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05 May 2012 @ 09:07 am
FK: 20 Years Today  
According to IMDB, Forever Knight premiered twenty years ago today, on Tuesday, May 5, 1992, with "Dark Knight."  "Dark Knight, the Second Chapter" followed the next night, on Wednesday, May 6, 1992.

In the US, FK's first season aired in CBS's "Crimetime After Primetime" rotation.  "Crimetime" was an unusual programming experiment for a US network, in which CBS aired a different crime drama every weeknight in the same abbreviated timeslot, crammed in between the late local news and late-night chat shows.  Consequently, the first-run first-season US airings were cropped, notoriously missing snippets and scenes that aired in Canada and Germany (to this day, these differences cause confusion in fannish discussions).

First season concluded with "Love You to Death" on Tuesday, March 2, 1993, an extraordinarily long span for a 22-episode season.  FK was then canceled, along with all of "Crimetime After Primetime," because CBS had acquired David Letterman from NBC and given him that timeslot.  That first cancellation, the period between first and second season, is known as "the hiatus."  It lasted eighteen months.  Changing owners and distribution methods, FK returned not as a network show, but as a first-run syndicated series, with "Killer Instinct" officially premiering on Monday, September 12, 1994 (however, being syndicated, it actually aired on different nights in different markets).  FK changed owners again for its third season, and came to its finale, "Last Knight," officially on Friday, May 17, 1996 (personally, I mark that anniversary on May 18, when it aired where I lived).

We've never stopped loving our hard-to-explain, cult-favorite, vampire-cop show.  I hope we never will.

When and where did you first watch "Dark Knight"?

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Athelas K. Weedmalinaldarose on May 5th, 2012 08:28 pm (UTC)
Do you know, I don't actually recall when I saw the show as it turned out. It was the original pilot that hooked me. And I was really upset that the local CBS affiliate didn't pick up Crime Time After Prime Time because I had a VCR and wasn't afraid to use it (as my closet will attest).
Amy R.: Castbrightknightie on May 9th, 2012 02:57 am (UTC)
FK 20th Anniversary
I think that you, Wiliqueen and Leela_cat all brought fond memories of Nick Knight into "Dark Knight." :-)

How curious that your CBS station didn't play "Crimetime After Primetime"! This is the first I've heard of a US CBS station not airing first season. Was your area particularly conservative, or did it have special local programming in that slot?
Athelas K. Weedmalinaldarose on May 9th, 2012 10:21 am (UTC)
Re: FK 20th Anniversary
I don't recall what exactly was there, but I do remember perusing the TV Guide and being sorely disappointed, because I could see it in other markets, but not ours.

And no, we're not overly conservative. Not enough to block something like that, I wouldn't've thought.
Foxy11814foxy11814 on May 5th, 2012 08:42 pm (UTC)
My mom and I watched it the night it premiered on CBS's Crimetime After Primetime. :-)
Amy R.: Castbrightknightie on May 9th, 2012 02:57 am (UTC)
FK 20th Anniversary
How fun that you got to share it together!
PJ1228pj1228 on May 5th, 2012 09:23 pm (UTC)
How wonderful to memorize the 20-year anniversary. I had to wait two more years before FK aired in Germany. That means I'm a fan for 18 years now. Isn't is fascinating that a series with only 3 seasons is still so very foremost in our minds?
Happy anniversary FK!
PJ1228pj1228 on May 5th, 2012 09:39 pm (UTC)
>When and where did you first watch "Dark Knight"?<

Ooops, I forgot to answer the question.
Dark Knight was one of the last episodes I watched. I started watching with 1966 in 1994. So I had missed Dark Knight. Season 2 aired in 1995. Here I got my first glimpses of Dark Knight during the flashback of Close Call. I saw the original pilot before finally season 1 was rerun around 1997. I remember that the rerun coincided with the installation of my cable TV, which came 1 week before Dark Knight aired.
Amy R.: Castbrightknightie on May 9th, 2012 03:05 am (UTC)
FK 20th Anniversary
In FK's day, it was the custom in the US and Canada to rerun an entire season (over the summer) before airing the next season. I didn't know, and wouldn't have guessed, that you would have had to wait so long before having reruns available in Germany! Interesting.
PJ1228pj1228 on May 9th, 2012 05:15 am (UTC)
Re: FK 20th Anniversary
That's probably because the first season aired exactly one year before season 2, so there was no hiatus to fit in a rerun of season 1. And season 3 never aired on free TV, only on pay TV. I hope it will come out on DVD soon so that I can watch it in better quality than my poor video tapes.
honor_reid: Nataliehonor_reid on May 6th, 2012 05:43 am (UTC)
Happy Anniversary FK!

