Magnum, p.i. (1981) – The Sixth Position and Ghost Writer


Oh Hawaii…

This week Thomas (Tom Selleck) deals with ballerinas, and writers…

First up is The Sixth Position which originally aired 17 December, 1981, and was written by Babs Greyhosky. Thomas is hired to serve as the bodyguard for a ballerina, Kendall Chase (Andrea Marcovicci), someone T.C. (Roger E. Mosley) is a huge fan of.

Despite a rocky start to their relationship, Thomas and Kendall form a quick bond, just as she finds herself between gun sights. At the same time, Thomas has been asked to work on an additional case, which he initially doesn’t want, but the more he becomes involved in Kendall’s case, the more he begins to think the two are connected and that she may be nothing more than a pawn in a huge game of misinformation.

Seeking assistance, Thomas turns to “Mac” McReynolds (Jeff MacKay) and comically bribes him with doughnuts, something they both agree shouldn’t work, but does. It’s then that Thomas gets a real glimpse of what is going on, and that the Cold War is very alive in Hawaii, with both the CIA and hired killers looking to make sure that Kendall reveals information.

Not quite my fave episode, it was easy to see that Thomas and Kendall would end up having the whole opposites attract thing, I do like the way the second case dovetailed nicely into the other one, and was actually just a ploy to occupy Magnum. It was also really cool to have T.C.’s character revealed a little bit more with his love for ballet, no matter what looks Thomas and Rick (Larry Manetti) gave him.


The second episode, Ghost Writer, was written by Caroline Elias, and originally screened Christmas Eve, 1981. This one is pretty enjoyable, Thomas is hired by a ghost writer, Virginia Fowler (Patch Mackenzie) when her room is ransacked and the notes she’s taken for her latest book are stolen. It seems Fowler is working on an autobiography of the reclusive Harold W. Farber (Elisha Cook in his first Magnum appearance. He would later return as the semi-recurring character Icepick).

Things become suspect fairly quickly, and escalate when an older woman gets a look at Farber, and says it’s not him. There’s something else going on here, and Thomas begins to piece it altogether, and sees that Fowler’s book will just be an alibi, as the real Farber may in fact, already be dead. And T.C. is somehow involved, though he doesn’t quite know what’s going on, he just knows he’s not supposed to go to the Farber building, but Thomas hopes their friendship will get his buddy there when Magnum needs him.

There are a lot of humorous moments in this episode, especially the butler, and the dining room which looks more like it’s ready for open heart surgery, something Thomas comments on. Cook’s performance is enjoyable, and it’s very easy to see why the series brought him back as Icepick.

Also, having just returned from Hawaii, I love looking at things, and yes, they have changed over the past 30-odd years but there are still recognizable spots, and just watching it I get all granny in a way I never did before, because now I look at the show, and not only see familiar faces, but places as well.








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