Wo Fat: classic vs. reboot (spoiler)

Hawaii-five-O-original

Stop reading if spoilers give you anguish. (Although the episode has been out since Nov. 7.)

So, Wo Fat 2.0 met his demise in the 100th episode of the rebooted Hawaii Five-0.

Executive producer Peter Lenkov TOLD TV GUIDE:

When I wrote the outline [for the episode], he wasn’t dead in the outline. And when I started writing the script, it really felt like a natural end to the episode. I had always envisioned following the pattern of the original show, with the last show that we ever do being the capture of Wo Fat. But I felt, when I was writing it, that that felt a little predictable for people who watch the show and know the original one…I felt like if I was going to surprise the audience at any point, this would be it.

In the rebooted show, which debuted in the fall of 2010, Wo Fat 2.0 (Mark Dacascos) was used a lot more than the original Wo Fat (Khigh Dhiegh). Rebooted Wo Fat appeared in 15 episodes in less than five full seasons. By comparison, original Wo Fat appeared 13 times in 12 full seasons of Hawaii Five-O (which was how the original show was spelled). This counts his appearance in the pilot as only one appearance (even though the pilot was later re-edited as a two-part episode). We’re counting all other two-part episodes as one appearance for for each part. The original Wo Fat didn’t appear at all in seasons 6, 10 and 11.

Rebooted Wo Fat was supposed to be mastermind *and* terrific fighter. Thus, he was lean, mean and a master of martial arts. Portly original Wo Fat was content to be a mastermind who let others do the violence and generally manipulated events. It should be noted that Wo Fat 2.0 had virtual control of Hawaii (at the end of season 1 it was revealed the governor was under his control) but nobody knew it.

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2 Responses

  1. ***SPOILER WARNING, same as in the article***

    ……

    ………

    Wow, they killed him off already? I’m surprised. I’m a few episodes behind, because I watch it On Demand, so I hadn’t realized that happened. I was pretty much expecting them to follow the same pattern as the original series and save his comeuppance for the end. I was looking forward to it, in fact. (And hoping they’d use the same episode title.) But I guess he’s right. It makes sense to not do things the same. Is this a hint that the show might be ending soon? Are its ratings down this year? I thought it had done better since its move to Fridays. If the show lives on a while, they’re going to need a new main villain in a way that the original series didn’t really require. Wo Fat has been the driving force of the narrative thus far, even when he’s not on screen.

  2. when I was growing-up in the sixties era. I was sometimes lucky to set-up late on weekend’s. and watch the original Hawaii five-o tv show back then. the character wo fat in my opinion seems to be a main nemesis for steve mcgarett. even when we hardly saw him in episodes he still played a force to reckon with for steve. however killing off the character in the re-boot leave’s nothing challenging for future episodes if theres any.

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