Looking Back at Season 1 (XIII) – Guns and Violence

MacGyver doesn’t use guns and only resorts to violence when necessary. He uses his brains – mainly his vast science knowledge – to solve problems and catch the bad guys. This was established by the Original Show. It’s also one of the reasons why the show was so successful in the first place, especially overseas.

Original MacGyver Ad (ABC/Paramount)

A Reboot is always tricky. It’s basically a new show that still has to honor the original to a certain extent. There are some things that can’t be touched while some things are a “nice to have”. Of course, not everyone feels the same about these “nice to have”s.

I was happy they put Lucas Till into the brown leather jacket as a nod to the original. But if they had decided that it was too hot in Atlanta to let Lucas run around in it all day and had to let go of it, that would have been fine by me. No need to make an actor collapse due to a heat-stroke just to have another Easter Egg to cross off your list. I love the voice-overs, but I can understand why they stopped doing them after a while. I know others were very vocal about the lack of rebooted MacGyver’s love for hockey, but I got over that pretty quickly.

For me, it would have been nice if the Reboot (and especially the Pilot Episode) had implemented more of the subtleties of Original MacGyver’s character – e.g. the fact that he doesn’t drink alcohol or that he cares deeply about the welfare of animals and the environment. On the other hand, it was very important to me that they keep MacGyver’s aversion toward guns and violence.

Guns, violence and nudity
There is a time and place for guns, violence or nudity in movies and TV shows. While I don’t think it’s necessary tho have this “holy trinity” in a movie or a TV show to entertain me, I don’t mind it if it happens in the right context and serves a purpose. I don’t need it just for the sake of entertainment – because if there’s a good storyline and great acting, you don’t need the big kabooms or naked shenanigans.

Like most fans of the Original MacGyver show, I believe that there’s no need for guns, violence and nudity in a MacGyver Reboot.

The nonviolent aspect is more than a subtlety, it was the core of the show.

(Nicholas Sweedo, blog-owner of The MacGyver Project)

Original MacGyver was famous for being a family-friendly show. It was different than its counterparts airing at the same time (e.g. The A-Team). Paramount (who owned Original MacGyver back then) used this also for advertizing, e.g. with he statement in the ad above (You don’t need a weapon when you’re armed with imagination) or for the DVD Cover of Season 2 (His Mind is the ultimate Weapon).

Original MacGyver Season 2 DVD Cover (USA)

Of course, CBS and the showrunners were aware that they couldn’t dare rebooted MacGyver using guns and too much violence. MacGyver is a well-known TV show and a bankable Franchise; they didn’t want to lose Original Fans as potential viewers. Problem is: They wanted rebooted MacGyver as the secret agent of the Original Season 1, not the preachier PSA version of the later seasons. They wanted the big kabooms and car chases and bazookas. They wanted the action. So what did they do? They gave rebooted MacGyver combat experience and a gun-wielding sidekick in the character of Jack Dalton.

I don’t need Jack (or Team Phoenix) to handle it
From a production standpoint, writing Jack Dalton as the character he is was kinda brilliant. Also, George Eads is a delight to watch. (Yes, he’s nothing like Original Jack Dalton played by Bruce McGill, but that’s a topic for another blog post.)

My main problem: Bringing Jack in as a gun-wielding Ex-CIA-Agent and Ex-Sniper with Delta Force makes MacGyver’s unique way of problem-solving kinda void. If Mac can’t do it, there’s always Jack who can get him out by shooting at the bad guys. In the end, Mac didn’t really manage to solve the problem without guns (and unnecessary violence) – he just let Jack (or someone else, e.g. Sarah Adler in Episode 1×02) do it.

Episode 1×01: The Rising (via SpoilerTV)

There is a specific scene in the Pilot Episode that was the main reason for fans of the Original Show turning their backs on the Reboot early on. It was also one of the main reasons for the massive amount of backlash on social media while the episode aired (not only in the US, but also in Germany, France or Italy): MacGyver is trying to defuse a bomb (presumably in Afghanistan) with the bad guys closing in. He asks for Jack’s help who promptly shoots them. Sniper-style. Funny quip (Who loves you, baby?) included.

The scene was partially written as an Easter Egg for fans of Hawaii Five-0 and to establish the possibility of a future crossover episode: In a deleted shot of this scene, the word ALOHA can be seen on Jack’s sniper rifle. It’s a nod to the shared history with H50 main character Steve McGarrett (played by Alex O’Loughlin).

Deleted Shot of Episode 1×01: The Rising. Photo by Guy D’Alema (via TVLine)

If the show wasn’t a Reboot of MacGyver, this scene wouldn’t be a big problem, I guess. There is not much to say against the realism of it. The problem is, as Kate stated in the RDA forums:

[MacGyver] didn’t have a back-up team – he WAS the back-up team.

(Kate Ritter, creator and host of the Official Richard Dean Anderson website)

It’s a fine and difficult line to turn the lone-wolf-character of the Original Show into a member of a team without making him appear helpless at times. So far, the Reboot hasn’t quite mastered it yet; especially in the first episodes of Season 1. Since the show is named after a main character, this character should be able to do a mission without having others to bail him out all the time – especially with the help of over-the-top technology (via Riley) or guns (via Jack).

Regarding Mac not using a gun in this — It sometimes ends up just making him look like the least efficient member of the team. 

(Forum User Miasma in the MacGyver Online Forums)

In the Pilot Episode, Mac uses a MacGyverism to create smoke to trigger the fire alarm. So why not just activate the fire alarm by hitting the button? Why not just burn a piece of paper in a bucket? There was no MacGyverism (and therefore no MacGyver) needed here because anyone else could have thought of that and done it. The MacGyverism was just for show.

Episode 1×01: The Rising (via SpoilerTV)

To be fair, this happened in the Original Show as well sometimes. But now that MacGyver is surrounded by a team, such unnecessary MacGyverisms are even more obvious. They needed a distraction that could have been delivered by Riley or Jack as efficiently – and faster, without wasting any chemicals.

Also, the fact that CBS chose to send MacGyver on missions as a secret agent instead of traipsing around and finding himself in trouble while trying to help others creates another problem: If they are sent on missions planned in advance with Riley bringing her laptop and Jack bringing his gun, whey don’t they take their spy-kits (with night-vision-goggles and other useful stuff) with them as well? They would still need to improvise every now and then, but they wouldn’t need to start from scratch every time.

The reason that MacGyver takes on missions by the government without any gear can’t be explained that easily in the Reboot as in the Original where he didn’t have a team.

I don’t need no guns
You might remember Original Episode 5×06: Halloween Knights, where Murdoc enlists MacGyver’s help to rescue his sister from former employer HIT (Homicide International Trust).

It would have been an easy and lazy way for the writers to let Murdoc bring his deadly tools. But MacGyver made following deal with Murdoc: No guns or I don’t help you. Of course, Murdoc found a way to cheat on the deal, and yet MacGyver still didn’t use the deadly tools in the way Murdoc had intended. It was the core of the episode (and the original series) to catch the bad guys without the help of guns and bombs (or only using them as distraction devices).

Episode 1×01: The Rising (via SpoilerTV)

In a video interview with ET Online (September 29, 2016), Lucas Till said about the role of Jack Dalton: “He uses the guns, because MacGyver famously doesn’t use guns.” Yes, that’s right. But the writers didn’t really get the point, did they?

See Episode 1×02 (Metal Saw) for example: What’s the point using a MacGyverism instead of a gun if there’s a gun (or two, maybe even three with Thornton on board) at hand anyway? Instead of throwing the net onto the bike to stop the bad guy, they could have kept shooting at the tires with the same effect. Original MacGyver is known for using guns as a tool; but if rebooted MacGyver accepts a gun-wielding posse around him anyway, he could have just asked them to shoot at the tires. Or shoot at the tires himself.

