Friends, by the time that Automan debuted on December 15th of 1983 – I was more than ready to embrace a buddy cop television series that was obviously inspired by TRON. It appears that much like with the 1982 film that inspired it, the public wasn’t quite ready to embrace such an idea for a TV show – even when it was the brainchild of Glen A. Larson (Battlestar Galactica, Magnum P.I., Knight Rider). Starring Desi Arnaz Jr. (Here’s Lucy) and Chuck Wagner as the titular character, the series attempted to tap into the growing fascination around computers in the home and workplace. Thanks to the Wikipedia we know that it came in #66 for it’s single season run from 1983 until 1984 – tying with The Mississippi as well as Mama’s Family. Nothing against those television shows of course but neither of them featured Cursor as a co-star!
Now I should add that at the arcade we have the complete series, thanks to Shout! Factory, and there have been many times after closing for the night that we have gathered around the snack bar to watch an episode or two. It is most assuredly a product of its time – but like with many ’80s TV shows it is just as much fun to see how many stars showed up in the 13 episodes of the series. Just a few include Delta Burke (Designing Women), Sid Haig (Spider Baby), Toni Nero (Silent Night, Deadly Night), Ola Ray (Thriller), and Billy Drago (The Untouchables).
I felt that you had to know a little about Automan before I shared with you the hilarious Hewlogram short film – written, directed, and even co-starring Aharon Rabinowitz (Plot Device). In addition it stars David Hewlett (Stargate: Atlantis, The Shape of Water) as the holographic character that is ready to take the World by storm. Make sure that you watch through the entire credits for a very nice surprise!