Since the start of “Hawaii Five-0,” the theme of loyalty has fueled their storylines and been an important element that has sustained the veteran series. This week’s episode, titled “Loa‘a pono ka ‘iole i ka pūnana” which is Hawaiian for “the rat was caught right in the nest,” focuses on a case of the week which has Grover (Chi McBride) and Tani (Meaghan Rath) working together on a murder investigation. Two secondary storylines, which deals with loyalty between several members of the Five-0 ʻohana, helped to strengthen the episode.
Written by Kendall Sherwood and Chris Wu and directed by Antonio Negret, the episode wove two far more interesting subplots between the mediocre case of the week. One story has McGarrett (Alex O’Loughlin) supporting Danny (Scott Caan) who wants to find the father of a boy who has been bullying his son, Charlie (Zach Sulzbach). Another dramatic storyline has Adam (Ian Anthony Dale) in Japan trying to find support from the Kumicho, the family head of the Tokyo Yakuza, which brings into question his loyalty to Five-0.
GROVER FLIES UNDER THE RADAR
The episode starts with Grover setting out to play 18-holes at the Ali’i Aina Golf Club, when he is asked by the club’s head of security, Zev Shaham (Alon Aboutboul), to discretely investigate a murder that has happened in their locker room’s cryo-chamber. The victim is Chuck Tsao, a shady local businessman, who is notorious for betting with other members on their golf game. With Zev’s help, Grover figures out that Chuck is not only a big loser but also a big cheat, which gives him a long list of suspects to choose from.
Zev becomes Grover’s partner in the case, mainly in order to allow the investigation to fly under the radar and keep the other guests from realizing that someone has been killed at their members-only club. Yet several members of the Five-0 ʻohana also pitch in to help find Chuck’s killer. Noelani (Kimee Balmilero) explains to Grover how Chuck basically froze to death when he was subjected to “a negative-200-degree chilling blast of evaporating liquid nitrogen for over ten minutes,” and Tani helps Grover back at an empty Five-0 headquarters. Grover sends Duke (Dennis Chun) to lead an HPD raid on Chuck’s business and he finds over $120 million in cash. Duke has CSU examine the bills and finds they are counterfeit.
The title of the episode, which is a traditional ʻōlelo noʻeau or Hawaiian proverb and poetical saying, literally means “the fellow was caught red-handed” which is basically how Grover finds Chuck’s killer, Michael Mayfield (played by “Hawaii Five-0” stunt coordinator Paul Lacovara). Seems as if Mayfield was working with Chuck in order to launder the counterfeit money and when Grover and Zev confront him, they find that one of his clubs had the same the indentations that are the same distance apart as the handles on the cryo-freezer which he barred in order to flash-freeze Chuck.
DANNY’S EMOTIONAL SUPPORT
While Grover and Tani work the case of the week, McGarrett and Danny are meeting with Charlie’s principal (Victoria Platt) to address Charlie being bullied by Blake (Logan Ace Jenkins) another boy in his class. Danny is obviously upset about finding out that Charlie not only has been bullied but that Charlie never told him about what was going on at school. Both the principal and McGarrett tell him that Charlie is probably embarrassed about being bullied, and McGarrett even admits to Danny that the first few months when he was in military school, he was bullied, pretty relentlessly. “The kids were brutal,” he says.
The scenes between McGarrett and Danny are what fans want to see each week. Danny saying that McGarrett is “basically Charlie’s uncle” and McGarrett telling the principal that he is Danny’s “emotional support friend” was more confirmation of their loyalty toward each other. When they track down Luke (Coby McLaughlin), the father of Blake, it only takes a few minutes for the two dads to come to a mutual understanding. Once the men get Blake and Charlie together with McGarrett’s dog Eddie, even the children are able to make peace.
It was nice to see Danny counsel someone who wasn’t a suspect or a victim in one of their cases. And his advice to a fellow dad who is going through a divorce, and trying to still be a decent parent, was heartfelt and honest. It’s nice to see Danny and McGarrett together again and in a situation that allows them to share their friendship with someone outside of the Five-0 circle.
THE QUESTION OF ADAM’S LOYALTY
The final scene of the episode was one that leaves the question of Adam’s loyalty unanswered. It’s clear that Adam is making decisions because he has chosen to be with Tamiko and feels that he must pledge himself to the Yakuza in order to protect her. But when the Kumicho (Michael Hagiwara) tells him to “return to your task force on Hawaii, to be my eyes and ears inside Five-0,” Adam balks saying that it would make him and Tamiko a target. So the Kumicho’s question about where Adam’s loyalty lies remains to be seen. Hopefully, he has not strayed so far that even his Five-0 family cannot save him.