There’s a bit of noir, and a bit of a fun ride, in this week’s installment of Magnum…
First up is Old Acquaintance, written by Jill Donner, this episode had an airdate of 3 October, 1985, and may have heavily influenced the writers of Ace Ventura…
Thomas (Tom Selleck) is delighted to hear from a former high school acquaintance, Goldie Morris (Lee Purcell), who comes to him for help… She wants him to find a kidnapped dolphin. Seriously.
It seems Goldie is a bit of an activist, and she originally had planned to have the kidnapped dolphin released into the sea, but the thugs she hired to help carry out the actual incident, have plans of their own, and while they set-up a meet to propose a ransom, they have a far more nefarious plan.
And it ties in with the b-plot of the episode this week, there is a meeting of some world leaders arriving in Hawaii to meet with President Kole (Brock Peters), the tyrannical leader of a fictional African country. He has repressed his people, and lives off their work, Higgins (John Hillerman), attending the event only as a service to the British Empire, in a completely non-official capacity, is openly disparaging of him.
The kidnappers are going to use the dolphin to make a political statement, and perhaps even an assassination attempt on Kole, unless Thomas, Goldie, Rick (Larry Manetti) and T.C. (Roger E. Mosley) can find the mammal before then…
There is also a lot of fun discussions about Emily Dickinson.
Overall, a very enjoyable episode.
The Kona Winds, by Chris Abbott is more of a noir episode, and done very well. It aired on 10 October, 1985.
Thomas is wandering the coast line watching the oncoming storms, caused by the Kona winds, and witnesses a woman, Lauren Henderson (Cynthia Sikes) attempt to commit suicide by tossing herself into the raging ocean. Thomas, of course, dives in after her, and saves her.
When he has her safely ensconced back on the estate, she tells a tale about her husband, Sam (Frank Converse). She says she overheard an argument between him and one of his business partners about the insurance on one of his many hotels on the islands. It became so heated, that Sam murdered him.
Now Lauren lives in fear of her husband, and turns to Magnum for solace, and assistance.
But like all good noirs, there are twists and turns, and things may not always be what they seem on all sides, and Thomas could be in serious trouble, when he crosses the line and begins an affair with his client.
Things become more troubling for him, however, as the storms pick up, and he starts to dig a little deeper into what he has been drawn into, until he’s not sure who to trust, and his own life may be in jeopardy…
A different sort of episode for Thomas, but it works really well within the context of the show, and tropes of the genre.
Until next week, Aloha!