Remember Pearl Harbor…
Sunday, December 7, 1941 – A mother in Manoa puts a flower in her daughter’s hair as they get ready to go to church. A gas station owner flips his sign over to say “OPEN” in Pearl City. A farmer in Kailua throws feed to his chickens. A sailor on the USS Arizona rubs his eyes in his sleep rack and wonders why he woke up so early on a Sunday morning. Little did they know that high above them, the Japanese bombers with their monotonous drone descended on the waking island from the north, east and west…their target, Battleship Row at Pearl Harbor.
If the initial metallic raps of machine gun fire didn’t rouse the sailors, the shattering jolt of torpedoes hitting broadside and bombs scoring the decks of the ships did. My grandmother told me that as a young teen, she remembered being awoken by the sound of explosions rolling across the harbor, rattling her plantation house in Waipahu. Looking outside the window, she saw the explosions in the harbor and rolls of black clouds stretching into the sky.
…through the eyes of Steve McGarrett, Sr.
But how brilliant would it be, to deepen the rebooted Hawaii Five-0’s mythos, to actually tell the tale of the last few days of Steve McGarrett, Senior’s life? Did he help Chin Ho Kelly’s grandfather solve a case? Could he have defended Kawika’s (Kala Alexander, “Ko’olauloa”) grandfather against an attack from drunken sailors? Or maybe he helped to protect Kawika’s grandmother. Did Mighty Mo tour guide Ed McKay (Robert Loggia, “Ho’apono”) have a hand in any of the elder McGarrett’s adventures…?
In narrowing the degrees of separation between the current characters, the writers have a great opportunity for strong storytelling by telling Steve McGarrett’s story in the days leading up to the attack at Pearl Harbor. Racial strains, police corruption, crime…to see all that transplanted to another era with the predecessors of our Five-0 team could potentially be a huge success. Yes, it takes a play right out of the Lost playbook with flashbacks, but the writers have unlimited potential and I do hope they pay further tribute to those who died at Pearl Harbor. They’ve already mentioned in three separate occasions that Steve McGarrett, Senior was aboard the Arizona…but what exactly did he do…?
We still Remember Pearl Harbor
In the end, more than 3000 Americans died or were injured. In Hawaii, if your family goes back at least three generations, someone in your family could tell you what they were doing that day or give you a first hand account of taking action. Because of that, we in Hawaii may have a more intimate attachment to the war rally “Remember Pearl Harbor”. Take a minute tomorrow, December 7th, to remember those who died that day.
Pearl Harbor news of interest: