MacGyver Reboot Update #113

Production for Season 5 has officially begun! The writers are back in their (virtual) office; working on the scripts.

Virtual Writers Room (via MacGyver Writers)

(Minor Spoiler Alert: You might get spoilered about Season 5 by reading this post and its comments or by clicking on the links provided. For daily news and to join the discussion and/or speculate away, you can find me on Twitter and head over to the MacGyverOnline Forums.)

 

About Episode and Script Numbers
On June 11, the MacGyverWriters Twitter account changed their profile photo and their header. The next day, they tweeted that they’re back in the (virtual) office and working on scripts for Season 5. Pretty exciting, huh.

Because the writers had added a photo to their tweet; indicating that they’re working on Episode 501, some fans got worried that the episodes already filmed for Season 4 will be scrapped. I can’t imagine that to happen since CBS doesn’t have the luxury to dismiss ready-to-air-episodes at the moment. With the numbers of daily new cases flaring up in California and NY having been hit the hardest by the pandemic, it’s unlikely that all TV shows will be able to resume filming as planned.

According to Variety, CBS soap The Bold and the Beautiful halted production just a day after resuming filming. At this point, CBS is lucky if they get all their crime shows to reach just 13 episodes.

Script Title Page for Episode 4×01: Fire + Ashes + Legacy = Phoenix (via Christopher Jon Duddy)

Also, note that there’s a difference between the episode number that states the order of episodes being aired on TV and the production number of the script that states the order of the episodes being filmed. Episodes are not always filmed in the same order as they’re aired; e.g. because a guest star or a location isn’t available otherwise. This can be a bit confusing.

For example, they first filmed Episode 10×07 for Season 10 of Hawaii Five-0. Filming for H50 was often out of order due to some cast members having a reduced schedule or in this case because several scenes of 10×07 were filmed on location in LA. As you can see on The Futon Critic (that lists the production number rather then the episode number), the airing order of the episodes was 1002 (as Episode 10×01), 1003 (as 10×02), 1004 (as 10×03), 1006 (as 10×04), 1005 (as 10×05), 1007 (as 10×06), 1001 (as 10×07) and so on.

Script Title Page for Episode 3×21: Treason + Heartbreak + Gum (via Sarah Downer)

It didn’t happen as often on MacGyver, but it happened three times so far (as you can also see on the photos of the script title pages):

  • Episode 2×03 (Roulette Wheel + Wire) has production number 202 (and vice versa) because Episode 2×03 was filmed before Episode 2×02.
  • Episode 3×21 (Treason + Heartbreak + Gum) has production number 322 (and vice versa) because Episode 3×21 was filmed last in Season 3.
  • Episode 4×02 (Red Cell + Quantum + Cold + Committed) has production number 401 (and vice versa) because they filmed Episode 4×02 as the first episode.

Therefore, we only know that they filmed 414 in January after the hiatus – but we don’t know yet if it was ever supposed to be aired as 4×14 or not. Similarly, the photo tweeted by the writers only shows the episode that will be filmed first this season, so script/production number 501. We don’t know yet if this will be a newly written episode or a script that was initially written as 420 or 421 last season. Due to the guidelines and safety protocols for the pandemic (see further down), they probably had to rewrite both scripts.

Script Title Page for Episode 2×02: Muscle Car + Paper Clips (via Tristin Mays)

All you need to know about Season 5
Here’s what we know so far about the upcoming season (or rather, what we don’t know yet):

  • CBS plans for the show to return in Fall, in the previous timeslot (Fridays, 8pm).
  • There is no further information yet about the number of episodes being ordered.
  • There’s no filming date yet.
  • There is no premiere date yet.
  • Teresa Huang joined the crew as Story Editor.
  • There’s no new key art nor a new production SAK logo yet.

It’s always been very quiet in June regarding production, but it feels worse this year with no additional events. We did get a BtS video of a deleted scene filmed for Episode 4×08 (Father + Son + Father + Matriarch), though.

Skype interview with The Morning Show (Screenshot via Global News)

In a Skype interview with The Morning Show for Global News (Canada) on June 17, Lucas Till confirmed that Monica Macer joined the show as showrunner. He revealed that he was surprised when reading the script for the Season 4 Finale and that we will see more of Mac’s vulnerability and hopefully more character development in Season 5.

How the pandemic could affect Season 5
ICYMI: Hollywood submitted a COVID-19 Reopening Plan from studios, unions and producers to the NY and CA governors; with CBS Studios being a participant. They’re very similar to the Georgia safety measures and might lead to changes not only in production, but also in storylines, guest stars, settings and locations. (Note that the guidelines might change again now that California just implemented a mandatory mask rule.)

