MacGyver

Season 1 Episode 8

Hellfire

4
Aired Sunday 9:00 PM Nov 27, 1985 on ABC
7.3
out of 10
User Rating
85 votes
5

EPISODE REVIEWS
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Episode Summary

EDIT
During a trip to visit friends, an accident starts a fire in an oil well owned by MacGyver's friends.

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • Lame, lame

    2.0
    As much as I like MacGyver, this episode was bad, bad, bad. Poor acting, directing, and editing, not to mention the script and technical failures.
  • Lightbulb....

    1.0
    Theres no way that the would string lights like that near a real oil rig...

    So dumb.... besides that it was
  • Mac visits some old friends who are drilling for oil, but an out of control well fire puts the whole place in danger. Mac must use all of his resources to save the day. A decent enough plot, but this one didn't pull me in as much as some episodes...moreless

    8.0
    'Hellfire' is actually a pretty good first season episode of 'MacGyver', and I quite like the plot. But for some reason (maybe I just wasn't in the mood when I came to watch it on DVD), it just didn't pull me in as much as some of the other episodes do.



    I can't put my finger on it exactly. Nana Visitor is every bit as annoying as she would often go on to be in 'Star Trek: Deep Space Nine', and the rest of the guest cast (well, all two of them) don't exactly give career-defining performances either.



    There are some great plot moments, securing boxes of dynamite from rickety old hut at an abandoned strip mine et al; and plot-wise at least, there is nothing really wrong with the episode.



    ...But parts of it – such as Mac and Bill's embarrassing fight near the climax over who will perform the daredevil attempt to stop the out of control fire – are pretty hard to watch and take seriously. I dunno, was it down to the director not having his finger on the pulse with this one? Something just felt to be slightly off.

    Part of the blame (if that's not too harsh) certainly has to go to the guest cast, as to be honest I couldn't really care what happened to them; and I just didn't find Mac and Bill's "pals from the old days who have seen many adventures" routine that believable.



    This isn't really a bad episode at all, but I just feel that it could have been a classic. But for its good points, including some suspenseful moments, I'll give it a slightly generous 8 out of 10.moreless
  • Well made.

    10
    There are plenty of possibilities for Macgyver to deal with, the writers can always come up with good stories. Each episode is always fun to watch. I really enjoyed watching this episode. This time, the enemy are TNT dynamites. It's a nasty thing that explode, but to an expert like macgyver, he uses it as a tool to solve a complicated problem. He always come up with something, he does it again in this episode. This is one cool episode, at the end you'll be satisfied, it's really entertaining, fun to watch, it's a perfect show for a family to see.moreless
  • Great pyrotechnics and an original storyline help this episode overcome its flaws.

    9.1
    Struggling ABC tested out MacGyver on Wednesday night (which would be its new night two months later) in late November 1985 with this episode. Despite earning my dubious honor of worst-acted MacGyver episode of all-time (Bill was over-the-top....and MacGyver acted out of character in an effort to keep up with him), the original premise, awesome pyrotechnics, and white-knuckle suspense saved this episode and help make for a very enjoyable hour. Granted, the premise of an abandoned strip mine leaving shelves full of dynamite after its closure is hokey even by MacGyver standards, but the outstanding execution of the suspenseful dynamite retrieval scenes should help just about anybody suspend their disbelief. It's too bad the writers and producers had fleshed out the character a little better in the early first season because a little more polish could have elevated this episode to one of the series' all-time best. As it stands, it was still an excellent hour and pivotal in that it helped MacGyver move to Wednesday nights, the timeslot that would save the series from being a one-season wonder.moreless
Cooper Huckabee

Cooper Huckabee

Bill Farren

Guest Star

Nana Visitor

Nana Visitor

Laura Farren

Guest Star

Rudy Ramos

Rudy Ramos

Pete Torgut

Guest Star

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

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  • TRIVIA (4)

    • When MacGyver and Bill are driving the truck to the abandoned strip mine to look for dynamite, Mac is wearing sunglasses. Then suddenly, in close-up shots, the sunglasses are gone. As the truck arrives at the mine and Mac gets out, he suddenly has the sunglasses back on again.

