Five-0 Redux: Believe in the team, Danno

Feb. 1, 2011 | 14 Comments

A Hawaiian luau turns into a nightmare when the body of a dead cop, who turns out to be Danny’s ex-partner from the Honolulu P.D., is found in the barbeque pit. Kono (Grace Park, center) and Five-0’s dogged investigation into the murder pits them against Internal Affairs, dirty cops and members of Hawaii’s most powerful cocaine cartel (Bronson Pinchot, left). Also pictured: Jonathan Seda, right. —Photo by Neil Jacobs/CBS

In the Hawaiian language “mana‘o” means belief. And when we Hawaiians are asked to give our mana‘o, we understand that it not only means to state our belief, but to also share our story. This episode is Danno’s story.

From the beginning we get to know the background about Danno and his former partner, Meka, the local cop he worked with when he first got to Hawaii. We also learn that Meka thought the same things that McGarrett seems to think: that Danny has fresh eyes, and that he can be trusted with his partner’s life. In this episode we begin to believe that Danno is more than just a sarcastic outsider to the islands, that he can drop the book ‘em attitude and the cop rule book, and get the bad guys no matter what the cost. Even tying a stuttering Balki Bartokomous, sorry, Bastille, played by Bronson Pinchot, to his Five-0 Camaro. Good way to give someone a nudge, Danno.

Sergeant Cage (Jonathan Seda) gave me a little clue early in the episode that the more we learned the worse we were going to feel. Like when we find out that our local darling, Detective Kaleo, played with deceptive innocence by our own Jason Scott Lee, was going to be bad. Really bad. It almost made me cry to see our local hero fall. I hope he gets to come back to the Five-0 screen, bad guy or not.

Our friend Kamekona (Taylor Wily) is back in this episode, giving the team a bit of kokua to guide them on their investigation. I can’t help but smile every time we see our friendly neighborhood shave-ice maker, even if he is standing behind a makeshift cart handing out blue ice-capped treats along with information about local drug dealing and vice.

When McGarrett doubts Danno’s belief in Meka’s innocence, and their relationship is jeopardized, I really admired Danno’s tenacity. He hung onto his gut feeling, the knowledge that Meka wasn’t the HPD mole. And Chin Ho’s back-story begins to come out as well when he tells Danno about his treatment by Cage and IA. Even though this is Danno’s story, I love how the writers show us a little more about Chin Ho and the pieces of his puzzle start to come together.

Danny Williams (Scott Caan, right) and Alex O'Loughlin. —Photo by Neil Jacobs/CBS

Danno and McGarrett, of course, make up, after Danno uses a bit of reverse psychology on his partner. His point that sometimes cops have to go with what they believe over what the evidence says, comes to a head as the episode wraps up with the bad guy getting it in the face. Sock ‘em, Danno.

So even though Danno didn’t accept McGarrett’s prom invitation, their bro-marriage is still intact. Because McGarrett knows Danny, and his belief in his partner, is the truth of their story.

No issues, Oprah.

—-

Wendie Burbridge is a published writer, playwright and a teacher of literature and fiction writing at Kamehameha Schools-Kapalama. Most recently, her story “The Cave Man’ was published in “‘Oiwi 4, Kupa‘a Makou ma hope o ka ‘Aina  (We Stand Firm Behind the Land) — Kanaka Maoli Voices on Annexation, Statehood, and Ceded Lands.” As a student at Gonzaga University she studied Theatre Arts and acted in and directed productions in Spokane, Wash. She also worked in Extras Casting for NBC and Warner Brothers on various television shows and films in the Pacific Northwest.

  • tawnliz

    I loved this episode because of the strong belief Danny had in his partner and friend also. It showed he had character and, no matter what the cost, he was determined to find and fight for justice; good point, Wendie. I also like the compassion Danny had for Meka’s widow and son in regards to restoring her husband’s good name, and what made me cry was when Danny gave Meka’s son the badge of his late father. Also, you made a great point re: Chin. I hope his name gets cleared to. He’s a good detective. I’m glad Kono believes in her cousin’s innocence. And, of course, I’m glad that Steve stuck by his partner, even when the situation looked suspect. Again thanks for your insight, Wendie. Another job well done!

  • Nanea

    Danno and McGarrett’s relationship (I mean the one on the show, not the one in my head) is the best thing about this show. I love the way it gets tested in this episode. Also, BALKI! Tied to a car! And now we do the Dance of Joy! Hey!

  • http://twitter.com/WendieJoy Wendie Joy

    My apologies, dear readers, for not mentioning how absolutely amazing they all looked in their dress up attire, sans ties even. Bravo, “Hawaii Five-0″ wardrobe.

