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Hawaii Five-O: Season 3

4.8 out of 5 stars 158 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Filmed entirely on location in Hawaii, the show followed Jack Lord as he played Steve McGarrett, head of an elite state police unit investigating "organized crime, murder, assassination attempts, foreign agents, felonies of every type." James MacArthur played his second-in-command Danny ("Danno") Williams, with local actors Kam Fong, Zulu, Al Harrington, and Herman Wedemeyer, among others, playing members of the Five-O team. Guest stars included Helen Hayes, Ricardo Montalban, Leslie Nielsen, Herbert Lom, Hume Cronyn among others. McGarrett's nemesis is the evil Wo Fat — "a Red Chinese agent in charge of the entire Pacific Asiatic theatre.

The sky is blue, the sea is a brilliant turquoise, the surf is up, the scenery is lush and gorgeous, and Steve McGarrett's hair is as stiff as the breeze blowing in off the Pacific. In other words, all is right with the world as Hawaii Five-O: The Third Season arrives in a six-disc, 24-episode (including a pair of two-parters) box set. McGarrett, of course, is the main man in the islands' crack, four-man police unit; played by Jack Lord, he's the guy memorably described by the New York Times as "beyond cool but still so square he could have been Lawrence Welk’s cop brother-in-law." Not much has changed in his universe as the series moves into a new decade (these episodes aired in 1970 and '71). McGarrett is still the humorless embodiment of moral rectitude; imperious, often sarcastic (especially when dealing with the fools from other law enforcement agencies who dare challenge his authority), he's one of those guys whose moral superiority is unquestioned, especially by him. Steadfast cohorts Danno (James McArthur), Kono (Zulu), and Chin Ho (Kam Fong) are still on hand, as is the usual assortment of bad guys, most of them risibly stereotypical--including arch-nemesis Wo Fat (Khigh Dhiegh), a kind of cut-rate Bond villain who speaks elaborately formal English as he plots to help Red China overthrow all that is good and righteous in the free world. And as in the first two seasons, Hawaii Five-O's style is notable primarily for the lack of it, especially in the stiff acting (with the exception of a few guest stars--notably Hume Cronyn, who's terrific in the season's most amusing and clever episode, "Over 50? Steal"), lukewarm action sequences, and appalling hair (if bad cuts and silly sideburns were a crime, the streets would be empty and the prisons full). But then, that is precisely the show's charm.

Also as in past seasons, the Five-O crew takes on crimes both common (murder, robbery, extortion, kidnapping) and not so much; in "Reunion," some World War II vets are convinced they've come across the Japanese officer who tortured them during the war, while "The Last Eden" features with eco-terrorism and "And Time to Die" deals with China's nuclear secrets. In the end, regardless of the problem, it's McGarrett and company's dogged police work that solves it. Meanwhile, the music remains the series' hippest element by far; while Nancy Wilson might not be a particularly convincing junkie in "Trouble in Mind," her renditions of the title song, "Stormy Monday," and other tunes are absolutely first-rate. Bonus features are again limited to brief, previous-week promos for each episode. --Sam Graham

Special Features

  • All 24 episodes from the 1970-71 season on six discs
  • Trailers
  • Some episodes may be edited from their original network versions

Product Details

  • Actors: Jack Lord, James MacArthur, Kam Fong, Zulu, William Smith
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Box set, Color, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono), Spanish (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)
  • Subtitles: Portuguese, Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 6
  • Rated:
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Paramount
  • DVD Release Date: January 22, 2008
  • Run Time: 1215 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (158 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #17,586 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Hawaii Five-O: Season 3" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By J. Herman on January 22, 2008
Format: DVD
Five-0 fans, cop show fans in general, and fans of classic television will thoroughly enjoy HAWAII FIVE-0: The Third Season, which I just received on DVD.
This is the season where the show really hit its stride. Virtually every episode in this season is a winner: solid, suspense-filled, action-packed mysteries with gorgeous scenery, great musical scores, a supremely talented cast and a nice group of guest stars, including Martin Sheen, John Vernon, Vera Miles, Pernell Roberts, Anne Archer, Eric Braeden, Gary Collins, Diana Muldaur, Hume Cronyn, Monte Markham, Sorrell Booke, Tim O' Connor and many more, including the return of Khigh Dhiegh as arch-villain Wo Fat, who appears in not 1 but 2 thrilling espionage adventures.

