YMMV / Baywatch

  • And You Thought It Would Fail: The executives, producers and story editors at NBC all thought a show about lifeguards was a dumb idea with a limited premise. NBC cancelled the show after its first season but the David Hasselhoff and the show's creators were able to continue Baywatch through syndication and with a budget that came from excessive Product Placement, all at the cost of proper scripts and not being able to do retakes. Although Baywatch would go on to become one of the most successful shows in the world, NBC can't exactly be called wrong for their lack of faith in the show since its' success clearly didn't come from good stories or interesting characters.
    • Although in 1994 (during the peak of the show's syndicated popularity), NBC took out an ad in the Hollywood Reporter admitting that they made a mistake when they canceled the show 4 years earlier.
  • Awesome Music: That theme song(the piano solo is pretty awesome).
  • Best Known for the Fanservice:
    • Without a doubt, the thing Baywatch is most-remembered for is slow-motion shots of attractive lifeguards (both male and female) running across the beach on their way to rescue a civilian in need.
    • Although Baywatch was once the most popular syndicated TV show in the world, its popularity declined rapidly once home broadband Internet became affordable to the average person. Baywatch served as a porn substitute for people who didn't have access to actual porn.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: Newmie, for some, given that there was an official Newmie fanclub back in the day, and even moreso now thanks to Allison Pregler and her Baywatching series.
  • Franchise Original Sin: Baywatch Nights is rightly ridiculed for adding explicitly supernatural elements to a franchise about lifeguards, but people often ignore that the original show had plenty of ridiculous supernatural elements too. There are several episodes where characters have unexplained precognitive visions, one that ends with an alien abduction, and several involving ghosts.
  • Germans Love David Hasselhoff: Why else do you think the series got a complete DVD release (and "Baywatch Nights" too) in Germany and not the U.S.?
  • Harsher in Hindsight: "The Life You Save" features the Baywatch team facing a 25% budget cut, which would of course mean some of the lifeguards would be reduced to working part-time hours. This was in 1994. Watching the episode again today, in the midst of one of the worst financial crises ever, it's eerie how it's even MORE relevant.
  • He Really Can Act: David Hasslehoff actually gave a pretty powerful performance in the two-part episode "Shattered," but was unfortunately let down by the ludicrous script and the obscene Product Placement.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: "A Little Help" has CJ training for a dancing competition, which doesn't end too well for her. (See Wardrobe Malfunction on the main page.) 17 years later, Pamela Anderson competed in the Fall 2012 season of Dancing with the Stars...and was the first one eliminated.
  • Ho Yay: Inevitable on a show where most of the men are often hanging around together while shirtless, but the standouts are probably Mitch and Garner. Fans have also joked that despite being in a Love Triangle with Summer, Matt and Jimmy also had way more chemistry with each other.
  • Hype Backlash: While the show was wildly popular across the globe during the '90s, it recently made the #21 spot in TV Guide's Top 50 Worst TV Shows of All Time.
  • It's Not Supposed to Win Oscars: Pamela Anderson famously stated (paraphrasing) that the show wasn't high art, and wasn't trying to be, so you should just enjoy it for what it is.
    Pamela: Everyone loved Baywatch. If the sound was off.
  • Just Here for Godzilla: Plots? Who cares about the plots or subplots? Just show us the slow-motion shots of the lifeguards running with their boards. And the pecs and bouncing jugs.
  • Memetic Mutation: Oh, those red lifeguard swimsuits and trunks. And that orange thing they always carry.
  • Retroactive Recognition:
    • Carrie-Anne Moss is in an episode as a woman with a Split Personality.
    • Mila Kunis appears in two episodes as two different little girls.
    • David Spade appeared as a heavy of all things.
    • Bryan Cranston as a yacht driver with a drinking problem.
    • Mariska Hargitay as a spoiled rich girl.
    • Hobie hung out with Charisma Carpenter in one episode.
    • William Fichtner appeared in a Season 1 episode as the drug dealer ex-boyfriend of Eddie's Girl of the Week.
    • Jason Momoa as rookie lifeguard Jason Ioane during the final two seasons as Baywatch Hawaii.
    • Nicole Eggert (Summer Quinn) was previously Jamie Powell on Charles in Charge.
    • Kelly Packard (April Griminski) was previously Tiffani Smith on California Dreams.
    • Brandon Call (Hobie Buchanan #1) later went on to play J.T. Lambert on Step by Step.
    • Billy Warlock (Eddie Kramer) later went on to play A.J. Quartermaine on General Hospital.
    • Greg Grunberg briefly shows up in "The Red Knights" as nightclub host.
    • In addition to their work on Baywatch, creators and executive producers Michael Berk, Douglas Schwartz, and Gregory J. Bonann also served as creators and executive producers of Thunder in Paradise. On their own, Berk and Schwartz served as co-creators and co-executive producers of The Wizard, and Schwartz, on his own, also served as co-developer and co-executive producer of Sheena.
    • Gus Trikonis directed 22 episodes. Trikonis previously played Indio in West Side Story.
    • Parker Stevenson directed nine episodes and played Craig Pomeroy. Stevenson previously played Frank Hardy in The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries.
    • Anson Williams directed three episodes. Williams previously played "Potsie" Webber on Happy Days.
    • Gillian Horvath wrote three episodes and served as executive story editor. Horvath served as developer and executive producer of Primeval: New World.
    • Ernie Wallengren wrote two episodes and served as executive producer. Wallengren also served as co-developer and co-executive producer of Flipper.
    • Kate Boutilier also wrote two episodes. Boutilier served as co-developer and co-producer of All Grown Up!.
    • Elroy Schwartz wrote an episode. Schwartz previously served as co-creator and producer of Dusty's Trail.
    • Grant Rosenberg also wrote an episode. Rosenberg served as co-creator and co-executive producer of Time Trax.
    • Rick Husky also wrote an episode. Husky served as creator and supervising producer of T.J. Hooker.
    • Michael Sloan also wrote an episode. Sloan served as creator and executive producer of Master Ninja and co-creator and executive producer of The Equalizer.
  • Seinfeld Is Unfunny: Its sexuality actually looks rather quaint and conservative these days.
  • Spiritual Successor: USA Network's Pacific Blue. Except the show starred beach cops instead of lifeguards.
  • Stock Footage Failure: The Season 4 episode "Lover's Cove" reuses footage of a car plunging into the ocean from the Season 2 episode "If Looks Could Kill." The problem? The car crash victim in Season 2 was a murderer who had a wrapped up corpse in her backseat, which is still visible when the clip is reused in Season 4.
  • Suspiciously Similar Song: When Garner rides his horse in "Sky Rider", the music that accompanies it is suspiciously similar to "William Tell Overture".
  • Unintentional Period Piece: In spite of its cheesiness (or perhaps because of it) Baywatch was an iconic 1990s television show. Pamela Anderson in her red one-piece swimsuit is one of the most recognized sex symbols of that decade. The show was also widely parodied, from Saturday Night Live to Son of the Beach.
  • Viewer Gender Confusion: Joey from "Silent Night, Baywatch Night". Doesn't help that Joey is a gender neutral name.
  • What an Idiot: How Mitch didn't catch onto Gwen and Mattie being the same person (until it was too late) in "Mirror, Mirror" is beyond belief.
  • Wheelchair Woobie: Jason in "Shattered".

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/YMMV/Baywatch