There is a reason why MacGyver avoids guns. And it’s not because it looks way more interesting if he doesn’t use them.

Back when Executive Producers Peter Lenkov and James Wan attended ComicCon in July 2016, I was actually pleasantly surprised that they really intended to keep Mac not using guns. I never expected the Reboot to be as strictly anti-gun as the original; and I’m pretty sure we’ll never see episodes like “Blood Brothers” or “The Gun” like we did in the Original Show – but those interviews back then gave me hope.

So of course after watching the first few episodes, I was very disappointed how this topic was handled. Fact is: Original MacGyver doesn’t just not use guns (unless it’s as a wrench or another tool) – he condones them. He hates them with a passion. And he insists on people leaving their gun behind if they want him to help. As soon as they made Jack a gun-wielding Ex-CIA-Agent, they kinda eliminated one of the core points (or maybe even THE core point) of the original.

I don’t need the bad guys to get killed
The other problem I have with the ALOHA-Scene: Original MacGyver would never work with someone who regularly kills people to protect him. Knocking them unconscious or incapacitating them in another way yes, but not kill them. He also wouldn’t tolerate said someone to be so cavalier about it.

Let’s be honest: The Original Show was cheesy and quirky and not very realistic when it came to bad guys getting knocked on the head. John Kendrick (played by Vinnie Jones) in the Pilot Episode of the Reboot is a bad guy who would have fit in well in an original episode – especially the way he’s captured: MacGyver drops an Escape Ladder on him. Realistically, Kendrick should have been dead. But he doesn’t even appear concussed, and that’s fine with me.

Episode 1×01: The Rising (via SpoilerTV)

So why didn’t they do this for other bad-guys-scenes as well, e.g. in the boat chase: The goons see the empty boat coming at them. Why not let them jump off the boat before it crashes into them and explodes? It’s exactly what would have happened in an Original Episode.

The Anti-Handgun-Stance of the Original Show
The Original Show was very anti-gun, specifically anti-handgun. I wasn’t aware that this was kinda unique for an US TV-Show until I grew older. As a kid, in my opinion only bad guys carried guns – unless they were police officers or soldiers.

Growing up in Switzerland, I never came in contact with guns until my first boyfriend had to join the military service at the age of 18. And it wasn’t until I started watching TV shows in their original language that I realized how the use of guns, violence and sexuality differentiates in the US compared to Europe.

Sean Wohland and Richard Dean Anderson in a Promo Photo for Original MacGyver Episode 4×02 (Blood Brothers)

Original MacGyver Episode 4×02 (Blood Brothers, 1988) had impressed me back then when I first watched it as a kid – and it’s still one of my favorite episodes. In Blood Brothers, MacGyver returns to his hometown to find himself haunted by the memories of a fatal shooting accident when he was a kid. (Mac had brought a gun to make shooting excercises at beer cans with his friends. When Neil tried to shoot at a bird, MacGyver prevented him from doing so, ending with Jesse getting accidentally shot in the chest and dying.)

On November 18 in 1988, Richard Dean Anderson talked about the story behind this episode on Good Morning America and how the NRA (National Rifle Association) had managed in Paramount making the producers drop the message they had wanted to add at the end of the episode.

In Episode 6×03 (The Gun, 1990), a gun used to assassinate a presidential candidate years ago is found, leading investigators to accuse MacGyver’s friend from the youth center of shooting a cop.

Before the episode aired, Co-Executive Producer Stephen Downing (an ex-officer in the LA Police Departement) talked with the Los Angeles Times about the problems they had been facing two years ago:

“The result of that story was a lashing out of us by the NRA. Since that time, we have been on their hit list. They have been encouraging people not to watch us and boycott our sponsors. We try to do a decent job of really saying why a gun is dangerous and they choose to boycott us and put us on their hit list.”

(Co-Executive Producer Stephen Downing for LA Times, October 1990)

Don’t get me wrong: I’m aware that opinions in “TV Show Life” and real life aren’t always the same. Original MacGyver Richard Dean Anderson and many of the cast and crew were very anti-handgun themselves. It’s one of the reasons why episodes like “Blood Brothers” or “The Gun” exist. That doesn’t mean that all people working on the show had the same opinion about this topic.

I also know that this doesn’t reflect the opinions of everyone working on the Reboot. I’ve seen pictures of crew members showing off their gun collections (and no, they weren’t always prop guns) on social media. I’ve seen pictures of Lucas Till going hunting with his extended family and I’ve read interviews with George Eads stating he had gone hunting with Lucas on the weekends.

This is all BtS stuff that we probably wouldn’t even know about if not for social media. But that doesn’t mean they can’t address the topic in the Reboot and handle it in a similar way as the Original did. After all, they knew that a certain amount of expected anti-gun and anti-violence stance would come with the package; no matter if they made a reboot (instead of a sequel, a prequel or a remake).

It’s getting better…
I’ve been complaining a lot, haven’t I. I have no problem to admit that the show DID get better concerning the use of guns as the series progressed.

It’s just a pity that within the first episode, they had already lost a lot of potential viewers – mainly fans of the Original Show. And mainly due to the fact how they had handled the use of guns and violence.

Overall, the show felt a bit like a compromise to me: They had the order by CBS to reshoot the Unaired Pilot and to keep the Ex-CIA-Agent as the bromance-buddy. There wasn’t much time left because the premiere date wasn’t to be changed. So Peter Lenkov turned Lincoln into Jack Dalton; therefore keeping the action-buddy AND an Easter Egg (and the chemistry between Lucas Till and George Eads that had already been established). But that also meant there would always be a gun present in MacGyver’s vicinity and that turned out to be a problem.

After watching the first few episodes, I had made following statement in the MacGyver Online Forums:

The story still has to work if there wasn’t a gun involved. Let Jack’s gun disappear (lost, taken by the bad guys, running out of ammo) and see what happens. Does the storyline hold up? Do the MacGyverisms still work? If not, that’s not a MacGyver story.

It’s interesting that storywise, two of my favorite episodes are actually episodes where Jack doesn’t have immediate access to his gun. In Episode 1×10 (Pliers), Mac and Team travel to Mission City in their free time to accompany Mac who’s finally agreed to give a chemistry lesson at his old high school. As far as I know, Jack hadn’t taken his gun with him since this wasn’t an official mission.

Episode 1×13: Large Blade (via SpoilerTV)

In Episode 1×13 (Large Blade), Jack loses his gun right at the beginning. He gets it back later into the episode, but never really gets to shoot it.

…but there’s still some work to do.
While the writers sure will honor MacGyver not using guns in the upcoming second Season as well, I think they really need to address the reasons more explicitly soon.

There’s actually an easy way to explain rebooted MacGyver’s aversion towards guns: When it’s revealed in Episode 1×02 that Mac’s mother died when he was 5, I immediately thought she had been shot and that this would turn out as the backstory for a flashback episode.

BtS with the prop gun for Episode 1×08: Corkscrew (via Lucas Till on Twitter)

Problem is: In Episode 1×08 (Corkscrew), rebooted Murdoc invades MacGyver’s home. Bozer asks MacGyver why he didn’t have a gun like Jack. If Mrs MacGyver had died at the hand of a gun, wouldn’t Bozer as Mac’s best friend know that? And shouldn’t he already know that MacGyver would never want to carry a gun, despite him being in the military for several years?

