We start out with previouslies to remind us about Jessie, that Noriko was killed, and that Tani thinks Adam killed her. Then we move into a very serious meeting where the Yakuza bosses are relieving the Yakuza banker guy that Adam trusted of all of his duties. He protests, but they accuse him of framing Adam. He should have stayed neutral! His defense is that he was protecting their interests, since Adam was withdrawing money meant to repay his dad's debt to them. Nope, the bosses aren't having that and give him a choice of either Yakuza justice or Five-0 justice. Adam comes out and cuffs him (and in that moment, I sort of wished Adam was bad again. He just does a character with a lot of gray areas so well!)
Cut to a beach park where a guy is recording a drug deal. He's moving in to make a citizen's arrest, but the dealer pulls a gun on him. They fight and the dealer runs away. The hooded vigilante takes the backpack the dealer left and looks to see what's inside, all the while recording what he finds, when he gets hit by a car and another gunman confronts him and shoots him. Whoa.
The next day, the victim is ID'd as Gene Wahale, who billed himself as the Night Sentinel, a citizen who went around trying to make the area safer even though he wasn't trained for it. The team is speculating about what really happened since the dealer 's bag still had cash and drugs in it and wasn't taken and we see Jerry contributing to a makeshift memorial for Gene. Apparently, Jerry met the Night Sentinel once while he was on patrol. Gene made a difference in the community and people loved him, but he probably had some enemies. Back at the Chatting Table they gather to watch some of Night Sentinels online videos. He made thirty-seven citizen's arrests from vandalism to armed robbery and some of the comments on the videos had threats on them in the form of emojis. Half the island's criminals wanted Gene dead.
They pull in one of the commenters whose brother was arrested by Night Sentinel and take him to the Blue Room of Doom. After being mocked for his lack of spelling skills, the dude breaks and says he's glad the freak's dead, but he didn't do it! He doesn't want to become his bro's cellmate and he has an alibi---last night he was at a gentleman's club and dropped 2Gs. His alibi checks out and none of the other sixteen guys they've looked into are promising leads. Tani and Adam head over to Gene's apartment and they talk about how it was a good start to Adam's career in Five-0 by bringing in the Yakuza banker on a murder charge. He thanks her for believing in him. (That storyline was wrapped up a lot quicker than I thought, but okay.)
They go into the apartment and it's been trashed. Jerry comes in and looks at the bookcase while Tani notices that the computer and hard drive are gone. Whoever stole the computer probably wanted the raw footage from the videos Gene took. Adam finds a pic of Gene with his parents who were killed in a home invasion robbery when he was ten. (Sad!) Gene left behind first edition Martian Chronicles, an Xbox, and a statue of Ultra Man. (I have no idea who Ultra Man is.)
Back at the Chatting Table they get access to his online storage and there are videos of some other guy called the Guardian talking smack about Night Sentinel. No one really took the Guardian seriously, but Night Sentinel obviously did since he kept a file on him. Those videos were moneymakers with ad space and whatnot, and maybe the island wasn't big enough to support two hometown heroes. Oh, and Gene got a threatening, voice distorted, message so they're going to try to unscramble it while they look for the Guardian.
In the car, Danny mentions that you'd have to be a real specific psycho to throw on tights to fight crime, but Steve gets the appeal, he wanted to be Batman. Danno liked Superman because he could fly, was bulletproof, and could shoot lasers out of his eyes. Batman was just a guy. Steve disagrees since Batman had to work hard to get in peak physical condition. Danny thinks Batman isn't special because he just inherited money and bought Batmobiles, but he grew up and moved on to different things, so whatever. Steve figured out what Danny's superpower is, it's irritating people to death. Haha!
They end up catching the Guardian in his "act" where he's foiling a robbery, but it's all a setup. None of his takedowns are real. The supposed robber was also jumping off a bridge and getting mugged in some other Guardian videos. The Guardian guy says he can explain, but then runs away, so Steve gets out a bean bag cannon and calmly shoots him. Can Superman do that?
They get the Guardian in the Blue Room of Doom and accuse him of sending that threatening distorted message after Gene found out his videos were fakes, but the Guardian denies it and says he didn't know Gene was on to him and never threatened to kill the guy! Should they play the highlight reel of the Guardian talking smack about the Night Sentinel? But the Guardian says it's like entertainment, and Gene just took it too seriously. He also mentions that he heard Night Sentinel was liquidating his comic book collection so maybe the guy was desperate for cash. Hmmm...
