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Wrapping up season 8 of ‘Hawaii Five-0’

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    At the end of season eight, McGarrett (Alex O'Loughlin) is suspicious of Adam's (Ian Anthony Dale) role in the death of his half-sister Noriko, a known Yakuza boss and assassin.

For most people, June marks the start of summer– school is out, traffic lessens at a bit, and our beaches are a bit more crowded than usual. For “Hawaii Five-0” fans, it’s the start of four months of repeats and counting the days until the start of new episodes in September. While fans impatiently wait– they also have time to mull over all of the questions surrounding the ending of the last season. This summer is no different.

Usually, the ‘Five-0’ season finale leaves us in agonizing suspense. But in the eighth season finale, “Waiho wale kahiko” (“Ancients Exposed”), left us contemplating several dangling storylines rather than ending with a nail-biting cliffhanger. Still, fans are anxious to figure out the fate of many of our favorite characters– and to know the answers to some very important questions. Like what will happen to Sgt. Duke Lukela (Dennis Chun) after he basically took the law into his own hands in order to save his granddaughter’s life? What part did Adam (Ian Anthony Dale) play in the murder of his long-lost-but-not-missed half-sister Noriko? And will McGarrett (Alex O’Loughlin) and Danny (Scott Caan) EVER open their retirement-plan restaurant?

These are a few of the major questions fans are wondering about as they wait for season nine spoilers and behind the scenes photos start appearing online. Until September, when these questions will be answered with new shows, along with a 200th episode– all we can do is revisit the storylines and debate the possible outcomes. 

McG and Danno’s Restaurant
After an entire season of ridiculous banter about what a bad idea it is for cops to open a restaurant as a plan for retirement, it seems as if McG and Danno’s Italian Bistro in the middle of Chinatown– might be saved. Kamekona (Taylor Wily) who has a knack for business, and money that should be in a bank instead of luggage, has agreed to step in and help our dynamic duo. Kamekona dreams big– merchandising, franchising, cookbooks, sauces, and of course, t-shirts– but the bottom line is that he knows how to run a business. As he’s the only one they know who has had two successful eateries– his shave ice stand, and his shrimp truck– not to mention all of the money he has generated from merchandising his face and name, they could stand to listen to him.

In the finale, Kamekona, with Flippa (Shawn Mokuahi Garnett) and Nahele (Kekoa Kekumano), bring the boys two suitcases full of money to save their restaurant. He agrees to be a silent partner– unless the business makes it big, then he wants to cash in. He starts to fix up their restaurant space, making it on track to open, he gets them a liquor license, and he also suggests a name for the restaurant– Kamekona’s Italian Bistro– as more people on the island know his name in regards to good quality food. Branding– he has the name, and they need to use it.

Seriously, if they ever open this restaurant, I hope the only banter that McG and Danno engage in about it is when the team crashes there at the end of an episode to have a beer and antipasto– and listen to Flippa sing and play music while they discuss wrapping up the case.

The fate of Duke
In episode 8.22 “Kōpī wale no i ka iʻa a ʻeu no ka ilo” (“Though the fish is well salted, the maggots crawl”), Sgt. Duke Lukela, a trusted friend to Five-0, basically went rogue in order to save his moʻopuna, Akela (Cidni Romias), who has been kidnapped and held for ransom. The ransom was the key to a locker which held a million in cash– and Duke went so far as to tase a fellow officer to get the money to the kidnappers. Once McGarrett and Danny realized why Duke was acting more like the criminals he once helped them catch– they took over the case to try and save Duke. They rescue Akela, but not without Duke being shot, as well as putting his career in jeopardy.

In the season finale, a hearing was being held to decide Duke’s fate, and Lou (Chi McBride) was set to attend to give him some support– but as Five-0 was dealing a Russian submarine parked off the shores of Waikīkī, they were a little busy. Hopefully, Five-0’s absence from the hearing doesn’t hurt Duke’s chances of being reinstated. Yes, he broke the law, but under extenuating circumstances, and Five-0 did catch two sets of bad guys because of Duke’s actions– both the kidnappers and the drug dealers who stole the million, to begin with. Let’s hope that, and the fact that a little girl’s life depended upon Duke’s actions, will save his career.

The truth about Adam
Adam started off season eight with Kono on the mainland, as she chased after the sex trafficking ring Five-0 busted in Hawaiʻi at the end of the previous season. He returned home and seemed to fall into helping Five-0 with different cases, sometimes seemingly out of the blue. After most of the crime bosses on the island are assassinated and Adam advises McGarrett about a potential Yakuza take over of the island, McG asks Adam to head up a separate division of the task force specializing in organized crime. Who better to run it than the son of a former Yakuza boss?

Adam cut all his ties to his Yakuza past to be with Kono, but that has only brought him more trouble than he ever bargained for. Trying to do good ruined his honeymoon and eventually sent him to prison. While Adam’s intentions were to help McGarrett and use all the knowledge he has about the Yakuza to try and stop them, by the end of the season his confidential informant, ex-con Jessie Nomura (Christine Ko), is dead and the $20 million Adam removed from the unofficial Yakuza bank is gone too. Jessie seems to have been killed by Adam’s half-sister Noriko– who is the Yakuza boss that wanted to take over the island.

Because of Jessie’s death he quits Five-0 and leaves to the mainland to be with Kono— but the day he is set to fly off, Duke calls McGarrett to tell him that Noriko’s body was found washed up on shore. McG and Danny are wondering if Adam is the one who killed Noriko. The last scene of the season finale has Tani (Meaghan Rath) showing Junior (Beulah Koale) a gun she found in the junk drawer at Adam and Kono’s house. She casually found it lying there as she was searching the house for batteries for a dying smoke detector. Because if you work for Five-0 and you kill a major organized crime player in revenge for killing your C.I.– you’d leave your gun just lying around your house for your fellow Five-0 officer to find when she’s housesitting for you. Because that is believable. But no matter what the truth of the situation is– we can only hope Adam will come away unscathed.

Yet as they often say– we’ll have to stay tuned next season and see.

Wendie Burbridge is a published author, playwright, and teacher. Reach her via Facebook and follow her on Twitter and Instagram.

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