SCORE: 2 out of 4 Tennis Balls
Sept. 24, 1977
Mood Ring: Red (unsettled)
Tonight I finally saw the Bionic Woman show! It was about the Fembots again, but I didn’t like them as much as last time. I begged my brothers to change the channel. Someday when I'm a grownup and understand the meaning of life, maybe Fembots will make more sense to me.
THE BIONIC WOMAN 3x03-4
HANG ON, JAIME!
This Vegas Fembot cheese convention will be over soon, we promise!
Oct. 6, 2011
(Edited Nov. 1, 2015 to include wardrobe + additional images)
Dear Bionic Blondes,
Mood Ring: Lost on the crap tables
It’s time to pack the serious camping gear, because they’rrrrrrre baaaaack!
Thanks to syndication, people all over the world can probably tell you where they were the first time they saw a Fembot on The Bionic Woman. Even Steve Austin can tell you, because they graced his show once in a crossover episode. Little kids had nightmares. Adults giggled.
Fembots were the best cheese ever made in America.
What Happens in Vegas: Unfortunately, this 2 part Fembot sequel really should have stayed in Vegas. When suddenly the whole Washington OSI bionic family packs to go to Las Vegas, it’s like sending the Brady Bunch to Hawaii. Folks, it’s Nielsen sweeps week!!! And this “working vacation” outing felt like a superficial ratings stunt from the git go. Oscar driving a convertible down the Vegas strip, show girls, casinos... and jackpot... Fembots! But to get through this one, I decided you really have to pour yourself a second vodka martini and just go with it.
So... let’s all go to Vegas! Oscar wants to make an energy weapon sales call on some guy who doesn’t want to see him. Jaime goes along because she inexplicably wants to see some live shows of women performing in glitzy costumes (Liberace was sold out), Rudy had to go dress like a chef and help assemble a rocket for NASA—in addition to his busy schedule as the world’s foremost authority on bionic sciences and a brilliant medical doctor—because this guy knows how to do everything. (I ask you, who is the true superhero of this series?) And secretary Callahan is invited as well, because her Fembot model from last year is being secretly rebooted from OSI basement storage. Let the fun begin!
Cat In The Hat: Jaime arrives dressed for a night on the town in a black skirt and a pretty, and seriously low-cut blouse, which I didn’t even notice until later because I was so blinded by her hat. (She also wore a tan hat in the opening scene in DC) They're all beautiful hats, really. So why am I not a fan of Jaime wearing them? I liked it when Stephanie Zimbalist/Laura Holt wore hats in Remington Steel. It somehow worked for her character. But for Jaime, these fashion hats just always seemed out of place to me. For reasons I cannot explain, I find them too distracting in a scene. Anyway, compared to the hat she put on next, I granted her 5 points for this one.
Tower of Terror: After watching some dancers with Oscar, Jaime sleuths backstage when she bionically hears the familiar Fembot FM station frequency, and decides the stagehands might not toss out a seriously strong bionic woman if she joined the chorus line. So she stole a Vegas showgirl costume with a huge headpiece and feathers that scraped the ozone. (I think we just found the inspiration for Marge Simpson's hairdo.) Perfect and indiscreet. Nobody will notice Jaime now!
I suppose the Bionic Woman loosening her dignity to prance around in this really sparkly costume was so the network could have something to tease in the promos. And just in case you missed Part 1, they conveniently repeated her wearing it again in her part 2 nightmare. I don’t think it was any accident she got to have a scene where she “quit” this showgirl gig with the stage manager. Jaime must have anticipated the resignation letter I had already prepared on her behalf.
Raaaaaaaiddddd! I don’t know what’s in those aerosol cans the Fembots use to spray-sleep their victims, but I sure would like to stock up on these at Costco for occasional use on angry people who buzz around and annoy me. Use only as directed.
Oh Yeah, The Plot: So the evil Dr. Franklin apparently died in jail, and his son has secretly taken over his Fembot sorority empire and is plotting revenge on 3 of the 4 people responsible for capturing his daddy: Jaime, Oscar and Rudy. Oddly, Steve, who now appears on a competing network, has been totally forgiven for his Fembot crossover role. Franklin, Jr. also wants to steal a deadly laser energy weapon and take over the world or something.
