The latest episode was a thriller with the return of Dr. Gray and Alicia battling it out. It is quite interesting to read the reviews of this episode this week from Linda and Manu. Mind games can sure bring out interesting insight. This episode was also a great one to gif, so feast your eyes on those as you read including some really great Alex moments at the end.
“There’s one thing I’ve learned hunting monsters; You can’t outrun them.”
Well, for the most part, in the last seven years, we’ve hardly ever had to outrun the monsters. One of the hallmarks of a procedural cop show is that, invariably, by the end of the hour, the good guys always get their man. There have been precious few who have managed to evade our team. WoFat, Gabriel and Michelle Shioma spring to mind. But, in the end, both WoFat and Gabriel met their end because of Steve and Five-0.
Gabriel never had the cunning of WoFat, of course. WoFat was enigmatic and mysterious while Gabriel was basically just a street thug who somehow managed to rise to some power. I loved Gabriel and the run for the money he gave Five-0 but there really was no comparison to the brilliance that was WoFat. Michelle Shioma? Ah well, there’s a puzzle. She’s still in the wind somewhere.
And then there is Dr. Madison Gray. She’s not an enigma at all. There is no mystery or puzzle about her. No, what she is, is Machiavellian with a level of cunning and unscrupulousness we’ve rarely seen in our villains. A total oxymoron; a serial killer who never kills. A master manipulator who gets others to do the killing for her. She’s a fascinating character and in the hands of Elisabeth Rohm truly chilling.
Maybe it has something to do with Elisabeth’s beautiful blue eyes which she’s able to turn from complete voids of emotion one moment, to theatrical (as faux-amnesiac Lauren Parker), to cunning viciousness the next. Elisabeth has played this part perfectly since the moment we first met Dr. Gray.
When Dr. Gray walked into HPD, playing herself off as Lauren Parker, confused amnesiac from Wisconsin, no one was fooled, especially Steve. The two of them sitting across the table in the interrogation room was riveting. Elisabeth was phenomenal in this scene, as was Alex. She was so good, I was seriously thinking we really did have a “Sybil” thing going on here. That her psychotic mind had finally snapped and she really believed she was Lauren. She even managed to fool not only the polygraph but the psychiatrist who was sent in later to evaluate her.
But Steve knew better. I loved the background music in that scene. Mixed in with the heart thumping baseline which emphasized the deep emotion Steve was feeling at seeing her again, it had a tingling, itchy kind of cadence which had his “Spidey Sense” written in every note. Steve was fully on guard and not buying a moment of her theatrics. This was one of those scenes we all love. Where not only did Alex have some great lines and emotions to play, he was also able to convey pages and pages of dialog with just his facial expressions. And did you see the way he literally almost leaped out of his skin when she attempted to touch him? To say she had him not only on guard but on edge is an understatement. Steve is never like that. Oh yes, Dr. Gray got under his skin in a huge way.
I loved the psychological game Dr. Gray came back to play on Alicia Brown. I like Alicia but I’m not quite sure about her. I mean, yes, she’s been through a lot. The murder of her daughter, the breakup of her marriage and the psychological toll that took on her, she’s been living with for years. Being dragged back into it all when the Chess piece Killer dumped a body in her bed didn’t do her mental state a bit of good. Add to that being stabbed and thrown into a blow hole to drown, is it any wonder she virtually went into hiding for four months?
So, really, you have to wonder about her emotional state. We’ve seen her be obsessive, compulsive and reckless. We’ve seen her completely unhinged. We’ve seen that being an ex-FBI profiler who’d dedicated her life to putting serial killers away and who’s guilt over her daughter’s death has unhinged Alicia just enough to make her very vulnerable to the likes of Dr. Gray. She might have done well to remember Dr. Gray’s words of four months ago, “Never play psych games with a shrink.” Especially one as psychotic as Dr. Gray.
