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on 28 June 2006
Universal's DVD release of Season One of "The Six Million Dollar Man"(1973-74), starring Lee Majors is about average with Universal's other boxsets of their catalog pieces from the 1970's. Obviously, no restoration work has been done, much like "The Incredible Hulk" and "Kolchak-The Night Stalker". The six, single-sided discs, includes the original 13 episodes plus 3 two-part episodes, which were tele-plays/pilots that were converted into 2 part episodes for syndication. The digi-pack case has a glossy finish with various photos from the series and a brief description for each story. Video quality is superior to a VHS cassette or what you'd expect from the Sci-Fi Channel, but little more. Yes, there are film defects, blurry shots, some dirt and noise at times, but it is typical of something from this period and is not too distracting, once you are absorbed by each scintilating plot, including guest appearances by John Saxon, Lindsay Wagner and Farrah Fawcett. Audio is a typical mono track, nothing to write home about, but clear. Each disc has an animated menu, displaying a montage of Steve Austin, doing his schtick, while an EKG monitor line bounces in the background, giving you the option to play an individual episode or "Play All". There are NO extras whatsoever, except for a paper insert advertising other releases. With few exceptions, this is a typical Universal Studios(Care of Playback) release. Could it be better? Certainly. Are we likely to see a restoration job? Doubtful. So, in the mean time, with a anniversary/special edition set seeming far in the distance, if ever,(rumor has it, that a better release will occur side by side the release of the tentative theatrical spoof, now in planning) this set is acceptable for the nostalgic.
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on 14 September 2007
I live about an hours drive from where this show was filmed, and yet here's the road I had to travel to watch this set; firstly I waited about 9 years, since I believe I bought my first dvd tv boxset in 1998, and I waited for this. Then I kept waiting... Then I was clicking around one day, maybe a year ago, or was it two(?), And discovered Amazon UK has the Six Million Dollar Man Season One on DVD! Only to realize I could never play a R2 disc on a R1 player, so I passed. Again. Fastward to maybe a week ago, after having watched half of the Fall Guy S1 on DVD: I think: I simply MUST have the SMDM on DVD--I MUST!! MUST!!! So.... I investigate Region 2 players. They seem to vary in price as much as quality and since this set and the Bionic Woman may be the only shows I ABSOLUTELY have to have in my life I would import, it seemed a bit of a waste to BUY an entire unit to watch them on.... so in my mind I passed.. AGAIN. :/ However that same page had a review link to a cheapy player I already own "customers who bought this region 2 player also bought this" (my player). So I clicked... I found more than reviews of my cheapy Cyberhome player, I found a way to turn it into a Region 0 player, or more to the heart, a Region 2 player!! YES!! So in essence I already owned the player, the rest was a slamdunk. I quickly ordered the SMDM Season One set and hoped and prayed that the method to turn my player into a region free player actually worked.... I can say, it did.

I must say I had not watched an entire episode of this show since I was a child of the 70's. Still, the memories lingered, and while I have had my memories charred to a crisp by shows that didn't live up to higher expectations I can say, Steve Austin is more than a man barely alive, he's also a marvel. The show thus far has been utterly fantastic. I have since watched the three pilot movies (which even in run times are a bargain) and the first episode Population Zero and can report they are ALL of the highest order of 70's cheese and entertainment. One part Bond, one part cyborg bouncer, one part defiant playboy; what can I say, I'm a sucker for a renegade with a sarcastic tongue and a golden heart.

As far as the video quality, if you pass on this set because of some reviews here, you are a fool. I think the clarity is often brilliant. Sometimes there are scenes which use "stock Nasa footage" and the like which are rough around the edges but everything else to my eye is as good as I would expect a show from 1974 to look. Could they have done more...? I suppose but the CONTENT of the action, direction, and characters are paramount, or in this case Universal:) and on that front it's aces high.

The box art is great, love the shot of Steve on the front! Sadly there are NO extras and I would have liked some booklet to explain the episodes but all in all I am thrilled beyond my wildest dreams with my purchase and this show. I suppose waiting for as long as I did made me appreciate it all the more but here's to hoping Season three is in the works. I've already ordered Season 2 of the Six Million Dollar Man and also BOTH seasons of the Bionic Woman.. I feel like a child reborn, or is that rebuilt?
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VINE VOICEon 24 April 2007
Its great to have the first season of "The Six Million Dollar Man" on DVD but why it wasn't remastered like "The Bionic Woman" bizarre!

Lee Majors is ideal as the down to earth austronaut Steve Austin horrifically injured in the pilot.

