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Cleo Rocks

Original Air Date: February 6, 1989
Episode #073

MacGyver visits a theatre to watch a rehearsal for Cleo Rocks, a new rock opera starring his aspiring actress friend, Penny Parker. After the cast practices one song, Jacques La Rue, the director, rolls out in a wheelchair and gets into an argument with Benjamin Wintergreen, the owner of the theatre, over the growing expenses of the production. Penny goes to greet Mac, who praises her performance. As rehearsal resumes, Mac saves Penny from a falling sign. Jacques and Penny reveal that several such accidents have happened recently. Backstage, Mac's concern for Penny's safety increases when someone leaves her dead roses. Not much later, Penny reports being chased by a mysterious man, and Mac finds a threatening note left with Penny's picture. Mac asks Pete Thornton to investigate Wintergreen; Pete discovers that the man insured Cleo Rocks, and he'll gain a lot of money if the show is unable to open. Looking for evidence, Mac is stunned when the note reveals the real villain: the assassin Murdoc. After receiving a phony message from Penny, Pete hurries to the theatre and is captured by Murdoc. As part of his elaborate scheme for revenge, Murdoc locks Pete in a cage suspended over a pool of water. Penny arrives at the theatre to meet Jacques for dinner, but Mac finds her on the stage, and Murdoc's voice is heard, taunting them. Mac sends Penny to hide in her dressing room. Jacques La Rue finds her and reveals that he is really Murdoc. Tricked into going to the balcony, Mac can only watch as Murdoc appears on stage and disappears through a doorway with Penny. Climbing into a tunnel, Murdoc ushers Penny into the room where Pete is being held captive. Mac hurriedly follows, but outside the door, a barrier slides down sealing Mac in. Murdoc activates a switch and the floor starts to rise; however, if Mac opens the door, Pete's cage will be dropped into the water, and he'll drown. Murdoc drags Penny down another tunnel and leaves Mac to make a choice. Pete tells Mac to save himself and open the door; Mac takes a moment to deactivate the release switch and save them both. Leaving Pete to pry open the lock, Mac goes after Murdoc. When he stops to untie Penny, Murdoc steps from the shadows with a gun. Penny kicks the gun out of his hand, and Mac and Murdoc fight. Fighting dirty, Murdoc gets the upper hand, but Mac is able to shock him with a broken electrical cord. Murdoc falls into the pool. Later, Mac isn't surprised to learn that Murdoc's body was not found.


MacGyver: I grew up an only child, no brothers or sisters. But somehow Penny Parker brings out the big brother in me. She's the kind of girl who needs . . . well, looking after.

"I couldn't resist her invitation to drop in on a rehearsal. Besides. It never hurts to get a little culture in your life." Mac, stopping to examine a poster of a dancing, bikini-clad Cleopatra

Newton: You have to let me feel my motivation.
Jacques: "Motivation"? Your only motivation, messieur, is to keep your job.

Penny: Well, what'd you think? Was I okay? I was a little slow coming out of the esophagus.
MacGyver: Sarcophagus.
Penny: And I missed that darn kick again.
MacGyver: No, Penny, you were terrific. Believe me. I'm very--
Penny: Surprised?
MacGyver: Impressed.

MacGyver: I'm proud of you. I'm sure there was a lot of competition for this part.
Penny: I don't know. Right out of the blue, they called my agent, Sergio. Don't tell me it doesn't pay to have good representation.

"You call that casting? The only experience she's ever had is delivering singing telegrams!" Wintergreen, about Penny

Jacques: Penny is better than a star: she is a discovery.

MacGyver: It doesn't sound like this place is too safe.
Penny: Oh, there's more to it than that. I mean, some of the stage crew's even saying that the show has a jinx on it. Poor Jacques. Mr. Wintergreen isn't making it any easier on him.
MacGyver: Your concern for old Jacques wouldn't be a little more than professional, would it?
Penny: Well . . . we've been working so closely . . . He's such a fascinating man.
MacGyver: Penny, I thought you swore off show biz relationships.
Penny: Oh, this isn't show business. It's theatre.

