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October 26, 2005

Higgins was not Robin Masters

I have a friend who claims Higgins was actually Robin Masters, fictional multi-millionaire novelist and man of mystery (portrayed in an uncredited performance by Orson Welles). Magnum P.I. foil, and true hero of the show, Jonathan Quayle Higgins III cut a fine Flea-ish figure of a man. But broke-ass journalism student, Shaun disagrees he was Robin Masters. He is quite right to do so.

It has to do with the relationship between Higgins and Magnum. Though there was certainly a mutual admiration between the two men, there was also a great deal of friction in their relationship. Higgins was constantly in arms about Magnum's use of the Ferrari and his access to the wine cellar, both of which Masters supposedly approved of. And Magnum, more often than not, got what he wanted. Were Higgins really Masters, either there would have been no friction over such trivial matters, or Magnum simply wouldn't have had the run of the estate he did. The relationship between Magnum, Higgins and Masters suggests that Higgins was a surrogate of Masters'.

Higgins may have confessed his true identity in the show's final episode but he was joking. Having already fooled Magnum about his identity at least twice over the course of the series this sort of joke was entirely typical of the character's sense of humour. If anyone was secretly Robin Masters it was in all probability Magnum himself. Perhaps he had suffered a psychotic break as fall-out from his experiences at Da Nang. More likely he did not want his homeboys, T.C. and Rick, to know he was writing novels.

Update: Criley3 argues Robin Masters is none other than Thomas Magnum II, Magnum's grandfather.

Posted by Ghost of a flea at October 26, 2005 08:27 AM

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I remember and old Mad or Cracked magazine where they covered this.
The whole story line was all about who was Robin Masters. Magnum kept insisting that it was Higgins. The last frame showed that Robin Masters was...

Mr. T.

Posted by: Chad [TypeKey Profile Page] at October 26, 2005 12:45 PM