Episode Title: Wonder Woman in Hollywood
Original Airdate: February 16, 1977
Well, we’re a few days late on this week’s episode of Wonder Woman, but we couldn’t possibly ignore our favorite Amazon princess this week. After all, the first big screen movie fronted by the character is hitting theaters in a few days. Which makes this week’s episode a rather appropriate one. It’s the final episode of season one…Wonder Woman in Hollywood.
This time, a Hollywood producer named Bremmer (Harris Yulin) has pitched an idea to General Blankenship for a feature film focusing on four real-life US war heroes. The hook is, those hereos will play themselves, and one of them is Steve Trevor. So, Steve and Diana head to Tinsel Town to be a part of the production.
Meanwhile, on Paradise Island, they are getting ready for a big festival that Diana needs to be at. So, Drusila (once again played by Debra Winger) is dispatched to bring her back. As soon as Dru arrives in Hollywood, trouble starts. As Dru spots Diana at the studio, they also witness an attempted kidnapping of one of the other soldiers, Corporal Aames (Robert Hays). Of course, Wonder Woman intervenes, but this is just the start. That night, another one of the military heroes is lured away by a young starlett and ends up kidnapped. You see, Bremmer is actually a Nazi agent who plans on taking all four war heroes back to Germany to stand trial for war crimes. He also plans on taking over all of the US film industry once Germany has won the war.
The next day, another soldier is kidnapped during the filming of a battle scene. Eventually, Aames is recruited to help capture Trevor when the Naz’s inform him that they are holding his parents. So now, it’s up to Wonder Woman, and Wonder Girl, to rescue the men and stop the Nazi agents. Ultimately, though, Aames must step in and redeem himself, striking the final blow against Bremmer.
Several of the last few episodes have taken Wonder Woman and Steve Trevor out of Washington DC, as does this episode. Being a big movie fan, putting them in a classic era Hollywood setting is kind of fun. I especially got a kick out of the behind-the scenes moments, like where we have Steve piloting just part of an airplane thanks to movie special effects. This same sequence has a strange moment where Diana spots a light tower about to fall on the filmmakers. She spins, turns into Wonder Woman, and bends the wobbly leg back into place. She then changes back and none of this is noticed by anyone in the studio. It was also kind of funny that Drusilla is let into the studio backlot because a guard spots her outfit and figures she must be in a Roman empire movie.
This episode continues one the series’ strong points, namely having a great cast of guest stars. Here we get Harris Yulin, a great character actor who is always good at roles that require him to scowl a lot. I always remember him as the judge from Ghostbusters II. He does a great job of switching back and forth between quick-talking Hollywood big-wig, to the strong German accent. It’s also great to see Robert Hays, who would become much more famous a few years after this playing Ted Stryker in Airplane! Carolyn Jones also returns briefly in this episode as Diana’s mother.
If we’re going to talk about guest stars, though, it’s all about Debra Winger, back as Dru. Once again she completely steals the show. I think she’s even funnier in this episode than she was when she first showed up a few episodes back. She’s clearly been craving ice cream and hot dogs the entire time she was back on Paradise Island. She also gets a lot more to do as far as the action sequence at the end. She has a pretty dramatic bullet deflecting moment. Sadly, this is Debra Winger’s last appearance on the series. I would’ve loved to see her come back for the next two seasons, but her star was very much on the rise. She would be appearing in some big movies within just a few more years after this.
Speaking of lasts, this is the last episode of the first season. This means that major changes are on the way. We’re going to be jumping forward in time a bit with our next adventure. We also bid farewell in this episode to Richard Eastham as General Blankenship and Beatrice Colen as Etta Candy. Since aging the characters 30 years was not in the cards, neither returned for the future seasons.
All in all I’d say that season one ends here on a high note. Next time we’ll give a short summary of the first season of this classic show, before firing up the time machine for season two.