Characters: Hawaii Five-0
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Five- 0 Task Force
Lieutenant Commander Steve McGarrett
"No, it’s not fifty, it’s five-0. It’s what my dad used to call our family, because we weren’t native Hawaiian. Five-0. I don’t know; it was his way of making us feel like we belonged somewhere I guess."
A former Navy SEAL with intelligence experience, current Navy reservist, and leader of the Five-0 Task Force.
- Aloof Big Brother: To Mary at first, but he’s getting better.
- Badass: He's a retired Navy SEAL, so this is pretty much a given.
- Berserk Button: Do not hurt, threaten, or breathe wrong near McGarrett's family and friends. Children who lose a parent also seem to be a trigger for him ("He Kane Hewa' Ole").
- Big Screwed-Up Family: Thanks to the events of the 100th episode, Steve is very much a part of one.
- Blood Knight
- Bond One-Liner
- Cain and Abel: A stepbrother example. Steve McGarrett is the Abel to Big Bad Wo Fat's Cain.
- Cloud Cuckoo Lander: His idea of a "special date" is eating plate lunch in a truck (at Rainbow). At least there's "romantic music" (80s Hair Bands). He also has occasional cravings for MREs.
- His lesson in survival skills to a group of ten year-old Aloha Girls includes teaching them military tactics ("We're going to talk about the kill zone now...") and how to throw knives.
Steve: (super happy grin) Who wants to learn how to do that?
- Control Freak: Steve likes to be in control of any situation he's involved in. This includes drug busts, shootouts with the Yakuza, driving Danny's Camaro, and manning the barbeque at a backyard picnic. It's lampshaded on several occasions by Danny, Kono, and even Chin.
- Cowboy Cop: Treats criminals as enemies to be defeated as if it were a war, and thus frequently ignores police procedure in favor of more expedient tactics.
Danny: Let's just try not to get the new girl blown up, kidnapped, or shot on her first day. That's all. Can we do that, Steven?
Steve: I can't guarantee that.
- Crazy-Prepared: Not many cops have grenades in the car, especially if it's not their own. He always has several knives and guns on his person, and it's not unusual for Steve to hide other not-so-legal weapons in strange parts of the Camaro as well.
- Daddy Had a Good Reason for Abandoning You
- Dead Guy Junior: Named for his grandfather who died in the bombing of Pearl Harbor.
- Deadpan Snarker: Which makes for a lot of snarktastic conversations between him and Snark Master Danny.
- Drives Like Crazy: No matter what he's driving. And it doesn't help that at least 90% of the time Steve is the one driving Danny's Camaro. The latter never fails to complain about said driving skills or riding shotgun, either.
- Emotional Bruiser: Despite being a total Badass, Steve does not even try to hide his affection and protectiveness towards those close to him. The Man Hug of relief is a common reaction on his part to friends surviving deadly danger and he's always doting and affectionate with Danny's daughter, Gracie.
- Four-Temperament Ensemble: Choleric.
- A Friend in Need: Will do pretty much anything to help his friends, which occasionally leads to him becoming this trope in the process.
- The Hero/The Big Guy
- Honorary Uncle: To Danny's daughter, Grace.
- It's Personal: With cases involving his father or his friends.
- Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique
- Knight Templar Big Brother: To Mary.
- MacGyvering: Or, as Danny calls it, "Steve The Science Guy".
- Made of Iron: Somewhat justified due to his background as a Navy SEAL, who are infamous for taking an insane amount of damage and just walking away from it. Steve takes a lot of physical and mental abuse, being tortured on numerous occasions, witnessing the murder of several friends and family members, and taking hits for his teammates whenever possible.
- Magnetic Hero: By the Season 2 premiere, all the original members of Five-0 have clearly indicated their first loyalty is to McGarrett. Even Kamekona is willing to enact a Bolivian Army Ending if Steve gives him the word.
- Military Maverick: Is not any better at following rules when doing military duty than he is as a cop.
- Mistaken for Gay: With Danny, at least once.
- Mr. Fanservice: Steve has a bad (or good) habit of taking his shirt off whenever the opportunity presents itself.
- Odd Couple: With Danny.
- That One Case: For McGarrett, it's the Story Arc concerning the contents of the Champ box and his father's relationship with the Yakuza and Wo Fat.
- One-Man Army
- Papa Wolf: Steve easily rivals Danny in protective instincts when it comes to Gracie. When they discover provocative pictures of young girl that were taken by her so-called second father-figure, Steve agrees with Danny that he'd kill anyone who tried something similar with Grace.
