In Review: MacGyver – Compass

Mac and Jack help Mac's close friend from M.I.T. after she fakes her own death to prevent someone from killing her in order to suppress her scientific research.

Synopsis: Mac and Jack help Mac’s close friend from M.I.T. after she fakes her own death to prevent someone from killing her in order to suppress her scientific research.

Review: This episode starts off with the team in a bit of a sticky situation. Mac and Jack have got themselves stuck in a trash compactor and the Star Wars puns come thick and fast and are so obvious they’re not even funny. Unfortunately as they make their escape from the trash compactor Jack breaks his arm.

At this point I’m thinking. Great Jack has broke his arm. He’s out of commission right. And it seems Matty is talking the same language as I am when it comes to separating Mac from Jack, but the writers are having none of it.  Instead they continue to write a character that is more cheesy than a bag of year year old sweaty cheetos. And he continues to be as annoying as ever.

The episode sees Mac visiting his old stomping grounds of M.I.T. At first its to attend his friends funeral, but after a brief time he finds that she is still alive and fighting for her life.

So now Mac and his new One Armed Bandit cheeseball of a partner must uncover the plot to murder Mac’s friend and help her find justice so she can public her scientific findings.

Jack is so out of his element in this story, which only serves to make him more annoying than usual.

This kind of episode would have been the sort of mission that MacGyver would have took on by himself in the classic series, which is in part why it is kind of annoying. Mac’s friend was likeable and much like the old series she was questioning why he’d made the life choices that he had made. This prompts Mac to bring up his Grandfather again, who is a character we got to meet in the classic series on several occasions.

Matty continues to impress and I would really love to see her return in the second season, but think that Jack, Riley and Bozer should be downgraded to recurring characters because given that Mac is supposed to be a self sufficient genius. He is relying a little to much on them for things that he’d have been able to do himself in the classic show.

At present. This series continues to be somewhat of a MacGyver in name only sort of situation and is a virtual clone of Hawaii Five-0, NCIS and any number of other CBS series that involve law enforcement and geeks and eccentrics of some description. And MacGyver should not be that. He should be a more autonomous sort of a character. All the other characters in the show should be of a more recurring nature.

MacGyver - Compass
  • The Good: The hints about MacGyvers past
  • The Bad: The show is called MacGyver not team MacGyver. Enough of the buddy cop stuff already.
  • Story
  • Acting
  • MacGyerithms
  • Incidental Music

Ian Cullen is the founder of and has been a fan of science fiction and fantasy from birth. In the past few years he has written for 'Star Trek' Magazine as well as interviewed numerous comics writers, television producers and actors for the SFP-NOW podcast at: When he is not writing for Ian enjoys playing his guitar, studying music, watching movies and reading his comics. Ian is both the founder and owner of You can contact ian at:
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