The constantly changing look of "Supertrain"
was not limited to what appeared on screen.
Above is the TV Guide ad for the third episode, notice the variation in look of the series name.
Comparing the other TV
Guide NBC ads, you find the style of "Supertrain" changes frequently.
The Queen and The Improbable Knight
Wednesday February 21, 1979 8pm (Eastern)
Saturday June 9, 1979 10pm (Eastern)
Mary Louise Weller
Michael V. Gazzo
and Kenneth Mars
Produced by Rod Amateau
Supervising Producer Robert
Written by Brad Radnitz
Directed by Charles
Departing New York's Grand Central
Terminal heading westbound, "The Queen And The Improbable Knight" episode features the only time we see Supertrain arriving
at Denver, Colorado. In fact, the episode finishes without Supertrain finishing its journey west to Los Angeles as the
episode ends after the departure from Colorado's Mile High City.
Guest Stars Paul Sand and Mary
Louise Weller enjoy the majority of the screen time in this third installment of the series. Given the newness,
one might expect more time devoted to further fleshing out and introducing the audience to Supertrain's regular cast members.
This episode features a minor amount of screen time for Patrick Collins and Harrison Page and
just barely includes Edward Andrews. Beyond the brief time Andrews, Collins
and Page are provided, there is just a quick over the shoulder glimpse of bartender Michael
DeLano and out the Supertrain gym to lug Sand around is Bill Nukols.
Neither DeLano nor Nukols are given any dialog in this episode.
The series is most often compared with ABC's "The
Love Boat," but occasionally some have mentioned 20th Century-Fox's 1976 feature film "Silver Streak"
in the same breath with "Supertrain." This third episode's guest Paul Sand seems to be doing a pretty
good knock-off of Gene Wilder's typical nervous, unconfident character very similar to what Wilder
offers in "Silver Streak" and other movies.
An NBC memo from early 1979
notes production problems and recasting would delay the finish of "The Queen and The Improbable Knight" until February 2,
1979, putting it two days behind schedule. It was noted as possibly being run as the first episode, but I'm not certain
if that reference meant first hour-long "regular" show or if it would have launched the series on February 7, 1979.
A January 17, 1979 listing of performers includes reference to this episode as being the second in the series, though it airs
The Paul Sands role was originally
to be played by Desi Arnaz, Jr. Notes show Desi Arnaz, Jr. was to be paid $15,000 for seven days and receive top billing
in main titles. Production notes show Arnaz cancelled and the role was given to Paul Sands.
Mary Louise Weller is listed as receiving $4,000 for seven days work on this episode.