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CYBORG: The Retro-Con Cut

bionicbob

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CYBORG: THE SIX MILLION DOLLAR MAN

tagline: "THE RETRO-CON CUT"

Basic details: My absolute favorite hero of my childhood was THE SIX MILLION DOLLAR MAN. For me, it was a comic book come to life before my very young eyes. Each week I would watch Colonel Steve Austin do battle with spys, evil masterminds, robots, aliens and even a bionic sasquatch! It is in my mind, one of the greatest adventure televisions shows of all time. It would be years later that I would finally watch the original trilogy of tv movies that inspired the regular series. To my surprise, there were many discrepancies and outright contradictions between the movies and the series proper. The main ones being no Oscar Goldman, different actor playing Dr. Rudy Wells, Steve as a civilian test pilot and how Steve was written (as a bionic James Bond) in the second and third movies.

My intent is to try and reconcile some of these elements from the tv movies with the established continuity of the television series. Using the season one premiere episode "Population: Zero" as my foundation, I have created a series of flashback scenes which retro-con Steve's bionic origin.




original film names: THE SIX MILLION DOLLAR MAN
Episodes/tv movies used:
--Cyborg
--Wine, Women & War
--Population Zero
--The Deadly Replay
--The Seven Million Dollar Man
--The Bionic Woman parts 1 & 2

new film name : CYBORG: THE RETRO-CON CUT
film studio name :Universal Studios
edit crew name : Bionic Bob
persons involved: Me
Date Original Film Was Released : Cyborg and Population Zero 1973
Date Edit Was Released : February 2012
Original Runtime : 44 minutes
New Runtime :1 hour 16 minutes
Cut/Add Time: cut about 3 minutes
added about 37 minutes


Fanedit details:
Intention: Retro-con Steve Austin's bionic origin so it fits better with the television continuity.

Editing Details:
Used iMac 10.5, Mac the Ripper, MPEG Streamclip, Final Cut Express, GarageBand, and iDVD

Cuts removed/added/extended (add list of what was changed):
--New Opening Titles
--added 4 flashbacks using footage from the tv movies and episodes
--reorder a couple of scenes
--cut Oliver Sempler
--cut Martin Balsam as Rudy Wells
--removed references to Steve as a civilian pilot
--added bionic sound effects
--added additional music by original series composer Oliver Nelson

TRAILER:
 

Rogue-theX

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This review is based on my opinions and my personal viewing experience, nothing is meant as an attack. Spoiler warning!

I really liked this edit! I like the music replacement because i could never tell where there was new music; so it is very well done. There are some volume issues, but probably wont be noticed by the casual viewer and they did not spoil the experience for me. I think i heard a small pop at the closing of one of the flashback scenes that i don't think was supposed to be there.
I would have worked on the style of the transitions between flashbacks more, Bob almost had the Easy Rider type transitions going in a few places and it would have been better if perfected a bit more IMO (however interlacing issues may have may have made it very difficult for Bob to do all the things he would have liked to do in this matter). When Steve is looking into the fire: i thought it would have worked better if you cut to a shot of a garbage can burning (close up shot of fire, not necessarily a burning garbage can) and have it zoom in on the fire, as it zooms in it blurs and transitions into the flashback, then when the flashback is over use the same method only reverse: unblur/unzoom -> shot of steve watching fire, then you wouldn't have had to re-use the eye shot (which wasn't colored for night). Some of the transitions felt a bit forced but if i didn't know it was a fanedit i probably wouldnt have thought about it (but there's only so much to work with when fanediting). But that's just me. I like the slick use of the heartbeat, and black and white to color and back again works just right!
I felt a few bits of dialog in the flashbacks were odd as i wondered what they were talking about (when they would mention stuff from another episode).
I think BionicBob accomplished what he set out to do, Great Job man!
I must say that i liked The Lost Mission bonus edit the best, it was hilarious and fun as hell :D
The menu design is the best Bob has done thus far IMO and the extras are very nicely executed.
I mentioned earlier in this review that Bob was faced with interlacing problems and had to use some filters to make sure it wasn`t apparent, i NEVER ONCE noticed any interlacing on my tv so Good work, Bob!

