Miami Vice Wiki
Heart of Night


3 (93rd Overall)
November 18, 1988
TV Rating
TV-14 L-V
Guest Stars
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"Heart of Night" is the third episode of Miami Vice's fifth season. It premiered on November 18, 1988.


A drug dealer is trying to kill Castillo's ex-wife and her current husband, and Castillo risks all to protect her.


In Ecuador, May Ying, Castillo's former wife, and her current husband Ma Sek are attending the inauguration of the country's new president. Rivas, a drug dealer, spots Ma Sek, who notices him as well and calls to May Ying. The couple attempts to speed away, only to be stopped at gunpoint by Rivas' men. One of Rivas' men tries to rape May Ying, but she fights him off and runs over Ma Sek's attacker, allowing them to escape.

Crockett is back at OCB after his Sonny Burnett ordeal. Castillo informs him that he's up on charges in the Hagovitch killing and a Homicide investigation into the killings in the Manolo, Carrera and Gato families is ongoing. Crockett insists he remembers nothing after the boat explosion and wants to go back to work. Castillo orders him to take time off, telling him they'll be in touch in a few days.

Castillo goes home, to find his front door has been unlocked. He cautiously looks around and finds May Ying, who used a key Castillo gave her to use when she was in trouble and needed refuge or help. She tells him about their ordeal in Ecuador with Rivas, and that she & Ma Sek took separate flights back. She didn't tell her husband about coming to see Castillo, and she has to check in with him later. May Ying confides to Castillo that her son was killed in a car accident by a drunk driver, and she blames herself for it.

A group of cops stop a shipping truck and search its containers, apparently not finding what they were looking for and storming off. May Ying takes Castillo to meet Ma Sek, who is upset about having to ask his wife's ex for help (neither realizes they are being monitored). He explains that he got a call from his boss, Malcolm Grey to take a package to Rivas, which he did, but then Rivas told him the package was not what he requested, and Grey couldn't be reached to clear the matter up, so now Rivas' men are after them. Castillo agrees to speak to Grey, just as two men attempt a hit on May Ying. Castillo shoots one, Norberto Fuentes, down, but the other man escapes and Ma Sek disappears.

Fuentes is identified as a Rivas soldier, and Castillo orders the team to find Rivas. The truck that was found earlier previously belonged to Grey, and its latest shipment came from Ecuador. Castillo goes to see Grey (who knows Castillo from their days in Bangkok) at his "Phoenix SA" business offices. Grey says he can't discuss his business relationship with Ma Sek, implying that the CIA have a hand in it. Castillo asks May Ying about the connection, which she knew about but didn't reveal to him; she says that she never told anyone about Castillo's work when they were married. She admits she no longer loves Ma Sek, and they spend a night together. Castillo asks her to stay at his house (with Trudy present) to be safe. Ma Sek calls Castillo's house and May Ying answers, hangs up (claiming it was a wrong number), and leaves suddenly in Trudy's car, with Rivas' men in pursuit. They block her in and take her away.

May Ying is held captive at Rivas' place, with Cortez threatening to cut her unless she tells them where she was going to meet Ma Sek; Rivas continues this line of questioning, smacking her around when she refuses to talk. Rivas thinks Ma Sek stole his money, and threatens to let Cortez cut her up. Castillo confronts Grey and threatens to break his hand in a desk drawer when Grey goes for a gun; Grey admits that Rivas has May Ying, but doesn't know where Ma Sek is. May Ying finally breaks (After being Savagelly Tortured and Raped by Cortez) and tells Rivas that Ma Sek is at warehouse 4, unloading the package. Castillo and the police show up at Rivas' place too late to catch them. Ma Sek is having dinner with Grey and his partner Perkins, where Ma Sek admits that he took Rivas' money because he feared being cut out by Grey. They toast to a future partnership, but Ma Sek has poisoned their glasses beforehand, and he coldly watches Grey and Perkins die.

At the warehouse, Rivas, his men, and May Ying search Ma Sek and check on the latest shipment of packages from Ecuador. At Rivas' house Switek finds "strange scratches" on the bathroom mirror; Castillo quickly recognizes it's Thai scripture, revealing where the meet with Ma Sek will take place. Cortez finds the box Rivas is looking for, which turns out to be a fake booby-trapped with a bomb, and the warehouse is overrun by police. Castillo shoots Rivas, saving May Ying, and his men are arrested, but Ma Sek is nowhere to be found. Castillo realizes Ma Sek set up Rivas and his wife by giving May Ying false information,

Castillo and May Ying

knowing she would tell Rivas and Castillo, and that he and his accomplice, Dimitri, planned this all along. Dimitri has already left for the Bahamas with his cabin cruiser, the Lady H. Port Authority has no records of it, but the Coast Guard reports the ship coming in that night with "engine trouble," with Dimitri on board.

