Hawaii Five-0

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Hawaii Five-0
Hawaii five-o.png
GenrePolice procedural
Developed by
Theme music composerMorton Stevens
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons5
No. of episodes110 (List of episodes)
Executive producer(s)
  • Peter M. Lenkov
  • Alex Kurtzman
  • Roberto Orci
Location(s)Honolulu, Hawaii
Running time42 minutes
Production company(s)K/O Paper Products
CBS Productions (2010–12)
CBS Television Studios (2012–)
101st Street Television
DistributorCBS Television Distribution
Original channelCBS
Picture format1080i (16:9 HDTV)
Original runSeptember 20, 2010 (2010-09-20) – present
Related showsHawaii Five-O
External links
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This article is about the 2010 remake. For the original TV series, see Hawaii Five-O.
Hawaii Five-0
Hawaii five-o.png
GenrePolice procedural
Developed by
Theme music composerMorton Stevens
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons5
No. of episodes110 (List of episodes)
Executive producer(s)
  • Peter M. Lenkov
  • Alex Kurtzman
  • Roberto Orci
Location(s)Honolulu, Hawaii
Running time42 minutes
Production company(s)K/O Paper Products
CBS Productions (2010–12)
CBS Television Studios (2012–)
101st Street Television
DistributorCBS Television Distribution
Original channelCBS
Picture format1080i (16:9 HDTV)
Original runSeptember 20, 2010 (2010-09-20) – present
Related showsHawaii Five-O
External links

Hawaii Five-0 is an American police procedural drama television series and a remake of the original 1968–80 television series. The series is produced by K/O Paper Products and 101st Street Television in association with CBS Productions, originally an in-name-only unit of but folded into CBS Television Studios, which has produced the series since the beginning of season three. The title of the new show uses a zero instead of the letter "O" in the original title.[1]

Hawaii Five-0 debuted on CBS, the same network that aired the original version. Like the original version, it follows an elite state police unit/task force set up to fight crime in the state of Hawaii. It premiered on Monday, September 20, 2010, 42 years to the day from the premiere of the original show. On October 21, 2010, CBS announced Hawaii Five-0 had been given a full season order of 24 episodes.[2]

On March 13, 2014, CBS renewed the series for a fifth season.[3]


The series covers the actions of a small special state task force created by the Governor of Hawaii, Gov. Pat Jameson, to investigate serious crimes throughout the Islands, as Hawaii does not have a conventional state police force. The team is headed by Lieutenant Commander Steve McGarrett, USNR as it investigates crimes ranging from terrorism to kidnapping. McGarrett chooses as his partner Honolulu PD Detective Danny "Danno" Williams. He fills out the team by selecting Chin Ho Kelly, and Chin's cousin, a rookie HPD cop named Kono Kalakaua. The task force does not follow the normal chain of command and instead reports directly to the Governor's office. One unexplained part of the story concerns the name "Five-0". Taken from a shirt worn by the young Steve McGarrett in a video that the team watches, Kono decides that "Five-0" would be a good name for their task force. It is not explained how everyone (including tourists) seems to know what Five-0 is, despite it being an unofficial name coined in a private meeting,[4][5] although the name appears to have been made official in later episodes. Five-0's headquarters are located in Aliiolani Hale, site of a famous Kamehameha Statue, which features prominently in the series; in real life Aliiolani Hale serves as the central headquarters of the Hawaii State Judiciary and where the Supreme Court of Hawaii regularly convenes.

Each episode typically begins with a crime being committed or a body being discovered, and assignment of the subsequent criminal investigation to the unit by either the governor or their representative. The task force uses the authority of the governor's office to gain access to crime scenes and investigations involving the Honolulu Police Department (HPD) when they cross paths. To assist them in their investigations, the team is granted immunity from prosecution for actions committed in the line of duty, although this immunity is revoked by the lieutenant governor following the governor's assassination.

A major character arc set up in the pilot episode revolves around the murder of McGarrett's father, who was working on a corruption case even after retiring from the HPD. After the terrorist responsible for his father's murder is apprehended, a mysterious figure interrogates him about Steve's investigation into his father's old cases. This figure is later revealed to be Wo Fat, a criminal with ties to the Japanese Yakuza, and is possibly connected to the suspected car-bomb murder of Steve's mother (a death originally ruled an accident). When his father investigated this as the head of the HPD Organized Crime Task Force, he began to dig too far into the corruption, and was forced to abandon the investigation. He nonetheless saved all his evidence in a toolbox, all of which was left to his son in the hope that he would someday conclude his father's work.

