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Return of the Robot Maker

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“Return of the Robot Maker”

S2 E15

Production 41207
Original Airdate: January 26, 1975
S2e15-faceofarobot
Oscar's double
Produced by
Lionel E. Siegel and Joe L. Cramer
Teleplay by
Mark Frost
Story by
Del Reisman and Mark Frost
Directed by
Phil Bondelli
Guest Cast
Guest Star(s)
Henry Jones as Chester Dolenz
Co-starring
Ben Hammer as General Stacey
With
Troy Melton as Barney Barnes
Judd Laurance as Aide
Iris Edwards as Amy

Sarah Simmons as Oscar's Secretary
Jean Lee Brooks as Denise

Broadcast Order
Season 2
← Previous Next →
"The Last Kamikaze" "Taneha"
Related episodes
Day of the Robot

Run, Steve, Run

Summary

Dr. Chester Dolenz has gone back to the drawing board after his tests in Run, Steve, Run to create the ultimate in robots and fashions it in Oscar Goldman's image.

Dolenz kidnaps Oscar at his OSI office. He then orders Oscar's double to persuade Steve to penetrate a series of booby traps and gun nests at Fort McAllister's secret Brahmin Project, where a powerful new energy source is being developed. Ostensibly to test the security system, Steve is told the defenses will be non-lethal for the "exercise."

Instead, Steve braves real machine guns and mines while the robot uses the diversion to steal the Brahmin plans. Steve survives the ambush, tracks Oscar's mechanical duplicate back to Dolenz's hideout, and defeats the robot in an epic showdown. Dolenz is arrested, and would not return, although robots would continue to menace the OSI for years to come.

Deconstructed

Quotes

Barney Barnes: Here it is: la pièce de résistance. A pinnacle of my achievements. (pulls out a piece of cloth, straightens it)
Steve Austin: A bulletproof tablecloth?
Barney Barnes: No, no, no, no, a bulletproof vest! Look, forget the material just look: thin as a waver, light as a feather. This won't restrict your movements like a regular bulletproof vest. But it'll stop an eigh millimeter shell and give you ten cents change.


Robot: (picks up phone) Sally, go to the top secret vault and bring out the Brahmin file, will you?


Dr. Chester Dolenz: Let me introduce myself. I'm Doctor Chester Dolenz. I believe you are familiar with my work. Steve Austin has seen it before. I make robots!


Dr. Chester Dolenz: I don't want you to think of me as your enemy, Mr. Goldman. May I call you Oscar?
Oscar Goldman: It won't work, Dolenz. Steve Austin and I know each other too well. You can't keep this up for long.
Dr. Chester Dolenz: I've made mistakes in the past. I know, Steve Austin said my first robot squeaked. But this time I've foreseen every possibility. This new robot is a supreme mechanism. Every human detail has been painstakingly reproduced. This robot eats and drinks. I've installed an incinerator to burn up all of the fuels and foods ingested into the body. It thinks! It can even simulate breathing.


Steve Austin: You know Oscar, you tell that joke about three times a week.
Robot: It's the only one I know.
Steve Austin: Yeah, but if you learned another one, then you'd have two.


Steve Austin: Oscar, how did you do that?
Robot: Hm?
Steve Austin: Well, that coffee, it's scolding hot.
Robot: Well, I have the perfect, eh, stomach for working in Washington, Steve, I can eat anything, I can drink anything, I just burn it up. It's cast iron.


Steve Austin: (to Oscar's impersonator) You know, you talk about that computer like it was your brother or something. It's just a bunch of wires, dumb wires.


Robot: Colonel Austin was a traitor. He'll be remembered as a traitor.


Dr. Chester Dolenz: (Dolenz' robot is fighting Steve Austin) Kill him, my boy!


Dr. Chester Dolenz: Steve Austin, I find this dificult to say, but you've certainly earned my respect today. My hat's off to you.
Steve Austin: Well, as far as your work is concerned, Dolenz, I'll have to say the same.
Dr. Chester Dolenz: I must say that makes me feel a good deal better. (to police officers) I'm ready.
Steve Austin: (as the police leads Dolenz away) And Dolenz? This one didn't even squeak.


Oscar Goldman: By the way, just out of curiosity, how did you know which one of us was me?
Steve Austin: Very simple, Oscar. Robots don't sweat when they're nervous.


