TV Pilots hold the promise of a new television phenomenon, or a forgotten anecdote that ends ups collecting dust in a vault. Young MacGyver is an example of the later, but thanks to the Internet, and a disgruntle intern at Paramount who probably stole a VHS copy from the vault, we can get a taste of where the MacGyver franchise would have headed.
Young MacGyver follows Clay MacGyver, the young nephew of the original MacGyver, staring Jared Padalecki, the soon to be discovered pretty boy from the Supernatural TV series.
The show has everything you would expect from a MacGyver style vehicle, with plenty of clever ways to use the surrounding tools and environment to fight crime and save the day.
And just in case you’ve never seen an episode of MacGyver, well you’re in luck. Because we are blessed with a two minute elevator sequence where old ladies and Mexican men can’t stop talking about the wonderful man that is MacGyver. Leaving Clay, and us, feeling extremely uncomfortable. But at least we now know how awesome MacGyver is.
And just in case that wasn’t enough, there’s a picture of MacGyver up on the wall. Because what super secret spy agency wouldn’t want to post up a glamour shots of their top agents.
While the original MacGyver was a spy of sorts, for the rather ambiguous Phoenix Foundation, it was never really played up as a huge part of the series. He just happened to be around solving stuff. Young MacGyver made it a point to let us know that he was a Super Spy, with a Super Spy room full of computers that flash codes all over the screen and everything.
DAMN! That’s some serious spy stuff!
But with all their high tech equipment, they just can’t crack that one tiny piece of code that will lead them to the bad guys. That’s when young MacGyver steps in to show these old foggies how it’s done. For no other reason other than “Why not?” he decides to shave off the prisoners hair to reveal the key piece of the puzzle to decrypt the code. I’m not sure how Clay came to this conclusion, but when the male lead is this hot, you don’t give two shits about logic as you fall into his dreamy eyes.
The show continues on with Clay MacGyver going to Africa to stop a ragtag terrorist group from doing terroristy things. He’s captured, then rescued, and a along the line does a few more MacGyver type things.
The show reaches it’s final climax when he has to disarm a rocket aimed at a US aircraft carrier. Unfortunately for him the rocket is launched, and the computer used to set the coordinates has been dismantled. But he’s a MacGyver! So what does he do? He takes a walkie talkie connects some wires to the computer terminal and manages to change the course of the rocket. Just like that…
Now MacGyver has always been a show that you had to suspend your sense of disbelief just a little bit, but there was always a TRACE of science in everything he did. This last MacGyver-ism seemed to take a slight departure from science and falls into lazy writing in the hopes that the people watching would simply accept that connecting two cables together would someone supply the right signal to alter the course of the rocket. But can we really blame them? Just look at those eyes!
Young MacGyver was a show that seemed to have promise. It was rough around the edges, but it seemed better than most shows that made it on the air. Given enough time it looks like it could have been a good guilty pleasure. But that ship has long sailed.
Here’s the full episode in case you’re curious.