Sunday, September 23, 2007

Bionic Ever After

I watched the premier of the new "Bionic Woman" last night. (Amazon is currently offering it for free.) Let me just say right off the bat that David Eick is a bit of a freak. He's the producer of this new show and also of "Battlestar Galactica." Eick's specialty seems to be taking my favorite shows from when I was nine and making them really, really dark.

So the new "Bionic Woman" starts off in standard Eick form by introducing us to an earlier prototype of bionic woman, played by none other than Katee "Starbuck" Sackhoff. (Yeah, she's hot, bionic, and a Cylon. My inner nine-year-old just went through retroactive early puberty, if that's possible.) And she's a complete mess - part of a secret government (?) operation that went awry. As it turns out, this secret organization, headed by Miguel Ferrer (still a hero of mine from his work on "Twin Peaks"), tries to turn people into super-strong cyborgs and makes them engage in some sort of paramilitary activity. Unfortunately, these cyborgs soon realize that they're stronger than their captors, so they kill people and escape.

The secret team is hoping that their new subject, Jamie Sommers (played by Michelle Ryan), will be different. She's smart, decent, and emotionally stable, despite being a bartender and the legal guardian of her little sister, who has been ordered by a judge not to use a computer. (This is not the easygoing Ojai tennis instructor that Lindsay Wagner played in the 1970s.) But she's sucked into the world of bionics by her professor boyfriend after a car "accident."

There's a lot of cool scenes with Jamie discovering her new powers and developing a weird relationship with the earlier prototype, who is simultaneously her archenemy and the only other person in the world who knows what she's going through. I'll probably watch another episode, but at this point I'm not hooked. It's interesting, but not in the same way "Galactica" is. Mostly, I'm curious to see how they'll keep tweaking the 1970s version.

And then I can't wait to see if Eick will remake "Dukes of Hazzard," only with the Dukes as oxycontin dealers and Roscoe P. Coltraine as a compromised cop and Boss Hogg as some sort of anal-rape fetishist. And Edward James Olmos will play Uncle Jesse.

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