The Magnum P.I. TV series was a popular show starring actor Tom Selleck as Thomas Magnum. Thomas Magnum is a fictional private investigator who lives in Oahu, Hawaii. The series lasted eight seasons from 1980 to 1988 on the CBS television network. The series ran for 162 episodes (see a list of episodes below).
Donald P. Bellisario and Glen A. Larson created the Magnum PI television series. Corey Allen and Ray Austin directed it.
The basic premise of the Magnum P.I. television series centers around a Former Naval Intelligence officer, Thomas Magnum. In the beginning, he resigned his Navy commission to become a private investigator on the north shore of Oahu, Hawaii.
The series is filmed in Hawaii in numerous beautiful locations. For example, the crew filmed many scenes at the fictional Robin Masters estate, “Robin’s Nest.” In addition, the supporting cast is top-notch, including his buddies T.C. and Rick, who are always there to help him out on a case, though they never miss an opportunity to give him a hard time. The scripting is always interesting, funny, and witty.
The series consistently ranked in the top twenty U.S. television programs during the first five years. The series was originally telecasted in the United States. Undoubtedly, the show inspired many people to become private investigators.
Most of Thomas’s actions fail to meet the approval of Higgins, the servant to Robin Master’s estate where Thomas lives. Indeed, the interactions and witty banter between the two characters are part of the show’s main appeal.
Magnum P.I. TV Series – List of Cast Members
The main cast consists of the following:
- Tom Selleck – Thomas Magnum
- Roger E. Mosley – Theodore Calvin, more commonly known as T.C.
- Larry Manetti – Orville Wright, more commonly known as Rick
- John Hillerman – Jonathan Higgins, usually just Higgins
In addition to the main cast, there are many recurring characters. Also, many well-known actors and actresses made guest appearances in the series. For example, Frank Sinatra, Sharon Stone, Ted Danson, and Carol Burnett. Of particular note were crossovers and tie-ins from other detective shows, including:
- Angela Landsbury from Murder She Wrote
- Gerald McRaney and Jameson Parker as Rick and A. J. from Simon & Simon
Magnum P.I. TV Series Episodes
The television season episodes chronicle the private investigation efforts of Thomas and his colleagues. The private detective show had the right balance of exciting plot, mystery action sequences, and humor.
The first season has 18 episodes available to watch on Amazon Video.
- S1 E1 – Don’t Eat the Snow in Hawaii – Part 1 – In the series premiere, Thomas works to clear the name of one of his friends from the Navy.
- S1 E2 – Don’t Eat the Snow in Hawaii – Part 2 – In the second part of this two-part episode, Magnum’s efforts to investigate his friend’s death lead to problems with drug dealers.
- S1 E3 – China Doll – Next, Thomas has to protect an ancient vase from a secret society
- S1 E4 – Thank Heaven for Little Girls, and Big Ones Too – A teacher goes missing.
- S1 E5 – No Need to Know – A general has to hideout at the Robin Master’s estate during a high-profile trial.
- S1 E6 – Skin Deep – A beautiful actress commits suicide, but things are not as they seem.
- S1 E7 – Never Again, Never Again – In episode seven, a woman claims that a group of Nazis kidnapped her husband.
- S1 E8 – The Ugliest Dog in Hawaii – A group of gangsters wants to steal a dog from a local socialite.
- S1 E9 – Missing in Action – Thomas works to locate a Marine who is MIA.
- S1 E10 – Lest We Forget – 24 hours to search for someone who has been missing for 40 years.
- S1 E11 – The Curse of the King Kamehameha Club – A Hawaiian man place a curse on the King Kamehameha Club.
- S1 E12 – Thicker Than Blood – T.C. gets arrested for smuggling a man onto the island.
- S1 E13 – All Roads Lead to Floyd – Magnum gets hired to find a small-time thief.
- S1 E14 – Adelaide – A job to protect a prize horse.
- S1 E15 – Don’t Say Goodbye – Next, A blind woman needs to pay off someone who is blackmailing her.
- S1 E16 – The Black Orchid – A new case involving a rich woman.
- S1 E17 – J. “Digger” Doyle – A new security expert gets assigned to the estate.
- S1 E18 – Beauty Knows No Pain – Thomas must locate a woman’s missing fiance in the season finale.
Ratings and Reviews
The series has a rating of 5.1 out of 10 stars on IMDB, 8.7 out of 10 on IMDB, and 55% on Rotten Tomatoes. 88% of Google Users like the show.
- Tom Selleck won an Emmy in 1984 for his portrayal of Thomas Magnum
- John Hillerman also won a well-deserved Emmy in 1987 for his role as Higgins
For more information about the series, the cast, and individual episodes, visit the series Magnum P.I. Wikipedia page. Also, visit the official website for the 2018 reboot of the series.
If you like this show, check out other detective TV series.