It’s also very telling that Dr. Gray didn’t just go after Alicia like she had so many others. She didn’t do it covertly, with Five-0 only finding out about it after the fact and having to investigate an already committed murder. No, she came right out in the open because, while Alicia was her main quarry, Dr. Gray was out for Steve as well. Danny was 100% right when he said that Dr. Gray “missed” Steve. Remember, when she was leaving all those chess pieces behind, Steve was left a knight, not a pawn.
The game is no fun without a gifted opponent. Dr. Gray views Steve as a worthy adversary. An adversary to pit wits against and come out victorious. He escaped her clutches the last time they met so now, she’s looking forward achieving her objective and doing it right under his nose to prove who’s the better of them. Checkmate!
She methodically laid out all the clues Steve would need. She wanted him to figure it out so she could relish the win even more. She could have passed herself off as Lauren from anywhere but she told HPD she was from Wisconsin deliberately to not only pinpoint where she’d been the last four months but also to where serial killer Edward Sears is locked up. The man Alicia blames for orchestrating the murder of her daughter Sienna. There’s video of Dr. Gray visiting Sears, no attempt to hide the fact that she was there numerous times to see him. Then there is the blood that was all over “Lauren” when she showed up at HPD. Sienna’s blood. It was all set up beautifully.
All in an effort to turn Alicia into a murderer and to do it right under Steve’s nose. Dr. Gray is a junkie, you see. Getting high with the thrill of having murderers kill other murderers. But like all junkies, it’s getting harder to reach that high. She needs more. Time to up the ante by turning someone who’s been the good guy, who’s been hunting the killers into a killer herself. The ultimate high for a junky hooked on murder.
Alicia will be the ultimate pawn, by convincing her the man who killed her daughter is in that cabin in Wisconsin. And through her incredible ability to use psychological manipulation, she convinces Alicia to kill him. The trick isn’t to outrun the monsters Alicia. It’s to make sure, that in the course of the chase, you don’t become one yourself.
So, we ended this episode on a bit of a cliffhanger. Well, a minuscule one at least. Dr. Gray returns to Alicia’s house three days later and lays the ultimate control bomb on her. Hands her the gun and basically says the only to ensure her safety and that of her daughter, the only way to end the game is to kill her.
Who fired the shot we heard just as the screen faded to black? Did Alicia shoot Dr. Gray? She told the 911 operator she wanted to report a murder so she had every intention, in that moment, to kill her. Could it have been Sienna, who was in her room sleeping? Could she have woken up, heard the conversation in the kitchen and taken matters into her own hands? I’m sure Alicia would have filled her in on who Dr. Gray is and what she had done. Or did Steve come back? He’d only walked out of her house moments before.
But Alicia had bolt-locked the door behind him and I didn’t hear any crash before the shot that would have indicated Steve breaking the door in. But then again, this is H50. It could very well be that Steve did break down the door and we’ll hear/see it next week or maybe he comes in through another door, like those French doors we saw earlier in the episode. After all, Dr. Gray managed to get in the house without coming through the front door.
I actually like that last idea the best. I love the Dr. Gray character but, now that I’m looking at the arc more clearly, I think it’s time to put an end to that story line. I know that Claire Forlani is listed as a guest star in next weeks episode so whatever happened will more than likely be resolved early on in 7.18, perhaps even before the wave. If Steve did come back and kill Dr. Gray, that would mean that Alicia and Sienna can go on with their happy reunion and their lives without a murder hanging over either of their heads. Yeah, I’m ready to move on to a new story arc and perhaps a new major villain now.
I have to admit, that Alicia finding Sienna alive in that cabin was a major stretch. I mean, it’s been four years. I would think that a FBI trained agent would have figured out a way to escape in all that time. And was she injured at all? All that blood on “Lauren” and I didn’t see a scratch on Sienna. And another thing? Dr. Gray sent Alicia into the cabin to kill her daughter’s murderer. Did Dr. Gray know Sienna was alive? Personally, I don’t think so. I think she was following her usual M.O. of sending someone in to kill a killer. But then again, this is Madison Gray we’re talking about. Could be she knew exactly what Alicia would find in there and was banking on having that ace in the hole to hold over Alicia for the future.
