Season 2 Episode 1

The Human Factor

Aired Sunday 9:00 PM Sep 22, 1986 on ABC

Episode Fan Reviews (3)

out of 10
72 votes
  • The second season that was never supposed to happen opens in style.

    Happy as I was that MacGyver returned for a second season in September 1986, I didn't realize what a hornet's nest that ABC was putting the show into by scheduling it for Monday nights, where it faced brutal sitcom competition and competition from its own network's Monday Night Football on the West Coast ("MacGyver" aired after MNF, often as late as 11 p.m. or midnight, in some markets not at all). I have every confidence that MacGyver would have been a long-term fixture in the top-20 had it stayed on Wednesday nights.

    Getting to the episode that kicked off season two, "The Human Factor" was an abundance of fun that deviated significantly from the first season's more traditional adventure-themed formula. MacGyver producers were always crafty about triangulating the series' content to appeal to lovers of different genres, and science fiction geeks often celebrate this series soft-core sci-fi episodes such as this one. And the execution of this one was brilliant, save for the one-time-revelation-quickly-forgotten that Pete was also a Vietnam vet, with the litany of gauntlets that Mac and Jill running into being profoundly imaginative. The high point for me was sliding down the garbage disposal chute and having it open up into a pool of acid based on their narrowly exceeding the weight limit. The combination of action and humor was not forced and not cheesy, and Mac's chemistry with Jill was better than with the usual one-dimensional female characters from the series' early seasons. MacGyver's second season premiere was hard not to like and was well-received by viewers with a 15.4 rating (unfortunately, subsequent week's numbers would not be so kind as new comedy "ALF" would quickly hijack MacGyver's would-be audience). The episode unequivocally delivered in every way and stands out as one of the series' high points.
  • Macgyver against the Machine

    This episode is one of my favorates as well. The plot as usual is nothing really new, it's rather familar to other films about computers having a mind of their own like "The Forbin Project". But what makes this good is the ongoing action and suspense that doesn't stop for a minute, sort of like a video game. In fact the chanalge Macgyver has to overcome is set up like one, he has less than a certain amount of time to get to the master circuit to disable the computer before the computer disable him. But unfortunately getting from point A to point B is easier said than done because their are obsticles in his way that will constantly try to prevent him from reaching his goal. We see him at his best in this as he is forced to think up things fast. Like heat magnetic darts against the robots or even jeans to hang away from an acid pit. You go Mac.
  • MacGyvr is called in to test the security at STRADA (Strategic Research Development Administration) which is a top secret project. A state of the art computer system is used as security and suddenly malfunctions....can MacGyver escape in time?

    This was easily one of the best episodes so far in the series. STRADA (Strategic Research Development Administration) has a state of the art computer system that is way ahead of it's time. Jill created this system and makes it think like her, so MacGyver is sent to test the security system and break in single handed. If he passes it's back to the drawing board. If he didn't Woodward gave the Phoenix Foundation the seal of approval.

    All is going well and MacGyver uses some great tactics to enter the compound and break in. Jill is inside with Mac.. when.. suddenly Sandy (the computer system) malfunctions and does everything in her power to defend STRADA.

    Meanwhile Pete and Colonel Woodward are trying to desperately get them out and cut the power to the mainframe.

    A brilliant episode and recommend it to anyone, a full adventure and very intense in some situations. Sci-Fi to the max and a great start to Season 2!!
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