Penny: Flowers. Oh, MacGyver. You didn't.
MacGyver: "Oh, Penny" - you're right. I didn't. Must be another secret admirer.

Jacques: Monsieur MacGyver, you and Penny are very good friends, yes?
MacGyver: Well, we're kind of like family, actually.

Jacques: Penny . . . is a very special girl. We must take special care of her, non?
MacGyver: Yeah, well, she does take some looking after, that's for sure.

MacGyver: I'm a friend of Penny Parker's.
Wintergreen: Oh, yeah. Little Miss Discovery.

MacGyver: Penny said that a lot of strange things have been happening around here lately. You ever think of checkin' 'em out?
Wintergreen: That's the stage door. Why don't you check that out?

Penny: Mr. Wintergreen, I think it's time you and I cleared the air.
Wintergreen: What do I look like? A catalytic converter?

Wintergreen: Please don't start with the waterworks. You want to make it in show business? Toughen up.

Penny: You wait 'til opening night. I'm gonna knock their socks off.
Wintergreen: No. No, you're not. And you wanna know why? Because you're an amateur. And nobody pays to see amateurs.

Penny: I'm a professional, Mr. Wintergreen. I'm going to prove it to you on that stage.
Wintergreen: It'll make me happier if you prove it at the box office.


Penny: I can't leave the show. Besides, theatre people are always playing jokes like this on each other.
MacGyver: Oh, fun people.

"Believe me, if I could find a theatre elsewhere big enough for my production, I would take my Cleo elsewhere today." Murdoc, as Jacques, trying to cast suspicion on Wintergreen

Wintergreen: Want me to call the police? What am I gonna tell 'em? "My leading lady has been assaulted by a poem"? Doesn't even rhyme!

Penny: I don't think anybody's ever believed in me the way you do. Except maybe MacGyver.
Jacques: You care about him very much, yes?
Penny: Sure. He's like . . . a big brother.

Jacques: You are very beautiful, Penny. Your every movement brings my music to life.

Pete: Murdoc . . But you're dead.
Murdoc: Would you care to join me?

Murdoc: You've made this far too easy for me, Pete.
Pete: Well, I guess I didn't expect to come up against a dead man, did I.
Murdoc: You know me better than that.

Murdoc: How long have we been playing this game now, Peter? What is it - ten? Fifteen years?

Murdoc: Quick. Neat. Untraceable. Took great pride in my work, made a very good living out of it. Had a lot of fun . . . until you and your friend MacGyver came along and spoiled the party.

Pete: The common cockroach. And that's what you are.
Murdoc: Are you calling me common, Pete?

"I've anticipated everything MacGyver's creative little mind can come up with." Murdoc, explaining that he's spent a long time plotting the details of his revenge

Murdoc: Don't worry, Pete. I'm not going to kill you . . . Nope. I'm saving that job for MacGyver.

"What's the matter, MacGyver? Can't find your mummy?" Murdoc, via a radio after Mac looks inside the sarcophagus

Penny: There's some kind of madman out there!
Jacques: A madman?
Penny: Yes. He's after MacGyver. And he's already got Mr. Thornton someplace.
Jacques: No, no, no, Penny. You are wrong. I am not mad . . . [He drops the French accent.] . . . I'm just very, very determined.

Murdoc: Home sweet home.
Penny: You actually live here? It's so dark and creepy.
Murdoc: Well, when you look like I do, one learns to welcome the dark.

Penny: Please. Jacques La Rue wouldn't do this.
Murdoc: There is no Jacques La Rue.
Penny: Yes, there is! He writes beautiful music, and he's sensitive and charming and romantic...
Murdoc (quietly): You brought it out in me, Penny.

Murdoc: Before I met you . . . I didn't know what it was like to smile, just for the sheer joy of it . . . If only we'd met in another lifetime.
Penny: You're gonna kill my best friend, and you're saying that--
Murdoc: I love you . . . That's exactly what I'm saying.
Penny: MacGyver's right. You are insane!

Murdoc: So. Pete's dead. I knew you had it in you, MacGyver. Underneath it all, we're so much alike. I'm almost sorry to see it end.

