Magnum, P.I. (1980–1988)
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Legacy from a Friend 

The body of Magnum's friend, an experienced lifeguard, is found on a beach after an apparent drowning but TM does not believe he drowned.



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Episode cast overview:
Nancy Phillips
Sinjin Smith ...
Marcus Phillips (as St. John Smith)
Susan Mechsner ...
Crystal, Rose's henchwoman
Carla (as Julie Nickson)
Ardi Maioho ...
Frank Atienza ...
Police Sergeant Puna


The body of Magnum's friend, an experienced lifeguard, is found on a beach after an apparent drowning but TM does not believe he drowned.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis




Release Date:

10 March 1983 (USA)  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


We actually see Robins Ferrari with its top on as it pulls into Robins Nest. See more »


Annie Potts's character chases away the two women who beat up Magnum by yelling, "freeze, police!" However, at the warehouse, the same woman is there and Potts pretends to just be Magnum's girlfriend. The people at the warehouse seem not to be suspicious. See more »


[at the mansion, Tracy is treating Magnum's bruised face with cold compresses]
Tracy Spencer: You know, I mean this in the very best sort of way, but have you ever considered taking a self-defense course?
Magnum: They were women!
Tracy Spencer: That's my point... poor thing.
[Tracy absently presses the compresses to her face. Higgins walks in]
Higgins: Oh, good, Magnum, you're here because...
Higgins: [to Tracy] Good lord, are you alright?
Tracy Spencer: Oh no, I'm fine.
Magnum: [angrily] Is SHE alright? Is she alright? Higgins, look at my body!
Higgins: I'm not blind, Magnum. I can ...
See more »

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User Reviews

Sexist Plot Starring Annie Potts
23 October 2006 | by (Washington, DC) – See all my reviews

This episode is an early appearance by Annie Potts, who would guest star again in "Magnum P.I." three years later, in 1986. The plot line is that Annie's character presents herself as a homicide detective, who forces Magnum to work with her through a variety of tough-chick ploys and "feminine wiles." Nice thought -- well, half a nice thought -- but the scriptwriters are as condescending as Magnum. At one point, the character shamefacedly admits her gun "got stuck... in my make-up bag." Later, it's revealed she's actually a "meter maid" (parking enforcement officer, these days) who merely *aspires* to be in homicide "before my 31st birthday, and that's in two days!" What would be reasonable ambition in a male character (other than the two-day deadline) is presented here as something plaintive and ludicrous; you expect her to start yelping, "...and my career clock is ticking Like That!" while stomping one hoof, like the "My Cousin Vinny" scene rendered glorious by Marisa Tomei.

Potts does what she can with writing like that, but what *can* you do with writing like that? Other female characters: a pair of early 1980's hotties in spandex who kung-fu chop-socky Magnum to the floor, "because they're women! I can't hit a woman!" After being teased by his male chums, Magnum finds it in him to sucker-punch the blonde and knock her to the floor on their next meeting. Ah, there, manhood restored all around. As the two hooker-like henchwomen secure Magnum in the back seat for what might be his final ride, he quips, "You hated your fathers, didn't you?" The director has Potts drop her gun and knock her glasses askew in the final face-off, shouting "Police!" in a whiny, pleading voice so that it comes out as "Please?" In her last scene, the owlish glasses are removed without explanation so that she, too, can join the legion of lovelies who flirt with Magnum at the end of most episodes.

The only other female is a rich-bitch ice queen -- but I can't tell you her story, as that's relevant to the murder and would be a spoiler (though it's hard to imagine how one can spoil tripe this rank). On the other hand, the Hawaiian scenery is lovely, the clothes are an amusing review of early 80's fashions, the men are handsome, the real villain comes across as truly menacing (Bob Minor's character -- it looks like Minor's present career is solely as a stuntman, which is a shame, because he was quite good in this), and Selleck wears short-shorts for much of the episode...if you're into that. Not that there's anything wrong with that (cough, cough). So getting 5 out of 10, for Potts and Minor and Hawaii; and losing 5 out of 10 for the sexism that was retro and reactionary even back in 1983.

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