In this sequel to the classic show, James Wilder plays Nick Lewis, the illegitimate son of Buz Murdock, who was played by George Maharis in the original series. He never knew his now deceased father but inherited a few old record albums, some photos and a perfectly preserved 1961 red and white Corvette convertible. He picks up Arthur Clark, a loud-mouthed hitchhiker (Dan Cortese) and their journey into escapism begins. On June 3, 1993, Cortese and Wilder served as emcees for "Route 66 Day" in Santa Monica, California, organized to kick off the series and also celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Corvette. They presented Mayor Judy Abdo with a bronze plaque on behalf of NBC and Columbia Pictures Television saluting the city for its participation in "Route 66 Day" and the city's historic position near the end of the famous highway. Harley Peyton, executive producer and writer of the new series, said the idea for the show simply came from his desire to do a road show. He said he knew that such a show would be a rip-off of the early 60s series, so he just concluded he might as well do a new Route 66. But I personally think he should have used an original title like "The Highway" or whatever. I think he was probably capitalizing on the name of the original series to give it a shot in the arm. Hey, at least he didn't use the original theme song. The music for the new show was by the very capable Warren Zevon. I was a big fan of the original Route 66, and to be completely fair, instead of scoffing at the idea of a sequel, I welcomed it. Most Generation-Xers had probably never seen or heard of the original series and it could have been a great modern day adventure of a couple of guys travelling the highways and byways, meeting new people and experiencing life. But with just four episodes, it just didn't get the chance to completely develop the characters or stories. Part of what made the original series such a hit was the scenery. All four episodes of the remake were filmed in beautiful California, but not enough scenery was shown.
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