Saturday, August 10, 2013

Bionic Woman: Reimagining A 1970's TV Classic

Official Synopsis:
Bionic Woman is an American science fiction television drama that aired in 2007, which was created by David Eick, under NBC Universal Television Group, GEP Productions, and David Eick Productions. The series was a re-imagining of the original television series, The Bionic Woman, created by Kenneth Johnson. The storyline is based upon the novel Cyborg by Martin Caidin, and retains its forebear's premise while taking on a more contemporary setting.






Production:
David Eick also serves as executive producer alongside Laeta Kalogridis and Jason Smilovic. Production of the series was halted due to a strike by the Writers Guild of America causing only eight episodes to be aired. Following its failure to be included in the Fall 2008 schedule it was announced that the series was canceled as the result of low ratings.
The series revolved around bartender Jaime Sommers, who is saved from death after receiving experimental medical implants. While adjusting to her new bionic powers and raising a rebellious younger sister, Jaime agrees to work for the Berkut Group, a quasi-governmental private organization that performed her surgery.

Official Plot:
Bartender Jaime Sommers struggles to make ends meet in San Francisco, California while serving as a surrogate mom to her teenage sister. Nearly killed in a car accident, Jaime is saved by a cutting-edge operation – performed by her boyfriend, Will Anthros – that leaves her with advanced bionic prosthetics and implants. With extraordinary new strength, speed, and other artificially enhanced abilities, Jaime begins working for the Berkut Group, the organization responsible for her operation. In her new life Jaime must learn how to use her new abilities while working to understand the role that she has been thrust into.
Jaime's modifications include: bionic legs, a bionic right arm, a bionic right ear, a bionic eye like that of Steve Austin, and nanomachines called anthrocytes which are capable of healing her body at a highly accelerated rate.

Thoughts:

For all of the promotion and Special Effects that went into making the short lived series; Bionic Woman was very lackluster. Don't get me wrong, it is a guilty pleasure of mine but there is no wonder why the series was only 8 episodes in length.  Even TV's original BIONIC WOMAN, LINDSAY WAGNER, insists the 2007 remake was a flop because it lacked heart. The 61-year-old actress, who played superheroine Jaime Sommers from 1976 to 1978, claims the revamp, starring British actress Michelle Ryan, was destined to fail because the 21st-century Sommers was too robotic.
Wagner, who is now a leading meditation expert, tells TV Guide magazine, "They (writers) didn't recreate what I think people loved about The Bionic Woman.
"We worked very hard on our show to present human elements and conflicted villains within the constraints of our Cold War formula.
Battlestar Galactica mastermind David Eick clearly has re framed Bionic Woman as a darker psychological drama than the camptastic ’70s original. But in embracing the melodrama, he has sucked some of the fun out of the formula. And if the show insists on taking itself so seriously, it should  have dialed it down the overdone score. No need to hit us over the head with pulsing, pounding, can-you-feel-the-tension-cause-this-is-really-tense music. We get it! This is Drama

Overall Still, there is something almost irresistible about watching a woman come into her power ! Bionic Woman is available at Amazon on DVD and Instant Video