It’s always amazing to realize that although you’ve known a person for quite a long time you really don’t know them 100%. Oh you may see them every day and know their everyday likes and dislikes. You may work intimately with them and know the way they handle themselves in certain situations and know they will always have your back. You may even call each other …friend. But there is usually always a part of that person you don’t know. A part they keep private. What experiences shaped their lives, what events in their past, perhaps all the way back to their childhood contributed in making them the person they are.
We have known Kono Kalakaua for five years now and yet there is still so much about her we didn’t know. We didn’t know what it was that drew her to the sea and her love of surfing. We never met her parents or even heard anything about them. This episode gave us more in one evening then we got in the previous five years and I, for one, loved it.
And while I would have loved if the entire episode had been dedicated to Kono’s story I thought this week’s crime was a perfect one to share the episode with. First because it wasn’t a complicated story that required a lot of brain power to keep up with it and it was over quickly so we could concentrate on the important part of the episode.
What I also liked about the crime of the week was the way it tied into Kono’s story. Not directly, of course, but the children in both story lines were influenced and affected immensely by their respective parents. So while it is true that the sins of the father are often visited upon the son it is also true that the warm loving embrace of Nani Kalakaua and her passionate love for Hawaii, the traditions of the people, the land and the sea was the single most influential presence in Kono’s life and the person who made her the incredible person she is.
As I said before, the crime of the week was not a complicated one but it was a sad one. When Chin recognized Makai Akana, a man he helped put away years ago, on surveillance footage robbing a pharmacy, it isn’t too long before they are able to track him down and discover he’d gone back to cooking meth. However, he wasn’t doing it for himself this time, but because his son had been taken and if he stopped, his son will be killed.
How sad it was to discover that it was none other than Akana’s own son Carter who was the mastermind behind the scenes. Carter who grew up without a mother was tossed into the foster care system when he father was sent to Halawa. It ruined his life. He blamed his father and saw forcing him to start cooking again as justifiable revenge as well as a way to make money. In his mind, it was his due inheritance from the man he considered dead to him.
The only reason why I was totally surprised it was Carter was because, quite honestly, I wasn’t really paying all that much attention to the story. I just wanted them to hurry up and solve it so we could get back to Kono.
I also found it hard not to feel extremely sorry for Akana who, once he was released from prison wanted nothing more than to be with Carter. That the idea that he could have a second chance with his son is what kept him going in prison. I really liked it when Chin told him “keep moving forward” because he still had that second chance for redemption..this time, for himself.
But, of course, the best part of this episode, was Kono and her misadventure out at sea. There is no way to recap the incredibleness of all the scenes involved in Kono’s story so I’m just going to hit what were for me…true highlights.
• I loved how the episode started…Kono already in the water and in the middle of the storm. Nothing like being thrown into a heart stopping situation right off the bat. It wonderfully set the tone for the entire episode.
• How could anyone not adore the entire Ohana turning up to see Kono off on her journey? This show has always been about Ohana and though we may have started off with only our four favorite broken toys, today it has expanded to a large loving family who are always there to support each other.
“OK..I’ve got her…open the trunk…we’ll throw her in”
• The look on Kono’s face when the car pulled up and she realized her mother and father had come to see her off was a special moment. Knowing that she was doing this for her mother and that with all her disabilities her mother needed to be there to see her off. What a wonderful bond there is between these two women!
• I’m sure I’m not the only one who is going to comment on the really awful makeup job to age Nani. The make up department on this show is always so stellar it’s hard to understand how they got this so wrong. But, then again, Catherine Haena Kim who played Nani is just so stunningly beautiful it probably made it nearly impossible to make her look bad. I think I’ll give the makeup department a pass on this one.
• As I said at the beginning of this post, we may know people for a very long time and there will always be things we never know. When Chin explained how Nani had an aneurism a while back I got the feeling that Steve may have known about it even if the others didn’t. As Chin explained it to Danny, Grace and Lou, Steve stood back, as if he already knew what had happened.
