SCORE: 3 out of 4 Tennis Balls
December 22, 1976
Mood Ring: Blue
Jaime was a police woman tonight. She threw her gun at a bad guy instead of shooting him. She was also really good at saving old ladies. She helped one get her purse back and then she saved the old lady on that poster. Then she went out on a date with that other cop at the end to eat lousy lasagna. Steve always knows where to find better restaurants.
THE BIONIC WOMAN 2x11
Tonight Jaime joins the force to fight both local AND international crime. Seriously, somebody give this woman a raise.
December 22, 2013
Dear Bionic Blondes,
Mood Ring: Blue
I don't know about you, but I have been on pins and needles since Jaime graduated from Santa Regina police academy last week. Like most new college grads, would she don a backpack and tour Europe? Move back in with her parents? (oops, guess we can check THAT one off the list) One thing's for sure, in today's job market NO WAY Jaime could expect to find an actual job right away…
Oh hey look, the Bionic Woman is INSTANTLY employed in the Santa police department thanks to Uncle Oscar's OSI connections. Some kids get all the breaks.
Daddy Goldbucks starts us off with a recap of last week's episode, which includes a few clips that weren't used in Part 1, including a new firing range scene. I would like everybody to note that they repeated Welt Welton calling Jaime "babe" TO HER FACE. I love it when we choose the same condescending pull quotes. Yadda yadda and now the conclusion of Jaime's Shield…
But first, don't forget to pour yourself a martini, and like every good cop, make sure you have a back up. As Jaime's junior police cadets, we'll also be making lots of episode stops for DONUTS. Krispy Kreme, if you have ‘em!
The Bionic Woman was 4 and a half minutes late for her show tonight. Is this any way to start your new job, Miss Sommers?! Jaime is in another meeting with Oscar and Commissioner Hart in that grotesque green carpeted office again, getting a brief uniform respite in jeans, a white turtleneck and a blue sweater plus yay, the return of her enneagram necklace!
Jaime has to keep correcting the guys on how to pronounce her fellow female cadet's name "Rosignano" in the script, and we soon learn that all the other main supporting cast classmate members have been assigned to work together in the 5th precinct, too. This is code for we are only going to decorate one set.
Oscar also explains in a completely unrelated case (cough) that A WOMAN, A LEADER we saw last week on Arleen's dorm poster—Premiere Rinja Gabrin—is coming to town, so he'll be busy as her escort service—under the code name "Guardian Angels."
I mean even Jaime makes a reactionary face to this obvious inside joke on Charlie's Angels. (This is future payback to Cozi-TV for giving Kate, Farrah and Jaclyn the coveted Tuesday prime time slot in 2013 and airing her series later. Well played, bionic producer people.)
Robocop: Hooray, it is now the Bionic Woman’s first official day on the force as the original female Robocop! And unfortunately our last wardrobe change for the remainder of this episode— into her standard blue issue uniform. Her hair will be pulled back in a bun, too. Get used to it, kids. Jaime is now a police force fashionista.
And why did I not notice this last week? OMG look how GINORMOUS her official silver uniform shield is. Seriously, is this a badge or actual piece of medieval armor? Thanks, now I’m going to be focused on this for the rest of the episode.
Anyway, while we attempt to get used to this shield, DON'T EVER get used to this next horrific scene where all the male police officers are whistling and ogling while the captain introduces their new female officers to the precinct at roll call.
This sexist demonstration is beyond offensive, while the captain tells the guys to "settle down or I'll tell your wives." Excuuuuse me? Yeah because naturally the only thing wrong with their demeaning behavior here is the fact their wives might find out… vs. the humiliation being suffered by the 3 women they are directing it towards at this very moment? I think a visit to Human Resources and a little sensitivity training is in order for this entire department, Captain Crud.
Segueing to Captain Crud, by now it has been revealed to viewers he is in cohorts with the foreign spy Parker to get rid of Jaime Sommers and Arleen Smith-Hart, because they stand in the way of their plans… which have also finally been unveiled. They wish to kidnap the Premiere, whisk her away in a helicopter and sell her to the highest hate bidder.
It's comical when Jaime gets her over-accessorized police belt (equipped with gun holster, billy club, hand cuffs and probably some extra bullets or something) stuck in her desk when she tries to stand up to be introduced. Of COURSE her assigned partner would turn out to be Mr. B-Word Welton (ugh), while Arleen gets stuck with Bad Cop (and former hall monitor) Partnow. Then they get their local crime be-on-the-lookout-for daily report, which includes a mugger who always wears a brown jacket, and the theft of 2 motorcycles that are similar to the ones police use. Okay, hit the streets!!
