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Five-0 Redux: No death wish here
BY WENDIE BURBRIDGE / Special to the Star-Advertiser
Oh, “Hawaii Five-0,” you definitely made me laugh out loud this week. And while I was laughing at several of the tongue-in-cheek jokes, I was still very engaged in the interesting procedural and secondary Max storyline. Yet I couldn’t decide if the crazy fan stalking Victoria Secret models subplot was just an advertisement for the Victoria Secret Fashion Show, which is to air tonight on CBS. Or if perhaps it was just a way to give Danno a few moments of happiness — even if it was just for a short stint on a beautiful girl covered couch.
But all in all, I did enjoy the episode. There was great action in the opening scene with a bank robbery gone wrong, and Max getting the digits of cute bank teller Sabrina Lane (played with natural sweetness by guest star Rumer Willis). I found it charming that Danno was tasked to protect a bevy of beauties in this episode. I have been asking for Danno to have a bit of good luck and an hour of happiness, and of course, even though he’s tracking a stabby stalker, he seemed to be in heaven. (He did say it was the happiest day of his life, talking to super models, showing them pictures of his darling daughter.)
Lucky Danno, I’m sure he was very happy to hang out with Victoria Secret model Behati Prinsloo, who stretched her acting chops by playing herself, rather than hang out with aneurysm-face McG. Her explanation of how difficult it is to be beautiful, I mean, how hard it is to model, almost moved me, and did make me think of the idea of fantasy verses reality.
So when I began to take apart this week’s episode title, “Hā‘awe Make Loa,” translated by CBS as “Death Wish,” I thought that the entire episode definitely gave McGarrett and crew a taste of what some will go through when their want for death — as a fantasy or in reality — is more than just a wish.
In Hawaiian, “hāʻawe” means “to carry a burden on the back,” and “make loa” means “to die.” As there is no direct definition of the word “wish” in the Hawaiian dictionary, so the closest we can get to the idea of a “death wish” would be the metaphoric idea of carrying the burden of wanting death to come. Such was the case for guest star C. Thomas Howell — I will try not to call him Ponyboy for the rest of this post — who played bank robber Martin Cordova. Cordova is a former contract killer who has found a way to beat his terminal cancer diagnosis: Death by McGarrett.
Since that is pretty much an equivalent to a death wish, this title possibly works.
I suppose I can wax poetic for a few more paragraphs when I think of all the burdens one would carry when diagnosed with a fatal disease. And when facing death, to what lengths they would go through to make sure their loved ones are taken care of as well as how they could end their suffering sooner than later. Both Ponyboy (sorry, I grew up in the ’80s, so sue me) and shooting victim/bank heist mastermind Jim Rogers (Lochlyn Munro), who were both diagnosed with cancer and both wanted to die before the real problems began, make a reciprocal deal. Rob a bank, get shot in the process, and perhaps save a few people and look like a hero.
By working with someone who has basically nothing to lose — because they are dying of cancer too — we’re back to the death wish theme.
So, Max dealing with a potential love interest unfortunately being shot minutes after she confirms a date with him — holy bad luck Max Man! — and McGarrett being kidnapped to perform suicide by cop, mixed with the sadness of desperate men trying to find a way to deal with the suffering and death of cancer, all made me want more comedy and lighthearted moments. I’m not sure a half-naked, grass skirt-clad, hallucinating bank robber sufficed for a lighthearted moment, but it was funny.
The entire ending scene with Gracie getting pampered by the VS models and McG and Danno grilling Kamekona about stealing police identities, felonies, bribery and free lunches was a nice way to end the episode — and slide right into the Victoria Secret fashion show.
I was glad to see Max being let out of his lab to pursue other interests, like girls who are alive, and you all know I was a big fan of the all the “Fonger” screen time we got, as Brian Yang was in several scenes in this episode. When he hands Kono the LED-laced “Island Hotties” sweatshirt, I couldn’t help but laugh at his show of personality. Great to see a little more of Fong’s personal side even in the few scenes he’s given.
This was a nice episode for the “Five-0″ four. Kono and Chin Ho were completely active in this procedural, and McGarrett got to save a carjack victim after the coolest foot chase over rooftops since McG climbed onto the roof of the Five-0 headquarters in the finale episode of season one. And Danno, of course, got to save the supermodel.
The one thing that bugged me? Doesn’t anyone get a hug after they’ve been saved from a harrowing experience? I mean, if McG pulled me out from in front of a speeding semi-truck, or if Danno killed my stalker — I’d want a hug, dammit. Well, Danno did get a kiss in the end, but alas, no digits.
I have to say, I was a bit relieved to not have to negotiate through any Momma McG drama. It was nice to get a break this week from that story arc. And while the McG/Danno carguments took a little bit of a backseat, we did get a “Book ‘em, Danno” that wasn’t that awkward.
If I could wish for anything, it would be that we have more of these kinds of action-filled, funny, entertaining procedurals from the “Five-0″ crew. No death wish from me, that is for sure.
Redux Side Note:
A couple of Hawai‘i actors had some nice screen time this week. Actress Z Zoccolante played Denise Pope, Behati Prinsloo’s stalker. She very much looked the part, so I was happy to see smiling, lovely pictures of her on her website.
Local musician Shawn Mokuahi Garnett played Kamekona’s cousin, “Flippa.” He may not look like Danny Williams, but he sure looked like he was in Victoria Secret heaven. Check out his music videos on his website.
Wendie Burbridge is a published author, playwright and teacher who lives and works in Honolulu. Reach her via Facebook and follow her on Twitter.