So after all the hype it was finally time for the Hawaii Five-0 premiere. From the first few minutes to the opening sequence. I was floored. I mean wow. This is TV? Either my expectations were low or this was some high production quality TV. The title sequence, though updated, echoed the sequence of the original series, with the new McGarrett on the Ilikai, the shot of the Lady Columbia statue at Punchbowl, and the camera fixed to the police motorcycle zipping through Honolulu at dusk.
Right off the bat, the characters are engaging. Alex O’Loughlin, as the new McGarrett with his military background goes for expediency, while Scott Caan’s Danny Williams tries to keep McGarrett within the lines of acceptable law enforcement. The biggest difference between The New Series (TNS) and The Original Series (TOS) is the fact that both McGarrett and Danny are both Alpha males, each trying to assert themselves over the other…this is going to make for great TV. This is a far call from James McCarthur’s Danno, who was definitely the subordinate. Daniel Dae Kim, off of the sixth season of Lost plays Chin Ho Kelly, who shares a past history with the McGarrett family, but carries with him the reputation of being a crooked cop. Grace Park returns to TV to play yet again, a former male character Kono Kalakaua (played by Zulu) reinvented as a female, like her role as Boomer in Battlestar Galactica. She is a former pro surfer turned cop and is cousins with Chin Ho, learning the ropes and earning her keep.
The screenplay, chases and fighting sequences definitely play out like a movie, with very high production quality. The episode ends leaving the overall season’s story arc a wide space to play out…what else is in the red toolbox? Did Victor survive being shot and falling into Pearl Harbor…? We’ll see!
This list evolved out of the smart (a$$) comments that came about from discussions with other locals…so some of this might fly over the heads of you Haoles, so just bear with us. 🙂 It goes without saying that Hawaii Five-0 is a TV show. It’s not meant to be real. Some of the portrayals of Hawaii, locals and Hawaiian life will definitely irk and offend some, but come on… if you wanted reality, watch Jersey Shore.
And now, “Things We Learned About Hawaii From Hawaii Five-0” Episode 1, Pilot
1) Shave ice is a delectable desert for the most discriminating of palates.
2) We talk the “bird” [pidgin English]. CA-CAW!
3) Hawaii is a hotbed and hub for international terrorism and human trafficking.
4) We don’t like Haoles. I mean, we *really* don’t like Haoles.
3 responses to ““Things We Learned About Hawaii From #H50 ″ Episode 1, Pilot”
Things I shall miss (other than Alex/Steve):
1, The theme tune, probably one of the best ever.
2. Alex saying, in his Steve voice, “previously on Hawaii 5 O”….
3. The bromance. I know some didn’t like it , but especially in the early years it was very funny.
4. Scenes of Hawaii. I will probably never get there but for an hour I WAS there.
5. The Ohana. Even in the early days of show they had their regulars: thank you Duke, Max, Grace, Rachel, Jerry, Flippa, and Kamakona, Pua, and all the other familiar faces. You made the show more real.
I’m very sad but hopeful that the end will be as good as the beginning.
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I cannot say exactly how I will feel after the final credits roll tonight. On some level happy that we are getting to see Steve do what many fans demanded- move on with his life. No longer will he be living each day fixing broken toys and going home knowing the next day will bring more of the same. I will be sad, too, at the loss I believe we will all feel when there are no more stories to tell. So I am hopeful that PL may allow us to get some updates on McGarrett’s life as Magnum progresses. Perhaps we may see him as a guest some day. I hope so.
Both the character and the actor who portrays him deserve some peace, happiness and downtime.
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And we learnt much more than that during the first seasons about Hawaii: heiaus, imus and kalua pig, kapu places, ohanas, omaukas, leis and more. As a Hawaii lover, I’ve been investigating all these traits of Hawaiian life, which has been very useful when at last I could go there. Did you know for instance that there is a specific way to wear a lei, to receive it and to dispose of it when it is withered? Or that the first words of the fascinating song at the sea funeral in epi 1.6, ‘Ua mau ea o ka aina ika pono’ (The life of the land is perpetuated by righteousness) are the state motto in Hawaii?
I read the infuriated letter to the Honolulu Star-Advisertiser from a local reader who screamed that the Hawaiian people were not represented in H50. Of course not! The show has never claimed to be a pure reflection of Hawaii, but it has been respectful and done a lot to promote the islands. Alex has done a lot too, often stating publicly that he loved Hawaii and did not want to leave ever.
A pity that this line of Hawaiian-ness was gradually lost. In my opinion, it made the difference. All posterior stories could have taken place in Chicago, LA or Pittsburg.
Well, you tonight will know what road Steve has decided to take. I wish him (and Alex) happiness and don’t be too sad, my friends. It’s been a great weekly appointment with the TV set during 10 years and now is the time to face another journey.
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