• Mahalo to my friend Wendie Burbridge and her fantastic Five-0 Redux for explaining the “ha,” or breath which Kono shared with Kawika and also her mother. According to Wendie “Ha is what gives aloha its deeper meaning.” What a beautiful tradition!
BTW, if you don’t read Wendie’s Redux every single week you are missing out on something great. Make sure to check it out every single week at http://www.honolulupulse.com/2015/05/five-0-redux-sharing-traditions/
• Everyone waving Kono off from the beach, including her parents is my favorite shot of the entire episode!
• And isn’t it totally cool that Kono set off on her journey from the very beach where she rode her board for the first time.
• We have always known Kono is a strong woman but if there was ever any small doubt, this adventure sealed the deal. Almost as soon as she sets out, the weather system she was sure she was going to miss comes down on her like a fury. In one fell swoop she loses her outrigger, all her supplies except for one small bag and her paddle board. What she doesn’t lose is her determination, her courage and, in this case, the most important thing. Her memories.
• Damn that wave looked like “The Perfect Storm” wave!
• Who didn’t get just a bit sick when Kono caught and ate her own sushi?
• I know I’m not the only one who breathed a sigh of relief when Kono got her SAT phone to work only to have it blow out of her hand. When Kono jumped off her board in an attempt to retrieve it I literally yelled at my TV… nooooo don’t leave your board!!!! Honestly my heart was pounding a mile a minute.
• “You don’t like the weather in Hawaii? Wait 10 minutes!”
• Teen aged Kono worrying about her mom making this exact same trip. I must say I don’t know one other 40 year old actress on TV today who can pass for a teenager like Grace can.
• Oh my God….how heartbreaking for Kono and her father when Nani suffered that aneurism. Grace really knocked the ball out of the park here. The look on her face was pure devastation for the mother the aneurism took away from her but also for the dream that would never be fulfilled.
• I just adored Chin through this entire episode. His worry from the first moment he saw the clouds building on day one of Kono’s trip to the moment Kono finally reached him. Steve is absolutely right…Chin IS a fantastic cousin.
• And Steve? Well, he did his best to try to reassure Chin that Kono was fine. She wasn’t supposed to call in every day, she was conserving the SAT phone battery. But the look on his face when he too looked out at the darkening skyline showed he was just as worried as Chin was. He was a supportive friend to Chin every step of the way and he didn’t hesitate a milli-second to set things in motion to locate Kono, even going so far as to volunteer to fly the rescue chopper in the storm when the Coast Guard said it was too dangerous to fly.
• I was really sad to see there was very little Danny in this episode again. I really thought since it’s the third episode from the end of the season he’d been in it a lot more and I was really happy to see him right there at the beginning on the beach. “Great” I thought. “Danny is in this one!” But then…no. I’m getting used to it, of course, but I still don’t like it. Since Gracie was with Danny on the beach to see Kono off and everyone was in their “weekend” clothes I assume Five-0 caught their case on a Saturday. If so, Danny was probably with Grace. That’s fine, perfectly understandable, but I wish they would have said that. Just a throwaway line to establish his whereabouts so it doesn’t look like he just simply isn’t there. And it was so obvious during the scene in the Coast Guard HQ that Danny’s appearance and one line were simply inserted in and he wasn’t even really there with the others. The only time you actually see him on screen with Steve and Chin, it’s not even Scott in the shot, only the back of his stand-in’s head. It reminded me of that episode in season 4 when Billy died and everyone was at the wake in that bar. All of a sudden, Danny just appeared for a brief moment, all by himself way in the back. It was so easy to tell it was just an insert. You’d think with all the time Scott has been off screen this season they’d have gotten better at making these things less obvious.
• Having said that, I was thrilled Danny was in one of the choppers with everyone else out looking for Kono. His reaction when he spotted the debris and had to radio Chin that he didn’t see Kono was heartbreaking. For a moment, he really thought they had lost her.