MacGyver: After all this, you're not just gonna shoot me, are you?
Murdoc: Well, MacGyver, I know it's not very creative, but it gets the job done.

MacGyver: Thanks for your help back there.
Penny: I knew I could get that kick right. Jacques would've been so proud.
[Penny, Mac, and Pete look at the pool where Murdoc fell in.]
Penny: Oh...

MacGyver: That was his specialty. Being somebody else.
Penny: It's almost sad. You really think he's dead?
MacGyver: I think it's a matter of wishful thinking on my part.

"You might want to hang on to that. I think you're gonna need it soon." Mac, returning the star from Penny's dressing room door

Fraternity of Thieves

Original Air Date: February 13, 1989
Episode #074

While MacGyver follows a Phoenix Foundation employee suspected of selling information, the buyer, a man calling himself Papillon, notices. As Mac escapes from Papillon's men, Papillon shoots the employee. At the Foundation, Pete retrieves a microchip from the package that Papillon was to have received. The chip contains schematics for the RAINS satellite linkage system, but they are useless without the plans for the other parts. While inspecting security, Colonel Collins explains that the RAINS technology would make virtually any plane invisible to radar. Meanwhile, Chaz Gordon is appointed by Papillon to complete delivery of the schematics, and he meets with his computer genius friends - including Michael Thornton, Pete Thornton's son. Michael copies Pete's security pass to gain access to the lab. After hackers destroy the personnel files for the traitorous employee, Mac visits the university looking for information. Soon, Mac reports that five former members of the campus computer club have all been employed by the companies that are working on the RAINS system. After learning that Michael was in the club, Pete is devastated. Pete and Mac catch Michael in the lab taking pictures of the plans. Michael agrees to set up a meeting to lure Papillon into the open. However, Papillon sends a fake to the meeting, and Pete spots the man concealing a weapon. Pete rushes over to stop him and another of Papillon's men abducts Michael at gunpoint. Colonel Collins is able to track down Papillon's identity, and Mac and Pete travel to Papillon's place. Pete goes to stop the henchman from shooting Chaz and Michael, while Mac stops Papillon from completing the sale of the RAINS information. Later, Michael learns from his lawyer that he will have to serve time, but Pete promises to stand by him.


MacGyver: Technology has just about taken over everything in the world today. But no matter how computerized and mechanized things get, people are still the most important part of any operation - and the weakest link.

"Whoever we're dealing with sure has a flair for the dramatic." Pete, after the microchip is disguised on a butterfly

"I guess what they say is true: it's never too late." Pete, telling Mac how he and Michael have reconnected

Chaz: Shot? By whom?
Papillon: FBI, CIA, NSC, DXS - who knows. It's all the same alphabet soup.

MacGyver: Just what is this operation?
Colonel: The details are classified. Strictly need-to-know.
MacGyver: Yeah, I've heard that before, Colonel, and right now I need to know.

MacGyver: I mean it, Pete. I've got to know whether this involves something I can sleep with.
Colonel: What can't you "sleep with," Mr. MacGyver?
MacGyver: Shady, hip-pocket political scams, for one.
Colonel: RAINS is not in that category. You can take my word on it.
MacGyver (after a pause): Sorry. Not good enough.

Pete: A virus? When is somebody going to come up with a computer vaccine? It's an epidemic! We're all at the mercy of these hackers.
MacGyver: Oh, these are no hackers, Pete. This is professional sabotage.

Pete: It's these computers, I'm telling you. Give me the good old days when we still had paper, books . . .
MacGyver (realizing something): That's a good idea, Pete. Good one.

"Library? Yeah, that was a good idea." Pete, figuring out what his idea was

Pete: I guess I did screw up being a father, but, uh . . . maybe we could make it as friends now. What do you think?
Michael: I'd like that.

"So, who is it, kid? The Soviets? A little glasnost for your comrades?" Colonel Collins, questioning Michael

Pete: Why, Michael? WHY?!
Michael: The price was right.
Pete: This isn't about money, is it?
Michael: Yes . . . at first, anyway.

Pete: No deals! If Michael is going to help us clean this up . . . it's going to be because he wants to do the right thing. And because he has to be responsible for what he's done.