Personally, I would hate this backstory for rebooted MacGyver. Because it would make MacGyver a victim only. In the original version, it’s revealed that it was a young MacGyver that had brought the gun that killed one of his friends. He was partially a complice in Jesse dying and never got over feeling guilty about it. Which might have formed and festered the need in MacGyver to help others and save other people’s life.

Guns should also be a controversial topic between Mac and Jack – or at least they should have been when they started working together. There’s no way that MacGyver was able to join the military and a secret government agency without having to fight about his right not having to handle guns in the past.

 

So please, dear MacGyver writers! Take on this hot topic and turn it into something fruitful. This shouldn’t be ignored and I think there’s a big possibility to add even more value to this show by finally handling it properly.

 

Author’s Note: I wasn’t trying to make a political blog post here, but as you maybe noticed: I’m strictly anti-gun. Always have been. I’m willing to discuss this topic in a civil manner, but you won’t change my mind. And I won’t try to change yours. Just saying what I think about the use of guns and violence in the first Season of the MacGyver Reboot and why it should have been handled differently.

Advertisements

MacGyver Reboot Update #33

Production has started on Season 2. Yesterday, cast and crew started filming in Atlanta under the watchful eyes of Clover, the new Production Office Dog.

Episode 2×01: DIY or DIE (via Lucas Till)

(Major Spoiler Alert: You will get spoilered about storylines in Season 2 by reading this post and its comments or by clicking on the links provided!)

 

Season 2 News
On June 27, Starrynight Productions revealed that the production office for Season 2 is open. Some crew members (e.g. Andrew Arcieri) posted pictures while setting up the lights or tech-scouting last week. Overall, pictures were harder to find then back when they had started production on Season 1. On July 3, Lucas Till presented us Clover, the new Production Office Dog. He also posted a short video on Instagram Live Stories. So far, she doesn’t seem too excited to be there.

Lucas and Production Office Dog Clover (via Lucas Till)

Filming for Season 2 started on Thursday, July 6. The title for the first episode is “DIY or DIE”, the phrase being mentioned by MacGyver while MacGyvering the parachute in the Pilot Episode. Lucas soon posted the first picture from set which shows Team Phoenix in a car (that Jack is driving, of course). A few hours later, Justin Hires posted a different picture of the same scene. He also posted some videos via Instagram and stated that he had imagined a different look for Bozer, but that the studio had made him cut his hair.

Cast, Crew and Character News
Bobby Roth revealed that he will direct an episode in September. He has already directed Episode 1×05 (Toothpick) for Season 1.

We also got some new exclusive spoilers about the storyline of Episode 2×01 (set in Istanbul, Turkey) and about new recurring characters. According to Moviehole, there will be not one, but TWO new female characters: Olivia Cage and an intel extraction specialist named Agent Carmen. While Olivia Cage is a “woman to be reckoned with and someone we will get to know well”, Agent Carmen has been described as “late twenties, fierce, focused and utterly fascinating”. Sounds like new love interests for our guys – and a potential for conflict as well since Agent Carmen is ex-CIA and has history with Matty.

Episode 2×01: DIY or DIE (via Justin Hires)

So far, there’s only one character role listed on IMDb. Marco Sanchez will play the role of “Mr. Diaz”, the father of a missing soldier that was believed to have been killed in action two years ago, but was actually kidnapped by terrorists. There is an audition tape for this role that was posted by Roberto Montesinos. He obviously didn’t get the part, but still decided to upload the audition for his portfolio.

It won’t be long until new cast members will be announced officially. If you remember, at the beginning of Season 1 it was Justin Hires that had hinted at Tristin Mays being part of the cast when he posted a picture of her with Lucas and himself exactly a year ago today. The official statement about Tristin being part of the show was released more than two weeks later (on July 27).

BtS of Season 1 (July 2016, via Justin Hires)

Of course, most fans want to know who will play MacGyver’s father. In a video interview for ET Canada at the press junket in Amsterdam, Lucas stated that he would love for James Remar (Dexter, Django Unchained) to play his dad because he would be “such a good bad guy”. (Remar has been in 2 of Lucas’ projects: X-Men: First Class and All Superheroes must die). Lucas mentioned that most people would expect Richard Dean Anderson as MacGyver’s father, but that he couldn’t imagine RDA in this role because he should be the good guy (and therefore the grandfather) MacGyver has a good relationship with.

Central Casting Georgia has been looking for many Extras, e.g. for kids and adults (military, patrons, guards) to portray middle easteners, for Caucasian lab techs, for hospital nurses and doctors and for cars from the 1950s to 1980s.

MacGyver Promo in Europe
In June, Lucas Till had been on Promo Tour across Europe. Every now and then, we get new articles, interviews and pictures of the press junkets in Amsterdam, Monte Carlo or Madrid; of the CBS Squad enjoying European food or of Lucas meeting his fansFotogramas posted a new picture of Lucas with Robert Patrick during the press junket in Amsterdam.

Robert Patrick and Lucas Till for the CBS Press Junket in Amsterdam (via Fotogramas)

According to an interview written down by the Swiss Boulevard Newspaper Blick, Lucas enjoys not only playing videogames, but also fishingm – and wants to buy a houseboat one day. (Sadly, Blick forgot to point out the connection to the Original Show, totally missing out on a statement that was probably meant as a joke.) Because a houseboat is a bit costly and more time-consuming to take care of, Lucas honored Original MacGyver by buying a Jeep instead.

Reruns
Today, there will be a rerun of the Pilot Episode (The Rising). Next week, you can catch a rerun of Episode 2 (Metal Saw). After a short break, there will be a rerun of Episode 6 (Wrench) on July 28.

Lucas taking time for fans in Madrid (via Brianna Bri)

The Friday reruns continue to earn good ratings. The rerun of Episode 7 (Can Opener) aired on a Thursday, but still managed to get 2.92 million live viewers (with a rating of 0.5 in the 18-49 Demo group). The rerun of Episode 16 (Hook) on the next day garnered 4.23 million live viewers (with 0.6 in demo). A week later, the rerun of Episode 19 (Compass) had 4.07 million live viewers (with the usual 0.5 rating in demo).

I still think it’s funny how CBS handles the reruns; seemingly airing them in more or less random order. (I’m not sure if this is usually done like this in the US.)

What are cast and crew up to?
After Madrid, Lucas had joined Wilmer Valderrama for a visit to London before he returned back to Atlanta to spend some time with his family. His mother Dana posted some pictures of Lucas spending time with his brother Nick and gearing up for MacGyver.

An actor prepares (via Dana Brady Till)

While filming for Season 2 started on July 6 in Atlanta, Executive Producer Peter Lenkov was in Hawaii to prepare for Season 8 of Hawaii Five-0. It’s possible that after the unexpected exit of two main cast members (Grace Park and Daniel Dae Kim who had been in the Crossover Episode 1×18), Lenkov will need to spend some more time on site in Hawaii this season. Sadly, the reasons and speculations surrounding the exits of Park and Dae Kim make it unlikely that we will see them on MacGyver next season and might diminish the chance of another crossover with H50 – but who knows.

MacGyver in Germany – Ratings
Two episodes of the Reboot air in Germany on Mondays, 8.15 pm on Sat.1. Against predictions on social media and the constant negative reviews, the show continues to earn good ratings. On Premiere Day, the first two episodes had garnered 2.10 and 1.99 million live viewers (with a market share of 12.9% and 10.9% within the important demo group of 14-49 years). The hashtag #MacGyver trended on Twitter for over an hour.

