After last week’s episode, I think “Hawaii Five-0” fans were hoping for a “breather” from the intense drama and edge-of-our-seat action. You know, perhaps an episode where we could laugh at a few Kamekona jokes, see a few half-clothed team members, and let our knuckles return to a normal color. But, of course, our Five-0 Team can’t take a break just to appease our inner need for bromantic banter and shirtless McG shots. This week, we get a different view of the team—all dressed up and ready to show off their handsome faces and pretty collarbones. A fancy auction, complete with several plugs of local sporting events like the University of Hawaii Warrior Football team, as well as the famous ‘ukulele player Jake Shimabukuro, and a whole lot of international intrigue and Governor induced conflict, really put the team back on the hot seat.
And for the Five-0 Team, the hot seat is where they spent most of the night, dealing with appeasing Governor Denning, as well as trying to solve a nearly disastrous Cold War-flavored crisis. This week’s episode, “I Helu Pū,” translated as “The Reckoning,” was definitely an episode of settling disagreements and the team being held accountable for their actions—most particularly in Officer Lori Weston’s case, as she is faced with making some tough decisions between her duty to the Governor and the Five-0 Team.
From the start of the episode when Weston is asked to choose between Hawaii and Five-0, I had a feeling we would be losing our Homeland Security “babysitter,” but I was hoping for a super SEAL save by McG and the Team. And while we had a shocking sack of the criminal across the hood of a speeding car, which eventually lead to the team solving the case and settling a potential Russian invasion of Hawaii, that was not enough to save the score for Lori. I have to say, the team had more than just the one tough tackle in this episode. McG catching a potential suspect on the edge of a roof, Danno’s take down of potential suspect #2, Chin Ho trying to break through a touch defensive line of Russians, Nurse Kalakaua completing a blood steal so it could be tested—all perhaps to show us that our team could easily join the Warrior team and enjoy Lori’s parting gift on Aloha Stadium turf.
Alas, the repercussions of their actions were swift and a tad bittersweet. Lori giving her resignation and admitting her complete buy-in to the McG way of investigating showed how close the Team is to being broken up into little Governor sized pieces at any time. This is the most we’ve seen Richard T. Jones all season, and his commanding presence and no-nonsense attitude was a different twist to McG and the team sweeping in to save the day. It was a little hard to keep track of what was going on, as I wasn’t a huge fan of the non-linear storyline. The jumping around in time made the story too disjointed for me to follow without the help of the handy rewind button on my DVR. I thought there was enough conflict and mystery to unravel, and to have the episode jump back and forth to explain what was going on made it difficult to follow at times. Perhaps “Hawaii Five-0” was trying to incorporate the instant replay to keep us glued to the game, but for me, it didn’t work to keep the action flowing.
For the most part though, the episode had great moments of fun, and lots of cool action—enough for us to keep us watching until the final minutes to see how the game played out. I particularly loved the running one-liners about football tickets, appropriate Valentine presents, and the scenes with McG and his sometimes lady, Catherine (Michelle Borth). And did anyone notice that Danno made a comment that he had to buy a Valentine present for Gabby (meaning recurring character Dr. Gabrielle Asano, played by Autumn Reaser)? I guess many of us may have to face the fact that the Rachel ship may have sailed.
As for the final score, it seems as if the Five-0 is now a tight four-formation. The guest team members Lori Weston and Joe White are gone for now, but they still have their special teams made up of Max, Kamekona, and Fong. But the Five-0 team is back to basics and I just hope the Governor lets them stay that way.
Redux Side Note:
Popular Waikiki entertainer and radio personality, Kimo Kahoano, played the hotel security guard, Jake Almeda, who helped McGarrett at the Victoria Chase crime scene. Kahoano is a popular Hawaiian entertainer who was in several episodes of the original “Hawaii Five-O.”
At the auction, Chin Ho wins a personal ‘ukulele lesson from ‘ukulele virtuoso Jake Shimabukuro, who is well known for popularizing a mix of jazz and rock with classic and contemporary Hawaiian music. The ‘ukulele was brought to Hawaii by the Portuguese, who came to work in the sugar cane fields, and was adopted by Hawaiian musicians and famously promoted by King Kalākaua, which led to it its becoming a well-known symbol and sound within Hawaiian music.
Catherine’s desire to be drinking beers at Haleiwa Joe’s, can be on your list of things to do when you come to Oahu, as it is a popular seafood restaurant located in Haleiwa on the North Shore. The restaurant is located near the beach and you can enjoy your beers while watching the sunset.
Speaking of restaurants, Max’s late night sneak-out for pancakes to the “Wailana Diner,” was a reference a popular late night eatery in Waikiki—the Wailana Coffee House. This popular restaurant is located on Ala Moana Boulevard across from the Hilton Hawaiian Hotel. It is well known for its popular breakfast menu and all-you-can-eat pancakes. Sorry, McG, they do serve an awful lot of spam.
Wendie Burbridge is a published writer, playwright and a teacher of literature and fiction writing at Kamehameha Schools-Kapalama. Reach her on Facebook and on Twitter.