A review of Children’s ITV in 1994, especially the early autumn when Knightmare Series 8 was broadcast.

The end is nigh

In June 1994, Vanessa Chapman became the Controller of Children's Programmes at ITV. Many discussions took place behind the scenes about Knightmare’s future.

[See 'The History of Knightmare'.]

Meanwhile, CITV continued with the out-of-vision continuity established by the previous controller, Dawn Airey. The teaser for Knightmare used a scroll.

  • Voiceover: "The toughest challenge on television in a brand-new series."
  • Lord Fear: "Knightmare, next!"

There was also a post-Knightmare continuity teaser for the following week, featuring Lissard.

Voiceover: Well, next week our four hardy friends lurch deeper into the trap-laden dungeon. Lord Fear doubles his resolve to stop them with even more fearsome foes. Are they up to the job? Find out next time!

Flagship trailers

Trailers included an autumn campaign called 'Feel the Dark', which promoted flagship programmes such as Children's Ward, Knightmare, How 2, Wolf, and Bad Influence.

Another conceptual trailer showcased the variety of programming on offer. Knightmare gets categorised under 'Strategy', with keywords including war, game, competition and advantage.

Another took its influence from Knightmare and early VR technology, as a boy wearing a helmet dives into the CITV logo.

Stay Safe

Finally, CITV's Stay Safe campaign: a public service information broadcast that encouraged children to take extra care on Bonfire Night.

It aired ahead of the penultimate episode of Knightmare (4 November 1994), when winning dungeoneer Dunstan evaded fireballs (among other hazards) to reach Level 3.

What became of CITV after Knightmare?

In 1998, Nigel Pickard became the new controller. He decided to reinstate the in-vision service, with new presenters and a new studio.

In 2004, the CITV studio was converted into Central’s newsroom and out-of-vision continuity returned.

CITV celebrated its 20th birthday in 2003, and lots of familiar faces returned.

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