Knight Rider “Good Day at White Rock” (part 3 of 3)

The sheriff arrives, only to arrest Knight instead of the bikers [!]. So that makes twice in three episodes so far that Knight has been in the hoosegow. The sheriff’s operating assumption is that Knight is the one causing all the problems, and hence once Knight is locked up, peace will finally come to White Rock.

In his cell, Knight uses his Dick Tracy watch to call KITT, currently sitting in the impound lot. Although there is precedent for KITT busting Knight out of jail, Knight decides that he’ll get himself out this time.

Knight Rider "Good Day at White Rock" (part 3 of 3)

Meanwhile, we visit the bikers, camped (loosely speaking) in the trees outside of town. It appears they didn’t just randomly roll into White Rock, after all. Instead, they’ve come to meet and fight another gang of bikers that are due to pass through town the following day. DRG still has his sights set on Sherry, but the leader of the gang manages to talk him into fighting one war at a time. First, the other bikers. Then, the chick!

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Back at the jail, Knight manages to use a thread from his blanket and a spring from his cot to fish the keys to his cell door off the wall. Why do prison guards always hang the keys out in the open, right across from the cells? Of course, going by the previous episode, it’s sort of surprising that the door to Knight’s cell is locked at all.

While he’s MacGyvering himself out of the clink, KITT comes to life and gets himself out of the impound lot. He has to push a big station wagon through the fence to get out, and there’s a sight gag where two teenagers are making out in the station wagon, unaware that their parked car is moving forward, i.e., “Did it move for you, too?” Much too obvious, writers. Much, much too obvious.

But again, what the heck? Two horny teens break in to an impound lot just to find a car to make out in? Or were they in the wagon when it was impounded, and didn’t notice, and are still going at it? Wouldn’t that be some sort of make out record or something?

KITT, driven once again by the seat Muppet, arrives at the front of the jail just in time to meet Knight, who just walks right out the front door. White Rock must be a lot smaller than it seems, because the town can obviously only afford one lawman. And not a very good one, at that.

Knight and KITT head out of town to reconnoiter the bikers. Knight finds himself a leather vest and a hat from somewhere, so he can go undercover and get a bit closer to the gang.

Caption contributed by Albert

“And I won’t even have to change clothes for the mission where I infiltrate a gay bar!”

So what do the big, bad, scary bikers do in the woods?

No, not that, silly! It’s the Pope who does that in the woods.

The bikers, of course, tell knock-knock jokes.

Biker #1: Knock-knock!
Biker #2: Who’s there?
Biker #1: Simon Chanted.
Biker #2: Simon Chanted who?
Biker #1: [singing] Simon Chanted evening…

The gang roars with appreciation, wowed by this nimble marriage of kindergarten humor with musical theater. Suddenly, this gang doesn’t seem so threatening. More pathetic than before, certainly, but not very threatening.

After the “joke”, Knight overhears the bikers talking about their upcoming battle with the rival gang. They’re planning on making the fight the biggest biker war in California history, and whatever happens to White Rock is just too bad.

As Knight and KITT head back to town to warn everyone, the camera pans over to one of the bushes, and guess who else is spying on the bikers? Why, it’s Davey/Bobby! Alas, he didn’t have the smarts (or the height, frankly) to disguise himself as a show tune-loving biker, so he’s quickly apprehended by the gang. What horrible, unspeakable abominations will they inflict upon the poor lad? Might they even—gasp—make him sing “Over the Moon”?

In town, Knight and Sherry—for one final time and I really mean it—are going to the sheriff for help. Before they go in, Sherry gives Knight a kiss, “for luck.” I suppose that means that in a few episodes we’ll find out that Sherry is really Knight’s sister or something. After arguing with the sheriff for a while, and grabbing his gun belt before the sheriff can reach it, Knight and Sherry convince him that there is, indeed, a looming gang war.

In the morning, we rejoin the bikers in their woodland bivouac, passed out almost to a man. Seems like a poor way to prepare for a gang war, but then again it seems like I don’t know as much about bikers as I thought I did, at least in the universe this series takes place in. Also, Davey/Bobby is tied to a tree, apparently no worse for wear.