The pilot "The Moon and The Desert"is shown in its enterity rather than the edited vhs copy I've had for years,the scene where Steve attempts suicide is still moving as is the scene when Steve rescues a child from a burning car and damages his bionic arm,making the mother of the boy ask,"What are you?"

"Wine Woman and War" has some much needed humour injected into it but is missing the groovy one off 70s credits with the song "He's The Man" sung by Dusty Springfield cut out although the song is played at the end.

Some of the stories do drag in places and seeing these early epiosodes its clear more humour was added later.

"Survival Of The Fittest" is a good story about a plane crash and and an assassin out to kill Oscar Goldman (Richard Anderson)reused in "The Bionic Woman" as "Fly Jaime" with Dr.Rudy Wells(Martin E.Brooks) as the target.

"Day of The Robot" sees the debut of Dr.Dolenz who returns another two times to thrawt Steve and Oscar.

Lee Major's wife at the time,Farrah Fawcett-Majors makes a guest appearance in "The Rescue of Anthea One" very straight laced and mostly hair up,very different from her later role as the bubbly Jill Munroe in "Charlie's Angels".

William Shatner makes a rare guest appearance in "Burning Bright" as a fellow austronaut affected by an electrical field in space that gives him amazing powers,Steve's grief at his eventual death played very well by Lee Majors.

Fellow Star Trek actor George Takei appears in "The Coward" but is killed off too quickly in a great story when Steve has to check some old plane crash and find out if his father was really a coward,it sees the debut of Martha Scott as Steve's Mum Helen,who landed a regular role on "The Bionic Woman".

Strangely,Lindsay Wagner is listed as a co-star in this first DVD set but doesn't make her debut as Jaime Sommers until season 2!

