When my wife, Kathryn saw that this "re-imagination" was "developed" by the same "creative" team that perpetrated the new Battlestar Galactica, she turned to me and said, "wow, they really love raping old shows, don't they?" That comment just about sums up my response to the dreadful pilot of this remake, which substitutes the charm of the original 1976-1978 Lindsay Wagner series with tons of mock tough guy attitude and dialogue...all spouted by women, of course (because that's not sexist; merely unpleasant).
This is less accurately The Bionic Woman than The Bionic Gilmore Girl, as the new Jaime Sommers (Michelle Ryan) has been saddled with a young adolescent sister she is caring for, in a sibling relationship clearly derivative of the Buffy/Dawn aesthetic from Buffy the Vampire Slayer. That isn't the only idea raided in this dreadful remake. There's a scene lifted directly from Superman: The Movie (1978), wherein a little girl in a jeep spies Jaime running at super speeds through the woods. In case you forgot, in Superman: The Movie, a little Lois Lane spied Clark running at super-speed over a field from her perch in the train. That was bad enough, but then the pilot had the nerve to crib the rooftop "learning your powers" scene from Sam Raimi's Spider-Man (2002).
Well, at least this Bionic Woman understands the rule that if you're going to steal, you should steal from the best. Why create something new when you can rip-off something else, and say it's "homage," right?
Anyway, Jaime is injured in an assassination attempt by the first bionic woman, Sarah Corvis, played in over-the-top fashion by a twitching, winking Katee Sackhoff, but the real target was Jaime's professor boyfriend...who just happens to be a brilliant bionic scientist. In short order, he has remade the injured Jaime into another bionic woman who, like her predecessor is hard-wired for "highly specialized warfare." In the remake, bionics means anthrocites (or nanites): microscopic robots capable of rebuilding and regenerating destroyed limbs and enhancing vision and hearing. Jaime takes the news of her upgrade poorly, which in this case means that the episode cuts to a soulful pop tune montage.
Just when this pilot episode can't get any worse, there's an unmotivated, random encounter in an alley between Jaime and a street thug which allows our bionic heroine to demonstrate her new fighting skills. Interestingly, she's not only fast and strong, she's suddenly -- without benefit of any training whatsoever -- completely agile and familiar with elaborate fighting moves..
Then, there's the final bionic showdown between Katee Sackhoff and Jaime. Like the 1998 Godzilla, it occurs in pounding rain so you can't make-out clearly just how bad the CGI effects are. As viewers, we're wise to that trick now, but Bionic Woman goes with it anyway. Faced with the clearly psychotic freak show, Corvis, the new Jaime doesn't register fear, anxiety, or any recognizable emotion whatsoever. She just goes right into the fight --presumably the twenty-four year old's first with a maniacal super villain -- without any preamble, doubts or a hint of concern. That's when you realize this show jumped the shark the moment the cameras started rolling.
Other than providing a sort of affirmative action program for the actors on Battlestar Galactica (Aaron "Tyrol" Douglas shows up too) -- please watch, they need the work!!! -- every aspect of this misbegotten remake is hackneyed, poorly conceived, and atrociously executed. The story is superficial, going nowhere in terms of the morality of biotechnology, for instance. All the details of "bionics," are given the barest lip service, as if the writer's figured that audiences couldn't understand the concept of nanocites. The deepest philosophical moment comes when Jamie asks "who gets to decide right from wrong?" Well, honey, apparently you do, because you are the bionic woman now.