Danny: I do not think these were taken by a second father... If I found somebody taking pictures of Grace like this, I'd go to their house and I'd kill them.
Steve: Yeah... me, too.
- Trauma Conga Line: Pretty much his life from the first episode on. His father is murdered while he's on the phone with him, he learns 20 years later that his mother was also murdered, discovers the real reason his father sent him away after his mother died, he's betrayed by a former member of his SEAL team who shoots up his house and tries to kill him, his sister is kidnapped over his continuing of his father's investigation, he's framed for murder by his boss, then discovers that she was Evil All Along and only started 5-0 to keep him occupied, then he gets framed for her murder and sent to prison where he gets shivved by the guy who killed his father, and most recently he was betrayed by a former 5-0 teammate and turned over to Wo Fat who had him beaten and tortured for information he doesn't have. It's been a rough year and half for Steve McGarrett.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: With Danny.
- White Male Lead: He's white, he's male, and he's the lead, though the show itself averts Monochrome Casting.
- You Killed My Father: To Victor Hesse, who Steve very much wants to rip apart. Wo Fat is also on the receiving end of this trope, due to him ordering Hesse to eliminate Steve's father.
- Younger Than They Look: Played for laughs when Steve and Danny show up at a sorority house to question a person of interest. Upon seeing them, one of the sorority girls calls out to another girl and says that her dads are there to pick her up. Steve is very much affronted... by being mistaken for the father of a college student.
Steve: I'm sorry, you think I look old enough to be her father?
Danny: That? That's the part you bumped on?
Detective Sgt. Danny 'Danno' Williams
"Why do you do that? I had my fantasy worked out. You're like a devourer of dreams. You know what I mean. You, like, eat them. You're like a little Pacman in cargo pants."
Formerly of the Newark, New Jersey Police Department, he transferred to Honolulu PD after his ex-wife Rachel took their daughter there. He insists that he hates Hawaii and only tolerates it because it's where his daughter is.
- Action Dad: He's a special task force police officer who loves playing dolls with his young daughter and isn't afraid to rip apart anybody who's stupid enough to cross him and his team.
- Anger Born of Worry: Very prone to this, especially where Steve and Grace are concerned.
- Arbitrary Scepticism/Flat Earth Atheist: Believes in psychics but not ghosts even though he met one in one episode.
- Badass Normal: He may not be a Navy SEAL or Soviet-trained spy or CIA operative, but Danny can hold his own when the chips are down and has even saved One-Man Army Steve's butt a time or five.
- Berserk Button: Don't mess with Danno's friends. And do NOT come between him and his daughter.
- On a lighter note, Played for Laughs, is his issue with the word "classified". Don't use that word on him outside of a case or he will rant your brains out.
- Beware the Nice Ones: Danny's a friendly, outgoing guy who adores his daughter, enjoys hanging out with his friends, and doesn't hesitate to help those in need. But hurt innocents or his friends and family? If that's the case, then he'll gladly strap you to the front of his Camaro with bungee cords and drive through heavy traffic while ignoring all of Steve's complaints about Double Standards in interrogation procedure.
- Cain and Abel: The Abel to little brother Matt's Cain.
- Cowboy Cop/By-the-Book Cop: He tries to be the latter but keeps getting pulled towards the former by McGarrett.
- Deadpan Snarker: Perhaps the biggest one on the whole show. Steve and criminals are his usual targets, but anybody's fair game if they do something to annoy or amuse him.
Danny: I have the number of a therapist that I wanna give you. Walk — up steps — like a human.
- Fair Cop: So long as you don't commit very specific crimes that will send him off the deep end (hurting his friends/family and kidnapping or murdering children), Danny tends to be much more by-the-book than his Blood Knight partner, insisting on proper procedure, Miranda rights, and not dangling suspects off a three-story building.
- First Father Wins: Zigzagged throughout the early seasons due to Danny's custody battles with his ex-wife and her very rich new husband. However, as of the fifth season, Danny has received custody of Grace and an order from the judge to keep her in Hawaii instead of moving to Las Vegas with her mother and stepfather.
- Fish out of Water: New Jersey native Danny doesn't like Hawaii, or as he calls it:
Danno: ...this pineapple-infested hellhole.
- Four-Temperament Ensemble: Melancholic.
- Good Parents: He's an excellent father and does everything he can to spend time with Grace.
- Hair-Trigger Temper: Danny's rants about Hawaii and the insanity of his partner are as common as criminals on the show. Certain things set him off more than others, like kidnapping or hurting children, hiding grenades in his car, kicking in doors without any warning, and eating pineapple pizza.
