MacGyver: Season 1, Episode 12

Deathlock (22 Jan. 1986)

TV Episode  |   |  Action, Adventure, Crime
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 160 users  
Reviews: 2 user | 1 critic

An enemy of MacGyver's fills a supposed safe house with several deadly booby traps to exact his revenge on MacGyver.


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Title: Deathlock (22 Jan 1986)

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Episode credited cast:
Karen Blake
Beulah Quo ...
Mrs. Chung
Erik Holland ...
Tom Maier ...
Karl Held ...
Man #2 (as Carl Held)
Frank Holms ...
The German
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Wolfgang Völz ...
Pall bearer


After returning from a dangerous mission in East Germany, MacGyver is sent to a safe house by his friend Pete Thornton. Unknown to the two men, an agent who is after MacGyver knows about their hiding place and will stop at nothing to finish the two of them off. Written by Lindsay Duke

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Release Date:

22 January 1986 (USA)  »

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Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


At the start of the episode, at the shot of people exiting the landing pad, the helicopter can be seen wobbling and then taking off with its door open. Although innocuous in appearance that was a case of "ground resonance", a dangerous condition where a helicopter standing on the ground may start to shake increasingly violently and eventually suffer a catastrophic failure wrecking the helicopter. The pilot took off to prevent this from happening, and the footage was left in the episode. See more »


Since he was busy removing Karen's com-unit and then confronting her about her being an enemy agent, Mac doesn't ever get a chance to pour vinegar into the biscuit tin, and he does not take the vinegar bottle with him when he and Karen exit the kitchen, so he could not have later created the cloud of "smokesceen gas" by pouring the baking soda into the tin, since the tin was still empty. See more »


[as MacGyver, Karen and Pete are trapped inside the mansion]
Quayle: You'll be the last one to die, MacGyver.
MacGyver: That's what I figure too: Of old age, hopefully.
See more »


References Funeral in Berlin (1966) See more »

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User Reviews

Dress Rehearsal for Murdoc
20 October 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This story has all the hallmarks of later MacGyver episodes featuring the indefatigable Murdoc, but Quayle is given the usual James Bond villain dialogue. Astute "Doctor Who" fans will recognize Christopher Neame as the villain Skagra from 1979's unfinished storyline "Shada." I also thought the tepid romance could have been dispensed with, as it seemed very contrived, even for television. I think the blackmail motivation had been done more effectively in series such as "Danger Man." MacGyver's creators certainly wanted to follow in this well-tooled Cold War tradition, but it's not always very convincing.

I did enjoy the trapped manor, even if the familiar setup might make older viewers think fondly of a classic "Avengers" episode, "The House That Jack Built." It's a pity more could not have been made of the beautiful gardens and outer grounds, but this story relied too much on indoor electronic surveillance and booby traps to allow this scope.

Overall, "Deathlock" is mildly disappointing, with Pete Thornton being introduced only to suffer a serious shock, letting MacGyver handle all the action. I enjoy the adventures where Pete and Mac complement each other, and "Partners" from Season Two is a much better "origin" story. One should read Season One stories quite selectively for continuity.

7 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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