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Torah, Torah, Torah

Episode Screen Caps Episode Number: 105
Season Number: 5.21
Air Date: 3/28/1985
Writers: Martin Sage, Sybil Adelman
Director: Leo Penn
Producer: Reuben Leder
Exec Producer: Donald P. Bellisario

Recurring Characters
Kwan Hi Lim (Lt. Tanaka)
Guest Stars
Nehemiah Persoff (Rabbi Asher Solomon), France Nuyen (Miss Chou), Arlen Dean Snyder (Mr. Shelby), Peter Stader (Vic Makula), Ralph Strait (Optician), Chris Duque (Dick Ling)
Episode Brief
When Magnum picks up a rabbi friend of Higgins' at the airport they're ambushed, a valuable Torah is stolen, and the investigation of the theft leads Magnum to a gang of smugglers.
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1 The title of this episode is a reference to Tora! Tora! Tora!, the 1970 movie about the attack on Pearl Harbor. Tora is the code-word that the Japanese used to indicate that complete surprise was achieved. This creates a second tie-in for the title, as Magnum and the Rabbi are ambushed, and the Torah is stolen.

2 Prolific character actor Nehemiah Persoff (Rabbi Asher Solomon) has appeared in over 200 movies and television shows, going back to the late '40s. His standout film roles include Leo in The Harder They Fall (1956) with Humphrey Bogart, Gene Conforti in Alfred Hitchcock's The Wrong Man (1956), Albert in This Angry Age (1958) and gangster Johnny Torrio in Al Capone (1959). Since the late 1980's, he has been an accomplished painter.

3 The Ferrari is smashed between two cars and suffers severe body damage in the front and back. It's undriveable and has to be towed away. Magnum, of course, was not wearing a seat belt, but suffered little, if any, injury from the crash, that is until he was pummeled by the guys who jumped out of the truck that hit him!

4 Guest star France Nuyen (Miss Chou) will receive a "Woman of the Year" award in 1989 in Los Angeles for her work as a consulting psychologist in treating abused children and convicted women. France Nuyen is generally regarded as being the second major Asian actress to become a "star" in Hollywood, after Anna May Wong. She played Elaan of Troyius in a original Star Trek series episode of the same name.

5 New footage of the Ferrari driving along the costal highway is used in this episode. Previous stock footage showed an older Ferrari with a black windshield frame. Notice the red windshield frame of the '84 model in this new footage. (Noted by N1095A)

6 Rick only appears in one scene in this episode.

7 List of notable filming locations: 8 Stock footage from WWII is used for the opening "Shanghai" scene.

9 T.C. sports some new Island Hoppers merchandise in this episode: a baseball cap and a cooking apron (in addition to his normal Island Hoppers t-shirt).

10 Chris Duque (Dick Ling, the boxer) has worked for the Honolulu Police Department since 1977. He was recognized as "Detective of the Year" in 2002 and is one of Hawaii's leading computer and Internet crimes investigators. (Noted by Sam)

11 In 1945, immediately after the war in Palestine, Higgins led a patrol that had orders to shoot Jewish refugees. He came across Rabbi Asher Solomon and others on a Tramp Steamer lifeboat as it came to shore. Higgins disobeyed a standing order to "shoot on sight" and marched away from the refugees. Years later, they met outside a British museum where Jonathan tells him, "I was obeying a higher law that does not permit me to shoot unarmed refugees."

* The cemetary from the park is also used at the end of the episode ("Abraham Pressman R.I.P"). The Temple was previously seen in "Tropical Madness" (2.7), "Did You See the Sunrise?" (3.1) and "The Arrow That is Not Aimed" (3.14), and will be seen in two future episodes.
** This same house was used in Season Two's "The Sixth Position" (2.11). (Noted by Tralfaz)
Higgins: My God, what is that odor?!
T.C.: Higgy-Baby, you're talking about my Uncle Roland's original, Creole, flaming, Bayou-blaster chili. Wanna try a little taste?
Higgins: Not without a paramedic in attendance.

Rick (To Magnum): You know, do me a favor - next time when you give me the details, at least give me a little bit more than "the big van was painted the same color as the boy's locker room in junior high", will ya?!

Rabbi Soloman: You must realize that this Torah, this piece of parchment, is something I would risk anything for. It is a tangible reminder of where we come from and what we have lived through. Look, my wife and son were killed in Poland before we could escape. The Temple in Shanghai has long been in ruins, but this Torah has been reborn. It has been resurrected. You think I will let it get lost again!? No sir!
Magnum: Well, if you wouldn't mind a slightly battered, old Private Investigator tagging along, I would considered it an honor to help you in your search.
1 While in the guesthouse, Higgins explains that he needs Magnum to pick up a friend of his at the airport. He further explains that he is unable to do it himself because he is needed for urgent business on the North Shore. This would contradict the implied location of the estate, as it has been inferred that the estate is located on the North Shore! (Noted by N1095A)

2 Near the end, on the way to the cemetery, Higgins and Rabbi Soloman are seen driving in the older grey Audi 5000. Seconds later, they are seen in the newer-styled, blue Audi 5000. (Noted by John Kosowski Jr.)

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