- Heroes Love Dogs: Danny is a major dog-lover and in "Lapa'au", he's more than willing to adopt the orphaned dog of a dead customs agent. He even forces Steve to ride in the backseat of the Camaro while the dog rides up front with him.
- It turns out that Danny also lost his dog to Rachel in the divorce. When Steve asks happened to it, Danny says he was old and died in the airport quarantine process. Which he claims is just yet another reason why he hates "that miserable island".
- Hollywood Atheist: Discussed in "Ka Iwi Kapu", to the disbelief of Steve. Doesn't really believe in any higher being or spirits, let alone ancient Hawaiian beliefs. Or at least until the end of the episode.
- Joisey: Danny's illustrious home state. Aside from his obvious accent and mannerisms, Danny frequently reminisces about how great and sane New Jersey is compared to Hawaii and loves threatening to return home when Steve or the other islanders get too crazy. He's just bluffing, of course.
- The Lancer/The Smart Guy: To both Steve and the rest of the team. He's a very good detective with over a decade of field experience, which makes Danny much more knowledgeable about proper procedure and national/international laws than his more gung-ho, ex-Navy SEAL partner. Growing up in the mainland U.S. also gives him an outsider's perspective of the islands and how to approach situations that the native Hawaiians aren't familiar with.
- Mistaken for Gay: At least once with Steve.
- Mr. Fanservice: Not nearly as much as Steve, but Danny has his moments.
- The Napoleon: Averted. Danny doesn't attempt to overcompensate for his size and usually doesn't let short jokes get to him. Though he does state at one point that his greatest nightmare is waking up a foot shorter. If this is serious or just a joke is hard to tell considering he is, well, Danny.
- The Nicknamer: He likes to ascribe nicknames to friends and enemies alike. Grace is Monkey, Steve is Aquaman and Superman, Babe, Neanderthal, Super-SEAL, animal etc. and criminals are whatever pop culture insult or character jumps into his mind, just to name a few. Sometimes even victims get this treatment.
- Number Two: To Steve and the Five-0 team as a whole. He's usually right beside or just a few steps behind Steve during any jobs they're working together and whenever Steve's out of commission, Danny is the one to take over as temporary boss.
- Odd Couple: With Steve. They're polar opposite personalities, bicker like an old married couple, and are best friends who always have each other's backs.
- Only Sane Man: He's the team's voice of reason.
- Out of Character: The "What If?" dreams that McGarrett has in "Ina Paha" from Wo Fat's drugs invert a lot of Danno's characteristics in an AU. Ex. He loves Hawaii, and is still married to Rachel.
- Overprotective Dad: To Grace on more than one occasion. As an example, he had a 11-year-old boy investigated by the police because he was flirting with his daughter.
- Overshadowed by Awesome: He's a very competent cop in his own right, but then his partner is an former Navy SEAL.
- Papa Wolf: Moving to the other side of the continent is the least he'll do for Gracie.
- Half of the episode "E Malama" is basically Danny being this. Never endanger the life of his daughter.
Danny: If you ever bring a gun into the same zip code as my daughter again, I will kill you.
- It's subtly played, but Danny is consistently more on edge and prone to violence in cases where children are in danger.
- Pintsized Powerhouse: Danno is only 5'5.
- Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right: Despite being a stickler for proper procedure, Danny's willing to loosen his ever-immaculate tie when the situation calls for it, especially if children or innocent civilians are involved.
- Took a Level in Badass: Danny's competency as a cop is often overshadowed by Steve's extreme amounts of badassery, Chin's disgrace arc, and Kono's Fanservice and Badass. But in "He Kane Hewa'Ole", he is the first one who correctly deduces the culprit's plot. Lampshaded by Steve, who asks, "When did you get smart?"
- Tsundere: For those that ship him with Steve, he can be seen of the Type A variety: very snarky and quick to deny his feelings, but is caring deep down inside.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: With Steve.
Lieutenant Chin Ho Kelly
"Part of doing the job is knowing when you’re not the one to do the job."
A high school classmate of Steve, he starts out as a disgraced former HPD detective, but is reinstated at the end of Season 1.
Officer Kono Kalakaua
"I’ll go find out if the daughter saw anything. I mean, I’m the woman, so you’d probably ask me to do it, anyways."
Chin Ho's cousin, a former professional surfer and current HPD officer.
Played by: Lauren German
A profiler from Homeland Security who was a temporary member of the Hawaii Five-0 task force and served as a "babysitter" for them under the new Hawaiian Governor.
