Series 5, Quest 7. Julius Scaramonger sells Christopher a spell.

Forgery in Knightmare

By Keith McDonald

It's a phrase that has become synonymous with American politics. If there's anything the good old POTUS doesn't want to hear, it's 'fake news'.

The fun with 'fake news', of course, is that you're never quite sure if it's fake or not. It's just branded 'fake' to shut down the argument.

Back on April Fool's Day, we looked at Knightmare's moments of deceit. Here, we take a slight tangent to think about Knightmare's falsehoods, fake news and forgery.

1. Merlin - all is not lost, except it is!

Before Merlin sent Julie off to become a goblin's supper in Series 3 (1989), he consoles the team by pointing out that she still has a fighting chance of completing the level without his aid. "Remember, others have done so and still survived." What!? I call bullshit, professor!

Knightmare Series 3 Team 10. Julie reaches Merlin the Magician.

2. Scaramonger - change or switch?

"If I may say so, a very, very wise choice!" The wily Julius Scaramonger diddled a young team into buying a spell that turned their dungeoneer, Chris, into a goblin. We've got various theories about this quest (forthcoming) but it's the old wink to the wise that really rubs it in.

Knightmare Series 5 Team 7. Christopher meets Julius Scaramonger in Level 2.

3. Greystagg - thou shalt not pass.

Oh, when Knightmare was political! A fallout between Lord Fear and Greystagg the Witch Queen made the end of the 1992 season very tense indeed. She is adamant that nobody will cross their causeway, but the offer of witch amber prompts an immediate change of heart.

Knightmare Series 6 Team 7. Greystagg glares at Chris.

4. Majida, what are you on about?

Does Majida go off-piste? During Dunston's winning quest in Series 8 (1994), she suggests that a perfectly legitimate-looking trade had been, in fact, a con! "That Motley made joke on us." Treguard awkwardly tries to excuse her interruption. (00:30 secs)

5. Oh, magic horn of mine!

Fair play to this team from Gillingham. Rushed into grabbing the wrong clue object and finding themselves in a pickle, they try to hoodwink Skarkill with a fake story about a magic horn. Unfortunately, it comes back to shackle Richard on the wrist.

Knightmare Series 5 Team 2. Skarkill threatens Richard in a cavern.

6. "I know you do not lie."

Knightmare's most gormless monster, the Brollachan, was apparently able to tell if you were lying, but not if you were convincingly trying to deceive it with a wrong answer. Ironically, for something that didn't like lying, you couldn't really trust a single threat it made.

Knightmare Series 7 Team 1. Lord Fear speaks to his new shape-shifting monster, the Brollachan.

7. I'll get you, Hands... somehow.

Series 7's dragon warden, Romahna, was pretty hopeless. She was frequently captured by Fear's henchmen, even when she was warned about them in advance. Her threat of revenge against Sylvester Hands feels emptier all the time.

Knightmare Series 7 Team 2. Sylvester Hands demonstrates the trick he used to capture Romahna.

8. "She might be lying, actually." Plonker!

Having said that, Romahna regains some credibility for snapping at one dungeoneer who foolishly accuses her of lying to his team while she's stood right in front of him. She doesn't let him escape that without a ticking off.

Knightmare Series 7 Team 1. Romahna argues with the dungeoneer in a courtyard.

9. No right turn.

What the hell was this about? A scroll reads 'No right turn' at the beginning of a one-way dwarf tunnel. Advisor Claire has to point out through gritted teeth, 'There's nowhere else to go'. Does it mean every turn is wrong? Even Pickle asks where this sort of guff comes from - PICKLE!

10. "There were no retakes."

The cast and crew state that Knightmare was filmed live with no retakes. But that's a slight porky as well. We know of a few, including the Block and Tackle and the Corridor of Blades (which is shown in some outtakes). There's even a theory that one team restarted to collect a TRUTH spell, though it didn't keep them alive for long. Perhaps a DARE spell next time?

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