26 September 2023

Magnum, P.I., Season One

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Reviewed by Rama Gaind.

Directors: Justin Lin, Karen Gaviola, Sylvain White, Antonio Negret, David Grossman, Duane Clark, Eagle Egilsson, Peter Weller, Ron Underwood, Lin Oeding, Mark Tinker, Amanda Marsalis, Bryan Spicer, Krishna Rao, David Straiton, Kristin Windell, Via Vision Entertainment.

Cast: Jay Hernandez, Perdita Weeks, Zachary Knighton, Stephen Hill, Amy Hill, Tim Kang.

Comparisons will be inevitable in this rebooted version of the 1980s television series with the same name created by Donald P. Bellisario and Glen A. Larson that starred Tom Selleck (Jesse Stone series, Blue Bloods).

The new star Hernandez captivates, which along with finely tuned action and a few modern coils indicate an enjoyable, entertaining status.

With slight changes, the 2018 series (just like the original) sees Thomas Magnum (Hernandez), a former Navy SEAL turned private investigator, who occupies the guesthouse on the Hawaiian estate owned by famous author Robin Masters.

Living on the estate is Weeks as Juliet Higgins, a former MI6 agent assigned by Masters to protect the estate. (Juliet Higgins replaces the male character Jonathan Higgins from the original series.)

Also frequently assisting Magnum are two former U.S. Marines, Orville ‘Rick’ Wright (Knighton), a bar owner, and TC Calvin (Hill), a pilot whose main business is running helicopter tours of the islands. Amy Hill plays Teuila ‘Kumu’ Tuileta, the cultural curator of Robin Masters’ estate. Magnum tends to be at loggerheads with Hawaii Police Department Detective Gordon Katsumoto (Kang), but the two also help each other when needed.

In the first episode titled ‘I Saw the Sun Rise’, Magnum settles into his new life as a private investigator and security consultant, but when his former teammate Nuzo winds up dead, Magnum is pulled into a quest for vengeance and gets dragged into a hunt for Iraqi gold.

The second episode ‘From the Head Down’, is an assignment to track down and retrieve a 300-pound blue fin tuna for a friend of Nuzo that takes a turn for the worse when the robber is blackmailed by an armed group to give them the fish.

Christian Yelich guest stars in ‘Black is the Widow’. After a man is murdered, Magnum poses as a doctor on the same dating app the victim was using in order to find the killer who may be preying on wealthy men.

When Magnum and Higgins get ‘yacht-jacked’ in episode 19, Higgins is shot and she and Magnum are stranded at sea, struggling to reach land before she bleeds out and the culprits return to finish them off.

In the last episode of Season One, Jordana Brewster guest stars as Hannah, Magnum’s ex-fiancee, and the fugitive responsible for him and his SEAL team brothers being POWs for years. She shows up at his home with a gunshot wound, wanting his help to find her missing CIA father whose life is in danger.

In this five-disc set with 20 episodes, Magnum also makes an earnest proposition to Higgins for her to become his private investigation partner.

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