(via moviepilot)

As expected, the ratings dropped for the second week. Episode 3 earned 710’000 live viewers with a market share of 9% within demo (which is a market share of 6.2% in total viewers, consisting of 1.63 million). Interestingly, Episode 4 fared better with 880’000 live viewers (with a market share of 9.7% in demo). It’s possible that the hot weather lately works in favor of the second episode that airs around 9.15 pm.

I never cared about German ratings before and don’t know much about them, to be honest – so any conclusion done by myself needs to be taken with a grain of salt. Apparently, the cable networks aspire a market share in demo of at least 10% for prime time which isn’t achieved that easily, resulting in TV shows often being moved to later airtimes after only two or three episodes. The networks are not very patient with new shows, either – if they don’t get high enough ratings within the first few weeks, they will be rescheduled (which usually doesn’t help the ratings either).

This exact fate happened to Justin’s other series Rush Hour that premiered on the same day as MacGyver – the market shares of 7.2% and 5.9% for the first two episodes (airing at 22pm) resulted in the show being “banned” to midnight. The time slot has been filled with the newest Season of Hawaii Five-0, the other show that is executive produced by Peter Lenkov. Sadly, the change was so sudden that many viewers were caught unaware; either missing out on the premiere of H50 or stating their anger on social media, believing Rush Hour had already been cancelled.

Sat.1 Teaser Promo on Facebook (Screenshot)

Therefore, it’s not that surprising that due to the sudden change in schedule, the premiere of H50 on July 3rd didn’t have that good ratings (720’000 live viewers with a market share of 9.3%) as it could have had. It actually had less viewers than MacGyver. For comparison, Episodes 5 and 6 of the Reboot managed 750’000 resp. 960’000 live viewers this week (with a market share in the advertising-relevant demo group of 9% resp. 10.5%). Interestingly, the show hasn’t been trending on Twitter since the premiere, but while people keep lamenting on social media that Sat.1 should cancel the show, the network keeps promoting it with video clips and pictures (which they usually don’t do for such a long time period). It will be interesting to see if the ratings for MacGyver and H50 will influence each other as they did in the US.

MacGyver in Germany – Episode Titles
I’m still not that happy with the German episode titles. They’re not really as bad and spoilery as they could be, but it’s still a bit disappointing.

Sat.1 Teaser Promo on Facebook (Screenshot)

The next episode titles that are already known:
1×07 (Can Opener): Befreiungskünstler (Escape Artist)
1×08 (Corkscrew): Codename: S-218
1×09 (Chisel): Die Hand Gottes (The Hand of God)
1×10 (Pliers): Gespenster der Vergangenheit (Ghosts of the Past)
1×11 (Scissors): Schnee in Kalifornien (Snow in California)
1×12 (Screwdriver): Chrysalis
1×13 (Large Blade): Camping in Kasachstan
1×14 (Fish Scaler): Auf der Flucht (On the Run)
1×15 (Magnifying Glass): Zodiac-Mörder (Zodiac Murderer)

Interestingly, it appears that they won’t air the Christmas Episode (1×11) – although the episode has already been dubbed into German and they don’t have any problems airing the Halloween Episode (1×08) next week. It’s possible that they’re not airing all episodes at once; taking a break and/or airing 1×11 around Christmas time as a Special Event.

MacGyver Reboot Update #25

Disclaimer: My original guest-post was first published on The MacGyver Project on March 17, 2017. I made some minor changes (e.g. grammar or source corrections, link corrections, additional pictures) before re-posting it on my own blog for safe-keeping.

Production of Season 1 has partially wrapped. There are 3 more episodes left for us to watch. We don’t know much what’s going to happen in these, so expectations are high.

BtS of Episode 1×18: Flashlight (via Simon Rhee)

(Spoiler Alert: You will get spoilered by reading this post and its comments or by clicking on the links provided!)

 

It’s a wrap. I think?
Justin Hires has wrapped and will be hosting a “Wrap Party Comedy Show” tomorrow. Tristin Mays also seems to have finished her part while some of the actors were still filming the Season Finale today. Although there is a new casting call for a photo double for next week, Executive Producer Peter Lenkov just posted an instagram picture with the announcement of the end of Season 1.

Of course, the post-production work is not done yet. But since the next episode won’t air until March 31, Lenkov has a bit more time than usual to edit the remaining episodes.

End of Season 1 (via Peter Lenkov)

Working on the Season Finale
There was a lot of promo going on for the Crossover Episode with Hawaii Five-0. Otherwise, it’s been quiet again. Cast and crew have been working on the last two episodes of the season and started filming the season finale last week. The few times they found a minute or two to post on social media, it was mainly Instagram Live Stories (which disappear after 24 hours) or pictures that didn’t reveal very much (e.g. of the barbecue grill at MacGyver’s home).

One thing for sure: There will be a lot of fire power, action scenes (e.g. a car chasing scene) and blood. We’ve seen several pics of Matty pointing a gun. There is also a tac team and military guys. Lucas Till posted a picture of Lee David Zlotoff visiting the set and posing with the cast. The picture reveals that Bozer will probably get hurt (and Riley might get bloody in the process). Tristin Mays showed us the proper way to put fake blood on your chest (hint: you use a straw).

Lee Zlotoff visiting the set (via Lucas Till)

Also, Bozer’s robot will make a comeback. It cuddled with Stunt Coordinator Jeff Wolfe and took a ride in Jack Dalton’s car (as seen on Robert Ratner’s Instagram Live Story). I’m assuming Jack won’t like that very much.

Premiere of the Crossover Episode
The last episode (Ruler) had earned the lowest ratings of the entire season so far (6.93 million viewers). The crossover episode (Flashlight) did better (7.73 million viewers), but lost a bit in the 18-49 demo group (1.0 instead of Ruler‘s 1.1). Overall, the ratings were good – but not as good as the promo cycle promised. Nevertheless, the Hashtag #MacGyver trended very fast on Twitter and continued to trend hours after the episode had aired. It also trended again on the weekend and on Monday in other countries (e.g. New Zealand).

The cast had joined the crossover promotion; sharing the stills, trailers, clips and articles or posting an “expensive selfie” (via Lucas Till) or a picture of Meredith Eaton with Taylor Wily. Peter Lenkov went live on Facebook to answer fan questions. The writers of Hawaii Five-0 tweeted along with the MacGyver writers.

BtS of Episode 1×18: Flashlight (via MSN)

During and after the premiere, the extras shared some more BtS pictures. Simon Rhee provided a picture of the main cast with their stunt doubles. Nik Kash (who played the scientist hanging onto a window ledge until he got rescued by Jack Dalton) posted a BtS picture of that scene and one of him posing with George Eads. Rome Flynn (Bozer’s rival) posted a BtS picture of him with Tristin Mays. We also got an adorable picture of dog Mila posing on the crossover set at the beach.

Stills, Sneak Peeks and Crossover Interviews
A day before the crossover premiere, we got some exclusive pics by MSN. After 3 episodes without any trailer previews, we got a lot of material for the crossover; e.g. ET Canada asking Lucas Till and George Eads which Hawaii Five-0 star would be the best at macgyvering himself out of a situation (apparently Daniel Dae Kim). We also got to see an exclusive trailer by Entertainment Weekly, a sneak peek by Yahoo, an exclusive clip by Mashable, a sneak peek by TV Guide and another one by Entertainment Weekly. ET Online additionally aired a short BtS sequence just before the premiere.

BtS of Episode 1×18: Flashlight (via Lucas Till)

In an interview with TVLine, Peter Lenkov talked about the connection between Jack Dalton and Steve McGarrett and that he would love to do more crossovers. He talked about the difficulties of doing a crossover with ET Online (it’s the logistics) and why – to the disappointment of many Hawaii-Five-0-Fans – only a part of the H50-Team made it into the episode.

