Tonight's episode of Hawaii Five-0 opens up, as it usually does, with a victim and a case for the Five-0 to solve. But it's probably the weirdest-looking victim we've seen this season. It's also, definitely, the best episode we've seen this season.
A man turns up mummified in the trunk of his own car, a 1969 Camaro that was stolen from the man prior to his murder. Odder, still, is the fact that the victim had undergone complete facial reconstruction surgery just prior to his death. McGarrett sums up the mystery surrounding the case and the ensuing objective thusly: "Someone was trying to hide victim’s identity. The questionis, Why?” (We don't find out till the very end.)
McGarrett and Danny handle the investigation of the victim's body, while Chin and Kono go looking -- with the help of Lori -- for the car thieves, supposing, logically, that once they find out who stole the car, they've found the person/people who murdered the guy in the trunk.
Not so fast, of course.
They track down the car thief following an undercover operation involving Lori, but although the man admits to trying to steal the '69 Camaro, he claims to have no involvement in the murder. And before long, his story on the latter officially checks out.
Meanwhile, McGarrett and Danno, struggling for leads initially -- having only been able to question the surgeon who performed the victim's operation just before his death but offered no further information of use -- find out the victim's name. Then his real name (Jimmy Sheehan)! Then his unwitting girlfriend, who explains that Sheehan was running from "his past" following a stint working on a cable ship in the Pacific, after which he told her he was going to have plastic surgery to conceal his identity.
Naturally, McGarrett and Danny rush to that ship, where they learn what really seemed to have transpired: Sheehan was a member of the witness protection program after his testimony against a Mob boss from native Boston landed a guy in jail for a long time. Sheehan was on the run, but his past did indeed catch up to him, in the form of a fellow Bostonian who, desperate to erase a serious debt to the very same Boston gang, alerted the chief henchmen -- the O'Toole brothers -- to Sheehan's whereabouts to wipe his own financial slate clean.
The Five-0 quickly go to the hotel where Sheehan's girlfriend had been staying, assuming the O'Toole brothers would "off" her next to totally clean house. They were right, but luckily they caught, and apprehended, the brothers before they could carry out their plan to kill the girlfriend. Unluckily, though? The O'Tooles didn't actually get to carry out their plan to murder Sheehan, either!
Turns out it was the last character we'd suspect (since usually there is more of a hint on this show when ultimately guilty characters pop up ever so briefly early on in the episode): the plastic surgeon. He'd botched Sheehan's operation (fatally) and, fearing the loss of his license and/or practice, shot his patient to try and disguise it as a random murder.
TOP FIVE MOMENTS FROM TONIGHT'S EPISODE
1. “Yeah, we did. I think I remember that it’s, uh, McGarrett House Rule No. 32: No TV after midnight.” –Danny to McGarrett, exchanging one of their many great lines, as Danny is temporarily crashing on McGarrett's couch ... and encroaching on his Zen.
2. Danny, McGarrett and Lori walk into Max’s office to find him feverishly plugging away at his piano. McGarrett and Danny repeatedly summon Max, to no avail. Lori calls his name, and he promptly responds to her. It’s a scene made funnier, in hindsight, by the fact that Max ignores the two guys pretty much all episode long.
3. Lori goes undercover at a muscle-car-owner hangout looking for the car thief. He quickly comes over, flirts, takes her car for a spin and thinks he’s turned the table on Lori when his masked cohort demands, at gunpoint, that she get out of the car. Moments later, the guys realize they’re, in fact, the ones in a trap, when the car becomes undrivable and inescapable – and they’re picked up by a closely trailing Kono and Chin.
4. When McGarrett and Danny go looking for Sheehan's roommate on the ship, Billy Murphy, they spot him in the distance with a knife at another man’s throat. Danny quickly catches up to him – there aren’t too many places left to go in the middle of the Pacific Ocean – and we see McGarrett essentially tight-roping the peak of a crane to catch Murphy from behind. Which he does.
5. The weekly climactic scene: Five-0 arrive at the hotel where they know the O’Toole brothers are holding Suzy against her will. McGarrett breaks the door down, and Chin shoots one of the O’Tooles – but it’s Kono, from afar, who stealthily kills the other brother, who had a gun at Suzy’s head and a countdown going.