• Every flashback moment between Kono and Nani was pure heaven. The love Nani had for Kono and the joy she took in teaching her everything she knew about Hawaii and her traditions and beliefs was a beautiful thing to watch. Nani taught her daughter everything from all wondrous stories of Hawaii and her people to how to surf, catch fish with nothing but an orange and the most important thing of all, how to use the stars to guide you home.
• I have to say here that not only did Grace Park knock it completely out of the park on this episode but Catherine Haena Kim as Nani and Miya Cech as little Kono were outstanding. Not only are all three of these ladies absolutely gorgeous they gave off a sense of familial closeness that make it totally believable they were mother and daughter. Brava ladies…..job extremely well done!
• I loved how they showed all those Hawaiian proverbs on screen between scenes. It made everything Nani was teaching Kono feel even more personal. Mahalo Lisa (@alohaspaceman on Twitter) for putting together this fantastic graphic of each quote and proverb.
• I was actually a bit frightened when Kono began to hallucinate; seeing Nani there with her and when she finally let her feelings of frustration, anger and fear take over. It scared me to think Kono was starting to lose her grip. Not that she didn’t have every reason to, of course. It was heartbreaking to hear Kono calling out to Nani to wait….that she was right behind her. But Kono wasn’t losing her grip at all. At the moment when all seemed to be lost, Kono’s mind simply went to a place where she knew there was help, the guiding hand of Nani to take care of her, to lead her in the right direction, showing her the way home…just like she had always done.
• That’s going to peel. Shouldn’t she have some horrible tan lines when she wears that strapless wedding gown next week??
• At first I was a bit disappointed when the Coast Guard told Steve he couldn’t fly that he didn’t immediately go to Kamekona for his chopper. But the way it turned out was so much more satisfying. Even once choppers were dispatched to look for her, with the entire team on the lookout for her outrigger, it was Kono who managed to save herself. Kono is no damsel in distress who needs to be rescued by the boys and their fancy toys. She is rock solid and by using her strong will to survive as well as all the knowledge Nani shared with her, Kono was able to get herself to shore and to safety. She is simply magnificent.
• And it seems that Steve and Danny aren’t the only ones who are able to communicate without words. I guess after five years together the original four have come to the point where just a look is enough to make themselves perfectly clear to each other. Oh and a moment to do some much needed fangirling here…… OMG that cap!!! Not only does Steve look (as usual) good enough to eat, just LOOK at how the blue of the cap brings out his eyes! Be still my heart!
• I’m going to assume that I’m not the only one who was a bit disappointed we didn’t have an Ohana reunion at the hospital. But then I thought about it for a second. Kono was heading for island of Molokaʻi so I assume that’s where she ended up. The team were heading up the search out of Oahu. So they all weren’t on the same island. I’m willing to bet there’s a scene on the cutting room floor of the team finally reaching her bedside that there simply wasn’t time for in the episode.
• We may not have gotten out Ohana moment at the end but we did get one last lovely moment with Nani and little Kono. When my daughter was little I used to tell her the worst four-letter-word in the world is “Can’t”. Nani summed it up perfectly for little Kono and it’s those words which helped Kono find her way!
Sorry this review was so late this week. Not only was Saturday a day full of errands and chores that needed to be done, once I was able to finally sit down and work on this my computer decided it was much too nice out to work indoors and decided to take the day off. Thankfully it was well rested when I turned it back on this morning. I hope it was worth waiting for.
One more week and that’s it. The end of Season 5. I guess I’m not in the minority when I say I’m looking forward to it and not looking forward to it at the same time. I just know they have something wonderful for us in the last two episodes of the season. I just hope we all survive it. LOL Have a wonderful week my friends. Aloha!
NOTE: All screen caps above are my own except for the two from @alohaspaceman and @ErynCech as noted above. Mahalo ladies!