late 70’s easy listening country rock. Bands who were inspired by the Eagles. Inspired to make music — not to murder children. So wrong.