This was an entertaining superhero show that ended all too soon.
It was something you could look forward to on late night TV in
syndication. It was based on the Malibu Comics superhero, which
later became a Marvel Comics property. There was always something
cool to see in the characters, the sets, the props...the producers
didn't try to bite off more than they could chew with special effects
or scripts. It was just a really neat series. "Nightman",
like any show, has its strengths and weaknesses.
The stories were pretty
easy to follow. You don't have to see this series from the
beginning to understand what's going on in any given episode.
They weren't filled with a lot of technical jargin and every episode is
pretty much a show within itself. There were some recurring
characters, but for the most part you can watch any episode in its two
season run and it can be like a first episode.
2. The cast for both seasons was great.
3. The stunts were always pretty well-filmed.
4. Special effects, on the whole, were well done. The glowing red
eye that shoots lasers has to be the neatest ongoing special effect in
the show. The bullets flying off Nightman's armor is impressive,
too. There were also many big explosions peppered throughout the
series. The most intricate special effects came where alien
lifeforms were concerned; spaceships, laser weapons, etc. All are
impressive, even by mainstream, big-budget movie standards. The
flying scenes are a little crude, but not overly bad. It's always
been very difficult for people to create realistic "flying man" special
I'm a fan of this show, and I hope I
don't upset anyone who worked on "Nightman" or any of the other
"Nightman" fans out there, but here are a few things that I think
worked against the series.
1. I'm repeating
from the Seasons 1 & 2 pages, but I cannot emphasize enough how
used too much nighttime, otherwise dark, or inside filming.
Superhero shows, as an unspoken rule, are supposed to be filmed as big
as all outdoors. If they would've opened it up more, it could've
been a more visually impressive show. As it is, "Nightman"
sometimes gives you the feeling that you're watching a daytime soap
opera: all indoors.
2. Season 1 was
pretty good with how they worked musical numbers in
the show. It would only be for a short while, and just to give
you the idea that Johnny Domino was a jazz saxophonist. Season 2,
however, tries to force jazz down our throats and in almost every
episode of season two, there is an overly long musical number. It
takes away from the plot and doesn't really serve any importance.
TOO MUCH JAZZ!
character of Nightman himself is not as interesting as other
superheroes. Without his suit, he's just an ordinary guy with the
ability to read other people's evil thoughts. That's it.
Not too impressive of powers. Of course, not all superheroes have
super-powers, but at least they have interesting occupations.
Johnny Domino is a small-time jazz musician who generally plays in just
one club. Not too exciting. If he were a cop, a reporter, a
doctor, a lawyer, a businessman, a teacher...just about anything
else...he could've had more appeal to audiences. Small-time jazz
musicians are pretty much like boring, everyday people. They
don't get into exciting adventures like people of more exciting
occupations do. In both seasons, Nightman pretty much follows the
cops around and solves the cases they cannot.
Domino is a superhero alter-ego without any quirks!
He's very mellow and peace-loving. Not a real take charge kind of
guy. Clark Kent (Superman), Bruce Wayne (Batman), Peter Parker
(Spider-Man)...all are characters who are on a personal crusade out of
costume. Essentially, this is what makes a superhero work.
Johnny Domino just doesn't have any clear direction or ambitions.
5. I mentioned
this in the
season 2 page...I'll mention it again: the Kieren Keyes
episodes are really, really bad! I can see what the producers
trying to do. Every superhero has his archnemesis. Superman
has Lex Luthor; Batman...The Joker; Captain America...The Red
Skull; X-Men...Magneto. Here it was, already the second
season of "Nightman" and he didn't have a steady bad guy. Some
things are better left undone. For one thing, it was more
interesting to see different bad guys every week. But even if
they HAD to have a main bad guy, they could've done better than
Kieren Keyes. This character is truly, deeply annoying with no
redeeming qualities whatsoever. He's a computer genius who
somehow is able to suck people into a strange dimension through
computer monitors. Sheahh! Right! One or two episodes
of this character would've been forgivable, but they just kept pushing
and pushing him on
and off from the first to last episode of
season 2. I think it's because of the great many Kieren Keyes
episodes that there was no Season 3. such a shame.
Needless to say, I don't recommend these episodes to anyone interested
in the "Nightman" TV show.