To say anticipation builds for every new H50 episode is an obvious understatement. Especially when we’ve had a hiatus from new episodes. Whether it be one week or several, it always elevates the excitement for a new episode. Add to that, knowing there will be only one episode before two more weeks off elevates the enthusiasm even higher.
Thanks to the promo and sneak peaks released by CBS, we could see this episode was going to be full of everything that makes H50 great. Action, intrigue, gun fights, car chases, angst, friendship, even a new villain to hate. All the ingredients were there for this one to be awesome and it did not disappoint.
This episode, centered around the case of the week, a stolen NSA flash drive which puts the lives of multiple NSA operatives at risk, was underscored and heightened by the situations revolving around two members, both current and past, of the Five-0 team. Abby and Catherine. Of course, the big anticipated part of this episode was the big reveal, to Steve at least, about why Catherine left him. But I’ll get to that later. First, I’d like to talk about Abby.
When I saw Abby sitting with the team at Casa McG, I was very apprehensive. Yes, Abby has been showing signs of having second thoughts but here she was, just soaking in more information that she could pass on to her boss. I was so glad to see that my first impression was wrong and, I have to say, they really should consider inviting her to their next poker game because a poker face she has not. She looked decidedly guilty and uncomfortable the whole time they were in the brief. Those second thoughts are definitely still there.
But then something extraordinary happened. Abby had no idea who Robert Coughlin actually was. The look on her face when she learned about his brother Rex and his personal vendetta against Chin was enlightening. Realizing the type of man Rex was, she instantly sees that Robert is no better. Picking up right where his brother left off.
I loved the scene between Abby and Coughlin. I loved how she stood up for the team, telling that creep there was nothing to find. That in all her time embedded with the team she saw none of the wrong doing he’s so sure is there. Of course, he thinks she’s letting her feelings for Chin cloud her judgement and I think he’s absolutely right, thank goodness.
There is no doubt in my mind that when Abby took this assignment she fully believed in what she was doing because she fully bought into Coughlin’s story. She probably felt this bust would be a career maker for her. But the more time she spends with the team, and yes, the more she gets to know and like Chin, the more she can see that what Coughlin is looking for simply isn’t there. So her feelings really aren’t “clouding” her judgement. They are opening her eyes.
“This is a different country then it was when this task force was created. Now, we’re in a civil war. Civilians against anyone with a badge. And men like Steve McGarrett have helped erode the trust between what we do and the people who need us.” OMG…. Is this man serious?? He is seriously putting Steve and Five-0 into that category. It all sounds so very noble but if he honestly believes Steve or any of the others really are that type of cop then… yup… he is definitely delusional.
Finding out that Coughlin has eyes on her as well, essentially spying on the spy, Abby had enough and called him on his bullshit. This investigation has nothing to do with misconduct or anything else legitimate. It is simply a witch hunt, another personal Coughlin vendetta against Five-0.
I really like Abby and I’m so happy it looks like she’s going to come clean to Chin. I just hope the writers have her tell him the truth in the right way so he will understand that when it started, she really did believe she was doing the right thing. Considering we already know Julie is in future episodes it’s easy to assume Chin believes her, at least eventually, and she and Five-0 will be turning the tables on Coughlin very soon.
One note about the scene at Casa McG. Chin and Kono told Abby that Rex Coughlin was “an IA detective who investigated me a few years back” over “cash that went missing from the evidence room”…“which Chin was exonerated for”. But that’s a bit of revisionist history newer viewers wouldn’t necessarily catch. Back in the S1 episode 1.08 (Mana’o – the episode when Danny’s old partner Meka was murdered) we were introduced to the IA officer who investigated Chin and the money stolen from the asset forfeiture locker and he was Internal Affairs Sergeant Cage, not Coughlin.
Like I said, newer viewers probably won’t catch that and I also know there are those who go ballistic over revisionist history. While I’m not a huge fan of it myself, I think this one is really so minor it’s not that big a deal. Also, this little change does finally give us a possible reason for why Rex was so determined to nail Chin for something, pretty much anything, and was so completely over the top in going after him. Because, up until now, none of that made very much sense. By revising that small nugget of information from 6 years ago, we can now see Rex as a man who felt, for almost ten years, that a dirty cop had gotten away on his watch and that was just eating away at him. Doesn’t justify his unrelenting pursuit of Chin in the least, but it does make it a bit more understandable.
This week’s case was a really great one and I loved that the entire team was there to work the case which is always a huge plus for me. Of course, the plot of the crime wasn’t anything new. We’ve seen the trope used for years on TV and a couple of times in Five-0. Beautiful wife/girlfriend/boyfriend convinces his/her partner to do something that’s not above board. Murder his wife, murder her father, or in this case, steal classified intel to “make my country a better place” with no more mass surveillance and spying on American citizens. But of course, our perp this week is not a wife or a real girlfriend but a Russian spy who was able to convince “her love” to help her by making him think she also believed in his misguided ideals.
The moment Steve found out that computer strategist Chris Dalton had downloaded classified Black OPs intel onto the stolen flash drive he immediately went into his Naval Intelligence persona. He knew every operative out there was now in danger and then the bomb we were all waiting for was dropped on his head. Catherine is not in Nepal helping earthquake victims. She’s on a Black OPs assignment in the Ukraine. And while the NSA was able to pull back a majority of the operatives in danger there are a few so deeply embedded they can’t be reached. Catherine is one of them and for the time being, the only thing keeping Catherine safe is the fact that Dalton may be misguided but he’s not an idiot and encrypted the files so no one could open them but him.