Another character arc involves the reasons behind Chin Ho's departure from the Honolulu Police Department (HPD) after being accused of stealing cash from the HPD asset forfeiture locker. McGarrett accepts Chin Ho onto the task force, as he was his father's protégé. As the series progresses, it is revealed that a mole within HPD framed Chin Ho for the theft, and that this mole could have been connected to McGarrett Sr.'s old corruption probe.

In the season one finale, the Five-0 task force is disbanded after McGarrett is arrested for Governor Jameson's murder. In the second season, the new governor, Sam Denning, reinstates the task force after McGarrett is proven innocent; but the team no longer has absolute immunity and must follow the Governor's rules. Governor Denning appoints Lori Weston from the Department of Homeland Security to the Five-0 task force in episode 2 to monitor the team; she resigns after the task force is involved in a diplomatic incident at the Russian consulate.

In season two, Masi Oka's Dr. Max Bergman, M.E. works, more closely than usual, with Five-0 on a case involving a serial murderer who has begun killing again; Max's biological mother was a victim of the killer during his original killing spree. There was a cooling of relations between Danny and his ex-wife Rachel, and by the end of the season Danny was about to fight Rachel and her current husband Stan's plan to take Danny's daughter Grace with them on their move to the mainland. Kono is involved in an undercover assignment, for five episodes, where she appeared to have lost her badge, but was actually working undercover with HPD Internal Affairs Capt. Vincent Fryer, who was investigating a group of former cops engaged in illegal activities. Chin Ho and his former fiancée reunite and marry, with the Five-0 task force and Kamekona as members of their wedding party.

McGarrett continues to try to learn more about the death of his father and the mysterious Shelburne. His former SEAL Commander, Joe White (who was also a friend of McGarrett's father), arrives in the islands and appears to be helping McGarrett at times and getting in his way at others. Wo Fat returns and is involved in a series of murders, including the leader of the Yakuza, Hiro Noshimuri, and is being hunted down by them.

While Steve is in Japan, searching for Shelburne and Joe White, the Hawaii Five-0 team under Danny's control later form a temporary partnership with the NCIS: Los Angeles team to stop a possible smallpox outbreak which begins in the Hawaii Five-0 Season 2 episode, "Pa Make Loa" and later concludes in the NCIS: Los Angeles Season 3 episode, "Touch of Death".

At the end of the season, Joe takes McGarrett to see Shelburne in Japan; Shelburne turns out to be his mother, who was presumed dead for 20 years which leaves Steve stunned.

Cast and characters[edit]

Main article: List of Hawaii Five-0 characters

Main cast[edit]

NamePortrayed byPositionAssignmentSeasons
Steven J. "Steve" McGarrettAlex O'LoughlinLieutenant Commander, USNRFive-0 Task ForceMain
Daniel "Danny" (or "Danno") WilliamsScott CaanDetective Sergeant, HPDFive-0 Task ForceMain
Chin Ho KellyDaniel Dae KimDetective Lieutenant, HPDFive-0 Task ForceMain
Kona "Kono" KalakauaGrace ParkOfficer, HPDFive-0 Task ForceMain
Dr. Max BergmanMasi OkaChief Medical ExaminerCity of HonoluluRecurringMain
Lori WestonLauren GermanSpecial Agent, DHSFive-0 Task ForceAlso Starring
Catherine "Cath/Cat" RollinsMichelle BorthLieutenant, USN (former)Five-0 Task ForceRecurringMain
Lou GroverChi McBrideCaptain/SWAT Commander, HPD (former)Five-0 Task ForceAlso StarringMain
Jerry OrtegaJorge GarciaConspiracy TheoristFive-0 Task ForceRecurringMain
Cast of Hawaii Five-0, Season 2. From left to right: Grace Park, Daniel Dae Kim, Alex O'Loughlin, Scott Caan, and Lauren German.

