Reviews: Hawaii Five 0


Full disclosure. CBS is probably my least watched network, mostly because of the reactionary tone of its cop shows (many of which fall under the JAG umbrella). I can overlook the fascist strain in some series, like 24 or British copper shows like DCI Banks and Life on Mars. All police shows are guilty pleasures to some degree. We enjoy watching attractive cops in custom-fitted suits busting bad guys, busting balls and standing up to authority. The fact that TV cops tend to alienate anyone who isn't on the squad, be they feds or politicians or even local agencies, is something we overlook in the interest of drama.

5-0 is the most cynical show I've seen in some time. The show switches from torture of suspects, to simpering scenes with smiling babies and heartfelt muzak. The cast is lauded for its chemistry, for some reason, and while they're good actors, chemistry relies on some sort of dynamic. The 5-0 are best buds who klink beer bottles together at the end of each episode. That's all well and good, but nobody on this show is billed for their acting chops, deep canon or personalities. They're eye candy. (Even this is debatable in the case of Scott Caan. I respect that a short-statured gent such as myself is currently considered a sex symbol by many. But Scott Caan and "sex symbol" don't go together. He's Hollywood royalty, and that's all.)

Anyway, there is a lot of clashing between Chi Mc Bride's SWAT leader and Mc Garrett's cocky squad leader. These scenes are a chore to watch mostly due to Mc Garrett's age and lack of machismo. I like Alex O'Loughlin in the movie appearances he's made, but he's never held weight as a leading man. And he certainly doesn't look like he would win a staredown with a bull like Mc Bride. Again, this is where the cynicism creeps in. Mc Garrett is a parody of the average TV cop. He's well-coiffed, cocky, way too insubordinate, goes out of his way to annoy every authority known to man (including Homeland Security and the U.S. military) and is forgiven because he's "protective" of his squad. Sure.