Pete: Michael, maybe you did it for the money. Maybe it was because you wanted to hurt me. But what I don't understand is how you lost the ability to know right from wrong.
Michael: Is there a right and a wrong anymore, Dad? The world you operated in wasn't black and white.

Michael: It all started out so simple. Nobody was supposed to get hurt. It was cloak and dagger - a game! It was just like Dad used to play.
MacGyver: It was no game, Michael. No matter how you try to rationalize it, you sold out your country and everything your father believes in. You hurt him.
Michael: How do you hurt a stranger?
MacGyver: Okay. So Pete's not some kind of Norman Rockwell super-dad. And maybe he wasn't there twenty-four hours a day whenever you needed him . . . but that doesn't mean he didn't love you.

Chaz: I trusted you.
Papillon: Oh, trust is such a worthless commodity. Now security, that's priceless.

"I think you just missed your flight." Mac, to Papillon after the buyers' helicopter leaves

MacGyver: A parent can only take so much responsibility.
Pete: I wish it was that simple . . . I think we're all responsible, and I think some of us - maybe a lot of us - have been sending out the wrong signals.

The Battle of Tommy Giordano

Original Air Date: February 20, 1989
Episode #075

MacGyver waits outside a courthouse with an eight-year-old boy named Tommy Giordano. Tommy's mother and father, Mary Ruth and Richard, are inside learning who gets custody of Tommy after the divorce ends their troubled marriage. The parents and their lawyers emerge from the building, and Mary Ruth says that Tommy will live with her. Richard suggests that they call a truce for Tommy's sake, and Mary Ruth agrees. However, Richard asks his uncle, Joe Catano, for help in getting his son back. Joe agrees to arrange something. Not much later, as Mary Ruth and Tommy are at the aquarium with MacGyver, two men grab Tommy. Chasing after them, Mac sees the men hand Tommy to Richard as they leave. Since Mary Ruth has only had custody for one day, the police say that there's nothing they can do without the proper paperwork. At Uncle Joe's estate, Richard tells Tommy that they get to take a trip together as part of the divorce settlement. Wanting to say goodbye, Tommy calls Mary Ruth, revealing that they're going to Joe's ranch in Canada, but Richard hangs up before Tommy can say more. At the Phoenix Foundation, Pete Thornton tells Mac and Mary Ruth that an investigation of Mary Ruth's family - done for security when she was hired - showed that Richard's Uncle Joe is the undisputed head of the Catano crime family. Mac and Mary Ruth go to Joe's estate, but Tommy and the others are gone. An agent informs them that Joe is in hiding because there is a price on his head. Mac volunteers to go to get Tommy, but Mary Ruth must go as well, or Mac will be guilty of kidnapping. Outside Joe's ranch, Mac and Mary Ruth see two men watching and realize that they must be hit men. They follow the men back to a motel and rent the room next door. Mac taps into their phone and listens to Joe's traitorous assistant Paul give instructions on posing as delivery men. Mac leaves Mary Ruth to call the authorities as he stows away on the baddies' van. At the ranch, Mac stalls the hit men and sneaks to the house, where he saves Joe from Paul. Realizing that there's trouble, Richard starts to leave, and Joe, furious that Richard would abandon Tommy, punches him out. Mac and Joe hide in the basement with Tommy; they knock out their pursuers, but a third one appears at the top of the stairs. He is knocked unconscious by Mary Ruth, who hurried to the ranch after leaving the motel clerk to call for help.

Read the extended summary of this episode for more details!


MacGyver: Tommy Giordano was a good friend of mine. Had been since the first time I gave him a bath and got wetter than he did.

MacGyver: See, you've gotta live somewhere, so somebody has to have custody. They both understand that.
Tommy: Is that a rule?
MacGyver: It's better. It's a fact.
Tommy: Like two part hydrogen, and one part oxygen, and it never changes? That kind of fact?

Richard: I pay you a fortune and you can't even get me visitation rights.
Lawyer: You verbally abused your wife for nine years, then you started in on the judge, Dr. Giordano. You didn't give me a lot to work with.