Gene had an insurance policy for his comic book collection that was worth thirty grand and since it wasn't at his apartment, he must have unloaded it. The team also finds out that Gene had no major debt or financial issues, so it was weird that he was offloading his collection. We'll think on that for a moment because the stolen car that hit Gene was found in a very remote area! Since the driver had to get back somehow, the team is going to reach out to rideshare and taxi services to see if someone picked him up. Meanwhile, Lou and Jerry are heading out to the comic book store that pays fair value for titles. Apparently Lou's son is a collector so he's familiar with the stores that sell. They talk to store owner Sharon and she admits that she bought the collection, but it was because Gene was producing his own Night Sentinel comic and needed the cash for that. Jerry is looking through the first issue and realizes that it's based on Gene's life and may be a way to figure out why he was killed.
Jerry reads through them all and sees the overlap from real life where Gene witnessed his parents murder and how his father was an investigative reporter for Channel 10 when he was killed. HPD didn't think the murder was anything more than a robbery (oh poor dumb HPD) but Gene believed there was more to the death and maybe that's what the threatening phone call is about. In the comic, the hero had a hidden room and Jerry remembers the same sort of setup in Gene's apartment. They go back and pull the Iliad from the bookcase, but nothing happens, so they just physically move the bookshelf and find the hidden room. Inside is all the investigative stuff Gene had collected from his parents' murders including videos, pictures and files. He was investigating the same conspiracy as his father and it might have gotten them both killed.
The dad was looking into a bunch of different shady things, but zeroed in on an HPD captain and a forensics analyst falsifying evidence on a bunch of cases. The captain had a rock solid reputation, though, and the forensics analyst died in the 90s with a spotless record. His daughter is still alive, so they go to talk to her and she tells them that Gene asked to meet her a couple of weeks ago to discuss his father coming to speak to her dad before he died. Gene's dad recorded the confession of a scheme to boost conviction rates and the daughter doesn't know if he implicated anyone else. Gene's dad left with the tape and a week later, he was dead. That's what got him killed and the murderers made it look like a robbery to get the tape back.
They bring in the captain who remembers Gene's father's murder well and how he found a boy hiding under the bed. Gene was convinced it was a conspiracy and thought the captain was involved, but the captain denies it, felt like Gene never got over what happened and needed someone to blame. Steve tells him that they've uncovered information indicating that the forensic analyst was falsifying evidence to boost conviction rates. The lawyer with the captain gets all huffy and ends the interview by advising Steve that any other discussion will take place in a more formal setting. No more fishing expeditions for them!
Adam found a taxi service that picked up a fare right where killer's car was ditched and dropped the person off in some garden apartments in Waikiki. Steve brings Eddie to the apartment and uses the headrest from the stolen vehicle to get a scent. Eddie sniffs around and then stops at a door so they bust in. There's a shootout and when the guy is reloading, the team moves in. They end up shooting the guy who falls off a ledge and is killed. His name was Darrel Wentz, 27, and he had multiple felony charges, did a stint in Halawa for assault with a deadly weapon. But the team quickly realizes that since Darrel is only twenty-seven he would have been a kid when Gene's dad was killed. Sad faces all around since Darrel was just a hired gun and now their best lead is dead. Oddly, though, Darrel got out of prison waaaaayyy early and guess who his lawyer was? The same lawyer that came in with the captain, Michael Pope. So what's a fancy lawyer like him doing repping a two bit hitman? Hmmm...
Steve and Danny go to see lawyer. They confront him with what they know, that Gene was on to the right conspiracy, but he had the wrong guy since the captain is honest. It was Pope working with the forensic analysis guy, not the captain. Pope denies it at first, but they point out that Pope was the prosecuting attorney on all the cases, anxious to make a big name for himself, so he padded his conviction rate and put a lot of innocent people in jail. Gene's dad figured it out, so he had him killed, and then when Gene figured it out, he was killed, too. Pope is all, well, you can't prove it, but they pull out the unscrambled threatening message and it's Pope's voice! They go to arrest him, but he runs to the roof and then we go into comic book mode where Steve grabs the helicopter struts and launches himself into the cockpit as the helo goes into a death spiral. McG makes a pinpoint landing on a busy street and it ends with a "Book 'em Danno." (Haven't heard that in a while!)
Then we're back to real life and we find out that the helicopter chase didn't really happen, Pope just gave up and let himself be arrested, but Jerry adds that it wasn't the climactic ending the story deserved. Duke and the captain come in and tell Steve that they're gong to make sure everyone Pope wrongfully convicted is exonerated and HPD is reopening all the cases Pope and the forensics guy worked on. (As if they aren't overworked enough already!) But, thanks to Trevor and Gene a lot of people are going to get their lives back, too bad they aren't there to see it. Charlie asks Danny if he and Uncle Steve are heroes since they're in a comic book and Danny says yes. Charlie gets a hug from Uncle Steve and Danny says the comic book is for his kid not him, but then they look over at all the adults reading comic books. There's nothing wrong with fun for old times' sake, right? And they both agree.
So, a little different with the comic book angle. Did you watch? What did you think?