Show Type: Police/Sci-Fi

First Telecast: December 15, 1983

Last Telecast: April 2, 1984

Broadcast History:

December 1983-January 1984, Thursday 8:00-9:00 on ABC

March 1984-April 1984, Monday 8:00-9:00 on ABC


Walter Nebicher..... Desi Arnaz, Jr.

Automan..... Chuck Wagner

Lieutenant Jack Curtis..... Robert Lansing

Captain Boyd..... Gerald S. O'Loughlin

Roxanne..... Heather McNair


Computers were becoming part of everyday life, from the checkout counter and the automatic bank teller to home-video games, and Automan tried to make them part of television fantasy as well.

Walter Nebbish - er, Nebicher - was a mousy police computer expert who liked to develop computer games in his spare time. One day, he really blew his circuits: a computer creation called "Automan" jumped right off the screen and started Walter on a career as an international crime fighter.

Since Walter had programmed in everything that Automan knew, this handsome superhero in his sparkling uniform was really Walter's alter ego, but able to do all the things that Walter couldn't. He could walk through walls, make objects appear and disappear, and make beautiful women swoon (Automan's broad smile showed more teeth than an Osmond brother!).

Automan also had lots of friends; practically any computer he ran into would help him out, which was a handy for commandeering elevators and causing security systems to keep their bells quiet. If Walter and his creation got into serious trouble while on a case, Walter could even merge into Automan for a time and evade flying bullets!

As if Automan were not enough, there was also Cursor - the little glowing dot that normally moves around a computer screen to show you where you are. This Cursor followed Automan and Walter, and on their command, would outline a super-fast getaway car or even a tank (which would then miraculously materialize, ready for use).

There were, of course, problems. Automan used so much energy that lights tended to dim around him. He faded away entirely at daybreak, when the city's electrical consumption began to rise, often leaving Walter in some dangerous predicament.

The there was Walter's grumpy, old-fashioned boss, Capt. Boyd, who thought that all the computers were worthless, to say nothing of the people who ran them. Neither he nor Walter's protector on the force, Lt. Curtis, knew about Automan, but Curtis knew that somehow Walter was able to crack cases and he shamelessly used Walter's leads to further his own career.