I believe I was late to the party because the first time I saw it was when it reran on Sci-Fi channel(before they changed their name) I totally feel in love with Nick, Natalie, Schanke, Lacroix, and all the others.

Amy R.: Castbrightknightie on May 9th, 2012 03:00 am (UTC)
FK 20th Anniversary
It's always a good time, and never too late, to discover FK! :-) There are people around who discovered it on DVD.

(Although, personally, I think that the DVD packaging is sadly misleading, promising too much vampirism, too little mystery and history... and so earning fewer new viewers than FK deserves.)
honor_reid: Nataliehonor_reid on May 10th, 2012 08:35 pm (UTC)
Re: FK 20th Anniversary
I have always thought the packaging was a little dark. Because sure it is a story about vampires but it has so much more at the heart of it.(so to speak;)

greerwatsongreerwatson on May 6th, 2012 07:13 pm (UTC)
It's been a good twenty years, hasn't it? However, I wasn't around at the start.

Although I'd heard that there was supposed to be a new show starting about a vampire cop, I didn't see Forever Knight listed in the TV Guide, and therefore assumed it was a pilot that hadn't been picked up. (Clearly, it never occurred to me to look for it so late at night in the listings. Who ever heard of a first-run show after the late night news?) However, a couple of years later, the TV Guide said that it was returning, so I kept an eye out. That means that I started with Season Two, more or less—the "more or less" being the fact that CTV actually started Season Two by running several episodes from late in Season One, and only ran "Killer Instinct" in November!

So I didn't get to see the first season until the show came on in reruns; and, here in Canada, we had to wait a year for that. Perversely, the station that ran them was Showcase; and, as far as I can tell, they ran the American version. Certainly, when—a couple of years later—Space: the Imagination Station started reruns, I saw bits and pieces that I'd never seen before (and hence did a whole new set of videotapes). Yes, I'm Canadian, yet I got much the same experience of Season One that an American viewer must have had!

As for "Dark Knight", I guess it would have been sometime late in 1997? Or maybe even 1998—anyway, it would have been whenever Showcase began its reruns. Quite a shock seeing how young everyone looked. (The hiatus is to thank for that, of course.) Indeed, there was quite a different look to the show that first season. I know people consider it the "lightest" season in other respects; but visually it seems dark to me. More night streets, maybe.
Amy R.: Castbrightknightie on May 9th, 2012 03:09 am (UTC)
FK 20th Anniversary
The order in which people see the seasons in general, and the episodes in particular, often intrigues me! I also saw most of first season mostly last in my own viewing -- although I got to see it while third season was still in progress -- and I often suspect that seeing first season last magnified its impact for me.

Thanks for sharing.
Valerie - Postmodern Pollyanna: natpackerwiliqueen on May 8th, 2012 12:22 am (UTC)
In my parents' living room, well past my usual bedtime, on its first airing. With great squee.

I was very, very lucky that some friends in Denver were fans of a couple other "Crimetime After Primetime" shows, and had therefore seen the promos that made them go "Wait, those lines sound familiar-- NO WAY!"

And the rest, as they say, is history. Long, often strange, never dull fannish history. Full of fantastic people. :-)
Amy R.: Castbrightknightie on May 9th, 2012 03:10 am (UTC)
FK 20th Anniversary
How wonderful for us all that you liked Nick Knight in the first place, and that your friends saw the promos, and your parents let you watch the TV so late, and...! :-)

Thanks for sharing your memory! Thanks for being here all along. ♥
waltdwaltd on May 8th, 2012 08:55 am (UTC)
20 Years Ago Today . . .
. . . Sgt. Pepper taught the band to play.

No,that's not it.

I don't remember when I first saw FK, but it must have been early on because I clearly remember the "Crimetime after Primetime" logo being flashed across the screen. I'm glad that one instance of it was included on the 1st season DVD.

I liked a couple of the other shows; Tropical Heat and Silk Stalkings were a couple of them. FK was the best though.

A good friend of mine watched the show with me, although she was in her house about 20 miles away. We'd watch it at the same time and then call each other during the commercials with "Did you see that?" and "Damn LaCroix!". It was great fun.

Over the years, I'd catch the reruns, but they were pretty spotty. Finally I spotted the 1st and 2nd season DVDs at WalMart; bought them (of course) and then sat on the couch, turned the DVD player on and was in hog heaven for the next couple of days. I re-watched them in order, and limited myself to 4 episodes a day, to make it last, to be able to savor, and to allow my roommate to remain sane and not kill me.
Amy R.: Castbrightknightie on May 9th, 2012 03:13 am (UTC)
Re: 20 Years Ago Today . . .
That "Crimetime After Primetime" moment on the first DVD was such an unexpected treat! It blew me away, the first time. Thank goodness that it did not come with the cropped "Crimetime After Primetime" version of first season, though. :-)

Thank you for sharing your memory!