The Six Million Dollar Man: Dark Side of the Moon (part 1)

episode number: season 5, episode 8 (1977)
viewing setting: home DVD, 7/25/12

episode synopsis: An expedition to the moon goes bad because some of the astronauts have their own agenda.

impressions: This was the moon episode, part one of a double-header. It was entertaining, with the moon being shifted in its orbit and causing crazy weather on Earth. Steve had issues with his bionics in the cold that's found on the dark side of the moon. However, there were some serious logical and scientific issues. The main thing is that space flight is too easy here - it's almost like OSI can launch men into space for moon trips on a whim, with little planning or notice and thus a lot of rushing and ignored safety procedures. And you don't send a capsule into space with a crew of one - not only is it not economical, not only could the other people come in handy up there, but one person can't fly a mission alone. Another thing, the bad guy apparently not only fooled everyone at NASA but also two of his fellow astronauts; you can't just leave the asteroid you're supposed to be on and go to the moon and not have anyone notice. At one point, Oscar picks up his phone and in seconds is talking to people on the moon. The bad guys were stupid, not realizing when their plans wouldn't work out and making further mistakes that compounded their earlier ones. Last but not least this episode featured laser pistols. I guess what happened is it was late 1977, someone said "hey, we need a space episode!" and they jazzed it up because Star Wars was a big hit at the time.

notable guest stars: Jack Colvin (best known as the pesky reporter from the Incredible Hulk TV series) is the wayward scientist/astronaut here.

significant bionic antics: Steve crushes a moon rock, aces some bionic workout tests with weights, punches through the floor of a small plane to grab the rudder cable and operate it manually, breaks out of an armored testing chamber, throws a frisbee on the moon (why, I don't know) and deflects a falling boulder.

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