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S10.E07: Ka ʻi’o (DNA)


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When the CIA informs McGarrett that his mother has gone rogue on her undercover mission and may have killed her partner, Steve goes solo to Mexico to bring her home and prove her innocence. Christine Lahti returns as Doris McGarrett. Episode written and directed by series star Alex O’Loughlin.

Original Airdate: November 8, 2019

SOURCE: https://cbspressexpress.com/cbs-entertainment/shows/hawaii-five-0/releases/view?id=53833

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On 10/29/2019 at 9:42 AM, fishcakes said:

Ugh, Doris. I was hoping we'd seen the last of her.

Likewise, pleeease, no more Danny's mother and Steve's sister!  But I would love to see more of Rachel and the kids, along with Grover's wife and kids too.  We never see them anymore, sadly. 

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On 10/30/2019 at 11:08 AM, DKay said:

Likewise, pleeease, no more Danny's mother and Steve's sister!  But I would love to see more of Rachel and the kids, along with Grover's wife and kids too.  We never see them anymore, sadly. 

Grover’s wife is listed among the recurring characters who’ll be in the episode following this 1. Chi McBride co-wrote the episode in question; 1 of the plot lines involves Grover being happy that his niece (I think it is), who’s some sorta college athlete, is coming to check out the University of Hawaii to see if she likes it in regards to her athletic & scholastic needs.

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21 hours ago, BW Manilowe said:

Grover’s wife is listed among the recurring characters who’ll be in the episode following this 1. Chi McBride co-wrote the episode in question; 1 of the plot lines involves Grover being happy that his niece (I think it is), who’s some sorta college athlete, is coming to check out the University of Hawaii to see if she likes it in regards to her athletic & scholastic needs.

Cartwheel!!! 😱👏🏼👍🏽👌🏽😊💃🏽

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Steve's first question upon seeing Junior should have been "who is looking after my goddamn dog?!"

They pulled a fast one on us with the intro. When Steve gets ambushed in his room one of them pulls a gun and fires. Second time around there is the same tussling but no gunplay.

There was a very cool shot of what appeared to be bullet holes which transitioned into stars in the sky. I've never seen style like that on this show before.

Have we seen Junior's friends before? At one point, McGarrett says "wait a minute..." and I was totally expecting the next line to be "who the fuck are you guys?"

Colombia, Panama and Mexico look incredibly similar to Hawaii with an Instagram filter applied.

The hauntingly beautiful song in this episode is called Gortoz a Ran. I don't remember it from Blackhawk Down. It has apparently been used in South Park as well.

The CIA was kind of clever in this one to the point of it almost being a lampshade hanging. Steve is accountable to no one (because 5-0's means and immunity has been repeatedly shown to be effective well outside of Hawaii) and if he dies on the mission, bonus for the CIA.

As far as I am concerned, Steve is entirely responsible for his mother's death since she was still on her mission and she tried to warn him off. "She's gone crazy!" Just like you, Steve? Because you've done shit like this lots of times.

I have never been super fond of McGarrett's mom so I wasn't sad to see her go but Danny almost brought a tear to my eye showing up at the end.

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Good job by Alex O directing and writing this episode (And starring?  That's a lot of work!).  I really liked the ambush they set up.   I never cared much about Doris one way or the other but once she started lecturing Steve near the end I thought "Yeah she has to die".  It was a good ending but at the same time I'm not sorry to see her go; her story was done whether they just never mentioned her on the show again or gave her the big send off she got.

Steve and Juniors team made me wonder - any way they can logically (plot wise) pull off a H5O/Seal Team cross over?  And on a shallow note what the hell is going on with Scott Caan's hair?!?

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3 hours ago, sigmaforce86 said:

And on a shallow note what the hell is going on with Scott Caan's hair?!?

WTF?

On 10/29/2019 at 7:42 AM, fishcakes said:

Ugh, Doris. I was hoping we'd seen the last of her.

Guess we have now.