A new/old Lucas sighting in May (via Dana Till)

For example, the various guidelines implemented so far recommend to…

  • implement periodic and regular temperature checks and testing
  • enforce physical distancing between cast (e.g. filming scenes with more distance between the actors; actors staying in their trailers until they’re actually needed on set)
  • enforce physical distancing between crew (e.g. with implementing virtual writers rooms and virtual casting sessions)
  • limit hair and makeup services for actors
  • scrap open buffets for meals and coffee breaks
  • reduce the number of fighting scenes and/or intimate scenes
  • reduce the number of Extras
  • reduce the number of scenes being filmed in public locations
  • wear masks if cast and/or crew can’t keep their distance
  • eliminate sharing of crew equipment

Sadly, the pandemic might also reduce the numbers of episodes ordered for TV shows in general – not just because of delayed filming for some shows, but mainly because the safety measures and guidelines will not just increase the cost of production and post-production, but might also slow it down.

Episode 3×17: Seeds + Permafrost + Feather (Official Still via SpoilerTV)

It’s possible they’ll build new indoor sets (e.g. offices for Matty or Russ) so they can film in smaller groups or do stand-alone-scenes (e.g. Matty advising over the phone instead of with the entire team in the War Room).

Regarding storylines, we can assume that Season 5 will have less action scenes and less intimate scenes. If they introduced any new love interests at the end of Season 4, they might simply disappear (but it’s not like we haven’t experienced this before). They might also return to episodes with parallel missions; introducing B and C storylines to ensure smaller mission teams. That’s a pity in my opinion, but I guess reduced and limited work for cast and crew with lesser episodes is better than no work and no episodes at all.

What’s going to happen now?
CBS installed guidelines and safety protocols for the TV shows getting ready to film. Yet, all the planning only helps so much in a global pandemic – see the case of The Bold and the Beautiful above. For now, it’s still a waiting game with CBS findind out via trial and error what works and what doesn’t. Since they’re following the usual timeline as they have in previous seasons, they still seem to opt for a filming start in July.

Episode 3×19: Friends + Enemies + Border (via Noor Anna Maher)

There’s still reruns of Season 3 episodes scheduled for most Fridays; with occasional reruns on Saturdays. Here’s the current schedule:

  • Friday, June 19 (9pm): No Go + High Voltage + Rescue (3×20)
  • Saturday, June 27 (8pm): Treason + Heartbreak + Gum (3×21)
  • Friday, July 3 (8pm): Mason + Cable + Choices (3×22)
  • Friday, July 10 (8pm): tba
  • Friday, July 17 (8pm): tba
  • Friday, July 24 (8pm): tba
  • Saturday, July 25 (8pm): tba
  • Friday, July 31 (8pm): tba

It’s safe to assume that they will also schedule reruns of Season 4; just in time to end with the Season 4 Finale before Season 5 is supposed to start.

Season 3 Rerun Ratings
To recap: The rerun of Episode 3×15 (K9 + Smugglers + New Recruit) on Friday, May 22 got 4.31 million live-viewers with a demo of 0.4. A day later, the rerun of Episode 3×06 (Murdoc + MacGyver + Murdoc) had 1.79 million live-viewers with a demo of 0.1.

Season 3 DVD Release Teaser Photo (via Amazon Germany)

The rerun of Episode 3×17 (Seeds + Permafrost + Feather) on June 5 had 3.835 million live-viewers with a demo of 0.4; once again winning the 8pm timeslot in viewer numbers. Last Friday, the rerun of Episode 3×19 (Friends + Enemies + Border) had 3.810 million live-viewers with a demo of 0.3.

Other MacGyver News
The title sequence for Season 4 was nominated for the AICP Post Awards in the Category “Graphic Design & Animation”. The event was supposed to be held online on June 10 before it was postponed to June 17. Sadly, another project won in this category.

The Season 4 Premiere in the UK (on Sky) was initially set for May 31, then postponed to June 7, and then to June 14. Last time I checked, they tweeted it’ll start at the end of July.

French Season 3 DVD Cover (via fnac)

There’s finally DVD release dates for Season 3 in several countries:

  • July 15 (Australia, New Zealand)
  • July 16 (Germany, Austria, Switzerland)
  • August 26 (France)
  • September 2 (Japan, Part 1)
  • October 9 (Japan, Part 2)

Besides Japan, all versions have the same cover and contain bonus material (Gag Reel and Deleted Scenes), so there’s a good chance that fans living in the US will be able to watch it as soon as the international fans get their hands on it.

The Best of the Best (III) – Top 5 Blog Posts in 2019

Maybe you joined the fandom recently? So you might enjoy to check out “older” stuff about the Reboot?

Hereby, I present you my Top 5 Blog Posts 2019 – a short write-up of the 5 blog posts with the most hits at the end of last year. And I added a few photos in between so it’s all the more fun for you – and maybe a way to get you to check out the full post in case you missed it back when I had originally posted it?

Official Still of the Unaired Pilot (Ron P. Jaffe/CBS)

(Minor Spoiler Alert: You might get spoilered about characters and storylines in Seasons 1 and 2 by reading this post and its comments or by clicking on the links provided!)

 

If you missed the post about the Top 5 Blog Posts in 2017 (all about “deleted” scenes in the pilot script), you can check it out here. If you missed the post about the Top 5 Blog Posts in 2018, you can check it out there.

