Robert J. Sawyer

Hugo and Nebula Award-Winning Science Fiction Writer

Six Million Dollar Man: what was actually said

by Rob - September 11th, 2023.
Filed under: Uncategorized. Tagged as: , .

The opening credits for The Six Million Dollar Man were created by the legendary Jack Cole, and they use radio chatter during the crash sequence of the lifting body Steve Austin is operating that was never actually heard in the pilot movie.

There’s been lots of debate online about what the dialog actually says, with one line variously interpreted as:

“Trim selector: emergency.”


“Threat selector: emergency.”

I’ve always heard it as the former. And in the episode of The Six Million Dollar Man called “The Rescue of Athena One,” written by Star Trek‘s D.C. Fontana, there’s different but very similar dialog, and there, you can CLEARLY hear that it’s “trim selector,” not “threat selector,” and the closed captions (admittedly added decades later) are quite clear that the word is “trim” indeed, it’s used twice:

00:18:46,993 –> 00:18:48,324
Okay for pass.

00:18:48,394 –> 00:18:50,294
Correction. Alpha hold is off, Rescue.

00:18:50,363 –> 00:18:51,728
Trim selectors slipping.

00:18:51,797 –> 00:18:52,787
Roger, Houston.

00:18:52,865 –> 00:18:54,196
Going forward on the alternate trim.

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