Does it surprise me that Steve would immediately go into protective mode when he found out that Catherine was in potential danger? Absolutely not. Was I surprised to hear him say that she is still important to him? Nope… no surprise there either. Steve loved Catherine for a very long time. Yes, he’s hurt and angry and upset by what she did. He may or may not be “in love” with her anymore, but he does still care about her and, of course, will worry about her now that he knows where she is and what she’s doing.
I do wish though that he’d have shown a bit more of the anger he told Danny he’s feeling. I’m not talking about a screaming rage here but he flipped right into his “understanding” mode without ever really voicing his anger at the situation.
But then again. Steve has spent a majority of his life living with secrets and deception. I’ll refrain for the moment from calling them lies because much of it was unavoidable and necessary or at least presumed to be necessary. Doesn’t make it right that Doris faked her death and left her family for twenty years but at the time she felt it was necessary. Catherine’s mission? I’m sure she accepted the assignment because she felt it also was necessary. Steve himself spent years in Naval Intelligence where being covert and secretive was the norm. As a SEAL he would have been deployed on many missions he’d never be able to tell anyone about and would have to deny knowledge of if questioned.
When you live most of your life in that atmosphere it’s easy to understand why someone would do what Catherine did. He may not like it. He may be upset and angered by it, but he understands. That doesn’t mean he’s ok with it. We have seen Steve reach the end of his rope with Doris and pretty much with Joe. He doesn’t trust either one of them as far as he can throw them. I honestly don’t think Catherine acting just like them is the way to remain in Steve’s heart. He may totally understand but that does not mean he has to like it.
None of this bothers me in the least. I fully expected Steve to understand why Catherine did what she did for all the reasons I stated above. I don’t think it makes him look weak nor stupid. Steve is a wonderful, brave, incredible man. Even so, I think things like this make him look like a damaged soul. A brave, true, good soul but one damaged by a life built around secrets. A life where deception feels inevitable and almost like he expects it.Thank God he has his team and especially Danny to have his back. They will never deceive him, they will never abandon him, they will always be his Ohana and be there for him no matter what.
My ultimate wish, of course, is that Catherine continue on with her mission. Since the flash drive intel was recovered and the operatives were not compromised there is no reason for her not to just continue on her merry way, oblivious to the danger she was potentially in. I have made no secret that I do not want her to come back. As of right now, with her mission not compromised I see no reason why she should.
Olga Fonda did a great job as Russian spy Anna Novick. She was relentless and totally bad ass the entire episode. A really great job. And, how the hell was Anna able to gas the entire Aliiolani Hale?? I mean, seriously, they really need to upgrade the security in that place! 😉
I couldn’t stop laughing at Jerry after he woke up from the gas and how he was scared to death he was being abducted by aliens then being disappointed because he wasn’t. I just love that guy! LOL
Best understated take down of the year: “What’s up?” Have I told you lately how much I love that man? LOL
Death of the Camaro? Probably not. After taking more firepower than she has ever had to endure the Camaro sure looked like she gave her life to the cause. And as much as I’d love to see Danny get a brand new Camaro (especially since the new model year is Camaro’s Five-0th anniversary) I have the feeling she will make a miraculous recovery. The guys in the HPD repair and auto body shop must be miracle workers!
Steve returning to his Season 1 form: He may not have had a shark tank or a roof to hang Oleg Larionov, one of Anna’s accomplices, off of but that didn’t stop him from getting the information he needed as quickly as possible. “Danny…grab some earplugs.” “Why?” “Because you’re gonna need them.” “That’s really not an answer.” ROFL. I don’t know what part of that scene I loved more. The return of S1 Steve or the way Danny took it all in stride out in the hall way with the cops on guard. Really great scene.
The musical soundtrack for this show is always spectacular. Many episodes were made even better simply because of the great music written and/or chosen by Keith Powers and Brian Tyler. Watching the team mobilizing for their final take down with Aerosmith’s “Sweet Emotion” playing was incredible! Great choice guys!
Watching Jimmy Borges as Dr. David Yang this week was both joyous and very sad. Long time actor and friend to both the original and current Five-0, Jimmy is making his last appearance on the show. Battling through the last stages of illness, it couldn’t have been an easy task for him. I’m glad he was part of the episode and he was so much fun to watch.
TPTB have always done a fantastic job in honoring those who serve, whether it be military or first responders. We’ve had real life members of both on the show in various episodes. This time, the EMT’s rushing Tommy Luana to the hospital are real Honolulu EMT personnel. Mahalo gentlemen for your service.
Someone else making an appearance in this episode was Jacqueline Cadiente, wife of Stunt Coordinator extraordinaire Jeff Cadiente and a remarkable stunt woman herself. She was one of the OR nurses killed by Anna Novick in the opening scene of the episode. I always love catching a glimpse of Jackie on screen, it’s just too bad she had to end up so damned bloody 😉 . And speaking of Jeff…. damn! What a fantastic shootout. He just keeps making our show better and better every week.
Of course it’s always wonderful to see Max in on the crime scene investigation and, of course, Duke! How can you not love seeing these guys on our screens running down the situation and being awesome doing it! 🙂
And finally…. RIP Brock Little. Enough said!
Well, there you have it. Another awesome episode and a good thing too because it’s going to have to hold us for three weeks (two Friday’s for NCAA basketball). I know… I hate these hiatuses too but they are unavoidable. Just think of all the anticipation it will bring when April 1st finally rolls around!
Have a wonderful week my friends. Aloha. Malama Pono.
All screen caps are mine.