Recurring cast[edit]


SeasonEpisodesOriginally airedNielsen ratings
First airedLast airedRankViewers
(in millions)
124September 20, 2010 (2010-09-20)May 16, 2011 (2011-05-16)22[8]11.96[8]
223September 19, 2011 (2011-09-19)May 14, 2012 (2012-05-14)26[9]11.83[9]
324September 24, 2012 (2012-09-24)May 20, 2013 (2013-05-20)35[10]10.36[10]
422September 27, 2013 (2013-09-27)May 9, 2014 (2014-05-09)21[11]11.66[11]
525[12]September 26, 2014 (2014-09-26)TBATBATBA



The idea to bring Hawaii Five-O back to television had been under consideration well before the 2010 version was announced. The first attempt was a one-hour pilot for a new series that was made in 1996 but never aired, although a few clips were found years later and are available online. Produced and written by Stephen J. Cannell, it was intended to star Gary Busey and Russell Wong as the new Five-0 team. Original cast member James MacArthur briefly returned as Dan Williams, this time as governor of Hawaii, with cameos made by other former Five-O regulars. Another attempt was made to turn the project into a film by Warner Bros. but that also was scrapped.[13]

On August 12, 2008, CBS announced that it would bring Hawaii Five-O back to the network schedule for the 2009–2010 television season. The new version would be an updated present-day sequel, this time centering around Steve McGarrett, who succeeds his late father Steve (Jack Lord's character in the original series) as the head of the unit. Edward Allen Bernero, executive producer and showrunner of Criminal Minds, was to helm the new take, which he described as "Hawaii Five-O, version 2.0". It was also to incorporate most of the iconic elements from the original, including the "Book 'em, Danno" catchphrase, into the remake. Bernero, who was a fan of the original, and had a ring tone of the series' theme song on his cell phone, had always wanted to bring the series back to TV.[14] This version did not go beyond the script stage.

In October 2009, it was announced that Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci had signed on to script a pilot episode, and that Peter M. Lenkov would serve as the series showrunner.[15] Kurtzman and Orci decided to reboot the original concept similar to their work on the 2009 Star Trek film, rather than a sequel to the original series. Production on the pilot was shot in and around Honolulu from February to April 2010.

On May 17, 2010, the Hawaii Five-O remake was picked up by CBS, which scheduled it for Monday nights in the 10–11 pm timeslot.[16][17] The news was good for the state of Hawaii, which hopes that the remake will pump new life into the economy. Production of the remainder of the first season started in June 2010.[18][19] On June 24, 2010, the producers announced that it will use the warehouse at the former Honolulu Advertiser building as the official soundstage studio for the series starting in July 2010.[20] Exteriors representing Five-0 headquarters in the series are located at the Judiciary History Center of the Supreme Court Building in Honolulu, directly across the street from Iolani Palace, which represented Five-O headquarters in the original series.

This revival series uses a zero as the last character in its title instead of the letter "O" that is used in the title of the original series. According to The Los Angeles Times, a CBS insider said that the disambiguation was necessary because of search engine results.[21] When Variety conducted its own search engine test on Google, it found that "Hawaii Five-0" (with the zero) had 263,000 results while "Hawaii Five-O" (with the letter O) had over 1.7 million.[22]

On August 18, 2011, CBS announced that Hawaii Five-0 would cross over with NCIS: Los Angeles by having Daniela Ruah guest star as Kensi Blye from the latter series.[23] The crossover aired on October 24, 2011, in episode 6 of season 2. A two-part crossover was aired on the April 30, 2012 episode of Hawaii Five-0 and the May 1, 2012 episode of NCIS: Los Angeles, with two characters from each show visiting the other (Callen and Hanna from NCIS: Los Angeles and Danny and Chin Ho from Five-0).

Online voting by viewers determined the ending of the January 14, 2013 episode "Kapu" ("Forbidden"), with two zones, Eastern and Central Time Zones, and Mountain and Pacific Time Zones, each getting their own result. Each alternative ending could be seen online after the episode aired.[24][25]


In February 2010, it was announced that Daniel Dae Kim had been cast to play Chin Ho Kelly, an ex-cop trained by Steve McGarrett's father. He was the first actor cast for the remake.[26] Several days later, Alex O'Loughlin was cast as Steve McGarrett,[27] the son of ex-cop John McGarrett (portrayed by William Sadler). The producers pay homage to the original series throughout the first year, by making one of Steve's hobbies restoring his father's 1974 Mercury Marquis, which is in fact the actual car driven by Jack Lord in the latter half of the original series' run.[28] Actress Grace Park was later cast as rookie detective Kona "Kono" Kalakaua,[29] and Scott Caan was cast as Danny "Danno" Williams. In the recurring cast are Jean Smart as Governor Pat Jameson and Masi Oka as the medical examiner Max Bergman. Oka was upgraded to series regular for the second season.[30]

Of note, several recurring roles have been filled by surviving members of the original cast. Al Harrington, who played Det. Ben Kokua in the original series, now plays a friend of McGarrett's, Mamo Kahike.[31] Dennis Chun, who had various guest roles in the original series and is the son of Kam Fong Chun (the actor that portrayed the original Chin Ho), has a recurring role as HPD Sgt. Duke Lukela in the remake.[32] James MacArthur, the last surviving main cast member from the original series, agreed to guest star in a first season episode; however, he died on October 28, 2010, before filming his appearance.[33]

