S11E19 - “A Very Personal Matter” - Plot

(Prepared by Bobbi Baker)


Act One

An ambulance arrives at the Emergency room of a hospital with a nurse (Jo Anne Morgan) meeting the crew and patient as they wheel in. The patient is a young man, victim of an overdose. At the Ilikai Hotel, a man (Cameron Mitchell) takes a phone call in the hotel security office and rushes off squealing out of the parking lot. Meanwhile, in the ER, the nurse tries to wake Tom as he's examined. The doctors try their best but all they know is they are dealing with pills: the ambulance said there was an empty bottle and no label. The man from the Ilikai arrives at the hospital and makes his way into the area where Tom is being worked on. The doctor (Krash Kealoha) asks him who he is with the man answering he is Tom's father. The nurse asks Mr. Riordan if Tom has been acting strange lately but Riordan hasn't seen Tom much but the last time he did, he tells her Tom seemed to be in a trance or hypnotized. The doctor wants to pump his stomach and work to bring Tom's blood pressure up until it can stabilize hoping to counteract whatever is in his system already. Hospital staff rolls Tom away to begin treatment as Riordan asks the doctor if he'll make it but the doctor says they won't know for several hours.

A telex comes into Five-O with McGarrett watching it in the evening. The phone rings: it's Riordan wanting McGarrett's help, as they knew one another in the Navy. He tells McGarrett what's happened and that he's at Tom's apartment. He found something claiming it could mean murder if Tom dies. McGarrett agrees asking for the address.

At Tom's apartment, McGarrett goes in with Riordan to find a pigsty. Riordan doesn't get it but McGarrett has seen it all and isn't surprised. McGarrett asks straight up if they were getting along after Riordan says he hadn't seen him in over a month. Riordan finally admits they weren't really getting along and they discuss "the generation gap" being larger than the Pacific itself. Riordan spent 30 years in the Navy, so he's used to structure and discipline but anything outside of that: he's lost. Riordan laments about his wife Mary being passed on as she could always talk to Tom. As Riordan talks about Tom, McGarrett looks through some pawn slips as Tom sold stuff for his next fix. Riordan is about to lose it when McGarrett shows him the pawn slips. McGarrett has nothing but empathy for what Riordan is suffering through but gets back on track: what did Riordan find? Riordan pulls out a prescription slip for 300 milligrams of methaqualone with a count of 100 and dated '1/17/79'. The prescribing physician is Harvey Danworth, M.D. (Fritz Weaver). Riordan calls Dr. Danworth "one of those pill-pushing doctors" and says Dr. Danworth is guilty of murder if Tom dies. McGarrett tells him not make any "emotional judgments" and they'll investigate why the prescription was written. Riordan doesn't want to hear it because the script is dated yesterday! A neighbor walks in telling Riordan the hospital is calling.

McGarrett and Riordan go to the hospital just before midnight to find Tom has slipped into a coma. The doctor tells them they found needle marks on his arm with Riordan more confused than ever with McGarrett and the doctor explaining some addicts crush the pills and inject them like heroin to make the high happen faster and be more intense. When Riordan asks if Tom ever woke up, the doctor says yes, Tom thought he was talking to his dad. The doctor conveys his message: "Father, I'm sorry". McGarrett knows he's dealing with an emotional case with a friend right in the middle of it.

The next morning, McGarrett visits Walter (George Groves) who is another friend in the District Attorney's office. He leads McGarrett to a patio area where Dr. Whitewood (Connie Sawyer) with the State Medical Control Board waits for them at Walter's insistence. McGarrett explains the situation with Tom and Dr. Whitewood has heard of Dr. Danworth but he's only been on the islands a couple of years. She goes on to say he has been known to be a bit unorthodox but nothing out of line. McGarrett shows Walter the prescription slip wondering why Dr. Danworth would prescribe more drugs to an addict in "terrible physical condition" and wants to know where the DA stands on this situation. Walter, unfortunately, is not much help because unless a statute has been broken, the DA has no position. This doesn't sit well with McGarrett in the least. Walter explains drug prescriptions, or lack thereof, are matters of professional judgment and in the prevue of the Medical Review Board that can recommend criminal charges if they feel it necessary. When McGarrett brings up the Medical Board's record on censuring people, Dr. Whitewood equates McGarrett's request to someone committing suicide by driving off a cliff in a car and arresting the person who sold the driver the car. McGarrett retorts, "but if you sell a mentally disturbed man a gun, you shouldn't be surprised when he goes out and uses it to kill someone. Hmm?"

McGarrett goes to see Dr. Danworth next and it's not pleasant. McGarrett wants to know what Tom's physical condition was and if his behavior was unusual. Dr. Danworth wants to know why McGarrett is asking with McGarrett telling him he's conducting an "official investigation". Dr. Danworth tells McGarrett Tom was underweight, tense, confused and couldn't sleep so he prescribed something to "calm him down". Dr. Danworth claims he tried to send Tom to a psychiatrist but Tom refused to go. McGarrett drops the hammer telling Dr. Danworth Tom is in the hospital in a coma due to an overdose of Quaaludes. Dr. Danworth is shocked asking when it happened with McGarrett answering him it occurred not long after he saw Dr. Danworth. Dr. Danworth becomes defensive going toe-to-toe with McGarrett about how he practices medicine. Dr. Danworth's nurse interrupts saying McGarrett has a phone call: it's Danno, who took a call from the hospital for him. He tells McGarrett Tom has died. McGarrett hangs up sharing the news with Dr. Danworth who demands he "get out". McGarrett tells him he's gone but he will be back. As McGarrett leaves, Dr. Danworth looks at a picture of young woman on his desk.

Act Two

Dr. Danworth testifies in a hearing about Tom's death telling the judge (Tom Fujiwara) about Tom having difficulty dealing with daily life. Tom was always looking for a "magic ingredient" but Dr. Danworth tried to tell him no such thing existed. In the audience is Five-O and Riordan who creates an outburst not believing a word Dr. Danworth is saying especially when Dr. Danworth says he thought he was truly making progress. Dr. Danworth isn't sure if he didn't misjudge the situation with Danno commenting, "he sounds like he means it," but McGarrett is still skeptical. The judge concludes the hearing by saying Dr. Danworth may have used better judgment but in the end, Tom would have acquired the drugs elsewhere and he is solely responsible for taking his own life. Riordan is ticked off by the findings and jumps two rows to go after Dr. Danworth! It takes McGarrett, Danno and Duke along with another guy to pull Riordan and Dr. Danworth apart as Riordan yells the whole time. After the chaos, McGarrett tells people to clear the room as he asks Dr. Danworth if he's all right but the politeness ends there. "I hope you feel exonerated". Dr. Danworth walks out quickly as Danno physically hangs on to Riordan to make sure nothing else happens. McGarrett tells Riordan the case isn't close and they'll keep looking into it, Riordan backs off, for now. McGarrett then turns to Duke to make sure Riordan gets home.

McGarrett and Danno walk out of the courtroom as McGarrett tells Danno about his history with Riordan, their years old friendship and he can't recall when Riordan was so "distraught". He explains Riordan is a security chief at "a local hotel" but when Danno asks what they can do, McGarrett has tunnel vision. He wants Danno to find everything he can on Dr. Danworth and how many "dangerous" prescriptions are around town with his name on them. When Danno balks, McGarrett says, "he's been cleared. But not by me".

In a park, an instructor (Simone Griffeth) leads an aerobic class and encourages her students at the end. She tells them she'll see them "next Saturday" as McGarrett waves at her off to the side. When Gerry over, McGarrett says hi and asks her if she's thought of his proposal. Gerry says she's willing to do it because drugs do a lot of damage even after he warns her she could wind up dead in a cane field. She answers if she can help even one person, the risk would be worth it. McGarrett tells her she has the job.

Dr. Danworth finishes a round of golf and heads to the clubhouse with the others in his group so they can "pay up". At the clubhouse, a man (Don Pomes) stops Dr. Danworth to talk to him but Dr. Danworth is not interested, "Look, I have to work with you at the clinic. And I want you to stop bothering me". The man fires back saying it's his club too and they make their money the same way. Dr. Danworth retorts, "I don't write prescriptions like I was some kind of movie star handing out autographs". The other doctor says he never had anyone die of an overdose but Dr. Danworth wonders how he would know since he doesn't really know who they are!

McGarrett arrives at the Ilikai immediately finding Riordan to talk. They walk discussing the hearing and Riordan's actions: "you assaulted and threatened a man, which is very serious". They keep talking about Riordan's and Tom's lack of a relationship, the fact he wouldn't see a psychiatrist, Riordan's attitude and Tom "had to grow up". Riordan says if it weren't for Dr. Danworth, Tom would have come around to his way of thinking. McGarrett tells Riordan to back off and let him handle Dr. Danworth, albeit unofficially, because "I consider this a very personal matter".

Gerry hangs out in the parking lot of the golf course watching Dr. Danworth leave. She follows him.

At Five-O, McGarrett asks Danno if he's found anything. Danno briefs there's nothing from the mainland yet but Dr. Danworth has been licensed in Hawaii for a little over two years. He's also involved in a lot of charity work: "one day a week at the Westside Clinic. Donates his services to the senior citizens center downtown". Danno goes on that Dr. Danworth drives a '78 Mercury and lives in a nice house in Kahala but it's not extravagant. McGarrett then asks about the prescriptions with Danno answering Duke is working on it but he's about halfway through and there's nothing out of the ordinary. McGarrett still suspects the man of pushing pills and says it should show up in the records. He picks up the phone to have Luana (Laura Sode) to call the governor.

Gerry arrives at a boat harbor finding Dr. Danworth on his boat. She approaches him for drugs but he refuses telling her it is unethical and possibly illegal to prescribe drugs to someone who doesn't need them. He then tells her to take a couple of aspirin and to see him in the Westside Clinic.

The next day, Gerry waits at Westside Clinic to see Dr. Danworth when a young man (Alan Austin) walks in just after 9:00 a.m. He sits by Gerry starting a conversation with her introducing himself as Kona Emery. He tells her if she ever has trouble getting an appointment, to find him on Sandy Beach because everyone there knows him and he can get whatever she needs. The nurse calls Gerry in to see Dr. Danworth where he asks her about her friends as he takes her blood pressure. She describes her friends as tense, nervous and uptight like her and then there are others who are depressed and can't get it together. When Dr. Danworth tells her to send them in to him but Gerry offers to be a "branch office" taking their prescriptions for them.

Later, Dr. Danworth takes matters into his own hands confronting McGarrett at Five-O! He angrily reports what occurred with Gerry with Danno asking, "you thought we should know about it?" He yells at them they already know about her because they sent her while McGarrett tries to play dumb but Dr. Danworth isn't buying it! What's worse, he recorded Gerry's proposal! He even made McGarrett a copy and leaves it with him. Dr. Danworth tells them he's going to have his rights and makes the point that the coroner cleared him. Once Dr. Danworth leaves, Danno says he doesn't sound guilty leaving McGarrett to question his judgment.

Act Three

McGarrett and Gerry walk in a park where he thanks her for trying and she tells him about Emery. McGarrett wonders if Dr. Danworth is his connection, which she think he is. However, McGarrett puts the brakes on the operation while they check on Emery to see if he has a rap sheet. Gerry, who has another class, says she'll wait to hear from him before she makes another move.

McGarrett is out on the lanai when Danno and Duke walk in reporting Dr. Danworth isn't motivated by money. He is the member of a golf club and owns a boat but he's making payments "just like anybody else". McGarrett noticed a picture of a girl on Dr. Danworth's desk and wonders if he has any children. Danno says there are none in Hawaii but they're still awaiting word from the mainland, made slower because they've made unofficial inquiries. McGarrett thanks them for their discretion in handling the case and tells Duke to "check out a character named Kona Emery". The phone rings and Danno answers it: Walter calls with news that Dr. Danworth has complained to the medical board about McGarrett harassing him. Dr. Danworth even told them about the attempted set up. Walter warns McGarrett the law is on Dr. Danworth's side and can have McGarrett arrested. McGarrett cuts off the call telling Danno and Duke there's something not setting right and leaves to have yet another talk with Dr. Danworth. Danno and Duke watch helplessly knowing that's not such a good idea.

McGarrett arrives at the Westside Clinic where he asks Dr. Danworth is there is someplace they can talk. Dr. Danworth isn't happy seeing McGarrett at all but allows him into the examination room where they can have some privacy. In the room, McGarrett wants to "appeal" to Dr. Danworth saying, "young people's lives are being ruined by doctors who abuse their right to prescribe drugs" and telling Dr. Danworth maybe he was wrong. However, the conversation degenerates into an argument due to Dr. Danworth explains sometimes the book has to be thrown out to do what's best for the patient. McGarrett wants names of doctors who may be overprescribing drugs but Dr. Danworth claims not to have any. Besides, he doesn't want to ruin someone's career like McGarrett is trying to ruin his. McGarrett wants to resolve the misunderstanding and maybe even save a life but Dr. Danworth is stoic, focusing on the awaiting patients.

At Five-O, Danno is on the phone with McGarrett briefing about Emery, he has a rap sheet but it's all small: "shoplifting. Three pot busts. No felonies". McGarrett verifies he's not a dangerous criminal and tells Danno to call Gerry to tell her it's a go.

Gerry walks on Sandy Beach finding Emery walking out of the surf. She's looking him up, telling him they're in the same business: "making money". Emery says he needs to make a phone call and he'll meet her in Kapiolani Park at 10:00 a.m. She agrees walking away to her spot on the beach.

Riordan shows up at McGarrett's office while he's on the phone. Riordan isn't happy because nothing has happened for three days. He also points out there is a planned yachting trip to Maui that will be led by Dr. Danworth and he wonders how many pills he's been pushing to afford the boat. McGarrett is nearing his end explaining to Riordan there is an angle being worked currently and Dr. Danworth is deep in debt, even owing on his car. McGarrett tells Riordan they're doing everything they can and to some people, more than they should. Riordan is still despondent saying it's not enough. McGarrett tries to reassure Riordan who agrees to give McGarrett more time.

Dr. Danworth arrives at the marina with Riordan watching him from his parked car. As Dr. Danworth goes to his boat, Riordan gets out of his car, fully armed!

Act Four

Riordan confronts Dr. Danworth with the newspaper article showing he was cleared of wrongdoing. However, Riordan still holds Dr. Danworth responsible no matter what anyone else says. Dr. Danworth doesn't take Riordan's guilt trip: he tells Riordan that Tom was already on drugs because of him and refused to see a psychiatrist because Tom felt it would make him appear weak to his father. Dr. Danworth insists he was trying to help Tom but Riordan doesn't believe him. Riordan pulls his gun and takes Dr. Danworth off his boat.

Gerry shows up at the War Natatorium, finding Emery as he sits closer to the water. She wants to "start small": a couple of hundred of reds and rainbows each plus 300 downers. Emery is shocked about what she's asking: it equates to over 35 prescription slips. He asks if she has the money and they make the exchange as McGarrett watches and slowly moves in. When Emery sees him, he takes off with a few plainclothes HPD officers chasing Emery. He begins running along the beach but doesn't get far as Danno tackles him into the surf! Danno brings him out with both soaked. Once everything calms down, Gerry hands McGarrett the slips: they're from Dr. Savio who talked to Dr. Danworth at the golf club. McGarrett recognizes the name as the other doctor at the Westside Clinic. He tells Danno to book Emery and to have HPD pick up Dr. Savio. They all take off and as McGarrett and Gerry walk, an officer intercepts them with information on Dr. Danworth.

McGarrett arrives at Dr. Danworth's office where Riordan lays out some drugs for Dr. Danworth to take a bit of his own medicine! McGarrett enters in time to stop the madness telling Riordan that Dr. Danworth lost a daughter to the same garbage: drug abuse and overdose! McGarrett diffuses the tension as Riordan finally realizes he pushed Tom into the downward spiral. In the end, it's about forgiveness as McGarrett throws the vial of crushed pills into the trash.

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


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