These episodes appear to be complete based on their 50-minute or more run times, despite CBS DVD's now-standard disclaimer that says "some episodes may be edited from the original network versions". No music appears to be altered, either.
Every single episode from season 3 is included, and as a bonus the episodic promos are featured for most of them. THese promos have not been shown in syndication and probably haven't been seen since their inclusion during the original network run.
The episodes appear to all be digitally remastered as with the previous seasons and have never looked more vibrant, along with animated menus, 6 discs each with 4 episodes and disc art, and a nice summary of each episode on the 3 slim cases housing the discs.
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Format: DVD
Nothing lasts 12 years without having something going for it. In the case of Hawaii Five-O, it easy to dismiss it as a typically television crime drama that got lucky by finding its audience and keeping it. The same could be said for Law and Order. Except, in television years, luck usually runs out after two or three years. Gimmicks get old, the formula is figured out, and sharks are jumped so often they don't even complain.

But shows that last five years, much less 12, have to have something besides luck, gimmicks, and great scheduling. Hawaii Five-O had a number of things going for it. First of all, let's be honest. The setting was, and still is so lush and exotic that it is easily intoxicating. Hawaii is beautiful, and most people either live there or want to live there. Filming on location has always been a blessing when it's been done, and probably no more so than on this series.

Next, Jack Lord, playing Five-O chief Steve McGarrett, was one of a long line of no-nonsense law enforcement figures. The strength, integrity, and dedication of these kinds of characters cannot be overstated, and these characters will always have lots of fans rooting them on, not unlike Law and Order's Jack McCoy.

Finally, watching shows like this is always a treat because you see so many stars that were either big stars enjoying a working Hawaiian vacation, or lots of up and coming stars before they got their big break. Hawaii Five-O was a natural draw for both categories, and it's fun to watch them and remember when.

It's also fun to remember when you could look forward to hearing one of the best and most recognizable theme songs in television history. Not a small thing when you add it with the other factors. Hawaii Five-O had a lot going for it then, and it has a lot going for it now.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
One of McGarrett's trademark quotes - besides "Book 'em, Danno!" - is "Go over it with a fine tooth comb," in reference to how he wants his crack team of investigators to go to work. Well, the folks at CBS/Paramount really did that with the classic series, producing a compilation that not only looks better than it did almost three decades ago but sounds crystal clear. One can only imagine how brilliant the show would look in high definition 'cause it sparkles in this release of the show's third season.

And what a season it is!!!

"Hawaii 5-0" had its share of standard cops and robbers episodes but it also had some that were a cut above the norm, making commentary on the environment ("Paniolo" and "The Last Eden"), false imprisonment ("The Double Wall" and "Dear Enemy"), drug addiction ("Trouble in Mind"), and the horrors of war ("Force of Waves" and "To Kill or Be Killed").

Jack Lord continues his fine performance as the always-in-charge Steve McGarrett, even being allowed to show his softer side as the character reminisces about a lovelost with the prime suspect being his ex-girlfriend. Even "Danno" (James MacArthur) has a romantic interest, although it ends tragically ("Beautiful Screamer"). Kam Fong ("Chin Ho") and Zulu ("Kono") are not just "Hawaiian window dressing"; they are integral to each story and are perfect in their supporting roles.

The guest star roster reads like a who's who of character actors of the time, many repeat performers. Simon Oakland, Andrew Duggan, Harry Guardino, Ed Flanders, and Albert Paulsen are just a few examples of the fine talent that made its way, more than once, into the exciting stories of this landmark show.
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