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What to Know About Rick Wright Before Magnum P.I. Season 5

The character brings the laughs and the heart! Watch Season 5 of Magnum P.I. on NBC. 

By Jackie Manno
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Magnum P.I. has been giving us some seriously cool crime-fighting characters, along with a dose of romance, emotion, and humor. And one of the principal characters, the street-smart Rick Wright (played by Zachary Knighton) adds both sentimentality and laughs to the show. Here's everything you need to know about his character before the Season 5 Magnum P.I. premiere.

Who is Zachary Knighton?

How to Watch

Watch Magnum P.I. Wednesdays at 9/8c on NBC and next day on Peacock.    

Zachary Knighton is an American actor whose previous roles include Happy Endings, Parenthood, and Santa Clarita Diet. As far as his role on Magnum P.I., Knighton has been having a blast while filming.

"I was a huge fan of the original and I grew up surfing and sailing and I'm a diver," Knighton said in an interview with CBS News. "I love the outdoor aspects of the tropical climate. Of course, the appeal of moving to Hawaii was great. I love the show and I love Larry Manetti, who was the original Rick. I was a fan of him, even pre-Magnum P.I. days. It just felt like a choice that made sense. I had gone down this road of a lot of pilots and things I had been doing since Happy Endings got cancelled. This felt like a sure thing and something that would stay on the air for a while. I love the team involved and it has been a blast. We are really fortunate that people love the show."

He then went on to discuss the tone of Magnum P.I. "It was important to me that he not only be the funnier guy on the show, but also that there was a lot of heart," said Knighton of his character. "There's a lot of comic relief on Magnum, but we deal with a lot of storylines that are important to me like stuff that we do with PTSD and veterans. We are trying to bring honor to those who served and we want to do them right. We want to portray situations and things our veterans encounter in life post-military."

Who Is Rick Wright on Magnum P.I.?

Rick “Orville” Wright was a former Marine who was a Prisoner of War with Thomas Magnum in Iraq. He now currently owns a hip bar in Honolulu called La Mariana. He is also known to be a very well-connected man, which comes in handy when Magnum is trying to solve cases.

What happened to Rick Wright on Magnum P.I.?

In Season 2, Rick's father figure, a mobster with the nickname “Icepick,” is released from prison but elected not to tell Wright at first. However, the two eventually reconnected, and Icepick disclosed that he is planning on getting revenge on someone he knew in prison. Wright attempted to talk him out of this, but Icepick ignored his reasoning and ended up getting shot. In Season 3, Icepick returned to prison. When Wright went to visit him, he learns that Icepick has been transported to the hospital and is on his deathbed.

On the lighter side of things, Wright begins to form a connection with a bartender named Suzy. (Fun fact – Suzy is played by Betsy Phillips, and she and Knighton are married in real life!) Suzy learns in Season 4 that she is pregnant with Wright’s child. He prepares to become a father as his feelings become stronger for her. To his dismay, Suzy suffers some serious pregnancy complications at the end of Season 4, but then gives birth to a healthy baby girl at the finale.

Watch Magnum P.I. on NBC Sundays starting February 19 at 9/8c and next day on Peacock.