Archive for May, 2013

'Five-0' wins Monday, but lots more ‘to be continued’

May 21st, 2013


CBS’ “Hawaii Five-0” finished season three Monday (May 20) on a high note — winning its 9 p.m. (10 p.m. Mainland) time slot — but it was somewhat of a hollow victory.
The results were much better than last week, but not quite the numbers of the freshman year.
While the Hawaii-based procedural finished first in the 18 to 49 demographics with a 2.0 rating and attracting 9 million viewers, “Five-0” really had no competition since ABC’s usual “Castle,” the drama that constantly wins the hour, was pre-empted with a “Motive” series premiere that pulled in 6.8 million viewers for second place. NBC’s “Revolution” garnered 5.8 million for third.
The "Five-0" episode was entitled “Aloha, Malama Pono.” It might simply have been called “To Be Continued,” because that mantra prevailed. A lot of character/plot set-ups, a lot left hanging, presumably to be continued next season.

“To be continued” was uttered repeatedly in Monday’s (May 29) “Hawaii Five-0” finale, twice by Steve McGarrett (Alex O’Loughlin), once by Doris McGarrett (Christine Lahti).
And continuity, some obvious, some not, became the underlying element, played out with practically every single character, from Top Four to the ranks. Only one missing in action: Kamekona (Taylor Wily); will be open a cupcake bakery next season?
The TBC notion could also be applied to the final ratings for the season: how will the show do in season four, particularly since it’s moving from Mondays to 8 p.m. (9 p.m.) Fridays.

There were teasers, of course, notably the four-will-be-three element. The conclusion, to be played out in season four’s opening, hinted that Kono (Grace Park) might have been readily eliminated. She' still a problem for her peers and the viewers, still romantically involved with Adam (Ian Anthony Dale), the yakuza brother, and still asking folks like Catherine (Michelle Borth) to retrieve data for her. Her fate, and ours, as viewers?

To be continued. Kono, still wounded, witnessed Adam inadvertently shooting his brother Michael (Daniel Henney) in a gun struggle; by the episode’s end, she chose to flee with Adam to Shanghai, a bizarre trip arranged by Mama McG (Christine Lahti), who boards a tanker to find her peace.
Of course, you know Kono’s not going away for long, even if the actress doesn’t much like it Hawaii. Could she be killed on the show, or die due to complications from taking a bullet? Certainly. Could she simply walk and exit the series? Of course; she has reportedly been unhappy, mostly about salary, so somewhat of an off-screen problem with producers; if you recall, she didn’t appear at season three’s Sunset on the Beach premiere, though she was in town; go figure it out. But you know she’ll be back, like a bad penny.
To be continued: Will Mama McG, an unnecessary punctuation mark and a thorn in son McG’s life in season three, recur next year? She was destined to co-star in NBC’s “Beverly Hills Cop,” but the pilot was never picked up. So expect to see her next season (yawn) since she still is in cahoots with Wo Fat (Mark Dacascos).
TBC: Will Catherine rekindle a relationship with her ex? Not essential in the “H50” storytelling; so why, then, the needless encounter with the dude in the early minutes of the show? Will Michelle curtail her live-in relationship with McG? Not likely; that’s the only relevant love thread worth keeping.
And: Why did Chin (Daniel Dae Kim) make that phone call to Leilani (Lindsay Price), the nurse he met when he was held hostage? To rekindle another off-hour relationship? TBC.
Also TBC: Danno (Scott Caan) encountered Dr. Gabrielle Asano (Autumn Reeser) and he told her, “I don’t know what I was thinking,” and you wonder what’s next? Gotta be played out next season. Okeh.
The one TBC that has relevance and begs some kind of explanation: the relationship between Wo Fat and McG; why Mama McG visited Wo Fat in that prison steel-and-glass cubicle, before McG made his visit. Is Mama McG Wo Fat’s mom, too? That would make McG his bro, or half-bro, depending on how the spool unreels. McG is in a bad place; Wo Fat has a bad, disfigured face.
To be continued. ...

'Today' on NBC: see it live and again—on tape delay

May 19th, 2013


NBC’s “Today” show, taping its Monday May 20 program live from the beach in front of the Royal Hawaiian Hotel in Waikiki, will make history of sorts.
The live feed will air as it happens, from 1 to 3 a.m., while most of Hawaii will be in darkness and asleep, to coincide with the East Coast time frame. Then from 7 a.m., the program will repeat via satellite-delay, as it usually does on Hawaii News Now (KHNL/KGMB).
Hosts Matt Lauer, Savannah Guthrie, Natalie Morales and Willie Geist will be on hand for the Hawaii show; meteorologist Al Roker has had to return home to tend to weather issues on the Mainland.
This is not the first time the Peacock Network has aimed its camera on Island life. The first time was in the Bryant Gumbel/Katie Couric era, when the NBC team landed on the shores of Waikiki at the very same Royal Hawaiian, also known as the Pink Palace, the iconic luxury hotel in the Starwood franchise.
In the first go, Israel Kamakawiwo’ole and the Makaha Sons were among the Hawaii guest stars.
This time, the local celebs will include ukulele virtuoso Jake Shimabukuro and pop/folk music wizard Jack Johnson.
As usual, there will be visits with local chefs and restaurants and fun-in-the-sun segments involving surfing.
The public may gather and observe the wee-hour filming from the beach vantage point; only hotel guests who are able to stay awake will be allowed on the shore side of the beachfront barriers.
Producers have been in the islands the past week to stage, tape and complete pre-recorded segments during the daytime that will air during the live primetime.

