Thursday, June 20, 2013

Wonder Woman 3.5: Disco Devil

Airdate: 10/20/78

A nuclear engineer, after visiting DC discothèque, can’t remember a crucial code for stopping the detonation of a nuclear test bomb (fortunately Wonder Woman is there). The IADC suspects individuals with the power to telepathically steal information from people’s memory banks; one of whom, a luckless, socially introverted man named Dell Franklin, helps Diana track down the culprits: a “disco devil” named Nick Moreno with the same powers, and a woman named Angie, who runs the dance club with the intent of stealing classified info from government agents. After a series of break-ins, kidnappings and chases, it all comes down to the big silver ball, where Dell and his fellow mind-stealer cancel out each other’s powers, and all secrets are safe and sound.

Good story but oh-so-obviously shoehorned into a disco setting, a big deal atthe time but having nothing to do with mental telepathy (the disco dancer’s last name is Moreno, not - wink-wink, Manero, and the lead female is Angie, who also bears more than a slight resemblance to the titular Donna Pescow character). But harvesting current trends aside, it’s a clever conceit, and tautly executed. Look fast for Russell Johnson (Gilligan’s Professor) as an army colonel, and Wolfman Jack playing a… gasp… disco DJ (Wonder Woman gets to disarm him at the end, but with no joke to go with).

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