I remember watching the original MacGyver with Richard Dean Anderson in reruns as I grew up. I liked it so much, I bought the whole series when it was on sale on Amazon. Of course, I knew that many of the "quick" fixes were strictly make believe especially after Myth Busters tried a few things and declared them busted.
So when I discovered there is a remake that is in its 2nd season. Remember, I live in the middle of Alaska where we have one over the air channel unless I want to purchase satellite so I wait and purchase DVD's on sale. I am working my way through the first season and wondered if the stuff he does this time is more accurate.
To start with, the production hired a physicist to make sure the capers are possible even if they can't be done within the same time frame MacGyver does. The physicist and others even searches the web for ideas from others on the web from makers and others. Ideas that can easily be included as part of the show.
Some of the ideas harvested and used in MacGyver include:
1. A laser microphone which reads the sound waves against the window. He uses the laser from a CD player, a photocell, and chewing gum to make one. yes it will work but not with sensitivity on the show due to the shortness of time involved.
2. A fire starter to light a fire. He uses pine sap from pine bark to start a fire. This really works but do not use too much or you might end up with a huge out of control fire.
3. MacGyver makes a gas mask out of a soda bottle early in the series. He cuts out enough of a side to fit his face, seals it against his face with inner tube, then stuffs wet newspaper into the small opening to filter fumes. In reality it can so some lightweight filtering of smoke but not for anything more serious.
4. In another episode, MacGyver creates a hot air balloon out of a dry cleaning bag with an aluminum foil platform to carry a cell phone. Unfortunately, the hot air cannot lift that much weight so it works in theory but not in reality.
5. The last instance of creativity is when he makes a Leyden Jar Battery. It was used in the 1800's when scientists studied electricity. The Leyden Jar is a huge capacitor that is too large to use in a radio. MacGyver made his out of a plastic bottle, salt water, hand cuffs, and a piece of metal and then used a lightening storm to charge it. It can work but if you make too big of one, you could be electrocuted.
Its nice knowing that most of these work or at least work in theory. Let me know what you think, I'd love to hear.