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Kipling store at Ala Moana features The Lylas this evening

May 16th, 2013


The LYLAS: Helping launch Kipling store at Ala Moana Center.

The LYLAS, the up-and-coming girl group comprised of sisters of Hawaii superstar Bruno Mars, will perform at 5 p.m. today (May 16) at the opening of Kipling, the robust luggage and accessory label, at Ala Moana Center.
Doors opened this morning, but the festivities will be this evening. Following a mini-performance, The Lylas will do an autograph session from 6 to 7 p.m.
Give-aways and other activities were slated throughout the day, with shoppers able to earn prizes ranging from discount cards for future purchases at Kipling and a piece of classic Kipling luggage.
The Belgian brand is known for its contemporary design and trendy shapes and colors, as well as the iconic gorilla-with-thumb-in-the-mouth that dangles from most luggage, roll-aboards and shoulder bags.
It’s a unisex brand that’s durable; I’ve bought ‘em over the years, locally and in luggage shops in New York City, and they last forever and have made many trips with me.

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'Five-0' moving to Fridays, amid a less demanding neighborhood

May 15th, 2013


It’s official: CBS is moving “Hawaii Five-0” from its Monday slot at 9 p.m. (10 p.m Mainland) to Friday night at 8 p.m.
So the rumors have been true. And in the new environment, there will be less pressure and fewer worries about numbers and rankings. Perhaps less stress, from one standpoint; so maybe the show will find its inner strength and grow and improve and, well, become a reborn project.
The Hawaii-based show, earlier renewed for a fourth season based on a previous TNT syndication, dodged cancellation because of the deal. This, as the procedural struggled somewhat and see-sawed for ratings stability opposite ABC’s “Castle,” which most often prevailed. NBC’s “Revolution” was third, though yanked for months during a mid-season hiatus, with its own ratings and viewership issues.
The repositioning on Fridays, sandwiched between “Undercover Boss” and “Blue Bloods,” is considered the death knell for under-performing shows.
It’s a neighborhood where figures and standings matter a skosh, but not like on other nights when competition is fierce and viewership soars.
Fridays, alas, is construed as the glue factory for thoroughbreds which have lost their glory in the horse race. TV critics are not silent about this positioning, and may have already wiped off "Five-0" as a contender and competitor this early in the game. While the move may benefit “Five-0,” it could also diminish its strength, eliminating a fifth season lifeline. Only time — and performance — will decide.
When “Five-0” vacates the Monday position this fall, the replacement show on CBS will be “Hostages,” with 15 episodes airing through January; then “Intelligence” assumes the slot for 13 episodes through June. Comedies will continue to precede the new dramas.
On Fridays, “Five-0” will compete with these shows: “Shark Tank” on ABC and “Grimm” on NBC.
Strange bedfellows: shark infestation (not literal sharks) and an element of the grim.

'H50' glides and displays 'Mission: Impossible' vibes

May 14th, 2013

5-13-13H50Preview-2CBS’ homegrown “Hawaii Five-0” continues to glide; Monday’s (May 13) episode attracted 7.68 million viewers, with a 1.8 rating in in the key 18 to 49 demographics. This was a drop of a tenth, down from last week’s 1.9 rating.
The show is on a downward spiral, seemingly no longer able to bypass ABC’s “Castle,” which had 11.26 million viewers in the Nielsens, good for a 2.2 demo and No. 1 ranking. The third show, NBC’s “Revolution,” had fewer viewers at 5.72 million, but raked in a 1.9 rating in the demos.
But whoa: The show is displaying a late-in-the-season sass and style. If you ask me, the model is “Mission: Impossible.”
“Five-0” had a credible plot in the “He welo ‘ohana (Family Business)” show, revealing and compounding familiar character traits in Doris McGarrett (Christine Lahti) and Kono (Grace Park). The latter, who is Steve McGarrett’s (Alex O’Loughlin), continues to provide headaches and worry for the commander of “Five-0,” and Kono also still is caught in the precarious relationship with Adam (Ian Anthony Dale), whose Yakuza ties intrude on their lives. Worse, Kono gets shot, though her bravura and reckless behavior brings tension to the plot; but you wonder when she’s going to get it, and get out of this messy situation.
This raises an issue: How long can a dead-end relationship last in a story arc? Even Mama McG’s recent beau (Treat Williams) is back, partnering in her quest to retrieve a precious microfiche in a high-security office. But in a “Mission: Impossible”-type feat, the attempt to secure a pass card, cutting off the TV circuitry in the facility, and rushing into the office on a potential government employee (Craig T. Nelson) whom Mama McG knows, is unabashedly cinematic and ambitious for a procedural. OK, silly, too.
But brownie points to the storytellers: the inclusion of ‘iwi matters, relating to the light rail in the works for Honolulu which continues to search for bones, is a slice of life; more of this kind of relatable elements, and this should could begin an upward struggle to regain viewers.
However, the matter of a Yakuza body dump, with beaucoup graves in a parcel of land that would eventually be where rail prevails, is a bit much — but it helps frame the story.
That in-the-elevator-shaft sequence, with Mama McG and McG dodging a rising car, is the stuff of films. Yes, “MI” minus Tom Cruise.
At best, the show projects a lot of effort and energy, for a change. The usual banter between McG and Danno (Scott Caan) is tolerable; the exchange between McG and Mama McG, including small-kid-time memories of magic, is sweet and proper, demonstrating a rich and warm past connecting to a tense and confused presence.
Add the helicopter drop, and retrieval, and you have more “MI” flavor.
Perhaps that’s the underlying message with this one: The mission is to improve and get back on track. And while it seems to be unlikely, it’s not impossible.

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