What made 2018 a memorable year for Knightmare?
We've chosen 10 bits and pieces you may have missed.
1. Knightmare's greatness was acknowledged by 'the other side' when CBBC took inspiration for its game show Last Commanders. Read our Last Commanders article to find out how this was a dream come true for members of the production crew.
2. Knightmare Live continued to entertain watchers up and down the realm. Among the contestants were the Oliver Twins, creators of Dizzy. (If you're a fan but have never played the fan game Knightmare Dizzy, I highly recommend it.)
Next year's dates will include PLAY Expo Manchester in May, guest-starring Hugo Myatt. He and Knightmare artist David Rowe will also be there as guests in their own left. I mean right.
As continuous fans of Knightmare Live, and continual fans of round numbers, we were pleased to look back on five years of Knightmare Live.
3. Hugo Myatt had more convention appearances in 2018, we reckon, than in any previous year. They included:
- LarpCon in Coalville - complete with comedy video
- Sci-Fi Weekender 9 in Wales - another Knightmare Live cameo and a crossing of paths with Smirkenorff maker Mark Cordory
- Stoke Con Trent
- EM-Con Nottingham - with thanks to Emma Bailey Ceramics for the photo of Hugo with the personalised mug she made for him
- PLAY Expo London - with Knightmare Live and David Rowe
- Middlesbrough Unleashed
- Nor-Con in Norfolk - In a return to Treguard's roots, Hugo spoke to ITV Anglia. He also gave a brilliant intro to this video.
Hugo has more conventions booked in for 2019, including WatCon One (Watford) and Sci-Fi Scarborough. We'd like him to take over as Prime Minister next year too, but one thing at a time.
4. We were also treated to insightful interviews with Hugo Myatt in The Malestrom and on BBC Radio Norfolk. Among other things, we learned that Hugo:
- heard a radio programme about children's theatre and joined a company. They "drove round in a converted ambulance... and did 2-4 shows a day... mostly schools... 2 bob a head". This was in the mid-1960s. Hugo loved it and carried on.
- has done 38 pantomimes and over 170 plays in total.
- has directed 64 plays.
- met Sylvester McCoy the night before a convention they did together. (Sylvester's debut in Doctor Who was 7th September 1987, hours after Hugo's debut as Treguard.)
5. Knightmare contestant Katharine Bennett-Fox was mentioned by the Daily Express, which accused her of (or should that be credited her with?) giving viewers nightmares with her role in a Barclays advert.
6. As for Knightmare actors, Joanne Heywood (Stiletta, Series 8) had no such notoriety with her TV ad appearances this year, which included Maltesers and Heinz soup. Edmund Dehn (Gumboil, Giant, Igneous, Automatum - Series 1 and 2) remains one of Knightmare's busiest stage actors. In 2018 that included two one-man plays: Krapp's Last Tape and Death of a Hunter.
7. Books: David Rowe's fabulous Art of Knightmare was reprinted, so do treat yourself to a copy if you're without one. Knightmare gamebook author Dave Morris released his latest: Can You Brexit Without Breaking Britain?
We were also pleased to hear that a biography of Guy Standeven, the first actor to play an in-dungeon character on Knightmare, is in the works. So is the second volume of Scarred for Life, which will cover the '80s and looks set to include Knightmare.
8. We've continued adding to Knightmare.com. List articles are practically a legal obligation these days and ours this year have included:
Browse our Series 1-8 sections and you'll find we now have a dedicated page for each of the series' teams, including contact we've had with the contestants over the years.
We fully intend to keep expanding the website through 2019: its 20th anniversary year.
On a personal note, the Knightmare.com team enjoyed being at a wedding this year where Knightmare played a part. As well as being mentioned in the speeches, there was a themed Dunshelm table. A most agreeable way to boost Life Force.
9. Knightmare became available on Sky Box Sets. That is, they put up some of Knightmare Series 3 but even that doesn't seem to be there now. Legal means of watching Knightmare are the only means we can support, so we hope Sky will do the left thing... sorry, right thing... in 2019.
10. Knightmare art you can put in your knapsack? Syd Lington shared a highly impressive jack o' lantern on social media.
You can find more of 2018's Knightmare happenings by browsing back through the posts on our homepage. Here's hoping for plenty of pleasant surprises in the next twelve months.
In the meantime, because even the escapism of a treasured childhood TV series isn't always enough, we'd like to reiterate an important message that we shared on social media:
Sometimes all you can hear is the goblin horn. Sometimes Level 1 feels like Level 3. Sometimes your life force seems stuck on red. But however hard the quest gets, please remember: you're less alone than you think.