Really enjoyed it,shame it wasn't remastered though!
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on 19 March 2001
It's about time. The Six Million Dollar Man was one of the best TV shows of the 70's and has largely been unavailable on video or DVD. The two "The Secret of Bigfoot" episodes are some of the best of the show. I remember watching these episods as a kid and thought they were great, and they still hold up with time. The Bigfoot character is impressive and the tube-like gateway that Steve Austin has to run through is wild. "The Seven Million Dollar Man" episode is a good one too. All in all, these are some of the best episodes of this classic 70's show. They don't make them like this anymore. I'm hoping they will release this DVD in the U.S. as well.
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on 11 April 2003
This is a real trip down memory lane! From the opening credits ("Shes breaking up...") to the first appearance of the Bigfoot, this is classic pulpy 70s television at its best. Don't watch this with modern eyes, rather watch through a seven year olds eyes and you'll love every crazy moment of this good innocent fun DVD. What amazes me is how much I remember of these episodes considering I last saw them way back in the early 70s. The Bigfoot 2 parter has to be among the best episodes (were the writers on something when they came up with this bonkers "Bigfoot & Spacemen inside a mountain" storyline or what?) and Barney the "Seven Million Dollar Man" stuck in my memory too. I think another fave was "The Day Of The Robot" with John Saxon as Maskatron (or was that just the name of the toy?) which is on another DVD volume of this series. Hope they continue to release TSMDM on DVD as I'm really enjoying this memorable crazy stuff.
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on 7 September 2004
Episodes 1 and 2 "The Secret of Bigfoot"
Episodes 3 "The Seven Million Dollar Man"
Steve Austin goes is search of two missing scientists in a state forest when he comes in contact with a huge beast, believed to be bigfoot. Great fight sequences follow with Austin discovering the beasts true identity, a mechanical construction from another world.
Austin comes in contact with the brains behind the beast, beings from another world hiding out in a cave that have been covertly studying humans for centuries. This is a two part adventure and one I remember from when I was a child. It has always been my favourate.
In the 3rd episode, Austin tries to console a friend that befell an accident and now inturn, has cybernetics running throughout his body. His friend cost $7.000.000. An inprovement on Austin or maybe inflation? who knows, but unlike Austin Barney Miller is struggling with his new found talents. He begins to hate himself and everone around him. He doesn't feel like a man anymore just a machine. He begins to abuse his power and uses excessive force.
I love this DVD it has 3 fantastic episodes so the value for money is assured. Trust me, if it wasn't any good I wouldn't be writing this review, I have better things to do.
Whilst you don't get any extras with FlashBack, I would like to thank them anyway for being the only ones to make the effort to bring out all of the old favourites.
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The Six Million Dollar Man was a popular science fiction show. The show was based on the novel "Cyborg" by Martin Caidin, The title role of Steve Austin was played by Lee Majors. For some people the show was just far fetched nonesence. Some people would even dismiss it as daft. However, the show had one major ingrediant. It was fun. This is science fiction where anything is possible. Where the "what if" thought comes into play. This was a good show that you shouldn't take too seriously. It was meant to be far fetched, fun and entertaining. The world is serious enough so this was great escapism.
The story of the original novel and the later series is the crash of former astronaut Steve Austin as he tests a new craft, Austin is severely injured in the crash and is "rebuilt". His right arm, both legs and left eye are replaced by "bionic" implants that enhance his strength, speed and vision far above human normality.
Caidin's novel was a best-seller when it was published in 1972, and he followed it up with three sequels. Only the plotline from the original novel formed the basis for this first series for Television. In 1973, Cyborg was loosely adapted for the TV movie titled The Six Million Dollar Man: "The Moon And The Desert," starring Majors as Austin. The film, which won an award, modified Caidin's plot, and notably made Austin a civilian astronaut rather than a colonel in the United States Air Force. In this pilot film the story follows reasonably closely to the original book. It is a study of how one man wakes up in hospital seemingly unhurt and gradually finds to his horror that whilst drifting in and out of conciesness he had agreed to be "rebuilt" and now is only half the man he used to be. He struggles with the mental trauma of having an arm and legs that seem normal but are not his own. We see him adapting to the new limbs and his new life. Austin gradually masters the new situation and realises the potential of his strength, speed and sight. He agrees to use these abilities to work for the government. His boss is Oliver Spencer played by Darren McGavin. This first TV movie uses no electronic sound effects or slow motion running that will become the regular features in the later weekly episodes. The scientist involved in implanting Austin's bionic hardware, Dr. Rudy Wells, was played in this pilot movie. by Martin Balsam, then occasionaly in the series by Alan Oppenheimer, and then regularly by Martin E. Brooks.
The first film was a major ratings success. The second TV movie was called The Six Million Dollar Man: "Wine, Women and War" and the third was titled The Six Million Dollar Man: "The Solid Gold Kidnapping. The last two movies, produced by Glen A. Larson, notably introduced a James Bond flavour to the series and reinstated Austin's status from the novels as an Air Force colonel. Confident of success, the actual weekly series of one hour episodes were produced in 1974 and the James Bond-gloss of the second and third movies were replaced with a more down-to-earth Austin. The character Oliver Spencer had also been replaced with Oscar Goldman plyed by Richard Anderson.
This first series on this DVD set is complete. It was a popular series. It had the opening catch phrase "We can rebuild him...we have the technology". Also the show featured the slow-motion action sequences. This was an idea that was copied from another succesful show "Kung Fu" but had the the accompanying "electronic" sound effects. . In one episode Austin investigates what happened to the entire missing population of a town. In another episode he is asigned to protect a missile developer who turns out to be a Robot. He also has to rescue another astronaut from space. The series uses some archive NASA film footage from time to time. The picture and sound are good despite the lack of restoration work. There are only thirteen episodes of the hour long set. But together with the original three TV movies this makes a good set
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on 16 August 2009
A great bit of retro TV from the 70's. Not having seen it for all those years I'm surprised as to how good it was as I recall that some TV productions of the time were dire. The special effects, whilst in the earlier ones are simple were definitely good for the time. Some of the borrowed footage inserts from the US Navy/Government etc are laughable in that they have different helicopters etc to the one in the episode and that sort of thing, but so what. Don't take it too seriously and enjoy it for what it was when you were 8/9/10/11/12/13/14/..21..33..45
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on 13 November 2005
I am disappointed that Universal just dumped the episodes onto DVD without digitally restoring them and cleaning them up of dirt. What you get is all episodes having constant dirt and dust flashing onto the screen and dull picture quality.
Universal digitally restored and cleaned up of dirt ALL the episodes in The Bionic Woman Season 1 DVD but why not for The Six Million Dollar Man Season 1 DVD ??
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on 20 April 2010
Well, I was a huge fan of this as a kid, (especially the Bionic Woman, as I'm a girl!). I bought this for my husband as I thought he'd love it, but my 4 year old son loves it the most! He is glued for the whole episode (I play one a week in true 70's fashion)and I so prefer this to power rangers etc. this has some great educational moments as well as being fantastic fun - Whatever happened to those heroes? (In the words of the stranglers!)My little boy is discovering a bit of the wonder we had for this stuff 30 years ago and my daughter will be
watching it too when she's a bit older.. I've actually ordered some Jaime Sommers just for her (and me!).
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