[Richard asks Mary Ruth for a truce, for Tommy's sake.]
Lawyer: You did the right thing.
Richard: Go back to law school. Jerk.

Uncle Joe: Pauli, you remember Richard Giordano, huh? He used to be my nephew until he gave me the bum's rush.

Richard: What can I say? I was wrong. But I want my son.
Uncle Joe: That's the first human thing I ever heard you say.

Uncle Joe: Even when you were a kid you manipulated, played on people. Always told 'em what they wanted to hear until you got what you wanted, then threw 'em away like a used-up piece of Kleenex.
Richard: I'm sorry I bothered you.
Uncle Joe: Hold it. I didn't say I wouldn't help. I just wanted you to know I was wise to you.

Mary Ruth: I've never really been alone. All those years of Richard telling me I couldn't do anything . . . After a while you start to believe it.
MacGyver: I think it's about time you start believing in yourself.

Policeman: In a few days, when you have the right documents--
MacGyver: What good are documents if you give 'em time to disappear?
Policeman: I'm sorry. Right now this is a civil matter.

Tommy: I haven't got my clothes, or a suitcase, or anything.
Richard: We'll get some new ones.
Tommy: What's Mom gonna do?
Richard (after a pause): I guess she'll be with MacGyver.

Mary Ruth: It's just like always. Richard's winning again. He's not doing this because he wants Tommy. He's doing this because he can't stand to lose.

Kaplan: I wish there was something I could do to help, but my hands are tied.
MacGyver: Yeah, well mine aren't. Any law that says I can't go after Tommy?
Kaplan: Yeah. It's called kidnapping. Takes a parent or legal guardian to bring the boy across the international border. Otherwise you're the one facing the charges.

Tommy: How come those guys have guns, Uncle Joe?
Uncle Joe: Some people work hard all their lives gettin' things, and other people work hard all their lives stealin' what you worked for.

Uncle Joe: I only met your mother once. Tell me about her.
Tommy: Well, sometimes she's funny, and we have a real good time. But when Dad's around, she cries a lot. I think she's smart, but don't tell Dad that. He doesn't think so. That's 'cuz she messes up when Dad's around. He makes her nervous.
Uncle Joe: I think I'd like her, your mother.

"Whatever happens in there, back me up." MacGyver, to Mary Ruth as they go in to talk to the motel clerk

MacGyver: Room ten, please.
Clerk: They're all exactly alike.
MacGyver: Oh, not on the scale of the great cosmos, they're not. We want ten.
Clerk: Why?
MacGyver: Numerology, man!
Clerk: Numerology?
MacGyver (sighs, as if he's trying to be patient): The karma of any number that's not divisible by two or five just puts us into a cosmic tailspin, totally.
[He turns to Mary Ruth.]
MacGyver: Right, babe?
Mary Ruth: Oh . . . right. The wrong number really messes with my polarity.

Clerk: Are you two from California?
MacGyver: For sure.

Uncle Joe: All he wants is to be a kid. Your kid. What'd you want him for?
Richard: Because he's mine.
Uncle Joe: But he's not a silk tie, or an Alpaca sweater. He's a kid, Ritchie. A kid.

MacGyver: I'm gonna have to get in their room. I'll need five minutes.
Mary Ruth: What?
MacGyver: You're gonna have to get 'em out of there.
Mary Ruth: How? What'll I say?
MacGyver: Whatever it takes. Tell 'em the car won't start, that you need help, anything.
Mary Ruth: I can't!
MacGyver: You have to.

Uncle Joe (to Tommy): I figured out maybe you'd like it if Uncle Joe put you on a plane tomorrow. Sent you back to see your mother.

[Mary Ruth makes noise to distract the guys.]
Hit Man #1: What's that?
Hit Man #2: Either a fight, or maybe somebody's really in love, man.

"Nice going, Ace." Mac, to Mary Ruth after her stunt worked

Mary Ruth: Thanks to you, I've done things I never dreamed I could do.
Pete: Like polishing off a hit man with a skillet?