Had Danny accompanied Junior and his friends on the rescue mission, they could have been called "Danny and the Juniors"

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I really liked that Alex was the 1 to write Doris’ demise, if it had to be, instead of 1 of the other, usual staff writers—except maybe for Lenkov—who aren’t as “close” to the characters as Alex is, having been the show’s lead for all 10 seasons. I also like his directing style & think he’s a pretty good writer; if he decides he’s had enough of the acting once the show ends, he’s got either or both of those fields to make a pretty good (I think) living off of, if he wants to pursue either or both & not leave the acting/screenwriting/directing businesses completely behind him (after all, I think he’s said he’s also pretty good at construction, for example—he built a deck off of his bedroom during 1 of the summer hiatuses from filming; there was a pic of it with an interview he did, though I can’t remember where the interview was published—so he could possibly also go into construction work after the show ends, if he likes).

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Me thinks it could be the last season of Hawaii Five 0 if Alex wants to move on, he goes the show does too.

Hate that Doris was killed but at least it was Alex who made her sacrifice in order to save him and others

Thought the CIA agent at first came off a jerk, in the end, he was decent in the end

Junior acting like a Seal and it could had been for the time that he wanted to pay back Steve over rescuing Joe White

But in the end, he tried to save Doris but deep down me thinks she had no way out to save him or others. Wished he could had brought her home with him. He has lost enough already

Have had a love-hate relationship as you all know with Steve. But really making me love him more and Danny coming on into helping him cope. That is a true friend. Danny may be whiny but he is a true friend and Steve does have family even if Doris was not always trustworthy, estranged from his father, and has Mary not too bright.

Best episode of the season and of all time for Five 0. 10/10!

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My first thought was I remember the day when the entire team would have told Steve that no matter what, we ARE going with you...We are a team...", back in the day of Chin & Kono snd Lou.  I hate how some things have changed in the writing. Not sad Doris is gone. Now if we could ensure Steve's sister doesn't show up in future epi's. It made me sad when Steve said to Danny that he list his dad, then Joe last year, and now his mom. I started hoping they'd start him going out with the vet or something upbeat.  

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On 11/9/2019 at 2:49 AM, dwmarch said:

They pulled a fast one on us with the intro. When Steve gets ambushed in his room one of them pulls a gun and fires. Second time around there is the same tussling but no gunplay.

There was a very cool shot of what appeared to be bullet holes which transitioned into stars in the sky. I've never seen style like that on this show before.

Have we seen Junior's friends before? At one point, McGarrett says "wait a minute..." and I was totally expecting the next line to be "who the fuck are you guys?"

So just to clarify, the opening scene was really when Junior and his SEAL friends came into Steve's room, and he fought them not knowing who they were, right?  Was confused why they would just sneak up on him like that, why not open the door and just announce who you are?  It was so dark and the action so fast that you couldn't really see, but in the second scene it was clearly Junior and the guys.

I noticed that transition to the stars in the sky too.  Seems like something you would see in movies but never really on tv.

I was tired of Doris.  The storyline was always confusing to me.  Is she good?  Is she bad?  Honestly kind of forgot about her after the whole Wo-fat thing.  So she was trying to get a payday to set-up Steve and his sister, and then she was out?  Who was the third McGarrett mentioned that already had $500K in the account?  She really was still true to the agency in the end because she had put trackers in the sub and the drugs?  And was she supposed to be in a romantic relationship with this woman drug dealer, and that's how she got so close to her?

In the end, it was Steve that got his mom killed.  She told him to leave, he was stubborn about it.  What I don't get is why Doris was holding back anything at the end.  Why wouldn't she just reveal the plan?  Why hold a gun to Steve?  Why waste precious time allowing the woman drug dealer to find you?  Just made no sense.  It's either, "Steve this is my plan" or Steve just grabs her and they run out of there.

And didn't it look like woman drug dealer shot Steve in the lower abdomen / groin?  That's where I thought I saw the blood.  But then we saw Steve only in a shoulder sling, so obviously not serious.

