MacGyver (S02E15) "Murdoc + Handcuffs"

The monumental episode has finally graced our screens. We get double the trouble as the original Murdoc (Michael Des Barres) guest stars as Murdoc’s (David Dastmalchian) mentor of all things chaotic, Nicholas Helman. This dangerous duo seem to be at odds though, which makes for an action packed episode.

Just like any other episode of MacGyver, it starts off innocently enough. A friendly gathering at Mac (Lucas Till) and Bozer’s (Justin Hires) abode soon goes south when an unwanted visitor crashes their party. Offering them something they cannot refuse, Murdoc. He has alienated the “collective” and they want revenge. Will the reward outweigh the risk? MacGyver and Jack are soon to find out.

Riley’s mother Diane  unfortunately gets caught up in the chaos, she finally gets a real taste of what Riley (Tristin Mays) actually does. Matty (Meredith Eaton) reveals the true intentions of the “Phoenix Foundation”. Not only is her daughter an integral part of the team, she is also a force to be reckoned with. With so many story-lines going on in this episode, it was nice to see Riley get the recognition she deserves.

Jack and Mac walk into an inevitable trap, but they knew it was a possibility and their paranoia is warranted. The “Collective” deliver Murdoc, safe and sound. It all seems too easy and when everything goes off without a chaotic scene, you can feel the sense of dread hanging over the victory. A storm is brewing, and they are bound to get caught in the middle of it.

Enter the dynamic force of nature, Helman, who also happens to be the one who taught Murdoc all of his deathly tricks. It seems the vendetta against Murdoc is justified, he did kill Helman’s wife after-all. The trio must fight for their lives, and use some unconventional ways to stay one step ahead of the slighted madman. Double the psychopaths, equals double the fun.

The writers allow us to find out things about these beloved characters that we were sorely lacking. There was an almost, endearing moment, between Mac and Murdoc. It was short lived by the initial threat to their lives, but it was an unexpected depth to the every growing story line. Include the road trip from hell, and they were one big dysfunctional family.

The action was enough to keep the audience engaged, and the unexpected savior of the day, Murdoc, brought one of the biggest surprises of all. With death knocking on MacGyver’s door, it was promptly ended by his arch nemesis. Armed and dangerous, Helman was put down. But we all know that he will be back, they always come back. Now Mac is in Murdoc’s debt, there’s only one thing he wants. His son.

Another crisis has been averted, and things can go back to normal. Which means the quest for Mac’s dad is back on, even with Mac’s second guessing. And Jack can put focus back on his forlorn love life, cue the immpeciable timing of Riley’s mother, and the unsinkable feelings Jack still has for her. All is well. Right?

As we all know by now, no one ever messes with Murdoc and gets away with it. There is always calculated method to his madness, and this episode does not disappoint. Being true to form, he is always one step ahead of the game, preparing for every possible outcome. He gets to see his son, but he wants more. And what Murdoc wants, Murdoc gets.

It was great to see two powerhouse actors come together in Murdoc vs. Murdoc. Both Micheal and David are terrifying and mesmerizing in their performance, it was certainly one of the most memorable episodes to date. I hope to see these two on screen together again.

Now we must wait a month until a new episode airs. I’m sure the wait will be worth it!

MacGyver returns on Friday, March 2nd on CBS at 7/8c.

Photo: Screenshot taken by author of review.