HAWAII FIVE-0 3.11 ‘Kahu’ (‘Guardian’)

Episode Title: "Kahu ("Guardian")

Writer: Noah Nelson

Director: Bryan Spicer

Previously on "Hawaii Five-0"

Episode 3.10 "Huaka'i Kula" ("Field Trip")


Last week, we saw McGarrett and Danny’s girl scout field trip get foiled by Tom Arnold. So what’s to make our fearless 5-0 leader so sure he won’t get car-jacked while wooing his girlfriend at a Polynesian drive-thru?

"Eating breakfast out of a box in a car," as she described it, isn’t Catherine’s (Michelle Borth) idea of a romantic send-off as her shore leave comes to an end. But the mood was made even worse when a scary looking lolo shoved a gun through the driver’s side window. Of course, McGarrett (Alex O'Loughlin) had the thug in custody before the opening credits. Too bad he had to rip out the dude’s nose ring.

"Hawaii Five-0" definitely has a sense of humor and McGarrett continuing to argue with Catherine about their date in the middle of a car-jacking was just one of several funny moments sprinkled throughout this episode. As McGarrett arrested a thug while downing a Polynesian breakfast burrito, Danny (Scott Caan) helped Kamekona (Taylor Wily) score a deal on a chopper from a shady helicopter salesman known as "Fast Freddy." Later we had Danny calling out Max (Masi Oka) on his "asocial behavior" and "long-winded explanations." And then there was George Takei as Chin’s uncle, "H5-0's" version off a backwoods moonshiner. Oh and let’s not forget Chin’s unfortunate pig juice mishap.

With all that funny, it’s hard to believe there was also a pretty intense investigation going on involving a boy and his missing father. But this wasn’t just any boy, as young Ethan Awana demonstrated the kind of street smarts and tenacity McGarrett is known for, which Catherine was quick to point out.

When 5-0 began to suspect Ethan’s father in the murder of a bootlegger, Mini-McG insisted his dad was innocent. And while he may have been a major pain in the ass, picking locks, breaking windows and pulling fire alarms, the kid was right. After grilling one of Ethan’s father’s associates, the team learned he was running errands for a local recluse, only poor dad had no idea the man was responsible for a major bank heist in Chicago.

Action-wise, it was Catherine’s turn to pull off some crazy flying scissors kicks and apply elbows to vital organs. Her fight scene with the big bad in this episode was a little over the top (see: flying scissor kick) but this is "Hawaii Five-0" after all. Too bad she’ll be shipping out in a couple of days.

In the guest star department, George Takei returned to the show he first appeared on way back in 1975, in a completely new role as Chin’s "other" uncle. His skeptical refusal to shake Danny’s hand was funny stuff as was his reaction to the boys' refusal to drink his potent moonshine. Uncle Choi needs to appear at least once per season, if not promoted to series regular.

Another notable appearance in this episode was Ethan’s copy of "R.I.P.D," "Hawaii Five-0" producer, Peter M. Lenkov’s comic, the movie adaptation of which will be released next summer. If "Hawaii Five-0" wants you to take anything away from this episode it’s to see this movie and use Bing to "Google" it. And that George Takei is awesome.

Product placement aside, "Kahu" was a great hour of "5-0," packed with a solid mystery, a great guest star and plenty of humor. Thought it was technically a Christmas episode, what with Kamekona dressed up as Santa and a song about "Christmas in the Rainbow State" closing out the show, "Kahu" didn’t hit us over the head with holiday sentiment, which I can appreciate. However, it didn’t hold back on any of the usual "5-0" fun, making this episode a strong finisher as the show heads into the mid-season break.