THE OFFICIAL WEBSITE
New Knightmare EpisodeAfter nearly 20 years of waiting, Knightmare returned for a special one-off episode as part of YouTube's 2013 Geek Week. Be sure to watch it, pass it along to your friends, and let the world know that we're ready for a new series. Read More
Knightmare PilotAfter scouting the web for Knightmare references, Billy Hicks was lucky enough to come across the website of Richard Bonehill, a professional swordsman. Richard had played a character in the pilot episode of Knightmare, and incredibly, the script to the original pilot episode was available to buy. Billy snapped up the script and is here to share both his story and the script in all its detail. Read More
Knightmare.com UncoveredThe transfer to the new site required an excavation of all the deepest corners of the Knightmare online kingdom. What's more, the amount of hidden material that has been uncovered has been astonishing. Keith McDonald shares a few favourite finds, and spells a few hopes for the future of the site. Read More
AegisQuestAegisQuest is a live-action RPG in which a group of advisors guide a blind quester through a dungeon of riddles, puzzles and traps in a Dungeons & Dragons style adventure. Despite being unrelated to Knightmare, it has a few similarities with the show we all know and love, and is well worth watching. The team behind AegisQuest has released a short pilot episode of their production. Read More
Welcome to knightmare.com, the home of the award-winning children's adventure game show, Knightmare. Knightmare was shown from 1987 to 1994 on CITV in the UK and was produced by broadsword television ltd. On this site you will find detailed guides, clips, and pictures from the show as well as interviews with the cast and crew, fan creations, copies of the magazines, and a history of the show written by its creator, Tim Child. The site has been mentioned on talkSPORT, Xfm, Cult Times, Micro Mart, UKGameshows.com, The Guardian, Challenge.co.uk, and Retro Gamer Magazine!
If you're new to Knightmare, we suggest beginning with the Introduction, which explains all about the show and how it worked. If you like what you see, please consider signing the Guestbook and mention us to your friends. You may also wish to consider joining the mailing list to receive site updates.
- Cliff Barry
- David Verrey
- Isy Suttie
- Lord Fear
- Mark Knight
- Red Dwarf
Latest Forum Posts
In total, 112 episodes of Knightmare were made (of 23-25 minutes in length). The budget for each episode was £50,000, making it very expensive for a game show but cheap for a drama. See more about each series of Knightmare (and Children's ITV) in the following guides:
Audio and video clips can be found amongst the individual Series Guides, or within the Clips section.
There were eight winning teams over the eight series as follows (thanks to Billy Hicks for compiling this):
A Brief Timeline of Knightmare (1985-2014)
The idea for Knightmare was established and the format went into development. See The History of Knightmare.
Chromakey tests are conducted in Anglia TV's Studio A. The first pilot episode was filmed, entitled Dungeon Doom. Later, a second pilot is filmed with improved opening titles and additional life force graphics. The name is changed to Knightmare. The finished pilot is viewed by the ITV Children's Committee, who decide to commission 8 half-hour episodes.
Series 1 goes into production and is transmitted from Monday 7th September 1987 at 4.45pm - the year that Children's ITV introduces live presentation. A second series of 16 episodes is commissioned.
Series 2 is transmitted from Monday 5th September 1988. A Children's ITV competition invites viewers to design a dungeon chamber. Presenter Mark Granger also speaks to dungeoneer Mark Wickson after their winning episode. Knightmare wins a bronze medal from the Youth Programmes category of the New York International Film & TV Awards 1988. Another series of 16 episodes is commissioned by ITV.
Series 3 is transmitted from Friday 8th September 1989. Another series of 16 episodes is commissioned.
Broadsword produces The Satellite Game for The Children's Channel on BSB Satellite, starring David Learner, who became Treguard's first assistant in Knightmare Series 4.
A French version of Knightmare, Le Chevalier du Labyrinthe, and a Spanish version, El Rescate du Talisman, are commissioned and go into production in their respective countries.
Series 4 introduces new outdoor scenes, which contrast against the painted rooms of the earlier series. A new 'Eye Shield' enables players to view the path the dungeoneer is taking. Series 4 is transmitted from Friday 7th September 1990. Another series of 16 episodes commissioned.
A German production of Knightmare is agreed with RTL. Broadsword Television will make an initial series of 50 episodes in Norwich, and then export the production to Cologne. However, this is later cancelled.
Knightmare Series 5 is transmitted from Friday 6th September 1991. We see the introduction of Smirkenorff the dragon and a new Leader of the Opposition, Lord Fear. Another series of 15 episodes commissioned.
Series 6 is transmitted from Friday 11th September 1992. Another series of 15 episodes is commissioned. Knightmare narrowly fails to win the Royal Television Society award for best children's programme - a decision allegedly described as a 'travesty' by a broadsheet critic.
Broadsword produces TimeBusters for Children's BBC, starring many Knightmare actors. Majida is introduced as the new assistant to Treguard, replacing Pickle. Series 7 transmitted from Friday 10th September 1993.
