A new episode airs tonight – the last of the “old” episodes. It’s some sort of a Frankenstein episode; partially filmed about a year ago for Season 4.
(Spoiler Alert: You will get spoilered about Season 5 storylines and characters by reading this post and its comments or by clicking on the links provided. For daily news and to join the discussion, you can find me on Twitter and on the MacGyverOnline Forums.)
About Episode 5×08 (MAC418)
Last week was the premiere of Episode 5×08 (SOS + Hazmat + Ultrasound + Frequency + Malihini). CBS released 16 Official Stills and 5 Sneak Peeks beforehand. There was also an interview with Henry Ian Cusick for Parade Magazine.
On February 13, Tech Consultant Rhett Allain released his blog post about the MacGyver Science. We got some additional BtS photos later; e.g. by Guest Star Sunny Mabrey with Jorge Garcia or by Daniel O’Callaghan with Levy Tran.
To recap: Episode 5×07 had 5.163 million live-viewers with a demo of 0.52 in the group of 18-49 year olds. Episode 5×08 got an audience of 4.728 million live-viewers and a demo of 0.50; making it the episode with the lowest audience numbers this season so far.
Compared to the other scripted CBS shows (23 in total at the moment), it places Rank 14 in average live-viewers per episode and Rank 13 in average demo. (Note that recently cancelled NCIS: New Orleans is at Rank 15 for both categories.)
Several of the writers, Showrunner Monica Macer and Lucas Till had joined the live-tweeting. With about 618 estimated tweets per hour, it wasn’t enough for the hashtag #MacGyver to trend US-wide, but we had more tweets than for #MagnumPI (about 189 estimated tweets per hour) or for #BlueBloods (about 523). Overall, the episode was well-received on social media.
What you need to know about Episode 5×09 (MAC420/504)
Tonight is the premiere of Episode 5×09 (Rails + Pitons + Pulley + Pipe + Salt); written by Rob Pearlstein and directed by Christine Moore (who also directed Episode 1×19: Compass).
This episode was partially filmed with production number MAC420 last year. They were in the middle of filming when being shut down due to the pandemic on March 13. They finished shooting the remaining scenes this January. Since it got a new production number (MAC504), it’s possible they added some script revisions.
It will be interesting to try guessing which scenes have been filmed pre- or post-pandemic hiatus.
We got a Press Release on February 8. In case you need a refresher, here’s the synopsis:
When Mac and the team are unable to prevent Department of Defense intel from falling into Codex’s hands, Mac must scale a vertical cliff using only gear he can cobble together himself to prevent the info’s transmission.
We got 8 Official Stills last Friday, all of them featuring MacGyver on and inside a rock formation. They added an additional batch of 9 Stills yesterday; featuring MacGyver, Riley and Desi. You can find all 8 untagged Stills from the first batch on Seat42F.
What you need to know about Episode 5×10 (MAC503)
Next week, there’s a rerun of Episode 4×11 (Psy-Op + Cell + Merchant + Birds). On March 5, we’ll get the premiere of Episode 5×10 (Diamond + Quake + Carbon + Comms + Tower). CBS posted the Press Release with a First Official Still on February 16. Here’s the synopsis:
While on a mission to hunt down a Codex lead, Mac and the team discover Murdoc (David Dastmalchian) hacked their comms and has recorded them for months. Now, Mac and the team must stop Murdoc, who is working with Andrews (Joe Pantoliano), as they plot to kill thousands and reveal each Phoenix member’s most-guarded secrets.
Fans were elated to hear about Murdoc finally coming back after waiting longer than intended – remember the disappointment of Murdoc having been written out of Episode 5×03 (MAC501); presumably due to pandemic-related issues?
Season 5 Overview
Here’s an overview of the upcoming Season 5 episodes. The infos were either provided by CBS, by a little birdie and the website for the Writers Guild of America West (episode titles), by social media accounts or IMDb (cast and crew info), by SpoilerTV (press releases) and The Futon Critic (airdates).