The Challenge

Original Air Date: February 27, 1989
Episode #076

Outside a print shop, a young man named Ray Collins is accused of trying to steal a van. Ray flees to the Challengers Club, where Mac is helping to repair some weight-lifting equipment. Mr. Larson, the owner of the print shop, arrives with the police, and they take Ray to jail. Booker Wilson and his wife Cynthia, who run the Challengers Club, get Ray released into Mac's custody. Two of Larson's employees find Ray outside the Club and threaten him; he runs. Booker and Larson attend a city council meeting to discuss needed funding for the Club. Booker explains that the Club helps kids with nowhere else to go, but Larson argues that it is a haven for troublemakers and should be shut down. Mac finds Ray and convinces him to attend the council meeting. Larson points Ray out as a thief. Ray tells the council that he went to the print shop looking for a job, but Larson turned him down. Ray persisted, telling Larson that he is a member of the Challengers Club, and Larson suddenly asked him to move the van - then claimed that Ray was stealing it. Of course, Larson claims that Ray is lying. The council votes and approves funding for the Club. Furious, Larson gets a gun and tells his two goons that Booker is the problem. The bad guys kidnap Booker and kill him, making it look as if he was targeted by a gang. Mac realizes that it is a setup, and his investigation of the clues leads back to Larson's print shop. Outside the shop, Mac knocks out one of Larson's men as he is trying to burn some evidence. Mac knocks out the other one and finds copies of racist newspaper. Mac confronts Larson, who pulls a gun on him. Mac grabs for the gun and they fight as Ray arrives with the police, who hear Larson admit to killing Booker. Remembering what Mac had told him, Ray stops Mac from angrily pounding on Larson. Later, Mac visits the Club with a donation from the Phoenix Foundation and discovers that one of Ray's old gang is giving the Club a try.


[Mac needs to test the weight machine he fixed.]
MacGyver: Come on, Rico. Get on there.
Rico: No way. I'm too young and good-looking to die.

MacGyver: You never told me things were so bad.
Booker: If I did you'd worry - and worrying is Cynthia's thing. She does it better than anybody I know.
Cynthia: It's a dirty job but somebody has to do it.

Booker: I'll worry about the money, Cynthia can worry about the time, and MacGyver, you can worry about the plumbing.
[Mac's eyes widen in surprise.]
MacGyver: Huh?
Booker: The kitchen sink's busted.
MacGyver: Ah.

Girl (making a sign): How many N's in the word "anniversary"?
Booker: Good question: how many D's in the word "dictionary"?

Cynthia (about Booker): Sometimes I wish he had gone on to practice law. But you know what he says. "By the time a kid needs a lawyer--"
MacGyver: "-- it's already too late."

MacGyver: Hey, I don't even know the kid.
Booker: Kids like you once they get to know you.

MacGyver: Hi. My name's MacGyver.
[Ray doesn't respond.]
MacGyver: I'm told kids like me once they get to know me.
Ray: Yeah, well, I'm no kid, and I don't like you. And I sure as hell don't want to get to know you.
MacGyver: Okay. Well, I guess we're off on the wrong foot. I hate when that happens. Hi. Name's MacGyver, and I'm gonna be on you like green on grass until Booker gets out of that council meeting. Put on your seatbelt.

Ray: You ain't cool here.
MacGyver: Why? Because I'm white? Segregation is over, Ray.
Ray: I'll believe it when I see it.

"Rack 'em and say goodbye." Ray, after Mac proposes a wager over a game of pool

"You've got to learn to look at all the angles, Ray." Mac, talking about pool - and life

Ray: That was luck.
MacGyver: No, that was physics. For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.

MacGyver: You go gunnin' for somebody, they're gonna come gunnin' for you.

Ray: I don't need no play-by-play. I see what you're doing.
MacGyver (continuing the lesson): Look for the openings, not what's in front of your face.

MacGyver: Ray, the hate has got to stop somewhere. It has got to stop!
Ray: That ain't gonna change nothin'!
MacGyver: Every action has a reaction. You have got to believe that.

"Just goes to show you: you can't judge a book by its color." Mac, after Ray apologizes for what he said earlier

[Mac confronts Larson about printing a racist magazine.]
Larson: You should read it.
MacGyver: I'd flush it.

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