So with the death of Doris and the previous death of his father and Joe White...does that mean that all of the mysterious Steve backstory and the toolbox etc. are all gone by the wayside?  I hope so.

And I guess Quinn went on vacation or something?  Or maybe this was filmed pre-Quinn and they just stuck it in now to try to build up to a potential series ending?

Edited by greyhorse
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On 11/9/2019 at 6:39 AM, sigmaforce86 said:

Good job by Alex O directing and writing this episode (And starring?  That's a lot of work!).  I really liked the ambush they set up.   I never cared much about Doris one way or the other but once she started lecturing Steve near the end I thought "Yeah she has to die".  It was a good ending but at the same time I'm not sorry to see her go; her story was done whether they just never mentioned her on the show again or gave her the big send off she got.

Steve and Juniors team made me wonder - any way they can logically (plot wise) pull off a H5O/Seal Team cross over?  And on a shallow note what the hell is going on with Scott Caan's hair?!?

Regarding the bolded:

Small point: In the Navy, this word “Seal” (or this word “seal”) is actually spelled SEAL, in all capital letters. It’s an acronym for where SEAL teams carry their missions out: (on the) SEa (using 2 letters of the acronym here), (in the) Air, (on the) Land.

At best, Scott’s hairline’s receding; at worst, he’s losing his hair. He’s had issues with it since the show started, & you could especially tell it when his hair got wet in a scene. That’s why he wore that pompadour type style. It covered the hair issues fairly well. But they must’ve gotten worse over the hiatus between this season & last, because this season it looks like he’s wearing his hair buzz cut on the sides, but full in the section of hair that goes from the top/middle of his hair down to the back of his neck. I’ve seen other people wear that style. Most guys Of his age just give up & buzz the whole head. I suppose that’s a little too drastic for Scott & for Danny.

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Doris plots just bore me to tears largely because it results in Steve's Manly Manpain taking over the show. Doris was also more of a plot device than an actual character anyway. I also think the show is at its weakest when only featuring one character and not focusing on the team as a whole.

I'll give AOL credit for having the guts to kill off Doris. Though I am by no means buying that she's actually dead.

I also liked that Junior got to do actual SEAL things. I think the show forgets he's actually competent in the field.

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4 hours ago, greyhorse said:

So just to clarify, the opening scene was really when Junior and his SEAL friends came into Steve's room, and he fought them not knowing who they were, right?  Was confused why they would just sneak up on him like that, why not open the door and just announce who you are?  It was so dark and the action so fast that you couldn't really see, but in the second scene it was clearly Junior and the guys.

I noticed that transition to the stars in the sky too.  Seems like something you would see in movies but never really on tv.

I was tired of Doris.  The storyline was always confusing to me.  Is she good?  Is she bad?  Honestly kind of forgot about her after the whole Wo-fat thing.  So she was trying to get a payday to set-up Steve and his sister, and then she was out?  Who was the third McGarrett mentioned that already had $500K in the account?  She really was still true to the agency in the end because she had put trackers in the sub and the drugs?  And was she supposed to be in a romantic relationship with this woman drug dealer, and that's how she got so close to her?

In the end, it was Steve that got his mom killed.  She told him to leave, he was stubborn about it.  What I don't get is why Doris was holding back anything at the end.  Why wouldn't she just reveal the plan?  Why hold a gun to Steve?  Why waste precious time allowing the woman drug dealer to find you?  Just made no sense.  It's either, "Steve this is my plan" or Steve just grabs her and they run out of there.

And didn't it look like woman drug dealer shot Steve in the lower abdomen / groin?  That's where I thought I saw the blood.  But then we saw Steve only in a shoulder sling, so obviously not serious.

So with the death of Doris and the previous death of his father and Joe White...does that mean that all of the mysterious Steve backstory and the toolbox etc. are all gone by the wayside?  I hope so.

And I guess Quinn went on vacation or something?  Or maybe this was filmed pre-Quinn and they just stuck it in now to try to build up to a potential series ending?

