Hawaii Five-O: Season 12, Episode 1

A Lion in the Streets (4 Oct. 1979)

TV Episode  |   |  Crime, Drama, Mystery
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The Hawaiian kumu mob attempts to take over a resort-workers union, to the fury of native Hawaiians who vengefully infiltrate and smash underground activities in lawless fashion. Meanwhile,... See full summary »



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Title: A Lion in the Streets (04 Oct 1979)

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Herman Wedemeyer ...
Moe Keale ...
Andy Kamoku
Johnny Mio
Elena Kamoku (as Barbara Luna)
Tony Alika
Paul Martin ...
Moki Kalii
Jahan Byrne ...
Andy Kamoku Jr.
Ed Fernandez ...
Sam Limahelu
Varoa Tiki ...
William Valentine ...
Benny (as Bill Valentine)
Don Rockwell ...
Jack Hisatake ...


The Hawaiian kumu mob attempts to take over a resort-workers union, to the fury of native Hawaiians who vengefully infiltrate and smash underground activities in lawless fashion. Meanwhile, Boston ex-cop James Carew trails a mainland gangster - who is providing aid and comfort to the kumu - to Hawaii in order to get information on the murders of his wife and child. Written by Peter Harris

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Crime | Drama | Mystery





Release Date:

4 October 1979 (USA)  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


The credit for William Smith reads "With William Smith as James Carew," since he had not picked up the nickname "Kimo" yet (at the end of the show, McGarrett says "Get used to it, it's Hawaiian for James". This was the only time in the regular season that the given name was used for the character, but on The Family Channel and in syndication in the early 2000s, this card is also used in "Woe to Wo Fat," the only other 12th season show included in the package. See more »


Det. Steve McGarrett: [to Tony Alika, who has just burst into McGarrett's office to rant about the vigilantes] I suggest you file form blah-blah-blah-blah, assault, or if you like, form blah-blah-blah-blah-blah, aggravated assault.
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User Reviews

The beginning of a very dissatisfying and unnecessary last season.
17 March 2014 | by (Bradenton, Florida) – See all my reviews

The plan was to end "Hawaii Five-O" after season 11. After all, the show had run out of story ideas and season 11 was horrible (with only a few exceptions). In fact, the show looked so dead that Five-O's second in command, Danny (James McArthur) left to look for other work. However, out of the blue, the show was renewed and Jack Lord agreed to make one last season. It's a shame, as they really should have let the show die a natural death!

The first problem is that without Danny, there was an urgent need for new members of the force. Moe Keale (a frequent villain on the show) was drafted as the first member of Five-O. Then, as you see during the course of "A Lion in the Streets", another new member (William Smith) is introduced. Later, an equally weak lady was added to the show. All this was made worse by there being no mention of Danny and his disappearance.

The second problem is that the show had run out of ideas. So, someone had the stupid notion of letting Tony Alika (Ross Martin) out on bond as a plot device--which made no sense whatsoever. During season 11, he was charged with a wide range of crimes. And, while he was out on bond for them, he ordered a murder--so he was jailed. On what planet would a judge release a guy who already tried to kill someone while he was out on bond the first time?! This plot twist was very forced and made no sense--but what do you do when you've run out of GOOD story ideas?!

The story is one the show had dealt with in the past. The mob is trying to infiltrate a local union--and the Kumu (the local Hawaiian mob) is behind it. To get their men in office, these crook resort to beatings and intimidations. However, the local Hawaiians are a hard-headed lot and decide that they should take on the Kumu! And, throughout the episode, these locals behave very stupidly--refusing to work with Five-O and trying to solve this election problem themselves.

To make things worse, the Hawaiians have an odd weapon. They are able to get one of their kahunas to put a 'kapu' on McGarrett--making it forbidden for any of the natives to work with him or talk with him! This includes Duke--who McGarrett inexplicably does not fire. Needing help, McGarrett gets an HPD cop, Truck (Kaele) to infiltrate the union. There also is a crazy ex-cop Boston cop, Carew (Smith) who you don't know on which side he is. His family was killed by mobsters and he's pressing a local union boss to tell him what he knows. Can McGarrett get this angry ex-cop on his side?

While the basic episode isn't bad, it is tough to watch all the insane macho posturing done by EVERYONE except, perhaps, McGarrett. Everyone seems to have turned off their brains and are all having, excuse my language, a peeing contest! The mob, the Hawaiians, Carew--ALL of them seem to be idiots who are trying to prove their manliness. It's really pretty annoying to watch--and often illogical. Working together, you'd think they could all solve the union problem but instead everyone is so busy posturing!! No one listens and everyone keeps flexing their muscles like a bunch of dumb 13 year-old boys!

Inexplicably, after Carew spends most of this feature-length episode working as a lone wolf, he switches to McGarrett's side. Why?! He's been working on his own to find his wife and child's murderer and continually rebuffed McGarrett--so why would he suddenly start working to help Five-O? What's next? See the show for yourself to see.

So is this any good? Well, yes...apart from the posturing and lack of Danny, it's a pretty suspenseful episode. BUT, I cannot score the thing higher because Tony Alika's presence in the show made zero sense. A mixed bag--unfortunately, after this first episode, season 12 only gets worse!

FYI--If you have seen this show, didn't you marvel at just how BAD Alika's bodyguards were?!

2 of 3 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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