Hawaii Five-0 Season 9 Episode 11 Review: Hala i ke ala o'i'ole mai (Gone on the Road from which There Is No Returning)

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You can't go wrong with a good caper.

And it was even better when the goal was justice for Joe on Hawaii Five-0 Season 9 Episode 11.

Then there was that entirely disposable case of the week so that the rest of the cast could make an appearance. 

Hunting Down a Killer - Tall - Hawaii Five-0 Season 9 Episode 11

So let's talk about what the episode was really about: having a bunch of guest stars, new and old. And there's absolutely nothing wrong with that.

If a series is returning from holiday hiatus, why not come back with a bang?

Or at least a reasonable amount of suspense with a smattering of gunfire.

Related: Hawaii Five-0 Season 9 Episode 10 Review: Pio ke kukui, po'ele ka hale (When the Light Goes Out, the House is Dark)

Did it make much sense? Not really. But did that matter? Not really.

This episode was inevitable after the murders of much of McGarrett's former SEAL team, especially his father figure Joe White, on Hawaii Five-0 Season 9 Episode 10.

It seemed that Steve has spent the last month (a refreshing use of actual calendar time) beating information out of Omar Hassan's lawyer, the middleman in this contract, on Joe's Montana ranch. And Catherine has returned in his time of need to help out with that.

Unexpected Visitor - Hawaii Five-0 Season 9 Episode 11

Danny showed up to bring McGarrett back to Hawaii and to serve as the angel on his shoulder. I guess his unease at the lawyer's interrogation illustrated the difference between police and military intelligence gathering.

But that was just buildup to the gathering of the all-star team preparing for an invasion of Laos. Why not Laos? It's as mysterious a place as any for a terrorist leader's hideout.

Junior was a natural pick for the team as the next generation of SEAL. Steve knew he could follow orders and handle himself in a firefight.

Related: Watch Hawaii Five-0 Online: Season 9 Episode 10

It was good to have the return of Gutch for the first time since Hawaii Five-0 Season 3 Episode 23. He may be older and graying, but you can't go wrong with David Keith to portray a macho character.

And if you need an advance man in a foreign country, why not call Harry Langford, international man of mystery? Although it seemed more recent, Harry last visited on Hawaii Five-0 Season 8 Episode 21,

Finally, to pilot the helicopter the team was using, there was Lucia Bama, Frank's daughter, because, I dunno, Jimmy Buffett was on tour and they needed another body for their Magnificent Seven. It would have been nice if Lucia had been fleshed out more, but her connection to Joe was basically nonexistent.

Out of Retirement - Hawaii Five-0 Season 9 Episode 11

Despite having connections to at least two international spy agencies, the squad needed a convoluted scheme at a casino to discover Hassan's high-rise lair. 

Then, when Hassan's henchmen capture Catherine and Danny, Harry made a call and the Laotian police flood the parking garage, because, what, he bought enough drinks to have banked some favors?

The whole caper felt laughably pre-ordained, with remarkably few hitches.

Related: CBS Cheat Sheet

Then, rather than have the violence continue for another generation, McGarrett spared Hassan's life (hopefully taking him into custody in the process), in exchange for Greer's location.

Capturing a well-known terrorist must be what allowed McGarrett and Catherine to invade Chinese airspace on a vigilante mission to confront Greer. 

She betrayed McGarrett and his team because, as I understood it, she felt slighted because he didn't choose to join the CIA and become part of a secret-agent couple with her, conducting illicit operations around the globe. Girl, he's just not that into you.

Gathering a Team - Hawaii Five-0 Season 9 Episode 11

It was a good thing that Catherine killed her so she wouldn't escape from custody yet again. Greer's ineffective storyline is thankfully closed.

Now back to Steve and Catherine. Must she continue to be the one that got away? Or might they have a future? Wade was certainly hinting that McGarrett should settle down. Maybe they come back together on the series' final episode in the not-too-distant future.

At least we found out yet another reason why Joe was so important to McGarrett: he was the one who pushed Steve to pursue Catherine. 

Related: Get CBS All Access via Amazon Channels for Hit Shows, Exclusive Originals & Live TV

I still think the emotional payoff wasn't sufficient for killing off Joe. In the end, how was Steve changed by losing his mentor?

Meanwhile, back on Oahu, there was a nothing little case with a convenient murderer who appeared out of nowhere, the highlight of which was the debate over social media. That's 10 minutes of our viewing life that we'll never get back. But I suppose you can't just discard half of your cast for an entire episode.

For follow Joe's history on the show, watch Hawaii Five-0 online.

Which returning character did you enjoy the most? Was Joe's death worthwhile? Was there a purpose for the storage-locker case?

Comment below.

Hala i ke ala o'i'ole mai (Gone on the Road from which There Is No Returning) Review

Editor Rating: 4.25 / 5.0
  • 4.3 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.3 / 5.0 (30 Votes)

Dale McGarrigle is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.

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Hawaii Five-0 Season 9 Episode 11 Quotes

Danny: It doesn't seem like he's going to talk.
McGarrett: That's OK. I'm not done with him yet.

McGarrett: You didn't need to come out here.
Danny: I did, because that's what family does.