Sunday, July 29, 2007

Bionic Woman Television Review

Created by one of the co-creators of the critically acclaimed series "Battlestar Galactica", David Eick, "Bionic Woman" stars Michelle Ryan as Jamie Sommers. Jamie is a bartender who takes care of her deaf sister after the supposed death of their mother. After an attempted vehicular homicide against her boyfriend of five months, Jamie is injured almost beyond repair. Fortunately, her boyfriend works for a top secret organization that specializes in bionic replacement parts. So her boyfriend, the one who was supposed to be killed in the accident, walks out with nary a scratch and takes Jamie to be outfitted with two new legs, a new arm, and a bionic eye and ears. The rest of the episode has her struggling with the new power she has obtained that culminates in a final battle with the original bionic woman, Sarah Corvis (Katee Sackhoff, star of "Battlestar Galactica").

Unfortunately, despite an interesting premise, the show does not live up to expectations. The pilot is all over the place. Things seem to happen out of the blue and there really is no coherent structure overall. After realizing she's been outfitted with new bionic parts to replace the old, irreparable parts, Jamie freaks out. She gets angry at everyone around her and asks "What did you do to me?" Oh, I don't know Jamie. Maybe they just saved your life? Maybe THAT'S what they did. I think that having no legs and one arm would be highly negative in comparison to having a couple of badass bionic limbs. But maybe that's just me.

Michelle Ryan as Jamie Sommers does not seem to exude the presence that a role of this magnitude requires. Although it may be a result of poor writing, her attitude changes like the wind and this is not presented in a believable manner. Starting off completely angry and upset with her changes, by the end of the episode she is telling those who want her to join the secret organization that she will help on her terms and that she will kill anyone who tries to control her. Now, it may just be me, but it seems to follow that a person who may have never been in a fight in her life would not be so open to killing people with such conviction. This constant change in emotion is jarring and does not ring of much realism.

Despite the unfinished effects, they certainly need some work. The scenes of Jamie running super fast look dumber than the young Clark running along the train scene in the original Superman. When the POV moves to her bionic eye for the first time, it becomes somewhat difficult to understand what exactly it is that she is seeing, so having that cleared up a bit would be nice.

That is not to say that all is bad with the show. Some of the fight scenes are pretty decent as is Katee Sackhoff's original Bionic Woman character. And there is also an interesting premise lying within the show. Whether or not it could be fully exploited remains to be seen. The problem is at this point I do not ultimately care that much whether or not it gets there. When it airs, I may watch an episode or two to see where it goes, but given that there are so many other good shows I am currently watching, I do not see this overtaking my staple programming anytime soon.


No comments: