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Things We Learned About Hawaii From Hawaii Five-0, Episode 21, “Ho’opa’i”

April 19th, 2011 by

Update:  The correct title is “Ho’opa’i”, which can be translated “to punish” or “revenge”, depending on context.  Read more on the Hawaiian meaning of the word at Wendie’s blog, the Five-0 Redux.  Thanks to the eagle eyed speakers of Hawaiian for pointing that out. :)

“Ho’opa’i” recap described through the collected works of Puffy/Puff Daddy/P.Diddy

Alex and Diddy, Photo: CBS


After he’s been around the world working undercover for the FBI, Officer Reggie Cole sneaks off to Oahu to visit his family for a short break.  His own son doesn’t recognize him at first, but all becomes well after a father and son talk.  With Barry White music playing in the background we later see Reggie and his wife in a heart to heart, where she pleads with him to leave his undercover work and rejoin the family after two years of being away.  He tells her “I love it when you call me Big Poppa,” but that he has to finish the job he started to bring mob boss Jimmy Cannon to justice.

Early in the morning, the family reunion is interrupted when two masked thugs break in, kill the FBI escorts and murder his gorgeous wife.  The Five-0 team responds to the call, Reggie reveals who he’s after and the chase for the murderers begin.  The trail eventually leads to mob kingpin Jimmy Cannon, who is having some spam, eggs and rice with his son, Richard.  But, seriously how many of us would continue to sit at breakfast after cops go crashing through your beautiful solid wood gates of your compound?

Meanwhile, Reggie proves that ain’t nobody can hold him down and busts out of the hospital to go looking for the murderers himself.  McG and Danny realize Reggie didn’t do it and they team up.  The trail eventually leads to the Silent Librarian (Nelson Lee played by Zero Kazama) who confesses that Richard was the one pulling the strings.

Back to the Cannon compound, and Reggie accuses Richard, telling Jimmy that in the end, it was all about the Benjamins that Richard was after.

For hugs and fist bumps, the crew say good bye to Reggie, while young  Kevin looks up into the clouds wondering to his mom, “Every move I make, every step I take, every single day, every night I pray, I’ll be missing you.”

Fin

Were you paying attention?  Find out tomorrow why!

Did Diddy do it or didn’t do it for you?

Last night’s episode “Ho’opa’i” was penned by Shane Salerno and Peter Lenkov and featured guest star Sean “P. Diddy” Combs.  A lot of Five-0 fans were lukewarm to the news of Diddy becoming a guest star on the show, hesitant that a hip-hop star can be one of the few who can successfully cross over from their respective platform to the screen.  CBS promoted the episode heavily and featured his new song “Coming Home”.

I myself enjoyed the episode, it was well written and directed.  I liked Diddy’s portrayal of the character, and he had a great scene with McG in the interrogation room.  Generally speaking he was great throughout the whole episode but he did seem a little awkward in the interrogation of Nelson (Zero Kazama) and his “heaven and hell” lines.  I noticed how the Five-0 team took a step back to allow Officer Reggie (Diddy) navigate the episode.  Chin was barely visible, Danny bantered with Kono and McG for a bit, but not much.  McG had some great lines …”I WORK FOR GOD AND THE GOVERNOR” ranks up there with “YOU WANT THE TRUTH?” (Jack Nicholson, “Few Good Men”) and “I AM THE LAW!” (Sylvester Stallone, “Judge Dredd” just had to throw that in).

Though toned down in this episode, the banter between McGarrett and Danny is funny.  But the banter between Kono and Danny is cute.  Sometimes I wish I could banter with Kono.  I’ll do it all day long…but I digress.  Am I the only one to notice that there definitely is chemistry with Kono’s playfulness with Danny’s snarkiness?  We first saw it with the surfboard lesson in the tidal wave episode, and in front of the strip club with the fake texts in the superhero episode, and we saw them making out (acting) at the gambling house…  Typically I’m not a big fan of cast inbreeding, where characters hook up within a group as the series develops.  I mean really, is Rachel with Ross or with Joey?!?  Likewise I think Danny and Kono getting romantically linked in the future may make for an interesting story, but would be a huge distraction from the team dynamic, and would detract from the Danny/Rachel story.

Speaking of Grace Park, the last two episodes allowed for her to do a lot more with her acting ability.  Her character had notification duty to the survivors of the victim in last week’s episode, and this week she had to console Kevin after showing him the photo lineup.  Small scenes like this are critical for the development of Kono, and I’m happy that Peter and the writing crew are building a lot of this into the stories…I still would love to see a another Kono centric story.

Rounding out the story arc

Peter Lenkov mentioned that when he sketched out the season very early on in the inception of Hawaii Five-0, he had an idea of several story arcs that he wanted to see through, and fulfill important character development.  In this episode we finally see one of the unsung secondary characters shine (literally because of the glaze), and that character is…Spam.  Like Mary Ann McGarrett in the first half of the series, Spam has been largely missing from our favorite show.

For those of you who found my blog only recently, let me reacquaint you with Hawaii Five-0’s relationship with the Hawaii’s fine delicacy:

A reporter asked Alex O’Loughlin about Spam, with his reaction.

My delicate sensitivities are offended.

Further investigation reveals Grace Park’s and Masi Oka’s attitude towards Spam.

And my open letter of reconciliation for  crew of Hawaii Five-0 for their snubbing of Spam.

Kamekona didn’t surprise me when he fixed some ono [delicious] Spam fried rice with eggs for McGarrett, but what surprised me was how quick McG disowned our “Hawaiian steak”.  What kind of local boy is he?!?! I mean braddah dodged Kamekona’s fork the same way Keanu Reeves dodged bullets in the Matrix.  I think Alex was speaking for himself and McG when he said that he didn’t eat the stuff.  But like I said in an earlier post, the people of Hawaii don’t want to be responsible for Alex developing any Spam handles, so carry on.

So what happens to Spam next?  Will McG put it on a plane back for Los Angeles?  Will it meat (get it?) an untimely end in the season finale?  Stay tuned!

And now, Things We Learned About Hawaii From Hawaii Five-0, Episode 21, “Ho’opa’i”

1)       You can mix Spam with anything and it’ll taste good, eggs, fried rice, salad, ramen noodles.  It truly is the “nectar of the islands.”

2)      Hate to say it, but New York City officers got an edge over HPD, Reggie hog tied three of them!

…did you notice?

One of my Undercover Special Agents got a lot of BTS photos of the Cannon compound.  Check out the Facebook page “Right Place Right Time – Fan Photos 2011 album.  Also check out the youtube page for BTS on the gate crash.

Actor Zero Kazama (Nelson Lee, the second assassin) is the host of MTV’s Silent Library.  Set in a “library”, contestants win money by doing stunts without making too much noise.  If they exceed a certain decibel level, they lose.  If you enjoy pranks, then watch this show.

If you haven’t picked up on it by now, one of the major themes of the season is the father-son relationship.

“Ho’opa’i” means close to heart.

P. Diddy interview on Hawaii News Now; “Coming Home” video

April 19th, 2011 by

Report by Teri Okita, watch the vid below (courtesy @lankyguy):

His song “Coming Home” was featured heavily in the promos and the episode itself:

P. Diddy BTS on Access Hollywood

April 18th, 2011 by

P. Diddy behind the scenes on Access Hollywood-check out the clip with Maria Menounos.

New photos on Facebook…Kelly Hu and Daniel Dae Kim

April 17th, 2011 by

A few new photos uploaded to Facebook today…some candids that Kelly Hu (@33edge) uploaded to twitter, and a few of Kelly and Daniel Dae Kim working the phone banks at the Kokua For Japan fundraiser last weekend.  Check it out!

Kelly Hu and Daniel Dae Kim at Kokua For Japan fundraiser. Photo: Tina Lau

Best birthday eh-vah: a BTS report

April 15th, 2011 by

For all you Scott Caan fans, here’s Undercover Special Agent Diamond X, reporting about the first day of finale shooting April 4th.  See the rest of her photos on Facebook.

I was waiting for my friend near the Territorial Building when I saw Danny’s silver Chevy Camaro passing by in front of me and parking next to a Hawaii Five-0 police car. I realized that all this commotion right next to me was Five-0 filming!

I walked towards the crowd but so many people were standing there that I could barely see anyone or anything. I got a better angle and got a really good view of everything. I tried to get as close as possible without “crossing their line” to try to see something. I was getting so excited looking all around and suddenly saw him…he was sitting in his chair, the one and only the handsome Scott Caan! I stood there smiling and wanting to scream in excitement but of course I kept it cool…

Scott was sitting in his chair right beside Teilor Grubbs.  Scott was leaning over looking at whatever it was she was playing with and talking to her.

I looked behind them and saw a black Mercedes-Benz car. Everyone was busy working on it getting it ready for the next part of the scene shot.

Scott and Teilor were then called back to the set and ready to shoot. He walked on over towards the black Benz and while he stood there waiting for his cue, he busted out some random dance moves. It was too cute and so random! I learned that this scene they were shooting only involved Danno and his daughter Grace.

As he went back to his seat and waited some more for the next shot, he had his dog Dot with him. He played fetch with her for a bit before he was called back to shoot the last part of the scene again.  When they were done with that scene several guys yelled out “that’s a wrap for this scene!” I also saw Claire van der Boom around as well.  With the scene done, they left.

I was sort of bummed that I wasn’t able to get a photo with Scott. But then again seeing him in action, and just being able to see him period made me really happy. I mean how many more people could say that they saw Hawaii Five-0 filming? I was really excited, happy, and really thankful that I got a chance to experience that moment. I have declared that day the best birthday ever! =)

Chef Morimoto’s “Ma Ke Kahakai” viewing event

April 15th, 2011 by

Chef Morimoto held a special viewing event for Hawaii Five-0′s 20th episode, “Ma Ke Kahakai” at his Morimoto Waikiki restaurant this past Monday.  As you know the Chef had a cameo appearance in a scene filmed at the restaurant.  Unfortunately the Chef did not appear that night as he went back to Japan unexpectedly for a family emergency.  Several Five-0 cast were spotted, including Kelly Hu, Daniel Dae Kim, and executive producer Peter Lenkov.   Peter gave a quick interview to Hawaii News Now:

Some photos of the event:

Morimoto Waikiki, Hawaii Five-0

Morimoto Waikiki, Hawaii Five-0 Photo: Undercover Special Agent Juiced

Morimoto Waikiki, Hawaii Five-0

Morimoto Waikiki, Hawaii Five-0 Photo: Undercover Special Agent Juiced

Morimoto Waikiki, Hawaii Five-0 Photo: Undercover Special Agent Juiced

Hawaii Five-0 syndication rights sold to TNT

April 14th, 2011 by

From Broadcasting and Cable:

CBS Television Distribution has sold rookie drama Hawaii Five-0 to cable net TNT.

The market for the show was opened by a preemptive bid by an unidentified cable network, which immediately set prices at $2-plus million per episode. In the end, Hawaii Five-0 sold in the mid-$2 million range, on par with what two of the last big dramas – Warner Bros’ The Mentalist and CBS’ NCIS: Los Angeles – each received.

The off-net deal begins on TNT in fall 2014. The deal also includes digital rights so that TNT can provide the show on demand and online to its subscribers via Time Warner’s TV Everywhere initiative.

What does this mean?  Hawaii Five-0 is not leaving CBS, and we’ll continue to see new episodes on that network.  TNT bought the syndication rights to show repeat episodes and have exclusive rights to show Five-0 on demand to cable subscribers.  The deal begins in 2014, because theoretically by that time, CBS will have produced a hundred episodes of the show.  That’s the magic number that networks look at before sending a show off to another network for syndication.

This however, does not automatically guarantee the show for another three seasons (as much as we want it to), but it would be in CBS’s best interest for the continued success of the show in order to cash in on TNT’s huge offer.

A big mahalo to all those on twitter who helped make sense of this news!

I <3 u

April 13th, 2011 by

Undercover Agents- Yesterday on the podcast, Mike Buck gave me a second to acknowledge the fact that my 50undercover.com blog has grown immensely over the past few weeks, and I just wanted to repeat what I said on the air, that you all are the greatest fans in the Hawaii Five-0 fandom, and this blog wouldn’t be what it is without your thoughtful comments and your incredible enthusiasm.  I couldn’t name you all, but thought about everyone of you. :)

Thanks also to Peter Lenkov, Paul Z, and Erika for taking the time to chat to the fans last week.  Also a big thanks to all the writers, actors and crew who take time out of their schedule to connect with the fans!

I <3 u

Talking Story with Mike Buck on AM 830 KHVH Honolulu Talk Radio (Hawaii Five-0 podcast Apr 12)

April 13th, 2011 by

Here’s audio of my Hawaii Five-0 talk story session with Mike Buck yesterday on AM 830 KHVH.  We gave a run down of the episode, talked about the scenery of the episode, ratings, Chin’s and Kono’s car scene, P. Diddy coming up next week, spoilery finale talk, and Daniel Dae Kim’s tweet up.

Officer 808 on the Mike Buck Show, April 12, 2011, for “Ma Ke Kahakai” (25:06)

Things We Learned About Hawaii From Hawaii Five-0, Episode 20, “Ma Ke Kahakai”

April 12th, 2011 by

Getting better with each episode

I was surprised the other day when I heard a nationally syndicated entertainment reporter say that he thought the writing for Hawaii Five-0 was getting worse.  I’m not sure if he’s watching the same program as the rest of us, but the Elwood Reid written episode “Ma Ke Kahakai” had it all…action, humor, emotion, and all the good stuff that goes along with it.

There were a couple of edge of the seat moments, and I’m sure a lot of people gasped when McG took a fall down the cliff, and also when Danny and Chin took a flying leap off the pier onto the boat pulling away.   The bantering was toned down but fit the scenes perfectly: “Eat another doughnut!”.

An underlying theme is the role of fathers in the show.  McG opened to Danny about John being a great father.  Compare that to victim Jack Leung (Joji Yoshida) who wanted to provide a better life for his son and grandson by taking on a second job, and resisting the temptation to make easy money running drugs.  This is a far contrast from the elder Rutherford who’s misguided love for his son drives him to murder himself.

But I think the episode struck a perfect balance of advancing the story line with the procedural aspect of the episode.  Their aunt in failing health, Chin and Kono go to an impromptu family reunion.  There Kono finally finds out that her sick aunt might have something to do with the money disappearing from the evidence room and Chin’s dismissal from the HPD.  In the corner of her eye she sees Chin in a heated confrontation with her uncle about money.  As they drive back to HQ, Kono pulls over and finally confronts Chin about the money.  While the scene completely revolves around Chin, Grace Park totally made the scene happen.   Grace had a lot of range to work with in that scene, and hands down, this in my opinion was the strongest scene in the series so far.  It captures the cousins wrestling with another moral dilemma…does one choose family over duty…or duty over family?  Chin believes in loyalty to family which is why he took the fall for his uncle, to save his aunty from the pain and humiliation.  Kono chooses duty, and insists that Chin comes clean after their aunty passes.  I would imagine that they would be on the same page, and that the two of them would protect their family first.  But in “Kai E’e”, Kono tells Chin that taking responsibility for the missing $10 million was “the right thing to do”.  Little nuances like this show Kono to be the moral compass of the group, reflecting her idealistic youth, fresh from the police academy.  What would you choose?  The end was especially bittersweet, with the friends joking at the Tropic’s bar, but Chin and Kono finding out their aunty has passed away.  Ultimately, Kono laid it down to Chin to come clean after their aunt passes…will he do so?  And how does his fiancée Malia fit into this?

