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Thread: Over Fifty? Steal! hits its mark!

  1. #1
    S03E11 "Over Fifty? Steal!" aired 50 years ago tonight (probably on US Thanksgiving).

    Hume Cronyn is Lewis Avery Filer, a man of many disguises and becomes known as the "Monopoly Thief", who steals from a jewelry wholesaler and several other establishments. Even though it's been awhile since I've read her book "Booking Hawaii Five-O", I seem to recall Karen Rhodes calling this one of the funniest Five-O episodes in the series. She isn't wrong. For more details, the shameless plug for Mr. Mike's review is here:

    Filer used to be a "darn good" (Chin Ho's words) insurance investigator but was let go due to his age. What made matters worse was that Filer's wife had a terminal heart condition and the medical bills piled up fast. This makes the main plot point/motive so ahead of its time, it's scary. How many people have had to face these issues in real-life, even today?

    McGarrett takes this case head-on and even has an admiration for Filer's moxy and cunning. This is especially true when they discover who purchased all the equipment left at the first scene: members of Five-O themselves! Although I do wonder how he was able to get Kono's thumb print.

    It takes McGarrett and the Five-O team quite a bit to track him down and nab him. Along the way, Filer uses his multiple disguises and Cronyn makes his character fit it wherever necessary. The way they finally figure out where his cache is through the use of a Hubodometer and material Che Fong sifted through that was caught in a car's air filter.

    This episode is really good and another one where it's a good place to start someone watching Five-O. I like this episode and it has my favorite chase of the whole series where Filer escapes out the back of a jewelry store with a pocketful of Tanzanite gems, new to the market at that time. He quickly pulls off the disguise of the upset store owner and becomes a member of HPD, even telling McGarrett where the thief went as they meet in the hallway!

    The chase begins outside where Danno doesn't realize who Filer is until it's much too late but he tries to catch Filer anyway. The whole sequence is hilarious in my opinion.

    It's a solid effort all the way around and shows us what the show was capable of when it was burning on all cylinders, as it were.

    Happy 50th "Over Fifty? Steal!"

  2. #2
    Decent episode, but overrated.

    I kept hearing about how it was THE BEST FIVE-O EPISODE EVER on the 1990s When I finally got a copy of it, I was so excited to watch it, thinking it would blow away episodes like "Draw Me a Killer", "I'll Kill 'Em Again", "Yesterday's Gone, and Tomorrow Won't Be Born", and the Vashon trilogy. Instead, it was good-but-not-great, in my opinion.

    Maybe I'll rewatch it now and see if I think differently, now that I am very close to "over 50" myself!

  3. #3
    Todd, it may be a bit unfair to compare this episode to Vashon or I’ll Kill ‘Em Again. It’s apples and oranges. Completely different types of episodes. On top of that you’ve got the suspense factor in those episodes which is much higher. I do believe Over Fifty is one of the best episodes and yet I can’t deny that it can’t quite compete with a masterpiece like I’ll Kill ‘Em Again or Vashon or Rest In Peace, Somebody or Hookman. Those are master classes in suspense and are just pure Five-O through and through! Over Fifty or Family Crook are not exactly typical Five-O fare. They’re the exception, not the norm. I wouldn’t introduce someone to Five-O through those episodes because they don’t represent the true “spirit” of the show, which is hard-edged stories, suspense, creepy villains, serious mood, etc. I would save those light-hearted gems for later.

    But yeah if you love Draw Me a Killer as much as you do it would be really hard for light-hearted episode like this one to blow that one out of the water. The decks were stacked against that happening. Like I said, it’s a very different type of episode.

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