Lenkov also wrote an article for the Hollywood Reporter; explaining why TV loves a good crossover and about what crossovers he personally deems the best.

Cast and Character News
Central Casting Georgia has been looking for a lot of Extras the last few weeks; e.g. for Baseball Fans, Techs and Agents (young, attractive and smart-looking), men with real military or tactical experience, English Mercenaries and for Arab looking men to portray Egyptians (Cairo, anyone?). They put up a new casting call today for a photo double of a caucasian woman with light brown hair.

Episode 1×21: Cigar Cutter (via Randall Goltzman)

What’s going to happen now?
We don’t know much about the remaining episodes. We finally got the title for Episode 19 (Compass) and its airdate (March 31). There are no press releases or stills so far. They have been filming on a baseball field (probably for Episode 20: Hole Puncher) and inside the same building that was used for Episode 17 (Ruler) as the CIA headquarters in Amsterdam.

There will be more promo before the Season Finale since CBS46 was on set and did interviews with the cast.

We still don’t know yet if there will be another season, but most sites are still predicting a season renewal (e.g. Movie Pilot, SpoilerTV or TV Grim Reaper).

MacGyver Reboot Update #24

Disclaimer: My original guest-post was first published on The MacGyver Project on March 3, 2017. I made some minor changes (e.g. grammar or source corrections, link corrections, additional pictures) before re-posting it on my own blog for safe-keeping.

Only four Episodes left on Season 1. Are you sad about the impending Finale? Don’t be, because a great villain of the original show will make an appearance!

Episode 1×18: Flashlight (via SpoilerTV)

(Spoiler Alert: You will get spoilered by reading this post and its comments or by clicking on the links provided!)

 

Gearing up for the Finale
Yesterday evening I’ve written following part as my introduction for this update:

It’s been oddly quiet on social media recently. It might just be the calm before the next cycle of promo (for the crossover episode with Hawaii Five-0) hits us like an earthquake.

(See what I did there? Haha.)

Well, it’s already started. Just a few hours ago, Entertainment Weekly released the first promo trailer for Episode 18 (Flashlight).

Otherwise, it IS more quiet than usual; probably because Cast and Crew are busy with scouting, filming and editing while Executive Producer Peter Lenkov is preparing to produce another TV show this Summer (does this man ever sleep?).

Production should wrap up around mid-March. Justin Hires already sent out his invitation for a MacGyver Wrap Party Comedy Show on March 18.

For the last four episodes, there seem to be good things (and characters) waiting on the horizon. Lenkov himself revealed some interesting tidbits; e.g. that the Finale will explain some more about Cairo. On another (and kinda disappointing) note, we’ll get an episode less than expected because Episode 21 (Cigar Cutter) will be the Season Finale. Fans of the original show can rejoyce, though because none other than Dr. Zito will show up! I’m really curious who they’ve cast for this role.

BtS of Episode 1×19: Compass (via Shannon Thomas)

Working on Episodes 18, 19 and 20
We haven’t seen many pictures of the filming process of Episodes 19 (title still unknown) and 20 (Hole Puncher), despite production filming outside several times (e.g. at Grant Park, at Morehouse College posing for MIT and at East Lake Golf Club) during the last two weeks. The few pics of the main cast so far are of Lucas Till and George Eads; George rendering fans starstruck and posing on what looks like a hospital set. Justin Hires shared a short video of the Golf Set, both him and Tristin Mays wearing golf gear. Hopefully, they’re not looking for another Malaysian doctor to help with on-the-fly-surgery.

The fact that there will be a rerun of the Murdoc-Episode tonight (1×08: Corkscrew) gives Peter Lenkov some more time for the editing process on the crossover episode (1×18: Flashlight). Thanks to his Instagram Live Story on March 2, we finally know where that cute dog will show up.

Premieres of Episodes 16 and 17
Ratings have been falling. Episode 16 (Hook) had 7.24 million viewers (along with a 0.9 rating in the 18-49 demo group). Last week’s episode (Ruler) even earned the lowest ratings of the entire season so far (6.93 million viewers), but did better in the very important 18-49 demo group (1.1).

BtS of Episode 1×17: Ruler (via Deborah Mace)

Both times, the Hashtag #MacGyver has been trending again while the writers engaged in live tweetings. For the premiere of Episode 16, “Billy Colton” Lance Gross joined the writer’s office.

So far, we haven’t heard anything official about a possible season renewal, and while the crossover episode with Hawaii Five-0 will most likely get good ratings, it’s probably more important that the remaining three episodes manage to pull high numbers.

While many think a season renewal is a given, it’s interesting to note that both Lucas and George (who’s never on social media anymore) have urged people to watch the newest episodes to rise the numbers.

Lucas, Justin, the Stand-Ins and crew members along with the Colton-Cast posted many never-seen-before BtS pics (e.g. of the location scouting) and videos (e.g. of the blue-van-kaboom) to make us curious about the newest episodes. There was a LOT going on on social media during the premieres, so I was a bit surprised about the lower ratings.

BtS Episode 1×17: Ruler (via Tristin Mays / CBS)

Stills and Sneak Peeks
As for the last episodes, there was no new preview trailer for Episodes 16 or 17. We got stills and sneak peeks for Episode 17 (Ruler), though and stills and the above-mentioned preview trailer for Episode 18 (Flashlight).

Crossover Interviews and Other Promo
Several outlets have visited Lucas and George on set of the crossover episode. The Insider played lazy and let the two guys interview each other. ET Canada pretended to be disappointed about the set visit. No beaches, palm trees or guys with their shirts off – I guess they had a point.

On February 22, CBS Watch! Magazine released the BtS video of their photoshoot with Lucas and George. The interview with Justin Hires is also available to read on the website now.

Technical Advisor Rhett Allain posted some more learning videos; e.g. about “How to use Magnets like Mac“.

BtS of Poster Promo Shoot (via Nick Tortorici)

This week, some pictures have surfaced from the Poster Promo Shoot. In case you ever wondered why I’ve never posted a picture of the official poster (besides the wall painting on Hotel Figueroa) in any of my updates: I hate it. It’s so overly photoshopped and makes Lucas look like a snotty, smirking, bratty jerk. So it was a nice surprise to see a “real” BtS picture of Lucas hanging with that parachute (looks so much better!) and to know the crew also had a lot of fun doing this shoot.

aTVfest Appearance
As mentioned in my last update, Lucas, Tristin and Justin had made an appearance at aTVfest on February 4, attending a Q&A Panel along with Peter Lenkov and Jeff Downer. If you want to check it out, you can watch the full panel over here.

The most interesting part for me was Peter Lenkov talking about the role he had intended Richard Dean Anderson to play (starts at Minute 22). For fans of the original show, it’s not that much of a surprise (although it’s not the most obvious of the most likely choices, either).

aTVfest (via Tristin Mays)

Lenkov also revealed that the character of Bozer initially really had been planned as the comedic relief and unsuspecting roommate-slash-best friend, but talking to Justin Hires had made him revise the character and integrate him into the Phoenix Foundation.

Cast and Character News
Central Casting Georgia has been looking for a lot of Extras the last few weeks; e.g. for college students, business people, men with military or tactical experience, Asian golfers, reporters, LAPD, Baseball fans, agents, techs, a waiter and a waitress, patrons and for a “Caucasian looking Brunette woman” for a still photo shoot that will be playing the wife of an actor.

Interesting to note: Sandrine Holt was listed for Episode 19 on IMDb, but her credit has mysteriously disappeared. I really hope she’s coming back this season because her storyline has never been wrapped up to my satisfaction (and it probably never will as long as they keep her being a traitor). Her usual Stand-In (Briana Lamb) has been back on set, so I’m really hoping.

