'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.