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Monday, July 06, 2009


The Bionic Woman: Doomsday is Tomorrow/The Martians are Coming,
The Martians are Coming
Music by Joe Harnell JHCD 28 (US)
31 Tracks 66:55 mins

The second recent release from features the composer's scores for two episodes from the original Bionic Woman TV series, starring Lindsay Wagner.
Doomsday is Tomorrow was a two-parter from the second season of the show, and features Lew Ayres as an aging scientist holding the world to ransom with his doomsday device. Harnell received some criticism for his theme to V, which was very reminiscent of Bernard Herrmann's North By Northwest and, with this score he's at it again, using Richard Strauss' "Also Sprach Zarathustra," made famous by its use in Kubrick's 2001, but in this case, played backwards, as a kind of in-joke, connecting 2001's Hal with Alex 7000, another sentient computer featured in the episode. Film music fans may also recognise a quote of Ernest Gold's Exodus theme in a scene involving David Opatoshu, who starred in that film. The score for this episode features a kind of meandering action theme early on; a fateful martial drumming motif also featuring strongly. The music becomes increasingly tense as it proceeds, with the aforementioned motif taking on a dirge-like quality in the lengthy penultimate track of the score proper.
The final season of the show included the episode The Martians are Coming, The Martians are Coming, which features what at first appears to be an alien abduction, but turns out to be a clever hoax. Although Craig Huxley's Blaster Beam was made famous by Jerry Goldsmith with his use of it in Star Trek: The Motion Picture, Harnell actually beat him to the punch, using it on this episode to represent the "UFO." Harnell's score for the episode, as one would expect, includes its share of otherworldly music, enhanced by electronics, and the aforementioned Blaster Beam, alongside the usual live instrumental, often drum kit-driven combo which was a staple of the show. There is much intrigue, and of course Jamie eventually leaps into action, accompanied by quotes of the familiar motif for the bionic powers she possesses, and a nice warm wrap-up. A suite of alternate cues follows.
Closing the disc are a handful of music effects tracks, for those that like that sort of thing.
I am indebted to Mike Joffe's accompanying notes on the episodes represented, their scores and the composer himself for the background info to this review.
Go to for more info, samples and of course to order your copy.


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