Episode 1×19: Compass (via Anthony Kountz)

Also, another Original MacGyver alumn has been seen on set: François Chau who played the character “Chi” in Episode 7×05 (The Coltons). I have to admit I don’t really remember his role, but I’ve seen him in several episodes of “Lost”.

As mentioned above, Dr. Zito will make an appearance in the Season Finale. Two villains for the finale seems a bit much, but there’s a chance we’ll get to see Murdoc an episode sooner because David Dastmalchian has been in Atlanta recently.

MacGyver Reboot Update #23

Disclaimer: My original guest-post was first published on The MacGyver Project on February 17, 2017. I made some minor changes (e.g. grammar or source corrections, link corrections, additional pictures) before re-posting it on my own blog for safe-keeping.

It’s official: MacGyver will have a crossover episode with Hawaii Five-0 next month!

Episode 18: Flashlight (via Daniel Dae Kim)

(Spoiler Alert: You will get spoilered by reading this post and its comments or by clicking on the links provided!)

 

MacGyver goes Hawaii
In my last guest-post (Update No. 22) two weeks ago, I speculated about an impending crossover between MacGyver and Hawaii Five-0. Executive Producer Peter Lenkov has said several times (e.g. at San Diego Comic Con) that he would love to do a crossover episode. He also talked about the connection between the two shows and the potential crossover he had written into the script for the pilot episode, namely a backstory of Jack Dalton sharing history with Steve McGarrett. (The scene had indeed been filmed, but the direct reference didn’t make it into the final cut.)

Pilot Episode: The Rising (via Peter Lenkov)

My speculations manifested due to Central Casting Georgia announcing a casting call on February 2 for Asian-looking Extras; in particular Hawaiians (certified in First Aid and CPR or having real life experience as EMTs, Paramedics, Doctors, Nurses or Rescue Workers).

Not even 20 hours later, Lucas Till spilled the beans by sharing a picture of Taylor Wily on the MacGyver set in Atlanta. It didn’t take long for press releases and articles to pop up with more information. According to TVLine, the Episode called “Flashlight” will air on March 10. The story will involve Mac and the team travelling to the big Island of Hawaii to aid in earthquake-relief efforts. There, MacGyver and Jack will team with Chin Ho and Kono to rescue a group of government scientists trapped in a building on the verge of collapse.

The Earthquake Episode
So far, not that many pictures have resurfaced from either sets in Atlanta or Hawaii. But we might get to see some special promo since they did cast interviews and B-Rolls on location.

Episode 18: Flashlight (via CBS Express)

On February 4, Taylor Wily posted a short video of the MacGyver home dressed up for Mac’s birthday. On February 9, Fred Andres granted us a first look at one of the sets – although back then, it was still unclear if the main cast would actually film scenes in Hawaii or if they would stay in Atlanta while 2nd Unit got the necessary outside film material on location.

On February 13, we finally got pictures of Lucas Till and George Eads on the earthquake set at Leahi Hospital. The crew was seen lifting heavy rocks around while the Stunt Team was already filming with Stunt Coordinator Jeff Wolfe. Casey Alicino revealed the director’s name (Jonathan Brown).

On Valentine’s Day, Daniel Dae Kim posted the first official picture of the crossover team. The Press Release on February 16 brought us the first official still. Seems there was a dress code to wear shades of blue!

BtS of Episode 16: Hook (via Tristin Mays)

Working on Episodes 18 and 19
While Lucas and George were in Hawaii, the rest of Team Phoenix filmed their scenes in Atlanta (e.g. on a jet or in the lab) with the crew working behind the scenes and the guest-stars finishing ADR (e.g. Jermaine Rivers for tonight’s Episode 16). It’s nice to see that despite the hard work, the cast still takes time to pose for pictures with the Extras or with fans.

Peter Lenkov posted some videos while editing; e.g. a video of editing Hawaii Five-0 that mentions Jack and the Phoenix Foundation. Interestingly, another (now deleted) video appeared to be a huge spoiler for the ending of next week’s episode 17 (Ruler).

As Anthony Kountz revealed today, they just started working on Episode 19. It’s nice to see it will be once again an episode directed by a woman (Christine Moore).

Premieres of Episodes 14 and 15
A few days before the premiere of Episode 15, Lucas and Justin and the crew had been teasing us with BtS pictures. Cast and crew seemed especially fascinated by the robot (that will make another appearance soon).

The Reboot continues to earn good ratings. Episode 14 (Fish Scaler) managed 7.5 million viewers while Episode 15 (Magnifying Glass) got a whopping 8.05 million viewers (along with a 1.2 rating in the 18-49 demo group).

BtS of Episode 15: Magnifying Glass (via Gabriel Beristain)

Since the news about the crossover episode was officially announced only hours before the premiere of Episode 15, the Hashtag #MacGyver was already trending not even 10 minutes into the episode.

The writer’s crew continued their tradition of live tweeting. Craig O’Neill posted a picture of the “new” MacGyver writer’s office which brought up another round of speculations about a possible season renewal.

Stills, Sneak Peeks and Press Releases
On February 3, we got an additional Sneak Peek for Episode 14 (Fish Scaler) via ET Online. For the Sneak Peeks for Episode 15 (Magnifying Glass), we had to wait until Premiere Day again.

Episode 16: Hook (via SpoilerTV)

We got many official stills for tonight’s Episode 16 (Hook). Sadly, CBS still witholds the previews. As for last Friday’s episode, there was no “real” preview trailer but a video put together with scenes from old episodes (e.g. Chisel or Metal Saw). We got 3 Sneak Peeks, though and therefore got to meet Mama Colton and Billy Colton – and most important: Frog Dog! For now, he’s just an Easter Egg on a painting in the background, but who knows what will happen.

So far, we haven’t seen much for Episode 17 (Ruler) besides the press release and a few stills via Getty Images. The press release for the crossover Episode 18 (Flashlight) was made available on February 17.

Interestingly, in an article about the crossover by Star Advertiser, it’s stated that the show “already has been green-lighted for a second year“. So far it’s unclear if that really means a Second Season or if some information got mixed up (because initially only 13 episodes had been ordered before the Full Season Order back in October). Since all of CBS’s Friday Night Shows are doing very well ratings-wise, it would be a no-brainer to renew them. It’s possible we won’t know before the upfronts in May, though.

Episode 17: Ruler (via SpoilerTV)

According to Broadway World, there will be a rerun of Episode 8 (Corkscrew) on March 3.

aTVfest Appearance
On February 4, Lucas, Tristin and Justin made an appearance for SCAD aTVfest. After doing some interviews, they attended the Q&A for the screening of Episode 14 (Fish Scaler), along with Peter Lenkov and Jeff Downer. Since the event took place on a Saturday, the cast worked through another weekend but still took time to post pictures and videos.

In the interview with FanBolt, Lucas revealed that he was indeed heading to Hawaii for filming. He also acknowledged Richard Dean Anderson’s involvement in the Original Show; stating that he doesn’t know how RDA handled the workload being in every scene while not having an ensemble cast like they do for the Reboot.

SCAD aTVfest Photocall (via Twitter)

Cast and Character News
Central Casting Georgia did several rush calls to get their extras for the crossover episode; e.g. for Tactical Guys and for a “real EMT with experience operating a gurney”. Other casting calls included Asian and Caucasian Men to portray National Guardsmen as well as calls for Agents and “Techies”, Airport Passengers and MIT Students.

As TV Guide Magazine revealed, we will get to know the backstory between Jack and Matty and see more scenes of the Phoenix director in the field.