Played By: Larisa Oleynik
A CIA analyst who attempted to hunt down Wo Fat because of his involvement in the killing of her fiancée, a highly respected CIA Agent.
Lieutenant Catherine Rollins
Played By: Michelle Borth
A US Navy intelligence officer, and Steve's girlfriend as of Season 3. She joins up with Five-0 thereafter before she leaves to stay in Afghanistan to help out the family who saved her life while deployed there.
Captain Lou Grover
Played by: Chi McBride
Former SWAT officer of the Chicago Police Department, he gets transferred to the Honolulu Police Department to command its SWAT team. After being forced to leave at the end of the fourth season, he gets recruited to join Five-0.
Governor Pat Jameson
"I can help you find this son of a bitch, with full immunity and means. Your task force will have blanket authority to go after guys like Hesse and get them the Hell off my island. Your rules, my backing, no red tape. I promise you, Commander. What you see is what you get."
The late Governor of Hawaii who established the Five-0 Task Force, giving Lieutenant Commander Steve McGarrett and his team full immunity and means to "clean up the islands".
Lt. Governor Samuel Denning
Richard T. Jones
"Governor Jameson gave you full immunity to basically run roughshod over every single law on the State's books. That's not gonna happen on my watch. You cross the line you answer to me."
The new Governor of Hawaii who took the position after his predecessor, Governor Pat Jameson, was fatally shot at the hands of crime boss, Wo Fat.
- Bald Black Leader Guy: Not entirely bald, though.
- Obstructive Bureaucrat: Lampshaded heavily. He gives the Five-0 team a lot more bureaucratic problems than the original Governor, but this is probably because he's not associating with a whole bunch of criminals on the side.
- Reasonable Authority Figure: Despite not being as lenient or gung-ho as his predecessor, Governor Denning is very capable at his job and assists the Five-0 team whenever he can without legal or political repercussions. Denning's lack of corruption actually makes it a much more effective leader than the Governor before him.
Governor Pat Jameson's liaison to the Five-0 team.
M.E. Max Bergman
"I also make pickles. It’s a good way to reuse specimen jars."
The Chief Medical Examiner who frequently deals with the bodies that the Five-0 team stacks up.
- Adorkable: His general attempts at courting Sabrina are so obviously over-eager that it's endearing (to both the audience and her).
- Ambiguous Disorder: Introduced by the governor with the line "They say he's a savant" and had to fire his piano tuner because he liked to chat and Max found it "emotionally draining". In his off time he investigates cold cases and makes pickles, but doesn't trust phones or watch the news because it's scary.
- Asian and Nerdy
- Beta Couple: Max and Sabrina have very little drama between them. No jealous exes, no disapproving parents, no angry Yakuza...
- Bowties Are Cool: When the cast gets dressed up, Max ends up in a suit with a tie-dyed blue bowtie and matching waistcoat◊. Repeat: tie-dyed. If the bowtie alone isn't enough to make him Adorkable, the color certainly is.
- Bunny-Ears Lawyer
- The Coroner: Well, Medical Examiner.
- Conveniently an Orphan/Missing Mom: Max's real mother, Michiyo Takeshita, left him at St. Martin's orphanage. He was adopted by the Bergmans.
- Happily Adopted: Seems to be on good terms with rest of the Bergmans. Presumably knew he was adopted from an early age, as he's clearly Asian and "Bergman" is a very non-Asian name, though we've never seen his parents on screen to confirm their ethnicity.
- Deadpan Snarker
- Drives Like Crazy
- Informed Judaism: So informed that the only clue we've gotten so far is Masi saying Max is the first Jewish-Japanese guy he's ever played on TV.
- The Medic
- Promotion to Opening Titles
- The Smart Guy
- Trademark Favorite Food: Pancakes.
- Took a Level in Badass
- Wrong Genre Savvy: Max thinks a zombie attack is possible in "Kupouli ʻla". He was wrong, though.
"You get what you paid for, brah. This stuff don't grow on trees."
A confidential informant for the Hawaii Five-0 team and entrepreneur who runs Wailoa Shave Ice, The Shrimp Truck, and helicopter tours around the islands of Hawaii.
Played By: Claire Van Der Boom
The ex-wife of Det. Danny Williams, current wife of Stan Edwards, and mother to Grace Williams and Charles Edwards.
- Good Parents: Aside from the custody issues, Rachel is shown to genuinely love her daughter and encourages a relationship between Danny and Grace once she realizes that he's serious about taking care of his little girl.
