Video: Cars, Computers and Coptermania

On new action shows, the hardware has all the best lines

They never complain. They never forget their lines. They have no agents or egos. They are composed of moving parts, but their parts are rarely moving. They are sex objects who do not object to being handled, symbols of power whose judgments go unquestioned, the most impersonal of actors in the most personal of media. They are the new stars of prime-time network television: machines.

Helicopters, cars and computers dominate such action-adventure shows, as Magnum, P.I., Matt Houston, Trauma Center, Scarecrow and Mrs. King, Cutter to Houston and The Fall Guy. Coptermania...

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