Knight Rider (2008 TV series)

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Knight Rider
Knight Rider 2008 intertitle.png
Created byGlen A. Larson (Characters)
Developed byDave Andron
StarringJustin Bruening
Deanna Russo
Sydney Tamiia Poitier
Paul Campbell
Yancey Arias
Bruce Davison
Smith Cho
Voices ofVal Kilmer as 'KITT' Peter Cullen as 'KARR' 2.0 (Knight to King's Pawn)
Theme music composerChristopher Tyng
Composer(s)Christopher Tyng
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons1
No. of episodes17 (plus 1 TV movie) (list of episodes)
Executive producer(s)David Bartis
Glen A. Larson
Doug Liman
Matt Pyken
Gary Scott Thompson
Running time42 minutes
Production company(s)Dutch Oven Productions
Universal Media Studios
Gary Scott Thompson Productions
DistributorUniversal Studios Home Entertainment
NBCUniversal Television Distribution
Original networkNBC
Picture format1080i
Original releaseSeptember 24, 2008 (2008-09-24) – March 4, 2009 (2009-03-04)
Preceded byKnight Rider (1980s series)
Knight Rider (2008 film)
External links

Knight Rider is a 2008 series that follows the 1982 television series of the same title created by Glen A. Larson and the 2008 television movie.


The series stars Justin Bruening as Mike Traceur, the estranged son of Michael Knight. The series also stars Deanna Russo as Sarah Graiman, Traceur's former girlfriend and love interest. Sarah is the daughter of Charles Graiman. Graiman, played by Bruce Davison, is the creator of a new generation of KITT (Knight Industries Three Thousand), which is voiced by Val Kilmer. The series was in production for just one season.




In the spring of 2007, NBCUniversal chief executive Jeff Zucker hired Ben Silverman as chief NBC programmer, and asked him to help bring NBC out of last place in network ratings. One of Silverman's early moves was to try to revive old franchises like Knight Rider and American Gladiators. Silverman, in a deal endorsed by Ford Motor Company, the car supplier, approved production.[2] In advance of its anticipated weekly run, the new Knight Rider series was introduced with a television movie on February 17, 2008. The new series premiered on NBC on September 24, 2008 and led the network's Wednesday evening lineup, along with Deal or No Deal and Lipstick Jungle.[3] On October 21, 2008, NBC gave the show a full season order of 22 episodes.[4] All of the episodes that aired on TV are also available on the PlayStation Network Video Store,[5] Xbox Live Marketplace,[6] Hulu Plus (available only for computer streaming, not TV or mobile streaming),[7] and iTunes Store.[8] The episodes are available in HD format and SD format.


On November 10, 2008, NBC reformatted the show in an effort to more closely resemble the storyline of its predecessor. Yancey Arias, Bruce Davison, and Sydney Tamiia Poitier's characters were removed from the series after the end of their original thirteen episode commitment starting with a two-part episode scheduled to air in January 2009. The show continued with a more character-driven focus on Michael and KITT.[9]


On December 3, 2008, NBC reduced its season order to seventeen episodes.[10] The series finale aired on March 4, 2009. When NBC's 2009-2010 schedule was announced on May 19, 2009, it did not include Knight Rider, effectively signaling the cancellation of the series.[11][12][13][14]


For the series premiere, many new features in KITT were introduced in addition to those seen on the pilot movie. As an homage to the original KITT's Super Pursuit Mode, the new KITT transforms into Attack Mode[15] - a significantly more aggressive version than the Attack Mode depicted in the pilot movie, which consisted primarily of an extended rear spoiler. KITT also transforms into a Ford F-150 FX4 pickup truck for off-road purposes,[16] a Ford E-150 van, Ford Flex, Ford Crown Victoria Police Interceptor, and a 1969 Mach 1 Mustang for disguise purposes. The series also demonstrated capabilities such as KITT's Turbo Boost, allowing KITT to briefly become airborne, and submergibility, maintaining system integrity and life support for occupants while underwater. Also installed in KITT are a grappling hook, a laser that originates from his scanner bar, double mini-guns, defensive flares, offensive missiles, parachute, a dart gun, a sonic inhibitor and an EMP weapon.