- 5×09 (MAC420/504): Rails + Pitons + Pulley + Pipe + Salt (February 19)
Written by Rob Pearlstein, directed by Christine Moore
- 5×10 (MAC503): Diamond + Quake + Carbon + Comms + Tower (March 5)
Written by Andrew Karlsruher & Andrew Klein, directed by Michael Martinez
Guest appearances by David Dastmalchian and Joe Pantoliano
- 5×11 (MAC505): C8H7ClO + Nano-Trackers + Resistance + Maldives + Mind Games (March 12)
Written by Josh Brown and Teresa Huang, directed by David Straiton. You can find the Press Release here.
I sorted the rest of the upcoming episodes without an official press release yet by production number.
Because the filming schedule seems to be all over the place, it’s very likely that there are some mistakes in my overview:
- 5×12 (MAC506): presumably titled Royalty + Marriage + Vivaah Sanskar + Zinc + Henna (tbd)
Presumed guest appearance by Camilla Arfwedson
- 5×13 (MAC507): presumably titled Barn Find + Oil Slick + La Punzonatura + Lab Rats + Tachometer (tbd)
- 5×14 (MAC508): presumably titled H2O + Orthophosphates + Mission City + Corrosion + Origins (tbd)
- 5×15 (MAC509): tba
We don’t know if they’re still on time with the schedule. As far as we know, filming was planned to be wrapped by March, but that could still change.
Working on Episode MAC506 and beyond
To Recap: It’s been harder to follow what’s going on behind the scenes. I’m assuming they have been filming MAC505 to 507 in parallel. Filming locations in the last few weeks included the Hindu Temple of Atlanta to film an Indian wedding. As guest stars, we had Alexandra Grey, Camilla Arfwedson (Sofia) and Chris Lindsay.
Filming on February 8 involved a helicopter and green screen. Posts on February 10 hinted at cast and crew having a “dark” day. In fact, I haven’t seen any new BtS material since February 9 (although some of the crew posted photos from earlier filming days). Although there has been no official news about production being shut down or put on hiatus, this might have been the case.
Cast, Crew and other MacGyver-related News
On Tuesday, we got two new Casting Calls via Central Casting Georgia: One for a 9-year-old blonde boy that resembles one of the actors and one for a person with some form of a prosthesis (e.g. arm, hand, leg or foot).
Beth Stein Agency congratulated their client Melanie Minichino for booking a guest spot in an upcoming episode. Also, Deadline confirmed my suspicion that Alexandra Grey will have a recurring role. According to the article, she plays Parker, a transgender female Phoenix engineer providing critical assistance to Team Phoenix. Her episodes will start airing on March 12 (meaning Episode 5×11).
I noticed that the MacGyver Writers Twitter Account started following OG Murdoc Michael Des Barres just a few weeks ago, so it’s possible there might be something in the works as well.
ICYMI: CBS announced that they will hold a virtual Upfronts event on May 19. We should know before that date if the show is renewed for another season or cancelled. Although NCIS: New Orleans was just cancelled despite having similar ratings, MacGyver has the advantage of not being as expensive yet as the veteran shows. Of course, there’s also the possibility of the Reboot being pushed to midseason again despite getting renewed to make room for one of the new shows in development (e.g. CSI: Vegas or NCIS: Hawaii).
Lucas Till’s movie Son of the South is still available on demand and in selected theaters. On the official website, you can find a list of theatres and digital platforms. On Amazon US, the DVD and BluRay are listed with a release date of April 6.
The weighted IMDb-Rating is back up to 5.3; holding an arithmetic mean of 6.7 and a median of 7 (meaning that 50% of the voters rated the movie 7 and higher). On Rotten Tomatoes, the Audience Score is at 88% (despite the Tomatometer being at 45%). If you liked the movie, leave a review. A little positive buzz around the lead actor on MacGyver can’t hurt; especially when waiting on a Season 6 renewal.