- Rich Bitch: Averted. In early episodes where she is The Unseen her off screen actions and Danny's descriptions lead the viewer to believe she is this, but when she's revealed she is quite reasonable and pleasant once she realizes Danny isn't jerking her around. Danny claims she left him because he wasn't wealthy enough, but she indicates to Steve that it had more to do with not being able to handle the stress of having a husband whose job puts him in constant danger.
"Did you catch the bad guys?"
The beloved daughter of Det. Danny Williams and Rachel Edwards, Danny's ex-wife. Grace is frequently seen visiting her father, Uncle Steve
, and the other Five-0 team members.
The wife of Det. Chin Ho Kelly (2010) and a pediatric oncologist employed at Honolulu Hospital.
- Hospital Hottie: She's a very pretty doctor.
- Star-Crossed Lovers: With Chin Ho. Chin broke up with her to protect her when he was kicked off HPD, but Kono thinks Malia was actually abandoning Chin.
Lt. Commander Joe White
Played By: Terry O'Quinn
A retired US Navy SEAL who held the rank of Lieutenant Commander and was once Steve McGarrett's commanding officer (CO) as well as a father-figure. He was friends with John McGarrett, Steve's estranged father, and promised him that he would look after Steve.
Played by: Rummer Willis
A bank teller and Max's
(mostly-offscreen) girlfriend. Accidentally gets shot in a bank robbery, but recovers by the end of the episode.
- Beta Couple: With Max.
- Eternal Love: Discussed. Max says if there's ever a Zombie Apocalypse and he gets bitten, he wants her to kill him before he turns. She responds that she'll just make him bite her so they can "live forever, eat brains, and have zombie babies!"
- Satellite Love Interest: All we know about her life outside dating Max is that she's a bank teller, and we only know that because that's where he asked her out.
- Single Woman Seeks Good Man: Max being Adorkable trying to ask her out is what charms her into giving him her phone number.
"So, you're sayin' like if Amelia Earhart had come to Hawaii to fake her death instead of Howland Island?"
An old friend of Chin Ho (and to Kono) from their high school days. He is also a conspiracy theorist who helps Five-0 check in on certain angles when they hit a dead end.
- Basement-Dweller: Jerry lives in his mother's basement, which is his own little conspiracy headquarters.
- Cassandra Truth: He tells Five-0 that in one of his surveillance jobs, he found that out that criminals had bought up used books in Honolulu for an unknown purpose. Danno and Steve don't seem to believe him until the pre-credits stinger for "Aʻohe Kahi e Peʻe Ai" shows that he was right all along.
- Conspiracy Theorist: What he's known for.
- Crazy Homeless People: He's shown to be this in the 100th episode, "Ina Paha", where he's living on the street and suffers from a debilitating mental disorder.
- Deadpan Snarker: Jerry can keep up with the Five-0 team pretty well in this department, especially after he becomes more comfortable around them.
Jerry: Whoa, Sarah Connor! [to Kono when she pulls a gun on him and his drone] I come in peace.
- Genre Savvy: Those conspiracy theories of Jerry's hold a grain of truth sometimes, and he's quite capable of avoiding the obvious due to this.
- MacGyvering: He's been shown to have a knack for it on several occasions. The best example so far is in Season 5 when Jerry takes over a drone using stuff he bought at the local hardware store. He then proceeded to fly it into the engine of the bad guys' plane to keep them from taking off.
- Properly Paranoid: Part of being a conspiracy theorist that he has security measures to protect himself from trouble.
- Suspiciously Specific Denial: Jerry whips this out whenever he has information for the Five-0 team that's not exactly legal. When he brings some intel on drones to Steve in "Ho'oma'ike", he emphasizes that he's only there for a tour of the palace and that he possesses no connection whatsoever to the information he's about to give them.
Jerry: Any attempt to associate me with the information I am about to share will be vehemently denied by myself and the attorney I will retain. Are we understood?
Honolulu Police Department
Sergeant Duke Lukela
Uniformed HPD patrol officer and recurring character, has a good relationship with the Five-0 task force.
Played By: Mark Dacascos
A drug kingpin and crime boss who terrorizes the Hawaiian islands and serves as a longtime enemy to the Five-0 team. His involvement with numerous criminal enterprises and the murders of John and Doris McGarrett has made him Steve's Arch-Enemy
A Northern Irish terrorist and international arms dealer who is the primary enemy of Steve McGarrett and the Hawaii Five-0 team in the first season.
Played By: Will Yun Lee
A snakehead facilitator originally from China who specializes in human trafficking.