Jaime and Arleen (who is scarfing down a banana, causing Jaime to nickname her "Munch-o") stop by Parker's file clerk desk to see if she will run some checks on that red delivery van from last week. But then they get interrupted by Welton yelling at Jaime, "Are you police persons just gonna stand around and gab all day long, or are you gonna WORK?" Well at least she’s been upgraded from a babe to an actual person now.
A-hahaha!! Jaime's hysterical eyeroll reaction here when she mocks that "Our task master calls." —earns tonight’s Adorbs Award.
I bet this is what Oscar meant when he told Jaime to be careful out there. Because in about 30 years, cyber geeks will invent animated gifs to permanently capture all your funny faces and post them on the internet. (Refresh browser for animated gif) -->
After they walk away, Parker— while smack dab in the middle of this busy precinct, picks up the phone and starts talking in her thick Russian accent about their suspicious red delivery truck. I honestly can't understand how nobody has effin figured out SHE'S THE ONE. Especially with no bionic ears around in this series to easily eavesdrop.
I guess because Jaime's too busy bionic-hearing other crimes, like a little old lady screaming for help while she and Welton are out driving around on patrol.
Jaime demands that Welton stop the car so she can chase down a mugger, but I have to interrupt this exciting action sequence and hit pause while the Bionic Woman races past a shop window that says—and I promise I didn't photoshop this—Andy's Tailor Shop.
And bless this little old Aunt Bee, the latest victim of a cruel purse snatching in the Mayberry Ghetto. Officer Sommers to the rescue!
Jaime follows the mugger down an alley, picks up a trash can lid and frisbees it with her signature perfect aim to Take. Him. Down. Woo-hoo, 500 Angry Bird points!! When she approaches, he pulls a knife/dagger on her, but she bends the blade and orders him to drop it, or she'll do the same thing to his muggy little fingers.
Welton finally valets the car or whatever and arrives just as Jaime is cuffing the suspect so he yells at her. Plus he points his finger at her in a mean gesture. I don’t remember why, but it’s clearly visible in this photo here.
It amuses me how careless they both are with this integral case evidence, as Welton picks up the mugger's knife to add his fingerprints, and then Jaime—hoping to mask her bionic strength— proceeds to bend it back and forth some more to pretend it was just made out of tin like a toy and then finally tosses it over her shoulder into a pile of street garbage.
Congrats Mr. Serial Mugger, you are one good lawyer away from having all the charges dropped! (HIT LAW AND ORDER TRANSITION SOUND below.)
Meanwhile Parker at the Precinct is secretly fudging documents about their thieving red delivery van (Incidentally this card prop gives an episode timeline reference date of June 1976) plus she's just ordered the death of Sommers and Smith tomorrow morning before the Premiere arrives. Whew this filing clerk stuff is hard work.
The next day Jaime calls Oscar before roll call. He's going to be busy this afternoon date-escorting the Premiere so if she needs him call his secretary. Jaime jokes, "Thanks a lot, Snow White." and then Oscar says "Goodbye, Dopey." How cute is that, and how nice of them to directly address my viewer complaint from last week they were ignoring their usual mission protocol. Sigh. The world is officially back on its bionic axis.
It was an honor to be nominated: In roll call again, Jaime is preoccupied whispering to Arleen and accidentally applauds for herself when Captain Crud congratulates her in front of the class for catching that mugger yesterday. Hilare.
Meanwhile in other serious crime news: there's a wreck at some intersection and also the department's helicopter will be tied up this afternoon. Wow, this really is Mayberry isn't it.
While out riding around on patrol, Welt asks Jaime if she's going to be hungry after work. OHNOHEDIDHNT just ask her for a date, so to clarify for the enraged audience who still remembers he condescended her to BABE, Jaime asks him if he just asked her for a date.
Welt here would like to take her to an Italian restaurant that makes the best Fettuccine Alfredo in town. Jaime only agrees to "maybe" because they might not have good Lasagna. Plus I'm sure that after all this intense police training, she really had her heart set on stopping for donuts like normal cops do.
Anyway crap, like we didn’t see this one coming. Drumroll please…. while Welt becomes officially charged as Not!Steve 2.1, the CopTastrophe.
Okay so backstory —even though Jaime was kissed by and nearly fell for the Tidy Bowl Man in Assault on the Princess, she came to her senses and rejected him in the end. Because well, jail time. Thereby sparing his nomination into the Not!Steve hall of fame.
So Welt here becomes our first official designated Not!Steve of the second season. Hurled HARD at the TV in protest: 3 orange driving cones. Do NOT cross this line, mister.
Introducing Cagney & Lacey: Meanwhile back at the precinct, Captain Crud and Parker set a trap and have one of the fake cops call in a request for back up and he specifically assigns Jaime and Arleen's patrol cars to help. Jaime radios back in hipster code "One baker seven rolling." What does that even mean? People, don't make me have to google this stuff. [okay "Baker" means swing shift. "Charlie" means day shift, etc.] When they arrive, Arleen's bad cop partner suggests the women take the alley while he and Welt go another way. And valet the cars again or something.