Larisa Oleynik was cast as Jessica Kaye[34] (changed to Jenna Kaye in the episode broadcast),[35] scheduled to join the Five-0 task force in the show's 19th episode.[36] Oleynik appeared on a recurring basis for the remainder of the 2010–11 season, with an option to become a regular in season 2;[37] however, her character was killed off in season 2, episode 10. It was also announced that Terry O'Quinn would be joining the cast of the show in season two,[38] along with Lauren German, who would play Lori Weston, a former Homeland Security (and FBI agent) official assigned by the new governor to keep an eye on the team.[39]

For season three, Christine Lahti has been cast in a recurring role as Doris McGarrett, the thought-to-be-deceased mother of Steve McGarrett.[40] Also, Michelle Borth who plays Lt. Catherine Rollins became a main cast member for season 3.

After appearing as a guest star in several season four episodes, Jorge Garcia who plays the character of Jerry Ortega (a conspiracy theorist and high school classmate of Chin's) was promoted to series regular commencing season five.[41]


Hawaii Five-0 uses the original show theme song composed by Morton Stevens. Critics received an early copy of the pilot with a synthesizer and guitar-based version of the theme. After negative reaction to the reworked song spread quickly online, Kurtzman said he and others realized that changing the music was a mistake, and arranged for studio musicians,[42] including three who had worked on the original from 1968,[43] to rerecord the theme "exactly as it was", except shortened to 30 seconds[42] from its original length of about 60 seconds.[44] Original instrumental music is composed by Brian Tyler and Keith Power.[45]


Hawaii Five-0: Original Songs from the Television Series
Soundtrack album by Various
ReleasedOctober 4, 2011
RecordedVarious dates

Hawaii Five-0: Original Songs from the Television Series is a soundtrack album featuring music used in the CBS television series Hawaii Five-0. The first volume in the series received attention for how show producers integrated these new and previously unreleased tracks from major-name artists into the second season episodes. This method contrasted with the norm for TV soundtracks, which tend to be compilations of previously released music that is already available individually or on other albums. Hawaii Five-0: Original Songs from the Television Series was released on October 4, 2011.[46]

1."Hawaii Five-0 Main Title Theme"  Brian Tyler1:47
2."World Upside Down"  Jimmy Cliff3:09
3."Best of Me"  Goo Goo Dolls4:00
4."Out of Control"  Switchfoot4:10
5."Should We Believe"  Train3:46
6."Closer"  Corinne Bailey Rae4:16
7."Don't Ever Take Yourself Away"  Bob Dylan3:30
8."Ukulele Five-0"  Jake Shimabukuro2:44
9."Love That's Bigger"  The Swell Season2:47
10."Pass It On"  Ziggy Marley3:28
11."Hi'ilawe"  John Cruz3:48
12."Book 'Em Danno (Suite From Hawaii Five-0 2010)"  Brian Tyler & Keith Power6:45
Total length:

Featured music[edit]