    • In the scene where MacGyver and Bill are entering the shack to get the dynamite boxes, right after Bill steps off the board onto the shack's floor, there's a shot of him walking towards the dynamite boxes. The gloved hand of one of the production crew clearly comes into the right side of the shot to steady a dynamite box.

    • MacGyver's hands are shown to be dirty in long shots, but clean in close-ups, when he works on the truck engine.

    • The bit where MacGyver fixes the fuse box by wrapping the burnt-out fuse with a chewing gum wrapper does actually work as confirmed by Mythbusters.

  • QUOTES (17)

    • MacGyver: (needing to straight Torgut's broken leg) Of course, you know we're going to have to give it a pretty good yank to straighten it, get a splint on it.
      Torgut: Well, what are you waiting, Doc? Let's do it!
      MacGyver: Oh, I was just wondering...
      Torgut: Do you have any doubts you can do it?
      MacGyver: Oh, no, that's no problem. It has to do with Curie's Law.
      Torgut: Curie's what? Curie's Law?
      MacGyver: Yeah. You know, the one that say the magnetic susceptibility of a paramagnetic substance is inversely proportional to the absolute temperature. You know.
      Torgut: The magnetic susceptibility of the...
      (MacGyver abruptly straightens his broken leg)
      MacGyver: On the other hand... don't think about it.
      Torgut: Oh... whew. You're real slick, MacGyver.
      MacGyver: Well, naked dancing girls might have been a little better, but... you know.

    • Bill: (carrying unstable dynamite) You ever drop one of these?
      MacGyver: Not recently. You?
      Bill: Well, in Tulsa, Oklahoma, a guy once bet me that I couldn't balance a stick of burning dynamite on my forehead.
      MacGyver: Yeah, what happened?
      Bill: Blew my head off.

    • MacGyver: Uh, wait a minute, here.
      Bill: He's thinking. I can hear the gears grinding away.

    • MacGyver: Well, I guess I'm going to have to entertain a couple of theories a few of my buddies came up with a while ago. Archimedes and Euclid, you may have heard of them.

    • MacGyver: I've been wanting to take a nice long vacation, a little rest and relaxation. Spend some time with friends, party down.

    • Bill: You've always got an answer.
      MacGyver: It doesn't always work.

    • Bill: You are crazy! I mean, certifiable!
      MacGyver: Yeah? What does that make you?

    • Bill: You know, back in the 1920s, they used to truck nitro out to the fields.
      MacGyver: Yeah?
      Bill: Yeah.
      MacGyver: They used to call that the suicide run, didn't they?
      Bill: You scared?
      MacGyver: You bet.
      Bill: Me, too. Ain't it great?
      MacGyver: Yeah...

    • Bill: Pure nitro—that stuff'll go off if you sneeze.
      MacGyver: Let's try not to sneeze.

    • MacGyver: You know this building is coming down with the first strong wind?
      Bill: Hey, you want to live forever?
      MacGyver: Thinking about it.

    • MacGyver: Maybe we oughta consider puttin' it out ourselves.
      Bill: With what?
      MacGyver: Know-how. Ingenuity… Dynamite wouldn't hurt.

    • Laura: I asked him to make a choice: hellfighting . . . or us.
      MacGyver: He chose right.

    • MacGyver: [I am] a man of many, many, many, many, many, many talents.

    • MacGyver: Some people say that there are no more frontiers left for us to conquer. But then again, some people still go out into the wilderness in search of their dream.

    • MacGyver: You got a spare fuse?
      Laura: You're holding it.

    • Bill: You can forget about the new truck. I'll take a dozen of those ballpoint pens.

    • MacGyver: This road would definitely be an E ride at Disneyland.

  • NOTES (2)

  • ALLUSIONS (0)

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