Series 7 Appreciation Week

Post Reply
User avatar
Pooka
Fright Knight
Fright Knight
Posts: 1029
Joined: Sun Nov 17, 2002 10:55 pm
Location: London
Contact:

Series 7 Appreciation Week

Post by Pooka » Sun Feb 22, 2015 11:52 am

I won't be in Knightmare Chat this evening as I have a prior engagement. But there's no reason we can't run this anyway, as it's cross-platform. And if nobody turns up to Chat without my divine influence to guide them there, we can always extend it another week.

It may take two weeks to discuss anyway, because Series 7 is my favourite series. I won't go so far as to say it's the best... but it's still my favourite, for a number of reasons. It's the one I remember the most clearly from the original CiTV run, and it's got a lot of factors I like. Some of them are:

[*] The Opposition. Lord Fear's biting sarcasm is brilliant here - the pre-credits scene at the beginning of Episode 1 is, in my opinion, him at his ascerbic best. Maybe he's not as scary as he is in his first two series, but he's funny and biting and he genunely works well with Lissard (who I prefer over Skarkill - better lines, makeup, acting...). Hands and Raptor get some screentime here and Hands is hilarious, especially when singing the ten goblins song!
[*] The Brollachan. I think this is a bit of a wasted opportunity as he was never really going to kill anyone, as he had no memories left - but it was a good bit of technology, he was quite scary to look at, and it draws well on Cornish mythology - where the Brollachan did appear on rocks and stones, etc., and was just eyes and a mouth. Grimaldine was good too - although perhaps only a one-series character. Lord Fear's ribbing of the Brollachan was brilliant.
[*] Some, but not all, of the PTB. I like Majida (she took a while to grow on me, but I like her feitsy attitude better than the more subservient Pickle), Marta, Romahna (I'd like her in Smash Bros.!) and Brother Strange. I adore Rothberry too - another funny, gentle character to add to MK's roster.
[*] Floor puzzles - deadly ones. This one really amps up the tricks and traps that could (and did) kill. PYCR - quite a simple concept, really - was brilliant. Two dead on the Trial By Spikes - nasty one, that one - a few near-misses in the sliding floor chamber, and Barry very nearly getting chopped in the CoB! Fantastic stuff, and making anyone who got past all of those a very worthy dungeoneer indeed.
[*] The final three quests. Ben's quest ended spectacularly - maybe a little unfairly in some ways, but still a good quest. Two excellent winning quests followed, each different in their own way but fully deserved in every aspect, followed by a fantastic ending. Bulstrode actually making it to Knightmare Castle - and the fact that they could hear him coming - was chilling and an excellent ending, and the bit with the Brollachan moaning in LF's ear was inspired!

Some bits I don't like are:
[*] The constant relying on SIGHT potions and seeing-eye spells. I don't actually mind the new helmet - yes, I am in a minority here but I think it's okay - but it was clearly changed to add a visor in it and every quest had a seeing thingy at least once. Barry's "Blimey!" was good, though...
[*] Fidjit. What an irritating git this character was - and at the expense of Motley too! Infuriating.
[*] Pookas - there are only a few!

Series 7 was stylistically different from a lot of other series as it had some new CGI locations. I liked the misty Rift of Angar where Smirky landed, the Sewers and Black Tower of Goth, and more Wolfenden in Level 1. Frankly, I don't think it's as threatening an environment as Series 6... but then it does have goblins and trolls providing a bit of danger to the series, and is as different and original as it needs to be.

As I said - I won't be in Chat tonight. But let's get a discussion going!
Pooka - teacher, writer, comedian, musician, geek, and full-time Knightmarian.

pjmlfc05
Knight
Knight
Posts: 596
Joined: Thu Aug 23, 2012 7:58 pm
Location: Hampshire

Re: Series 7 Appreciation Week

Post by pjmlfc05 » Sun Feb 22, 2015 2:16 pm

My 2nd fav series overall and quite a few new characters. Some I like, some I didn't. Anyways.......

