- The Washington Times - Tuesday, June 29, 2004

‘Wonder’ no more

With all the talk about a certain web-spinning hero, it’s easy to forget another comic-book character who once captured the nation’s attention.

Maybe it has something to do with the fact that Lynda Carter would be a wonder woman without a magic lasso or bullet-reflecting bracelets.

The actress’s 1970s-era series, “Wonder Woman,” debuts this week on DVD with all its kitschy appeal intact.

“Wonder Woman: The Complete First Season” features 13 episodes from the 1976-77 season.

Priced at $39.98, the package features the show’s 90-minute pilot, audio commentaries by Miss Carter and executive producer Douglas Cramer, plus a documentary on Wonder Woman, the character.

Watching the show today reminds us both how stunning Miss Carter was (and still is, by the way) and how crude its storytelling techniques were. The latter, unfortunately, burst any nostalgic bubble the series may have generated over the past three decades.

The acting, to be blunt, is a few notches below first-rate, and the plots include such ludicrous scenarios as ones involving trained killer apes and space aliens.

Still, “Wonder Woman” paved the way for future female heroes, from Xena to Jennifer Garner’s Sydney in “Alias.”

Live ‘Poker’ face-off

Every other channel features one gambling show or another, but Fox Sports Net is looking to up the ante by going live with the competition.

The network said it will air the nation’s first live telecast of a professional poker tournament July 14, Reuters News Agency reports.

“The American Poker Championship Live From the Turning Stone Resort and Casino” will feature six players competing for as much as $1 million during the final round of a three-day no-limit hold ‘em tournament at the Oneida Nation-owned casino in Verona, N.Y.

The four-hour telecast will air with a five-minute delay, instituted because of concerns over cheating. The delay also will enable censors to prevent profanity from making it on air should a player be dealt a particularly bad hand.

The cable network, which also airs the “Championship Poker at the Plaza” series on Sundays, is introducing a new card-reader computer system for the live telecast that it says will make “instantaneous on-screen card identification possible.”

Compiled by Christian Toto from staff and wire reports.

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