Challenge TV 'talked endlessly' about bringing back Knightmare

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Drassil
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Challenge TV 'talked endlessly' about bringing back Knightmare

Post by Drassil » Sat Aug 17, 2019 11:35 am

In a recent Twitter thread about Knightmare and how a revival could work, one tweet is particularly interesting. It's from Dom Wilkins, whose career is in TV scheduling.

When I looked after Challenge we talked about bringing it back endlessly but was cost prohibitive for a small channel because of worries about making the computer stuff look good but maybe a simpler approach would work as per stage show

According to Dom's LinkedIn page, he was Challenge's Scheduling Manager from 2011-2015 (covering its most recent Knightmare repeats and the YouTube special) and Acting Director for part of 2012.

It's good to know that Challenge's appreciation of Knightmare, at its height, was even greater than we thought.

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Re: Challenge TV 'talked endlessly' about bringing back Knightmare

Post by Librase » Tue Aug 20, 2019 7:32 pm

That is interesting to read. I always had the impression that Challenge didn't value Knightmare that much but it seems they did more than I thought!

Unfortunately, I fear they might have been right about it not being cost-effective for the size of their channel and audience (we would have loved it, but there's not a lot of us!). It would be interesting to see how a stage show or purely live-action version would do, especially in the light of the success of web shows like Critical Role (which streams a group of voice actors playing Dungeons and Dragons).

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Re: Challenge TV 'talked endlessly' about bringing back Knightmare

Post by EvelynMason » Tue Sep 03, 2019 12:25 am

Endlessly is hard to fathom, you get the idea they discussed day and night about the prospect of bringing the series back but I don't think it's as clear cut as that. I'll be truthful I hardly watch Challenge, the Chase and Who Wants to be a Millionaire is OK now and again for general knowledge purposes but there's endless repeats of Bullseye (I must have seen every series) and then things like Family Fortunes, Wheel of Fortune and Pointless where interest is minimal at best.

Any DVD release seems never to occur, if it hasn't been introduced already then perhaps it never will so that only leaves specific freeview channels and Challenge seems best bet. I don't use Youtube (to watch the old series) as on pay as you go contracts and it uses up too much credit to really get involved as I would like.

When was Knightmare even on freeview regularly ? I think maybe six, seven years ago but even then it was only one or two episodes back to back. Not nearly enough to satisfy real enthusiasts of the show. :(

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Re: Challenge TV 'talked endlessly' about bringing back Knightmare

Post by Pooka » Thu Sep 12, 2019 12:44 pm

EvelynMason wrote:
Tue Sep 03, 2019 12:25 am
When was Knightmare even on freeview regularly ? I think maybe six, seven years ago but even then it was only one or two episodes back to back. Not nearly enough to satisfy real enthusiasts of the show. :(
A few years back - and the actual date escapes me somewhat but I'm thinking 2013 - Challenge (then styled Challenge?) showed Knightmare every Friday evening as part of an 80s nostalgia block (one episode of Fun House, followed by one episode Knightmare Series 1 or 2), and as far as I'm aware, that's the last time it was regularly on.

Years earlier than that, Challenge? showed all eight series of Knightmare at various times. I never managed to catch all the episodes, as they seemed to keep changing the times it was on, but it was nice to see it all again in its glory!
Pooka - teacher, writer, comedian, musician, geek, and full-time Knightmarian.

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Re: Challenge TV 'talked endlessly' about bringing back Knightmare

Post by Drassil » Fri Sep 13, 2019 5:53 pm

EvelynMason wrote:
Tue Sep 03, 2019 12:25 am
When was Knightmare even on freeview regularly ? I think maybe six, seven years ago but even then it was only one or two episodes back to back. Not nearly enough to satisfy real enthusiasts of the show. :(
To give you an accurate answer to your question: Challenge repeated Series 3 most recently from Sunday 28th August 2016, as reported by us at the time.

The 'Challenge Late Zone' repeats of Fun House Series 1-2 and Knightmare Series 1-2 from Friday 10th May 2013 were significant as the first showings of Knightmare on free-to-air TV since the 1990s. The continuity announcements by Hugo Myatt made it even better. The Challenge staff's conversations about bringing back Knightmare may well have started at that point.

Challenge did not have the question mark in 2013, having dropped it 10 years earlier.

Librase wrote:
Tue Aug 20, 2019 7:32 pm
It would be interesting to see how a stage show or purely live-action version would do, especially in the light of the success of web shows like Critical Role (which streams a group of voice actors playing Dungeons and Dragons).
I'm guessing that by 'stage show', Dom Wilkins was referring to Knightmare Live (though there was a play in the '90s with Hugo Myatt and David Learner).

Knightmare Live has been going for six years now and has had a good reception. Its simplicity has worked well in informal, live settings - not least its physical take on the Corridor of Blades - but TV is a different prospect.

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