Available in a Rainbow of Flavors: This time we see the Fembots dressed in matching polyester pantsuits in an array of vibrant colors. They kinda reminded me of Apple’s original generation of iMacs. It suddenly dawned on me that when these women were lined up in a scene, I could hit pause and use them as a color calibration for my TV monitor. Let's see, I think I liked the blueberry Fembot the best.
Oh Yeah, The B Plot: There was also a man named Rod with a weak immune system who had to live in a ‘bubble’ because germs would kill him. This B story was actually quite good I thought, with some very nicely-played scenes with Jaime, who of course wanted to help him, and I think it would have made a great episode just by itself. It’s a shame they had to waste it here at Fembot World.
Dressed for Action: When the time came for Jaime to really battle the ‘bots, she had kicked off her heels and hats and was more appropriately dressed in a casual blue denim blouse with white raised collar, bell bottom blue jeans and tennis shoes. However, the rectangular, white pocket detail on her shirt kept reminding me of one of those “Hello... my name is” stickers you have to wear at stupid conferences, and then embarrassingly realize like 4 hours later after you’ve already been to the mall, grocery store and your kid’s ballet recital, you are STILL sticker-announcing you attended the “2nd Annual Fembot Cheese Convention.” Oops.
Run Girl, Run! Jaime usually just hits an easy-going jog in these slow motion action sequences to reach her signature 60 mph... I guess so her hair doesn’t get messed up. But when she was high-tailing it out of Franklin’s complex in Part 2 trying to outrun the space lasers, this was the first time in this series I have ever seen Jaime truly haul ass. You could see the 100-meter, Olympic sprinter pain on her face, and it’s too bad Rudy didn’t have his Timex out to clock her, because on this day in history, I‘m pretty sure she hit an all-time bionic world record high of nearly 61 mph.
Jaime also bionically slid down like 40 floors on an elevator cable in seconds flat. However, I was a bit disappointed they didn’t show us a closeup of her metal cable rope-burned hands afterwards. Ouch!
The helicopter escape scene in Part 1 was also pretty awesome. These action scenes had me on the edge of my sofa and caused me to nearly spill my martini a few times. Gosh Jaime, could you please be more careful?
Spare Parts: Don't you just love how there are always 55-gallon drums conveniently stacked in stairwells whenever Fembots are chasing you? I should start collecting these just in case.
Also, after Jaime got her head slammed into a post by the Callahan ‘bot, and then proceeded to stagger out of the building with mystery stomach pains instead, Rudy made her well again in the hospital. And I would be remiss if I didn’t note the really sweet scene where he bent down and kissed Jaime’s forehead prior to her Fembot flashback nightmares. I know I get on Rudy’s case a lot for being so cranky, so I just wanted to go on record as saying that when he cuts back on caffeine, Rudy does have his tender moments, too.
Oscar: "Jaime, you can't fight Fembots."
Jaime: "Who said anything about fighting them? I'm just gonna run like crazy."
Wise girl. I'm running away, too. Rather than watch this Vegas adventure again, I think I would probably have more fun losing my life savings in a slot machine. But I have to admit these classic American cheese villains will still always bring out the “Taller Children” in all of us. So below is a link to my little YouTube video homage to the pop-legendary Fembots:
What is it about Sandra Bullock a.k.a Kate Mason aspiring to be Jaime Sommers?
First it was a plot re-do of Bionic Beauty for the box office smash hit Miss Congeniality in 2000, followed by going undercover as a Vegas show girl, complete with giant feathery, Marge Simpson headpiece in 2005's Miss Congeniality 2.
I bet Sandy has a German Shepherd dog named Max, too.
Video: Bionic Woman: Fembot Flashback (see above)
Five outfits plus a hospital gown in this 2-parter. I loved this tan safari-style pantsuit in the opening scenes, worn with a checkered blouse and white hat. In Vegas, Jaimed traded for a black hat and skirt, with a long, silk low-cut black top belted at the waist. I loved her casual denim blouse with white raised collar, and also her navy blue dress with embroidery stitching at the end, which remined me of her nautical tunic in Mirror Image. I'm also including the bright Fembot pantsuits here, too. Tré classic for this era.
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