As @illdoc said, the 3rd McGarrett who had a bank account set up for them by Doris is Joanie. That’s Mary’s adopted daughter/Steve’s niece/Doris’ granddaughter (whom she obviously knew about, but I don’t think she ever got a chance to meet her since she was always going off on secret missions for the CIA just when you thought she might stick around awhile.

They filmed at least the parts set in Mexico (& maybe South America, but I’m not positive) in LA before they filmed the rest of the episode or the actual 1st episode of the season. I think it was the only way they said they could do it, logistically. Depending on when Alex wrote the episode, Katrina Law (Quinn) might not have been hired yet. And if she had been, it probably would’ve been too hard to have written her in after Alex had already written the script & maybe submitted it to Peter Lenkov & the network for approval & the beginnings of pre-production. I don’t know that it was “stuck in now to try to build up to a potential series ending” either. Alex, at least, may be perfectly happy doing another season after this; especially now that the stem cell & other medical treatments he was doing before Season 10, for all of his accumulated & unrepaired stunt-related injuries from over the series’ length, seem to be working.

Plus, Alex is getting to both write & direct episodes now, & he’s been given a Producer credit this season, in the credits that air after the main title sequence & the 1st commercial break. And considering Alex takes his position as #1 in the cast seriously, by agreeing to do interviews, & by appearing at all of the Sunset on the Beach season premiere events, & by appearing at most of the set blessing ceremonies at the start of each season (I think he’s missed a couple because he was still out of town, or hadn’t quite made it back to Honolulu at the end of a hiatus or 2), I doubt that’s just a “no real clout” position, like when many stars of other long-running TV series receive Producer/Executive Producer credits late in their series’ run—they get the title, & probably something of a salary bump to go with it, but they don’t have as much say about what goes on with their show as you might expect if they have a production-related title. I’m pretty sure Alex does have more of a voice in what happens with the show this season. Having those perks now is more incentive for Alex to stick around.

The original version lasted 12 seasons. I hope they’re trying to arrange things so they run at least that long, even if, say, Scott bails at the end of this season (JUST SPECULATION... I DON’T KNOW IF SCOTT WOULD STAY, OR NOT, IF THE SHOW CONTINUES PAST THIS SEASON!). I think they might be able to make that happen, as opposed to going for a 13th season, to pass the original’s run.

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On 11/9/2019 at 12:49 AM, dwmarch said:

As far as I am concerned, Steve is entirely responsible for his mother's death since she was still on her mission and she tried to warn him off. "She's gone crazy!" Just like you, Steve? Because you've done shit like this lots of times.

Even in this episode. telling JR not to come help him unless he asked.

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3 hours ago, MartyQui said:

Ok, did they just hand wave Steve’s liver transplant away?  If he was lost for eight weeks, was he buying his anti-rejection drugs from black marketeers?  

I've been wondering for the past few seasons what happened to his anti-rejection medication.  I suppose if they were being realistic he might have had the new standard 90 day supply.

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There were many things I loved about this episode:

Junior's steely eyes when he came on in full SEAL mode--first at the computer table, then on the mission.  We've been missing that with his mostly happy-go-lucky chill character.

Danny coming to Steve during his devastation in the quiet grief of the aftermath.  That's a friend.  Steve is alone now.  Yeah, he's got his sister and niece, but he's their support system.  He's lost all of his, between his dad, Joe White, his aunt, now his mom.  Not that she was actual support.  Didn't she choose Wo Fat three, four times over her own son?  I guess he still has Duke and Mamo, but....  He's alone now, but he's got Danny.

