(new) Hawaii Five-0 on CBS

Within the first couple of minutes of this blistering episode we’ve had an “oorah!”, a go-bag, and Joe White. Hey-ho, I thought, I’m going to like this one. And I did. Hired assassins are taking out the six-man SEAL team which did the thing in Marrakesh to which Agent Greer alluded a few episodes ago. Three are already down, leaving Steve, Joe, and a dude named Cole. The thing in Marrakesh, incidentally, was the taking out of a high-value target, on the orders of Greer. It might not even have been legal, apparently. Huh. Steve does at least ten illegal things before breakfast most days, because that’s how the Big K rolls, bitches.

Anyway, Steve is attacked at home – bizarrely, they only send one assassin; haven’t they heard of Steve? – and survives, chasing his badly-wounded assailant off. Grover starts to track him down. Steve and Joe, realising that this needs to be ended, hatch a plan, and in furtherance of it Steve visits Greer, who seems to be quarterbacking the whole thing from prison. According to her, the people behind Operation Get The SEALS are “rich, motivated, and ruthless”. Ooh! (It’s the son of the high-value target, now himself a wealthy shipping magnate in Denmark, who is funding the revenge operation.) Steve drops a couple of indiscreet hints, hoping to draw the assassins out, and he and Joe then retreat to Joe’s rather gorgeous Montana ranch. Cole turns up for the lolz.

Although Steve has made it clear that the rest of the Five-0 has to stay away from the Last Battle itself, they help a little. Grover captures the guy, half-dead through blood loss, who tried to kill Steve. You must help me, he says. You’re police. Only thing I must do, replies Grover magnificently, is “stay black and die”. And I’m not police; I’m Five-0. (Once again I have to reflect on the fact that people from all over the word are supposed to know about the existence and legal powers of this local police force.) Adam’s contribution is, of course, to talk to an old Yakuza contact.

So Steve, Joe, Cole, and a shit-ton of guns settle in at Joe’s ranch, and wait for the baddies, who duly appear. Inevitably, a huge battle ensues. The assassins are all killed, but at a price. Cole dies. Joe is hit. There’s a surgeon on the next ranch, he says to Steve; can you take me there? The only means of transport is equine, so Steve and Joe saddle up, leaving behind a ranch whose market value has just dropped considerably. But on the way to the surgeon, Joe calls a halt; there is no surgeon. He’s dying and he knows it.

And he’s right: before a beautiful Montanan sunset, Joe White breathes his last, in the arms of his most successful, uh, “tadpole”. It’s quite a big deal; Terry O’Quinn has been around this show for years, and now there’s no-one left to call Steve “son”. I thought this was the best episode of the season so far, and I fully expect Steve to go apeshit next week.

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NEW Hawaii Five-0