Glen A. Larson, who produced some of the biggest and highly remembered TV programs of the 1970s and 1980s, including Knight Rider, Magnum P.I., and the original version of Battlestar Galactica among them, died on Friday at the UCLA Medical Center. He was 77. Larson’s son James had reported that his father had suffered from esophageal cancer.
Larson in many senses was like a Norman Lear of his genre, and like Lear at his peak, had several shows running at once on the air. However, unlike Lear, Larson’s programs weren’t critically lauded for the most part, and Emmy awards were non-existent. But what the programs did supply was a kind of wide-eyed fantasy skein which ran as a common thread through most of them. A large and loyal fanbase, mainly young teenage boys, watched and devoured these programs week after week and snatching up all forms of these shows via marketing, whether it be a BSG‘s Cylon Space Craft toy or a replica of a K.I.T.T. car from Knight Rider. It was this rabid cult fanbase that kept these shows flourishing and remaining in the subconscious.
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