Richard Dean Anderson saved his arch-nemesis from snakes on MacGyver

By: H&I Staff     Posted: September 17, 2021, 2:53PM

“Well, I’m terrified of snakes,” said Michael Des Barres who played MacGyver’s nemesis Murdoc.

Famed musician and actor Michael Des Barres played MacGyver's greatest foe, Murdoc. MacGyver faced off with Murdoc more times throughout the series than any other villain in the series. In the 9 appearances of the show, Murdoc would unsuccessfully try to take MacGyver's life followed by him faking his death at the end of each episode.

Looking back on his time on the hit show, Des Barres remembers a time when he had to crawl through a pile of snakes. The one problem is that he's terrified of snakes. Luckily, Richard Dean Anderson was on set to offer his arch-nemesis some help.

“There was a scene where I had to wade through these snakes to get to MacGyver. I said, ‘I can’t do this.’ What happened was, Richard [Dean Anderson], who was such a great guy, said, ‘Why don’t we just alter this?’ I got on his back, and he carried me through the snakes on his shoulders,” said Michael Des Barres about his snake scene.

Unfortunately, the rest of the production crew wasn't as kind-hearted to Des Barres's fear as Anderson was.

“But what the crew had done is they put a whole bunch of fake snakes in my trailer. ‘Oh, that’s real funny, guys.’"

Des Barres's snake trouble would only continue when they found out that two of the snakes from his scene had gone missing. On top of this dilemma, the original snake scene needed a re-shoot because the original had been filmed at the wrong angle. While that day might not have been his favorite in his career, Des Barres still looks fondly back at his time on MacGyver and working with his friend Richard Dean Anderson.

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