 

Rank 5 (408 Hits): Looking Back at Season Zero (IV) – The Unaired Pilot: BtS photos Part 2

I had amassed quite a bit of material about the Unaired MacGyver Reboot Pilot over time which led to several blog posts. In this one, I took another opportunity to present some of the BtS photos – for example Lucas Till and George Eads as MacGyver and Lincoln (before he became Jack Dalton in Episode 1×01: The Rising) during a costume fitting.

Lucas Till and George Eads as MacGyver and Lincoln (via Eileen Cox Baker)

 

Rank 4 (434 Hits): Looking Back at Season Zero (I) – The Unaired Pilot: Origins

In this blog post, I wrote about the origins of the Unaired Reboot Pilot. There’s mentions of another unaired pilot (Young MacGyver with Supernatural star Jared Padalecki), a script that wasn’t used, a script that was used for a pilot that never aired and the reboot of the Reboot… As you can see, there’s been a lot going on with this project.

Unaired Pilot Character Description for Angus MacGyver (via SpoilerTV)

On the other hand, this is not all that exceptional for pilot season. The character descriptions alone are worthy of their own blog post. Too bad we might never get to see this pilot that never aired… but I think they had made the right decision to change, switch and tweak things (even though I’m not all okay with what they did with it).

 

Rank 3 (537 Hits): Looking Back at Season Zero (II) – The Unaired Pilot: Promo

It wasn’t much, but the Unaired Pilot had gotten some promo material as well. Three Official Stills, a trailer and social media headers. That’s what I wrote about in this post.

Because CBS decided to reboot the Reboot with a different main cast and a different showrunner, they declared the promotional material to “promo non grata” right after the Upfronts in May 2016. The same day, they erased all their former tweets, posts and previously released promo material for the discarded pilot from their social media accounts.

Promo Poster at the LA TV Screenings (via Peter Lenkov)

Well, it’s the internet after all, so they couldn’t erase it completely. Some media outlets still use the old logo and the old stills. What once was posted online, has a tendency to come back again. I still hope that some day, we’ll see more of it.

 

Rank 2 (643 Hits): You can google it (Part 2): About Samantha/Olivia Cage

A lot of people find my blog by using search engines. I wrote a couple of blog posts about what search terms led to people click on one of my blog posts. Interestingly, a lot of those clicks were due to Isabel Lucas and her character of Samantha Cage (formerly known as Olivia Cage) who was introduced in Episode 2×01 (DIY or DIE).

BtS of Episode 2×05: Skull + Electromagnet (via Isabel Lucas)

Cage was an underdeveloped character that divided the fandom. Yet, even many of the viewers that didn’t like her too much were rather disappointed when she got written out of the show in the middle of Season 2 since all of the “secrets” surrounding her character sort of vanished as well and were never resolved.

I haven’t written yet a review about Samantha Cage, but if you want to know more about her and what people actually typed into Google only to find my blog, you can find the post here.

 

Rank 1 (705 Hits): Looking Back at Season 1 (I) – The Hair (Part 1)

The “Winner” of 2019 is the same post that was on Rank 1 in 2018 as well. When people talk about Original MacGyver, they often mention his glorious hair. There was a lot of “hair drama” surrounding the Reboot. So in this blog post – my first non-update-blog-post back in 2017, actually – I wrote about MacGyver’s hair. And apparently people keep googling for it; finding my blog post.

Lucas Till in June and July 2016

I’m still planning to write Part 2 (and probably even 3) in the near furture, but that might take a while. Real Life responsibilities and stuff, you know.

 

Runner-up posts to give you the Top Ten of 2019:

The Best of the Best (II) – Top 5 Blog Posts in 2018

We still have to wait for about two months for the start of Season 4 and the production is currently on hiatus until January. Also, maybe you joined the fandom only recently? So you might enjoy or have finally some time to check out “older” stuff about the Reboot.

Hereby, I present you my Top 5 Blog Posts 2018 – a short write-up of the 5 blog posts with the most hits at the end of last year. And I added a few photos in between so it’s all the more fun for you – and maybe a way to get you to check out the full original post in case you missed it back then?

Official Still of the Unaired Pilot (via CBS)

(Minor Spoiler Alert: You might get spoilered about characters and storylines in Season 1 by reading this post and its comments or by clicking on the links provided!)

 

If you missed the post about the Top 5 Blog Posts in 2017, you can check it out here. The top posts in 2017 were all posts about “deleted” scenes in the pilot script. The top posts for 2018 are a bit more varied, thankfully.

 

Rank 5 (221 Hits): Looking Back at Season 1 (VI) – The Promo (Part 3: The TCA Portraits)

In this blog post, I wrote about the main cast plus Executive Producers Peter Lenkov and James Wan attending the TCA Summer Press Tour Event back in August 2016.

TCA Summer Studio Photoshoot (via Hollyrood Reporter)

Before the panel, the main cast took part in a photoshoot for the so-called Summer Studio Portraits. Pretty people posing for pretty photos – what else do you need?

Still wish we had gotten a group photo, though *sigh*.