8.75/10

Keep up the good work Bob, you rock!
 

bionicbob

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I really liked this edit!

YAY!!!:)

I like the music replacement because i could never tell where there was new music; so it is very well done.

A Bionic Bob First!!! Double YAY!!!:):)

There are some volume issues, but probably wont be noticed by the casual viewer and they did not spoil the experience for me. I think i heard a small pop at the closing of one of the flashback scenes that i don't think was supposed to be there.

Now that sounds much more like the Bionic Bob edits we are used to... LOL!!!:lol:
I know the "pop" you are talking about. There are actually a few of them scattered throughout. Even though I made my audio files AIFF, some still had some crackle and pop noises... "shrug"... As many of you know by now, my patience for audio work can be somewhat limited at times...:p

When Steve is looking into the fire: i thought it would have worked better if you cut to a shot of a garbage can burning (close up shot of fire, not necessarily a burning garbage can) and have it zoom in on the fire, as it zooms in it blurs and transitions into the flashback, then when the flashback is over use the same method only reverse: unblur/unzoom -> shot of steve watching fire, then you wouldn't have had to re-use the eye shot (which wasn't colored for night).

Zooming into the fire, that is a brilliant idea Rogue. I will steal that for next time. As this was my time working exclusively with Originally Interlaced Source Material, I had a bit of a learning curve throughout the edit. One would think it was a simple matter of converting the material. But it seemed different filters or convertors or work methods, all rendered slightly different results, none entirely satisfying me. One issue I encountered with the converted material, when I tried to manipulate the video (either alter the speed faster or slower, or zoom in or out), it would play fine in the viewer but after rendered it often had a glitch or skip in the video. Still learning.:-o

As for repeatedly using a zoom in of Steve's bionic eye as a tool for the Flashbacks, maybe I went a wee bit overboard. But Lee Majors squint (almost as good as Clint Eastwoods') is a classic signature from the show and whenever they did a flashback they would zoom in on Steve's bionic eye for the transition. Unfortunately, I could not find a clip of Steve using his bionic eye while wearing a space helmut or a good night shot. I am sure the clip exists, but I did not have time to go through all 100 episodes... but I am working on it. Hee hee!;-)

I like the slick use of the heartbeat, and black and white to color and back again works just right!

Again, YAY!!!:)

I felt a few bits of dialog in the flashbacks were odd as i wondered what they were talking about (when they would mention stuff from another episode).

I can see that. I think I know the scenes you are talking about, they were purposely made vague and open to interpretation. The one scene directly connects with the LOST MISSION bonus feature, the other attempts to explain the disappearance of a significant character from the story.:-D

I must say that i liked The Lost Mission bonus edit the best, it was hilarious and fun as hell

Glad to hear that, as that was the one portion of the edit I was the most nervous about. I really could not decide if it worked or if I even liked it.:eek:

The menu design is the best Bob has done thus far IMO and the extras are very nicely executed.

Ahhh the magic of iDVD templates! Plus, I had some amazing artwork to inspire me!!! ;-)

Thanks for posting the review Rogue! Very much appreciated!:):):)
 

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Looking forward to watching this. Busy couple of days, but will get to it asap.
 

Dwight Fry

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I loved this edit! I'm not all that familiar with the source material, but it's hard to tell this was a fanedit at all. The elements I know were fanedited, were integrated in such an organic manner that seem to belong there from the beginning. I particularly liked how the transitions to the flashbacks were handled, with black and white bits marking the beginning and end of each one, but avoiding the all too easy (and tired) temptation of making them all B&W.

