As a big fan of the original Knight Rider Series starring the Hoff, and a jet black 1982 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am as KITT, I was a little off put that for the new 2008 remake of the series, they went with the rather brick-like 2008 Mustang instead of any of the newer, and arguably much edgier looking, Dodge or Chevy offerings.
Not that they picked a slug, the 2008 Ford Shelby GT500KR Mustang is easily one of the best mustangs around. But seriously, just look at the lines on it:
Not that it’s bad looking, per say, but compared to the likes of the new Dodge Challenger, or even the Camaro, it seems like an odd choice:
See what i mean? When I look at all of that untapped evil potential in the Dodge and Chevy offerings, it’s almost a crying shame to think how much closer these are to the original, compared to the lines of the Mustang. But the pain doesn’t stop there. The new KITT has some equally new tricks. Take, for instance the new transformation bits:
Pretty nifty, yes, lots of cool transformation sequences like this in the series. Which is all good and fine, except for one thing. Much like the transformers, such massive physical reconstruction should normally kill the occupants… I’m not hating or anything, I’m just sayin’..
However the one thing I will say for the new series is that what they lacked with respect to the blatant disregard for practicality and style (the new knight rider attack mode looks more like the product of an import car magazine artist than the intimidating weapon it is supposed to be) they made up for in overall cool, and some great interaction between the actors. Heck, even KITT, while almost a completely different character from the original, has an unusually affable, all knowing arrogance that interestingly enough, makes him rather likeable:
Not that KITT wouldn’t be likeable even if it had no AI, but still. That is perhaps the reason why the series still seems to work. They changed a lot of things, but made sure to keep the ones that mattered. And they didn’t entirely ditch everything from the old series. If you were a fan of the old series, and you look at the intro for the new one, it is clear that homage was paid to intro sequence from the original:
I suppose at the end of the day, the cool technological edge of the series will just keep drawing viewers back in… I keep getting this image in my mind from the pilot movie for the series, where KITT is screaming across the Nevada desert, moving so fast that there are vapor trails streaming from his hood and spoiler.
Seriously? Contrails from a car? Realism be damned! That’s just cool, not matter how you slice it…