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Hawaii Five-0 - Mohala I Ka Wai Ka Maka O Ka Pua - Review: "Unfolded by the Water..."

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While last week was ostensibly the Halloween episode, the cold open of the world’s most terrifying traffic stop worked better as a horror show.

Two realtors from Nevada get the worst morning wakeup call of all time when they’re pulled over by someone claiming to be Honolulu PD. The fake cop demands that they get out of the car and shoots them when they don’t comply. Luckily, the passenger was recording the whole interaction. He may not have made it out of the encounter alive, but he does record the officer calling himself “Mathus.”

Meanwhile, Steve walks straight into the world’s weirdest intervention. The team (plus Dog the Bounty Hunter) isn’t here to talk to him about a drug or alcohol problem, but about his addiction to adrenaline.

Danny is very worried about Steve being “tumor free for the rest of the flick” and believes that the best way to keep his irradiated BFF free of cancer is to encourage Steve to eliminate stress. He doesn’t need to always be the one in front when the team goes into danger. Lou, Jerry, and Kamekona back Danny up (with Kamekona finding a way to monetize all of it). Tani just finds the whole thing very weird, but she does think it’s a pretty easy call. Junior uses it as an opportunity to kiss up (and show how much he respects his new roommate). Eddie remains silent on the subject.

Despite Steve insisting that Danny is being paranoid after going down the “WebMD rabbit hole” (who hasn’t gone down that rabbit hole at some point? I once thought I had the plague), his partner has taken it seriously enough to hire a stress management consultant for the day. Steve remains unconvinced but the consultant, Chloe, is good at her job. She tells Steve that if her day-long examination says he’s living a stress-free life, he’ll get to crow to everyone. There are few motivators as strong as Steve’s sense of smugness.

Chloe’s excellent people skills don’t help her when Steve is called to the crime scene. She’s never seen a dead body before, but manages to get over it in time to accompany Steve and Danny on their investigation. The Mathus name drop confuses Duke, who claims Officer Mathus died three years ago.

Tani’s research leads Steve and Danny to Claudia Nelson and her son, Oliver Mathus. Well, it leads them to Oliver Mathus at least. Claudia is dead and has been for some time. Her son, who was taking a number of powerful medications, seemingly had a psychotic break when he found his mom.

A concerned homeowner describes him as tripping on something when he finds “little Ollie” eating cereal and watching television in his house. Before he can get the 911 operators to believe him about this kindergarten cop, Oliver assaults him.

However, he doesn’t kill him, and the homeowner lives to tell his story to Danny and Steve. Steve takes the story of this strange would-be cop to Alicia, who provides some insight into someone with dissociative identity disorder. Alicia warns him that there might be a “protector” identity at work.

Tani and Jerry believe that Oliver is trying to go back to the life he had when he was a child. He breaks into his old home, wears his dad's old uniform, and drives his old car. His father wasn’t much of a role model either. Jerry believes that the original Officer Mathus was the perpetrator of a mob hit thirty years before.

Alicia contacts Oliver’s therapist and digs up some footage of the true Oliver, an easy-going guy trying to control six other identities. The most violent of these alters is Patrick, a manifestation of Oliver’s feelings about his father. The team briefly discusses the ethics of locking up Oliver for Patrick’s crimes, but are interrupted before that can reach an understanding.

Ollie contacts law enforcement when he discovers that Patrick’s killed another random person. Steve and Danny race to the scene, but Oliver has already snuck into HPD headquarters. An eagle-eyed Duke immediately notices something is wrong and manages not to spook Mathus. He locks him in an office and calls the team. Unfortunately, Oliver has a few tricks up his sleeve. He escapes through the ceiling and steals a police cruiser. When the team tracks him down to his home, Patrick threatens to kill himself and thus all the other alters.

Alicia, meanwhile, is studying the videos from Oliver’s therapy sessions. Something about his language gives Alicia the clue needed to end the confrontation peacefully. The one person she knows that Ollie (and probably all the other alters) love is Oliver’s mom. She gets the insane but somewhat brilliant idea of dressing up as his mother and trying to calm him down. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work. Ollie isn’t the one in charge, and Patrick is too smart to be fooled. Alicia has to confront him with his own words over and over for Ollie to finally take over. She manages to get the gun away from him.

The actual mystery wraps up a bit unsatisfactorily. I guess you can infer that the real Officer Mathus was responsible for the mob hit thirty years earlier, and Oliver somehow internalized the fact that his father was a killer. In fashioning his father’s persona, he just started killing random people? It’s a little vague, and I wish we could have traded maybe one of the quirky stress management scenes for a little more explanation.

But, the mysteries aren’t what the show is really about, and the writers manage to make these little additional scenes tell an important story about Steve and Danny’s partnership.

Danny’s choice to bring in the stress management consultant comes back to haunt him when Chloe decides that Danny himself is a major source of stress in Steve’s life. When Danny mentions the restaurant, Chloe’s radar pings. Starting a business is obviously going to be a big source of stress. Chloe asks Danny to be positive, agreeable, and civil. Danny’s a little tired always being the adult in the partnership, but decides to give it a shot.

It takes about five minutes for Steve to realize that something’s wrong with his partner. His concern turns serious when Danny encourages Steve to give Grace a driving lesson. This is so bonkers that Steve immediately realizes that Chloe has been asking Danny to be nicer. Although Danny is happy to follow along, Steve doesn’t want his friends treating him any differently.

When the case with Oliver is over, the team gathers at the shrimp truck to hear Chloe’s assessment. Kamekona’s ok with Chloe’s tame suggestions until she tells Steve to cut back on the shrimp. Kamekona threatens to ban her in return.

Steve and Danny both declare this all a waste of time, but they get to the real issue. Danny’s the one stressed, and he’s managed to get some form of caretaker’s fatigue trying to keep Steve safe and healthy. The two vow to be a little more honest with each other, but think things are probably good the way they are!

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

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