The episode that forms the bulk of the story was well chosen, it's compelling and has a very Twilight Zone flavor, particularly at the start with the deserted town, the bodies, and the doll. Given that it was the first one in the series, it has that introduction feel that fits nicely with Steve's backstory. There were two little (fanedited) bits I particularly loved: after Dr. Forbes asks Steve "What's underneath your shell?" Bob inserts a shot of the bionic arm. That made me smile. The other one is, when in a flashback Steve, recovering from the operation, closes his bionic fist for the first time, the bionic sound effect is inserted and I thought that made the moment very powerful and heroic.

Not all was perfect, though. A couple of things didn't totally convince me. One was the opening credits sequence, as it's on a black background and with each of the names staying for a bit too long. It can be off-putting. Maybe I would have used the first half of the first flashback, before the plane starts to fail, as the credits background. BTW, where the heck was Clifton James aka Sheriff J.W. Pepper in this? He's credited but I didn't spot him.

My second quibble was with the scene between Goldman and Dr. Wells. Not only I thought it wasn't narratively needed and included a mention to the villain of the second TV movie that is a non sequitur, but since it's part of a flashback, how can Steve remember a conversation he didn't witness?

Technically, this might be the most polished Bionic Bob edit to date. ZERO interlacing issues. I'm not totally sure about the aspect ratio, though: it feels like it should be full 4:3 but is slightly stretched horizontally with slim black bars on the top and bottom. Nothing too distracting, though. And the audio might include the odd pop and crackle, but so do official releases of old TV shows.

The Lost Mission was fun, and better than I expected. Probably because I was fearing Roger Moore quips and you had Steve not utter a single word. But the only thing I thought sucked was the demise of the villain, not even thinking of getting out of the way of the missile and patiently waiting for it against a background of wrinkled paper. But the edit itself was very nice, and could almost be part of the upcoming silent consecution. And, of course, excellent music.

If you make more edits of the show, I will be definitely watching. Keep 'em coming! 9/10.
 

bionicbob

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A big THANK YOU Dwight! A very generous review. Means a lot coming from you.:)

There were two little (fanedited) bits I particularly loved: after Dr. Forbes asks Steve "What's underneath your shell?" Bob inserts a shot of the bionic arm. That made me smile. The other one is, when in a flashback Steve, recovering from the operation, closes his bionic fist for the first time, the bionic sound effect is inserted and I thought that made the moment very powerful and heroic.

I am glad those worked. I was worried maybe it was a bit too melodramatic.

One was the opening credits sequence, as it's on a black background and with each of the names staying for a bit too long. It can be off-putting.

Yes, in all my preview audiences, this one always split my reviewers right down the middle.
Half liked, half bored.
Me like.:-D

My second quibble was with the scene between Goldman and Dr. Wells. Not only I thought it wasn't narratively needed and included a mention to the villain of the second TV movie that is a non sequitur, but since it's part of a flashback, how can Steve remember a conversation he didn't witness?

The intent of the scene was to give Oscar a tiny arc in his relationship with Steve. It also sets up the bonus feature THE LOST MISSION.
But you are totally right, technically it does not make sense for this to appear as part of Steve's flashback, as part of Steve's memory. But then technically it does not make sense to see the operators in Mission Control during Steve's flight, or to see Steve's surgery when he is unconscious, or to see the viewpoint of Nurse Manners during Steve recovery. I think it is just something you have to go with..... Like a man running at 60mph! LOL!:p

BTW, where the heck was Clifton James aka Sheriff J.W. Pepper in this? He's credited but I didn't spot him.

Clifton James played Steve's aircraft mechanic in the first flashback.
Interestingly enough, I watched the movie WILL PENNY for the first time last night,
Lee Majors first movie role and Clifton James was in that with him too.

. I'm not totally sure about the aspect ratio, though: it feels like it should be full 4:3 but is slightly stretched horizontally with slim black bars on the top and bottom. Nothing too distracting, though.

Yeah, that one has me scratching my head too. It was full 4:3 in the canvas/previewer but seemed to have gotten very slightly altered after it was put through the interlace convertor. I have triple checked all the settings and everything was correct... very mysterious. :-D

The Lost Mission was fun, and better than I expected.