Peter Lenkov promised weeks ago that Sandrine Holt will be back – and look, she’s listed for Episode 19 on IMDb. Interesting. Although I still think she will show up in the Season Finale along with Nikki and/or Murdoc; especially since Lenkov also revealed that Murdoc will come back this season (and there aren’t that many episodes left to film).

MacGyver Reboot Update #7

Disclaimer: My original guest-post was first published on The MacGyver Project on August 14, 2016. I made some minor changes (e.g. grammar or source corrections, link corrections, additional pictures) before re-posting it on my own blog for safe-keeping.

Filming continues while the cast does the interview and photoshoot cycle at the TCA Press Tour in LA. Also, we got a brand new trailer, new stills and huge billboard ads!

via Getty Images

(Spoiler Alert: To avoid spoilers, I won’t post any revealing pictures, but you will get spoilered by reading this post or by clicking on the links provided!)

 

Work, work, work
Cast and Crew were still filming for Episodes 1×02 and 1×03 last week; shooting on the Historic Oakland Cemetery, in Midtown Atlanta and Downtown near Hardy Ivy Park. Several bypassers caught them filming while walking through the park or were able to watch the set from above. The reboot also got some impressive new lighting installations for the interior sets. For the rest of the week, production seemed to move onto higher grounds. A sky scraper setting for New MacGyver’s work place, maybe?

We finally got some more information about the Ninja shooting, gun-wielding bikini babes on the tank. Turns out they’re actually The MacGyverettes! Of course, we still don’t know what this is all about – Opening Gambit? Mac working undercover on a movie set? Who knows. Seems we’re up for a big surprise (hopefully a good one).

While cast and crew are working long days and weekends, they still find the time to pose for fan pictures or joke around a little bit. Two lucky kids even got to meet the cast on set.

Let the Promo begin: Interviews, Stills and Billboard Ads
On August 9, IndieWire posted an interview with Executive Producer Peter Lenkov about rebooting beloved shows. Lenkov revealed his rules of remakes: 1) Honor the original property. 2) Dive even deeper into the characters that fans love. He said: “The secret sauce is what MacGyver does, and I’m hoping that becomes a thing where people the next day are talking about, ‘Can you believe he did that?’ I think the characters are different, and the original show was very plot-driven. Nowadays, we have to really look at why people are tuning in. They’re tuning in for the characters.”

On August 10, SpoilerTV released more promotional pictures for the Pilot Episode and the main cast.

via SpoilerTV

On August 11, someone spotted a new billboard ad from afar – which didn’t look very promising to me. The up-close-version of a new poster provided by Peter Lenkov on the same day revealed the new tag line: “No man has done more with less“. It looks slightly better up close, but this poster wouldn’t spark my curiosity enough to watch the pilot if I didn’t already have a clue what the show was all about. It also reminds me of the first poster for the Unaired Pilot that shall not be named.

via Peter Lenkov

On the other hand, it’s not so different from other posters for movies or TV shows. Some people might think it’s a little cheesy, but that only fit’s into some of the cheesier episodes of the original show. My problem is mainly that it doesn’t seem to bring across what Original MacGyver made him our favorite TV hero in the first place.

It seems they did invest quite some money for the upcoming promo, though. Besides another version of a huge billboard ad, there are Sightseeing Busses driving through Hollywood announcing the “New Fridays” on CBS. I’m already curious what else is coming.

Let the Promo begin: MacGyver at TCA
On August 11, the cast travelled to LA with Peter Lenkov and Pilot Episode Director James Wan to do the promo rounds at the Television Critics Association (TCA). The visit included a short interview panel, photoshoots, live video interviews (streamed on the official MacGyver on CBS Facebook page), press interviews and posing for pictures with the interviewers.

via Twitter

The panel wasn’t aired, but we got almost everything live on Twitter and shortly afterwards via Online Articles. Peter Lenkov started with a MacGyverism consisting of trying to power up his smartphone through a lemon. Apparently, he should have brought more lemons to make it work. (Or maybe a cactus from the Ugly Duckling episode? Maybe I should try this with my old-school cell phone since it’s not smart and only needs to be charged once a week anyway.)

We had already heard a lot of what was said at the San Diego ComicCon panel last month: It’s “Team MacGyver” now; MacGyver get’s a family and a “bromance”. Also, there definitely will be guns (although it won’t be MacGyver using them.) 

Thankfully, they also shared some new information: Since MacGyver’s first name is not a secret anymore, it will be used frequently in the reboot. They will incorporate the original theme, with a new theme in the main title sequence. They already have a role in mind for Richard Dean Anderson and (still) hope he says yes. Lucas Till admitted he cut his hair because of the negative reactions after shooting the Unaired Pilot (we probably won’t ever know if he wanted it cut or if the bosses made him do it). There’s a nod to Hawaii Five-0 in the pilot and Lenkov hopes they get to do a crossover eventually. The cast still does its homework and watches the MacGyver reruns in their trailers between takes.

via Getty Images

After they made everyone sing “Happy Birthday” to Lucas Till, the cast hit the TCA After Party before travelling back to Atlanta to pick up filming.

Let the Promo begin: The Trailer
On August 12, CBS unexpectedly dropped a new trailer. While it’s again restricted on YouTube for an US-only-audience, CBS TV Studios was nice enough to put it up on their Twitter Account and on Facebook so everyone can see it.

I’ve watched it several times now, but I’m still not sure what to think of it. For the reboot itself, I’m still hovering between excitement, annoyance and bracing myself for disappointment. As for the trailer, there’s a lot of action and we get to see every crew member of “Team MacGyver” – The Brains (MacGyver), The Muscle (Jack Dalton), The Boss (Patricia Thornton), The Best Friend (Wilt Bozer) and The Hacker (Riley Davis). Sadly, the introduction of the whole team in such a short time is why we don’t see very much of New MacGyver himself and what makes him tick. The trailer does peak my curiosity, but it doesn’t “feel” like MacGyver yet.

Cast and Crew News
TVLine provided more information about Amy Acker’s role; revealing her character’s name (Sarah Adler). They also confirmed our suspicions that she’s no damsel in distress that needs rescuing. According to Lenkov, she’s a “female version of George Eads’ Jack Dalton, and she’s pretty badass!”. 

via Proper Sightseeing

Sarah Mays shared a picture on Instagram that revealed her being part of the Make-Up-Departement. Several extras shared their excitement online; e.g. Aina Dumlao (as a character named Andie Lee), Steven Stokes (Background Actor) or Tyler Ellstein (StandIn). Also, the IMDb page is slowly filling up with more names for the first three episodes.

Filming, writing, cutting
Still many more episodes to shoot until December, and the premiere is only six weeks away. SpoilerTV has revealed that Episode 1×04 will be called “Wire Cutter”.

While the writers spend the nights on the studio lot working, Peter Lenkov apparently has had a long weekend of cutting to do. It’s good to see that everyone is so dedicated to this project; their energy sure adds to the curiosity and excitement for the fans of the old show.

MacGyver Reboot Update #4

Disclaimer: My original guest-post was first published on The MacGyver Project on July 24, 2016. I made some minor changes (e.g. grammar or source corrections, link corrections, additional pictures) before re-posting it on my own blog for safe-keeping.

The MacGyver Reboot has been filming the pilot episode for its second week – and stopped by for a visit at the ComicCon in San Diego!

via Instagram

 

(Spoiler Alert: To avoid spoilers, I won’t post any revealing pics, but that doesn’t mean you won’t get spoilered by reading my posts or clicking on the links provided!)

