Season 2 Episode 13

Soft Touch

Aired Sunday 9:00 PM Jan 19, 1987 on ABC

Episode Fan Reviews (3)

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out of 10
67 votes
  • The weakest episode to date.

    This episode has a certain energy to it, mainly because of Teri Hatcher's notable efforts in the role of Penny Parker, and I actually enjoyed the episode when I first watched it. However, it does not hold up well at all, offering an endless litany of silly dialogue, a weak plot, an even dumber subplot with the improbable love affair between Penny and Soviet defector Yuri Dimitri, and an anti-climactic thwarted assassination attempt at the end. The only reason MacGyver even stumbled upon the criminal plot was because Penny inadvertantly fell into it TWICE, first by delivering a singing telegram to the wrong house and then by seeing one of the men on a TV news broadcast where she identified him as involved. Wisecracking hit men Vince Schiavelli and Robert Donner did the best they could with the material they were presented, but the script hobbled their efforts too badly. Not a total disaster, but certainly weak by pre-seventh season MacGyer standards.

    Curiously, this weak episode generated boffo ratings. "Family Matter" the week before perked up to an impressive 16.1 and "Soft Touch" managed to best it with a 16.7. The series always performed in the clutch, and even though the football interference was no longer a factor, MacGyver was now up against three top-20 shows in CBS' "Kate and Allie" and "My Sister Sam" and NBC's "ALF". For MacGyver to grow its audience in the face of such brutal competition is virtually unprecedented.