MacGyver » Season 6
Trail of Tears
Original Air Date: April 29, 1991
MacGyver attends a trial in which Native American lawyer Larry Whitecloud contends that the route for new power lines will result in environmental damage to a nearby Indian reservation. Without evidence to support Mr. Whitecloud's claim, the jury finds in favor of the power company, New Plains Electric (NPE). After the trial, Mac approaches Whitecloud and offers to help gather new evidence, but the lawyer is bitter, tired of losing in his fight against the system. Dick Russell, head of security at NPE, overhears that Mac is still going to investigate, and he reports this to his boss, Mr. Johnson. Later, Mac arrives at an NPE office, but no one responds to his knock. Whitecloud appears from behind the building, insisting that "high-tensions lines cannot go up." Seconds later, Whitecloud pulls Mac to safety, and the building explodes. Russell and his flunkie, who were watching Mac, start shooting. Mac and Whitecloud flee into the woods. Mac wants to know what changed Whitecloud's attitude; Whitecloud explains that he was visited by an Indian spirit who showed him the destructive energy of the power lines, and now Whitecloud is determined to stop them by any means necessary. Whitecloud leads Mac to the cabin of Phil Crow, but they find Crow dead. Russell and his partner return, having traced Crow's connection to Whitecloud. Russell shoots Mac, but Whitecloud runs. Wounded, Mac also gets away, and he hides in an old mine. He too has a vision of the Indian Standing Wolf, who shows him what Whitecloud saw. Coming to in the cave, Mac discovers an old chest with a map. He heads to NPE and finds Whitecloud, who has set a bomb. Mac explains that the map proves that the proposed route for the power lines is actually part of the Indian reservation, but a vengeful Whitecloud refuses to disarm the bomb. Mac goes to warn the NPE guys, but they take him prisoner. Mac quickly frees himself and hurries back inside the plant to try to save the people who have arrived for a tour. Whitecloud also returns to the plant, and he threatens Mr. Johnson with a bow and arrow. Mac tells how he saw the vision and that violence was not the message. Mac is able to stop the bomb, and Whitecloud opts to let the authorities punish Mr. Johnson.
Whitecloud: This is the only Earth we've got. It's not as if we can pick up and move to another planet.
Whitecloud: For five centuries, we've been given the choice of signing treaties or being exterminated. So, we signed, nearly four hundred times. But even then - ask any Indian - not one of those treaties was ever completely honored. So, my hat is off to you, Mr. Samuels. You have found the one treaty in all the world, in all of time, that someone actually wants to abide by.
[He addresses the jury.]
Whitecloud: Don't you believe it.
Whitecloud: Unfortunately in 1891, none of us had law degrees to ferret out these scams.
Whitecloud: We're not asking to renegotiate the sale of Manhattan Island.
Willis: We just want to set things right.
Whitecloud: Sorry. You're a few hundred years too late.
Whitecloud: Where are you from?
Standing Wolf: A place where a warrior does not waste his time thinking, when he can take action.
Whitecloud: What do you mean "hold it"? They were shooting at us.
MacGyver: No kidding. You just blew up their construction site!
Whitecloud: Yeah, I also dropped my rifle and they still kept shooting, at both of us.
MacGyver: You think they followed me?
Whitecloud: You're the one that's been digging into the treaty. Unless, of course, they're just nostalgic to kill an Indian.
Whitecloud: A spirit came to me. First he was a man, an old Indian named Standing Wolf. He brought me to the flats. Then he became a wolf . . . and I saw the killing power of the electricity, red and glowing. Then I saw a dead Indian boy. A vision of the future -- unless I did something to stop it.
MacGyver: Planting bombs is not the answer. You're gonna kill somebody.
Whitecloud: One man's terrorist is another man's patriot.
MacGyver: Yeah, well, that's absurd. Terrorism never did any good.
Whitecloud: I spent my entire adult life functioning within the system: that doesn't do any good either.
Whitecloud: If, uh, Crow acts a little strange, don't take it personally.
MacGyver: I'm getting used to it.
MacGyver: You'll be playing right into their hands.
Whitecloud: Their hands are going to get bloody.
MacGyver: This is a dream, right?
Standing Wolf: I don't think so.
