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Hawaii Five-0 - E Malama Pono - Review:"Handle with Care"

So, they finally found that missing uranium.

If you were looking for a resolution to last week’s cliffhanger, you would be disappointed in tonight’s episode. Instead, “E Malama Pono” offers a resolution to cliffhanger from several weeks ago. In a previous episode, the team found out that uranium had been smuggled on to the island. Now, they find out that a bombmaker has just arrived as well.

But first, there’s the opening. We cut in to a tense raid on a warehouse. The team clears the area, but is caught off guard when an explosion rips the building apart. Of course, this is just a scenario. Steve and Danny are training police recruits and running them through certain situations.

Steve emphasizes the fact that the most important aspect of any mission is trusting your team members. I don’t know how that would have helped them in the hypothetical raid. Trusting your team has nothing to do with knowing whether or not there’s a bomb hidden in the building.

Danny isn’t buying Steve’s lesson, but for a different reason. He’s irked that Steve went through the stuff on his desk. He’s so mad, he interrupts Steve’s speech to ask the recruits their opinion. The instructor shuts it down quickly, but not before Danny gets his two cents in about Steve’s alleged betrayal.

Later, Steve is still arguing with Chin about the snooping (for the record, Chin is against it), when he walks into his house and finds blood. I assumed that it might have been either Alicia or Madison. Instead, it’s Sang Min.

Steve calls Noelani for help. She’s not pleased. Max obviously didn’t give her a very clear picture of how the team operates. Getting called out to treat a mysterious gunshot wound isn’t the most unusual thing they have expected their medical examiner to do.

Sang Min tells Steve he got shot smuggling someone on to the island. Sang Min was told that it was a poor refugee family. Instead, it was one of the world’s most wanted terrorists. Nigerian bombmaker Desmond Abati shoots Sang Min and takes off into the Hawaiian wilderness.

The team is concerned that Abati has been called on to the island to help set up a terrorist training camp in the middle of nowhere. While the rest of the team check out the house of Abati’s local contact, Steve and Danny parachute into the area of the camp. Steve thinks this would be a good time to keep needling Danny about what he found on his desk. Steve found a list of goals Danny hasn’t accomplished, and wonders why Danny would write about going traveling when he has complained on every mission they ever took out of the state. Danny finally admits that he was making a list of things to do once he retires. It turns out that he’s been seriously contemplating leaving the team.

Steve’s shock at this may be the reason Abati and his henchmen manage to get the drop of Danny and Steve. The two are captured and led to the training camp, but quickly regain the upper hand. They do, however, let Abati escape and one of his associates activate the huge uranium bomb the terrorists have been building. The two only have an hour to disarm it before it goes off.

Steve examines the intricately made bomb, made of the stolen uranium and the extremely unstable TATP. He tells Danny that he can’t disarm it, and there’s no cell phone reception at the camp. Their only chance is to drive the bomb to the drop zone and hope that they can contact someone knowledgeable to disarm the bomb in time. They also have to hope that someone else will catch Abati in the meantime. It’s a lot of positive thinking for an almost impossible situation.

Danny does his usual amount of complaining, but is convinced by Steve that it’s the only way. The two of them just have to drive an old truck leaded with an unstable bomb through the Hawaiian jungle. No big deal.

Steve and Danny’s predicament allows the writers to indulge in their favorite type of Hawaii Five-0 scene: Danny complaining about Steve’s driving. I’m sure they were delighted to have a plot-based reason to write another of these conversations.

Danny also takes the time to distract Steve from his perilous mission by talking about the reason he wrote the retirement list. He doesn’t want Charlie to worry about him when he goes to work and points out that Steve must have felt the same way about his police-officer father. That’s not in great taste, considering how Steve’s father died.

When the fuel line of the truck gets a hole, Steve takes the opportunity to try to out-MacGyver Hawaii Five-0’s lead-in show. With a flare, rubber mats, and wet tree bark, he manages to patch the hole. They get the truck up and running again only to find out that the trail is flooded in front of them.

As the two try to build a track for the truck, Steve takes the time to talk to point out Danny’s hypocrisy when it comes to trust. Steve trusted his partner to tell him about a retirement decision, even if Danny has decided to do something ridiculous like open an Italian eatery.

Meanwhile Steve’s wishful thinking about Abati didn’t work out well. The second he gets on to a road, he flags down and shoots a patrol officer. Maybe Steve should have been teaching recruits to not trust others so much. Abati uses the officer’s car to run down Sang Min’s location. For a career criminal, Sang Min also shouldn’t just trust whoever knocks on his door.

If the bomb goes off, half the island could be destroyed. Abati doesn’t want to stick around for that. He wants Sang Min to arrange for transport out of Honolulu.

Steve talks Danny through driving across the stream and finally gets cell phone service to contact Chin. Unfortunately, Kono has just killed Abati in an ambush set up with Sang Min. He took the secrets of disarming the bomb to his grave.

Chin very quickly manages to get them in touch with a naval officer, who tells them that they can’t completely disarm the bomb. The only thing they can do is get the uranium out of the bomb’s blast radius, which will minimize the damage. Steve manages to rig up a little radiation protection using a car battery, which doesn’t seem like it would actually do much good. He separates the uranium from the bomb and the two drive as fast as their old truck will go.

It’s not fast enough, and Steve flips the truck to create a shield for the two of them.

The first scene of the episode serves as a foreshadowing for the big climax when the bomb goes off. While still in shock and deafened by the blast, Steve and Danny go back to bickering about what Danny will name his hypothetical Italian restaurant. It’s safe to assume they’re all right.

The entire team gathers together to try out Danny’s planned menu, although he assures them that he’s not going to retire anytime soon. After getting some shots in about Sang Min’s mullet, Lou gets a call from Honolulu PD. It shakes him to his core. If Steve and Danny hadn’t blundered into the camp, the terrorists would have planted the bomb at the Palace. Five-0 was the target all along. Abati is dead, but he was only the bombmaker. There’s someone still out there who hates the team so much they were willing to take out half the island to get to them. Who could it be?

What did you think of this week’s episode? Let me know in the comments!