One of these days Judge David Johnson is going to blow his fingers off trying to build a bomb out of Clorox and snot.
Our reviews of Fan Favorites: The Best of MacGyver (published March 4th, 2012), MacGyver: The Complete First Season (published February 23rd, 2005), MacGyver: The Complete Second Season (published July 6th, 2005), MacGyver: The Complete Third Season (published September 6th, 2005), MacGyver: The Complete Fourth Season (published December 6th, 2005), MacGyver: The Complete Fifth Season (published March 14th, 2006), MacGyver: The Complete Final Season (published November 24th, 2006), and MacGyver: The TV Movies (published June 18th, 2010) are also available.
Braver than most—smarter than the rest.
MacGyver (Richard Dean Anderson) has trimmed his hair, but you still don't want to be a corrupt white guy when he's on the prowl.
Facts of the Case
MacGyver vs. The A-Team
Mine eyes have seen the glory
And now the air is filled
The rules have been laid out
The ref blows the whistle
But now it's time to quit
Plus there's a big-ass flamethrower
Ahead the menace rushes,
MacGyver holds his ground
When the smoke finally clears,
"Mac, what just happened?"
"But don't you hate guns,
We're approaching the end, kids. This penultimate season of TV's greatest and most cunning adult Boy Scout brings us 21 adventures of crime-fighting, ecosystem defending and glaucoma battling—plus a clip show! In addition, we get another dose of Zito, the deranged Hannibal Lecter poseur, a second hallucinatory visit to the Old West and the ever-reliable Murdoc (Michael Des Barres), Mac's prime nemesis who is invulnerable to fire, explosions, flying leaps off of mountains and dialogue restraint. The episodes, staggered over six discs in the usual no-frills presentation (at least we have slim cases and no dual-sided crap) are as follows:
If you've been following at home, I've reviewed these MacGyver sets from Season 2 on. Back in the day I was a mega-fan, dedicating my allotted one hour of nightly TV viewing time to the adventures of Mac and Pete (Dana Elcar) and the omnipresent Phoenix Foundation. Watching all these seasons sequentially in a relatively short period of time has revealed interesting ebbs and flows within the show's creative life-span. The trend I found was this: as Richard Dean Anderson's mullet expanded in length and coolness, the MacGyver episodes grew more outlandish. While not the least bit scientific—and no doubt sneered at by MacGyver himself if he, you know, existed—this data-gathering held a little bit of truth. Look at last season, where the mullet was truly unleashed, and MacGyver was searching for the Holy Grail, shooting bad guys with lasers, teaming up with his arch-enemy Murdoc to take on the Homicide International Trust (H.I.T.), thwarting multiple terrorist plots, confronting a schizophrenic and leaving a surprising number of corpses in his wake. Crazy @#$%. As we transition to this season, we find MacGyver is sporting a more conservative hairdo. How does the Mullet Theory of Narrative Progression play out now? Quite well, actually.
What struck me most about this season was how much it reminded me of earlier, more subdued seasons. The edgier stuff has been reduced, with the majority of the episodes falling in the "after school special" spectrum. My favorites:
• "Tough Boys"
• "Lesson in Evil"
• "Eye of Osiris"
• "Strictly Business"
• "Humanity," forces Mac to befriend a hardened Romanian soldier.
Beyond those shows, not much else clicked with me. Throughout the season MacGyver battles land developers ("The Wasteland"), an electric company trying to screw over Native Americans ("Trail of Tears," gag), teen alcoholism ("Twenty Questions"), homeless persecution ("There But for the Grace"), spousal abuse ("Jerico Games"), corrupt growers using too much pesticide ("Bitter Harvest"), even fake extraterrestrials ("The Visitor"). I guess what bugged me the most about this season was the need for MacGyver to teach us lessons all the time. I get that's part of the Boy Scout routine and all, but sometimes a brother just wants to see some action. Where are the terrorists?!? I ribbed last season for its over-the-top flair, but after this milquetoast helping, I wish some of that edge had crept into the writer's stable. It may be ludicrous, but it was entertaining, unlike a lot of these shows which I found harmless and lame.
Before I go, I have to mention this: more than any other season, this one featured some of the weakest MacGyver inventions. If any segment of the show displayed real creative starvation it was this. A gallery of the lowlights:
Faced with a bad guy with an Uzi, MacGyver opts not to wait for the mad gunner to run out of ammo, but instead, thread a fire-hose through a ladder and blast the dude in the face with water. Hey, it worked.
Mac and his new Romanian soldier pal are walking through the woods at gunpoint. The Romanian offers to blow them all to kingdom come with a grenade, but MacGyver decides to toss this fishing pole thing into the grass and yank on the line to distract the moronic guards who are too busy admiring the foliage to notice he threw a fishing pole thing into the grass.
When a mob boss forces his way into the house MacGyver and his two senior citizen friends are trying to protect, Mac unleashes the dreaded Reverse Vacuum Cleaner Tomato Bisque Spewer, from which no man can escape.
With one season to go, I'm thinking my beloved series may have peaked a while ago. Season Six did very little for me, as big a fan as I am. Aside from some notable exceptions and the somewhat touching weaving of Dana Elcar's real-life glaucoma condition into the story, I was snoozing.
The accused is ordered to let that magnificent mane hair grow out a bit.
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