Spanning almost all of the ’80s (1980-1988), the original Magnum P.I. emerged as one of the decade’s most iconic series, making Tom Selleck a household name. 30 years after production on that series ended, a new creative team is joining forces for an action-packed reboot. With a pilot script co-written by Peter Lenkov (who also played a role in rebooting Hawaii Five-0 and MacGyver), this new series revives the title character’s Ferrari and Hawaii locale—with one major difference: star Jay Hernandez (Suicide Squad, The Expanse) is playing Thomas Magnum without his predecessor’s signature moustache.
“No one is going to replace Tom Selleck,” he told TV Guide. “You can’t do that. You gotta sorta reinvent it, take what works from the original show and sort of make it new, so that’s what we did.” If you still can’t imagine Magnum P.I. without facial hair, Hernandez has some reassuring words: “Watch the show. There might be something that people who need the moustache might feel satisfied with.”
In addition to Lenkov, the new Magnum P.I. benefits from the presence of a filmmaker who has proven himself adept at working with established properties: director and executive producer Justin Lin. With four Fast and the Furious movies under his belt (and two more on the way), he has practice breathing new life into an old, car-driven franchise. He also recently made his mark in one of the most enduring of all pop culture properties, directing 2016’s Star Trek: Beyond.
If the official synopsis is any indication, this series will give Lin and company plenty to sink their teeth into: “Magnum P.I. is a modern take on the classic series starring Jay Hernandez as Thomas Magnum, a decorated former Navy SEAL who, upon returning home from Afghanistan, repurposes his military skills to become a private investigator. A charming rogue, an American hero, and a die-hard Detroit Tigers fan, Magnum has Juliet Higgins and her Dobermans to keep him in line, as well as his trusted buddies and fellow POW survivors TC and Rick when he needs back-up on a job. With keys to a vintage Ferrari in one hand, aviator sunglasses in the other, and an Old Düsseldorf longneck chilling in the fridge, Thomas Magnum is back on the case!”
Magnum P.I. airs Mondays at 9 p.m. ET this fall on CTV.