Magnum, P.I. Wiki

"The Black Orchid" is the sixteenth episode of the first season of Magnum, P.I. which originally aired on April 2, 1981.


A rich, bored woman, married to one of the richest men in Hawaii, hires Magnum to act out some of her "games," but then the "games" become reality.


Magnum has been hired by a woman to act out some of her rich, bored sister's fantasy dramas, concocted from 1930s Dashiell Hammett films. Although growing to enjoy the world of fantasy, Magnum has a hard time keeping up with the eccentric woman, and when he finds out that her husband is a wealthy, infamously jealous and bad-tempered business man, he decides to cut his loses and end the arrangement. But he is just informing the girl that he is calling a halt to his participation, when they are attacked by real thugs, and soon after the girl is poisoned. With the woman still caught up in her world of fantasy, Magnum must thrust himself back into reality to find out just what is really going on.




  • John Ireland as Wyndom Jackson
  • Judith Chapman as Louise DeBolt Jackson
  • Kathryn Leigh Scott as Christie DeBolt
  • Bob Hoy as Bart
  • Robert Apisa as Kimo
  • Rich Johnson as Leon
  • Ray Austin as Philippe


  • Episode director Ray Austin has a small part in this story. He also plays another small character in the fifth season episode "Ms. Jones", another episode which he directs.
  • First episode in which Magnum is referred to as Thomas, rather than Tom, as he and others called him in previous episodes.
  • Judith Chapman, the actress who plays Louise DeBolt Jackson in this episode, also plays additional characters, Sara Clifford and Lisa Page in "The Black Orchid" of Season 2 Episode 3.


Higgins: I don't think I've ever encountered a Rolls of that vintage in the islands. It's simply impeccable.

Louise Jackson: Some wives drink, some take lovers...but I play.

Louise Jackson: ...Only because the touch of my hands drives you crazy.
Magnum: What?!
Louise Jackson: I feel it, too. It's the electricity, the chemistry between us. It's overwhelming. It's overpowering. Crushing us together.
(Magnum grabs Louise and pulls her close to him)
Magnum: I don't think you realize how vulnerable we really are. Rick and T.C.... I mean, the one-eyed man.
Louise Jackson: (whispers) The one-eared man.
Magnum: The one-eared man, of course.
Louise Jackson: I know you're fighting your Code of Honor, but this feeling is just too intense. You can't help yourself... and I can't resist.
(Magnum smiles at the camera, kisses Louise forcefully)

Magnum: Just wait one minute. You think you can just admit you sent those goons after me and then just walk away! I don't believe you people, you're just incredible!

Magnum: I know what you're thinking. After the phony beach attack, I should have said goodbye to Louise. But you know something, I was starting to have a good time. Maybe she wasn't the only one who had fantasies about famous detectives who are heroes. (Narration)
  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