“The Ultimate Imposter”

S4 E12

Production 45125
Original Airdate: January 2, 1977
Episode Collage
Produced by
Lionel E. Siegel
Written by
W.T. Zacha
Lionel E. Siegel
Directed by
Paul Stanley
Guest Cast
Uncertain billing
(please edit into appropriate category if you have access to this episode)

Stephen Macht as Joe
Pamela Hensley as Jenny
Kim Basinger as Lorraine Stenger
Margaret Fairchild as Lily Stenger
David Sheiner as Stenger
Broadcast Order
Season 4
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"Task Force" "Death Probe"


Steve's longtime pal, Joe Patton, is the world's first and only computerized human, having been "fed" masses of information directly into the brain. Capable of speaking any language, adapting to any environment, and of performing virtually any task, from milking a cow to flying a jumbo jet, Joe becomes the OSI's latest super agent.



UltimateImposter titlecard

A unique typeface


  • This episode was intended to serve as a pilot for a spin-off series that never materialized.
  • As part of the spin-off effort, the credits superimposed over the beginning, with the episode title, are presented in a unique typeface, seen only here for this episode. The titles wipe on and offscreen from left to right, accompanied by a "computer" sound.
  • A few years later writers Siegel and Zacha tried the idea again as a standalone pilot, also called The Ultimate Impostor (with no mention of The Six Million Dollar Man).
  • During one scene, Stenger suspects Lyle Montrose (the criminal chemist that Joe is impersonating) to be an impostor. Stenger holds Joe at gunpoint and demands that he answers several personal questions including the Judge's name that sentenced Motrose to prison for tax invasion. At first Joe struggled to find the answer, giving the appearance that the computer or the program that gave Joe his abilities may be flawed. An alternate explanation is suggested in the 1979 TV Movie, The Ultimate Impostor, where it is established that Joe's brain can only retain any and every information fed to him through the computer for 72 hours before the information starts to fade. This may explain the reason why Joe had to struggle to remember the judge's name, assuming the writers had already developed this plot wrinkle from its Six Million Dollar Man beginnings, without getting the exposition on the screen.
  • This episode features future Oscar winner, Kim Basinger in one of her earliest acting roles.



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