Lost, Hawaii Five-0 and location

Kaaawa Valley, Kualoa Ranch, Hawaii Five-0

Kaaawa Valley, Kualoa Ranch, Hawaii Five-0. Photo: vidcap from CBS

Steve and Danny are not Sawyer and Jack.  They are not running from the Others, or a Smoke Monster.  But they’re hiking through beautiful Ka’a’awa Valley, home of Kualoa Ranch, which also served as Oceanic 815 survivor’s golf course and frequent stomping ground.  I’ve talked about how gorgeous the show makes Hawaii look, and the cinematography hasn’t been this great since “Palekaiko” with both episodes framing our Five-0 heroes within the immensity of Hawaii’s outdoors.  If you haven’t booked a flight here yet, you really ought to.  CBS.com is currently featuring a websiode series called “Hawaii Undiscovered” which tracks Hawaiian adventures featured in the series.

Hawaiian music

The episode showcased two local groups, “Ho’onu’a” and “Hapa”.  Ho’onu’a’s “Feel Good Island Music” played in the background when Kamekona picked up McG at the hospital.  Hapa got some airtime at the end of the episode, playing their popular song “Olinda Road”.  Go check out these local groups, and I’m hoping we hear a lot more Hawaiian music in upcoming episodes.

Hiking with Steve, (not) brought to you by Mastercard

Roll of duct tape…$4.99

50 feet of rope…$99

Extra tight butt harness…$49.99

Slim fit Combat Cargo Capri Hiking Pants from Old Navy…$9.99

Red checkered picnic blanket (not shown on camera)…$9.99


Getting bro love? …Priceless

I <3 you, Steve.

Photos: CBS, vidcaps from CBS and Sewn Natural.

And now, Things We Learned About Hawaii From Hawaii Five-0, Episode 20, “Ma Ke Kahakai”

1)       “Ki’i pohaku” (“images in stone”, or petroglyphs), are rock images carved into stone by the ancient Hawaiians during the pre-Western contact times.  They were not a written language, but pictographs of daily life.  The petroglyphs shown in last night’s episode I believe was a mock up, but it showed a turtle (“honu”), warriors, and an image which has been interpreted as a mother birthing a child (below the turtle).

Petroglyphs, Hawaii Five-0

Danny and Steve at the petroglyphs, Hawaii Five-0. Photo: CBS

2)      Chin says to the drug dealer, “The dealer comes after you, chops you into little poke and feeds you to the sand sharks.”  Poke (pronounced poh-keh) is cubed raw fish (tuna, “ahi” in Hawaiian) that can be served in a variety of ways.  Don’t let the fact that it’s raw detract you…it’s ono [delicious]!  At Foodland supermarket, they prepare and season it in a variety of different ways, they’ll let you sample anything they have.

Foodland's poke bowls. Photo: Foodland.com

And on another culinary note, Chin asks Kono if she wants go for a loco moco at Ono Laulau.  While I don’t think there’s an Ono Laulau restaurant, I can tell you that a loco moco is the most epic of breakfast meals…two scoops of rice topped with a hamburger patty, an egg, and gravy all over everything.  It truly is the breakfast of Hawaiian champions.

Loco moco. Someone get me a defibrillator, I'm going in! Photo: su-lin

3)      We have no professional teams, hence McG has never been to a professional baseball game.  That being said, we have a God given right to cheer for any team that happens to be popular at the time.  There’s a period when everyone was a Dallas Comboy fan, everyone was a Chicago Bulls fan…you get the idea.

Did you notice…?

I loved Chef Morimoto…he played it perfectly.  Regarding Danny holding the fish:  “Yes.  Good size.”

“Ma Ke Kahakai” means “shore”.

Renee Nobriga (Sandrine the waitress) was Miss Hawaii 2010.