Lee Majors – the Six Million Dollar Man himself – turned 75 today. For you young tots, Lee was the ’70s version of Brad Pitt and George Clooney rolled into one, was married to the late Farrah Fawcett for a while, and served as a tremendous model for a young, impressionable Chairman growing into a man.
Majors’ defining role was as test pilot Steve Austin, who survived a freefall after his parachute failed and was rebuilt – with a ton of bionic implants that enhance his speed, strength and senses – by a secret government agency for the relatively low fee of $6 million. He ended up working for said agency as a general bad-ass, probably because his health insurance wouldn’t cover bionic surgery.
So does this mean he’s had a chance to switch out some old parts that were originally installed in his body back in the ’70s? Or is he like a first-generation Chevy Nova that just keeps on running no matter how many miles you log?
When I was little (a few years ago), I mimicked the Six Million Dollar Man’s bionic-fast run – which to our God-given eyeballs looks like he’s running really damn slow. See for yourself.
There’s a lot to analyze in the above clip – Lee’s pornstache, the nerd who obediently stays in the car, Lee’s flopping bell bottoms, the smoking muffler that our bionic hero punts out of the Los Angeles River like the great Ray Guy, etc.
After “The Six Million Dollar Man” spun off into “The Bionic Woman,” Lee eventually revived his TV career with “The Fall Guy,” in which he played an unsung, crimefighting stuntman. Like David Hasselhoff, he was so drunk on his own success that he even sung the show’s theme song, “The Unknown Stuntman,” which an excited Truman has enthusiastically offered as this week’s Hump Day Song of the Week.
(By the way, even if you’re not a child of the ’70s and ’80s, Truman suggests enduring the clip to catch a way-too-brief snippet of a bikini-clad Heather Thomas at 0:54).