Knots Landing (1979–1993)

Critical Condition 

Sid insists on undergoing an operation that could cure him of his paralysis but also possibly kill him.


Nicholas Sgarro


David Jacobs (created by), Diana Gould


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Episode credited cast:
James Houghton ... Kenny Ward
Kim Lankford ... Ginger Ward
Michele Lee ... Karen Fairgate
Constance McCashin ... Laura Avery
Donna Mills ... Abby Cunningham
Don Murray ... Sid Fairgate
John Pleshette ... Richard Avery
Ted Shackelford ... Gary Ewing
Joan Van Ark ... Valene Ewing
Claudia Lonow ... Diana Fairgate
Pat Petersen Pat Petersen ... Michael Fairgate
Steve Shaw Steve Shaw ... Eric Fairgate
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Cynthia Avila Cynthia Avila ... Nurse Rojas
Bonnie Bartlett ... Dr. Ruth West
Peggy Frees Peggy Frees ... ICU Nurse


This is a continuation of the cliffhanger episode from Season Two, where Knots Landing Motor Company owner Sid Fairgate is involved in a car accident after his criminally-tampered-with brakes fail. In Season Three's opening episode, we see Sid struggling to cope in the hospital after being told he will remain a quadriplegic for the rest of his life. While continuing to undergo therapy, Sid learns of an experimental procedure that could possibly allow him to walk again. There is a down side...because the surgery is extremely delicate and risky, he could also die during the surgery. Against Karen's wishes, Sid agrees to have the operation. This episode picks up from a beside confrontation with Karen, where Sid tells his wife that he will sign the consent form with his teeth himself if she chooses not to do so. Reluctantly, Karen signs the form. The outcome proves fatal for Sid, as he goes into cardiac arrest on the operating table during the surgery. Attempts to defibrillate his heart ... Written by

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Romance







Release Date:

19 November 1981 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


This episode marks the final appearance of Don Murray as Sid Fairgate. See more »


Sid was having surgery on his back at the time he died, yet he is shown face up on the operating table after he has died. See more »


[Sid and Karen are at his bedside discussing the surgery, which Karen is adamantly against and thus will not sign the release form]
Karen Fairgate: Doctor, what happens I don't sign?
Sid Fairgate: [angrily] Then I'll take the pen in my teeth and sign it myself!
See more »


Referenced in Knots Landing: Discovery (1988) See more »

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