Book This, Danno!By Michael Karol Posted: Sep 21, 2010
If you're a fan of police procedurals and gorgeous scenery, handsome men and beautiful women — and come on, who isn't? — prepare to make time for the reboot of HAWAII FIVE-0. The new series has decorated ex-Naval officer Steve McGarrett (in the hunky form of Aussie Alex O'Loughlin) returning to Oahu to catch the low-life smuggler (actually, his brother; it's a long story) who killed McGarrett's father. In no time flat, McGarrett's asked to head a new task force by Governor Pat Jameson (Jean Smart, excellent as always, but underused; note to showrunners: when you've got gold, mine it!)…with the proviso, of course, that McGarrett can use whatever time he makes to find dad's killer.
He assembles his elite branch of the Hawaii State Police in a seemingly random manner…at first pissing off, then slowly winning over (and just barely, by pilot's end), the non-native (haole in island patois) cop in charge of the investigation into his father's murder, Danny Williams (Scott Caan, in a likable 180-degree turn from his sleazy agent on ENTOURAGE). McGarrett also runs into former officer Chin Ho Kelly (Daniel Dae Kim, relocating, but not too far, from LOST) during his investigation; Kelly was wrongly disgraced and discharged, but McGarrett trusts him, since Kelly was mentored by McGarrett's father. And Kelly just happens to have a hot cousin (Grace Park, ex-Boomer of BATTLESTAR GALACTICA) who has almost graduated from the police academy, but is more than ready to kick badass.
We get to see how the nickname Danno was coined, and watch the quartet gingerly begin working together. As noted, it's pretty, fast-paced, and there's even a bit of international intrigue thrown in to update it. HAWAII FIVE-0 is escapist entertainment that won't force you to think too hard (one wonders if that was part of the attraction for Kim, after LOST…other than staying in Hawaii, of course). Its CBS timeslot was formerly occupied by CSI: MIAMI…another procedural that takes place in a tropical clime and is populated by beautiful detectives (David Caruso being the, um, exception). I like FIVE-0 better because it doesn't take itself as seriously as Caruso does.