I also really enjoyed the way Danny was able to be a small voice of reason for Steve in this episode. I’ve always loved it when the two of them have gone off together into one of the offices, where one or the other attempts to speak reason to the other. All of Danny’s logic about Alicia was 100% on point. And even though Steve was right in his assessment of why Alicia would break Dr. Gray out of HPD, Danny was right to voice every one of his concerns. Just because Steve thinks he knows Alicia doesn’t mean that everything Danny proposed isn’t a possibility.
So, who else knew exactly what Edward Sears was going to do with that pen the moment Steve slid it to him? I mean, duh! Didn’t Gabriel and Coughlin teach them anything? The moment he slid that piece of paper back to Steve and I saw he hadn’t returned the pen I closed my eyes. Watching that pen go into Coughlin’s eye bothered me for days. I knew what was coming and really didn’t want to see it happen again.
I usually have very little beef with the great writers on this show but I’d like to find the one who tweeted out that ridiculous shipper poll and whip him/her with a wet noodle. I mean, come on guys. This was a nice stand-alone episode, full of psychological suspense, which very nicely tied up a fun arc but had absolutely nothing to do with Steve’s love life. Why introduce that element right in the middle of the episode? It was completely unnecessary.
Steve and Alicia have a lot in common. They’ve both lost people extremely close to them. They’ve both seen previous relationships fail. They’ve both lived and worked under intense situations and were/are extremely driven to achieve justice. They had a life and death experience together which they were lucky to survive. But, nice dinner and cute conversation aside, that’s not a basis for a relationship other than friendship and understanding. Love affairs which begin under intense circumstances never last and I have never seen any indication whatsoever that these two feel anything for each other than a bond of shared experiences and friendship.
I really enjoyed the one short bit if fun this episode had. The grand opening of Flippa’s new shrimp truck. It was so much fun for Danny to finally…..finally….get to meet one of his heroes. I mean, how many football players have visited Hawaii that Danny’s missed out on meeting? The opportunity to meet fellow “Jersey Boy” Max Weinberg (drummer for Danny’s beloved Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band) was a thrill for Danny and I really got a kick out of it as well, especially when Danny told Max about sneaking in to see the band play when he was a kid. I think we’ve all done something like that in our youth! LOL Max, of course, is no stranger to H50. He’s played gun shop owner “Norm” for several seasons. It was fun to see him play himself in this episode and finally give Danny a chance to fanboy a bit.
The only thing funnier than that was when Kamekona got a look at Flippa’s new truck! Oh my God… Kame was not prepared to see Flippa’s face on the truck instead of his own. I know, Kame told Flippa that the truck would be his, but considering that every single new enterprise Kame has opened has had the exact same logo of his face with some different type of hat, Flippa shouldn’t be too surprised that he’d expect the new truck to be a Kamekona shrimp truck and not a Flippa shrimp truck. The shrimp is gonna fly between these two for sure! LOL
It was also really wonderful to see Nahale again even if it was extremely quick. I’m wondering how old Nahale is now. The way Steve said “what’s up young quarterback…good to see ya man, you look good” makes it sound as if Steve hasn’t seen him in a while. Could it be that Nahale is a freshman in college now, maybe living on campus at UH and that’s why Steve hasn’t seen him lately? And Steve is proud that he’s made the football team. I know Nahale is supposed to be in the next couple of episodes so hopefully, we’ll get to see more of him and they’ll explain what’s going on in his life a bit more and why Steve hasn’t seen him for a bit.
Well, that’s it for this week. I really enjoyed this episode a lot but of course, I always do. I can’t believe next week we’ll be seeing the 18th episode of the season and they’re already filming 7.21 on the island as we speak. I’m always so torn at this time of the year. Excited to see what’s in store for the home stretch and dreading the fact we’re so close to the end. Ah well, best to just keep enjoying the rides as it comes.
Emanuela (Manu) Pari
I hope you had a very good week and your weekend started in the best of ways. Well, it’s always goo to start the weekend with a new episode of our favourite show, especially when it promises to be an exciting one.
