Show and Tell Hawai'i

'Five-0' at its 100th milestone: Future is right on the fence

November 8th, 2014



“Hawaii Five-0,” which just showed its milestone 100th episode Friday night (Nov. 7), deserves congratulations for the Big 1-0-0 achievement.


Yep, it’s been a ride.

The island-filmed show, in its repositioned Friday night slot on CBS  (8 p.m. here, 9 p.m. Mainland), has been a blessing in disguise. This is where fading shows are traditionally sent, but this is also where “Five-0” has earned its survival stripes and a new lease on life.

If the show remained in its Monday night nook, it would have been disasterville with stiff competition. Its challenge this season, for instance, would have been opposite NBC’s “The Black List” and ABC’s “Castle,” darlings among viewers.  CBS put “NCIS: Los Angeles” in the previous “Five-0” spot. And remember, the Monday airtime was at 9 p.m. (10 p.m. Mainland).

In Season 5, however, “Five-0” — with reruns already in syndication on TNT — still is in jeopardy of cancellation. But it is good company, since among the  CBS shows in the same boat are  “Blue Bloods,” “The Good Wife,” “CSI” and “Madam Secretary,” according to TV by the Numbers.

According to analysts, the aforementioned shows are right on the fence of renewals or cancellations by next May 15, when networks shine the green-for-go light, or red-for-retirement signals.

The likeliest to get another green light: “Blue Bloods,” because of its rating power on Friday night, following “Five-0.” And “Elementary,” “NCIS,” “NCIS: Los Angeles”  and
“NCIS: New Orleans” are among the dramas certainties to be renewed.

“Five-0” this season is drawing the most viewers in its time slot, but it has been second in the preferred barometer of adults 18 to 14, generally behind ABC’s “Shark Tank.” This is the category, not the viewer numbers,  that determine ad revenues for the network.

According to the Nielsen ratings, here’s how “Five-0” has performed this season:


Air date                18 to 49 demos           Viewer in millions

9/26                            1.20                                  8.99

10/3                            1.30                                  8.33

10/10                          1.20                                 9.19

10/17                          1.20                                 9.17

10/24                          1.10                                 8.92

10/31                          1.10                                 9.47

11/7                             1.20                                 8.91


Fridays have been generally steady, with CBS attracting the most viewers (8.81 million this week) and ABC posting the best adult 18 to 49 demo numbers (1.6 this week).

Friday’s most-viewed series generally is “Blue Bloods”  (11.41 million this week) and the top adult demo leader has been “Shark Tank” (1.9 this week).

Certainly, a procedural in its fifth season maintains a loyal following, but if you’ve not yet become part of the viewing ohana, it’s a bit late to join in. Numbers often fade, rather than grow, over time.

Regarding “Ina Puha (If Perhaps),” the 100th episode, it was an invention/reflection of things and themes past and present, with McGarrett and Company in dual/alternate reality/fantasy sequences.  Wo Fat kidnaps and tortures McG. Dad McG is alive;  and other key players are assembled in before/now mode.

If you’ve been a follower, it’s flashback with a twist; if you’re a newbie, it’s formidable overload. Yes? No?
One great element: “All for One,” the special original tune composed expressly for “Five-0” by John Ondrasik, the leader of  the group Five for Fighting who yielded such hit tunes as “Superman (It’s Not Easy),” “100 Years” and “Riddle (You and I).”  It was a splendid idea pitched by “Five-0” producer Peter Lenkov to the composer — and show aired the entire tune, which characterized the flavor of the special episode.

Yet the show has had its moment of glory, in Season 1, when “Five-0” made the Guinesss World Records in 2012 for the “Highest-Rated New Show in the U.S.,” with a record 19.34 million viewers for “Kai e’e,” its Jan. 23 2011 episode.

Hana hou?

6 Responses to “'Five-0' at its 100th milestone: Future is right on the fence”

  1. theDman:

    Those are pretty decent marks, especially for a Friday night. Yes, Monday night would have been a death-sentence, but they made the move that saved them. They are not a top 20 show, but they don't have to be to survive.

    But let's give credit where credit is due, the writing got better. That is what a TV show (or movie for that matter) is all about. It's not about the actors, it's not about the "action", its not about the babes, it's the story, and it better be good.

  2. Manoa_Fisherman:

    But why did they kill off the best villain, Wo Fat, and take one of the last good local actors left on the series, Mark Dacascos, off the payroll? They killed off or lock up all the good local folks like Kelly Hu and Jason Scott Lee. If the Rock showed up, they would find a way to kill him off, too!

    This 100th episode reminded me of the finale for "St. Elsewhere", the whole series is just a snow globe found in the inventory of the personal effects of Jack Lord's old Kahala apartment. ROSEBUD

  3. theDman:


    I hear you about the local actors...more than you would know...but this show has to make it on the mainland and that audience really doesn't care about local actors. At least that's the theory the studios go by. They want "their" people in the roles now. I don't know if the old H50 model would work today. Not sure audiences would accept all the "brown-skin" guys on the show. I could be wrong, but I think audiences have changed to that effect.

    Of course I also did not think The Office would ever become a hit with their hodge podge of no name actors, but in the early days, that show had brilliant writing. That's what made it.

  4. Pammie:

    Thanks for the article and the ratings analysis , Wayne  . I don't usually watch the show but I watched a few scenes  last Friday .For me  the Original was better, written and acted. Too much torture and violence for a show placed in Hawaii. 🙁
    For me no casting local actors in the main cast was a big mistake. They should had gone with at least two Hawaiian actors in the main cast .

    About syndication , Hawaii Five-0 is still airing reruns on TNT but mostly airing during overnight graveyard hours because of the weak numbers it was getting . And as expected a write down for H50 has been announced. So this is not good news for the show.

    "Turner execs didn’t elaborate on the specific shows that would be written off, nor would execs comment on the matter. But the $400 million figure was seen as a stunner by seasoned industry observers — and more evidence that the management of Turner’s cablers is in need of an overhaul.

    Sources say a significant portion of the write-down is coming from two megabuck off-network acquisitions that have been disappointing performers for TNT: “Hawaii 5-0,” from CBS’ syndie arm, and “The Mentalist,” from Warner Bros."

    Here is the link for the whole article if anyone is interested,

  5. AniMatsuri:

    All I know is that late night Monday spot is a death spot for CBS shows nowadays. NCIS: LA's ratings have taken a nose dive since moving to that day and time.

  6. Wiseguy70005:

    Adults 18 to 14?? Please proofread.

    Yes, Pammie, the original was good but it was not perfect. I watch both the original (on DVD) and the new (on CBS). There was a lot of cringe-inducing acting and writing especially in the later years. An objective opinion cannot be had from someone who doesn't "usually watch the show" but only "watched a few scenes last Friday" and apparently has a crush on Jack Lord, who could do no wrong. You and Wayne keep harping on the 18-49 demo (articles tend to favor ratings analysis with little mention of quality). If the original were aired now the 18-49 ratings would be near zero. Like it or not, times change and entertainment which reflects the times has to also. A faster pace and more action is the norm. As far as local actors go, name recognition has always been a factor in what actors are hired. Nothing new there.

    And again, syndication is sale to local stations not a network like TNT. For example, Bones is both on TNT and in syndication. The syndication episodes are not the same as the ones on TNT who shows many more episodes per week.

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