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First Look at Hawaii Five-O Reboot

May 21st, 2010 by Ryan Ozawa · 10 Comments · Hawaii, Television, Video

As the world, and Hawaii, prepares to say goodbye to “LOST,” news came this week that CBS had picked up the long-awaited reboot of its hit series from over three decades ago. The new “Hawaii Five-O” will be part of the network’s fall line up, and is already one of the most talked-about new shows this year.

Many “LOST” fans were thrilled to hear in February that actor Daniel Dae Kim had been cast in a lead role, portraying Det. Chin Ho Kelly (previously played by Kam Fong). He joins Alex O’Loughlin, who has the biggest shoes to fill in the role of Det. Steve McGarrett (a character synonymous with the late Jack Lord), and Scott Caan, who plays Detective Daniel “Danno” Williams (succeeding James MacArthur).

The cast is rounded out by Grace Park, best known for her role on the reboot of “Battlestar Galactica.” And just as the new “Battlestar” raised eyebrows by changing the gender of an iconic character from the original series, Park will play Kono Kalakaua, originally played by Gilbert “Zulu” Kauhi. In the new “Hawaii Five-O,” Kono is a professional surfer, and Det. Chin Ho Kelly’s niece.

The pilot was filmed all over O’ahu in March and April, concurrently with “LOST” shooting as well as a few other productions (making things unusually complicated for “LOST” spotters). The plot was closely guarded, but basically depicted how the new team comes together. Apparently the final product went over well with network executives. CBS unveiled the official promotional video at its “upfronts” on Wednesday (see above), and easily got the most buzz.

The promo looked great, as the show will obviously take full advantage of the range of settings available in Hawaii (like “LOST”). There’s lots of action — from stunts to car crashes to pyrotechnics — set among gorgeous mountain and valley vistas, gleaming skyscrapers, and grimy industrial lots. Of course, the sun, sand and surf affords many opportunities to show off some skin. And as a cop procedural, the number of storylines is almost limitless.

Even surrounded by so much potential, it still comes down to whether the characters and plots are compelling. Will they go darker and grittier, like the “Battlestar” reboot? Or will they pay homage to, or even embrace, some of the camp and cheese now associated with the original series? Hopefully, they can do both.

Separate from the promo, though, many fans of the original “Hawaii Five-O” series are intensely interested in the new opening title sequence. After all, even if you can’t remember a single storyline from the show in the 1960s and ’70s, you probably know the original intro theme song and images by heart.

Check it out below. I’m actually glad to see how much of the original imagery is echoed (but the “Terminator 2″-like whiz-bang overlays are a bit much). And the theme song is still eminently recognizable. I like the addition of guitars, though it’s just not quite the same without the crisp horns, real drums, and triumphant ending. Still, it says “familiar but different,” and that’s a decent start.

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10 Comments so far ↓

  • Genevieve

    It looks great! I’m too young for the original, so I don’t have anything to compare it to, but it looks great! I still can’t get over Daniel Dae Kim’s “regular” voice – sans Korean accent. lol Thanks for the peek!

  • Geoff Gentry (xforce11)

    I’m looking forward to it. I’m glad Daniel is in the productions and that Hawaii is still on the TV after Lost is off. I hope it does well.

  • Jeremy in Rochester

    I remember the original on late night reruns when I was a kid, but not enough to know how much of an homage to it this update is.

    However, this looks exciting, and Hawaii is a great locale for a procedural cop show – it beats having yet another one based in LA, or Miami, or NYC. And I’m glad that DDK is getting a pretty decent role, with no accent, after LOST. I hope this show lasts a long time.

  • mel

    On one of the promo clips, one of the producers said they were going to be some comedic elements in this new series. As I recall and watch the reruns of the original “Hawaii Five-0″, the stories were more hard hitting (if not cheesy as you state) than comedic. Fact is I cannot remember much comedy in much of the original episodes.

    Putting comedy in this reboot may lower its dramatic level. The reboot of “Battlestar Galactica” was better than the original because it contained very little and mostly no comedy. Was more dark and hard hitting.

    Daniel Dae Kim is a lucky guy as he has gone from one series on another. Die had “Babylon 5″ fans like myself also remember Kim from “Crusade” which was a short lived sequel to the “Babylon 5″ franchise.

    Of course he did great in “Lost” though I was saddened to see Jin and his wife Sun killed at the end of the series.

  • Maureen

    I’m so excited and anxiously waiting to watch the new and action packed Hawaii Five-O, with a gifted and energetic young cast, Alex O’Loughlin, Daniel Dae Kim, Scott Caan, Grace Park, Taryn Manning, Jean Smart and James Marsters, this September 2010 on CBS. This is going to be a very successful new crime drama for CBS.

  • Isabel Barros

    I am very excited about Hawaii.
    For the video I saw, promises to have lots of action, the cast was well chosen and no one better than the talented Alex O’Loughlin to star in this role that was tailor-made for him.
    I am sure it will be the success of the season and will last for many seasons

  • kahuku

    I’m anxious to see this. The credits make the film style look like it will be a cross between CSI and Burn Notice.

  • Pommienana/Mary E

    The opening theme song isn’t the only thing that now “Rocks” about this wonderful new version of a much loved classic. So does the gorgeous new cast of actors!!!! How do you say :HOT” in Hawaiian? I hear the writers and director are fabulous as well. I just can,t wait to see this
    GO HAWAII 5-0.

  • MichaelC2B

    Thanks for the nice article – I am a devoted fan of Alex O’Loughlin, and I am so excited about this show. It looks amazing and I can’t wait to see it!

  • Alex Cortez

    Man oh man, with some of my fav shows going off the air (lost, 24), I thought about selling the tv, but this show looks like it’s going to be great. I’ve been a big fan of O’Loughlin for a while, looking forward to what he does with this role.

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