Season 1 Episode 9

Mad Over Miami

Aired Unknown Mar 24, 1984 on CBS

Episode Fan Reviews (1)

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out of 10
43 votes
  • Dominic is delivering $2m to a corrupt Cuban Colonel to free some prisoners, but the money is snatched by mercenaries. As Hawke goes to help his friend, they find that Archangel is tied up in the whole matter. Good ep, if a bit hard to follow in places...

    This review contains spoilers.

    'Mad Over Miami' is a pretty decent first season episode of the series, and one that I enjoy watching.
    When I was younger, and recorded my off-air copy of this episode (along with the rest of the series) from my local ITV region in the mid-1990s, I enjoyed the story, though for some reason found it a bit hard to follow in places. I don't know why, as it is not *that* complex; I think it might have much been due to the fact that the corrupt Colonel Fernandez (William Marquez) and mercenary leader Sanchez (Ismael Carlo) look so similar that they can be confused. But I dunno, maybe I just wasn't paying enough attention!

    As with several early stories (in particular, see the previous episode, 'Fight Like a Dove'), Archangel is at the centre of much of the trouble, here behind the mercenary army that is operating from one of the tropical islands. Again, I always found this twist a little difficult to fully grasp (I found it hard to work out Archangel's connection with this mercenary group), and it is only watching the episode again all these years later tonight on DVD, at the ripe old age of 33, that I've finally worked out these elements of the plot.

    The episode is directed by David Hemmings, who plays Airwolf's twisted creator Dr. Moffet in the Pilot and the classic second season episode 'Moffett's Ghost'. Although this is Hemmings's sole 'Airwolf' directing stint, he also directed other 1980s favourites, including several 'Magnum, p.i.'s, and a number of episodes of 'The A-Team'.
    Speaking of the Pilot, a number of sequences from this episode were re-edited to be included into the VHS version of the Pilot that was sold in the U.K. and some other countries.

    Be the plot hard to fathom or not, the episode has feel of being lovingly shot, and it is about this point that the full potential of the series feels to be kicking in.
    One thing I certainly must mention, is that haunting in-episode theme. Watch the episode, and you'll know exactly what I mean. After the iconic main theme tune, I would rank this in-episode theme as the best ever musical composition for the series; it is so hauntingly catchy, and would be re-worked into several future episodes (most notably the second season's 'Prisoner of Yesterday').

    I also love the religious overtones that are prominent in many Bellisario shows, and are particularly strong in many first season 'Airwolf' episodes. Marella's line "Only God can create a hurricane" is one of my favourites from the season.

    All-in-all, while I feel that the odd element of the plot could have been made slightly easier to follow, I've always liked 'Mad Over Miami'. It probably wouldn't make my all-time Top 10 favourite episode list, but that's due to the high quality of some of the other entries in the series. I still rank it highly enough to give a strong 9/10.