The interior of the vehicle has been reworked, with the single display screen on the center console replaced by touch-enabled head-up displays spanning the entire interior surface of the windshield. The removal of the center console screen has also seen KITT's "presence" indicator, reminiscent of the original series KITT's voice modulator, appearing in a pulsing orb mounted high in the middle of the dashboard with a dot in the middle that shifts over to "look" at whoever he's talking to. Other interior changes include a more conventional steering wheel, replacing the previously seen 3/4 steering wheel, blue lighting in the dashboard over the driver's-side instrumentation and the passenger-side console that becomes red whenever KITT is in Attack Mode, and a standard Mustang rear seat instead of the super-computer laden rear seat of the movie KITT. The interior of 4x4 Mode uses the same customized Mustang dashboard, but the F-150's passenger and driver's seats. KITT also carries a backup mainframe that he can reboot to in the event his primary is damaged. KITT's mechanics are high-tech industrial robots named Katie, Lisa, and Hank. They scan KITT for damages and interact with the human actors.[17]

KITT's technology includes a surface screen program, enabling the hood to operate as a touchscreen display, similar to the internal head-up displays, a printer in the passenger-side console, and a 3D Object Generator in the rear passenger compartment, as well as a self-destruct program.


No. Title Directed by Written by Original air date U.S. viewers
1"A Knight in Shining Armor"David SolomonGary Scott ThompsonSeptember 24, 2008 (2008-09-24)7.349[18]
Mike goes after a woman from his past who abducts a man whose DNA contains a key to an unbreakable code.
2"Journey to the End of the Knight"David StraitonPhilip LevensOctober 1, 2008 (2008-10-01)7.766[19]
Mike seeks the help of a former military buddy in a mission to infiltrate a drag race smuggling ring, but the friend may have smuggling ties of his own.
3"Knight of the Iguana"Bryan SpicerRob WrightOctober 8, 2008 (2008-10-08)6.856[20]
Mike and Zoe (Smith Cho) pose as a couple to infiltrate a terrorist group in Baja California, suspected of stealing a powerful missile designed by Knight Research.
4"A Hard Day's Knight"Allan KroekerDave AndronOctober 15, 2008 (2008-10-15)7.470[21]
Mike is injected with a neural poison and has less than three hours to live unless he assassinates a billionaire tech mogul in order to procure the antidote.
5"Knight of the Hunter"Jay ChandrasekharPatrick Massett & John ZinmanOctober 22, 2008 (2008-10-22)7.226[22]
KITT disguises as a 4x4 for an off-road mission as Mike infiltrates a right-wing militia group that is plotting to blow up a dam. Along the way he encounters a British secret agent posing as one of them.
6"Knight of the Living Dead"Leslie LibmanGary Scott ThompsonNovember 5, 2008 (2008-11-05)5.124[23]
A murderous hacker infiltrates the Knight headquarters and activates a self-destruct program hidden inside KITT. Meanwhile, Mike and Sarah have 30 minutes to relay KITT's software to the back-up system while the others rush to find a killer among them. Note: This episode reveals schematics of a re-imagined KARR who is once again similar to KITT as a returning nemesis.
7"I Wanna Rock & Roll All Knight"Matt Earl BeesleyRachel Mellon & Teresa HuangNovember 12, 2008 (2008-11-12)5.342[24]
Mike and KITT are assigned on a mission to catch a criminal couple who has been blowing up buildings. The mission gets more complicated when the couple kidnaps Agent Rivai and steals the classified personnel files of everyone at the SSC and threaten to upload them to the Internet.
8"Knight of the Zodiac"J. Miller TobinMatt PykenNovember 19, 2008 (2008-11-19)5.205[25]
Mike goes undercover in Las Vegas to bust a money laundering operation. Billy (Paul Campbell) joins the mission only to spark a romantic adventure of his own. Meanwhile, Dr. Graiman locks horns with an old rival and former flame who comes to assess how "green" the SSC is.
9"Knight Fever"Milan CheylovMatt PykenDecember 31, 2008 (2008-12-31)4.540[26]
Mike must stop the spread of a computer nanovirus that destroys electronics and threatens a global meltdown. The job gets more complicated when KITT is infected and suffers a series of malfunctions. Meanwhile, Mike's jealousy begins to show when Sarah reconnects with a former boyfriend (guest star Jeffrey Pierce), one of the developers of the virus and the only one who knows how to stop it.
10"Don't Stop the Knight"Bryan SpicerRob WrightJanuary 7, 2009 (2009-01-07)5.736[27]
Mike tries to save a kidnapped foreign ambassador (guest star Vanessa A. Williams) from a terrorist who sends Mike on a series of missions to acquire parts for a hafnium nuclear bomb. Meanwhile, Dr. Graiman tries to fix a temperamental robot named HANK. Agent Rivai eventually tracks down the terrorist's hide out but is caught in an explosion when a time bomb goes off.
11"Day Turns into Knight"Allan KroekerDave AndronJanuary 14, 2009 (2009-01-14)5.378[28]
While Rivai clings to life, Mike and KITT transport the terrorist's nuclear bomb, but to keep it from detonating they must maintain a speed over 100 MPH. The bomb is transferred, without stopping, to a C-130 transport plane and harmlessly detonated at high-altitude. Afterward, Mike learns of a second bomb located at a chemical plant in Phoenix, Arizona and he and Sarah rush to intercept it. At the end, Sarah learns her father was killed when the damaged C-130 explodes during an emergency landing. Note: This was the last appearance of Dr. Graiman (Bruce Davison) and Agent Rivai (Sydney Tamiia Poitier).
12"Knight to King's Pawn"Jeffrey G. HuntPatrick Massett & John ZinmanJanuary 21, 2009 (2009-01-21)4.928[29]