 

Rank 4 (233 Hits): Looking Back at Season 1 (XIX) – The Pilot Script: Deleted Scenes (Part 5)

Funny coincidence: This blog post was already on Rank 4 for the top posts in 2017.

The rebooted Pilot Script for the MacGyver Reboot was written by Executive Producer Peter Lenkov. In this blog post, I wrote about two scenes written into the pilot script that we didn’t get to see in the episode that aired on TV.

One is a conversation between Mac and Jack about Nikki while racing the (stolen) handyman van to the airport. The other one is an excerpt about the missile prop with Team Phoenix sitting around Mac’s firepit.

 

Rank 3 (270 Hits): Looking Back at Season Zero (I) – The Unaired Pilot: Origins

In this blog post, I wrote about the origins of the Unaired Reboot Pilot. There’s mentions of another unaired pilot (Young MacGyver with Supernatural’s Jared Padalecki), a script that wasn’t used, a script that was used for a pilot that never aired and the reboot of the Reboot….

Unaired Pilot Character Description for Angus MacGyver (via SpoilerTV)

Sounds confusing, but is state of the art for pilot season and pretty interesting. The character descriptions alone are worthy of a blog post. Too bad we probably will never get to see this pilot that never aired…

 

Rank 2 (328 Hits): Looking Back at Season Zero (II) – The Unaired Pilot: Promo

The aforementioned Unaired Pilot I just wrote about actually got some promo material as well. This is what I wrote about in this post.

Because CBS decided to reboot the Reboot with a different main cast team and a different showrunner, they declared the promo material to “promo non grata” and erased all their former tweets, posts and previously released Official Stills for the discarded pilot from their social media accounts.

Promo Poster at the LA TV Screenings (via Peter Lenkov)

Well, not they couldn’t erase it completely. Some media outlets still use the old logo and the old stills. What once was posted online, has a tendency to come back again. I really hope that some day, we’ll see more of it.

 

Rank 1 (351 Hits): Looking Back at Season 1 (I) – The Hair (Part 1)

When people talk about Original MacGyver, they often mention his glorious hair. There was a lot of “hair drama” surrounding the Reboot as well. So in this blog post – my first non-update-blog-post back in 2017, actually – I write about MacGyver’s hair. And it was the top post of 2018.

Lucas Till in June and July 2016

Funny thing: At the moment, it’s still the top post of this blog (with almost 700 hits). Maybe I finally find the time to write Part 2 of this “hairy” topic….

 

Runner-up posts to give you the Top Ten of 2018:

The Best of the Best (I) – Top 5 Blog Posts in 2017

I’ve been blogging about the MacGyver Reboot since May 2017. That’s already two years. Thank you for visiting and reading and coming back!

I regularly present statistics about the Reboot; mainly ratings and audience numbers. But I never really presented any info about the blog itself – a habit I actually implemented a long time ago on my first blog in German.

So I present you the Top 5 Blog Posts 2017 – a short write-up of the 5 blog posts with the most hits at the end of 2017. And I added a few photos in between so it’s all the more fun for you – and maybe a way to get you to check out the full original post in case you missed it back then? 😉

Since we have to wait quite a bit for the start of Season 4, you might finally find the time to check out “older” stuff about the Reboot…

BtS picture on set of Episode 1×01: The Rising (via Chris Payne Gilbert)

(Minor Spoiler Alert: You might get spoilered about characters and storylines in Season 1 by reading this post and its comments or by clicking on the links provided!)

 

The top posts in 2017 were all posts about scenes in the pilot script that didn’t make it into the episode. Interestingly, all posts had similar traffic numbers.

To refresh your mind: The rebooted Pilot Script for the MacGyver Reboot was written by Executive Producer Peter Lenkov. An earlier version of the script – the Revised Network Draft (June 20, 2016) – has been available online since October 2016. I wrote several blog posts about “Deleted Scenes” aka scenes that didn’t make it into the Pilot Episode version that was aired on television.

 

Rank 5 (53 Hits): Looking Back at Season 1 (XVII) – The Pilot Script: Deleted Scenes Part 3 (Baywatch With Tanks)

This blog post is dedicated to a Deleted Scene that was actually partially filmed. A member in the MacGyverOnline forums had labelled the spectacle (with gun-wielding Bikini Babes, Ninjas and a tank) as “Baywatch with Tanks” after BtS photos had been posted on social media, leaving us all confused and asking ourselves what this was about.

BtS picture on set of Episode 1×01: The Rising (via Tiko Pavoni)

If you’re lucky enough to have gotten a DVD copy of Season 1 that actually contains Extras, you can watch the filmed scene there. If you want to know more what the scene is about and how it was written in the script, you can read my blog post.

 

Rank 4 (57 Hits): Looking Back at Season 1 (XIX) – The Pilot Script: Deleted Scenes (Part 5)

In this blog post, I wrote about two different scenes in the pilot script. One is a conversation between Mac and Jack about Nikki while racing the (stolen) handyman van to the airport. The other one is an excerpt about the missile prop with Team Phoenix sitting around Mac’s firepit.

