The Six Million Dollar Man: Dark Side of the Moon (part 2)

episode number: season 5, episode 9 (1977)
viewing setting: home DVD, 7/25/12

episode synopsis: On the moon, Steve must stop the scientists before their mining leads to disasters on Earth.

impressions: This was part two of the moon episode, in which the evil/stupid scientist's mining efforts are pushing the moon out of orbit and causing catastrophic weather on Earth. The character of Dr. Leith was one of the most unlikeable I've ever seen, and perhaps one of the most selfishly stupid as well. He doesn't care about the death and destruction he's causing on Earth while mining his "dilanthium" on the moon...he blames Steve for having to rush and thus causing more issues, and his logic is fundamentally flawed. This guy actually believes that if they find the ore, everything will just be okay once they get back to Earth. The other conspirator actually gets excited about "what it'll do for our careers." Let me tell you something, Eric: it doesn't matter if you find enough ore to solve the energy crisis, because you're responsible for thousands of deaths and billions of dollars in damage. When you get back to Earth, you're going into a cell forever - if you're lucky. Also, three different times in this episode, deals are made on the basis of "do you give me your word?" Look, when the fate of the entire planet is at stake, it's okay to break your word if it will stop the bad guys. Other issues: the spaceship is far larger than anything reasonable for the time period; it had multiple floors and would not have fit on any rocket that existed at the time. There was more use of laser pistols, a technology that didn't exist in 1977 (and still doesn't as I write this in 2012) and never appeared in any other episode. Advice for Steve: 1) if you escape, don't flee to your ship...instead, try and stop the bad guys while you still have the element of surprise and before they do any more harm, and 2) When they are about to disable your bionics, that's the time to make a last-ditch attempt to fight, not after you're helpless, and 3) When the fate of the world is at stake, don't tie the bad guys up or lock them in a room...shoot them in the head, and 4) When you've been told that you have 80 seconds until the nuclear explosion, there's no time for sentimental talking, and it's best if you hurry just a little. I don't mean to dislike this episode - it was entertaining and tried to do a lot - but sometimes, you have to write a plot that holds up to adult scrutiny, not that of the average 5-year-old.

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 kicks open a titanium cage and then later repairs it, stops a falling can, digs through rock, throws a wire, breaks a hatch lock, carves rock, and moves a heavy bomb.

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