Forgiveness is something that once offered, relieves the person who forgives. It sets them free from anger and bitterness which allows them to move on. In this week’s episode of “Hawaii Five-0” the theme of asking for pardon, is evident not only in the case of the week but also a secondary storyline which deals with Junior (Beulah Koale) and the man who killed his sister in a drinking and driving accident.
This week’s title, “Hewa ka lima” which is Hawaiian for “The hand is at fault” is a ʻolelo noʻeau, or Hawaiian proverb and poetical saying from Mary Kawena Pukui’s book. Hawaiians used the phrase when they “believed that when one has done wrong, the hand is smitten with a disease that remains until he asks for the pardon of the person he injured.” The episode, written by Paul Grellong and Sean O’Reilly, focuses on the return of Aaron Wright (recurring cast member Joey Lawrence) who comes to Five-0 supposedly a changed man.
Directed by Peter Weller, the episode is heavy on action and tension, but light on clarity. The case of the week was a series of red herrings that became even more convoluted as the case progressed. It just seems so odd that they keep allowing Wright continued access to a computer. Yet beyond the ridiculousness of Wright’s return, the episode does allow the main characters to shine as they deal with the case and other conflicts in their lives.
JERRY DELIVERS A MEAN RIGHT HOOK
After Tani (Meaghan Rath) expertly disarms Wright in her living room, she delivers him to Five-0 headquarters. Wright is greeted by Jerry’s (Jorge Garcia) right hook — a justified response for Wright’s role in the murder their friend Toast (Martin Starr) in season eight. The team does not react to the punch, as they understand where it comes from, but they are surprised by Jerry’s anger as he is usually more forgiving. Yet they fully support his distrust of Wright, even after they hear his story of supposedly turning over a new leaf and joining the NSA.
The government has put Wright to work using his hacking skills to combat cyber terrorism by setting him up with a small team in a “listening station” on Oahu. But it seems as if one of his NSA coworkers, Tim Aquino (Gabriel Kennedy), was using the NSA cyber tools, which were meant to be used to protect national security, as a way to blackmail everyday citizens. Adam (Ian Anthony Dale) and Jerry theorize that this is what caused blackmail victim, Alan Kinross (Howard W. Bishop), a CEO of a medical device manufacturer, to want to kill Aquino and Wright’s team.
THE TRUE HAND AT FAULT
While Wright gives them a hand in order to find the evidence to arrest Kinross, McGarrett sends Tani and Junior to lure out the men who killed the NSA agents. Unfortunately, McGarrett’s plan works like a charm and the hitmen find the two rookies and shoot an RPG at them. Tani tries to evade and flips their car and they are left as sitting ducks. McGarrett is able to save the day and take out the hitmen, which concludes Wright’s case.
As Wright says goodbye to Five-0 he cheekily asks McGarrett if he has room for him on his roster, and makes the mistake of mentioning the amount Aquino got from blackmailing Kinross. Jerry, already suspicious of Wright’s helping hand during the case, takes another look at Aquino’s finances.
He and Adam realize that Wright set the whole thing up — getting Kinross and his company to take the fall for paying the hitmen and making himself look like a victim.
McGarrett tries to tell Wright’s NSA handler, Flores (José Zúñiga), but Wright is too wily and catches on that Five-0 has figured it out. He kills Flores and escapes. But it looks like the May 17 season finale may bring closure to Wright’s story, as Five-0 will continue to hunt him down.
GIVING A PARDON TO ANGER
After wrapping up the case of the week, Junior and Tani are at the parole hearing of Palani Kuewa (Jeffrey Omura) the man who killed his sister, Maya. Junior is there to represent his family and make a statement in order to convince the parole board to keep Kuewa in prison. Junior is certainly surprised when Kuewa admits his mistake and says if there was any real justice then Maya would be alive and he would be in her place. He does not ask Junior’s family for forgiveness, because he says he will never forgive himself.
As Junior is about to ask the board to deny Kuewa’s parole, he crumples up his statement. He tells them that in his line of work he sees people who are beyond reform and beyond forgiveness — but Kuewa is not that kind of man. He says that the hate he felt toward Kuewa is blocking out the good memories of his sister and he can’t give that anger any more power. It is like he’s asking the parole board to free his sister’s killer and later when Tani tells him she thinks he did the right thing — he wonders if his father would feel the same. If nothing else, perhaps the disease has been stricken out of Kuewa — and out of Junior as well.