After last week’s exciting season 10 start, it was a nice surprise for “Hawaii Five-0” to turn around and deliver another action-packed episode. As McGarrett (Alex O’Loughlin) and Danno (Scott Caan) are now older and definitely wiser, it’s the younger Five-0 members or “The Kids,” Tani (Meaghan Rath) and Junior (Beulah Koale) who are taking the dangerous risks. Still, the episode solidified the Five-0 theme about the team being there for each other no matter the obstacle or the threat.
This week’s episode, “Kuʻi pēʻia e ka makani ʻāpaʻa” is Hawaiian for “Knocked flat by the wind; sudden disaster” and it certainly has several characters knocked flat by the unexpected. Written by Talia Gonzalez and Bisanne Masoud and directed by Karen Gaviola, the episode has Five-0 working to save Tani and Junior after they are trapped in a collapsed tunnel. The cave-in is orchestrated by Jackson Wilcox (Marc Menchaca), a former drug kingpin, to help him escape from federal custody.
The title, which is not properly spelled in the press release, is a revision of the ʻōlelo noʻeau, “Kuʻi pēʻia e ka ʻĀpaʻapaʻa,” which means “pounded flat by the ʻĀpaʻapaʻa wind.” This is said of “a sudden and terrible disaster, or of one who has taken a beating. The ʻĀpaʻapaʻa is a wind of Kohala.” It is interesting to note that while “Hawaii Five-0” has used traditional ʻōlelo noʻeau as titles for their episodes since season six, they seem to want to use them in a more literal sense than in the manner in which Hawaiians actually use the poetical sayings. Still, many Hawaiians are thankful that the series even bothers to use our language in their titles, as it does give many non-Hawaiians around the world exposure to our beliefs and culture.
EDDIE SAVES THE DAY — TWICE
The episode starts off where we ended the season opener last week — with a bomb in the Champ box. While fans have speculated all week the meaning of the bomb in that particular box, as the Champ box, as it has been called since season one, is tied to McGarrett’s past and has plagued him since the murder of his father in the first episode of the series.
Thankfully, the bomb is found by the one creature that would sense the contraption beyond human capabilities — Eddie the dog. Eddie alerts McGarrett by barking at the door of the garage. As he continues to bark, McGarrett realizes that the former DEA detection dog has picked up on something and immediately calls the bomb squad to investigate. Lou (Chi McBride) arrives to help and tells McGarrett the device they found was set to go off later that night when he was sure to be home. He also tells him that he “might want to consider giving young Eddie a special treat” for alerting him.
But that’s not the only heroic thing Eddie does in the episode. When Tani and Junior are cut off in the tunnel, McGarrett decides to get the hero dog to bring the pair a walkie talkie so he can help get them out. McGarrett has Eddie smell Junior’s flack jacket and a bag full of Tani’s beach gear and sends him through a small passageway after kissing his nose and offering several affirming words. When Eddie emerges through the rubble to find Tani and Junior, they are thrilled to see him, almost as much as McGarrett is to hear Tani’s voice coming through the handset.
THE KIDS ARE ALL RIGHT
Really, it’s Tani and Junior, who bring the theme of the title full circle. After spending the morning surfing together, they come upon the tunnel collapse on their way back to Five-0 headquarters. They, of course, move in to help, even after McGarrett has told them to wait for HFD to access the situation. The episode really starts as they find two murdered agents and realize that the cave-in was not an accident, which leads Five-0 to begin looking for Jackson Wilcox. Watching them work together to get out of the tunnel and help the injured civilians is what makes the episode exciting to watch.
We certainly love Tani and Junior together — but it would have been nice to see more of the relationship that started to blossom last season. After Junior’s rescue rope breaks as he is being lifted out of the tunnel, he falls back down and is knocked out flat on his back. It is Tani who goes back to bring him home. She seems worried, but not as worried as perhaps a woman in love might be in this situation.
So are they going to be a couple or just best friends who work together? As Five-0 meets at McGarrett’s for a deserved backyard barbeque and a couple of beers — and a steak for Eddie the hero who helped rescue nine people from a collapsed tunnel and helped save McGarrett from a bomb — we can’t help but notice how Tani brushes off her offer to get Junior a beer as just trying to help the guy who has a head injury. Perhaps it takes more than just a sudden disaster to get the kids together this season, but we’re certainly ready to watch that unfold in the months to come.