I am immensely tickled by how daintily Jaime and Arleen are holding their guns out—like flashlights —while checking the alley for perpetrators. Especially when we are so accustomed to a more defensive, two handed stance by both men and women in crime dramas.
It's like Jaime and Arleen are walking down a Paris runway as the Fashion Police. Literally.
But then suddenly sh*t goes down, and Jaime bionic hears a sniper on the roof cock his rifle and sees it aimed towards them.
She pushes Arleen out of the way to safety, does this gorgeous ballet, ultra smooth drop and roll maneuver (thank you, Rita), but rather than shoot her weapon at the sniper and cross the Bionic Woman series line by becoming an active participant in gun violence, Jaime THROWS it at him. Way up on the roof. Naturally she nails him and knocks the rifle out of his hands. Yessss, 1000 Angry Bird points!! Plus an extra 500 to Rita for her graceful stunt here.
The bad cop gets in his cruiser and attempts to flee, but Jaime's not gonna let him leave without ride sharing, so she has Rita leap onto the back of his car and thus ensues one of my favorite action stunts of the series.
Jaime holding on for dear life on top of the trunk of this car while the bad guy races and fishtails it down the streets of L.A. trying to shake her off. The suspense nearly makes me spill my martini.
But then it gets even scarier when the guy pulls out his gun, turns around and aims it directly at Jaime's face. Noooooooooooooooo! She ducks her head and braces herself, but then he nearly hits another car and has to focus back on the road, slams on the brakes, Jaime jumps off and he races away. Whaaaa?! This New York cabbie didn't even bother to offer her a receipt.
Stranded, Jaime walks over to some kind of private police phone enclosed in a cast iron box (what EVEN are these?) unlocks it with a special key and places a call to the precinct. She wants to talk directly with the Commissioner, but dispatch will only let her talk to Captain Crud. Hey she just spotted that red delivery truck pull into a warehouse across the street, so she's gonna go check it out please tell the commissioner and send backup kay bye.
Inside the warehouse Jaime discovers the fake police force cars but soon gets busted by the Mr. Toad's Wild Ride himself, at gunpoint, and then out of the dark corners like rats crawl Captain Crud and Parker, too.
Yeah so they were ALL in on this all along, Miss Sommers. Where have your bionic ears been? I suggest when we cut to commercial you have Rudy replace your batteries.
After a B-Plot scene with Oscar where Arleen's commissioner father finally learns she's a cop (he reassigns her to desk duty so she won't get hurt) and Captain Crud does some phone finagling to get his fake Santa cops assigned as local security for the Premiere's arrival, Parker thanks Jaime for being so nice to her at the academy. To return the favor, she asks the thugs to go easy on Jaime while handcuffing her to an iron post, chloroforming her and setting a time bomb to blow her up. See Jaime? It truly does pay to be nice to others.
While You Were Sleeping: So Jaime here's what happened while you were passed out in the warehouse. The premiere arrived at the airport with Oscar and Commissioner Hart there to greet her in a limo, with the help of the code name Guardian Angels police force they are unaware are fakes.
Your partner Welt and Arleen finally found out you are probably at the warehouse in danger, but then got captured at the precinct by Parker. Fortunately, Welt managed to escape out the door, hopped on a motorcycle and played Chips to go save you.
And then Oscar, the consummate US diplomat, gave the Madam Gabrin the glam tram tour down a pawn shop street while bragging about how Santa Regina is one of our country's most rapidly growing cities and has the lowest crime rate! Then the bad cop in the front seat pulled a gun on everybody and announced they were taking a detour to the 5th precinct.
Warehouse 13: Wait, Jaime looks like she's semi starting to wake up now. She can almost hear the siren of Welt's motorcycle. After he bangs on the doors and calls out her full name Jaime Sommers a few times (because ya never know there might be other Jaimes in there) she notices the time bomb ticking and manages to sleepy-bionic the chain free on her handcuffs to free herself from the pipe. But then she fell back to sleep because I mean come on, she's still got 2 whole minutes left on the time bomb snooze button!
Welt I mean come on you've been banging on this same locked door for like 10 minutes now calling out for “Jaime. Jaime Sommers.” Seriously could we maybe like try ANOTHER entrance?
Jaime's up and staggering around now, but is still too groggy to escape. Welt finally decides to go peek in a broken window, spots Jaime, smashes the glass with a tire rim, swashbuckles his billy club to clear the glass and leaps in like a superhero to go rescue her. Whatev. Hey look, she still has 15 seconds left on the snooze timer. GO AWAY. She needs her beauty rest.