 

Rank 3 (59 Hits): Looking Back at Season 1 (XVI) – The Pilot Script: Deleted Scenes (Part 2)

In this blog post, I wrote about two different scenes in the pilot script. One scene got dropped, the other one was reshot and used in the Season 1 Finale instead.

BtS of 1×01: The Rising (via Peter Lenkov)

Both scenes go together, though. The first scene is Mac and Jack in the helicopter with Mac being afraid he’s going to barf due to Jack’s “helicoptering” and digging through the med kit for a vial of Morphine. The second one is Mac in Siberia, dropping a vial into the glacier.

I was actually a bit disappointed about the way the scene in Siberia was re-written – to know why, you can read my blog post.

 

Rank 2 (60 Hits): Looking Back at Season 1 (XV) – The Pilot Script: Deleted Scenes (Part 1)

In the first of my blog posts about the Pilot Script, I wrote about three different scenes. One is about Lake Como, one about Mac running up Griffith Park and some dropped voice-over lines about his relationship with Nikki, and the last is about Mac in the shower.

Eh. Not a shower scene in the way you thought; sorry *lol*. For more information, you can check out the post…

 

Rank 1 (66 Hits): Looking Back at Season 1 (XVIII) – The Pilot Script: Deleted Scenes (Part 4)

In this blog post, I wrote about four different scenes in the pilot script. One is about Mac and Jack heading to DXS, another one about meeting Riley, and one about tinfoil and bikini babes we didn’t get to see.

The last one is about chasing Kendrick and an extended MacGyverism that was dropped, but later used in Episode 1×14 (Fish Scaler).

Episode 1×01: The Rising (via SpoilerTV)

 

Runner-up posts to give you the Top Ten of 2017:

Looking Back at Season 1 (XX) – Early Versions of the Pilot Script

The rebooted Pilot Script for the MacGyver Reboot was written by Executive Producer Peter Lenkov. An earlier version of the script – the Revised Network Draft (June 20, 2016) – has been floating around for a while now. I have been looking at Deleted Scenes in that Draft in several of my blog posts.

Of course, a script isn’t written and “sold” within the first try. There are revisions; lots and lots of revision. There must have been several earlier versions of the script used for filming. On September 18, 2016 – only days before the Series Premiere – SpoilerNet posted a summary of the Pilot Episode Script online. After watching the episode and reading the beforementioned Revised Network Draft, it’s clear that the person posting these spoilers must have had access to an early version of the script that never made it into production.

I’m looking at some of the interesting story or character parts in there.

 

Scene: Lake Como

One big difference in this early script version: Patricia Thornton was never part of the Lake Como mission. It’s Nikki that gives MacGyver all the information he needs to know.

In my opinion, this makes a lot of sense. There’s no need for Thornton to be there. They obviously had enough information concerning the whereabouts and enough time to bring a team and surveillance. In the Pilot Episode, all Thornton does is descending the stairs looking all dolled up and telling MacGyver where the safe is located. Of course, she could have been part of a bigger scheme (e.g. infiltrating the scene days or even weeks before in an undercover mission to gather information), but logic suggests this would have been done by another agent, not by the boss.

Storytelling-wise, it makes sense to include Thornton, though: All the important “players” – aka the series regulars or the main cast – of the new show are introduced within seconds, tied together via MacGyver’s voice-overs. They would have needed another introduction scene for Thornton (see below how it was done in this script version).

 

Scene: Mac and the Gun

As we all now, the Lake Como Mission goes south and Kendrick (in this early script version still an unnamed villain) holds Nikki at gunpoint. What’s happening now might make you scratch your head (or make you searching for your pitchfork): MacGyver pulls his gun.

Uhm. Yeah. That happened. They crazy, no?

I think all Original MacGyver fans will agree here that this makes no sense at all. And if this had stayed in the script, the outrage would have been one of epic proportions.

I don’t know what Peter Lenkov has been thinking while writing this. Maybe he had an idea of a new backstory about MacGyver’s dislike for guns for another episode. Maybe he was high on caffeeine and in dire need of sleep. I don’t think I need to write any further comments on this.

 

Scene: Thornton’s Introduction

In the Unaired Pilot, MacGyver had a best friend from High School called “Gunner”, played by Joshua Boone. I don’t know if they were supposed to be room-mates as well, but it’s clear that Lenkov took that idea, transforming Gunner to Bozer very early on.

The introduction of Patricia Thornton is a nod to the Original MacGyver Pilot. In the Original Pilot Episode, MacGyver lives in the Griffith Observatory and spends time with his “little brother” when his boss arrives in a helicopter that lands directly in front of the observatory.

It doesn’t really make sense that Thornton takes a chopper just to show him a video. A chauffeur bringing her in a limousine would have been a fancy enough choice. I like that they tried to bring in another Easter Egg that only people knowing the Original Pilot would recognize, but I think the way it ended up being filmed worked much better overall.

 

Scene: Inside DXS

Reading the beginning of the next scene, it feels like Lenkov intended to have a big room full of techs bustling around. Of course, such a scene would need lots of Extras and staging and time, so it turned out smaller in the finished episode.