Good to hear. I honestly can no longer stand it. Such a terrible movie to begin with... even at 13 minutes it still makes me ill.
Wow, could they find a stunt double that looked any less than Lee Majors? They did not even bother to match their hair styles.
Oh and that green screen (or whatever it was called back then) shot of Steve running and carrying the damsel is distress... embarrassing.:oops:

If you make more edits of the show, I will be definitely watching.

I guarantee there will be at least one more.
Prepare thy self for ATTACK OF THE FEMBOTS!!!:eek:
 

Dwight Fry

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bionicbob said:
The intent of the scene was to give Oscar a tiny arc in his relationship with Steve. It also sets up the bonus feature THE LOST MISSION.
But you are totally right, technically it does not make sense for this to appear as part of Steve's flashback, as part of Steve's memory. But then technically it does not make sense to see the operators in Mission Control during Steve's flight, or to see Steve's surgery when he is unconscious, or to see the viewpoint of Nurse Manners during Steve recovery. I think it is just something you have to go with..... Like a man running at 60mph! LOL!:p
The Mission Control guys can be justified because they're in contact with Steve via radio, so it's the way Steve pictures the situation visually, while there's no way he could have any reference of that conversation between Oscar and Rudy.

bionicbob said:
Clifton James played Steve's aircraft mechanic in the first flashback.
Interestingly enough, I watched the movie WILL PENNY for the first time last night,
Lee Majors first movie role and Clifton James was in that with him too.

Oh, yes, just checked and there he is. Quite a blink-and-you'll-miss-him part, one would expect him to have a bigger role since you billed him so high. In any case, it's nice to see him in a non-annoying part for a change. ;)

bionicbob said:
Prepare thy self for ATTACK OF THE FEMBOTS!!!:eek:

fembots.jpg
 

bionicbob

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The Mission Control guys can be justified because they're in contact with Steve via radio, so it's the way Steve pictures the situation visually, while there's no way he could have any reference of that conversation between Oscar and Rudy.

Unless Rudy or Oscar told Steve about it later, off screen.... way, way, waayyyyyyy off screen. :lol:
 

Dwight Fry

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Is seeing through the walls a bionic power? :-D
 

LastSurvivor

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I can’t deny that television series from the 70’s and 80’s have certainly remained ingrained in my memory banks. Needless to say, the idea of a fanedit from one of my most fondly remembered shows, The Six Million Dollar Man, certainly set that old “nostalgia” part of my brain ticking – and when it’s a Bionic Bob edit, well, you know you’re in pretty safe hands.

The main bulk of the edit is based on the 1st episode proper once the series was given the green light, “Population:Zero”. It’s a wise choice, as it’s certainly one of the strongest from the first season, with a wonderful eerie "small town" style atmosphere to it. Not only that, but it actually lends itself remarkably well to the way in which Bob wanted to approach this edit, which is to basically make this as the perfect TV pilot to introduce us to the man who is, Steve Austin. This in itself is a blessing, for as much as I like the first TV movie, “The Moon and the Desert”, it really does drag in terms of pacing and once you push aside all the intriguing scenes of Steve’s accident and his process of recovery after becoming the world’s first bionic man, there is little else left to engage the viewer – well, at least this viewer anyway.

By inserting scenes from the first TV movie in the form of flashbacks, CYBORG becomes a much more multi layered version of the Population Zero episode. Of course, there is a real danger of such scenes feeling very random if they’re used too much or at the wrong moment, but one of the advantages by using this particular episode comes in the fact that Steve ends up wearing what appears to be the same space suit which he wore during the ill-fated test flight, resulting in the flashbacks feeling very natural for the most part. A shame therefore that the very last one, between Oscar and Rudy, whereby they discuss the psychological affect which the bionics are having upon Steve, does feel a bit forced. This is due to a) the fact Steve was not present and therefore would have no memory of this and b) because it also involves the shady activities of another villain from a different story which therefore have no relevance to this edit. However, Bob kind of gets away with this because on the flip-side it does work in relation to leading up to the “Lost Adventure” which makes for a very enjoyable bonus feature.

