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Five-0 Redux

Marriage and murder

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One of the most famous wedding scenes ever has to be when Elvis Presley’s Chad Gates marries his Hawaiian girlfriend, Maile Duval, in “Blue Hawaii.”

If you don’t know the scene, Elvis sings “The Hawaiian Wedding Song” as he and his bride float down a river amidst coconut trees and pretty Hawaiian girls singing while bedecked in lei. Elvis is dressed in all white, with a red sash and red double carnation lei, while his bride is dressed in a beautiful purple holokū. Yes, purple.

I’m not sure what bride would allow her groom to upstage her and be the one wearing white — but remember, this groom was Elvis. No one can upstage the king. Not even a beautiful bride.

But the bride in this week’s episode of “Hawaii Five-0” definitely upstaged the groom and the rest of their beautiful Five-0 wedding party. Chin Ho and Malia’s nuptials have been the focus of all of the promos for “Alaheo Pau ‘Ole” (translated as “Gone Forever”) in the last few weeks. I know it’s hard to believe that many of us locals get married barefoot, in suit jackets, and sans ties. Just add garlands of flowers, the ocean in the background and someone playing a gentle ukulele, and you’re set.

But I’m with McG. Board shorts and slippers — finally, they used the correct local term for flip-flops! — should be appropriate beach wedding attire. And I was very pleased to hear the ceremony being delivered in Hawaiian and English by real-life Kahu Kordell Kekoa. It definitely added great authenticity to the happy moment.

This episode may have been called “Alaheo Pau ‘Ole” for several reasons, but for me, the biggest reason is not that Chin Ho’s single days maybe a thing of the past, but perhaps Steve’s relationship with daddy-stand-in Joe White may be gone forever. I think that once Joe comes clean with Steve they could probably patch things up, but right now, that secret seems to be one Joe is willing to protect, even at the cost of their friendship.

It’s sad how the mystery surrounding Daddy McG and “Shelburne” seems to be destroying not only McG’s current relationships, but also could cost him the good feelings he recently gained towards his late father. It has definitely ended his hero worship of Joe — and I’m not sure if that is repairable after these last few episodes.

As for the translation of “Alaheo Pau ‘Ole,” alaheo means “gone or departed.” And the words pau ‘ole (two words, not one) means “endless, unceasing, or always.” I think they may have gotten “gone forever” from “me ke aloha pau ‘ole” which means “with love forever.”

But according to Hawaiian language expert T Ilihia Gionson, “being gone isn’t generally something that would be pau, which means finished or ended, so by extension it couldn’t be pau ‘ole. To be pau, it has to start, right? How does one start being gone? You just are.”

Gionson said he would instead use the phrase “pau loa,” which means “very pau or pau for good.”

But poetically, “for good” can also mean forever, and forever is definitely a theme of the episode. Chin Ho and Malia pledged their love forever when they married, Sharon Archer came to the brutal realization that her son Sean was definitively dead forever, and a relationship Steve probably thought would last forever seems to have come to a stoic end.

Yet I really hope that McG doesn’t forget his past with Joe when their secrets are revealed, and can at least hold onto one of the few real friendships he has — so that not everything is gone forever.

Redux Side Note:

The character of Rafe Tong was played with nice believability by Hawaii-based actor Michael Ng. It was great to see the former Kaimuki High School Performing Arts Center and UH-Manoa graduate on “Hawaii Five-0.” Ng was most recently seen during the Hawaii International Film Festival’s premiere of “The Short List.”

Kala Alexander was also back in this week’s episode, playing the head of the Kapu, a fictitious “gang” of surfers who control Oahu’s beaches. This time, he plays it cool as potential suspect turned informer. Perhaps he will continue to return to “Hawaii Five-0” as a recurring character/informant like Kamekona.

I love how “Hawaii Five-0” keeps bringing back local talent, and cleverly keeps slipping in support for a very good cause — the Mauli Ola Foundation. Nicely done, “Five-0.”
Wendie Burbridge is a published writer, playwright and a teacher of literature and fiction writing at Kamehameha Schools-Kapālama. Reach her on Facebook and on Twitter.

