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Critics give ‘Five-0’ mixed reviews

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  • CBS
    “Hawaii Five-0,” which premiered yesterday, stars Alex O’Loughlin, left, as Steve McGarrett and Scott Caan as Danny “Danno” Williams.

CBS’ "Hawaii Five-0," one of the most heavily promoted shows of the new fall television season, had its network premiere last night.

Here are some excerpts of what the critics are saying:

New-wave ‘Five-0’ is not that bad

It’s almost impossible to mess up a series shot on location in Hawaii and featuring Grace Park in a bikini. You would have to make it turn it into a sci-fi comedy to really mangle it. Although the first 15 minutes may have you thinking they’ve overdone it on the action steroids, the show calms down after that. You’ll get Scott Caan as Danny "Danno" Williams and Daniel Dae Kim as Chin Ho Kelly. Park plays Kono Kalakaua. There appears to be no Wo Fat of yet, which almost kills it, but perhaps he’ll surface later.

"Hawaii Five-0" is nothing but entertainment. It’s eye candy. Waves, sun, island culture. A bad guy surfaces, McGarrett goes to work. Danno books him. End of story. Sometimes there are gun battles. Fists fly. That’s all there is, folks. It’s not rocket science. True, watching the original is more fun. And more cheesy. But waves are waves. Hawaii is still pretty.

And if you’re looking for anything deeper than that, you’ve landed on the wrong island. "Lost" is over. Let your mind take a break. — Tim Goodman, San Francisco Chronicle

‘Five-0’ remake a tropical treat

CBS has presented viewers with an exciting gift this fall. Their "Five-0" update not only doesn’t stink, it’s an action-packed, easy-on-the-eyes thrill ride that is slicker and sexier than the original series that aired from 1968 to ’80. It also contains a sense of humor that the stone-cold serious Jack Lord version lacked.

Stepping into Lord’s shoes as Detective Steve McGarrett, Oahu’s crime-fighting Big Kahuna, is Alex O’Loughlin, who after two strikes with CBS ("Moonlight"; "Three Rivers") is getting his third — and probably final — swing.

And what a contrast he brings. Gone are the lacquered black pompadour, steely stare and granite jaw. Yes, O’Loughlin’s McGarrett is still a stoic man on a mission, but there’s an engaging hang-looseness to him. He prefers T-shirts to dark suits and isn’t shy about stripping them off to show off his rippled abs. — Chuck Barney, Contra Costa Times

Like most remakes, ‘Five-0’ is contrived

As remakes usually are, "Five-0" is too contrived. CBS pulls Alex O’Loughlin out of mothballs to play Steve McGarrett after the failure of "Moonlight" and "Three Rivers." He’s still handsome, but no longer a vampire, nor a doctor. Now he’s the world’s greatest Navy action hero (hey, it works for "NCIS"), who returns to his home state of Hawaii, where Jean Smart has segued from interior decorator ("Designing Women") and first lady ("24") to governor.

She gives him carte blanche to round up the villains. But first he rounds up the new cop — after they meet cute, pointing guns at each other. Danny Williams is just in from Jersey so he can be closer to his daughter, who called him "Danno" because she couldn’t pronounce "Daddy." See what I mean by "contrived"? — Jonathan Storm, Philadelphia Inquirer


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