Highligts:

Lissard - great banter with Lord Fear and loved his scene with Hordriss when he impersonated Marta!
Play your cards right - one of the best puzzles in Knightmare and scary looking too
Barry - quite simply the best dungeoneer in Knightmare
Julie's team - a great team and loved the scene with Julie and Sylvester Hands when Julie gave Sylvester the ale!
Rothberry - another great guise for Mark Knight. No one could have played him better.
Spike chamber - another great puzzle room. Shame it only got one series
The last scenes of the troll and Barry - the best ending of all series
Lowlights

Brollachan - much preferred the wall monsters from s1 and s2
Grimaldine - just didn't like him and found him awkward
Majida - much preferred Pickle
Romahna - found her very spiky
Lissard - Although I did like him, he could have done with being more like skarkill and trying to capture dungeoneers.
No motley! - although I thought Fidjit was ok, his scene when he was in the stocks with Ben was funny!
Simon - my least favourite dungeoneer. Rude to other characters and his manners were terrible.

Overall a great series and one I remember with fondness.
The only way is onward, there is no turning back.

User avatar
wombstar
Level 3 Dungeoneer
Level 3 Dungeoneer
Posts: 492
Joined: Sun May 12, 2013 9:25 pm

Re: Series 7 Appreciation Week

Post by wombstar » Sun Feb 22, 2015 8:54 pm

I quite liked Majida, she made a refreshing change from Pickal who had a good run. The lack of Motley was a positive in my book, one of my least favourite characters in the whole show, and I liked they re introduced a wall monster.

The rules for Play your cards right seem to change with each quest, I still don't get it.

Sight spells were pointless, and how does having a visor help when you're only going so see a blue room?? I still don't get it.
It's always the cracked ones that let the light in

Canadanne
Fright Knight
Fright Knight
Posts: 1877
Joined: Tue Oct 12, 2010 5:53 pm
Location: Poole, Dorset
Contact:

Re: Series 7 Appreciation Week

Post by Canadanne » Mon Feb 23, 2015 12:30 am

Series 7 was a grower for me, and while all Knightmare is good Knightmare, I do feel it was past its peak at this point. It's not as enjoyable as Series 6 - the whole thing has a gloomy sort of atmosphere for some reason, I'm not keen on several characters, and there are some poor and annoying teams. Luckily it gets much better toward the end of the series with Julie and Barry's two great teams, so it ends on a high note and many of the earlier problems can be forgiven. I thought those episodes were the perfect choice for the CITV Old Skool Weekend.

I really miss Pickle, and while Majida isn't a terrible character (and I think Jackie plays the part well), she just isn't as loveable. She doesn't interact with the teams like he did, and in Series 7 she's incredibly annoying with all her bitching and whining, which also brings out the worst in Treguard. I wish she could have made a more positive contribution. (I don't really like Treguard's new outfit and haircut, either.)

One of the best things about S7 is the progression through the levels, which gets the balance exactly right for those of us who appreciate varied locations. I like the towns and other outdoor scenes in Level 1, where they can meet people such as traders (and they still have the dark dwarf tunnels to add a bit of spookiness). There's a growing sense of danger and claustrophobia as they descend into the Rift of Angar and the indoor dungeons of Level 2, and then we have a clearly defined and highly atmospheric Level 3 - I always found it so tense watching them sneak into Lord Fear's own palace via the sewers!

I also love the concise yet informative recaps at the start of each episode; much better than Pickle slooowwwly leafing through the book, or the S8 intros which tell you nothing except the team members' names! The new hourglass animation is pretty cool, but the slamming doors are a bit silly.

Glad they did away with the quest choice room. Here we have a return to the early series where they just got assigned a quest object, which saves messing around, though perhaps it was nicer when the decision was their own.

Lord Fear is funny as hell this series, I absolutely adore the spyglass scenes. Love his dealings with the sulky Brollachan and Sly Hands (the bit where they exchange evil laughs, LOL!), and although I'm not a big fan of Greystagg, it was worth bringing her back just to see Fear winding her up. He does get a deliciously sinister moment as well, with his "two-nil" voiceover when Nicola dies mysteriously in a darkened room.

Speaking of Sly Hands, this is probably his best series. Julie getting him drunk is completely hilarious (as is the line "Oh, well if it ain't got any alcohol, I'm not interested"). So much better than the sleazy Sly they introduced in Series 5.

I loved Skarkill as Lord F's confidant and Lissard took a while to grow on me (he seemed a bit overly chummy from the outset), but now that I'm used to the character I think he's excellent. As others have said, it's just a shame he almost never confronted the dungeoneers. Raptor was unfortunately a very poor replacement for Skarkill in the goblin master role - he's neither scary nor entertaining, and it's hard to even make out what he's saying half the time.