I mostly loved that Doris was ambiguous and grey to the end.  Don't get me wrong, I do not like the character (though I love Christine Lahti), but that was a complex end for her.  Yeah, she ultimately stayed on mission, but did she, or didn't she actually kill her partner?  She certainly did establish anonymous secret bank accounts for Steve, Mary Ann, and Joannie, though she only had time to put monies into Joannie's.  The priority there is a nuance worth exploring.  Clearly she intends to fund all the accounts, but she started with Joannie.  Trust issues with her own kids?  Punishment?  Bribery for the kid who barely knows her to think better of her?  Guilt?  Steve is presumably set up financially, but Mary Ann clearly struggles.  I think her death was interesting, and more angst for Steve.

Alex O'Loughlin once again killed it with his grief and pain playing Steve through this.  The fact that he could emote at all through that awful beard deserves awards.  I did not know he wrote and directed this episode. Well done.  It is appropriate that one so close to the McGarrett character write the death of his mom.  I do believe he did a far better job with that than another writer would have because of the intimate and integral relationship he has with all the characters in the show.

One thing I hated about this episode:  Steve's manky beard.  Blech.

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10 hours ago, HurricaneVal said:

One thing I hated about this episode:  Steve's manky beard.  Blech.

That reminds me of an episode of Taken where the special forces types on both sides of the fight were the only people in the town with the beards. They might as well have been wearing a sign saying gunfighter here

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One would assume that niece Joanie will have to give up the 1/2 million as it was not legitimately earned income? Unless Steve turns her over to the IRS and lets them deal with it? The odd part there is why Doris would think her drug lord boss would pay her and then let her split, as that seemed to be Doris' exit plan? Consequently, she would still be looking over her shoulder for the rest of her days. And, what ever happened when she spirited Wo Fat's father away, which I believe was the last time we saw her in the Series? It seemed like he was a rather powerful and likely wealthy man, seems he would have been grateful to be rescued and paid her off.

Another thing that bugged me at the end is the drug lord lady able to restrain Doris with one arm. Doris seemed taller than her, I know they had the one scene at the dock but pretty sure the other woman was taller. So, she was restraining her with one arm (and this is a trained CIA agent who likely could have retaliated, it wasn't like she was wounded) and supporting her weight as Doris' head was below her shoulders. If Doris figured her cover was blown or there was no going back, wouldn't she have tried to save Steve earlier? I realize you need the dialogue to wrap things up, but it is similar to other situations where the long speech/discussion at the end by the villain gives the good guys (Junior in this case) enough time to come to the rescue. I would have preferred for the drug lord to have Doris go sit by Steve, talk to them, then shoot at Steve but have Doris move in and take the bullet, then Junior shows up. That leaves some ambiguity for Steve. Also, Junior didn't mess around, I didn't count the shots he put into the drug lord but it was a lot more than one.

I wonder if the word cache is pronounced like cachet in Australia and that is why it was said that way, and no one on the staff knew any better and that is the way AOL has always said it? That bothered me as well, as mentioned by an earlier commenter here.

While the firefight at the dock was quite intense, I am wondering how the Team got in there ahead of time to plant the charges, as they said earlier that the drug lord and her goons controlled the entire dock? But, hey, it is 5-0 so a few plot holes are to be expected.

Last item, in the hotel room in D.C., I could not tell the brand of beer they had but it didn't appear to be the normal Kona Brewing offerings? I think they purposely hid the label, they probably have a product placement arrangement with Kona Brewing and didn't want to break it.

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41 minutes ago, GustheCat said:

One would assume that niece Joanie will have to give up the 1/2 million as it was not legitimately earned income? Unless Steve turns her over to the IRS and lets them deal with it? The odd part there is why Doris would think her drug lord boss would pay her and then let her split, as that seemed to be Doris' exit plan? Consequently, she would still be looking over her shoulder for the rest of her days. And, what ever happened when she spirited Wo Fat's father away, which I believe was the last time we saw her in the Series? It seemed like he was a rather powerful and likely wealthy man, seems he would have been grateful to be rescued and paid her off.