I think it’s a bit unfair that they tried to blame all onto Mac and Jack. The intel was either not sufficient (e.g. what kind of weapon was being sold) or all wrong (e.g. about the hand-scanner or the security detail) – so it was partially Thornton’s and Nikki’s fault as well. Of course, we can’t just blame the “dead” girl.

Looking Back at Season 1 (XIX) – The Pilot Script: Deleted Scenes (Part 5)

The rebooted Pilot Script for the MacGyver Reboot was written by Executive Producer Peter Lenkov. An earlier version of the script – the Revised Network Draft – has been floating around since October 2016.

There was a Production Draft from June 29 and several revisions (Blue, Pink, Yellow and Green) when they did the first table read on July 8.

I’m taking a look at the Revised Network Draft of the Pilot Script from June 20 (2016).

 

Scene: In the Van

This scene takes place when Mac, Jack  and Riley try to catch Nikki before her plane takes off. While Jack is driving the Handyman Van, he and Mac have a conversation:

 

This is the second time in the script that MacGyver states he loves Nikki. In the finished pilot, the L-Word is never mentioned at all.

Episode 1×01: The Rising (via SpoilerTV)

In the Pilot Episode, MacGyver speaks Italian while posing as a waiter at Lake Como. Nikki seems quite impressed:

NIKKI: When did you learn to speak Italian?

MACGYVER: When you said yes to Rome.

I’m pretty sure in all these years, MacGyver had been in Italy before for a mission with DXS, but never felt the need to learn Italian. The next snippet of the conversation in the van kinda reveals what the mention of Rome was all about:

Somehow, Jack strikes me as the romantic type, despite not having much luck in the love departement. I don’t think he would believe in the concept about all women being liars.

Also, it’s not clear if Rome was just a destination for a romantic holiday or if “more” had been meant to happen. Considering that MacGyver and Nikki had been dating for two years and apparently have known each other for three years, it’s possible that maybe he would have asked her to marry him? Seems like a convenient little plot bunny that in case Tracy Spiridakos’ Nikki came back for another episode, there would be some kind of big previously-planned-marriage-proposal-revelation (e.g. Bozer or Jack finding the ring that was meant for Nikki).

 

Scene: Back home

This scene takes place when Riley and Jack come visit MacGyver, who sits at the campfire, watching the photos of him and Nikki burn. Riley admires some of MacGyver’s handywork before she finds the amulet that leads to the first notion of Cairo and sparks the idea of re-naming DXS after the bird rising from the ashes:

It’s possible this scene was filmed and edited out or cut together. I always felt the scene was a bit weird; the dialogue whileRiley snags the amulet from the chair never made much sense to me.

Episode 1×01: The Rising (via SpoilerTV)

Looking Back at Season 1 (XVIII) – The Pilot Script: Deleted Scenes (Part 4)

The rebooted Pilot Script for the MacGyver Reboot was written by Executive Producer Peter Lenkov. An earlier version of the script – the Revised Network Draft – has been floating around since October 2016.

There was a Production Draft from June 29 and several revisions (Blue, Pink, Yellow and Green) when they did the first table read on July 8.

I’m taking a look at the Revised Network Draft of the Pilot Script from June 20 (2016).

 

Scene: At DXS

This scene takes place when Mac and Jack return to DXS after Mac was informed by Patricia Thornton about the bio-weapon being back on the market and Mac collecting Jack who was working on a movie set.

In voice-over, MacGyver talks a bit about DXS and what they do:

It makes sense they shortened the voice-over because revealing too much about DXS (or Phoenix) would have limited the possibilites for upcoming storylines – at least in case they wanted to change direction during the Season while still figuring out what worked for the audience and what didn’t.

After pushing in on the main heroes, Jack tries to enter the building:

To be honest, this snippet puzzles me a little bit. It does nothing but paint Jack being a bit incompetent at times. In the script, it’s mentioned that they haven’t seen each other in about 3 months and haven’t been at DXS either, where there is no mention of that in the episode.

 

Scene: Meeting Riley

This scene takes place right when MacGyver, Jack and Thornton go visit Riley in prison.

Again, it makes sense they didn’t reveal too much about the reasons for Riley’s imprisonement since this would have limited the possibilites for an upcoming Riley-centered Episode (which we got in Episode 1×11: Scissors).

 

Scene: Tinfoil

Mac, Jack and Riley travel to San Francisco to find Kendrick and the bio-weapon. They debate how to find him in the hotel:

Again with the bikini-clad babes. Someone must be fond of those *lol*.

This scene might have been re-written for budget or location reasons. It wasn’t necessary to film a scene that calls for a swimming pool and several extras; escpecially since the bikini beauties were already needed for the “Baywatch With Tanks”-Scene (you can find more about that one in this blog post).

1×01: The Rising (via SpoilerTV)

In the Pilot, the scene is set within a storage room. Sure, the scenery isn’t as nice, but it keeps the focus on the MacGyverism instead of the surroundings and the banter that happens beforehand.

