Here are ten strange ways Transformers: Dark of the Moon and Knight Rider are connected. While the two properties have always had kind of tenuous links the recent film Dark of the Moon has cemented the connection forever.

Here are ten strange connections involving Star Trek, Mustangs and Buzz Aldrin.

10. Talking and Self-Driving Cars
Just to get these two obvious ones out of the way: both feature talking cars that drive themselves. Ok. I've said it, so we can move on.

9. Obvious General Motors Product Placement

In 1980, General Motors gave the show Knight Rider the new 1982 Trans-Am which was modified to the incredibly cool K.I.T.T. Not only was the show a huge success, but everyone loved the Pontiac Trans-Am. It sold like hot cakes.

For the first Transformers GM went all out. "We try to find properties where the cars are the stars, and literally our cars are the stars of this movie." Said Dino Bernacchi, associate director at GM. All the main characters were GM cars: Chevrolet Camero, Hummer H2, GMC Topkick pick-up truck and a Pontiac Solstice convertible.

Senior vice-president LeeAnne Stables said, "I think this is a once in motion picture history-type opportunity for an automotive company where you have a film that actually incorporates multiple cars that are actually characters in the film."

The Chevy Camero hadn't even been released when the film opened, but thanks to Bumblebee sales of the Camero skyrocketed. Especially the yellow ones, like Bumblebee.

For Dark of the Moon they featured Chevrolet Impalas as the "Wreckers" a team of NASCAR bots. Not only do they feature the Impalas as heavily weaponed fighting machines, but the cars themselves are walking billboards for Target, Gilette and Lowes.

8. Scotty Died on the Same Day As the Moon Landing.

James Doohan, a co-star of Star Trek's Leonard Nimoy, died on the anniversary of the Apollo 11 lunar landing July 20, 2005. In Dark of the Moon, the moon landing was a cover for the exploration of the Cybertron Ark crash site.

7. Both Nimoy and Knight Rider Were Referenced by The Big Bang Theory.

The television show The Big Bang Theory is steeped in geek culture, so it's no surprise that they make a lot of pop culture references.

In the episode The Bath Item Gift Hypothesis Penny gives Sheldon a gift of a napkin that Leonard Nimoy used. Basically, giving him Nimoy's DNA and allowing Sheldon to grow his own "Nimoy."

In the episode The Cruciferous Vegetable Amplification Sheldon claims that with his brain and the enhanced capabilities of the car they were like "Knight Rider." After beginning a speech on the amazing capabilities of the human sphincter Leonard says, "I was wrong. This is exactly like Knight Rider."

6. The Same Guy Who Invented Star Trek's "Nomad" Fought Knight Rider

In the short-lived Knight Rider sequel Team Knight Rider there was a character named Dr. Jackson Roykirk.

In the episode "Apocalypse Maybe," he invented the earthquake machine that was defeated by Team Knight Rider. He was also working on an robot called "Nomad." That name would be familiar to Star Trek fans. In the episode "The Changeling," the Star Trek crew face off against a planet-destroying space probe known as "Nomad." The creator of the probe was named Dr. Jackson Roykirk.

Another connection between "Team Knight Rider" and Star Trek is they had a character nicknamed "Trek."

5. Optimus Prime Was K.A.R.R.

On the original television series the evil version of K.I.T.T. was known as K.A.R.R. (Knight-Automated-Roving-Robot) and he was voiced by Transformers own Peter Cullen. Cullen is also the voice of Autobot leader Optimus Prime.

He reprised his role as the voice of K.A.R.R. in the short-lived television Knight Rider 2008 TV series for two episodes.

While the pilot had huge ratings 2008, the movie was watched by 12.7 million viewers, the show itself was a ratings avalanche and wasn't picked up for a second season.

4. Buzz Aldrin Sat In K.I.T.T.
In the film there is a cameo of famous astronaut Buzz Aldrin who was part of the first moon landing. He was the second man to walk on the moon after Neil Armstrong.

In Dark of the Moon US astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin use the 21 minutes of radio/video silence while on the far side of the moon to investigate a crashed alien ship near the lander.

In 2008, Buzz Aldrin sat in his K.I.T.T. replica car while at a trade show. Kind of like a cameo.
3. Scotty Was On Knight Rider

Another weird James Doohan connection is he had a cameo on the Knight Rider TV movie Knight Rider 2000. In the movie, K.I.T.T stuns an innocent bystander who turns out to be James Doohan. The man mumbles several well-known "Scotty" lines from the show.

2. Transformers Barricade is a Chevrolet Ford Mustang

The evil Decepticon Barricade is a police cruiser that "enslaves." He's also a Chevrolet Ford Mustang. In the new Knight Rider 2008 series they replaced the Pontiac Firebird with a Chevy Ford Shelby Mustang GT500KR. The Pontiac Trans-Am was no longer in production and there were very few "muscle cars" available.

While Barricade was a popular character in the original Transformers film, he was missing from the sequel Revenge of the Fallen. He returned as one of the Decepticons that captures the Autobots and tries to execute them.

The Trans-Am was also replaced by a Mustang in the made-for-TV movie Knight Rider 2010.

1. Evil Trucks
In the latest film the evil Megatron has a transformation to a tanker truck. In Knight Rider, K.I.T.T.'s mortal enemy was an indestructible semi named "Goliath."

What do you think? Is it a coincidence? Are there any more connections between Transformers and Knight Rider?
[Main image credit: Jalopnik]


Michael Offutt said...

Interesting. I don't even know how you came up with this blog post but I salute you in the originality of it. I'm not a big fan of Transformers. I actually think the movies are terrible. However I did like Knight Rider and James Doohan was a great performer. I saw him live once and he was funny as hell.

Anonymous said...

Is this a joke? Chevy Mustang? Mustang is a ford product.


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