Hawaii Five-0 Review: Those Among Us

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On Hawaii Five-0 Season 4 Episode 20, it was our worst nightmare come to life: the discovery that our children are being recruited on U.S. soil to be terrorists.

It sounds absurd, for how could that ever happen? These are not kids raised abroad or even trained abroad. They are living in paradise and yet are still being indoctrinated and turned against their own country. 

With the one-year anniversary of the Boston Marathon bombings having just taken place, this all felt a bit close to home. In the real world, the Boston Marathon bombings were by two young men, who were ultimately found to be not politically motivated.

But this episode served to echo that tragedy, which really brought home the reality that anyone can be a terrorist.

So this installment emphasized the same message. A terrorist can be anyone:  it can be your next door neighbor, one of the kids at school, a soccer coach, or just one of the guys at the car wash.  Anyone can get the supplies and instructions to make a bomb.  

It is just terrifying to think that someone would want to and that they would strike at not only our military personnel, but those who would rush to their aid - to want to target first-responders.

The episode began innocuously enough as we watched an ordinary guy, a pool man, be in the wrong place at the wrong time and took two bullets in the chest for it. He had only come to check on a thermostat glitch at what should have been an empty house, while the owners were away.  

How was he to know that the young girl, who was house-sitting, was a terrorist in the making and was using the house to cook bomb making materials?

The mystery at first was all about the hundreds of tree air fresheners hanging in the kitchen of the house. But that mystery was soon solved once acetone was found dumped nearby. If only that house had been being used to cook meth.  

Yet, instead, it was something much worse. Thanks to the fine teamwork by Five-0, it was also ascertained that the house wifi had been used and it lead straight back to one of the murderers. A rooftop chase ended rather abruptly and shockingly when the perpetrator chose to jump to his death rather than be caught.  

(Side note: Kudos on the Hawaii Five-0 crew for the choreography of that rooftop chase and jump scene. It looked brutal and real.)

So what kind of criminal would rather die than go to prison? Not your average drug dealer, that's for sure. In this case, there was something much more alarming and nefarious going on. The young man had made a few trips abroad to the Middle East and he did not go alone.

It was about this time that Steve's internal alarm bells were ringing and he made sure to bring in Lou and his team to assist as the case was shaping up to be bigger and more deadly than anticipated. There were bomb making materials found in the dead guy's apartment.    

Worse yet, when they went to talk to his travel companion, they were greeted with machine gun fire. It was tense standoff, which ended with one shot dead, and the other apprehended. There was just a moment of nice levity when Lou wryly told Steve, "Only you would think it was lucky getting shot."  

Our hearts did stop for a second when Lou was shot, so we are thankful for bullet-proof vests.

What was found afterwards was even more chilling. This was not just a couple of disillusioned young people thinking about making a bomb, they had bomb making blueprints and materials for at least three large scale bombs.  

This was part of a bigger organization to strike at the military base, or somewhere else that would inflict a lot of military and civilian damage and casualties.

But with two of the conspirators dead, and the last remaining one unwilling to turn on the organizers of her cell, that left Five-0 scrambling to figure out who was involved.  

In a fantastic display of inter-agency cooperation, Five-0 and the FBI worked together to determine if the bomb materials and evidence found at the house were a match with anything in the FBI database from weapons and intelligence gathered in the Middle East.  

It is heart-warming and reassuring to see our law enforcement agencies working together and so efficiently in tracking terrorists through their methods and materials - no matter where in the world it was used.

That data quickly found a match to two refugees who had relocated to Hawaii, who were promptly apprehended, and surprisingly they were more cooperative in turning over their co-conspirators than the poor brain-washed house sitter, Dawn.  

(Shout-out to the perfect casting of Sasha Pietrese for this guest role. Having seen her performance as Alison on Pretty Little Liars over the years, she is utterly believable as a sociopath.)

Every conversation Steve had with Dawn was chilling as she was so far gone, reciting the dogma of her terrorist trainers.  When she swore that they would never give up and never stop fighting for their cause, Steve firmly said:

"For everyone of you, there's a thousand of me - and just like you, we're willing to die for the cause too. No matter what you do, no matter how hard you come at us, you will never change the way we think and you will never, ever change the way we live."

That is what terrorists never seem to understand: we will fight back for our country and for each other. 