SongArtistSeasonEpisodeOriginal air date
"Power (Kanye West song)"Kanye WestSeason 1""Lanakila"December 6, 2010
"S&M"RihannaSeason 1"Powa Maka Moana"February 14, 2011
"Turn Around (5, 4, 3, 2, 1)"Flo RidaSeason 1"Powa Maka Moana"February 14, 2011
"The End"Pearl JamSeason 1"Loa Aloha"February 21, 2011
"Coming Home"Diddy – Dirty MoneySeason 1"Hoʻopaʻi"April 18, 2011
"Hit the Lights"Jay Sean ft. Lil WayneSeason 1"Hoʻohuli Naʻau"May 2, 2011
"We'll Be Alright"Travie McCoySeason 1"Hoʻohuli Naʻau"May 2, 2011
"Out of Control"SwitchfootSeason 2"Kameʻe"October 3, 2011
"Well Thought Out Twinkles"Silversun PickupsSeason 2"Kameʻe"October 3, 2011
"Move a Little Faster"Dionne BromfieldSeason 2"Lapaʻau"November 7, 2011
"Lonely Boy"The Black KeysSeason 2"Ike Maka"November 14, 2011
"We Found Love"RihannaSeason 2"Pahele"December 5, 2011
"Drive By"TrainSeason 2"Puʻolo"January 16, 2012
"Everybody Talks"Neon TreesSeason 3"Lana I Ka Moana"October 8, 2012
"What Makes You Beautiful"One DirectionSeason 3"I Ka Wa Mamua"November 12, 2012
"I Cry"Flo RidaSeason 3"Ohuna"November 19, 2012
"Runaway Baby"Bruno MarsSeason 3"Ha'awe Make Loa"December 3, 2012
"King of Hearts"CassieSeason 3"Huakaʻi Kula"December 10, 2012
"Spectrum (Say My Name)"Florence and the MachineSeason 3"Hana I WaʻIa"January 21, 2013
"C'Mon"Keshaseason 3"Kekoa"February 11, 2013
"Wings"Little MixSeason 3"Imi Loko Ka 'Uhane"April 29, 2013
"This Kiss"Carly Rae JepsenSeason 3"Hoʻopio"May 6, 2013
"Come & Get It"Selena GomezSeason 4"Kaʻoia Iʻo Ma Loko"October 11, 2013
"Radioactive"Imagine DragonsSeason 4"Akanahe"November 15, 2013
"Can't Get Enough"Becky G feat. PitbullSeason 4"Akanahe"January 10, 2014
"Do It"Pitbull feat. Mayer HawthorneSeason 4"Pe'epe'e Kanaka"April 25, 2014
"Turn Down for What"DJ Snake feat. Lil JonSeason 5"Ka Hana Malu"November 21, 2014


The series premiered in the U.S. on CBS on September 20, 2010. Canada's Global TV and NTV premiered the show at the same time as the United States premiere.[47] Hawaii Five-0 has been syndicated for broadcast in several countries worldwide, including Australia,[48] the United Kingdom,[49] and South Africa,[50]

Reception and impact[edit]

Critical reception[edit]

The show has received mostly positive reviews. Metacritic gave season 1 of the show a 65 out of 100 aggregate score based on reviews from 22 critics.[2] Rotten Tomatoes gave season 1 a score of 74% based on 23 reviews. The site's consensus calls it: "A brisk, slick reboot of an old favorite, Hawaii Five-0's picturesque locales and attractive cast make for pleasurable viewing."[51]

On May 19, 2010, The Honolulu Advertiser offered an opinion about the new version: "A smart script, slick production values and maybe a splash of nostalgia got the remake of Hawaii Five-O placed on the CBS prime-time lineup this fall, but it will take more than beefcake and a remixed theme song to keep the show on the air." The piece also pointed out that times have changed since the original left the air, citing other shows that were set in Hawaii which have come and gone. It expressed a hope that the producers will succeed in bringing a new life to the title with this remake.[52] The show also has a large, hugely devoted fanbase, often called an "ohana".[citation needed]

Hawaii Five-0 was also in the Guinness World Records 2012 for Highest-Rated New Show in the U.S. with a record 19.34 million viewers for its January 23, 2011 episode (Kai eʻe).[53]


SeasonEpisodesTime slot (ET/PT)Season premiereSeason finaleTV seasonRankViewers
(in millions)
(in millions)
(in millions)
Monday 10:00 PM
September 20, 2010
May 16, 2011
September 19, 2011
May 14, 2012
September 24, 2012
May 20, 2013
Friday 9:00 PM
September 27, 2013
May 9, 2014
September 26, 2014

Awards and nominations[edit]

Series star Scott Caan was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor - Series, Miniseries or Television Film for his role as Danny on Hawaii Five-0. Hawaii Five-0 also won the "Favorite New TV Drama" at the 37th People's Choice Awards on January 5, 2011.

The "Five-0 Effect"[edit]

Hawaii Five-0 made several positive effects on the state's economy since it began airing. Known as the "Five-0 Effect" by Hawaii News Now reporter Steve Uyehara, various Hawaii-based businesses saw an increase in sales after they were featured in episodes of the show. Visitor numbers to the USS Missouri Memorial Association, after being featured in some of the episodes, increased 25 percent, helping the site achieve a record year in 2010. Waiola Shave Ice, the business run by Kamekona on the show, saw a 20 percent increase in shave ice sales, along with a 30 percent rise in t-shirt sales. Kona Brewing Company also saw a 60 percent increase in sales after their beers were featured as McGarrett's favored alcoholic beverage in several episodes. In addition, residents from other states visit Hawaii based on viewing the series.[66]


TNT has acquired the off network rights to air the series. Episodes began airing on the cable channel in August 2013.[67]


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  51. ^ http://www.rottentomatoes.com/tv/hawaii-five-0/s01/
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