Revisiting the Adventures of Deidre Hall’s Electra Woman and Dyna Girl
Old school superhero fun: Electra Woman and Dyna Girl
Before Deidre Hall became Days of our Lives’ Dr. Marlena Evans, she made her television mark as a feisty superhero on a mission to rid the world of evil. Soaps.com takes a look back at Diedre Hall’s fun, female-driven superhero show.
Hall started in Electra Woman and Dyna Girl, a Sid and Marty Krofft live-action science fiction children’s television series, that aired in 1976 for two seasons. The short-lived series followed the crime-fighting adventures of two fictional Newsmaker Magazine reporters who in their off-hours, posed as caped crusaders Electra Woman (Deidre Hall) and Dyna Girl (Judy Strangis), her teen sidekick. As reporters at a news magazine, they had access to all breaking crime news and knew when a heavily costumed villain was up to no good.
Electra Woman and Dyna Girl were basically a female version of the 1960’s Batman, complete with zany plots, exaggerated villains, a catchy opening with a radio station style theme song, and even Batman-like phrases with Dyna Girl exclaiming “Electra Wow!” or “Electra Yikes!” The female duo had their own version of the BatComputer – the “CrimeScope” computer. This was managed through ElectraBase which was manned by scientist Frank Heflin (Norman Alden), the eccentric inventor who preferred to stay within the ElectraBase. It was he who built all the dazzling duo’s equipment, including the CrimeScope computer and various technologically enhanced gadgets. Even their outfits were advanced – in a bright flash of light called an Electra-Change, the heroines would suddenly be outfitted in skintight spandex, ready to hop in the ElectraCar, to defeat the latest installment of evil.
Most notable of the show’s gadgets were the bulky, square wristwatch-looking gadgets, called ElectraComs which seemed like ’70s prototype of today’s Apple Smart Watches. They could communicate with others, either by voice or video and had GPS navigation.
Other Electra devices include the Electra-Beam which emitted a focused kinetic beam of energy; the Electra-Degravitate which allowed the heroines to defy gravity; the Electra-Force Shield, a force field used to detain villains; and the unique Electra-Strobe which sped up the wearer’s motions and thoughts 10,000 times faster than normal.
Over the top villains
Featuring elaborate set designs, and villainous characters dressed in zany costumes, the show went all out in displaying their villains as lethal, maniacal characters. Villains included Glitter Rock and Side Man, The Spider-Lady with Leggs and Spinner, and The Pharaoh and Cleopatra (Jane Elliot (Tracy Quartermaine General Hospital). Their names matched their outrageous costumes. Sadly, horror legend, Sid Haig, who portrayed The Genie in two episodes in 1976 passed away September 21, 2019, at the age of 80.
In 1976, in the series finale, the duo was confronted by a villain they encountered earlier in the series, the Pharaoh (Peter Mark Richman) who was out to steal the mystical Coptic Eye. Electra Woman and Dyna Girl located the Pharaoh in a booby-trapped pyramid. The Pharaoh was cloaked in sparkly red and gold garb and had the power to place both Electra Woman and Dyna Girl in a ‘mummified’ spell. But as usual, they prevailed, escaping his clutches. A fitting sendoff to the dynamic heroines.
• The full real names of Electra Woman and Dyna Girl were Lori and Judy, respectively, but their names were never revealed during the show.
• Although said to be a teenager, Judy Strangis, Dyna Girl was only two years younger than Electra Woman, Deidre Hall.