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Things don't look good for Bionic Woman

by Bob Sassone, posted Dec 5th 2007 3:43PM

Bionic WomanWe've been talking about NBC's Bionic Woman every week this season. How the show "has potential" and is "entertaining," while at the same time I think we can all agree it's really disappointing, has been all over the place, and has a lead that has the personality of the flashlight that is currently on my desk. What went wrong?

Brian Stelter over at The New York Times TV Decoder blog has a rundown on what happened to the show, from the pre-launch hype to how the numbers dropped so badly that NBC even took the repeat off of Saturday nights and replaced it with a repeat of Chuck.

According to Stetler: "TV Guide called it "the fall's most talked about new action drama" and NBC poured tens of millions of dollars into promotion. In preseason poll, the show ranked No. 1 in the "would definitely watch" category and in measurements of audience awareness, it scored almost 80 percent ­ higher than any other new show this fall."

It was hyped, though I don't know if TV Guide calling something "the fall's most talked about new action drama" means anything. Did a lot of other action dramas premiere this fall? I think that the attention it got was based on two things: it was from the Battlestar Galactica people and people had nostalgia for the original. That's why it polled so well and the first episode numbers were so good.

Stetler goes on to say: "Then the program premiered. It delivered a solid 13.6 million viewers, suggesting a high level of sampling. But many people never returned: if the show's ratings were plotted on a chart, they would show a dramatic and consistent weekly decline."

Wow, that sounds like another hour long NBC drama that was canceled earlier this year.

With the show's increasingly bad ratings, the critical drubbing it takes each week, and now the writers strike (plus the fact that NBC hasn't given it a full season order like they've given to Chuck and Life), I would say this show is definitely not going to se a second season.

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Sadly I have to agree with most about the demise of this show ... I blame it most on very poor writers ... just get to the action and forget about all the soap opera stuff that seems to go no where. Action, Action, Action and more of it ... come on this is Bionic Women not Bionic Soap Opera evening style ...

January 07 2008 at 6:55 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Alex Samuals

I have got to say this show could be brilliant. It has action, it has sexy, it full of gadgets but.. The sister is a total waster.. get shot of the bitch. Should have gone with the deaf girl

January 03 2008 at 4:03 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

It's at this point that I refer you to my post after episode 1 where I said this show just won't make it. If I had a link to it that'd be really cool, but I don't.

December 12 2007 at 8:54 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

How can we capture the audience of Gilmore Girls and Battlestar Galactica in one show?

Are you serious? We will have to overhype it just to get people to watch it in the first place.

Why do I get the feeling that is the conversation that was had?

I have to agree with the comments about the writing being horrible and taking the show down. The premise for the lead is o.k but the fact she never has challenges that she MEETS which force her to correctly grow into her job is what makes the whole dynamic less than expected.

December 09 2007 at 8:50 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Is there any chance this show could re-launch or something and go a different direction. Some of the characters work. I hate piling on the lead, but Ryan isn't right for the role and the girls are just useless. The show could even go back and follow Katee Sackhoff before things go wrong. The show doesn't seem sure of itself and the writing can be all over the place. Sometimes things are trivial and then it's serious. The show doesn't know what direction it's going. If it is to be serious at all, I think it would be better with Sackhoff. Ryan could work, but they need to drop the luggage around her and have her grow up quick. This show isn't supposed to be laughed at like it is a comedy - or Chuck. If it is supposed to be a comedy, I recommend more sound effects.

December 07 2007 at 4:00 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I have to take exception to some of the comments made here; especially the ones directed at the actress. I'm not a fan of hers and couldn't name anything she has been in, but it's not her fault this show has become such a disaster. I felt that her acting was fine. The ones that weren’t up to par are the director and writers where the blame should ultimately lay. Sorry for the Chris Crocker moment.

I too felt this show had promise, especially when I heard they did more of an updated with the main character that could also have been part of the reason this show fell apart. I like that she was a bartender. I like the fact the BF got her in the program. I didn't care for the other BW character nothing against her; I just think her storyline came in to soon. I definitely didn't care for the little sister. She was too much. Really

December 06 2007 at 7:48 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I've watched this show from the beginning, although for the life of me I can't think of why I did. I never liked a single thing from BW. Not the overly dramatic fight in the rain, not the "amazing" stunt when the truck crashed into the car (which "Life" just did 10 episodes later in a MUCH more effective fashion), not the lame bionic stuntwork from the later episodes, not the acting, not "Starbuck", not the sister, not Jaime, not Ferrer, not the crisis-of-the-week, nothing. Yet I still watched.

I may be in therapy for months trying to determine why I tortured myself like this. On the bright side, maybe they can move Life up to the 9p.m. time slot.

December 06 2007 at 12:03 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

If I recall correctly, didn't Eick leave the show after the Pilot was produced? If not him, someone of importance must have because the tone and scripting of the show went deep in the dumper after the ORIGINAL pilot (see your favorite bitTorrent for proof). That pilot, in it's original form had an interesting cast, such as a MUCH better "Little Sister" character; the MTV runaway hacker they replaced her with was the first strike against the show in my book.

And as for Michelle Ryan... having seen "Jekyll" I was incredibly excited anticipating Bionic Woman. It was painfully evident upon watching that Sackoff steals the show and the casting should have been reversed. Ryan should have been allowed to use her native accent, how cool would that have been for the "Evil" character? I suspect that the real deficiencies lie BEHIND the cameras (cough DIRECTING cough), since most in the cast have shown great talent in previous roles.

Anyway, the MINUTE they revealed that the boyfriend was dead in the second episode, I turned to my wife and said, "I bet we watch MAYBE one more episode for Starbuck, but this is a STEAMING pile of disappointment." 3 weeks later, 2 unwatched eps had were being deleted from the DVR and the "Bionic Letdown" was gone from our schedule.

The ONLY show we absolutely LOVE this season, and have NEVER been disappointed in, has been the incredible "Pushing Daisies." Thank GOD in heaven that someone had the BALLS (guy or gal) to greenlight the best show of the year (hell, maybe even the decade on the big 4 nets).

December 06 2007 at 10:22 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to arr4's comment

Did David Eick actually depart this series from the beginning? Can we confirm that somewhere? Because if he did, that would explain A LOT about why this show is such crap.

And if David Eick did, in fact, leave this show... then I owe him a big apology for dragging his name through the mud here in the comments.

Whomever took over should be fired, but I have a feeling that this will happen anyway.

December 06 2007 at 3:36 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Bob, I agree. Sunset 60 was just as bad and unwatchable as the Bionic woman.

December 06 2007 at 10:20 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Sure it's not that great of a show, but Michelle Ryan is one of the most gorgeous women on TV. That's why I keep watching.

December 06 2007 at 9:04 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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