I''ve been transferring my Knots Landing tapes to digital, since they refuse to release the remaining box sets. It has allowed me to revisit the cul de sac. There were a couple of clunker episodes but, all in all, it was a good show for its entire run.
Knots Landing sucked after the new neighbors moved into Laura''s house.
Hell yes, it had plenty. Does that answer your QUESTION, OP?
Abby, chilling in my pink terry robe
Actually, I wasn't fond of the first 3 seasons - the show however, was simply finding it's footing and it did get better with each passing season and then maintained a high quality after season 3.
The show stumbled - badly - in one of the later seasons (I forget which one). The previous season ended with Linda being involved in an elaborate set up of Paige for murder which brought Det. Ryan back, and Karen had gone speeding after some paint ball attackers and when the car crashed, she found out the young man they had taken in was in the crashed car.
The following season saw the introduction of a whole new writing team and every single story from the cliffhanger was dropped. Ryan was no longer investigating Paige and was never seen that season, the whole set up of Paige was dropped and Linda was killed off about four episodes later, and the boy had been forced into the car and was soon written off. Plus, they introduced a whole green earth project that Gary and Paige and new character (played By Bruce Greenwood) were involved with.
The audience left in droves and mid-season, they fired the new writers, brought back some previous writers, and the show got back on track. But Knots never fully recovered from that half-season misfire (plus, overall nighttime soaps were already in general decline) and was canceled within a season or two.
They had some bad fashion seasons towards the end. Behold Val''s early 90''s high waisted, fold down fly, acid washed jeans...with pleats and lotsa extra buttons!
I didn''t care for the later seasons. It was at it''s best, IMO in seasons 3-6. \
One of the most suspenseful, chilling moments of TV was the episode (SPOILER ALERT) when Ciji''s body washes ashore. The way that whole episode played out, where they cut between Ginger singing, shots of the cast, and the beach at night... then at the very end fading from the picture of Ciji to her body in the water! These were the days when you didn''t have 24/7 entertainment coverage, so I had no idea Lisa Hartman was leaving or that Ciji was being killed off, so it came as a complete shocker. Plus I was 13 or 14 at the time, so hadn''t watched enough TV to see this coming. But even rewatching that scene today, I still think it was really well done.
Season 13 (1991-92) was a bust; Season 14 (1992-93) was clear indication [italic]Knots Landing[/italic]) was over. You could tell with the budget-cutting, which included reduced episodes and/or appearances of top stars. %0D\
Michele Lee wanted to make certain she was in every episode of [italic]Knots[/italic]'' 14 seasons. She is, historically, the longest-running female lead in a TV drama series (we''ll see if [italic]Law & Order: Special Victims Unit[/italic] star Mariska Hargitay eclipses that in a couple years). But there were eppys, toward the end, in which Lee was barely seen. %0D\
The season where every second line was "My babies!"
Lee agreed to work for scale, so she could be in every episode.
I think the season it turned to pure camp was when Joan Van Ark, sporting a then-trendy early 90''s do, stir-fried her kids pet crabs for dinner.\
The then-forbidden interracial romance between the two teens was heavy-handed as well. I remember young the black actress complaining on "Geraldo" that she''d pissed off quite a few of her black friends doing that role.
r9 that teen interracial romance was in the 1990s, not the 1950s. It was hardly forbidden.
Another vote for the last two seasons. Killing off Linda was huge mistake, Anne Mathison going broke, Greg''s sister Claudia...it just all sucked.
I watched Space Cowboys last night just to watch Greg Sumner. God I still love that man.
Hey, who else is watching the Dallas marathon on CMT?%0D\
I think I have watched 6 shows in a row.%0D\
Didn''t like the 1st Gary (dark haired), Victoria Principal was 1 hell of a fresh faced beauty and I loved seeing Morgan Fairchild as Jenna Wade. And, Cliff was actually cute in the early episodes.%0D\
Oh, and they sure showed JR drinking a lot. Must have been Hagman''s influence.%0D
OK, count me in as a big fan of KL, but I think the show jumped the shark when they recast Linda as a blond who cheated on Eric and became a vilianess of some sort. I was glad when she turned up dead.
