By Darren Franich
Updated September 24, 2012 at 12:00 PM EDT

Hawaii Five-O

The year was 2010. The American citizenry was torn asunder by a stressful midterm election. The Far East Movement was ascending the Billboard Hot 100 chart with “Like a G6.” After resolving sundry environmental and political crises, Peter Jackson was preparing to finally adapt The Hobbit into a mere two movies. And the CBS remake of Hawaii Five-0 was quickly becoming the most popular new series on television. To celebrate the show’s combustive mixture — tropical landscape, movie-level stunts, boats, helicopters — the gamemakers here at created our very own unofficial Hawaii Five-0 Bingo. With the show now an established part of the CBS lineup, we figured it would be fun to pull out the old Bingo Board for last night’s third season premiere.

The results were intriguing, revealing how Hawaii Five-0 has evolved. The show has become more generous to its ensemble. Back in the early days, Daniel Dae Kim was mainly relegated to surveillance work, with the occasional badass motorcycle montage; lone female Grace Park was typically deployed undercover sting operations requiring faux-hooker attire. On last night’s premiere, though, Park’s Kono got to execute the big cop-stunt of the night — jumping on the hood of a moving car, bang bang! — while Kim’s Chin Ho shouldered most of the night’s drama, seeking vengeance for his dead wife. As the show has evolved, its villains have grown more complicated: The interchangeable gangsters and curiously island-oriented terrorists have been replaced by ongoing nemeses like mysterious Chinese supervillain Wo Fat. From what I can tell, everyone has replaced their iPhones with Droid phones. And, of course, when we first designed the Bingo Board, former Heroes star Masi Oka was not yet a regular and nobody had a love interest.

Still, in other ways, Hawaii Five-0 remains pleasantly unchanged from its early days. Scott Caan’s Danno remains at odds with his ex-wife — at one point in the episode, she phoned him on his Droid phone, and the ringtone was ELO’s “Evil Woman,” and then Danno held up his phone and said, “Can you believe my ex-wife is calling my Droid phone?” (That last part is a lie.) It took less than ten minutes for a helicopter to appear. It seems inconceivable that the show could ever not include a car chase. Anyone who doesn’t believe that the show is really a slow-burn romance between Danno and Steve needs to really take a good look at the sequence where Steve address Danno as “Boo-boo” mid-banter. And just when I thought we were going to go an entire episode without a sunset, the very last scene featured Steve and Danno staring at a departing airplane, with the sun slowly descending in the distance. Check out the full Board below:

Follow Darren on Twitter: @DarrenFranich

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Hawaii Five-O

  • TV Show
  • In Season
  • CBS