Another thing that bugged me at the end is the drug lord lady able to restrain Doris with one arm. Doris seemed taller than her, I know they had the one scene at the dock but pretty sure the other woman was taller. So, she was restraining her with one arm (and this is a trained CIA agent who likely could have retaliated, it wasn't like she was wounded) and supporting her weight as Doris' head was below her shoulders. If Doris figured her cover was blown or there was no going back, wouldn't she have tried to save Steve earlier? I realize you need the dialogue to wrap things up, but it is similar to other situations where the long speech/discussion at the end by the villain gives the good guys (Junior in this case) enough time to come to the rescue. I would have preferred for the drug lord to have Doris go sit by Steve, talk to them, then shoot at Steve but have Doris move in and take the bullet, then Junior shows up. That leaves some ambiguity for Steve. Also, Junior didn't mess around, I didn't count the shots he put into the drug lord but it was a lot more than one.

I wonder if the word cache is pronounced like cachet in Australia and that is why it was said that way, and no one on the staff knew any better and that is the way AOL has always said it? That bothered me as well, as mentioned by an earlier commenter here.

While the firefight at the dock was quite intense, I am wondering how the Team got in there ahead of time to plant the charges, as they said earlier that the drug lord and her goons controlled the entire dock? But, hey, it is 5-0 so a few plot holes are to be expected.

Last item, in the hotel room in D.C., I could not tell the brand of beer they had but it didn't appear to be the normal Kona Brewing offerings? I think they purposely hid the label, they probably have a product placement arrangement with Kona Brewing and didn't want to break it.

It looked like it was their usual Kona Brewing Longboards to me; what I saw of the label looked similar. Longboards work because the series—& that part/scene of the ep—was actually filmed in Hawaii. But they also don’t work if Longboards aren’t sold in DC. Where would Steve have bought it (there were a number of apparently used bottles seen before Danny arrived & they drank their 2)? I don’t think he brought it with; not on the mission. Maybe he had Junior ship him some after he got back to Hawaii & Steve was left behind to wrap up whatever &, I guess/hope, take Doris’ body to Hawaii for internment.

Is it bad if I say I kinda hope Catherine was Doris’ partner who got killed (they never did identify the partner)? I just haven’t liked her as much since she started feeling adrift after leaving the Navy & since she started lying to Steve when she apparently joined the CIA, whether Doris got her in or she qualified of her own volition.

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So far as cache being pronounced "cash" or "cash-ay", I have this to add to the conversation:   The first time it happened, I thought it might be an Australian/European thing because it was just AOL as Steve saying it in passing.  But later on, the DEA guy, then the other SEALs said it that way too.  Then I thought back to Mr. HV's earlier career as first a police dispatcher, then as a police officer, where when radioing license plates and vehicle information back and forth, a coupe model (sexy two seater model of whatever variety) was specifically referred to as "coo-pay".  (Arguably the actual correct French pronunciation if one were speaking French.)  This was because radio transmissions could cut in and out with static and squelching, so pronouncing it that way meant it couldn't be mistaken for anything else, and if you only caught part of it, you could fill in the blanks and interpolate what the transmission said.  This is exactly why the military and police etc. use a phonetic alphabet where each letter has a unique word where if you only catch a portion, you could surmise the whole.  The military has the alpha-bravo-charlie-delta etc alphabet, and the police have a different one with adam-boy-charles-david etc. alphabet.  Each letter has a unique sound, so if you only catch part of it in a transmission, you can still identify exactly what was said.

So that's my fanwank for cash-ay.

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I agree that leaving so many questions about Doris to the very end was frustrating I'm sure for Steve and also for viewers.  Why couldn't Doris just tell him the plan when she saw him as she was dropping off money?  Why not a quick "I'm straight, this is what I'm doing"?  For one, Steve doesn't trust her.  But also, it seems like Doris was indeed going along with the drug lord's plan because she wanted to steal some money for the kids' bank accounts?  That's the "one last pay day"?  Was it payment for her services, or was she trying to skim some off the top?  If she truly had good intentions, then why not just tell Steve?  Why hold a gun to Steve and waste time that allowed the drug lord to find you and ultimately kill you?  And where exactly was she and how did she pop up out of nowhere?  Steve was distracted, yes, but it would seem that a trained SEAL would be able to see somebody coming out from the shadows in what appeared to be his right flank.