Trivia

Characters
  • Dr. Dolenz's first name changes to Chester in this episode, contradicting the fact that he was named Jeffrey in Run, Steve, Run.
  • Dolenz uses the alias Arnold Seaton.
  • Oscar Goldman's secretary in this episode is named Sally.
  • Oscar Goldman's personal identification code is revealed to be LR3-05-07-19.
  • Steve and Oscar's relationship appears to have reached a new level, as the two are supposed to go on a double date together.
  • A new character named Barney appears. An OSI field agent, he has aspirations to invent gadgets, leading to a sequence not unlike James Bond's Q in which he shows Steve a bulletproof glove (strangely, designed for the bionic hand, not the real one), a bomb-filled briefcase (a reference to Bond's famous trick briefcase from From Russia with love), a new style of bulletproof vest and, later, a pen radio similar to that used in The Man from UNCLE. Although Austin turns his nose up at these items initially, it could be argued that after some of the mishaps in "The Cross-Country Kidnap", some of them aren't completely redundant, even for a bionic man.
  • The pen walkie-talkie is similar to the radio Steve used in the episode Nuclear Alert. That radio resembled a tire pressure gauge.
  • Usually we see Steve "exercising" his bionics, but this is the first time we actually see him focusing on exercising his non-bionic left arm.
  • In an amusing reference to "Run, Steve, Run", it appears Dolenz actually took Austin's off-the-cuff remark about his robots squeaking seriously.
  • Despite Steve's ID card showing a Washington, DC address, he drives a car with Virginia license plates.
  • Steve Austin has a new automobile in this episode. He is driving a Mercedes 450SL. In the Seven Million Dollar Man, Steve's car was a Corvette.
Sound Effects
Story
  • Steve Austin will face off against another robot duplicate of Oscar Goldman in the second episode of the three part story "Kill Oscar".
Miscellaneous
  • This episode is one of the only ones in the series not to have a pre-credits teaser.

Gaffes

Credibility
  • Richard Anderson catches himself making a mistake in reciting one of his lines. In the scene where Goldman is on the phone with the General before Dolenz comes in, he almost says the Brahmin project will "be ready tomorrow". But Anderson quickly corrects himself, and says "the middle of next month" instead.
  • Dolenz explains that Austin is the only person who could expose his robot, to his captive Oscar Goldman. It would have been more accurate to say that Austin would be the "most likely" person, and the "largest remaining threat" to completing his plans. To state that he is the only person, is not believable.
  • When Austin is tricked into providing a diversion for the robot to access the Brahmin project file — why is the vault it's contained in, open? Why isn't it locked? (It looks like a scene was cut, possibly showing the Oscar robot unlocking it.)
  • When the Oscar robot closes the vault door, a click is heard, suggesting he has locked himself in. Yet he later just pushes the door open.
  • How is Dolenz able to receive transmissions from the robot while it's inside the vault (with door closed)? The walls of the vault are sure to be fortified with concrete and steel. This should act like a faraday cage, and block the robot's transmissions. (That said, anyone who is capable of building an ultra-realistic android and a system for recording a person's entire brain pattern, can probably figure out a way to fix the problem.)
  • When Austin leaves the Fort McAllister grounds, why doesn't he cause the security defenses to be re-activated? (This isn't a gaffe as we see the defenses shut off in order to allow the MPs to go out and collect Steve's body.)
  • As Austin tries to follow the Oscar robot to Dolenz's hideout, how does he know when to stop the car? Austin doesn't actively scan for the robot with his bionic eye, until he pulls over. (It's possible, however, that he saw the MP's car coming back without Oscar and he deduced a possible drop-off location.)
  • After Austin stops the car and jumps over a nearby fence, we hear a jumping sound effect (but not the final "bionic" sound effect, which came later in the series). Yet, any normal person could jump such a fence (indeed, that's exactly what we see - Lee Majors hopping the fence himself). So why the sound effect?
  • During the scenes where you can see both Goldman and the robot at the same time, you can often tell that another actor is filling in as a double for Richard Anderson.
  • In the scenes where Austin battles the robot, you can also tell that a stuntman sometimes takes Lee Majors' place.
  • Although this applies to every episode, it's perhaps most appropriate to point out here that the window in Oscar's office does not match the window shown in the famous establishing shot of OSI headquarters. In this episode this discrepancy is highlighted by the fact Dolenz opens the window and a window-washing platform lowers to the window. No such apparatus is in evidence in the establishing shot, either, and the building really isn't tall enough to justify such a thing (although it's possible Dolenz simply had one installed for the operation).
Continuity
  • When Dolenz shows his ID to Oscar Goldman's secretary, he's holding it horizontally. But when we see the close-up, he's holding it vertically.
  • In the first scene where Barney is talking to Steve Austin in the exercise room, the punching bag Austin is using looks normal. But in a following scene, the bag suddenly has a tear in it that wasn't there before, suggesting a scene was cut.
  • During the scene in the restaurant, when we see close-ups of the coffee being poured: some is spilled over Steve Austin's cup. Yet when Austin picks up the cup and drinks from it, no spilled coffee can be seen on the saucer.
  • During the scenes where the robot is taking snapshots of the Brahmin project files, inside the vault: the position of his arm indicates that Richard Anderson is standing off to the side, instead of behind the camera in what should be the robot's point of view.
  • The fuel cannister swung at Austin by the robot, changes appearance when it is thrown at him.
  • Before the robot hits the pillar holding up the overhanging metal roof of the nearby building, the pillar is already beginning to fall prior to the impact.

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