Of all the night time soaps, I think KL had the best chance for a spin-off with younger characters away from the cul-de-sac and their parents (except as guest stars).
Personally (and I know this sounds insane), I wish they had moved the show to Seattle or Portland where Olivia and Harold lived (Harold as private investigator), Laura's two sons could have been in town too (a real blast from the past) - at least one should have been a cop. Karen's son Michael could live there too, working in the software industry. Of course you need a place for them to meet and hang out and fight and plot and such, so that's why Cathy lives in town too, owning a bar/restaurant (the return of Lisa Hartman!).
It would have run for many seasons, with an occasional visits from Abbey (she never liked Harold), Valene (she and Olivia were close), Mac (he and Michael were friendly), etc...
Loved the Show - can you tell?
I was more of a DYNASTY fan during its initial run and didn''t catch KNOTS LANDING until TNT or TBS showed it in syndication. I was really impressed. Great show and hot, hot guys. I don''t remember the last couple of seasons but it was amazing in its first seasons.
The first season was way too earnest. It really started picking up in Season 2.
The series ended when Abby left, basically. She was to Knots what JR was to Dallas.
The show did suffer in the 13th season after the producers left to create "Homefront." They even had to shut production down for a few weeks and retool.
It was a little slow those final two seasons and definitely wasn't the same once Val left but the final episode came full circle and had a decent ending.
Fun fact: creator David Jacobs actually created Knots Landing [italic]before[/italic] Dallas. CBS rejected the concept, but thought the Gary Ewing character was interesting, and encouraged him to re-write the show about him and the Ewings instead, and that is why Dallas came first.
I liked the first 3 or 4 seasons best. The stories were realistic, if melodramatic, and the characters more relatable. It also had a very atmospheric late 70s/early 80s lazy Southern California feel to it, which I found very appealing. It started going OTT in season 5 with all the glitz and glamor. It really went off the rails in later seasons. The show was eventually canceled, not because of the falling ratings, but because of escalating production costs.
The best story was Jill Bennet forcing Val to OD on pills. She was nutso!
I could never understand what Sir Godfrey Tearle saw in Jill Bennett, until I saw her at the Caprice eating corn on the cob.
GARY: Val tried to commit suicide.
JILL: Tried to?! You mean... she's not... HOW IS SHE GARY?
The last 4 seasons were pretty bad, with season 13 (91-92) being the worst of the bunch.
The first 4 seasons are EXCELLENT and it captures that late 70s/early 80s California vibe perfectly plus I actually liked Kenny and Ginger.
Seasons 5&6 are the shows peak however and by this point Knots had entered full fledged mid 80s, glam nighttime soap mode
Big hair, over the top stories, stolen babies, Lisa Hartman and her mullet! Alec Baldwin as a crazy cable TV televangalist!, Greg Sumner as Senator, Laura more sarcastic than ever, Karen's pill addiction and Michele Lee chewing scenery to new heights! The amazing chemistry between Queen bitch Abby and Gary Ewing and JOAN VAN ARK BITCHES pre plastic surgery disaster.
The Wolfbridge stroryline was amazingly plotted, it hit every beat and the season ending cliffhanger with Karen being shot and Abby kidnapped had you on the edge of your seat
Also those seasons were so damn glammed up, that you could literally imagine Michele Lee, Joan Van Ark and Donna Mills getting ready to cut a bitch in the makeup room over the last remaining blue eye shadow
Don't laugh, but I used to beat off to the image of Ted Shackelford in his prime. He was one of my major JO fantasies in the 80s, along with Joe Penney.
I love how when Dallas had the dream season, Knots totally ignored the development and kept Bobby dead.
