The Six Million Dollar Man: The Pal-Mir Escort

episode number: season 2, episode 4 (1974)
viewing setting: home DVD, 1/24/11

episode synopsis: When the Prime Minister of a small country has a heart attack while negotiating peace amongst its surrounding neighbors, she is selected to receive the first bionic heart. Steve is assigned to protect her while she is transported to the secret hospital where the procedure will take place.

impressions: It's bodyguard time, and this withered old crone insists on having everything her way. She wants to stop and help some kids with a stuck car, which lets the assassins close the gap. She wants to stop and get some fruit, which not only lets the assassins set up an ambush, but also lets them hijack the helicopter escort. And as a result, her doctor friend gets shot and killed. And she's genuinely sad. But does she accept responsibility? Does she understand that she was wrong, she was stupid, and her mistake cost the guy his life? Not at all. People like this woman, and the wife in Taken, and the pacifists in the A-Team episode Semi-Friendly Persuasion...well, these are the people whose skeletons you see in cars or on the side of the road in zombie and apocalypse movies. They're stupid, and in a real crisis, they'd be killed. And this discussion sums up my opinion of this episode. On the bright side, Steve gets to explain to someone else what it means and how it feels to have bionic parts, and she wins his respect, which is all fine and good. It's just that her little trip to the hospital could so easily have been made safely and without loss of life IF ONLY SHE'D NOT BEEN SO HARD-HEADED.

notable guest star: The Prime Minister lady is played by Anne Revere, who in addition to having over thirty movie roles, was a direct descendant of Paul Revere.

significant bionic antics: Steve lifts a van out of the rut its tire is stuck in, uses his eye to see that the guys in the helicopter are hostile, leaps into combat, and uses his arm's power source to power the artificial heart when things are looking grim.

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