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The two SEAL members that accompanied Junior were members of Junior's SEAL team back when he was still a SEAL. They appeared in the previous episode where Junior was brought back to active duty for a mission (where Steve went along, of course). So that was a nice bit of continuity, although it's kind of weird to see these guys just go on a black ops mission in the middle of another country. It's like Steve has his own little paramilitary unit answerable to no one. "Oh yeah, these guys are covered by Five-O's ridiculous blanket immunity. That makes sense, right?"

And yeah, it is absurd that Doris didn't just tell Steve her plan. Holding a gun on him? What the fuck? 

"I'll shoot you over my plan to set up your future! That tracks, right?"

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On 11/10/2019 at 2:24 PM, DoctorAtomic said:

Doris plots just bore me to tears largely because it results in Steve's Manly Manpain taking over the show. Doris was also more of a plot device than an actual character anyway. I also think the show is at its weakest when only featuring one character and not focusing on the team as a whole.

Yes.  I hated this episode and had to turn it off because McGarrett was such an asshole.  He was responsible for his Mother's death.  It was his fault.  He was a macho jerk who gave no consideration to the possibility that his mother had her own idea, her own plan, her own will, her own idea.  No, he had to bluster down into Mexico and pull her out without ever thinking that she might have her own fully formed plan, or if she did, he thought she was wrong and and naive and stupid.

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7 hours ago, Brian Cronin said:

It's like Steve has his own little paramilitary unit answerable to no one. "Oh yeah, these guys are covered by Five-O's ridiculous blanket immunity. That makes sense, right?"

The blanket immunity only works for Five-O in Hawaii.  I suppose since it involved the DEA and CIA and they are U.S. operatives they could get a free pass if they have friends in the right places.  It also helps that they took down a drug cartel which will make someone higher up look good.

2 hours ago, susannot said:

He was responsible for his Mother's death.  It was his fault.  He was a macho jerk who gave no consideration to the possibility that his mother had her own idea, her own plan, her own will, her own idea.  No, he had to bluster down into Mexico and pull her out without ever thinking that she might have her own fully formed plan, or if she did, he thought she was wrong and and naive and stupid.

Yeah it didn't sound so great when I rewatched some scenes and heard him tell the men he was convinced that she was unstable.  Then after everything was over he carted her corpse back to D.C. where he was told she stayed on the mission and did her job.  Yes she might have pocketed some money, but she did do her job which he thought she was too unstable to do.  I think the problem is that he always has to play the hero.  That didn't work this time.  On top of that since she was a secret operative under an assumed name that had been dead for many years could she even be buried by her family and even given her real name.  

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Steve's definitely a dick when it comes to his mom, no doubt about it, but at the same time, Doris' death could have easily been avoided by just telling Steve that her plan was "take the bad guy down by the book, but skim some drug money off of the top to set herself and her kids and grandkid up after she retires" instead of just holding a gun on him and lecture him about how tough her life is until the bad person shows up (and ridiculously gets the drop on a skilled CIA operative). 

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I thought the CIA guy told Steve that he (Steve) basically had no choice but to go down and get her.  If she stays, she'll end up dead one way or another, and with another agent confirmed dead, they can't protect her from the impending shitstorm, plus they think she did it anyway.  The CIA was gonna take her out if the cartel didn't.  The only option was for Steve to go down there alone.  It was seriously convoluted, but I thought the gist of it was that Steve HAD to do it, so that's what he did.

Yeah, he basically got her killed, but I was with him as far as going on the mission, even if it was basically suicide and he had no plan.  He didn't think he had a choice.  All he could do was tell the others to stay away because they'd probably end up dead, too, thus the order not to try and find him.

