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Debut 'Five-0' season yields bests and worsts

By Mike Gordon

LAST UPDATED: 08:41 p.m. HST, May 16, 2011

If you've watched "Hawaii Five-0" every Monday since the pilot aired in September, chances are you've amassed a highlight reel for season one — favorite scenes, choice character comments, the occasional "da kine" faux pas, and shout-outs to isle food, places and things only locals would appreciate.

We did some brainstorming and came up with our own list of "Five-0" faves — all meant with aloha.

» Best turn by a major guest star: Comedian Dane Cook, who played Danno's kid brother in a surprisingly effective performance.

» Worst misuse of a major guest star: Grammy winner Rick Springfield as a womanizing swimsuit photographer who was blown to smithereens before the opening credits.

» Best love interest: Catherine Rollins (played by Michelle Borth), who got under the sheets with McGarrett. Go ahead, try to make a case for Chin Ho's old flame (Reiko Aylesworth) or Danno's ex (Claire van der Boom), but the verdict is clear: Borth is just that hot.

» Best recurring character: Taylor Wily's Kamekona. The corpulent informant-turned-shave ice entrepreneur wound up in 13 episodes and delivered some of the funniest lines to date. We see a big career ahead of him. You like bet?

» Most awesome murder: That's easy — Danno's former police partner cooked in an imu.

» Best false crack: A bikini-clad Kono getting all aggro with the tourist who dropped in on her while surfing in the series pilot. Honorable mention: McG's roundhouse kick to level Coach Tanaka from "Glee."

» Best example of police interrogation techniques: It's a tie between the time McG left Max Casella in a shark cage and when Danno lashed Bronson Pinchot to the hood of his car and sped through Honolulu.

» Most convincing local heavy: Another tie, this time between Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa as a yakuza boss and Kala Alexander as the head of a local surf gang — despite the fact he hangs out at a Waikiki tourist resort and sips Blue Hawaii cocktails.

» Favorite villain: Mark Dacascos as the evil Wo Fat, although he hasn't had enough screen time yet to erase from our minds the indelible Khigh Dhiegh from the original show.

» Top name-checks for local consumption: Liliha Bakery Coco Puffs, Side Street Inn, Punahou, Club Femme Nu, Lex Brodie's and Spam.

» Most notable concession to mainland viewers: Chin Ho referring to slippers as "flip-flops."

» Most blatant product placement: When Kono and Chin Ho "Bing it" on a smartphone. Also getting heavy airplay: Hawaiian Airlines, Chevy and the Hilton Hawaiian Village.

» Best use of local talent: Dennis Chun as Sgt. Duke Lukela. The son of the original Chin Ho Kelly, Chun reprises a role from the original series.

» Best performance by a local landmark: The old Ho-nolulu Advertiser building, which serves as HPD headquarters, Halawa Prison, the city morgue and also houses the entire "Five-0" production, from the sawmill for sets to the costume shop and casting office.

No doubt fans will be discussing their own picks at tomorrow night's "Hawaii Five-0" Finale Viewing Party, sponsored by honolulupulse.com, from 7 to 11 p.m. at Apartment3 in Century Center. I'll see you there.

That's a wrap …

Mike Gordon is the Star-Advertiser's film and television writer. Reach him at 529-4803 or at mgordon@staradvertiser.com.

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