I must have only caught some of the last seasons. I remember Nicolette Sheridan, not Lisa Hartman.
Nice tribute to Knots for its 30th anniversary a few years ago:
14 years. mostly all good. knots landing was charming kitch soap with real people in the early seasons... it slowly grew into heavy drama adding murder and kidnapping but kept it together still in the toned down world of the suburbs as opposed o Dynasty and such... then in came the shoulder pads galore and big business and over the top stories (still awesomely fun)
around season 8 when they dropped cast for budget reasons, laura was gone, cathy, ben, lillie mae... in came nicolette sheridan, transitioning to a new direction.. it got a little dull...
as nicolette grew up and with willaim devane and michelle phillips coming in... it was still solid and became more fun and big time soapy... but the val karen smaller days were gone.
then the one thing happened in season 13 that just told me this show was done... VAL teaches a waitress how to read. FUCK YOU knots landing... kidnapped babies YES, bain cancer video goodbye 2 parter FUCK YES, alec balwin falling down a building OH YES YES DO IT DO IT... then Val teaches a mousy illiterate waitress how to read... limp dick get the fuck outta here bitch you're wasting my time
One aspect of KL that I think made it stand out were the children the families had and how they grew up realistically.
Personally, I've always thought that KL was ripe for a spin-off of some sort focusing on Michael, Olivia (with hubby Harold) and others.
I would have moved them up to Seattle or Portland (a hipper environment) and given them their own adventures, even re-introducing Laura and Richard's children.
Does anyone recall if the writers killed off Karen's oldest son or did he just disappear one season leaving the scheming (and re-cast) daughter-in-law in the cul-de-sac to screw Pat Peterson?
R35 David Jacobs was angling for a spin-off, with the younger cast members.
But by then in the late 80s, nighttime soaps were on the decline. CBS passed on the spin-off idea.
They were supposed to a summer spin-off around 86/87 centering on Michael, Paige, Olivia, Brian, Harold, and Johnny Rourke, and if successful would have gone long-term. Plans were eventually dropped.
The thing about "Knots" I did like- and this was intentional by the producers- was that they would try to show the characters doing something domestic at least once an episode whether it was doingthe dishes or taking out the trash or washing their cars. And it worked.
I loved all the kitchen scenes with Val and Karen.
As somebody put it best once, "Knots" was a daytime soap on at night.
I loved how they eventually just eased Cathy Geary into being Ciji, including singing the same songs.
Did Cathy do everything Ciji did, including scissoring with Laura?
Stopped watching when Nicolette Sheridan joined.
Never could stand that slimy whore.
the two seasons after Donna Mills left were still pretty good (Seasons 11 and 12), with Paige getting more airplay and Michele Philips as Anne...I liked Anne's homeless storyline.
Then as R3 said, season 13 got new writers that ruined the cliffhangers set up at the end of season 12. Then came the awful Tidal Energy storyline, killing off Linda (who i liked as a foil for Paige), bringing in Claudia and Kate, who were annoying and added nothing to the show. One thing i liked in S13 was Val going crazy again, but they resolved it so badly. Season 14 suffered from the loss of Valene, and by then you knew it was kinda over. Still love watching clips on youtube though!
The best story towards the end was Marie Cheatham being cast as Laura's wayward mom
If Ms. Cheatham had played her cards right, it would've been...
DAYS OF OUR LIVES
Sister Marie Horton
and not that skanky ginger
Maree was an original cast member of Days.
Michele Lee, Donna Mills, Joan Van Ark, Kevin Dobson, and Ted Shakelford will make public appearances at "The Hollywood Show" on October 4th-6th, 2013 in Los Angeles, CA
R41 - No, Hunt Block is not gay. A good friend of mine went to Vassar, and her roommate dated Block, and reported that he had a small dick -- which she appreciated because she hated giving blowjobs and a small dick made it easier for her.
need to bring it back. can have the ewing twins... brian austen fucking hot green... grown up meg... new neighbors... throw in karen as the crazy old lady still in the neighborhood... mac is dead... and val can visit now and then and be like lillie mae... but bring it back as a down to earth soap... would work
Was Karen's Polyanna speech actually intended as camp or did it turn into that by accident?