Marta is one of the best female characters in the show's history, I love how she was played. I did like Romahna at first (and I still love her outfit, and am glad she replaced Elita as Smirky's guardian), but she fumbled too many lines and got captured WAY too many times for a supposedly strong character.

Rothberry is OK, though he's still my least favourite of MK's characters. Brother Strange is... well, a bit of a strange one, but he has some quite funny moments.

Fidjit is probably my least favourite of all Knightmare characters, he's just so pointless, annoying and disgusting, with no redeeming features at all. And we lost a whole year of Motley so they could bring him in! Then there is Grimaldine, whom I liked better after reading Gareth's fanfic about him, but the actor really was dreadful at improvising. As in, he just *didn't*. So his scenes tend to be a bit painful to watch (and vaguely creepy, in the case of his apparent flirting with Julie).

The Brollachan sort of does and doesn't work. I love its appearance, voice and overall personality... I just don't like how useless it is. Placing it in the old wall monster role was badly thought out, as there is no point in asking trivia questions if it makes no difference whether or not they know the answers. (Don't lie to it! Just make something up! WTF?) The whole 'must kill Smirkenorff' storyline was rather unconvincing too - it never even found him, let alone seemed capable of harming him! - and it was equally hard to understand why Grimaldine kept going round in circles without ever succeeding in tracking it down.

Smirky's flights were rather too repetitive this year - every single quest made an identical journey, with that cliff followed by the same CGI sequence, which became tedious once you'd seen it a few times. Even his payment (when required) was the same every time. A bit more variety wouldn't have gone amiss.

I agree that the floor puzzles are very strong in Series 7. The Causeways had become boring so it's all change here, with the sliding floor chamber, the truly nailbiting Trial By Spikes (some wonderfully nasty deaths on that one!), and the fiendish Play Your Cards Right which is so well designed. Love it when that goblin falls to its death while following Barry!

The new helmet.... meh. I think it's a real shame it had to look so different from the old one, as the horns were so iconic. And I don't approve of the sight spells & potions at all. The dungeoneer's blindness is a central element of the programme (both in terms of its mythology and its gameplay), so trying to change it was a bad idea, and the visor screen was so tiny that it didn't help them anyway. During my first rewatch, it wasn't even made clear what the sight spells were supposed to be doing - I didn't understand that the dungeoneer could now see the room, until Barry actually said so! The whole thing was poorly executed and unnecessary.

Good series finale, with a team that are more than capable of playing along. The troll bursting through the floor is so much more dramatic than the dragon storyline in S6, IMO, and I love the scene at the end with everyone pinned under the troll while the Brollachan annoys them. ;D

User avatar
Pooka
Fright Knight
Fright Knight
Posts: 1029
Joined: Sun Nov 17, 2002 10:55 pm
Location: London
Contact:

Re: Series 7 Appreciation Week

Post by Pooka » Mon Feb 23, 2015 1:23 pm

wombstar wrote:The rules for Play your cards right seem to change with each quest, I still don't get it.
Excuse me for getting on my high horse here, but I've always found PYCR incredibly easy to understand; the teams don't have the benefit of hindsight and when put in the situation, it's easy to panic and press the wrong card (so I don't think it's fair to call it "easy").

As far as watching and re-watching the quests leads me to believe, you just need to touch the card that's the most similar to the one from which you have just come - this either means following suit or choosing the same number, depending on which one is presented (the other card, a dud card leading to the death of the dungeoneer, is never as similar to the correct one, IMHO - if you follow the sequence you'll see what I mean!).

The only slight bit of consternation with this is the final choice where you have one card and a Joker. Julie got through by simply pressing a card with clubs on it, which is the suit she'd been following, whereas Barry just pressed the Joker (on his own assumption) due to it being a wild card and therefore would automatically count as the right one. So I don't think it matters at all which one you pick because they'll both get you through the door!
Last edited by Pooka on Sun Jul 15, 2018 6:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Pooka - teacher, writer, comedian, musician, geek, and full-time Knightmarian.

User avatar
wombstar
Level 3 Dungeoneer
Level 3 Dungeoneer
Posts: 492
Joined: Sun May 12, 2013 9:25 pm

Re: Series 7 Appreciation Week

Post by wombstar » Mon Feb 23, 2015 8:02 pm

I never said it was easy, I just said I never really understood the rules.
It's always the cracked ones that let the light in

Post Reply