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  • I certainly hope I’m reading too much into Joe’s behavior, because it’s beyond troubling to me. He wants to call Steve ‘son,’ and I’m wondering what kind of father would lead their kid around like a dog on a leash, only to pull back once the dog starts digging too much.
    Joe’s final line of the episode (“I was hoping you wouldn’t say that”) was really odd to me. He KNOWS Steve. He trained Steve. You would certainly think by now that Joe would realize there’s no way Steve is just going to let this go. And has Joe also failed to notice that the more he hides this information, the more people are getting hurt?  A few weeks ago he put that all on Steve, but the truth is, that responsibility lies much more with Joe. He seemingly has all the answers and he’s refusing to divulge them. By keeping Steve in the dark, it’s set off a number of events (including the death of Makoto) that Joe can’t simply just wash his hands of. It also disturbed me when Steve asked him point blank if he’d killed Hiro too. Joe didn’t seem like the type to kill in cold blood, but I’m not sure I believed him any more than Steve did. Which is to say – not at all.

    Edited to add: I would also have liked to see more of the wedding. There was way too much focus on the procedural this week, and it was confusing and uninteresting at that. I love Five-0 because they seem to know when to tip from one side (the character focus) to the other (the procedural). Last night, when the focus should’ve been more on Chin & Malia, it tipped so much in the other direction. It was disappointing that the wedding was only about three minutes of the entire episode.

  • Hi Wendie terrrific blog as always.  The wedding theme was just beautiful but you know I somewhat disagree with you regarding the relationship between Steve and Joe.  I think and forgive me for saying this but the navy seals aren’t the kind of aloha, touchy feely types if you know what I mean but that’s not to say that Joe and Steve’s relationship has turned sour. 

    I really believe that Joe is stepping in and being firm about keeping Steve out of the Shelburne thing to protect someone and to keep a promise to an old friend, to protect his family and Joe has sadly no family of his own but he has kept his promise to John to keep Steve safe during his training.  His father according to Joe was a good man and for Joe to tell Steve that the only time his father ever cried was at his mother’s funeral and when Steve had to go away.  This is not coming from a man who doesn’t care.  He also saved Steve’s life when Wofat almost killed him in North Korea.  I honestly believe we all should keep the faith a little longer and trust Joe to do what is right for Steve.

    Keeping secrets from Steve isn’t easy for Joe.  It shows on his face but its a job he has to do to prevent Steve from getting into further trouble.  Whatever Joe is doing, I don’t believe it has anything to do with any ties to Wofat.  He’s doing what he needs to do to stop Wofat from getting to the truth about Shelburne   Steve will know the truth eventually. 

  • Wendie, I was thinking about you last night when I was trying to figure out the meaning of the episode title “Gone Forever!”  I think I’m a faster learner than I thought! I picked up on the parent’s realization that their murdered son was finally, and irrevocably gone forever from their lives. But I also latched on to the fact that Steve and Joe’s relationship as they know it, could quite possibly be gone forever after that confrontation on the beach.  I don’t see Steve forgiving Joe for treating him as someone who still needs to be “protected” from learning the truth, especially if it concerns Steve’s family! Looking forward to where this all leads us when we get back together in January!

    Until then, Mele Kalikimaka to all my H5-0 friends!

  • It’s so cool Wendie that you brought up Elvis in Blue Hawaii because we actually got to see some of that wedding in the finale last spring.  And you’re right, it was funny that Elvis the groom got to wear white instead of his bride.

    Yes, the wedding was beautiful.  Short, but beautiful.  Malia’s dress was to die for and please, do me a favor, and remind me that the next time I get married, bare feet on the beach is the way to go.  Those lace covered 3 in heels I wore were a killer!! LOL

    Yes, I agree about the “Gone Forever!” meaning the realization that the murdered son was not ever coming back and I also feel it DOES also speak to the end of the relationship between Steve and Joe.  But just because the relationship they have always had is, probably, over, that does not mean that the new relationship between them will be bad. Just different.  Steve is coming to the realization that Joe isn’t the man he always thought he was and Joe NEEDS to start to think of Steve as an adult, not John’s son. 

    No the relationship between them, the one they have always had, may be gone forever but the new one they forge could be just as strong.  When Steve finds out what Joe is hiding, he will not be happy but if Joe is doing it for the right reasons, Steve will understand.  Oh, he’ll be pissed..for sure, but eventually he will come to understand.  He did, after all, understand why Jenna did what she did.  BAMF Navy Seal he may be…but Steve has a good heart.

  • Hi dearie! 
    Good thoughts and nice article. How about it being the end of Steve’s innocence….a “goodbye forever” to Steve being kept in the dark or “protected by Joe. Also, isn’t having a wedding kind of the same thing in a way too, Chin and Malia, bonding in a marriage of adults and equals, knowing everything about each other…the truth. It’s kind of like the whole episode could be looked at as all the truth is revealed and the we are saying goodbye to covering up reality.  Just my 2 cents.
    Dana In Vermont

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