So Steve, who stares into the eyes of hardened criminals every day, seemed absolutely baffled how this girl could be so impossible to reach.  In the end he simply said, "You wanted to sacrifice your life for the cause, right? Congratulations, you just did."

 In that moment, there was glimmer that Dawn finally understood that her sacrifice was not going to be a death in a blaze of glory, but a death rotting in a prison cell for the rest of her life. That was the price of the choice she made. Terrorist actions are not treated lightly.

As the episode came to a close, it was a nice touch seeing Danny and Steve go all the way to San Diego to personally deliver the news to the vet who had been injured by the bombing in Afghanistan to let him know that those responsible for the convoy bombing had been finally caught. Perhaps it will give him a moment of peace.

Then the final cap on the night was seeing the Five-0 team able to sit calmly down and enjoy a fine dinner together after all their hard work. That is after all what we fight for, the right to live peacefully and happily in our own country -- everyone safe and sound, and enjoying life again.  

Our freedom is precious and we fight for it.

Do you think Dawn will one day wake up and realize how very wrong she was?


Editor Rating: 4.8 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.7 / 5.0 (42 Votes)

This was one of the best episodes of the season. The plot and setup was really believable and sort of frightening, the action scenes were really intense, too. One odd thing. I totally love the song "Say It, Just Say It" by The Mowgli's, but it seemed kind of odd to use it during the scene when Uday Jahani is watching his son play lacrosse and Grover and a swarm of agents arrive and arrest him. Again that's one of my favorite songs, but it's so triumphant and joyous sounding, I'm not sure it fit here- would've been better at the end credits.


Why shaymae believes this was a racist episode? Any reasons for that?


a VERY racist episode :/ , tnx i used to love hawai 5 o :/


Loved this episode! I'm glad Hawaii 5-0 put in a strong women character, even if Dawn was totally evil. It was a relief to have a woman criminal who didn't cower in fear, break down and sob or act childish and flirty. Way to go, 5-0! ;-)


Really solid episode, even though it was a bit of a stretch to believe that there are home grown terrorists like that running around. Loved McGarrett's speech at the end (quoted above) - he couldn't be more right. I thought the "Dawn" character was very well played (and cute as hell) and it was great to see a lot of Grace Park in this episode. Funny that Catherine and Adam have both been absent for weeks although it appears Catherine is back next week. Steve and Kono both have unusual relationships to say the least.


I had Little Miss Surfer Girl pegged right from the off. There was something disingenuous about her reaction to the poolman's death.


Grover is great and funny and I think he fits right in as the swat leader but the absence of Danny is getting to me. I love Scott Caan but if next season he plans on being aol again I'm gonna be pissed. For me the best thing ab H5O has always been the Steve/Danno bromance.


Pretty good ep. Not enough Danny for me, but the “I love you” exchange between Danny and Steve in the hallway almost makes up for it! I hope that after this season, Danny will be back full-time. It almost feels they are setting up Grover to be Steve’s new ‘buddy’, and while I really like Grover, McDanno will always be the best part of the show for me!

Sarah silva

Steve: " I love you"
Danny: "I love you too"!
That was so great! Do we get to hear them say it to each other all the time now? I hope so! :)
This was a solid episode! Not enough Danny for my taste but that is okay.
I like that Grover wanted to beat the amount of fish that Steve got, and instead settled for the biggest fish. The ending when they were all out eating was great. Steve saying that there was something wrong with the fish and that is why Grover was able to spear it. Their banter is fun to watch.
I cried when Steve and Danny went to visit the soldier.
I too thought of the Boston Marathon bombings. It is scary to believe that people can be politically motivated to want to attack their own country.
I am glad that with such a heavy episode we got some light hearted moments which I mentioned above.
I knew Lou would be fine, he would never go into a situation without his vest.
The gun that Chin had was crazy powerful, not sure how he was unable to shoot one of the guys.
I knew that Sasha was going to be bad, I think it too is from watching her on Pretty Little Liars. I love what Steve said to Dawn.
I wish we had more than 2 episodes left this season! I really love this show.

@ Mrs alex o'loughlin

I was wondering if the vet that they visited was an actual vet or an actor.

@ Jamie Stewart

The vet was played by Bryan Anderson a veteran of the war in Iraq.

Sarah silva
@ Five-0 Fan

I wondered the same thing!