Having started to watch season1 of SMDM recently, one aspect I did miss was the bionic sound effects which I remember so fondly. I didn’t even realise that they simply didn’t exist in the first season! So, I was very relieved to see Bob has inserted these at every “bionic super feat” opportunity (Even if I think I worried my girlfriend, as every time it happened I appeared to have the smile of a 8 year old plastered across my face!). The added music also works very well – to the point where it’s hard to tell when it’s new and when it’s part of the original source. I also liked the POV zoom effect for Steve's bionic-eye - very nicely done.

On the technical side, Bob's editing is nicely executed, particularly the way in which the flashbacks are utilised (nice use of the heartbeat sound effect and they feel very much like they come from the time period in which the programme was originally produced). Picture quality is fine throughout for a programme of this age and I couldn't really notice any interlacing on my TV, something which I know he had issues with when making the edit. As DwightFry mentioned, the aspect ratio appears off a little - it's still 1.33:1 (or 4.3 if you prefer) in theory, but it does have little black bars at the top and bottom which give the impression of something in the region of 1.66:1. if you were to zoom the picture up. But hey, it's not a real big deal and after about 5 minutes I'd forgotten about it.

Now, as much as I'm a fan of all BionicBob edits, the audio side of the equation can occasionally fall a little short. Certainly it's a side of fanediting which has got better for Bob on each edit and I'm glad to report that CYBORG continues the upward trend of smooth transitions and sound levels which for the most part appear just about right. Good job mate ;)

All in all then, CYBORG is everything I wanted this edit to be. It genuinely has become the ultimate Six Million Dollar Man pilot for me and to anyone who was coming to the series for the first time, I would quite honestly show this over any of the three TV movies. A well deserved 9/10.

Oh, and as for the news that there will be at least one more SMDM edit to come? All I can say is you've made me so excited that I want to go on ebay and purchase the "Bionic Transport and Repair Station" - my favourite toy which I used to have when I was about 5 or 6! Thank you Bob :)
 

bionicbob

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"Bionic Transport and Repair Station"

That was an awesome toy! Oscar's suitcase computer thingee was neat too. I remember when I got my SIX MILLION DOLLAR MAN action figure! It was so cool!!!

Check this guy out!


THANK YOU FOR THE WONDERFUL REVIEW L.S.!!!!

And yes, I do have more Bioinic edits planned.

If all works out, look for sometime in the future....

CYBORG II: Maskatron
CYBORG III: The Bionic Woman
CYBORG IV: The Sasquatch Encounter
CYBORG V: Attack of the Fembots

Yep, like George Lucas, I have a plan! :p
Stay tuned!:)
 

Dwight Fry

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bionicbob said:
Yep, like George Lucas, I have a plan! :p
And like George Lucas, you've had it from the very beginning! :lol:
 

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I get a "file not found" for part 18. :/ All of the others are available/downloaded now.
 

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I had no troubles. All downloaded and ready to roll! Sadly no time to watch tonight, but will do so and post a review soon. Looking forward to it!
 

bionicbob

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emphatic said:
I get a "file not found" for part 18. :/ All of the others are available/downloaded now.

Did a check, all files present and working.

Mediafire seems to be like Rapidshare, sometimes files seem to go "missing" and then "return". I know for a fact two people who downloaded the edit yesterday with no issues. I would just be patient. If the trouble continues, PM me I can always reupload the one missing part.:)
 

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Thank you Bionicbob for this Fanedit, I enjoyed the retelling of Steve Austin and thought the Lost Mission was great. Also appreciate the help you provided in enabling me to acquire this Edit.

Eric
 

bionicbob

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Eric Gorman said:
Thank you Bionicbob for this Fanedit, I enjoyed the retelling of Steve Austin and thought the Lost Mission was great. Also appreciate the help you provided in enabling me to acquire this Edit.

Eric

You are welcome.
Always happy to share the adventures of the World's GREATEST SUPERHERO!!!!:)
 
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