Thursday, February 14, 2008

Wonder Woman Reviews Episode 3: Fausta, the Nazi Wonder Woman

1942 somewhere in Germany...

Episode 3 starts with yet more Nazis plotting to catch the attention of the Fuehrer Adolph Hitler, but their commanders have other ideas and instead order them to work with the "Nazi Wonder Woman" Fausta Grabbles played by Lynda Day George doing a terrible German accent. Oh well at least she's trying! Fausta is the second and final villain from the Wonder Woman comics to appear in the TV series. First appearing in 1943’s Comic Cavalcade #2 in a story entitled Wanted by Hitler, Dead or Alive she was little more than a pretty AXIS spy but on the TV show she was an Olympics champion who was strong as an OX and quite a snazzy dresser. How snazzy you ask? Well tight black pants, leather boots, silk (I thought silk was scarce during the war?) grey blouse, Nazi arm band, mid length black cape and giant blonde braid wrapped around her head. It's all so over the top it's perfect.

Fausta shows her her Nazi buddies some video footage of Wonder Woman (apparently the Nazis have season 1 on DVD too cause they watch footage straight out of the pilot) and informs them that they will be going after Wonder Woman. Their supperiors think that she is nothing more than American propaganda and want to capture her to see if she has any secret powers they can use to help win the war.

Back in the good old US of A Steve Trevor is working alone late in an empty building which can mean only one thing... he's about to be captured by the enemy. Sure enough Fausta in a bad wig sneaks in and kidnaps him hoping to get Wonder Woman's attention. How does someone exactly sneak into the war department building in the middle of an active war? Don't they post guards outside or just inside the doorway?

In any case Wonder Woman gets wind that Steve has been captured and tracks him down to a non-discript warehouse with lots of empty boxes and random pieces of rope. She beats up a ton of old German dudes then saves Steve while Fausta voyeuristically studies her in yet another bad wig, and an ugly trench coat. Discovering that Wonder Woman's lasso has special powers they decide to capture it for the third Reich and in order to do so comes up with the most elaborate scheme I could possibly imagine! Fausta will impersonate Wonder Woman at a phony War Bonds rally.

So disguising herself she is joined by one of her Nazi companions who also disguises himself as a Col. Edward Brown. Wonder Woman must have gotten wind of the rally cause she shows up at the last minute and the two Wondys have a competition to see who can lift the most. Unfortunately the Nazis get the better of Wonder Woman and she is dropped through a trap door midway through the contest. Wonder Woman is so shocked from the fall that the Nazis are able to remove her belt and lasso then they chloroform her into submission. It's off to the fatherland for her!

Steve who has shown up at the phony rally (there's never been a trap designed that Steve won't fall into, even if it's not designed to ensnare him) with Etta see the Nazis getting away in a car with Wonder Woman. They follow commandeering a taxi..."5th columnists are in that car!" Steve spits at the driver who seems to have no clue what he's talking about. Luckily he gives up the taxi...unluckily they can't catch up with the Nazis before they escape in a small plane with a giant swastika painted on the side. Maybe it’s just me but don’t you think someone might have noticed a giant swastika plane flying over the US? Oh and this brings up the fuel question again! Just how far can a 2 or 3 person plane get before it runs out of fuel? Certainly not from DC to Germany I would imagine.

Steve feeling bad that he couldn’t save Wonder Woman begs General Blakenship for permission to pursue her to Germany but the general says no. Steve won’t take no for an answer and goes rogue to save her. Flying his plane to England he meets up with an old army friend and football buddy Charlie, apparently they played in the Rose Bowl together. Can you imagine Steve who is incapable of most everything trying to play football? And doing it so well his team gets to play in the Rose Bowl? Charlie hooks Steve up with a member of an underground German resistance named Rojak who is played by Lynda George’s husband and sometimes co-star Christopher George.

While Steve is dilly dallying his way into Germany Wonder Woman with her belt the source of strength has been chained up and is being questioned by the Nazis with their really fake German accents. None of the Nazis believe there is any power in Wonder Woman’s belt except Fausta but they will not listen to her. She is after all just a woman. The lead Nazi throws her belt away in frustration but Wonder Woman catches it who regains her strength has a lengthy cat fight with Fausta leaving her tied up and escapes the country...

Of course Steve is still in Germany and Rojak, whom Steve has yet to figure out is actually a Gestapo agent posing as resistance is leading him in circles. Wonder Woman returns back to DC and discovering Steve is still in Germany hops aboard that invisible jet of hers to save him. What does she see in this man?

Wonder Woman finds Steve, tied up in the same non-descript castle she just escaped from, and frees him only to be trapped by the Nazis and Fausta again! It’s very anti-climactic. Wonder Woman appeals to Fausta as a woman, telling her that the Nazis do not appreciate her as a woman and she is not being given the respect she deserves. Wonder Woman seems to hit home and Fausta at the last minute changes sides. Working together they escape their captors and convince Fausta join the resistance before heading home to America.

“Will the General be upset at the way you snuck into Germany?” Wonder Woman asks Steve as they leave Germany.

“Why no Wonder Woman before I snuck out of Gestapo headquarters I got a list of every double agent working for the Nazis” Steve answers a proud grin on his face. Well what do you know Steve actually did something right!

I’m glad to say while not perfect I enjoyed this episode a heck of a lot more than the second. The energy level is back up to the level of the pilot and the actors are really starting to find their characters. Other than that there’s not a whole lot more to say about the episode except it was the last time a comic book villain would be used, oh and this episode had the debut of Wonder Woman’s red white and blue sparkling cape she would wear for formal occasions. Every woman should have a formal cape…even a Wonder Woman.

A solid episode.
3.5 out of 5 stars

TV Totals
8 Nazis
4 bad wigs on Lynda Day George
2 times Steve is saved by Wonder Woman
2 spin changes
1 instance of Etta Candy stuffing her face with food
1 instance of bullets and bracelets
1 cat fight
1 instance of Wonder Woman rope bondage
1 instance of Wonder Woman bondage in chains
1 instance of Wonder Woman being strapped to table


Dean Wormer said...

Not to quibble but I believe the bottom picture is actually from the CBS Wonder Woman set in the 70s and not the ABC Wonder Women set during WW II.

/obligatory nerd observation.
//love that show.

Becca said...

You are indeed correct! I just wanted to have a picture of that cool cape.

I salute you as a nerd god!

Anonymous said...

It is a spectacular cape - difficult to walk in, I imagine, as you'd keep having to fight the urge to do a quick swich, or a flourish, or drape it Dracula-style in front of your eyes.
It'd soon get your friends irritated down the pub: "Yeah, the cape! We KNOW! Enough already with the swishies!"
And you'd know this was nothing but cape envy (by the way, full marks for Steve this week)

Swinebread said...

and then Fausta and Wonder Woman play tie up games when Steve is out of the office right?

Becca said...

For sure! It's simply impossible to walk around in a cape without swishing it about! That's half the fun afterall!

Ah Steve what a bafoon!

Of course! But that's on the super secret episodes you can only get that that bookstore that has the windows blacked out and a triple X over the door.

Anonymous said...

Now you can't go wrong with a Wonder Woman post. BTW thanks for the add.