All season, Magnum P.I. has been hinting at more things to come regarding the murder of Captain Buck Greene. And in “Dark Skies”, we begin to get an image of the broader picture, and let’s just say it’s not good for Thomas and company.
It starts in San Diego. The harbormaster that T.C. talked with back in episode one has since gone missing, and now is hiding on his houseboat in sunny San Diego. Just one problem—Thomas has found him, and surprises him when he returns. Louis Peele was apparently paid to lie about Greene, and now Thomas wants his assistance finding the men that had Greene murdered. And in case Louis thought Magnum was asking for help, let’s be clear—this is a demand on Thomas’ part, and the only way Louis can make restitution for his actions.
Then we go to Rick’s bar, La Mariana, for trivia night. Or as he calls it, La Triviana (cringe). There’s plenty of trash talk and laughter, and Higgy and her team are against Shammy and his team in the final round. We actually haven’t seen any of Shammy all season 5, and I suspected he was cut out of the show entirely. So it’s nice to see him kicking butt in trivia, and winning some gift cards from Rick. Then the next morning, when the wheelchair-bound big winner rolls in to redeem his winnings for a breakfast burrito (Rick has a no alcohol policy on gift cards). Kumu realizes someone tried to steal from them. The cash drawer is off kilter, and some expensive Moai masks were taken. Kumu and Shammy realize someone was inside the bar all night, hiding in the bathroom, and then went out through the window with their loot. But Magnum and Higgins aren’t the only detectives in town, and so Shammy and Kumu are on the case!
As for Higgins, she’s working a new case on Maui, so she gets a chopper ride from T.C. The client of the week is Nolan Pierce, an eccentric billionaire that has no grasp of social cues whatsoever. Someone has been harassing him with a drone for several days straight, and so he hired Higgy and T.C. to help find out who. They chat with the help, and it’s quickly made clear Pierce is a real piece of work. Not only is he eccentric, but he’s expanding into protected wildlife areas and generally seems like an asshole. Hell, the only reason he hired outsiders to help is because he just fired his corporate security for trying to unionize. Like most people with too much money, he’s a real great guy.
Meanwhile, Rick gets more info on the terrorist they had a hand in taking out, Hadid. He finds a trail of bodies in the wake of Hadid’s killing, including an expert named Nadine Amherst. She died last summer, supposedly in a plane crash, but sabotage seems more likely. All that matters is everybody that had a hand in the operation is getting killed one by one, and Magnum and company are next. So his plan is to use Louis as bait to draw in the people that hired him. Rick is worried Thomas is being hasty, but Magnum’s not willing to wait any longer, and wants to punish the people that killed Greene.
Back with Kumu and Shammy, they’re able to trace footprints from La Mariana’s bathroom to social media, and find the culprit. He’s just a young, stupid kid. He gets caught quickly, and Katsumoto thanks the duo for their detective work. Then Kumu waits in the lobby, and starts talking with a woman that’s clearly overwhelmed. Turns out, she’s the thief’s mother, and he was just desperate to get money to fix her fuel pump. It’s clear Kumu has a lot of sympathy, and wants to do what she can to help.
As for Higgins and T.C., they’re getting ready to triangulate where the drone may have come from when another appears. There’s a fantastic sequence where she and T.C. are riding horseback chasing the drone, taking potshots until Juliette finally knocks it out of the sky. When Higgy takes it apart, she finds it was sent from protected land three miles away, which makes them think the drone was sent by some activist group unhappy with Pierce.
Back with Magnum, he watches from a shielded position with Rick on overwatch duty while Louis plays bait. It’s quickly clear something has gone wrong when Louis gets a call, and moments later he’s shot twice. The sniper runs for it, and Magnum chases him. There’s a scuffle, but Thomas manages to knock the shooter unconscious. And thankfully for bait boy, he was wearing a bulletproof vest, so he survived the ordeal.
The shooter is tied up at Robin’s Nest, and it’s pretty clear he’s former military. He says he doesn’t know who hired him, and that they shouldn’t put their trust in Greene. Some digging uncovers that the shooter was a ranger serving a prison sentence in Levenworth for war crimes in Syria. Just one problem—his sentence isn’t up yet, but somehow he’s walking around free as a bird. Given his military service, it also seems very unlikely he’s working for Hadid’s people.
Higgins and T.C. check out where the drone was launched from, and find a bunch of cigarillos. Worse, they find a fire where four men were burning evidence. Turns out, they weren’t after Pierce at all. They were after his pilot, a woman named Valentina. Higgy calls Pierce and tells him to take refuge in a safe room. Because the men are still after Valentina, and will kill anybody in their way.
Pierce and company skulk into the safe room as the men arrive, guns blazing. They watch on the monitor as they rage about outside. Thankfully, Higgy and T.C. arrive shortly on horseback and armed with pistols. They make short work of the banditos, and deal with an overly clingy billionaire afterwards. Valentina was apparently being hunted because she gave an anonymous tip to the DEA about a former boss.
It ends with a hostage exchange and some big revelations. First Kumu and Shammy chill out back at La Mariana. They got the Moai masks back, and kindhearted Kumu didn’t press charges on the stupid thief. As for Magnum and Rick, though their hostage kept insisting they had to kill him, instead they hand him over to U.S. Marshals to deal with. Then at the very end of “Dark Skies”, Higgins finds wire transfers sent to the sniper. Turns out, they lead right back to the CIA.
Though I’m not at all sure why the CIA would be trying to murder Magnum and company, it’s a great twist. Here’s hoping they can keep up the positive momentum and keep us all on the edge of our seats.