We Review the Latest Episode of Hawaii Five-0 SN07 EP01 – ‘Ready to Play?’

The 5-0 are back! The show returned with more bickering, parkour and a CGI cameo.


In the season 6 finale, Steve (Alex O’Loughlin) was shot and in need of a liver transplant. Danny (Scott Caan) volunteered, and the finale ended with them both after the procedure, both well, and bickering like an old married couple as per usual.

CGI Jack Lord, who played Steve McGarrett in the original series.


The season 7 premiere picked up a few weeks later and opened with Steve in the hospital chapel, where a mysterious figure strikes up a conversation with him. It is then revealed to be the original Steve McGarrett, the late Jack Lord. The CGI tribute is impressive for their TV budget but obviously is not as flawless as the CGI in the film. Although, it was still a lovely tribute, not everyone has found these recreations ethical. In the scene, Steve contemplates his future after his near-death experience, referencing the one that got away – Catherine (Michelle Borth), wondering if his commitment to the job has hindered his chances at a normal life. Jack Lord offers him advice, “Your worth is measured in the closure you bring, the people you save. That’s your real legacy. And the best legacy a man can leave behind is the people whose lives he has changed. Trust me.”

Although they are still recovering from the transplant and not allowed do strenuous activity, that doesn’t stop Danny and Steve from having a very competitive wheelchair race and chasing a serial killer, who unfortunately for them happens to be a parkour expert. Throughout the episode, Danny reminds Steve many times of what he did for him, and I’m sure it won’t be the last.

The parkour serial killer, Pierre Shaw (Jesse La Flair), is somewhat of a vigilante as he begins killing other serial killers and leaving chess pieces in their mouths, specifically pawns. It becomes personal for 5-0 when the killer leaves one of the bodies in 5-0 HQ and another in Grover’s (Chi McBride) car. They find out the rare chess set the pieces belong to was stolen by Shaw. They find him, but he manages to get away, leading into an amazing 5-minute chase sequence showcasing Jesse La Flair’s parkour skills. With nowhere left to run, Shaw leaps from one rooftop to another but the gap is too wide, and he falls to his death. However, the case isn’t closed. When Steve arrives home he finds a chess piece in his kitchen – the knight to be specific. Looks like there was a partner or a mastermind behind these events and they want to play a game with the 5-0. So, Hawaii still faces a threat! Could this be the first half of the season’s big bad?

Meanwhile, Chin (Daniel Dae Kim) has been taking care of his niece Sara, and they have grown close, but her aunt and uncle in Mexico have been informed and are filing for adoption. This leaves Chin to contemplate keeping Sara. Should he? There’s no question he would make a great parent, but is he best equipped to look after her particularly with the dangerous nature of the 5-0, and especially with this chess guy playing games with them.

Notable moments:

  • Hawaii has a new governor, Keiko Mahoe (Rosalind Chao). She states the previous governor gave her some advice; one, always bring a second copy of a speech to an event, and two, never underestimate the 5-0 task force. She takes the latter on board as she seems to trust the 5-0 to catch the serial killer.
  • Abby (Julie Benz) is staying for good, now an official member of HPD. I wonder if Abby and Chin’s relationship will last if he does choose to adopt Sara.
  • Steve and Danny bickered more than usual this episode, probably because they were stuck in the hospital together for weeks, but I think some more couples therapy is in order.

An epic chase scene, a touching tribute and plenty of McGarrett and Danno banter. Overall, it was a great premiere. What did you think of the premiere? Do you think Chin should adopt Sara?

The Good
  • It set up the season ahead and reminded us why we love the show - the action, humour, interesting dynamics within the team and that these characters do have emotional depth.
The Bad
  • Although there were some great moments, at times it struggled to hold my attention - particularly the first half of the episode, but by the end I was engrossed - especially that parkour chase scene.
4 Great

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