I would love to see the people behind the DALLAS reboot do the same for KNOTS LANDING.
the role of Laura was originally written with Patty Duke
she obviously did not get the part
The first half of the second to last season was pretty bad.
Ann Marcus came on halfway into the second to last season and made things immensely better.
She had Paige get shot; the whole family and friends gathered at the hospital.
Karen tried to make Ann (I think) feel better by talking about Sid and how he was in the hospital.
It just made the show feel like KNOTS again.
The finale was a love letter to long time fans.
Val came back. Abby came back. The only thing I didn't like was Abby lost out on a business deal; she didn't 'win'. And Abby ALWAYS won.
The season after Laura was killed off sucked.
I would have traded Danny, his looney ex-wife, and the whole Williams clan to pay for Constance McCashin's salary.
If there were goin' t'be a Knots reunion, would any of y'all recognize me?
That last shot of Laura driving off alone to go to a hospice where she'll eventually die was one of the biggest tearjerker moments of any nighttime soap.
And, finding out Gary was alive and Abby realizing that Val was carrying his babies just from a glance at Val's tummy at Gary's funeral were two of my favorite KL moments.
They killed off Laura but the next five seasons had so many storylines directly affected by her and her death that they may as well have kept her on. She never faded from memory.
It was a great touch that Greg entrusted Meg to Karen and Mac. And Maree Cheatham as Laura's biological mother did resemble McCashin somewhat.
There's a wonderful scene circa Season 12 when Gay and Val move back to the cul-de-sac after Gary loses the ranch and Val walks through the house and you hear dialogue from all the years past including Lilimae singing "Shady Grove" and then Val realizes she has no lightbulbs, just like in the first episode.
[R49], you are my new favorite person. That was fabulous.
The opening credits to the Knots reunion film in the mid 90s combined old clips with new ones. Look who turns up, says hello and waves goodbye again in the prologue:
Here is Camille Paglia's amazing interview with Donna Mills. Paglia equates the character of Abby Cunningham to a Botticelli painting, a ballet dancer and an essential avatar in the high culture of the 1980s. If you thought JR Ewing was iconic, wait til you read this article about his female counterpart!
[quote]Abby is fashion personified - a shimmering apparition glittering like a Byzantine cult object. She's like a self created Warhol superstar, living in a virtual world of her own divine fabulousness
Sorry to drag up an old thread but does anyone remember episode 200? I just read that the cast completely improvised it. Sounds like it could be a bit of a car crash. Or did they do OK? Would be sort of interested to see it just to see how they did.
They didn't improvise it. The case and the writers spent a weekend at David Jacobs' house and improvised their reactions to Laura Sumner's death. The writers took notes, then wrote scripts based upon what they'd seen. It was a collaborative effort, but in general, the actors' ideas were molded into dramatic narrative form, not used verbatim.
A one-hour drama utilizing one camera, needing a master, reaction and over-the-shoulder shots, lighting, etc., and that had to hew to time constraints, could not have produced a free-form improvised show.
Interestingly, the producers weren't happy with the result, although fans generally think of the two-part "Noises Everywhere" as Knots at its pinnacle. Personally, I think Knot's stab at "The Big Chill" was wonderful.
R88 Wow thanks for the quick and interesting reply! Here in the UK they showed Knots all the way through but couldn't remember any "experimental" episodes. As you say though, it was still a written episode, just collaborated in a different way.
There's a channel here that shows an episode every day at 6pm but only up to season 2 episode 10 so still a while away but will make an effore to try and see it when it comes on now that you've said it was well received.