[Excerpt from TV Guide interview with David Hasselhoff]

DAVID HASSELHOFF: It just really started to feel like we were beginning to repeat ourselves. The last couple of series we were really just repeating a formula. With any artform there comes a point where you get so bored you just want to start to doing it back-to-front, upside down, anything to avoid repeating what's gone before. I wanted to play around with the format, really tear it to pieces and shake it up. For example, if Mitch saves someone from drowning, and that person then goes out and releases a virus that kills a million people. Imagine the moral implications of that. Or if one episode we start doing everything backwards, just out of sheer ennui, we start drowning people instead of rescuing them, we're picking people up off the beach and throwing them into the water to drown. Upside down, back-to-front. Or I wanted it to be free-form, improvised, really blow with it. Like Mitch reaches a point where he doesn't respond to a certain stimulus the same way any more. He sees a person drowning, the response that society has taught him to that stimulus is to rescue them. But what if, instead of obeying that Pavlovian bell, Mitch sees a person drowning and gets in his car and drives up the highway thirty or forty miles and knocks on a door and exposes himself to whoever answers? Existentialism. And this would all be improvised, this would be me on a whim being followed by a steadicam, and the old woman or whoever that I exposed myself to would be a real person. I was really looking to liberate drama from the tyranny of the script. So that was where my head was at by the final series, and I knew that Newmy [Mike Newman] was feeling the same way, he had ideas about where we should be heading. He had an idea for an episode where we would all be Eskimoes, his character and my character and the girls and everyone on the beach would all be played by Inuit actors, with no explanation, because after all why not? It's the merest accident that I am I and you are you, and why should my consciousness, the thing I call me, be enveloped in and have the perceptions of this body and not another? And who knows if in some parallel dimension there is not a world where Baywatch is a hit show for Inuit TV? We were excited by this. Or how about if we had an episode from the point of view of the sea? Or the sand? Or an old man in Pasadena who never goes near the beach? We follow him through his day, who he meets and who he talks to, and he goes to the grocers and he buys a bunch of vegetables and they're wrapped up in the previous day's newspaper, and at the end of the episode we close up on the paper and there's a little item that says, 'Pleasure boat sinks, lifeguards Mitch Buchanan and Michael Newman save 20 people from drowning.' And it means nothing to the old man, nothing. It's something that happened twenty miles away, on another planet. It's just something his groceries are wrapped up in. You see? The infinite indifference of the human heart. And that's it, that's the episode, his perspective. Or just mess around with the form a bit, do an episode where every other scene is chopped out and the audience have to work out what they missed. Splice in drill noises in crucial scenes, church-bells, clips from Daktari, anything, just really...We would really have moved the art of television ahead by 20 years. And we ran these ideas past the other producers and the network, and they locked us in a barn and set fire to it, which I took as a no.

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