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Cyber-C.H.I.C. Reviews

A gag-filled sci-fi parody that has the pacing of a vaudeville skit, this direct-to-video mix of POLICE ACADEMY (1984) and ROBOCOP (1987) stars Playboy playmate Kathy Shower (who also served as associate producer). Mild-mannered exterminator Harry Truman Hodgkins (Burt Ward) threatens law enforcement officials with a fiendish plot. He has planted 12 nuclear bombs, which will be detonated if he does not receive $1 billion. He also demands that he be allowed to disappear in anonymity, and that girls like him. He's arrested by strict police chief Leslie Morton (Phil Proctor). Despite the protests of crusading newscaster John Kent (Ransom Baker), Morton separates Hodgkins from his nuclear device. In the meantime, scientist Sigmund von Colon (Kip King) creates RoboC.H.I.C., a "Computerized Humanoid Intelligence Clone" (Kathy Shower). The scientist bestows her with super strength, bulletproof skin, x-ray vision, hypersonic hearing, a thought-activated radio transmitter in her head, and a studded black snakeskin mini-ensemble and thigh-high boots. With this equipment in place, she is sent out to fight crime. Decadent mobster Quentin Thalian (Manseful Rivers-Bland) has allied with an inept motorcycle gang to exploit Hodgkins (who has escaped from Morton's custody) by using his nuclear device to extort money from "Governor of Police" O'Hara. RoboC.H.I.C. confronts him, and gets temporarily "killed" by Von Colon's old rival, Dr. Borborygmus (Jack Carter). She soon reactivates, and helps von Colon and Kent disarm the bombs and avert nuclear Armageddon. With its cardboard sets, ROBOC.H.I.C. is hardly a special-effects extravaganza; this may be the first movie where a computerized, thinking car looks like it came from Rent-a-Wreck. Yet the cast is so game, the movie works on its own goofy terms. Former "Batman" boy-wonder Burt Ward is convincing as the pudgy, dweebish Hodgkins; his real-life wife, Tracy Posner, appears in one scene as a motorcycle mama who digs Hodgkins. King makes a delightfully broad scientist, less mad than overly enthusiastic, and Mike Kidman hits just the right tone as the leader of a gang called "Satan's Onions." (It was supposed to be "Satan's Minions," he explains, but somebody goofed up their jackets.) The biggest surprise is Shower, who though saddled with a horrendous wig is actually quite engaging as the childlike living doll who innocently mimics people's gestures and sometimes takes commands too literally. Some of the film's humor is infantile (a TV station's call letters are KAKA), but other, throwaway bits are a bit subtler--the Teutonic von Colon has a coffee mug that bears the legend "You Vant it Vhen?" Shot in Pueblo and Colorado Springs, Colorado, the low-budget film uses real local citizenry in some roles. Jennifer Daly, who is co-credited with Shower in the role of RoboC.H.I.C., presumably served as Shower's body double. (Nudity, sexual situations, adult situations.)