Scott Caan may be absent every third episode, but Danny Williams was at the heart of the pair of episodes leading into the holiday hiatus.
Danny may have been unconscious for a large part of Hawaii Five-0 Season 8 Episode 10, but that didn't stop him from being the center of attention.
That's because Danny got shot in the chest by...well, we still don't know. As a result, he spent much of the episode battling for his life. And you want a real Christmas miracle? Danny survived despite having to have McGarrett as his doctor.
Who woulda thunk McGarrett had "field medic: among his skill set?
While McGarrett, assisted by Junior as his scrub nurse, performed delicate procedures on Danny, others around him were smashing things. I think that's called irony.
Tani's way of attracting others to their plight was to take down part of a wall, then flooding the bathroom, so somebody would investigate when water dripped below. That was after her battering a glass wall with a chair didn't yield any results.
Then, after the bomb squad's plan to take down a wall opposite the bomb-obstructed door resulted in a small hole, Grover enlarged it with a sledgehammer.
You could just shake your head at all the improbabilities that were part and parcel of this episode. But those were just the framing sequence for what was important: Danny's fantasies of the years to come.
There was Grace's wedding to Will, Adam's daughter with Kono, Charlie's graduation from the Police Academy, and more. In Danny's mind, Tani and Junior marry and become the heart of the future Five-0. Then there's Danny and Steve's popular Italian restaurant.
But the best part of all was Danny and McGarrett doing their best Grumpy Old Men impression. Even decades in the future, they're still bickering about everything. At least they're arguing in rockers instead of cars.
Danny had the visions of his future flashing before his eyes every time his condition went south. But in the end, he was only somewhat worse for wear.
Who the gunman was is yet another storyline left hanging. All the team found was that photo with the words "He Deserved to Die."
It joins such storylines as the folk-tale killer and the fugitive hacker that need closure.
Or is this season a tribute to the planned Italian restaurant? Throw all these storylines against the wall and see what sticks.
Then, while he was home recovering from his recent medical ordeals, Danny was at home with Charlie on Hawaii Five-0 Season 8 Episode 11.
What an excellent opportunity to concoct a Christmas story built upon a recent, holiday-themed FIve-0 case.
It was also a perfect chance for Danny to serve as narrator for a case with which he wasn't involved since he got sidelined.
I love how he chose a stuffed donkey to represent McGarrett. I'm sure that's exactly how Danny thinks of him.
And honestly, isn't Bad Santas Go to Hawaii a concept we've all been waiting to see?
The most enjoyable part was Charlie serving as the voice of the viewer as he shot holes in Danny's narrative. He asked all the pertinent questions trying to iron out the pesky details.
Such as with so many entrances to any mall, how did Five-0 and a handful of deputies manage to herd all the shoppers through their checkpoint? No one snuck the back door?
It also didn't take Charlie long to identify the protagonist in his father's story as his Uncle Steve. That also simplified the storytelling for Danny.
The best additions to the cast were the five real-life veterans playing, well, veterans who were on an outing with Junior. Using their various skills, they played a crucial role in solving the case.
Of course, there was Adam worked into another episode, because, as he explained to Josey, "I'm just in the wrong place at the wrong time." I still don't remember how he showed up at the mall.
Get a ride home from the airport, get caught up in a bank robbery. Need information from a Swiss banker, call Adam. Perhaps the writers might refine a role for Adam beyond "bored househusband with time on his hands." Some more formalized would be good.
Any holiday season wouldn't be complete without McGarrett's Christmas bash. It was a good chance to see everyone in street clothes, and Dog the Bounty Hunter petting Eddie the Dog was a nice touch.
And finally, Junior got his badge. Now, during their holiday hiatus, he finishes off his coursework, and he'll soon be a full-fledged member of Five-0. At least he got there before Eddie.
To catch up during the hiatus, watch Hawaii Five-0 online.
Which of Danny's futures is most likely to come true? Did Junior get his badge too soon? Which storyline would you like to see wrapped up first? Comment below.
Dale McGarrigle is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.