While Sarah grieves over the loss of her father, Agent Torres (Yancey Arias) and the NSA dismantle the SSC and KITT's AI chip is removed to be installed in his evil predecessor KARR, ( once again voiced by Peter Cullen), who is being kept at Area 51. To save himself, KITT secretly uploads his files to the internet and Billy and Zoe try to piece him back together. Meanwhile, Sarah uncovers a windfall of funds secretly left by her father to restart The Foundation for Law and Government at the SSC, and Mike learns that he was the original operator of KARR but his memories of the events were erased. Mike infiltrates Area 51 and installs KITT's reconstructed AI into KITT's body. KARR (who can transform into a walking mech vehicle) forcefully seizes Torres as his new operator and has a final confrontation with Mike and KITT. Torres dies in the final battle. Note: This was the last appearance of Agent Torres (Yancey Arias). Dr. Graiman (Bruce Davison) appears in recorded messages to Mike and Sarah".

Guest Star: Peter Cullen as voice of KARR 2.0
13"Exit Light, Enter Knight"Gary Scott ThompsonGary Scott ThompsonJanuary 28, 2009 (2009-01-28)6.229[30]
Mike tries to stop a bank heist, but is taken hostage and loses contact with KITT. While inside the vault, Mike learns the thieves didn't come for the money, but what is inside a mob lawyer's safety deposit box - the account numbers and access codes to his clients' off-shore bank accounts. As a SWAT team closes in, KITT tries to warn them of bombs planted in the building and Mike tries to foil the robbers' escape plans.
14"Fight Knight"Nick GomezRob WrightFebruary 4, 2009 (2009-02-04)4.996[31]
Mike goes to Colorado to help an Army friend investigate the murder of her former drill sergeant (guest star Tiki Barber), and follows leads that the soldier may have been involved in an underground fight club that exploits military veterans.
15"Fly by Knight"Jay ChandrasekharDave AndronFebruary 11, 2009 (2009-02-11)5.482[32]
Mike tries to rescue a kidnapped boy-genius who knows the location of a hidden stash of drugs stolen from a drug dealer. The boy leaves behind puzzling clues that Mike and KITT must solve in order to find him. Complicating things is the DEA agent assigned to the case who has Mike arrested for interfering.
16"Knight and the City"Guy Norman BeeMatt PykenFebruary 18, 2009 (2009-02-18)5.317[33]
Mike suspects foul play when the owner of his favorite hangout, "Sonny's Bar", is killed in a suspicious accident and the place is taken over by an unsavory crowd.
17"I Love the Knight Life"Alex ZakrzewskiPhilip LevensMarch 4, 2009 (2009-03-04)5.679[34]
Mike and KITT try to procure a stolen high-tech serum called HXP that enhances physical abilities before the thieves can sell it to North Korean buyers. When Mike corners Galt, the main suspect, he finds Galt has overdosed on the serum and possesses super-human strength.

On December 3, 2008, NBC reduced its season order to seventeen episodes. The series finale aired on March 4, 2009. On May 19, 2009, NBC announced that they would not renew Knight Rider for a second season.

DVD release[edit]

Knight Rider: The Complete Series DVD was released on July 28, 2009 on a four disc set with bonus material.[35][36]


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External links[edit]