CULT FACTION

For all your cult film, tv, cartoon, comic and video game needs

Chuck Wagner

Chuck Wagner played Automan, the title character of an American science fiction superhero television series produced by Glen A. Larson. It aired for only 12 episodes (although 13 were made) on ABC between 1983 and 1984.

Automan (the “Automatic Man”) follows the adventures of a police officer and computer programmer named Walter Nebicher (Desi Arnaz, Jr.), who had created an artificially intelligent crime fighting program that generated a hologram (Chuck Wagner) able to leave the computer world at night and fight crime.

While in the real world, Automan posed as a government agent by the name of “Otto J. Mann.” This was a secret to all except Walter’s close associate, Roxanne Caldwell (Heather McNair).

Nebicher could merge with Automan to become one being, sharing consciousness and skills, while retaining Automan’s invulnerability.

Cursor was his sidekick, a floating, shifting polyhedron which could “draw” and generate physical objects as needed. The most common forms taken were a car (the Auto Car), an airplane, and a helicopter, all of which could defy the laws of physics.

The show also starred Robert Lansing as Lieutenant Jack Curtis and Gerald S. O’Loughlin as Captain of Detectives E. G. Boyd, both Walter’s superiors. Both believed Automan was a friend of Walter’s from the FBI. Captain Boyd, a technophobe who had no use for computers, often held up Lieutenant Curtis as the kind of cop he was convinced was the ideal for police – an ideal to which he believed Walter could never rise.

The Automan costume appeared to glow on screen due to its reflective fabric designed by 3M. The fabric was made up of tiny reflective balls, and it was able to reflect nearly 100 percent of the light shone at it (the technique had been used several years earlier for the Kryptonian costumes in Superman). The costume also had highly polished plates attached to it to provide the holographic appearance.

The Autocar and Autochopper were the most common vehicles created for transport. Each vehicle would appear or disappear as a sequence of wireframes drawn by Cursor, and were black with strips of reflective tape stuck on them. The Autocar was a Lamborghini Countach LP400, which was capable of making 90-degree turns without losing control and overtaking merely by strafing, rather than turning. However, human passengers not properly secured in their seats would often be thrown around inside with the momentum from the sudden position change. The Autochopper was a Bell Jetranger capable of landing anywhere. The show also featured a futuristic airplane and motorcycle, while other episodes featured a distinctive handgun and a guitar.

Another prominent feature of Automan was the ability to “wrap himself” around Walter as a means of protecting him. They would appear as one person, but because Walter was inside Automan, he would inadvertently end up speaking in two voices.

However, Automan’s excessive use of electricity would often mean he would suffer from power shortage during the daytime, so he was rarely active in sunlight.

Wagner (born June 20, 1958) went onto become a successful American actor, director, musical theatre historian and teacher.

 

Related Posts
Yvonne Craig

Yvonne Craig, the actress best known for playing Batgirl in the 1960s Batman TV series, has died at the age of 78. Before Lynda Carter's Wonder Woman, before Joanna Cameron's Read more

Yaphet Kotto – The Alien, Running Man, Bond Villain Actor

Yaphet Kotto, whether you remember him as the worst Bond Villain or a member of the Nostromo crew or as Arnold Schwarzenegger’s running mate in The Running Man, it is Read more

Yancy Butler

Yancy Butler was born in Greenwich Village in Manhattan on 2nd July 1970. Her mother Leslie Vega was a theatre company manager whilst her father Joe Butler was the drummer and vocalist Read more

Wolfgang Reitherman

Wolfgang Reitherman is the definition of an unsung hero. He is not widely known and yet hast directed six of the biggest-grossing, most popular movies of the 1960s and 1970s, not Read more

Wings Hauser

Wings Hauser was born Gerald Dwight Hauser in Hollywood, California on 12th December 1947. The son of director and producer Dwight Hauser. Hauser made his acting debut at age five Read more

Windsor Davies

It is Cult Faction's sad duty to report that acting legend Windsor Davies passed away on Thursday at the age of 88 years old. Davies had retired to France with his Read more

William Zabka

William Zabka was born on October 21st 1965 in New York City; both his parents worked in the film business. His mother Nancy was a business liaison, producer, and production assistant Read more

William Smith

William Smith aka "Big" Bill Smith was born on March 24th 1933 was in Columbia, Missouri. Smith began his acting career at the age of eight when he first appeared on the Read more

William Hartnell

A true hero of cult; best known for being the original Doctor. It may have turned out very different, for the boy known as Billy, if it hadn't been for Read more

Wes Craven

It is Cult Faction's sad duty to report that Wes Craven, the man who created modern horror with the A Nightmare on Elm Street franchise  and then reinvented the genre with the Scream Read more

Werner Herzog

Described by Janet Maslin, the New York Times critic, as the "consummate poet of doom," Herzog is one of cinema's most crusading directors. His personal quest has led him to Read more

Warren Murphy

Cult Faction must sadly report that legendary writer Warren B. Murphy passed away on September 4th 2015 at his home in Virginia Beach, U.S.A. Murphy is most well known for Read more

W. Morgan Sheppard

A veteran stage, screen and voice actor, W. Morgan Sheppard was an accomplished and RADA trained actor whose career spanned 55 years. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dZ4qli_1C48 Born William Morgan Sheppard in London on Read more

Vivean Gray

Cult Faction is sad to report that Vivean Gray aka Mrs Mangel in Australian soap opera Neighbours, has passed away at the age of 92 years old. Gray came from humble Read more

Virginia Hey

Virginia Hey (born 19 June 1952) is an Australian actress, known for her role as Pa'u Zotoh Zhaan on the science fiction TV series Farscape and as the Warrior Woman in Read more

Vincent Schiavelli

Vincent Andrew Schiavelli (November 11, 1948 – December 26, 2005) was an American character actor noted for his work on stage, screen and television, often described as "the man with Read more

Veronica Carlson

Born on 18th September 1944 in Yorkshire, England, Veronica Mary Glazer spent the majority of her childhood with her Military father who was stationed in Germany. In later years she Read more

Vernon Wells

Hero of Cult  Vernon George Wells was born 31st December 1945 in Rushworth, Victoria, Australia and initially popped up on the Cult Faction radar in the 1970's on the television Read more

Val Lehman

Valerie (Val) Kathleen Lehman (née Willis) was born in Western Austrailia on 15th March 1943 and is an Silver Logie award winning Australian actress and director, best known for her role as Read more

Tura Satana

Tura Satana (born Tura Luna Pascual Yamaguchi) was born on July 10th 1938 in Hokkaidō, Japan. Her father was a silent movie actor of Japanese and Filipino descent, and her mother was a Read more

Founded Cult Faction in 2014. Some would describe him as a teacher, writer, dream weaver, and visionary... some would not...

%d bloggers like this: