S11E05 - “Small Potatoes” - Plot

(Prepared by Bobbi Baker)

Act One

A party takes place at night in the Ilikai Hotel with a woman (Madolyn Longfield) holding a tray and looking for Johnny (Richard Romanus). A businessman in a cowboy hat (John Stalker) stops her search temporarily. She eventually finds Johnny as he talks to several guests. There's a phone call for him as a guy gives him the address "1187 Sarabande Way" and Johnny gathers his guests to go to the address. Downstairs, they split into two cars as Johnny gives the address to a pair of drivers. As the cars pull away, a man (Danny Kamekona) walks up behind Johnny begging to go to the address but Johnny refuses. Mr. Lee has $60,000 in cash but Johnny tells him the guys aren't interested in that amount considering Lee's considerable debt. When Lee tries to force himself into Johnny's car, he tosses his briefcase into the backseat but Johnny kicks Lee out and takes out: with the money!

Johnny happily drives down the road oblivious to anything around him. He runs a red light and another car hits him, spinning him around in the intersection. Two paramedics and an HPD officer stabilize Johnny including a neck brace before he's removed from the car. The first paramedic finds the briefcase bringing it to the attention of the HPD officer who takes it into evidence. Johnny is taken to the hospital.

The next morning in McGarrett's office, he and Danno watch a segment on television McGarrett took part on a panel discussing illegal gambling in Hawaii. The moderator (Les Keiter) thanks McGarrett in the pre-recorded segment. McGarrett clicks off the TV saying the committee will never call him. He turns to the here and now with Danno telling him about an HPD case concerning Johnny Noah: "banged up his Rolls-Royce" and found $60,000 in $100 bills in the backseat. McGarrett tells him to check it out because it could be a sign of a money laundering setup. As Danno walks out, McGarrett calls the governor.

Johnny sits at his house while his girlfriend (Zohra Lampert) chuckles at him while pouring warm milk into his coffee calling him "a pitiful sight". She asks why he told them about the money and he says HPD would connect the money to Lee and "the Big One" (Seth Sakai) wouldn't like that. Gloria knows where she stands as Johnny only goes to her when he's in trouble or crashes and burns. When she comments about all the women who hang off of him, Johnny goes off with Gloria withdrawing. The phone rings making her jump: it's Lee looking for Johnny. She tells him that Johnny's just left and hangs up. In his office, Lee makes a fateful decision: he goes to the roof and jumps off, committing suicide!

Act Two

A pair of men is in Lee's office with one (Bob Sevey) telling the other Five-O is on the way with McGarrett wanting to see the physical evidence. The other man Harold (William Bryant) says McGarrett can wait until Treasury and the FBI are through with it. The first man Bob meets McGarrett at the elevator informing him it's becoming a federal case but McGarrett counters he can go to court to gain access to the physical evidence. Bob goes on saying Lee siphoned off $1.5 million from the bank and that's what has been found so far! McGarrett asks why Kendricks is on the case with Bob answering, "because he's got a big butt". Kendricks walks over giving McGarrett a bunch of lip, which McGarrett blows off telling Bob he'll see him in court. McGarrett and Bob ride the elevator down coming to an uneasy truce: Bob can't tell him anything but needs McGarrett's help. Bob hands him a list of names and phone numbers that he doesn't have the people to run down. McGarrett agrees to have the list back to him in 24 hours and Bob will owe him one. McGarrett promises a follow through on the injunction to see the evidence.

Downstairs, Danno meets up with McGarrett who shows him the list. They immediately notice Johnny Noah is right in the middle of it. McGarrett says they need to track down Johnny before driving off.

Danno tracks down on address for Johnny that includes a woman, a babysitter and a couple of kids. She's not cooperative at all barely taking Danno's card when he gives it to her to have Johnny call him when they hear from him.

