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Thread: Ben's disappearance from the main credits

  1. #1
    Five-O Home Page Author Mr. Mike's Avatar
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    Someone e-mailed me recently with an interesting question about something I've never thought about before:

    In the opening credits of S07E10, "A Gun for McGarrett," right after the image of Kam Fong in the opening credits is shown, there is the sight of a fireman with an HFD helmet I’ve never seen in any other opening. Maybe it’s a goof?

    I looked into this, and this is my detailed reply:

    Hi, this is not a goof. The three seconds or so with the fireman replaces the shot of Ben jumping over the fence, which used to appear before Kam Fong.

    If you examine this chart -- http://fiveohomepage.com/season7.pdf -- you will see the shows that Al Harrington was in, or not.

    The show you referenced was "A Gun for McGarrett," but the one right before that in broadcast order, "How to Steal a Masterpiece," also has no Ben, and it also has the fireman (this fireman is from the episode where McGarrett is extracted from his car after it is sabotaged and he is trapped inside, "The 90 Second War" (http://fiveohomepage.com/5-0log4.htm#88)).

    The show before "Masterpiece" is "The Two-Faced Corpse," where you can see Ben (no fireman); the show after "Gun for McGarrett," "Welcome to Our Branch Office," has Ben and there is no fireman as well.

    The last show of the season has Ben and it also doesn't have the fireman. If you look at the PDF chart in the link above, you will see that this show ("6,000 Deadly Tickets") was filmed quite early in the season, but it was the last one shown, perhaps to give the impression that Al Harrington was still with the show.

    If you jump ahead to season 8, you will notice that this fireman is still around, because Al Harrington was no longer there. I only checked the first couple of shows, but I assume it is for all the shows.

    With the 9th season, Herman Wedemeyer was added to the cast and the main credits as Duke. Kam Fong is still in the credits, but right after this is a very brief shot of some colored lights (this does NOT come from the fireman clip as far as I can determine, it probably came from one of the typical H50 whip pans (see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Whip_pan) and then the credit for Duke. Wedemeyer's appearance is around three seconds, just like the length of Ben jumping over the fence and the length of the fireman clip.

  2. #2
    I remember first noticing that fireman, and I knew he was replacing something they cut out.

    Does anyone know why Al Harrington was cut out of the show so abruptly in Season 7?

    BTW Mike, I noticed in your PDF that Ben disappeared in the middle of the season in production order, but there was one show in the middle while he was still around ("And the Horse Jumped Over the Moon") where he wasn't in the show or the credits. Maybe they redid the credits on that one in post-production, after they had simply not written him into that episode, and therefore decided not to credit him, either?

    This kinda makes it look like Al's departure was on the bitter side, as they gave him the minimum credits appearances possible.

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