Magnum, P.I. Wiki
Magnum, P.I. Wiki

"Skin Deep" is the sixth episode of the first season of Magnum, P.I. which originally aired on January 15, 1981.


Magnum investigates the suicide of a beautiful actress who killed herself with a shotgun.


When a beautiful model-actress is killed by a shotgun blast in a scenario closely resembling a scene from the script of an upcoming film, it is seemingly suicide. Magnum is hired by her former producer and lover to investigate any other men that she may have been seeing before her death -- a case that Magnum is reluctant to take, but, feeling guilty for not taking it before the girl was killed, he agrees. But as the investigations unfold, it becomes apparent that there is much more to the case than first appears, and the supposedly murdered woman was being hounded by the obsessive former lover. The case reaches it's pinnacle when Magnum, still haunted by nightmares of the Vietnam war in his dreams, finds himself reliving it in much more reality, in a deadly hunt down on a deserted tropical island.




  • Ian McShane as David Norman
  • Cathie Shirriff as Erin Wolfe
  • Ron Masak as J.J. Stein (credited as Ron Másak)
  • Remi Abellira as Moki
  • Paul Dennis Martin as Pilot
  • Reri Tava Jobe as Hostess (credited as Reri Tava)
  • Tommy Fujiwara as Dr. Makudo (credited as Tom Fujiwara)


  • Magnum identifies himself as McGarrett of 5-0, demonstrating that Magnum and Hawaii Five-0 did exist in the same universe.
  • Donald Bellisario is listed as the writer for the script shown as Erin is rehearsing her suicide scene. He is the creator and director for many Magnum, PI episodes.
  • Prior to this episode, John Hillerman, Roger E. Mosley and Larry Manetti were listed in the opening credits as co-starring. As of this episode, it became also starring.


Magnum: Erin had worked hard to improve her acting over the years, and it had paid off. She wasn't just a beautiful body any more; she was GOOD! Then suddenly, I was reminded that she was also dead.

Magnum: Sorry Higgins. I wouldn't blame you if you set the dogs on me.
Higgins: I would, but they're obviously busy. (supposedly launching clay pigeons!)

Erin Wolfe: So, a woman can't go out like a man, huh? She takes pills, or swims out to sea, or slits her wrists, but she ain't got the guts to blood-up the old face? Isn't that what you said David? Huh? Well, here's one woman who's gonna take it right between the baby blues just to show you how smart you really are.

Magnum: ...David hired me to find your lover.
Erin Wolfe: I don't have a lover!
Magnum: David believes you do, because of all the weekends that you disappear.
Erin Wolfe: I was here! Alone!
Magnum: David didn't know that. He figured wherever your lover was, that's where you'd be. That's why he hired me, to find your lover. And once I led him to your lover, then he'd kill all three of us.
  Season 1 (1980)
Don't Eat the Snow in HawaiiChina DollThank Heaven for Little Girls and Big Ones TooNo Need to KnowSkin DeepNever Again... Never AgainThe Ugliest Dog in HawaiiMissing in ActionLest We ForgetThe Curse of the King Kamehameha ClubThicker Than BloodAll Roads Lead to FloydAdelaideDon't Say GoodbyeThe Black OrchidJ. "Digger" DoyleBeauty Knows No Pain