When Welt helps Jaime up, she mentions oh hey there’s this ticking bomb (WTF?) so he quickly ushers her out the same window and over to hide behind a crate milliseconds before the warehouse blows up. Whew. I don't know about you, but I need a drink. Plus some donuts.
Motorcycle Boogie, Take 2: ACK Jaime and Welt are racing back to the precinct on a motorcycle without wearing safety helmets! (Gawd I am SUCH a mom.) So evidently Jaime trusts riding with Welt way more than that lunatic Evil Kneivel. It was completely necessary to risk helmet hair when costarring with HIM.
And now for some reason they show a submarine surfacing off the coast, so either this plot is getting even more complicated, or Universal is having a huge sale on stock footage today.
Followed by what I swear is like 15 minutes of nothing but sirens and police cars racing up and down streets as they respond to a fake dispatch for all units to go to that exploded warehouse, which Jaime already knows was just a diversion.
The kidnapped Premiere and her reportedly ultra tight security force (consisting of ONE body guard), along with Oscar and Hart are ushered into the precinct and the commissioner is utterly SHOCKED that Captain Crud is in on this, too! "They offered me a million dollars, Sam." he explains. Don't you mean One meeeelion dollarssss?? And I love how Oscar also expresses his disappointment in, "Parker. The one we least suspected." To which she and the rest of us viewers reply in unison, yeah "Who ELSE Meestuh Goldman?"
Oh yay, here comes Welt and Jaime on the motorcycle, but there are a couple guys on the front steps guarding the precinct, so Welt simply stunt drives up the front steps and crashes through the front doors because they're wearing helmets, RIGHT? Jaime and Welt jump off before the motorcycle wipes out in the hallway, Arleen tries to save the day from the jail cell everybody is locked in by grabbing one of the guard guy’s guns, but not before a few thugs manage to escape and lock the outer door.
Bionic Backup: Jaime and Welt put their academy training into action. She enters one door while he kicks down another, but he immediately bumps into Parker with a gun. So from the other side of the room Jaime throws a chair to knock out one of the bad cops (250 points!), then has Rita bionic jump over the counter—an awesome stunt that distracts Parker long enough for Welt to grab her gun. Hooray, the Premiere A Leader A Woman is saved!
BAM BAM everybody's knocking on the prison section door to be let out, and I love how Oscar walks by with a really sour face and completely ignores Jaime even when she tries to make eye contact with him. Perhaps he's a little peeved his agent didn't catch Parker's obvious Russian bad girl accent last week when they were practically BFs at the academy.
Arleen wants to know how they caught the bad guys and Welt says Jaime threw a 40 pound chair at them. She thinks he's kidding. Jaime just grins. Because yay she can finally take off this blue suit and honking huge shield. Mission accomplished. (HIT LAW AND ORDER TRANSITION SOUND below.)
At the end standing in the hallway, Jaime's let her hair out of her tight bun because we can all relax now. She puts in a good word for Arleen on what a great cop the commissioner's daughter is, causing him to leave to go make amends with her.
Then Oscar looks back and forth between Welt and Jaime and senses a flirty scene coming on so he just walks away (Oscar, take us with you!) and then it's just Jaime and Welt in the hallway. Excuse me while I pull this crime scene tape out again to separate you two.
And don't think I didn't notice here Jaime once again is holding a styrofoam CUP OF COFFEE . See I swear I am not imagining this symbolic, G-Rated substitution for you-know-what in this series. She only seems to crave coffee when she’s romancing her Not!Steves.
Welt is all bummed because he realizes his dream partner never really wanted to be a cop and gets to leave now. So to make up for it, Jaime suggests they go get that lousy Lasagna he was asking her out for earlier instead of saying goodbye. Then they walk away arm in arm. Sigh. Don't you just love happy meal endings?
Final Tally: These were a nice pair of episodes that I actually liked more than I remembered. Some interesting characters, a nice feminism message, and I thought the script was paced fairly well with story and action—with only a few places that seemed to drag as they tried to fill the 2-parter time. Plus the bionics and stunts avoided the camp zone. The only downside was the frustration that Jaime—who typically has smarter instincts— kept suspecting the wrong people. They obviously needed to do this in order to lengthen the plot, but at least they didn’t accomplish it by making her dumb.
Incidentally, the delightful actress who played Arleen, Diane Civita (last name now Cary), is married to series producer/writer James D. Parriott, and would make a return appearance playing “Mrs. Boylen” in Rancho Outcast. Our Mr. Welton— George Maharis, is a familiar (and admittedly handsome) face who was a busy actor in a lot of TV shows of this era.
How many ways can we do dark blue? On the upside, it IS a good color on Jaime. In the opening scene a white turtleneck underneath a cobalt blue sweater worn with blue jeans. Plus as mentioned earlier, the return of her enneagram necklace, last seen in Black Magic.
And then her dark blue police uniform and hat, which she wore with black tennis shoes.
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