In McGarrett's office Danno briefs about the condo: along with the kids, there's "at least three chicks, maybe four. None of them have jobs. They're all on welfare". Danno goes saying Johnny is a small hustler busted on petty charges such as car boosting. McGarrett tries to figure out the angle: how can Johnny afford an expensive condo? Danno says the doorman talked about traffic being light through the week but every week Johnny throws a big party. This last fact piques McGarrett interest: he guesses they could be dealing with "big-time gambling" and Johnny could be "a runner for the big boys". McGarrett would like to speak to Johnny to find out for sure as Danno says there's rumors he has lady and McGarrett thinks he knows where to look.

McGarrett goes to see Gloria as Johnny listens by the bedroom door. McGarrett knows the address because Johnny gave it when he left the hospital but Gloria tells him Johnny doesn't live there. She's not very cooperative and evasive, especially after being told of Lee's suicide. McGarrett gives her his card and asks that Johnny call him as soon as he can, it'll save a lot of trouble.

Johnny goes to see a man known as the General to give him the $60,000 left in his car because a connection has already been made between him and Lee. After much haggling and a reminder they're not in Saigon, the General turns down the money. He refuses to take it because "it's too dangerous" and reminds Johnny that if he keeps helping them, they'll help Johnny on one condition: get McGarrett out of the way.

Act Three

McGarrett talks to the governor about jurisdiction of the Lee case. McGarrett says it's not just about embezzlement from one bank, it's about where the money went: organized gambling in Honolulu and it makes it Five-O's case. The governor agrees to back McGarrett but warns him Kendricks still hasnŐt forgiven McGarrett for swooping in on "that illegal-alien case" some time before. Kendricks would like nothing more than to return the favor to McGarrett.

Gloria drives to the Moimoi Hotel where Johnny has checked in. She delivers some groceries he asked for while she tries to get him to tell her what the General said. Johnny is evasive climbing into the tub and inviting her at the same time. Johnny tells her they need to deliver McGarrett to a party and the General will do the rest. Gloria isn't keen on the idea asking Johnny why he just doesn't give up the hustling gig. She reminds him he's a small player and he's liable to "get fried first". Johnny says no way and she even likes it too, with all the risk and danger. They kiss.

In McGarrett's office, Danno briefs Lee got away with "close to $2 million" with no trace of it anywhere. McGarrett muss the trade winds picked it up and blew it away. The phone buzzes: Gloria calls to set up a meet at 2:30 p.m. in the Ala Moana parking lot with just McGarrett. He agrees telling Danno excitedly, "she wants to talk".

McGarrett meets Gloria and they drive to another location to meet Johnny who is on a public sailboat. As McGarrett meets him, another man takes photographs for proof. McGarrett asks pointedly about Lee who the doorman at Johnny's building said that wasn't the first time he saw them together. Johnny says Lee was cut off with McGarrett observing, "they waited a long time, don't you think?" McGarrett asks about the "setup" and Johnny answers it's a big operation pulling in people from all over: Miami, Las Vegas and Hong Kong. Johnny claims he doesn't know who runs it, he only receives a different address every week. He doesn't even want to give up his contact, as it is "very bad for my health". McGarrett says there was $60,000 found in his car the night of the wreck, the same amount Lee withdrew out of the bank with an "illegal transfer". McGarrett says that's the kind of information as U.S. Treasury agent would be interested in. Johnny offers McGarrett $50,000, which McGarrett refuses wanting to know who the bigger fish is. He knows Johnny wouldn't try a bribe on his own because he hid when McGarrett arrived at the house. Johnny offers him into a game and McGarrett wants it set up tonight, bringing Johnny and Gloria along. He leaves planning to meet Johnny at 10:00 p.m. After the meeting, Johnny then calls the General about bringing McGarrett to a den. The General makes another phone call.

That night, the gambling den is in full swing as Johnny, Gloria and McGarrett, who is in disguise, arrive. Johnny says hello to Pehu (Pehu Keohokalole) at the front door. Pehu informs them where everything is as Johnny approves and parts ways with McGarrett and Gloria saying he's going to track down the General. He also says he's talked them up as some big spenders from Las Vegas so they need a lot of chips to flash around. The games continue as the cashier (Thomas Nishimura) trades $500 for chips. Meanwhile, Johnny makes a phone call in a back room to make an airplane reservation on flight 106 for one person and one-way. On the gambling floor, McGarrett and Gloria try to start playing and order Perrier water for her when a guy (Mike Starr) recognizes McGarrett!

Outside, a car pulls up. As McGarrett and Gloria are about to leave, Kendricks and Bob storm in! McGarrett tries to take Gloria out another way but Kendricks stops him and recognizes him immediately. Kendricks arrests him.

Act Four

McGarrett is fingerprinted and photographed while being booked. He asks about his one phone call, which is allowed to make. He wakes Danno being very specific: don't drag the governor into it because he's being framed and call Sandy Tashimoto (Thomas Mui) to bail out Gloria, they'll need her. As McGarrett hangs up, Kendricks and Bob walk into the room: $50,000 in a briefcase was found in McGarrett's car. McGarrett says frame but Kendricks isn't buying it. Bob gives McGarrett an envelope with several photographs of his meeting with Johnny. Kendricks criticizes McGarrett's methods but McGarrett explains the connection was made from the list of names and phone numbers from Lee's office. The man behind the gambling ring is trying to set up McGarrett because he doesn't like the heat McGarrett is turning onto the ring. Another envelope Bob has includes copies of $100 bills used to pay off various officials and the serial numbers match those found in McGarrett's pocket when he was picked up at the den! Bob explains they've been working the case for six months.

A lawyer named Sid (Lewis Charles) shows up at HPD seeing Danno at the top of the stairs. They spar momentarily before Danno moves on to see McGarrett with a change of clothes. Meantime, Sid goes to see Johnny where he makes Johnny write down any questions he may have. Danno goes to see McGarrett who says, "come on, Danno. Have the decency to at least laugh". Danno then tells him he talked to Tashimoto who is getting McGarrett released on his own recognizance and is posting bail for Gloria. He also tells McGarrett Johnny wasn't picked up at the den but at the airport boarding a late flight to Chicago. McGarrett wonders if Gloria knows he tried to run on her but Danno has no idea. McGarrett wants Gloria tailed if she's released ahead of him and Danno leaves to arrange that as McGarrett changes. Meantime, Sid begins burning the pages Johnny has written on. Sid tells Johnny Gloria will "be treated with great consideration". Johnny hopes so because he only made one reservation, which Sid calls a "bad mistake".

Downstairs, Gloria is all confused talking to Tashimoto about why McGarrett would have her bailed out. Sid walks downstairs, approaching her as Tashimoto greets him but is ignored. Sid focuses on her saying Johnny has retained him to represent her. She in turn blows off Sid because she doesn't want to talk about it at the moment.

Gloria returns to her house only to be attacked by a man hiding in her kitchen. McGarrett, Danno and a pair of HPD officers move in as McGarrett shoots the man in the shoulder. They arrest him as McGarrett moves to take care of Gloria. After awhile, Gloria steadies out and she apologizes to McGarrett as he tells her the truth: Johnny was picked up at the airport trying to go to Chicago. She doesn't want to believe it but knows deep down it's true. McGarrett wants her to tell the DA the truth about the money found in his car and to do something that may be difficult.

Later, Gloria goes to visit the General where she asks to be paid for her part in the dirty plan to frame McGarrett. The General isn't worried about Johnny; he's worried about Gloria and what she might say. Johnny is set to go to trial "for attempted corruption of a public official". The General tells her he'll contact Sid and Sid will arrange for a long vacation, which she'll go on immediately. The entire time, McGarrett listens in with a tape recorder!

At the courthouse, Johnny's trial gets under way with the clerk (Gary Kau) calling for Gloria. Sid and Johnny look around but no Gloria until she finally shows at the door, which Danno opens for her. McGarrett encourages her and she takes the stand. The General tries to make a quick exit but McGarrett blocks his way, telling him he's under arrest. Kendricks and Bob walk in as Gloria is being sworn in for her testimony. The judge (Hans Strasser) asks her to state her name and address. This small potato won't be fried.

This plot summary Copyright Bobbi Baker ©2020. No reproduction of any kind without permission.

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