At the end of filming for Series 7, the production team is kept for two extra days to film a pilot episode for the US market, titled Lords of the Game. The British cast is retained except for Hugo Myatt, who is replaced by an American actor. Players are supplied from the US air base in Mildenhall, Suffolk. American production companies remain unsure about the technical complexity of chroma-key production and there is no commission.
A new controller of children's programming, Dawn Airey, decides to re-commission Knightmare for a shorter series of 10 episodes. Figures suggest that the average age of child viewers has fallen below that of Knightmare's target audience. A potential successor to Knightmare, Virtually Impossible, aimed at a younger audience, was also commissioned.
Series 8 goes into production with a return to textured dungeon environments. It is transmitted from Friday 9th September 1994 followed by a short series of Broadsword's new show, Virtually Impossible.
Knightmare continues to attract good viewing figures - in excess of five million. Virtually Impossible doesn't prove popular. After much discussion between Broadsword, Anglia Television and ITV, neither programme is re-commissioned.
ITV controller of Children's Programmes, Vanessa Chapman, replies to letters blaming the demise of Knightmare on a fall in ratings. Broadsword explains that Knightmare should ideally be rested until the technology is better developed for Knightmare to go into full VR.
Broadsword meets with Children's BBC to discuss a possible transfer of Knightmare from ITV, but negotiations fail due to copyright reasons and other factors. As a result, Broadsword develops a new adventure game show, The Sword of the Sorcerer, for Children's BBC. Despite much interest, it is not commissioned.
Knightmare repeats begin on the Sci-Fi channel in the UK and Europe.
Knightmare repeats continue on the Sci-Fi channel.
The Eye Shield launches a Bring Back Knightmare campaign, though it struggles to gain momentum as a print-based magazine with limited readership.
The Sci-Fi Channel begins repeating Knightmare again to UK cable viewers until October. The 3-year rights package expires mid-way through Series 4.
Launch of Knightmare.com. The Bring Back Knightmare campaign is re-launched with further letters and petitions sent to TV companies, though without much success.
In response to the speculation over the reasons behind the demise of Knightmare, Tim Child writes The History of Knightmare, revealing the true story for the first time.
More people re-discover Knightmare on the web and join in the campaign. Televirtual (formerly Broadsword) announces that it has new adventure game formats in development.
The website continues to grow with contributions from production staff, former contestants, fans, actors and Anglia TV. The ongoing popularity of Knightmare is confirmed through a ranking of 16th place in Channel 4's 100 Greatest Kid's TV Shows.
Challenge purchases the rights to show Knightmare Series 3 as part of the Cult Selection feature from 24 December at Christmas and beyond. A short documentary is filmed with Tim Child and Hugo Myatt.
The format rights to Knightmare revert back from Anglia to Televirtual, and subsequently Televirtual announce details of a reformat, Knightmare VR, in development with Lottery funding. An adult format named TimeGate is also announced.
Granada Media is rumoured to be interested in DVD releases of the original Knightmare episodes. Challenge purchases Series 4 and broadcasts the episodes from 2 June in prime time. It later purchases the rights for Series 5 and broadcasts from 20 October.
Televirtual wins Lottery funding for the development of a demonstrator for Knightmare VR.
Five years of Knightmare.com. Challenge buys the rights for Series 6, 7 and 8. Series 6 commences in mid-April, followed by re-runs of all Knightmare episodes, starting from Series 1!
Knightmare Series 5 and 6 are believed to have aired on New York 55 TV station for a brief period, and also on the US Sci-Fi Channel for about a year. Exact details of these broadcasts are unknown.
Televirtual hosts a launch event in London to showcase the Knightmare VR demonstrator to industry bodies. A pilot episode for Knightmare VR is recorded, and clips are made available online. The pilot receives mixed reviews, and no commission is made.
Knightmare appears on 'Children's TV on Trial' (BBC Four). Knightmare is included to demonstrate a more modern, darker theme that was emerging through children’s television of the 80s.
Knightmare rises like a Phoenix. On 5 January, CiTV celebrates 30 years with an Old Skool Weekend schedule packed full of classic shows. The final two episodes of Series 7 are included. Challenge also begins repeats of Series 1 and 2 from May.
A group of actors and comedians led by Paul Flannery form a commemorative stage show called Knightmare Live. After several successful trials, the show goes on to feature at the Edinburgh Fringe.
Remarkably, after almost 20 years of waiting, Knightmare returns for a special one-off episode as part of YouTube's 'Geek Week'.
Knightmare is voted best ever kids' TV show following a 'Kids TV Champ' competition by Radio Times. Artist David Rowe announces his 'Art of Knightmare' project, including a book of his compositions.
The first ever Knightmare Convention is held at Epic Studios in Norwich, where the show was originally filmed. Guests included Hugo Myatt (Treguard), Mark Knight (Lord Fear), Clifford Barry (Lissard), Iona Kennedy (Sidriss), and David Rowe.