Nick Knight is a 13th-century vampire living in modern-day Toronto. In an effort to regain his mortality, Knight atones for 700 years of evil by fighting crime as a homicide detective for the Toronto police.
The complete first season of the much-maligned supernatural television series Forever Knight
makes its DVD debut in a five-disc set that should satiate its devoted fans and intrigue first-time viewers with its well-blended mix of horror and crime detection. Forever Knight
first aired in 1989 as a two-hour TV-movie titled Nick Knight
, starring Rick Springfield as a thirteen-century vampire who moonlighted as a police detective. Though the movie was not a hit for CBS, the network created a new two-part version of the pilot titled Forever Knight
featuring Welsh actor Geraint Wyn Davies as the undead sleuth. The series was launched in May of that year as part of a late-night syndicated package called Crimetime After Primetime
The first season outlined the series' essential storyline: Knight wanted to atone for his bloody past and regain his humanity, but was challenged by master vampire Lucien LaCroix (Nigel Bennett). Knight's partner in crime-solving was the smarmy Det. Schanke (John Kapelos), and scientist Natalie Lambert (Catherine Disher) aided Knight in his desire to become human and struggled with her attraction to him (which would endanger her in episode 16, "Only the Lonely"). Knight's adventures yielded a small but loyal following over its three-season run, which was constantly threatened with cancellation; a letter-writing campaign saved the program after CBS axed it in '93, but failed two years later, when Knight's adventures came to a permanent end.
Columbia-TriStar's DVD set compiles all 22 episodes of the first season (note: the series was presented in three different formats--a 40-minute version for American audiences, a 47-minute version for Canadian and Australian viewers, and a European version which contained nudity; the episodes compiled here are the Canadian versions save for the first episode, which has the American network running time). Hardcore fans may be disappointed by a lack of any extras aside from trailers for three vampire-themed Columbia features (including Tsui Hark's Vampire Hunters), but should be consoled by having the full debut season in one attractive package. --Paul Gaita