Fireball Alley, a puzzle in Series 8 (1994).

Series 8 Quest 1

By Keith McDonald

Team 1: Richard, Angela, Rebecca and Rowena from Bracknell.


The first quest of Series 8 was for the Crown and lasted 14 minutes.

Knightmare Series 8 Team 1. Richard, the dungeoneer.

Pre-quest

Treguard: "The gate opens, the visor closes!"

He closes the gate using the chain as Richard scampers through the staging.

Treguard: "Look to the pool, girls. GAME ON!"

Level 1

The quest begins in a long narrow cave. (It's the first time since Series 5 that a quest has begun with eye shield footage.)

Knightmare Series 8 Team 1. An Eye Shield view of the Snapdragon Tunnels in Level 1.

As Richard appears in view, snap-dragons try to attack from the walls.

Brother Strange appears. "I beg no proverbs from you in this dire place."

He asks Richard for news. The team warn him about the snap dragons, and earn a spyglass.

The spyglass reveals Lord Fear's new high-tech environment.

Knightmare Series 8 Team 1. Lord Fear and Lissard marvel at the view from the new tower of Marblehead.

Lord Fear: "Yes, quite a neat little pad. I mean, not over-pretentious but entirely in keeping with one's circumstances."

Just as Fear describes his new spy-detecting counter-measure, it launches a fireball towards the viewer. Richard drops the glass just in time.

Knightmare Series 8 Team 1. A Level 1 scroll reads: Green for a girl, black for a boy.

The Level 1 clue room. The scroll says: "Green for a girl, black for a boy."

The clues are: a bar of gold, a green knife, a key and some pigeon droppings. They deliberate a while, before eventually choosing the key and the bottle.

Treguard: "It can't be... Get Richard out of there quickly!"

A red dragon's head bursts into shot just as Richard exits the room. (He remembers the discussion.)

The first table had amongst other things a green dagger. We spent about half an hour arguing about it - Rebecca and Rowena were at it hammer and tongs (all cut from the final edit) about taking the knife...

Richard Howse

Knightmare Series 8 Team 1. Richard pauses between ducts as fireballs shoot across his path.

Into Fireball Alley, where the team successfully direct Richard through a sequence of fireballs firing from left to right.

They enter a stone room with a statue and a chest. Treguard says it is a tribute to Motley, who hadn't been seen since Series 6.

Treguard: "He used to call himself the world greatest entertainer. That was before the opposition nabbed him."

As Richard investigates the chest, a warrior appears and draws a knife.

Stiletta: "Out of there, cavern scum!"

Knightmare Series 8 Team 1. Richard encounters the new warrior thief, Stiletta.

Richard assures her that he is not stealing. The woman introduces herself as Stiletta, a warrior thief. She explains she has lost one of her knives - her number four.

The team offer to tell her where it is in exchange for information. She declines, and heads off for target practice.

You haven't actually taken anything from me, I don't think. But you haven't returned anything to me either. So the code says: I don't owe you anything!

Stiletta

They decide to follow the clue and use the pigeon droppings on Motley, which releases him from the enchantment.

Knightmare Series 8 Team 1. The returning Motley the Jester listens while perched on Richard's shoulder

Motley learns that he has been frozen for a long time and that Lord Fear is now equipped with fireballs and snapdragons. He agrees to help Richard to Level 2.

They enter the trapdoor room, but a combination puzzle covers the exit. Motley is helpless.

Motley: "I tell you - it's that Stiletta women you need. She's very good at these sorts of things."


Death

The red dragon approaches again, causing Motley to flee the scene.

Bhal-Shebah: "Oh good. A tasty helping of dinner. Now the only question for us is: cooked or raw?"

Knightmare Series 8 Team 1. The red dragon Bhal Shebah fries Richard with a fireball.

It engulfs Richard in a fireball.

Treguard: "Oooh, nasty"

It's not fair, Treguard. Without this Stiletta, there is no way out of Level 1?

Majida


Hear from the team

In February 2000, Richard Howse signed the Guestbook.

I was the first contestant for Series 8. It was great. I wasn't supposed to be the dungeoneer, but due to production decisions I ended up donning the helmet and crashing into portcullises and walls.

It was great fun, and I've have loved to have gone back now that I'm an actor to play it from the other side as one of the characters. Oh well, life goes on!

Richard's audition and experience

In December 2016, Rebecca and Rowena discussed their quest.

Knightmare Series 8 Team 1. The advisors: Angela, Rebecca and Rowena.
Angela, Rebecca and Rowena

Rebecca is co-host of the Time for Cakes and Ale podcast. She was joined by fellow advisor Rowena to reminisce about their Knightmare experience, from application and audition to filming and feedback.

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