“We can rebuild him. We have the technology.”

If this familiar phrase gets your adrenaline going then I have a feeling anything I’m going to say below this paragraph will be mostly irrelevant. The only thing you need to know is that The Six Million Dollar Man is finally available in North America – and not only is it available, but it’s packaged in a “Complete” box set.

Unlike some “complete” collections that include most episodes of a television series or all the episodes but not the pilot, this Time Life collection contains literally everything ever made involving the Six Million Dollar Man. To be specific, that’s 40 DVDs total, including all 100 original, unedited television episodes, all three pilot TV movies, all three made-for-TV reunion movies, and a huge collection of special features, including audio commentaries, mini-biographies, and featurettes. That’s over 30 hours of bonus features and almost five solid days of episodes and movies. I’ve reviewed a few box sets before but this one is by far the most lengthy.

Now, if you’re a little more of a normal fan that still wants to know the quality details of a box set before purchasing it, keep reading. First the physical description: the 40 DVDs are packaged in six individual cases – five of them twice as thick as a standard DVD case and one (the bonus features) the standard size. Each case includes a DVD insert with a brief description of the episodes on each disc, including original air date. The case itself is made of sturdy paperboard-esque material and features raised mechanical drawings around the entire surface, along with a few images from the show.  In the center of the cover of the case is a lenticular (a word I’ve never heard before) image of Steve Austin in his red track suit running towards you. Overall, it’s a visibly impressive set and the voicebox inside the pack that plays the narration from the opening of the show is a nice addition.

If you’re already a fan of Steve Austin and The Six Million Dollar Man, you’re probably more concerned with how the film transfer and audio quality is rather than how good the show is.  Let me ease any concerns you might have – the audio and video quality are superb. Now, they’re obviously not HD by any means, but there’s a crispness to the images here that I’m pretty sure didn’t come through on your 1975 television set. As for the show itself, by most accounts it’s cheesy ’70s TV with nothing raising it too far beyond that, but the mix of sci-fi, drama, and action has stuck with audiences for decades now.  In the pilot movie, as the doctor prepares Austin for the initial operation on his arm, he brings Austin around to the concept by assuring him that “you’ll be able to hold a woman in your arms and in no way will any of her human senses be able to tell which arm you’ve been given.” Classic.

Similarly, the action sequences and techno-speak are humorously dated. Watching these episodes is like stepping into a television time machine. Thankfully, this time machine is plenty entertaining… and for those that grew up watching Lee Majors strut his stuff as the first cyborg, a very welcome trip down memory lane. Unlike collections rushed to print unfinished, Time Life took the time to get this one right.

Zach’s Rating: Collection: A- Series: B-
Perfect For: Who do you think? The Steve Austin fan who’s been waiting years for this collection
Stay Away if: You’d be happy with a few episodes

To purchase The Six Million Dollar Man: The Complete Collection, visit Time Life

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