Episode 7.17 saw the return of two characters that were part of an exciting story arc at the beginning of the season, Doctor Madison Gray, A.K.A a psychotic and yet very smart serial killer, and Alicia Brown, retired F.B.I. agent that was the target of DR. Gray’s twisted mind game but managed to survive thanks to our heroic Commander McGarrett.
Last time we heard of her Dr. Gray had managed to escape from Hawaii, after commissioning the murder of several people, plus McGarrett’s blue truck and relocate to the mainland.
The new episode opens with the woman we know as Madison Gray walking into the Honolulu Police Head Quarters with her hands covered in blood and a suspicious case of amnesia about the events of the previous 24 hours.
Our Duke was among the officers that “welcomed” her and didn’t waste any time from calling Five 0 to deal with this unexpected situation.
In the meantime our task force was enjoying the opening of Kamekona’s third shrimp truck at Oahu’s North Shore.
It was good to see Jerry there and Nahele too, and finding out that Steve’s “adoptive son” is keeping out of trouble and working with Flippa. Flippa that was making Kamekona’s proud, as, quoting him “a good man does while a great man delegates” until he revealed the logo on the truck, apparently Flippa’s truck rather than Kame’s.
Guest of the great opening was Max Weinberg as himself (we had seen him previously in the show playing the owner of a gun shop in town) which created a little “fanboy excitement” in Danno, which for a change didn’t miss out and even got to take a “Jersey boys” picture together with one of his idols, courtesy of Steve.
Unfortunately the team had to get back to reality soon enough, having to deal with the sudden appearance of Dr. Gray.
I thought Elisabeth Rohm’s acting in the opening scenes of the episode was just brilliant. She was very convincing in my opinion as Lauren Parker, tourist from Wisconsin who had no idea on whom Madison Gray, or Steve McGarrett were. Her confusion and desperation were really believable.
Not so much to the Commander though, who didn’t believe her story for a minute, not even when a psychiatrist confirmed that she might be suffering with dissociated identity disorder or when she passed the polygraph test.
It was very meaningful when Steve jumped back in his seat the very moment Lauren/Madison tried to touch him, he might be a tough cookie but the trauma and pain the woman put him through in the past, while stabbing him in the back and trying to kill him by drowning, still weights a lot on him.
And he was right not to trust Madison, as, a Danny suggested she came back because she wanted something from Steve. A chess player without a worthy adversary becomes soon a bored one right?
The situation becomes even more complicated when Kono reveals that the blood found on Lauren’s hands is a close match (not, close but not perfect) with Alicia Brown’s.
Steve and Lou quickly rush to Alicia’s residence, whom according to McGarrett has been in isolation since the events that lead that to Dr. Gray’s escape from Hawaii.
They find her safe and sound, gardening.
Alicia agrees with Danny that Madison is not done “playing” with her and McGarrett and demands to see her, also providing the idea that Dr. Gray might have collected her blood when she attacked her the previous time.
Lauren’s first slip to reveal that she is in fact Madison Gray is when she recognises Alicia’s as “the woman that tried to kill her”, a detail that she had apparently previously forgotten. She even points out that she had cut her assailant on the forearm, perfectly knowing that Alicia had a similar injury after falling over while hiking the day before.
If at this point we were all still confused about who was lying to whom, the cold, calculated smile that Madison gives Alicia before she exits the room lets us know that there is no Lauren Parker, but only Madison Gray playing her twisted games.
A worried Steve suggests to assign a protective detail to Alicia, which she declines saying that she can take care of herself so the Commander ends up offering his service as a body guard.
We have then a cosy scene at Alicia’s place where she finds out that Steve is also a good cook and where the two reveal to each other that they like their solitude. They have a couple of “funny” moments when Steve announces that he is staying for the night and at Alicia’s amused reaction he rushes to explain that he meant on the couch. There is also a mention of Danno, when Alicia says that she is not very sociable and tends to bring people’s morale down and Steve says he is used to it having to work with Danny for eight hours a day. The full scene was OK, but i’ll get back to my opinion about the Alicia/Steve topic later.
