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Five-0 Redux

No dry eyes after season five

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One of the things I love writing during the annual “Hawaii Five-0” hiatus is a best of list from the recently completed season.

When I asked fans last week in this space what kind of list they wanted to see this summer, I received the usual picks: best guest stars, best stunts, favorite villains and favorite bromantic moments, to name a few. But one of the best suggestions I got was to write about the moments that made me cry.

That got me thinking about season five — what touched me, what made me tear up and what made me openly weep like a child who just dropped her shave ice at Waikīkī Beach. There were many moments that left me wiping my eyes, and I wondered how many of you felt the same way.

I’m sure for some fans there are many episodes that fall into this category, but I whittled my list of “Five-0” moments that made me cry down to just five. Five seemed like a very short list, but I think many of you will agree with my choices. They are in chronological order from the start of the season until the end; I couldn’t rank them, because they all had an obvious impact on me and my tear ducts.


“Ka Hana Malū” (“Inside Job”) was the second episode with Aunt Deb (the legendary Carol Burnett), and this time viewers got to see her marry her new love and fellow cancer patient, Leonard Cassano (Frankie Valli).

There were many lovely moments in this episode, but watching McGarrett (Alex O’Loughlin) walk Aunt Deb down the aisle was the topper. I always cry at weddings, but when the bride sang to her groom, well, the tears were for more than just the poignant moment, but for the beauty behind the “‘S Wonderful” sentiment.


“Hoʻoilina” (“Legacy”) was sort of a prologue to the 100th episode, with John McGarrett (William Sadler) showing up in a flashback as his son works one of his old cases.

I often find myself a little misty eyed when John is in an episode, as it reminds us of Steve’s loss. So when Steve kissed a quarter and places it on John’s grave while talking to him about wishing he was there to enjoy his family, I’m sure I was not the only one wiping away a stream of tears.


If you didn’t get teary eyed during “Inā Paha” (“If Perhaps”), then you need to check if your heart is still beating. There were so many moments in this episode that left me dabbing my eyes.

I loved seeing McGarrett embrace his father and what his life would have been like had John never been murdered. The interplay with his kidnapper, Wo Fat (Mark Dacascos), was intense and did a great job leading fans to the weepy pièce de résistance when the team finally found Steve and saved him.

When Danno (Scott Caan) has to tell Steve that his father died four years before and that John wasn’t really alive — that just about broke my heart.


Fans love seeing Danno being a great dad to Gracie (Teilor Grubbs). In “Pono Kaulike” (“Justice for all”), viewers not only saw Danno trying to be a good father, but also a good friend.

Danno’s desire for justice and retribution even pertains to his own guilt about killing Marco Reyes (Anthony Ruivivar), the man who murdered his brother. But beyond his desire to cleanse his soul about committing murder, when Danno was sent to a Columbian prison, most fans were terribly worried about how Steve and the Five-0 team could possibly save him.

When he made one last phone call to Gracie while thinking he was just about to die, I could not contain my tears.


Of all the episodes, I thought “Moʻo ʻōlelo pū” (“Sharing Traditions”) was the most touching of all this season. The entire episode spoke to me on several levels, mainly by including so many connections to Hawaiian culture and tradition. The episode also featured the entire Five-0 team rallying to save their friend.

Showing Kono’s (Grace Park) strong relationship with the ocean, as well as to her mother, added to the beauty. I may have been teary-eyed just because of the moments of aloha that grabbed me during several scenes.

IN REALITY, I could probably write about several other scenes and moments from season five, but these were the main ones that popped into my mind. Whether the tears were in sadness or heartbreak, or because something happened between the characters that caused me to feel a sweet pang of emotion, they were all sincere reactions to the characters, acting and writing in the show.

Perhaps I’m just a big blubbering baby — or maybe I’m a half-baked cookie, all gooey on the inside, when it comes to the sweet and sad moments of “Hawaii Five-0.”
Wendie Burbridge is a published author, playwright and teacher. Reach her via Facebook and follow her on Twitter.

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