I have been seeing a lot of discussion on Twitter in the last couple of weeks, this week especially, on what some folks are seeing as a “changed” McGarrett. They are bemoaning that, in their opinion, there has not been enough Steve in the first 4 episodes of the season, the writers have not yet addressed all of Steve’s “issues”and that Steve has not been “himself”, has not been all BAMF nor the SuperSEAL we have all come to know and love. I’ve been reading these conversations and scratching my head in confusion.
I’m going to assume that all of these complaints, in the minds of those tweeting, are related. Related in the sense that they all stem from the fact that, indeed, the show has not yet addressed Steve’s “issues”. Personally, it is my belief that TPTB wanted to tell the Danny/Matt story first, not because they were actually any more interested in Matt than the rest of us, but to use it as a means to set up events to come for Danny and for Steve as well. Any attempt by Steve to either help Danny, or even chastise or fight with him over what happened in Columbia could very well bring Steve’s “issues” more out in the open, may actually force Steve to face them as he never has before. It is very possible that Danny and Matt’s story is, essentially, a building block to Steve’s.
It is also my belief the complaints that Steve is “changed” also stem from the disappointment that Steve’s “issues” have not been addressed yet and people are seeing what they want to see in Steve’s actions and behaviors. If Steve is being wheeled out of the hospital and is sitting quietly while his FIVE friends are having spirited conversation around him, some people are seeing a subdued Steve, lost in his thoughts, remembering all his “issues” instead of seeing a man who has been shot, stitched up and probably on pain meds sitting back and enjoying the company of his friends. I could be 100% wrong in my assessment but then, so could they. It’s all a matter of interpretation.
But, honestly, the more I read those tweets, the more I thought maybe I’m just missing something here. So, even though I have already watched the four episodes a few times, I went back and watched again. This time paying special attention to the so-called “changed” Steve McGarrett and I have to say…. I STILL don’t see it. To me, he looks, sounds, and acts just like always. It is true that in these episodes there hasn’t been as much badass SuperSEAL but that’s not because Steve is different, but because there just wasn’t any need for much of it in these 4 particular episodes. These episodes had some great action and stunt moments but for the most part there wasn’t an over abundance of car chases, gun battles or fist fights. It’s a little hard to be badass SuperSEAL walking the halls of HQ delivering lines and lines of exposition.
In the pilot, everyone including Steve spent a lot of time walking around crime scenes, HQ and the magic table trying to figure out how to protect the island and take down the drone. When the drone did attack them out on the street, Steve, trying to protect a homeless man, took a bullet in the leg yet still took off on foot and ran down one of the suspects……. on foot…..with a bullet in his thigh! The only reason Danny got the big gun battle was because Steve…had a bullet in his leg…. so he ran after the slower bad guy.
In episode 2 they were trying to find the daughter of the Navy SEAL. But there weren’t any gun fights, or car chases and Steve, along with Danny, spent almost the entire episode in the home of the other parents waiting for the kidnapper to call. A little hard to be a BAMF in that situation.
In episode 3, we had the 3 girls holding up tour buses. Again, a lot of walking around and a lot of exposition. But in the one scene where there was a lot of gun play, Steve almost got run down by the escaping car but did a nifty roll to his feet to keep shooting. The main suspect in that case gave up without a fight. I suppose he could have barreled in, guns blazing and just shot her for good measure but it really wasn’t necessary.
In episode 4, we had two rather long scenes of just other people talking and Steve listening. First, the FBI woman giving the team all the intel on Valentine on the big screen and then Valentine himself telling his “change of heart story” in the hospital. But also in this episode Steve ran full tilt after hit man #1, then after he was killed ran full tilt again, through oncoming traffic on less, bobbing and weaving through moving cars, then leaping over a crashing patrol car to shoot at Valentine. He also, just like everyone else, took down his man at the compound where those people were hidden. As a matter of fact, his man put up more of a fight than any of the others and Steve took him down, like always. Then with Danny, took out 4 or 5 heavily armed goons in that basement in Columbia.
Now if the people seeing a “changed” Steve are taking the 3 minutes at the end of the last episode, where Steve stood by and let Danny take his revenge as PROOF that this is not the same Steve McGarrett we’ve always had…… I’m going to repeat myself…. I just don’t see it.
Tonight’s episode is very Steve centric. The first real Steve centric episode of the season. Danny’s arc is done for the time being. I wouldn’t be surprised if Danny isn’t even in Oahu for tonight’s episode, probably back in Jersey dealing with his family over what happened to Matt, so there will be tons of Steve. But there are other stories out there to tell and while Steve’s is and has always been the central figure in H50 he is not the be all…end all of the show. There are SEVEN main cast members now and everyone deserves a chance to shine in their own right. Besides, Alex being asked to be all BAMF SuperSEAL for 25 episodes might just put the man flat on his back again. No one wants that. Every single actor on this show is exceptional. Alex may lead that list but he is not the only shining star on this show. Personally I’m happy to see everyone get a bit of the spotlight.
That doesn’t mean I’m not really looking forward to seeing the show begin to address Steve’s “issues”. I agree it’s about time they did. I’m looking forward to watching Alex totally KILL those scenes. That man has never disappointed me when given truly meaty material to work with. I know he will NOT disappoint me now. He NEVER does!