Thomas Sullivan Magnum IV is a former U.S. Navy SEAL and now licensed Private Investigator. He also works for Robin Masters as a live-in security consultant.
Both his father and grandfather were naval officers. He was born in Detroit, but raised in the Tidewater region of Virginia. In high school, his football team won a Virginia State football championship.
When he was a kid, he and his father used to go to Baseball games together. His dad put a rowing machine in the basement which he used every morning. He always closed his eyes, probably imagining he was paddling across mighty rivers and great oceans. Now Magnum goes outside for rowing and thinks about his dad. Together with rooting for the Tigers, this is how he stays connected to his dad.
His father was a fighter pilot who served in the Vietnam War and died (got shot during a mission) leaving Magnum’s mother to raise Thomas as a single mother. After the death Magnum didn't want to go to the games alone, but later he discovered that it feels like his dad is with him whenever he watches a game.
Magnum served in the US forces at Afghanistan. During his service, he fell in love and was engaged to a woman named Hannah, a former CIA analyst who embedded Magnum and his team in Afghanistan, and became romantically involved with Magnum. For a reason that Magnum discovers only years later, Hannah betrayed his trust, which led to his capture and time spent as a POW.
He was held captive by the Taliban in the Korangal Valley together with TC, Rick, and Sebastian Nuzo for more than 18 months. He would be kept in solitary confinement for long stretches. They only survived because they had each other. Since that time, he owed Nuzo his life: Thomas had a bleeding wound in the stomach that would have killed him, but Nuzo burned it out with gunpowder, stemming the flow of blood.
His mum, who had been sick for a while, passed away while he was held in captivity in Afghanistan. He didn’t even know she had died until after he was released. He missed her funeral.
After they escaped they all moved to Hawaii. When they were about to go home after the escape (Uncle Sam was going to fly them home first class), they first had to attend a press conference. While Magnum is getting dressed, Nuzo comes in to tell him that everybody was waiting for them. Magnum didn't want to go but he had to because "We're a big story. Four American POWs pull off their own Great Escape...". For Magnum it sounded weird to go home, he was not ready for that step. Nuzo felt the same so he suggested not to do it. He was the one to mention a new life for all four of them on Hawaii: “Somewhere where the weather is nice, a place that feels like you are always on vacation, because people on vacation don’t think about their problems.”
Hawaii didn’t just keep them together; it also gave them a purpose. He has a deal with Robin Masters, a war journalist who wrote a series of books based on him and his friends. He resides in his home (the guesthouse), and rarely wears socks.
- His nickname is "White Knight"
- As a general rule, he doesn't work for friends
- He and his three friends are wearing the same ring with the Cross of Lorraine. That’s originally the symbol of the French Resistance. For them it represents their friendship and the pact they made in Afghanistan: to be always there for one another.
- In the Pilot episode, he is shown in choker whites with the Navy Seal Budweiser and Parachutist Badge. The ribbons on his uniform are Navy Cross, Bronze Star with "V", Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal with gold star, Combat Action Ribbon, Navy Unit Commendation, Meritorious Unit Commendation, Navy Good Conduct Medal (though only enlisted get this after three years), National Defense Service Medal, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal, GWOT Expeditionary Medal, GWOT Service Medal, Sea Service Deployment Ribbon, Navy Expert Rifle, Navy Expert Pistol.
- He is mad with himself because Nuzo saved his live, and he couldn’t save his.
- During one mission he HALO jumped into North Korea to avoid surveillance (in his book Robin had him jump from space)
- After he gave the code for the gate-entrance of Robin’s house to friends, clients and occasional one-night stands Higgins implemented a new security policy. The universal gate code has been retired. Regular visitors, like staff, will each have their own personalized gate code.
- To get Kamekona (a friend of Rick) to help to find the stolen tuna in Episode 2 he agrees to have at least one meal at his shrimp truck every week for the next month
- He answers the question why he often works pro bono although he barely makes money as P.I. with “When I was a sailor, I didn't make much. I did it because I thought I was helping people. I guess that is all I know.”
- Unlike the original series, in which Magnum never directly communicated with Robin Masters, leaving the true identity of the millionaire a secret to him, the reimagined Magnum is in frequent contact with Masters.
- In Season 2 Episode 17, when Higgins has trouble with her visa, Magnum asks her to fake marry him, and at first she says no, but later in the episode accepts. The next episode, she breaks it off and plans to married to TC instead. At the end of the episode, Magnum says that he was looking forward towards the wedding though. This could be a sign that Thomas has a crush on Juliet.
- Just like the original Thomas Magnum, they are both Detroit Tiger fans.
- He is severely allergic to cats.
- He knows Noelani and Kamekona from "Hawaii Five-0".
- The ringtone for calls from Rick is "Girls just wanna have fun".
- He loves animals, but doesn't get along with Zeus and Apollo (Juliet's dogs).
- All top divorce lawyers on Hawaii hate him.
- He can't bind a tie.
- Kumu (the cultural curator of Robin's estate) is teaching him how to golf in Robin's backyard.
- He has poker debts with Luther Gillis (a fellow private investigator).
- He often promises a free helicopter tour of the island as a service in return (without asking TC).
|Magnum P.I. Characters|
|Current||Thomas Magnum • Juliet Higgins • Rick Wright • Theodore Calvin • Gordon Katsumoto • Teuila Tuileta|
|Other||Noelani Cunha • Duke Lukela • Kamekona Tupuola • Flippa Tupuola • Sebastian Nuzo • Icepick • Luther Gillis • Buck Greene • Kenny "Shammy" Shamberg|