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"Return of the Robot Maker"

(Original air date 01/26/75)


Oscar is substituted by a robot, whose inventor is aiming to kill Steve


Story: Del Reisman and Mark Frost

Teleplay: Mark Frost

Director: Phil Bondelli

The infamous robot maker, Dr. Jeffrey Dolenz (Henry Jones) returns to his mobile lab after getting the facial mask for his new robot. He fixes it in place and admires his work, a perfect replica of Oscar Goldman.

He goes to the OSI under an assumed name and asks the secretary (Sarah Simmons) to see Oscar about a project he would like to submit for his approval. Oscar welcomes the stranger in, whose face seems familiar. Dolenz takes out a tranquilizer gun and shoots Oscar in the back before he has time to alert security. Outside waiting on a scaffolding under the guise of window washers, two men get inside the office with the robot and help Dolenz switch the real Oscar with the fake, who dons his jacket and takes his place behind the desk. As soon as Dolenz is out the door, the robot contacts the secretary and asks for the 'Brahmin' file.


Meanwhile, Steve gets a visit from his inventor friend Barney Barnes (Troy Melton) in the gym where he is doing his routine exercises. Barney shows Steve his latest gadgets and begs him to convince Oscar to give the go ahead for a trial test, but Steve believes he should be the one to ask him.

Later, Steve enters Oscar's office just as the robot is transmitting to Dolenz the information contained in the Brahmin file through his electronic eyes. Steve tells Oscar to hurry if they want to make their double date.

In Dolenz's lab, Oscar regains consciousness with small electrodes plastered over his forehead. Both men watch the unfolding scene through the robot's eyes on a monitor. Oscar explains to the good doctor that Steve is bound to discover the substitution and will thus thwart his plan to steal the Brahmin project blueprints. Dolenz insists that his robot is a perfect replica and that the flaws have long since been addressed. In order for his robot to gain free access to the Brahmin complex, he requires the special clearance code. He therefore activates the electrodes implanted in Oscar's brain to retrieve that information.


At the restaurant with Steve, on a double date with Amy (Iris Edwards) and Denise (Jean Lee Brooks), the robot gets a phone call from Dolenz instructing him to proceed with the plan. He beckons Steve over and starts exposing the matter at hand. He pretends to have given his consent to the Ministry of Defense to have Steve try to infiltrate Fort McAlister in Virginia where the Brahmin project is being developed, after their computer exposed a flaw in their security system. The compound is well protected against air and ground raids, but apparently one bionic man could succeed in penetrating the complex. Steve is convinced the computer gave a false diagnostic but Oscar nevertheless compels him to do the job. Steve agrees once he's given the assurance that the canons will fire blanks and that the land mines will be made of plaster during the simulated assault.

The next day before leaving on his assignment, Steve invites Barney to describe his new gadgets to Oscar, but the man hesitates. Steve jumps in and proposes to Oscar to test Barney's inventions during the simulation. Dolenz orders his robot to agree. To show his gratitude to Steve, Barney offers him a radio-transmitter pen to keep in touch during his mission.


Following a quick breakfast at a road-side diner, Oscar and Steve arrive at the facilities. After giving Steve last-minute directions and synchronizing watches, the robot leaves him to his task while he drives inside the complex. Albeit simulated, Steve is nonetheless uneasy about the raid.

Back at his mobile lab, Dolenz informs Oscar that he has no other choice but to kill Steve Austin for he's the only human so far able to identify his robots.

Inside the complex, the robot meets with General Stacey (Ben Hammer) who boasts about the highly-sophisticated security system and assures him that the project's blueprints are safely tucked inside and iron-clad safe.


Outside, Steve jumps over the fence and as he proceeds to the main security building, he triggers the alarm. While Steve has everyone on alert, the robot sneaks inside the safe to transmits the top secret data to his boss back at his lab. Minutes later, he exits the safe just as Steve is killed. So far the bionic man had been successful at dodging the live ammunitions and jumping over exploding land mines, but one surprise machine gun had riddled his chest with bullets. One security camera zooms in on the corpse and Oscar witnesses his friend's death through the eyes of his alter ego.


Steve survives the shooting thanks to Barney's bullet proof vest. He zooms in on Oscar's car driving out of the complex and follows it to an abandoned warehouse. The robot enters Dolenz's mobile lab, inside which both Oscars meet face to face. With Colonel Austin's death, Dolenz expects to have his robot impersonate Oscar at the OSI on a permanent basis once he gets rid of the real McCoy.


All three step outside where Steve spots the two Oscars. He zooms in on both faces and notes a glaring dissimilarity. He lunges at the robot and both engage in a bionic fight before Steve hits the robot's central nervous system behind the neck and disables him.


As Dolenz is handcuffed and taken away, Steve assures him that despite everything, they intend to give his robot a proper funeral. Oscar is puzzled as to how Steve was able to differentiate the two. Easy: a robot doesn't perspire when he's anxious.


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