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Friday, August 29, 2008

Childhood and Conflict

I just finished watching a movie on the NBC website, regarding an old television series I used to love as a child. The series is Knight Rider, and the movie is the testing film that NBC used to determine the viability of a new series. They decided it was time to bring KITT back.

The child in me is overjoyed at the prospect of a new series surrounding the super-car that I grew up wishing I had. I mean, here we had KITT, an indestructable car with a personality, the ability to affect the world around it, a scanner that could function as the perfect lookout, and the communicator that would allow Michael Knight to remain in contact. And I had idolized Michael as a child, a man who would defend "the helpless, the powerless, in a world of criminals who operate above the law." I would eat it up.

Michael and KITT were involved with an organization known as the Foundation for Law and Government. These were seen by the show as the "good guys," the enemies of this group were usually very immoral people, willing to kill in order to ___________ (fill in the blank). Michael would walk around, sometimes perform "questionable acts" such as breaking and entering, kidnapping, and even assault, but it was always in the interests of defending people. Of course, he was never apprehended by the police during those times, it was always the murderous "bad guys," who knew that Michael was a threat to their plans. Much action and collateral damage followed.

Now, here I am, unwilling to believe in law at all, seeing the police, representatives, military, and all other "public servants" as a gargantuan gang whose sole purpose is to keep their paychecks coming, and finding new ways to enrich themselves, all the time enjoying their ill-gotten and deceptively-maintained power. The ones that do have attacks of conscience either quit or keep their concerns under their hat.

I am conflicted as a result of this.

I am an anarchist. I do not follow the stereotype; most anarchists do not believe in chaos, and in fact, find the use of government to be a means to encourage chaos to certain peoples' benefits. I do follow two simple rules: do everything to help myself, and do nothing to harm anyone else. The second rule is popular, while the first tends, among those that support the concept of government, to be reviled as a multitude of sins. Those same people believe in protecting me from me, when in fact, it's my responsibility.

So, now, a childhood favorite is returning, and I am both excited at the series' return, and more than a little bit apprehensive regarding the premise behind it. The foundation is still a quasi-government organization with the full backing of the federal police force, and KITT and the new Michael are under their employ.

Now, I don't own a television, and for good reason. Little is on television that has any value, and much of that tends to be biased and designed specifically to alter my opinion toward the producer's design. So, I can't help but wonder if its return was explicitly timed in order to return public opinion to the existing regime's side in the face of increased disillusionment of government in general; after all, they're the "good guys," right?

I don't know, but I know that more shows like this will come up. Maybe Airwolf is next?

...or perhaps the new Miami Vice? There's one for the cop-glorification zealots; a show glorifying property crime in the name of mob rule.

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