episode #97 - Dead Ringer

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episode #97 - Dead Ringer

Post  BoG on Fri Jan 17, 2014 1:43 pm

episode #18 of 5th season / Air Date: 02/13/78  Arrow  written by Robert Holt, Charles Mitchell Arrow directed by Arnold Laven

This episode - at the start - hints at a foray into supernatural territory. Austin is driving on a countryside road, on his way to a briefing with Goldman for his next mission, when an oncoming car causes him to swerve off the road and into a tree.  He sustains a concussion and, before he passes out, he thinks he sees a ghostly image of himself. This image reappears later, though no one else sees it, causing Rudy Wells to suggest that Austin see a female paranormal expert. She theorizes that this has something to do with Austin's near-death experience when he was in the terrible accident which resulted in his bionics (Rudy states that Austin was clinically dead for 52 seconds). She thinks that Austin's spirit may now be seeking his death. Though it's a nice theory, it's eventually revealed that - more plausibly - enemy agents are using holo technology to deceive Austin.
This is a pretty lame episode all around, starting with the baffling notion that premiere scientist Rudy Wells would recommend such paranormal claptrap to ease Austin's suffering. Though Austin is skeptical during much of the episode, the story presents this female expert as a possible love interest and as a legitimate scientist in her own right, even though we see by the conclusion that all her theories are just utter nonsense. It doesn't help the story that there's a lot of repetitive action (Austin running towards his apparition in the woods) and a dull tone, though there is a nice action bit of bionic leap-kicking of a door near the end, where it looks like Lee Majors is doing his own stunts.  BoG's Score: 4 out of 10
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