Bionic Woman

BIONIC WOMAN/ABC/NBC/1976-78 (Damaged Ear, Arm, Legs)

Jaime Sommers (Lindsay Wagner), tennis pro who was physically reconstructed after being nearly killed in a skydiving accident. Her shattered body was fitted with a bionic right arm, legs and super-hearing in her right ear.

bionic-woman-lindsay-wagner

When Jaime Sommers was injured in a sky diving accident, her fiancé Steve Austin (Lee Majors) intervened with OSI director, Oscar Goldman (Richard Anderson) to have her equipped her with artificial legs, a right arm and right electronic ear. (The Bionic Woman’s catalog number was 87312/JSB).

Steve had previously received similar bionic replacement parts after his experimental NASA aircraft (M3F5) crashed at a Southwestern desert airfield (Edwards Air Force Base).

Unfortunately, Jaime died after her body rejected her bionic parts. Luckily, she was brought back to life via cryogenic suspension methods and her new implants kicked in successfully. However, the resulting trauma from the operation left Jaime with no memory of having known her fiancé, Steve. Jaime, eventually was recruited by the OSI as an undercover operative. In her spare time, she taught school in Ojai, California.

bionic-woman-schematicOthers to benefit from bionic technology included

Andy Sheffield, The Bionic Boy (Vincent Van Patten), a paralyzed teenager who had both legs replaced; Maximillian “Max” the Bionic Dog, a German shepherd injured in a laboratory fire equipped with a bionic jaw and four bionic legs at a cost of $1 million (Max became Jaime’s pet); Barney Miller (Monte Markham), a bionically rebuilt race driver, who was given nuclear-powered parts in a 1974 episode. He was the only living man stronger than Steve Austin.

Continuing the bionic saga, the NBC network aired the TV-movie THE RETURN OF THE SIX MILLION DOLLAR MAN AND THE BIONIC WOMAN (5/27/87) with Lee Majors and Lindsay Wagner who reprised their roles to save America from a group of mercenaries. The sequel introduced Steve’s son, Michael Austin (Tom Schanley) from an earlier marriage who sustained major injuries when his Air Force jet malfunctioned/crashed during his solo flight. Again, at the insistence of Steve, the OSI fitted Michael with a microchip computer in his chest, a new bionic right arm, 10 artificial ribs, reinforced spine, a laser equipped right eye and two new bionic legs. Due to the advances in technology, Michael was even faster than Jamie and Steve. By films end, Jamie regains her memory and her love for Steve.

The TV-movie THE BIONIC SHOWDOWN (4/29/89) again teamed Steve and Jaime with a new bionic woman named Kate Mason (Sandra Bullock) to battle a renegade cyborg.

In the TV-Movie BIONIC EVER AFTER? (11/29/1994 – a.k.a. BIONIC BREAKDOWN) Jaime Sommers, now a Family Counselor in Washington, DC, experiences a failure of her bionic limbs caused by a mysterious robot virus which puts a delay in her wedding plans to Steve (who also gets infected). The story has a happy ending and, finally, Dr. Jamie Sommers and Colonel Steve Austin marry on September 4, 1994.

bionic-woman-wedding

Bionic Newlyweds

The SIX MILLION DOLLAR MAN and THE BIONIC WOMAN were inspired by the novel Cyborg (1972) written by Martin Caiden.

Note: In 2007, NBC aired a short lived remake of THE BIONIC WOMAN (8 episodes) that featured Jamie Sommers (Michelle Ryan) as a green-eyed, brunette bartender from San Francisco whose near-fatal car accident injuries were repaired by the Berkut Group.

bionic-woman-reboot-nbc

Happy to be alive and enabled with enhanced bionic features, Jaimie decides to work for the organization that gave her: a bionic ear, bionic legs a bionic right arm, a bionic eye and a gaggle of nano-machines (called anthrocytes) which were capable of accelerating her normal rate of healing.

Note: The syndicated cartoon THE BIONIC SIX/SYN/1987 featured six members of the Bennett family who possessed bionic powers.

See also: The Six Million Dollar Man

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