Edited by Orbert
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To be fair, I don't see and end to Doris/Steve any other way. I don't know if AOL was actually writing Steve the way that we are interpreting here (which I think is correct). I do give him credit for actually 1 - having her pull a gun on Steve, and 2 - killing her off; not just her disappearing until they need her to pop up again. 

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I think it all goes back to Steve's trust issues with Doris that go allllll the way back to her faking her death which lead to his dad splitting up the family when Steve was still a teen.  That was the watershed moment of his life, where everything changed.  To find out that it was faked, that Doris was still alive, and that Doris was protecting the guy that was tormenting and literally torturing Steve all this time--and had his dad killed, his sister kidnapped....yeah.  Steve has issues on issues on issues regarding Doris.  And Joe White too, to some extent.  I thought Joe got more of a hero's death than he deserved, he was complicit all those years in the same things Doris was doing.

So when that CIA guy comes to Steve and tells him what he tells him, it is really easy for Steve to assume that Doris is guilty-guilty-guilty and dirty-dirty-dirty.  But also that he is really the only person who has even the slightest chance of extracting her before either the CIA burns her or the cartel kills her.  He was manipulated into thinking he was her only hope.  So he went in to get her, even though he thought she was dirty.  Because she's his mom, even though she hasn't been a mom to him at all.  Even the whole time while he was young and thought they were a happy family, she was pining for Wo Fat, so he's always been second and worst choice to her. 

I don't see how an episode that deals with killing Doris off could be anything but a dark, angsty mess.

I also wonder if AOL wanted to write her death episode to make absolutely, unequivocally, 100% sure Doris was killed dead-dead-dead so he didn't have to figure out how to further twist his face to convey the ever more added Doris baggage Steve carries around.

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9 hours ago, HurricaneVal said:

I think it all goes back to Steve's trust issues with Doris that go allllll the way back to her faking her death which lead to his dad splitting up the family when Steve was still a teen.  That was the watershed moment of his life, where everything changed.  To find out that it was faked, that Doris was still alive, and that Doris was protecting the guy that was tormenting and literally torturing Steve all this time--and had his dad killed, his sister kidnapped....yeah.  Steve has issues on issues on issues regarding Doris.  And Joe White too, to some extent.  I thought Joe got more of a hero's death than he deserved, he was complicit all those years in the same things Doris was doing.

So when that CIA guy comes to Steve and tells him what he tells him, it is really easy for Steve to assume that Doris is guilty-guilty-guilty and dirty-dirty-dirty.  But also that he is really the only person who has even the slightest chance of extracting her before either the CIA burns her or the cartel kills her.  He was manipulated into thinking he was her only hope.  So he went in to get her, even though he thought she was dirty.  Because she's his mom, even though she hasn't been a mom to him at all.  Even the whole time while he was young and thought they were a happy family, she was pining for Wo Fat, so he's always been second and worst choice to her. 

I don't see how an episode that deals with killing Doris off could be anything but a dark, angsty mess.

I also wonder if AOL wanted to write her death episode to make absolutely, unequivocally, 100% sure Doris was killed dead-dead-dead so he didn't have to figure out how to further twist his face to convey the ever more added Doris baggage Steve carries around.

I got the idea that Alex wanted to write the most recent Doris chapter because none of the other writers, including Lenkov (& granted, he oversees 3 different TV shows which film in 2 different places, so his writing time has probably become more limited), had done anything with her in practically forever, in TV terms. So he decided to pick up the storyline, to see what she was up to &, perhaps, to just get it over with & kill her off since nobody apparently knew what to do with her anymore (at least part of the reason for the fact she’s been “in the wind” on CIA missions for so long after the character’s introduction—& I get that Christine Lahti had more roles available to her, & that she wanted to do, which would keep her away from Hawaii on those long stretches).

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I thought it had more to do with Lahti getting a regular gig on Evil, so they knew they'd be ostensibly "losing" her no matter what, so best to get one final appearance out of her before she started filming on Evil in New York (as we've noted before, this episode was filmed before most regular TV seasons started filming, so she would still be available). 

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