Closing out the Bionic Woman file

Longtime readers of this blog will remember my enthusiastic disillusionment over NBC’s new remake of Bionic Woman.

I just learned that the show — for which I have splashed out an appalling $15.92 via Amazon Unbox, making me a paying customer entitled to no end of feedback and/or howling into the cybervoid — has, incredibly, been cancelled:

…The action-packed drama series has now been scrapped after just eight episodes, with producers blaming a massive drop in ratings for the decision.

The pilot episode raked in a massive 13.9 million viewers, but by the eighth installment, the figures had dropped to just 5.9 million.

An insider tells British newspaper the Daily Star… “The show has been criticized. People complained about the poor storylines. But the writers have hardly any time to work with the characters. They were just getting used to them.”

Now, you understand, in this case that’s a lot like saying the drunk driver was just getting used to the road.

So I might as well close out my file of questions to the producers of Bionic Womanbefore people start saying, “Why is he so obsessed with a show that we don’t even remember?”

And here they are, questions 14-21:


  • You’re responsible for security for a US visit of the president of some unnamed but clearly very disturbed African country. You know that the assassin determined to kill said African president is using a rifle capable of firing depleted uranium shells a distance of two and a half miles. You pick a hotel suite with all glass walls — why?



  • There’s an absolutely critical secret you have to keep from your new bionic woman. So who do you choose to send to rescue the one guy who knows it and is likely to spill the beans? You guessed it…



  • You are captured in a warehouse by about 40 heavily armed men and conveniently taken to a room where the head bad guy is keeping the captive you were sent to rescue. Most of the 40 heavily armed men leave; a few remain. Moments later, you go bionic and noisily beat the stuffing out of the remaining men and the head bad guy. Do you then look around to see if any of the other 40 heavily armed men are coming back — perhaps because they are on patrol, or maybe they heard all the head-butting and bone-crunching? No, you stand around and talk a lot, paying no attention to your surroundings. Exactly how many parts of your training did they skip?



  • When Jamie joins the super-secret agency, her genius handlers give her a cover story to use with her suspicious, whiny, sex-addled younger sister. That cover story: timeshare salesperson. Which is of absolutely no use in explaining why one might have to take off on a mission any hour of the day or night. What, some critical Tahoe rental is falling through? Suggested more plausible cover careers: plumber, exterminator, party clown.



  • You leave your suspicious, whiny, sex-addled sister at home alone “watched by a 24×7 surveillance team” while you go running off on a mission. How exactly is that supposed to work? Are they just going to sit back and watch when she inevitably gets into some kind of sex-related trouble? Or are they going to charge in, guns blazing? Are you trying to keep this whole spy thing a secret or not?



  • “We have to recover the flash drive!” Clue to all future Hollywood writers: flash drives can be copied in about 90 seconds. Once it’s out of your view for 90 seconds, getting it back does you practically no good, since any bad guy with an IQ higher than his shoe size would have copied it, and then probably copied the copy. Chasing it around for days and days makes no sense at all. Where do these shows get their technical consultants — and are they from planet Earth?



  • Against my advice, you have hired the creepy gay-bashing dude fromGrey’s Anatomy. Now you give him a role where he’s required to hit a woman? Are you serious?



  • By the time Bionic Woman hit its quasi-stride, it had become a clear cross between Alias and Felicity. Now, I’m the first person to say that JJ Abrams is a genuine television auteur genius. But at what point does homage cross over into theft? And at what point, had the show not been cancelled, would he have filed suit?


Thanks, NBC! Good luck with your upcoming remake of Manimal!