Knight and Sherry race up in KITT, and they proceed to do donuts right in the middle of the biker camp. Only then does Sherry notice that Davey/Bobby is their captive. I hope she’s not his legal guardian, because if she is, she stinks at that job. Ten-year-old out all night? No worries!

A couple more donuts and some knocked over bikes provide enough of a distraction, and Knight is able to hop out and rescue Davey/Bobby. Though he probably would have been harder to free if the bikers had actually, y’know, tied the rope in a knot, rather than just looping it around him and the tree. Just sayin’.

Knight Rider "Good Day at White Rock" (part 3 of 3)

Knight, et al., drive off, and after a moment or two, the bikers regroup and pursue. Which means it’s time for the only car chase in the episode!

Knight races back and forth over some dirt roads, peeling off bikers one by one. Some crash into KITT and fly into a puddle, some hit a berm and fly into a puddle, and some just flat out fly into a puddle. Eventually, Knight heads back into town, with the few remaining bikers trailing behind.

Caption contributed by Mark M.

Ouch. Scratch another Trans-Am.

But Lonny, he of once-bitchin’-but-now-totaled van fame, has a surprise for the bikers. Once KITT has passed, he pulls a chest-high rope taut across the street. The sheriff helps him secure the rope just in time, and the bikers blindly drive right into it. Bikers are soon a-flyin’ everywhere!

Caption contributed by Mark M.

Chariots of Farce!

I’d ask why the bikers in the back of the line, after seeing all their comrades up front hit the rope, still drive right into the fool thing, but this is behavior that is entirely consistent with what we’ve seen from them so far. Unless the rival gang is composed of string puppets, it’s probably for the best that these idiots didn’t have a chance to get their fight on.

So the bikers have been defeated, the sheriff has learned a lesson about actually enforcing the law, and Sherry has the hots for Knight. What’s left before this episode winds up?

Oh, yeah. The rival gang of bikers is still on the way. They drive into town, and I must say they do look a bit more menacing than the just-vanquished group, but that’s probably because we haven’t heard them talk yet. I’m sure if they had lines, they’d be telling poop jokes and quoting Madonna lyrics or something.

In any event, the second gang comes into town, only to be confronted by a barricade mortared with the bodies of the first gang. Hah! Just kidding! It’s not quite that dark. Instead, the barricade is just the twisted wrecks of the other gang’s Hondas. The sheriff, standing behind the barricade with his shotgun, provides the last straw that convinces the second gang to turn ‘round and get out of town.

Later on, Knight corners Devon in the same fancy restaurant from the beginning of the episode. He convinces Devon that he needs another vacation to recover from the vacation that he just had. However, the real reason he wants the vacation becomes apparent when Knight rushes out of the restaurant: Sherry is waiting for him, of course.

Knight puts KITT in “auto” mode, and Knight and Sherry begin to make out while the car drives off. Knight tells KITT to keep driving until one of them “runs out of gas”. If KITT has a soul, it died just a little bit right then.

Knight Rider "Good Day at White Rock" (part 3 of 3)

And that’s it. Not a lot of action in this episode, but then again, they seemed to stay within themselves. The story didn’t call for anything they couldn’t pay for. The supporting cast was pretty strong, and nice to look at (Sheriff, I’m talking to you. Not). And as for the “funny” bits, for all my groaning, I chuckled on more than a few occasions at this episode. You could definitely have watched something worse than this back in 1982. Or today, for that matter.

Mark M. Meysenburg

Mark teaches at Doane College, a liberal arts college in Crete, Nebraska. Most of his teaching involves computer science, but Mark also occasionally teaches mathematics and the history of science; he has also been known to offer three week courses on the worst movies ever made. Mark's bad movie obsession was kindled in the early 1980s by the Medved brothers, then fanned to full flame by late-night showings of Plan 9 from Outer Space. Who could have predicted the long term effects of satin-pajama-clad, mincing alien menace? Mark's other interests include homebrew beer and wine, and practicing and teaching martial arts.

Multi-Part Article: Knight Rider "Good Day at White Rock"
TV Show: Knight Rider

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