In Review: MacGyver – Scissors

MacGyver and Jack search for Riley, using a microwave and a power strip, after she mysteriously disapears and hacks into the NSA, possibly unleashing World War III.

Synopsis: MacGyver and Jack search for Riley, using a microwave and a power strip, after she mysteriously disapears and hacks into the NSA, possibly unleashing World War III. Also, Bozer goes on his first official mission, and Jack opens up about his history with Riley’s mother, Diane.

Review: Bah Humbug! That pretty much sums up Riley’s feelings about Christmas and that is despite some really irritating pet talks from Bozer and lots of general goodwill with a serving of pastrami.

This whole episode pretty much puts Riley centre stage, which is a little weird consider the show is called ‘MacGyver’. That as a story this is fairly solid and the relationship stuff that comes up about Jack’s relationship with Riley’s mum and the fact that Riley resents Jack for waking away while not entertaining. It was pretty good in that it informed the characters and finally put the tension between the two characters to bed.

In a nutshell Riley is forced to go rogue in order to save her mums life because she is being threatened by a conglomerate of hackers. To that end Riley takes steps in order to make sure she is able to undo what she is made to do once she is reunited with Mac and the Gang.

As far as MacGyverisms go. There’s a tone happening in this. The highlight for me being when Mac creates a makeshift satellite dish in order stop a stray missile from impacting over LA.

The episode ends with Riley celebrating Christmas with Mac and the team and her mum sort of hinting to Jack that she’d be opening to getting back together again. All quite soapy really and kind of a yawnfest.

This series on the whole doesn’t feel like ‘MacGyver’ and never will. It lacks the pulp sensibility of the classic show and given that it is very much an ensemble cast. It might as well be Team MacGyver.

I’ll admit. The character of Riley is likeable and easy on the eyes for the boys and such. But her character is very much a cliche in terms of modern television and not really needed for the show. If this were a true ‘MacGyver’ series. It would be Mac that would be doing the computer hacking as well as hacking pretty much everything else to boot.

Also in the scene where Mac is positioning the makeshift Satellite Dish in order to help prevent the missiles. He innocently asks Riley which way is West. Really. He’s bright enough to have put together a Satellite Disk out of odds and ends and he doesn’t know which way to point it? That’s not very MacGyver.

Whoever wrote this shit. Really needs to do their homework. I suggest they study a compass and take up orienteering.

MacGyver - Scissors
  • The Good: The sequence where Mac builds a Satellite Dish
  • The Bad: That MacGyver who is pretty much a genius doesn't know which way West is. Also this episode was way to soap opera.
  • Story
  • Acting
  • Incidental Music

Ian Cullen is the founder of and has been a fan of science fiction and fantasy from birth. In the past few years he has written for 'Star Trek' Magazine as well as interviewed numerous comics writers, television producers and actors for the SFP-NOW podcast at: When he is not writing for Ian enjoys playing his guitar, studying music, watching movies and reading his comics. Ian is both the founder and owner of You can contact ian at:
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