Hawaii Five-O’s most 007-like episode about to hit DVD

The TVShowsonDVD.com website reports that Season 9 of Hawaii Five-O is coming out on Aug. 3.

The first episode in the set is “Nine Dragons,” the next-to-last Wo Fat story and the one episode that perhaps most resembles a James Bond movie. It includes substantial location filming in Hong Kong and a plot that featur’s Wo Fat’s most ambitious scheme and even permits actor Khigh Dhiegh to evoke an earlier role as the Chinese brainwashing expert in the original version of The Manchurian Candidate.

Here’s a sampling:

If Season 9 sells, presumably Season 10 will come out, which includes appearances by Maud Adams and Luciana Paluzzi as guest stars. And if momentum continues, season 11 has a guest appearance by former 007 George Lazenby.

Remembrances of spies past

In the Books section of the online Paste Magazine, columnist Charles McNair has just posted a lovely remembrance and appreciation of James Bond — from the perspective of an American baby boomer grown up in the shadow of the Cold War.

After a brief history of the English-language espionage novel, from Kipling through le Carre, McNair settles on Ian Fleming as a sort-of reinventor of the genre; the creator of the Secret-Agent-as-Action-Hero. This character type was reinforced by the Eon Films style; rather humorously, McNair sizes up 007 through particularly American eyes:

Bond was Johnny Carson with a shoulder holster, Brando with a British accent and impeccable manners, Elvis with an Oxford education – and no, not Oxford, Mississippi.

He makes some pithy — and perceptive — compare/contrast notes regarding the novelistic and cinematic James Bond, especially vis-à-vis this particular title.

The entire piece, Just Say Dr. No , can be enjoyed by both Bond aficionados and relative newcomers; the former for the blast-from-the-past whiff of boyhood they’ll catch from it, the latter can take it as a pretty damn good introduction to the historical and social crucible that formed our favorite spy guy.