At this point we have the “silly action of the day” when Alicia sneaks out on Steve and goes to the Police Station to talk to Madison.
And here my doubts start, number one: how did she manage to persuade the lady cop to let her interview the prisoner? She has no badge, no Official authority to do so and when she was previously there with McGarrett probably that officer wasn’t even on shift. One of those Five 0 mysteries that will stay unsolved.
Anyways, Alicia tries to force Madison to reveal her game with a blade to her throat but Madison persuades her that she has a very important secret to tell her and consequently Alicia breaks her out of prison to find out what that is.
I have to admit that I thought the secret was that Madison knew where Alicia’s daughter was buried and who the killer was.
While Steve continues in his blind defence of Alicia’s actions Danny remind him that he is not being objective and Alicia either snapped or is just out for revenge.
And here we have my second perplexity: the team finds out that Alicia and Madison were at the Airport and have left the island. I ask myself how? Is security really so crappy in Honolulu airport that a wanted serial killer can freely go through it not just once but twice now? I have been there and the security is actually pretty tight so I seriously find it scarcely believable.
In the mean time Steve and Chin find out that connection between Madison and Wisconsin could be Edward Sears, the serial killer connected with Alicia’s daughter’s murder. They go to interrogate him, but clearly they have never seen “Silence of the lambs” as they pass him pen and paper to write an information and he ends up sticking the pen in his own throat. Luckily though Steve finds some letters hidden in his mattress, fan letters from a Benton Jones, which from what he writes seems to be the actual killer of Sienna Brown.
In the mean time Alicia and Madison have already arrived at the residence of Benton Jones, Alicia goes in on her own while Madison “surprisingly” takes off and leaves her.
In the isolated house Alicia (and us) finds the real twist of the episode, not the body of her daughter but the girl well and alive, even though visibly shocked. Benton Jones suddenly shows up too, shortly followed by McGarrett that shoots him and saves the day as typical of his persona 🙂
When Steve Alicia and Sienna come out of the house we see a very similar glance from Alicia to Steve to the one she gave him after saving her life the previous time, the lady sees him as her hero, that much is evident.
The following scene is once again Alicia and Steve goofing about talking about a possible dinner (including Sienna) and hugging each other in a quite tender way.
I was convinced that would be the end but then Dr. Gray suddenly appears again (doubt number three: how on Earth did she manage to come back to Hawaii again????) trying to persuade Alicia to shoot her. While Alicia is on the phone with the police, saying that she wishes to report a murder we hear a shot.
Could be Alicia killing Madison, or it could be Sienna that suddenly woke up and decided to take matters in her hands or it could be Steve that for whatever reason decided to come back and shoot Dr. Gray to save Alicia.
I guess we’ll find out next week.
Apart from a few details that leave me perplexed all together an ejoyable episode.
And now let me express my feelings about the Alicia/Steve situation. I think that if the writers want to go in the direction of making them into a couple they should probably get on with it already. I don’t see all those sparks, I just see Alicia and Steve as good friends but that’s just my opinion.
But if that’s the case it would be gracious of them to let Steve break up with Lynn first, as we have seen in last week’s episode that they are still very much a couple. That’s not what I would like to see, as i really like Lynn and Steve together but I don’t enjoy waiting for the worst to happen so I wish the show would go in either one direction or another, not in three different ones (yes, I’m including also Cath in Steve’s complicated love life).
Another thing that i don’t particularly like is how the official twitter page for Five 0 seems to find funny to create division and drama in the fandom. Why post polls in favour of either Alicia or Lynn? Or very recently Cath or Lynn? Dos it really help the success of the show? I doubt it.
Granted that as fans we should not take this kind of things too seriously, and believe me I don’t, but I still find them rather annoying.
One last thing, doubt number four: should Alicia not be in trouble for freeing a serial killer just to find out about an alleged secret? Given the results there might be attenuating circumstances but nothing at all? Nope, I don’t buy it.
Anyways, lets move on and look forward to next week’s show, another exciting return, the infamous missing uranium.