"The Six Million Dollar Man started off as a novel by [Martin Caidin] called Cyborg, but over the course of its development from book to movie to TV show, it not only changed name, it changed tone.
The book is essentially a thriller that tries to ground itself in reality as much as possible to make Steve Austin a super-spy. Sure he has a bionics left arm (yes, bionics in the book, not bionic), bionics legs and bionics eye. But he can't feel anything in his bionics limbs and his bionics eye won't let him see, only take pictures. And sure, he's very strong, but when he kicks a golf ball, that bionics toe of his still gets crushed by the impact.
It was bionics, but still tried to be relatively aware of the laws of physics and what was practical."
(The Medium is Not Enough TV blog, 9 July 2010)
"Steve Austin was a former astronaut who was severely injured when his experimental plane crashed. He lost his legs, his right arm and his left eye in the crash, and his life was only saved by extensive bionic surgery, performed at the behest of the U.S. government, who were looking for a test subject for the new technology. Now equipped with state of the art mechanical replacements for his missing appendages, he works as a special operative for The Office of Scientific Intelligence (OSI), a covert branch of the US government."
[The TV movie (1973) and Television series were adapted from Martin Caidin's novel titled Cyborg (first published in 1972). The programme did much to popularise the notion of mechanical augmentation. The opening sequence featured footage from pilot Bruce Peterson's 1967 real-life accident flying NASA's Northrop M2-F2 aeroplane.
Download series theme tune (mp3) at WavCentral.]