Season 3 Episode 8

The Widowmaker

Aired Sunday 9:00 PM Nov 16, 1987 on ABC

Episode Fan Reviews (5)

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out of 10
72 votes
  • Awesome episode.

    This is another great episode of Macgyver. It's the second episode to feature Murdoch. I like it a lot because all the episodes where Mac battles Murdoch are excellent.

    Here's the plot:

    The episode starts with Mac and his long time friend Mike (short for Michelle,I'm assuming) Forester are climbing a huge cliff know as the "The Widowmaker". Mike is a expert mountain climber,and she managed to get Mac to come along,even though he's scared to death of heights. They stop to rest on a ledge,and Mike decides to tell Mac something that's been bugging her: She wants to be Mac's girlfriend,not just his friend. Mac doesn't take her offer though. He tells her he'd prefer just to stay friends like always. She claims she understands (even thought she's starting to cry) and they begin climbing the cliff again. Mike is now several feet above Mac,and is trying to attach the next length of rope to the rock,but then suddenly,her foot slips,and she falls several feet. Now,the only thing keeping her from falling several hundred feet to the ground is her safety harness. But then,the unthinkable happens: her harness tears under the weight,and breaks free. A horrified Mac has to watch as she falls to her death below.

    We now cut over to Pete as he goes up to his cabin (near the widowmaker,where Mac is staying) and tries to console a grief-stricken Mac. He tells him it wasn't his fault Mike died,and there was nothing he could have done. Mac won't listen. He tells Pete it was his fault because he had upset Mike right before she fell. He then proceeds to snap at Pete several times,and he tells him to just leave him alone. Pete complies,and leaves Mac at the cabin.

    We now cut to Mac's boathouse in LA. It's a dark,and a hand smashes through the glass door,and opens it. We find out shortly after that it's Murdoc. He listens to Mac's answering machine to try and find out where Mac is. Unfortunately,he does find out where Mac is staying. He then takes a blowtorch,and burns a ominous message into the wall: "RIP Macgyver".

    It's now the next day,and we see Nikki Carpenter talking to Pete. She knows Mac had snapped at him the night before,so she decides to go up to the cabin to try and get him out of his slump.

    She then stops at the general store at the top of the mountain to pick up some food and supplies to take to Mac. But after she gets back in her truck,she finds out it won't start. A man asks to take a look under the engine,and then he "fixes" it. He then asks where she's going,and she tells him "to visit a friend" on the mountain. But after Nikki drives away,we can see that this isn't just a local,this is Murdoc.

    We're now at the cabin. Nikki walks in to find everything in a huge mess. She walks out the backdoor,to find a still moody Macgyver sitting by the pond/lake. She tries to cheer him up,but he proceeds to snap at her. He asks her to leave,but after they walk back to the cabin,Mac notices something's wrong. There's a bunch of pictures taped to the ceiling: Pictures of the truck Murdoc "blew up" in. (This was in the episode "Partners" in season 2). Just as Mac is looking at the picture the door is kicked open by a crazed Murdoc,and he's now wielding a flamethrower. He says he wants Macgyver to burn,just like he did. Mac and Nikki are able to escape,and make a run for it. When they arrive at the clearing where their vehicles are parked,they find Mac's jeep with 4 flat tires. They can't get out in that,so they decide to take Nikki's truck. But just as Mac turns the key,all the doors lock,and they will not open again. Then Mac hears a ticking noise: Murdoc has set a bomb under the truck,and there's only about 50 seconds left before it detonates. Luckily Mac is able to kick out the rear window,and he and Nikki escape just as before it blows.

    Mac and Nikki then decide to escape down the road on foot,but now there's a new problem: Murdoch has laid several land mines blocking the road off. So,they decide to set a trap of their own for Murdoch when he comes. Mac uses an antenna and battery from his jeep to create sort of a "Arc-Welder". When Murdoc comes down the road,Mac touches the back of his flamethrower with his new welder. It sparks,blows up,and Murdoc barely makes it away in time. But he does,and now he's madder then ever.

    This next part is classic Macgyver: He and Nikki have now escaped into the woods,and are heading for the widowmaker. But Mac spots a telephone pole,and gets an idea. He climbs and pole-and using Nikki's watch and bracelet-taps an SOS (using Morse-Code) into the telephone line. He just barely gets it through before Murdoc tries to shoot him with a long-range rifle. But did anyone get the message? Thankfully,someone did. The old man who owns the general store was in WW2,and knows Morse-Code. He then calls for help.

    Mac and Nikki are on the run again. They've made it to the edge of the widowmaker,but where to go from there? It's a several hundred foot drop to the bottom. But then,Mac sees something: A climbing rope! It was the one Mike had been using when she fell. He and Nikki then climb down the cliff (maybe 50 feet or so) until they get to a ledge. But Murdoc is hot on their tail. He's brought some climbing gear of his own,and is ready to climb down after them. But Mac doesn't know Murdoc is so close,so just as he's about to hook up a harness for himself,Murdoc comes swinging in with a large knife in hand. He and Mac fight for a couple of minutes,and Murdoc put's a cut on Mac's arm in the process. But,just as he's is swinging in for one final blow,Mac sticks Murdoc's own rope in between him,and Murdoc's knife. Murdoc then falls down to the bottom of the mountain and we hear for the first time his famous:"Maccccgyyyyyverrrrr!!!!!" yell on the way down.

    All's well that ends well...for now. It appears that Murdoc died,but Macgyver knows he's tricky. Will he be back? We'll have to wait until season 4 to find out....

    I hope you enjoyed this review. Thanks for reading! =)
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