MacGyver: Lost Treasure of Atlantis saw the title character embark on a very Indiana Jones-esque adventure. The original series starred Richard Dean Anderson as Angus MacGyver, who is basically a human swiss army knife who works for the Phoenix Foundation. MacGyver famously (almost) never used guns, and instead preferred to whip up gadgets using assorted items like paperclips. This brain over brawn approach to problem solving made both the character and the series hugely popular and it ran from 1985 until 1992 on CBS.
While Jared Padelecki was cast as Young MacGyver in the early 2000s, which followed Angus’ nephew, but it didn’t go to series. MacGyver itself was later rebooted in 2016, which cast Lucas Till as the new MacGyver and had no links to the original show. While the show suffered a lot of behind-the-scenes drama – including the surprise exit of co-lead George Eads during season 3 and the firing of showrunner Peter M. Lenkov for allegedly creating a toxic workplace – it also proved popular with viewers and finished after five seasons in early 2021.
Despite the show’s success, Richard Dean Anderson ruled out any kind of cameo and admitted he wasn’t a fan of the reboot’s take on the character. While the original MacGyver finished in 1992, Anderson’s final performances as the character actually came in the form of 1994 TV movies MacGyver: Trail to Doomsday and Lost Treasure of Atlantis. The latter is one of the more unique outings of the entire series, as it eschews the typical format of MacGyver in favor of a full-on, Indiana Jones-inspired adventure.
MacGyver: Lost Treasure of Atlantis sees Angus teaming up with an old professor of his – played by Flash Gordon’s Brian Blessed – to track down some treasure from the fabled city. There was clearly some money poured into this TV movie, as it boasts plenty of action sequences, impressive sets and globe-hopping, and it’s an interesting gimmick seeing MacGyver dodging boobytraps and deciphering ancient clues. That said, the plot itself isn’t hugely engaging while Blessed is, even by his own standards, a little too over the top and hammy to convince as a learned professor.
MacGyver: Lost Treasure Of Atlantis is also probably too far from the show’s standard formula, and while Angus gets to think – and invent – his way out of certain situations, they’re few and far between. MacGyver meets Indiana Jones is a fun mashup in concept, but this outing isn’t quite a lost treasure itself.