[He pinches Mac's finger.]
Standing Wolf: Didn't that hurt?
[Mac shakes his head "no."]
Standing Wolf: Hey. . . maybe this is a dream. Well, no matter.
"This is later. Much later." Standing Wolf, showing Mac the future
MacGyver: I don't understand. What I saw was not about violence.
Standing Wolf: Violence? No. Violence was not the message.
MacGyver: Counting coup?
Standing Wolf: Yes. A warrior shows true greatness by choosing not to kill an enemy, but instead to humiliate him by touching him with a stick. And then, to come away unharmed.
Russell: You know, if I were superstitious, MacGyver, I would swear you were a ghost.
MacGyver: Sometimes the system works the way it's supposed to.
Original Air Date: May 6, 1991
MacGyver arrives at the hospital, finds Pete Thornton's room, and confronts Pete for lying about being on vacation. Pete confesses that he's having surgery to try to save his sight, but Pete doesn't want Mac to see him "like this" and insists on handling it alone. However, Mac refuses, saying that Pete's always been there for him. When Pete says that Mac's never really needed him, Mac counters with the time Pete assisted in Mac's escape from the Chinese Consulate. Not convinced, Pete says that anyone could've done what he did. When Pete laments that Mac doesn't understand what he's going through, Mac recalls the time he was in a coma; he says that he was ready to let go, but Pete gave him the will to live. Pete admits that he's scared of life after the surgery, but Mac's memories of the challenges they've overcome help improve Pete's outlook. Mac leaves to meet Willis at the lab. When Mac returns, he finds that flowers have been delivered, and the card contains a cryptic - borderline threatening - message signed "Brainwashed No More." Mac and Pete suspect Jack Dalton, who had been brainwashed, but Mac notices that the card is perfumed, indicating that sender may be a woman. At the Phoenix Foundation, Mac and Willis review the women criminals listed in the files until Mac recalls that master-of-disguise Murdoc could convincingly portray a woman. Mac quickly calls to tell the hospital no visitors for Pete. Meanwhile, a woman arrives at Pete's room, but with blurred vision Pete can't tell who it is. Mac hurries to the hospital to find... Pete's ex-wife Connie. She sent the flowers anonymously because she wasn't sure Pete would accept her visit.
MacGyver: How's he doing?
Nurse: If getting him into a hospital gown is any indication, terrible.
Pete: How did you find out?
MacGyver: I'm a clever guy.
Pete: Maybe I would like to handle this alone, okay?
MacGyver: No. No, it's not okay. You've always been there for me. Friendship works two ways, you know?
Pete: What is there to talk about? You don't understand what I'm going through. You don't know what I feel.
MacGyver: Well, do I have to?
"This is your idea of cheering me up?" Pete, about Mac's coma story
[Pete fears life after the surgery.]
Pete: What am I gonna be? Who am I gonna be?
MacGyver: Pete, isn't the important thing how you feel inside? How you live your life?
Pete: I'm gonna have to learn to live by a whole new set of rules. I'm gonna have to learn . . . to be very dependent.
MacGyver: You and I have always been dependent on each other.
Pete: Yeah, sure. You provide the brains, and I come up with the paychecks.
"Doc, any chance of getting a break in the price if we do both eyes at the same time?" Pete, apparently in a better mood
"Maybe it was just an innate fear of nurses with cold hands." Pete, on why he may have waited to have the surgery
"In spite of the anger and all the pain you caused in the name of your beloved Phoenix Foundation, I'd like to be there for you, even though you were never there for me." The message on the card with the flowers Pete received
Pete: What kind of woman would send a note like this to someone in the hospital?
MacGyver: A woman with a score to settle?
Pete: Somebody wants to do me bodily harm?
[Mac shrugs to say "it could happen."]
Pete: MacGyver, women don't think like that.
MacGyver: Santina did.
Pete: The last I heard of Santina, she had quit the revolution and was teaching school in a barrio.
Willis: But I thought he fell down a mine shaft and was killed.
MacGyver: Willis, he's also been blown up in a building, consumed by a fireball; he's fallen off a two-thousand-foot mountain -- drowned. And they never find the body.
Pete: Like you said. It's not what I see; it's what I feel that counts.