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Computer-Generated Beings

AutomanAutoman - Computer-generated being created by mild-mannered police computer expert, Walter Nebicher on the sci-fi series AUTOMAN/ABC/1983-84.

Initially, Walter designed a program of fact and personality traits which described the ultimate crime fighter. But, when a freak accident occurred (where would sci-fi be without the "freak" accident), the circuits of Walter's computer overloaded and out jumped a shimmering holographic humanoid creation called Automan (Chuck Wagner), who was the embodiment of the perfect crime fighting statistics previously fed into the computer banks. Since Automan was the perfect chose to take a "byte" out of crime," Walter used him to help solve police investigations.

Like all good heroes, Automan had his Achilles heel. Because he relied on the power generated from electrical fields in the surrounding environment, he couldn't function properly in unpopulated areas where power supply was diminished. Automan disappeared in the day but like an electronic Dracula rose at night when city power reserves were more plentiful.

His sidekick was a small dot of pulsing light called Cursor which could electronically draw/create objects such as planes or cars that Automan could utilize during his crime fighting pursuits. When Automan wore street clothes, he called himself "Otto Mann." See also - "Max Headroom"

Opening Narration/Voiceover

Automan (voice-over): This is the story of Walter Nebicher, doing what he likes best: fighting crime in the streets. You see, Walter's a policeman. Unfortunately, the Chief doesn't want Walter on the streets.
Walter: Captain.
The Chief: Get back to your cage boy. Now!
Automan (voice-over): So Walter must fight crime in his own way - in the computer room. That's where he's an expert. Fortunately for me Walter's advanced knowledge of electronics led him to experiment with what is known as a hologram. That's a very fancy word for a three-dimensional picture than when perfected can be made to look real, sound real. As a matter of fact, given enough power, it can even be made to feel real. That's kind of what got me into this work.
Automan: My name is Automan. You must be Walter Nebicher.
Walter: How did you know that?
Automan: It's on the programming you fed into my system. I must say Walter, you're very good. Very good indeed. I look wonderful.
Walter: If you do say so yourself.
Automan: You programmed me to be honest but tell me: Why did you call me Automan?
Walter: It means that you're the world's first truly automatic man. You can do anything because you're not real.
Automan: Oh, but I am. I'm as real as you are, just different. And thanks to you - perfect.
Walter: Nobody's perfect, Automan.
Automan: That's not true Walter. You programmed me to observe other people and do whatever they can do as well as they can do it. Jimmy Conners playing tennis. John Travolta dancing. In fact, on a scale from one to ten, think of me as an ...eleven.
Walter: I've created a monster!
Automan (voice-over): No...what Walter really created was a wonderful force for good. Automan. That's me.

Automan Photo-Gallery

Automan Photo

Automan Photo

Automan Photo

Automan and Walter Police Officer and Walter 1984 Novelization

Automan Photo

Automan Photo

Automan Photo

Automan's Digital Automobile Created by Cursor


Automan Photo


Automan Discharges a bolt of Electricity



Desi Arnaz Jr. as Walter Nebicher
Chuck Wagner as Automan
Robert Lansing as Lt. Jack Curtis
Heather McNair as Roxanne Caldwell
Gerald S. O'Loughlin as Captain E.G. Boyd
William Conrad as Narrator

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