In Review: MacGyver (S5 – Ep9) Rails + Pitons + Pulley + Pipe + Salt

When Mac and the team are unable to prevent Department of Defense intel from falling into Codex’s hands

Synopsis: When Mac and the team are unable to prevent Department of Defense intel from falling into Codex’s hands, Mac must scale a vertical cliff using some Pitons, and an old seatbelt to prevent the info’s transmission.


The Story

While on their way home from a mission. Mac, Desi, and Riley are assigned a new mission. Which is to rescue a Marine from Codex and prevent them from being able to transmit valuable data back to their hierarchy. Added to this is the fact that MacGyver’s emotional state is questionable. He is no longer thinking rationally due to the loss of both his father and his best friend Jack Dalton. In short. MacGyver is deliberately placing himself in harm’s way in order to try and prevent harm from coming to Desi and Riley.

This becomes a problem when they have to separate. Mac gives himself the dangerous task of scaling a cliff in order to shut down a communications tower. But because he has no climbing equipment. He has to improvise some using pitons and bits and pieces from a seatbelt. While Mac scales the cliff. Desi and Riley have the dangerous task of retrieving a valuable hard drive from the Codex mercenaries.

When Desi is captured and Mac hears about it over the coms. It falls on Bozer to keep Mac from panicking so that he can safely scale what is left of the cliff.


The Acting

One of the actors that I don’t really give enough credit to because his character initially annoyed me is Justin Hires who plays Bozer. As a character, Bozer started out as an annoying geek that worshipped the ground that MacGyver walks on. He was initially there for comic relief. Thankfully over the course of the 5 years that the show has been airing. Bozer’s character is perhaps the one that has seen the most growth. Indeed, he can still be the annoying geek at times. But he’s leveled up a fair bit and this episode gave Bozer his moment to shine as he uses his friendship to talk MacGyver down from doing something really dumb. The back and forth between Hires and Lucas Till for these scenes is superb.

We also get a guest spot from the brilliant Roger Cross who is massively underused, but hopefully, we get to see him reprise the role in future episodes so the actor gets to add a few more layers to his character. Rodney Rowland gets a little more to do as Finch. A rather sadistic villain who interrogates Desi. Sci-Fi fans will no doubt remember Rowland for his role in ‘Space Above and Beyond’.  Which is a series that was criminally canceled back in the 1990s just as it was getting good.



A solid episode that not only explores MacGyver’s mental state. But also gives us some great MacGyverisms. I loved the train that he builds in order to catch up with Desi. It was reminiscent of one of the classic shows’ best moments, but with the addition of an engine.

Also good was the proper reintroduction of Codex and the fact that this could be an ongoing story arc given that Codex has a power vacuum to fill as it tries to identify a new leader to take things forward. And I think it will likely take a bit more than leftover seatbelts and pitons to get the better of them next time out.

MacGyver (S5 - Ep9) Rails + Pitons + Pulley + Pipe + Salt
  • Story
  • Acting
  • CGI & Stunts
  • 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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