About a man who doesn't exist


The word on “the street” is that Knight Rider is making a comeback this year – a big screen adaptation of a brilliant car and a man who doesn’t exist. Wasn’t that how it went?

A cop, Michael Long, got shot in the face and was left for dead. Rich lunatic, Wilton Knight, saves the officer and tells him that from now on he will fight crime. Not only will he have to wear very tight jeans and a bouffant, he will also have to make friends with a highly-advanced futuristic talking car.

And for what seemed like 100 years Michael Knight and his talking car, KITT, fought crime with a vengenance.

I must admit to being somewhat addicted to Knight Rider. Luckily for me I was only 9 when it started on TV so it was practically made for me.

My favourite scenes normally revolved around any that David Hasselhoff (the world famous actor who played Michael Knight) wasn’t in. You know the ones where he would wander off to ask a barmaid called Nicky questions about her missing friend/father/colleague? KITT would be stuck in the car park of some hick bar/rodeo/formula 3 track and would encounter some young hoodlum/old drunk hoodlum who fancied his car radio. Of course any attempts to break in to KITT would be met with a firm resistance: ‘Excuse me, sir. What do you think are doing?’ KITT would ask in a computerised Yale accent.

The hoodlum would persist (normally stereotyped as a drunk or a redneck). He would throw fists, feet, rocks and bars at KITT, only to see them all bounce off the re-enforced, blacked-out windows. The final object would usually, hilariously, always rebound back and hit him on the head. Michael would return, step over the layed-out small-time villain and drive off at 200km/h on what seemed to be a never ending desert road.

Then there was Devon, the sort of man who you would take home to meet your parents. They might be a bit suspicious of his somewhat effeminate ways initially but with a bit of cajoling you could get them to play along. Press him long enough and he’d always give in to any suggestion – ‘Hey Devon, fancy a game of Twister?’

The only problem with doing a Knight Rider movie now is that the future has arrived. Cars talk. They have on-board mapping software. They hold your coffee for you, adjust humidity settings, have electronic dials and video screens. Ok so they don’t ‘turbo boost’ 50 feet in to the air – unless you count Dublin joyriders and their ability to fly through the air in their stolen cards just seconds before they die or maim some innocent bystander.

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