 

Aloha from Set
During the second week of shooting, Executive Producer Peter Lenkov and several crew members continued to grant us a look inside the production. On July 18, Stunt Coordinator Jeff Wolfe posted a video of a stuntman climbing on a military truck driving along the highway with a helicopter following behind the truck. Pretty cool!

On the same day, Lenkov posted several pictures of George Eads in full military gear, looking like a sniper trying to take out the bad guys. Lenkov included a picture with “Aloha” written on the rifle; therefore sending a “little love letter” to his crew filming Hawaii Five-0. On the same day, he posted a short video of Lucas Till as MacGyver cutting some wires while wearing a protection suit. Looks like he just saved the day again by defusing another bomb!

Peter Lenkov introduced us to “Team MacGyver” by posting a picture with Lucas Till (MacGyver), George Eads (Jack Dalton), Sandrine Holt (Patricia Thornton) and Tristin Mays (Riley Davis). Composer Keith Power has started scoring – and apparently needs lots of coffee while doing it.

via Peter Lenkov

 

Tanks, Helicopters and Bikini Babes
On July 19, we got several pictures of a tank on set. A tank that soon got invaded by bikini-clad women in heels while carrying weapons. Hmm. SkyDroneCinema called it a “hot hot day on set” while Lenkov asks the same question that fans have been asking on the MacGyver Online Forums and on the MacGyver Online Facebook Page: “What does this have to do with #macgyver???”

Chris Payne Gilbert sure had fun with this scene, as did George’s StandIn Mikey Leo and model Teresita Vicente (although she later deleted her Instagram picture stating she had been shooting Ninjas all day with a machine gun while wearing a bathing suit). While some fans were as happy as Lucas and George snagging Ninja-Shooting Bikini Babe India Batson for a picture, others were either confused or disappointed; stating that “Baywatch With Tanks” wasn’t the image the show should be going for. I’m still guessing at what this scene should be. Opening Gambit? Weird Dream? Fantasy? Music Video for the Soundtrack? We’ll see in September.

On the same day, Lenkov posted pictures of a helicopter on set while SkyDroneCinema shared a video back from the Estate Party Night Shoot at the Swan House in which we get to know New MacGyver’s fighting style.

via Peter Lenkov

 

MacGyver at Comic Con: Multitool and fun ride
CBS had announced before that they would hand out a new version of the “MacGyver Multitool” and that fans would have the chance to take free rides in electric cars. Lucas and George got to enjoy a ride while doing interviews. It didn’t take long for visitors at Comic Con San Diego to share pictures of their paperclip, most of them complimenting the advertizing.

Interestingly, the MacGyver logo on the electric cars and on the shirts of the Multitool-Promo-Crew is different: The SAK is gone. In the meantime, it has also disappeared from the logos on the official social media accounts. Let’s hope it doesn’t get replaced by a paperclip somehow, because I really liked the old logo. To be honest, I’m a bit disappointed about the change – partly because THIS is the only tool MacGyver really needs, but mostly because being from Switzerland, I was always very proud of a Swiss product so prominently featured in the most favorite TV show of my childhood. Thanks to MacGyver, until my former male classmates had to join the military service at the age of 18 I believed that the official SAK at that time was red (it was actually silver until 2008; now they’re handing out a very different model in green).

 

via CBS Watch! Magazine
MacGyver at Comic Con: Panel and Roundtable Interviews
Besides Lucas Till and George Eads, both Peter Lenkov and James Wan attended the panel and did several interview rounds.

Watching the 30-minutes-panel, the team seems to work very well together and the chemistry between Till and Eads is great (they already turned the people behind the Keysmash Blog Twitter Account into shippers). If you’re interested in the video, you can check it out here. (Sadly, the additional two short video clips they showed have not been made public yet.)

Especially Peter Lenkov and James Wan managed to ease a lot of the worries weighing on us fans. Wan acknowledged that MacGyver is “such a different hero from what we see on TV these days” and stated that they want to retain that spirit of a great role model blessed with intelligence and humanity.

Lenkov promised to include lots of Easter Eggs for fans of the old show. He revealed hoping to involve cast members of the original version and reaching out to Richard Dean Anderson. This admission led to dozens of online articles popping up even before the panel ended; e.g. by Variety, Deadline or the Hollywood Reporter. While it is still unclear what kind of role they would offer to him, an appearance of RDA sure would draw in many fans still wary of a reboot.

While the producers want to honor the legacy and won’t turn Angus MacGyver into some kind of Jason Bourne or James Bond, Lenkov also said that they will update some of the techniques, meaning different shooting styles and editing techniques. Additionally, MacGyver won’t be a “lone wolf” anymore but more of a team player (which has become a standard in almost every modern tv show, but I’m still not sure if this is always a good thing).

via Hollywood Reporter

In the Roundtable Interview posted by Seat42F, Lucas Till admitted having catched some reruns in his youth, but not being an avid fan back then. He’s currently on Season 2 for research purposes. George Eads stated feeling the pressure and the tiring shooting schedule, but also feeling very proud being part of this project. Seat42F shared another Roundtable Interview with Lenkov and Wan, where Lenkov confirmed that they would keep the Opening Gambits. Regarding the challenges about setting the reboot into 2016, Wan and Lenkov stated that while today’s world is very much digital and so many problems are solved with computers,MacGyver still thinks in analog ways. Wan always liked that MacGyver only turned to violence as a last resort; and while the show is set “in a modern world that is so violent“, he wants the hero to keep using his brain for creative problem solving.

In the press junket interview posted by sandwichjohnfilms, Lenkov promised that we will see why Lucas Till is the perfect MacGyver. Lenkov is aware that people are very sceptical of this reboot and wants to retain the soul of the old show while introducing it to a new audience. For Wan, it doesn’t matter what type of film he’s making (action, horror or comedy; low-budget or blockbuster), because for him it’s all about the characters and if the chemistry is right, then “the action and the set-pieces are just the cream on the cake that makes it all the more tastier“.

In a video interview with Entertainment Weekly, Lucas Till repeated his earlier statement in the panel that he would be okay wearing a mullet in the next season.

via CBS

The article by USA Today confirms that the show will keep the voice-overs. During a video interview with ET Online, Lucas had joked about his stunt guy sitting on the sidelines – and he already paid the price for it, as the article reveals: Till (…) has persuaded producers to let him perform a number of MacGyver’s tricky stunts. He sports a band-aid on his finger from a cut suffered grabbing the side of a serving tray at the end of a complicated kick-and-catch move. Let’s hope he realizes that having a stunt person is actually a good thing, no matter how much fun it is to do the stunts yourself – otherwise, RDA might explain (and show) it to him.

Cast and Crew News
During last week, Central Casting Georgia has made several casting calls; e.g. for Ninjas, Korean workers and soldiers, Caracas guards or Asian hackers. They’re also looking for old cars and mopeds and for a hand double – judging by the provided picture, probably for Lucas Till.

Singer George Lott announced on July 19 that he will have a featured cameo role in the show – maybe even for the episode called “Baywatch with Tanks”?

Peter Lenkov shared the information that it’s only 5 more days with James Wan until moving forward onto the next episode. So far, we don’t know yet its title or its director – but the casting calls indicate an Asian setting. Brian Durkin is back on the studio lot writing new episodes, so there will be more casting calls soon.

Back Home
Several times, Peter Lenkov had already posted pictures of the Griffith Observatory back in LA – MacGyver’s home in the original pilot. The speculations and hopes of many fans turned out to be true when Pilot Episode Director James Wan posted a picture on July 23 of the crew shooting at Griffith Park in front of the observatory. New MacGyver is definitely going back to his roots.