  • http://twitter.com/H50undercover Officer 808

    Wendie- strap me to the hood of your car (face first so I can feel like I’m the “King of the World” Titanic style) and blaze down Kalakaua Ave. Let’s see how far we can get before someone notices. It looked like Danno and McG did 5 loops around Waikiki unnoticed. ;)

    But like you, I was disappointed that Jason Scott Lee was put in a bad guy role…the way the story is going though, his character may have to be revisited, because the mole knows who *all* the bad guys in play, probably even Wo Fat.

    Great write up! :)

  • Anonymous

    I missed the show when it first premiered, but am now catching up on it now that they are re-running the episodes. It is starting to grow on me, and last night’s episode was the best so far as they seemed to be doing some old-fashioned Police work instead of just depending on their magic supercomputer back at headquarters (Chin Ho appears to have received a PhD in computer science sometime in his past). My only real complaint is that the show is still just a little too violent. From what I can gather, the entire HPD only has a couple of officer-involved shootings a year. The 5-0 team has already shot dozens of people in just a few episodes. I realize that it is a television show and not a documentary, but I think they could stand to tone down the gunplay just a little.

    The best things about the show are Danno’s character and the beautiful cinematography. Hawaii never looked so good. Even though I’m a Californian (Bay Area), it’s fun to watch the show and realize “Hey, I know where that is!”

    I do enjoy reading your reviews Wendie. It’s nice to hear what a local thinks of the show. And perhaps in a future episode, they will need someone to play a Star-Advertiser reporter… I wonder who they could cast? ; )

  • Joe

    A little too violent? It’s way too violent. When they aren’t shooting, they’re threatening to shoot. Then there are the more imaginative ways of hurting people, like hanging them off roofs or speeding with them on the hood of your car, or hitting them with logs swung from trees. I’ll say one thing. If Hawaii is like that, I do not want to visit, ever.

    The best thing about the show is not Danno and Steve’s relationship. The best thing about the show is Kim Park …

    • Anonymous

      this isnt me fyi its a non fan! lol

    • Anonymous

      this isnt me fyi its a non fan! lol

  • Joe

    Oh, and I haven’t made it through a single episode. I can’t watch it anymore.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=851215236 Lisa Michelle Effler

    Wonderful write up as always, Wendie.  Personally, I would love to see Bronson Pinchot on the show again.  I loved it.

  • Anonymous

    A little foreshadowing maybe? Danny had blind
    faith that Meka was not the mole in HPD even walking out on 5-0 for a
    short moment when Steve questioned it. Will Danny show the same blind
    faith that Steve did not kill Jameson? Yes, I do believe he will. And
    the same way that Danny and Steve resolved their conflict over Meka so
    will Danny and Chin resolve theirs over Steve! I have faith in the 5-0
    Ohana!!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Bert-Hayling/792032993 Bert Hayling

    Hey, Wendie! Great redux, and great to read it again, especially with the events of the finale to mull over.

    I was struck watching it last night by how much of it could be extended forward to the situation with Steve falsely accused and arrested. In addition to showing us how loyal and devoted Danny was to his old partner, it showed how rock-solid his belief and trust in Meka was, how committed he was to protecting him and clearing his name. I can’t see how Danny could be any less committed to
    Steve and clearing him of the frame-up.

    I also like that Steve learned a pretty vital lesson there, too — that “where there’s smoke, there’s fire” is a cheap and lazy approach, that evidence and suspicion can be manipulated to bear false witness, that there are times, and people, where *knowing them* intimately enough — who they are, what they’re made of, what they stand for, that they have a good and courageous heart, that you trust them with your life, that you think of them as family and love them — means you know when to ignore or actively fight against falsehoods being spoken against them. It was majorly cool seeing how Alex played the moment when Steve realized he’d never believe something like that about Danny because he *knows* him.

    Danny and Chin — though admittedly Danny has further to go — have to get back to where they were at that bar that night, when Chin helped Danny get some perspective on the McGarrett way and then told him how much he appreciated what Danny was doing for Meka. That was a major
    friendship-building step for them both, that realization that Chin hadn’t had anyone like Danny to stand by him when IA was tearing his life apart, and that he *would* have him at his back from now on.

    I think the two of them, Chin and Danny, once they get on the same page, will be a formidable force on Steve’s side — Chin knows first hand what it’s like to be accused of something he didn’t do, how quickly people knuckle under and go along with the accusations, and Danny — Danny’s
    already fought tooth and nail to get Meka cleared of all the false accusations, and I don’t see how his loyalty, dedication, and affection for Steve can be anything less than what he felt and did for Meka — more like, Meka to the nth.

  • Anonymous

    awesome episode and im glad your posting summer stuff and reposting the blog to the episode i pick up new stuff every time i read it! way to go Wendie!!!

  • Anonymous

    awesome episode and im glad your posting summer stuff and reposting the blog to the episode i pick up new stuff every time i read it! way to go Wendie!!!