If you grew up in the '70s, then you were aware of the Six Million Dollar Man and its spinoff series The Bionic Woman. Lee Majors and Lindsey Wagner became household names and with it were there boss Oscar Goldman. Richard Anderson, who played the role on both series simultaneously, passed away on Thursday in his Beverly Hills home at the age of 91.
Anderson provided the voice over for the series opening:
"Gentlemen, we can rebuild him. We have the technology. We have the capability to make the world's first bionic man. Steve Austin will be that man. Better than he was before. Better… Stronger… Faster."
He joined the franchise when it debuted in two TV movies in 1973: The Six Million Dollar Man: Wine, Women and War and The Six Million Dollar Man: The Solid Gold Kidnapping. The series would debut in 1974, and The Bionic Woman premiered in 1976 and the two shows ran concurrently for two years with Anderson and Martin E. Brooks as Dr. Rudy Wells regulars on both shows. He would reprise his role as Goldman three more times in TV movies in 1987, 1989, and 1994.
Anderson has a thriving career outside of the series as well having played in such films as Forbidden Planet (1956), Paths of Glory (1957), The Long Hot Summer (1958), Curse of the Faceless Man (1958), Compulsion (1959), A Gathering of Eagles (1963) and Seven Days In May (1964). He had also turned his attention to television, playing a recurring role on Zorro, Bus Stop and Perry Mason. He played David Jansen's brother-in-law on the Fugitive and a police chief on the Burt Reynolds lead series Dan August and three follow up movies.
After his time as Goldman, Anderson would guest star on shows like Charlie's Angels, Knight Rider and Fantasy Island then recurred as Buck Fallmont on Dynasty. He appeared in to films late in his career, Gettysburgh and The Glass Shield.
Anderson's memoir, Richard Anderson: At Last… A Memoir, from the Golden Years of M-G-M and the Six Million Dollar Man to Now was co-written by Alan Doshna and published in 2015. He had been married twice, the first time to Carol Lee Ladd from 1955 to 1956 and the second time to Katharine Thalberg from 1961 to 1973. He had three daughters with Thalberg: Ashley, Brooke and Deva.
Recently, DC Comics and Dynamite Entertainment did a crossover comic putting the Lynda Carter version of Wonder Woman together with Lindsey Wagner's Bionic Woman. It was written by Andy Mangels, who sent us this comment about Anderson's passing:
"Damn it! Just got word that Richard Anderson, who played Oscar Goldman on The Six Million Dollar Man and The Bionic Woman has passed away today. I was pleased to feature him in my WONDER WOMAN '77 MEETS THE BIONIC WOMAN comic, where the Jewish subtext was made textual, and where Judit Tondora and Roland Pilcz did a great job drawing him!
Rest In Peace, Richard. You were a great boss… and a better pal!"
Here are a couple pages from the comic.