Aloha spirit

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - TV - – ByMelodyL.Goh

HAWAII has al­ways been as­so­ci­ated with words like ex­otic, heav­enly, par­adise and many oth­ers. And why not? It is a truly a beau­ti­ful place, not just in ge­o­graph­i­cal terms, but in its peo­ple and cul­ture too.

Made up of eight main is­lands – the biggest be­ing Hawaii, or the “Big Is­land” – and sur­rounded by hun­dreds of other tiny is­lands, Hawaii is the 50th state to join the United States in 1959. This is one of the main rea­sons why the TV show Hawaii Five-0 is so called.

“When they first started work on the show it was orig­i­nally called The Man, but ul­ti­mately, they wanted it to show­case the state of Hawaii so they changed the ti­tle,” ex­plained Hawaii Five-0 ex­ec­u­tive pro­ducer Peter Lenkov in an in­ter­view in Honolulu last week.

With Hawaii Five-0’ s clas­sic edit­ing style of show­ing de­lec­ta­ble im­ages of the Oahu and its beau­ti­ful peo­ple in be­tween scenes, it is hard not to fan­ta­sise about be­ing there.

“ Hawaii Five-0 is a post­card for the state. The orig­i­nal show did so much for tourism here, so there’s po­ten­tial for this one to also boost the state’s econ­omy,” said Daniel Dae Kim, re­fer­ring to the eco­nomic slump that Hawaii has been ex­pe­ri­enc­ing for the past two years.

The Aloha Spirit, an im­por­tant sen­ti­ment in Hawai­ian life where “each per­son must think and emote good feel­ings to oth­ers” (as ex­plained in Hawaii’s state law), is clearly por­trayed in each episode of the se­ries.

How­ever, apart from Kim who has been liv­ing in Honolulu for about eight years now, not all the main ac­tors have fully adapted to the is­land life­style.

“I miss the chaos and the stress of the city life, I miss Ital­ian food. I think Hawaii is a won­der­ful place to live in, don’t get me wrong, but I grew up in Los An­ge­les and have lived in New York, so it’s a pretty big change for me,” said Scott Caan.

Mean­while, Aus­tralian Alex O’Lough­lin found it rather easy to adapt to his new life in Honolulu. “Hawai­ians are like Aus­tralians, so it wasn’t that dif­fi­cult for me. But I do miss my fam­ily,” he said.

Still, be­ing home­sick is noth­ing com­pared to what Grace Park ex­pe­ri­enced. “The first month was ex­tremely stress­ful. I couldn’t get credit for a car! I kept telling them that I paid all my bills on time back home and that I pay taxes but the bank still wouldn’t give me a loan. So, I had to call my fa­ther,” she re­vealed.

Park also said that al­though it is great to see peo­ple be­ing so kind to one an­other on the is­land, she does tend to be wary of their sin­cer­ity some­times.

“It’s a small place, you know, and it is hard to gauge peo­ple’s sin­cer­ity. Some­times I won­der if some­body’s be­ing nice to me be­cause they know who I am or sim­ply be­cause they’re ac­tu­ally nice. You just never know,” she said.

Cast mem­bers (from left) Scott Caan, Daniel Dae Kim, Alex O’Lough­lin and Grace Park work­ing on the Aloha Spirit, which is por­trayed in each episode of the se­ries.

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