 

Scene: Chasing Kendrick

In the chase for Kendrick, we are robbed of an extended MacGyverism:

We got a bola for Episode 1×14 (Fish Scaler), though.

Episode 1×01: The Rising (via SpoilerTV)

It’s possible that the next scene had been filmed and was cut out in the editing room. On the other hand, it makes sense that in the finished scene, Kendrick stays unconscious. In fact, it would have made more sense if he had been dead after the “incident” with the ladder.

 

Looking Back at Season 1 (XVII) – The Pilot Script: Deleted Scenes Part 3 (Baywatch With Tanks)

The rebooted Pilot Script for the MacGyver Reboot was written by Executive Producer Peter Lenkov. An earlier version of the script – the Revised Network Draft – has been floating around since October 2016.

There was a Production Draft from June 29 and several revisions (Blue, Pink, Yellow and Green) when they did the first table read on July 8.

I’m taking a look at the Revised Network Draft of the Pilot Script from June 20 (2016).

 

On July 19 in 2016, we got several pictures of a tank on set. A tank that soon got invaded by bikini-clad women in heels or boots while carrying weapons. Hmm. SkyDroneCinema called it a “hot hot day on set” while Lenkov asked 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???

BtS picture on set of Episode 1×01: The Rising (via Tiko Pavoni)

As more pictures turned up, we realized the scene also featured Ninjas. There had been a Casting Call by Central Casting Georgia looking for Ninjas on July 18, but seeing them together with gun-wielding “bikini babes” just made this even more surreal.

Casting Call from July 18 (via Central Casting Georgia)

Pictures of the Ninjas posing with the bikini girls would have fit for movies along “MacGruber” or “Sharknado”, so of course we weren’t just puzzled about this, but also concerned – because the material we had gotten the days before looked so much different. It felt like the quality of the production had just dropped a notch.

BtS picture on set of Episode 1×01: The Rising (via Chris Delfin)

Crew member Chris Payne Gilbert sure had fun filming this scene, as did George Ead’s Stand-In 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).

BtS picture on set of Episode 1×01: The Rising (via Chris Payne Gilbert)

While some fans were as happy as Lucas Till and George Eads snagging Ninja-Shooting Bikini Babe India Batson for a picture, others were either confused or disappointed; stating that “Baywatch With Tanks” (thanks for this label, Miasma!) wasn’t the image the show should be going for.

BtS picture on set of Episode 1×01: The Rising (via India Batson)

We kept guessing at what this scene should be for days. Opening Gambit? Weird Dream Episode? Music Video for the Soundtrack? Promo Video for Comic Con San Diego? Maybe another production filming on the same studio lot and Lucas and George posing for fun during a break?

As it turned out, all the excitement and chatter was for nothing because the scene got cut in the end. If you’re lucky enough to have gotten a DVD copy (Season 1 has only been released in Australia and the UK so far), the scene made it onto the DVD Extras.

A look at the DVD Extras for Episode 1×01: The Rising (UK Version, via Attila Vass)

FunFact: A tiny shot of the scene actually had made it into one of the Official Trailers, so it must have been cut in the later stages of the editing process.

Screenshot of one of the Official Trailers (via CBS)

Looking at the script, this scene takes place after Patricia Thornton had recruited MacGyver back into DXS, stating his “vacation” was over.

So while MacGyver was healing (both physically and emotionally), Jack was working as a tech consultant on a movie set. Interestingly, the script never describes much of the movie besides having a young and good-looking starlet with a machine-gun, playing a character being a spy working undercover. I’m curious to know who actually came up with adding Ninjas to the “Baywatch with Tanks” concept.

I don’t think it was hinted at in the Pilot Episode that Mac and Jack didn’t stay in close contact after Lake Como. I’d think that Jack would have stayed at Mac’s side while being treated at the hospital, but it’s quite possible that Jack felt responsible for MacGyver’s girlfriend and valued team member Nikki getting killed and tried to deal with this guilt on his own.

In the version that aired, Mac and Jack are simply reunited without ever talking about the events at Lake Como. While I’m aware that the scene was probably cut for time, this just again made me think that it would have been nice to actually get a two-parter for the Pilot Episode or maybe an episode longer than the standard 40-and-something-minutes.

Scenes like this would definitely have helped to implement the friendship between these two and why they’re still working together. On the other hand, I’m totally fine about dropping the next scene:

The role of “Tiffany” was played by India Batson. I feel bad for her the scene got cut, but besides painting Jack as a bit of a ladies man, it doesn’t do much for moving the plot forwards.

BtS picture on set of Episode 1×01: The Rising (via Lucas Till)

Me being one of the “unlucky” ones without access to the DVD Extras, I can only speculate that the scene was cut for time. I don’t know much about filming budgets, but I’d say this was a rather expensive scene to let go of.

I’m fine with dropping it, though. I’s not really relevant to the plot and rather slows it down. It would have been nice to have Mac and Jack talking about the mission and their guillt, but it wasn’t necessary to do it here. Also, since Bozer is the one being interested in movies and being a director, it would have made much more sense to me if Bozer worked on movie sets (e.g. as an Extra or in catering) to earn some experience in the field. They could have worked that into an episode with MacGyver having an adventure outside of Phoenix like in the Original Show – e.g. there’s weird stuff going on at Bozer’s work place aka the film set he got a little job at; similar to “Cleo Rocks”.

Looking Back at Season 1 (XVI) – The Pilot Script: Deleted Scenes (Part 2)

The rebooted Pilot Script for the MacGyver Reboot was written by Executive Producer Peter Lenkov. An earlier version of the script – the Revised Network Draft – has been floating around since October 2016.

There was a Production Draft from June 29 and several revisions (Blue, Pink, Yellow and Green) when they did the first table read on July 8.

I’m taking a look at the Revised Network Draft of the Pilot Script from June 20 (2016).

 

Scene: In the helicopter

This scene takes place when Mac and Jack are in the helicopter, chasing the bad guys transporting the bio-weapon in the truck to its destination.

The vial of morphine won’t be mentioned again until towards the end of the episode – you’ll see why further down.

 

There is some more banter and action first before Riley informs them where the (blue) truck is headed:

Original MacGyver was often annoyed by some of Jack’s comments. This scene here doesn’t feel very MacGyver, though. Original MacGyver might have thought Jack was naive and and gullible, but I don’t think he would have ever implied that Jack was mentally impaired.

Also, rebooted Mac and Jack have known each other for years. It seems weird that Jack suddenly finds MacGyver’s fear of heights inconvenient and something that Mac should overcome right now, even though it might have been a topic before.

 

Scene: Siberia

This scene takes place right after MacGyver and Jack secured the bio-weapon and before everyone meets at MacGyver’s and Bozer’s place; choosing a new name for DXS.

 

This scene was actually filmed, but got dropped in the editing room – probably for time. I don’t think they had already the idea of “recycling” this for a later episode.

BtS of 1×01: The Rising (via Peter Lenkov)

They reshot the Siberia Scene for the Season 1 Finale (1×21: Cigar Cutter), but without any voice-overs because the trip to Siberia happened under different circumstances. I would have actually preferred to see it here in the Premiere Episode. It feels very Original MacGyver; more than the version filmed for the Season Finale.

It shows the rebellious side of MacGyver; the side that is willing to breaking the rules to prevent potential disaster. In the Season Finale Version, Jack and Matty knew what MacGyver was about to do; this was probably even sanctioned by Phoenix and Oversight.

BtS of 1×21: Cigar Cutter (via Peter Lenkov)

Looking Back at Season 1 (XV) – The Pilot Script: Deleted Scenes (Part 1)

The rebooted Pilot Script for the MacGyver Reboot was written by Executive Producer Peter Lenkov. An earlier version of the script – the Revised Network Draft – has been floating around since October 2016.

Judging by social media pictures by cast and crew, we know this wasn’t the final version. There was a Production Draft from June 29 and several revisions (Blue, Pink, Yellow and Green) when they finally started the table read on July 8.

I’m taking a look at the only version of the Pilot Script that’s available to me at the moment – the Revised Network Draft from June 20 (2016).

 

Scene: Lake Como

This scene takes place at Lake Como, after MacGyver entered the villa and donned his camera glasses, right before he meets up with Patricia Thornton.

I think this is an interesting little snippet. Many viewers complained on social media that MacGyver came off as too cocky and James-Bond-like. And I think that was the main reason that many fans of the Original Show stopped watching. I think more scenes like this one could have helped preventing that.

Interestingly, this is a theme in most of the Reboot-FanFiction as well – MacGyver is not a ladies man; usually clueless when women flirt with him.

 

Scene: MacGyver running

This scene happens right after the Opening Credits.

There are no voice-overs in the finished scene. I don’t know if they ever made them and decided to take them out or not. They’re not necessary for the scene in my opinion. On the other hand, I never really felt the love and betrayal between MacGyver and Nikki. Maybe something like this would have helped.

 

Scene: MacGyver taking a shower

This scene happens after MacGyver’s run and talking with Bozer and before the shower scene.

This little snippet isn’t that important to the story, but it gives us a bit more insight into who MacGyver is. Also, the set of MacGyver’s house is really interesting. I would have liked to see more of it – especially since we saw Bozer’s room in Episode 1×08 (Corkscrew), but never got to see MacGyver’s room.

 

After the Flashback comes this little snippet:

I’m curious if this was written with another specific storyline in mind. It could also be some “leftovers” from the Unaired Pilot Script written by Paul Downs Colaizzo. The Unaired Pilot Script had MacGyver rescuing himself after being held prisoner for five years in Pakistan by the Mazzari, a terrorist group. It’s possible that Colaizzo’s script implied MacGyver being tortured.

If this was added by Lenkov, it could have been part of MacGyver’s childhood story; e.g. how his mother died. I’m thinking car accident – and the idea of MacGyver being with her when she died. But I guess this might have been too dark as a backstory – the most recent episodes proved again that the show is seen as light entertainment for a Friday evening.