In the movie Aliens, there is a scene where Bishop does his "thing with the knife", showing speed and accuracy that no human would have. In Star Trek:TNG we often see Data entering commands/queries into the computer more quickly than humans could accomplish.

In contrast, one can recall Robot from Lost In Space being fairly awkward (though less so than the Borg). As that linked question implies, many 1950s robots were fairly mechanical and slow.

When did the depiction of androids/robots as faster than humans enter into the film world?

  • FWIW, I'm not sure Bishop did it that much faster than what humans can actually do. This is just the first example I've found, but I've seen faster in the past: youtube.com/watch?v=ZV0qVmZ4DsU – user31178 Sep 17 '18 at 16:16

I don't have literal hard evidence, but my best guess would be Hymie from "Get Smart" (1966). The lovable robo-agent could simulate all human reflexes while being immensely stronger.

If Hymie doesn't fit your needs, I would say Ruk for sure, appearing a few months later on "Star Trek". There's never any sense of "awkward" in Ruk's menacing movements.


Westworld, released 1973, depicted bunches of androids that were nearly indistinguishable from human -- most notably, The Gunfighter (played by Yul Brynner) who was capable of beating most humans in a showdown.


In Fritz Lang's groundbreaking 1927 film, Metropolis, Maria (Brigitte Helm) is depicted as a robot with humanoid skin, and in one scene is shown to dance seductively enough to drive men to distraction -- in fact, she was indistinguishable from human until her skin was destroyed.

  • Is that anything to do with being "faster"? – James from NZ Sep 17 '18 at 18:43
  • If "faster" is the only criterion, see my other answer, Westworld. – Zeiss Ikon Sep 17 '18 at 18:51

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