The team heads to the dock; while Gina and Trudy secure the ship, May Ying confronts her husband, who admits to stealing from Rivas; he blames her for their son's death, and claims he's only stealing from those who stole from others—that is the way business is now. Ma Sek discovers she's wired and begins choking her, enraged that she has betrayed him, but flees when Tubbs intervenes. Castillo corners Ma Sek and they fight it out in a martial arts battle; Castillo emerges victorious and Ma Sek is arrested. After expressing their love for each other, Castillo & May Ying part ways.


Guest Stars



  • This episode was the first shot for season 5, but was aired third due to the necessary resolution of the Sonny Burnett Arc.
  • May Ying and Ma Sek previously appeared in "Golden Triangle (Part II)", although in that episode they were played by Joan Chen and Glenn Kubota respectively. This change in casting marks one of only a few times recurring characters on Miami Vice were played by different actors between appearances. Other examples include Billy Crockett and Sal Lombard. Coincidentally, James Saito, who replaces Kubota in the role of Ma Sek, was also in "Golden Triangle (Part II)", as the character Howie Wong.
  • In reality, Crockett would almost certainly be in jail following his actions as Burnett, and even if he remained free, he would never be allowed to keep his job as a police officer.
  • Because of Crockett's recovery from his trauma, he only appears for about two minutes in the episode.
  • Trudy recalls the events of "The Dutch Oven" when talking to May Ying about how Castillo defended her when she had her first shooting of a suspect.
  • It is implied Cortez finally breaks May Ying by sexually assaulting or perhaps even raping her -- he is seen putting his shirt back on afterwards, while Rivas quips, "I should have thought of that before. No woman could tolerate you."
  • The originally scripted ending had Castillo and May Ying parting ways during the day, with Castillo leaving first. This was changed to the broadcast ending, with May Ying walking away from Castillo in the evening.
  • This episode's plot, concerning Castillo protecting someone he knows from his past, is similar to season 2's Bushido, in which he protected an old CIA friend's wife and child from the KGB. Here, he is protecting his ex-wife from drug dealers (as he did in "Golden Triangle (Part II)").
  • This is one of several episodes that does not end on a freeze frame.


  • Once again, as in "Hostile Takeover", when Castillo is questioning Crockett at OCB in the opening scene, he refers to Detective James Hagovitch as James Yagovitch. It is unknown why this name pronunciation change from "Mirror Image" occurred.  

Production Notes

  • Filmed: September 15, 1988 - September 23, 1988
  • Production Code: 63904
  • Production Order: 93

Filming Locations

  • Villa Vizcaya, 3252 S. Miami Ave, Coconut Grove (Ecuador Scenes, also Castillo/May Ying embrace at end)
  • 3351 Poinciana Avenue, Coconut Grove (Castillo's house)
  • Bill Baggs State Park Cape Florida (Truck is stopped by police)
  • Embassy Suites Hotel Miami Airport, 3974 NW South River Drive (shoot out in hotel)
  • Knollwood Drive/Island Drive, Key Biscayne (May Ying's car is stopped)
  • 1720 W 28th Street, Sunset Island 1, Miami Beach (Rivas' house)
  • Dante B. Fascell Port of Miami-Dade (boxes are loaded)
  • Harbor Drive/Crandon Blvd, Key Biscayne (Ma Sek on the phone)
  • APA International Air 6465 and MIA/CFS, 6485 NW 18 St Building 2143, Miami (Ma Sek's motel, shootout at warehouse)
  • Merrill Stevens Dry Dock, 881 NW 13th Ave Miami (Pier scenes, Castillo/Ma Sek fight)



  • "I knew that!" -- Switek after Castillo quickly reads scratches in Thai on bathroom mirror
  • "Right, Stan!" -- Tubbs in response
Season 5 Episodes:

"Hostile Takeover" "Redemption in Blood" "Heart of Night" "Bad Timing" "Borrasca" "Line of Fire" "Asian Cut" "Hard Knocks" "Fruit of the Poison Tree" "To Have and to Hold" "Miami Squeeze" "Jack of All Trades" "The Cell Within" "The Lost Madonna" "Over the Line" "Victims of Circumstance" "Freefall" (Series Finale)

The "Lost" Episodes:
"World of Trouble" "Miracle Man" "Leap of Faith" "Too Much, Too Late"