Two men drive near Diamond Head to check out a property they are looking to purchase. One man (John Boley Nordlum) gets out of the car while the driver (Sam Elliott) grabs a gun and rope from the glove box and shoots the first man in the back!
HPD responds with the coroner's wagon to where the man was left. Danno takes stock of the man's wallet: $87 in cash, credit cards and driver's license. Chin and Nick (Daniel Kamekona) are on scene too with Nick identifying the man as Howard Crystal. He was a successful businessman" owning Island Thrifty Stores. Nick tells them a kid found Howard and guesses he's been dead three to four hours because he's still warm. Nick says it looks like a professional hit with Chin adding it appears to be a syndicate hit. Nick figured McGarrett would want to check it out.
In McGarrett's office, Danno briefs Howard was "Mr. Clean himself" for at least the last five years. McGarrett gives Jenny a task so he can join the conversation around the table with the team and Che (Harry Endo). Chin says they verified he was a partner in the Island Thrifty retail stores dealing with imports and job lots. Danno says the IRS and Customs audited the company about a year before and they came out clean. McGarrett puts Danno to contact the mainland to find everything little fact on Howard. Che has no prints and no tire tracks but they're pretty sure Howard was killed where he was found. The gun is "a cheap" foreign made revolver with the silencer being homemade and the serial numbers are filed off. McGarrett plans to speak to Howard's widow (Jessica Walter) even though Nick did the notification. Danno broke the news to his business partner Jack Houston. McGarrett doesn't want anything released to the press just yet and sends Chin and Ben to talk to Abe Kemper (Abe Vigoda) because he would know if the syndicate would be interested in Howard. The phone buzzes: Jenny (Peggy Ryan) announces Paul Hamilton (Alan Fudge) who walks in as the team walks out. He asks McGarrett to work through them, the federal government, to solve Howard's murder. Paul claims it ties into something they're working on but won't go into details and would rather not put a request through normal channels. McGarrett refuses to turn the case over to the FBI and tells Paul they should have lunch every so often.
McGarrett goes to visit Howard's widow with the maid leading him to the main living room where she makes him wait. Mrs. Crystal walks out to meet McGarrett but she's not overly broken up about her husband's death, she claims shock and denial. As they talk, she pours herself a drink and tells McGarrett she didn't much about Howard's life before Hawaii. She takes him to workout room where she leaves to look around. McGarrett snoops finding various bottles of pills in a closet. He takes two bottles before returning to Mrs. Crystal where she tells him there marriage was non-existent for the last year with her accusing him of cheating. The one thing she wanted, Howard wouldn't grant: a divorce. She asks if they do discover he was cheating, to let her know although she doesn't want the name of the other woman. McGarrett asks if he can take the two bottles he grabbed from the workout room and he would like a recent picture. Mrs. Crystal gives her what she can: a photo album. She then tells McGarrett about the fight they had about a football picture he looked at all the time. She had a blow up made for his birthday but when he saw it, he flew into a rage ripping it apart and tossing it into the fireplace.
Chin and Ben arrive to see Abe but it doesn't go well as Abe demands to talk to McGarrett personally. He even sics his dog onto them!
McGarrett goes to talk to Howard's partner Jack Houston. Houston says he didn't know much about Howard's background willing to overlook it after Howard wrote a $40,000 check to buy into the business. Houston says Howard could see the potential and they agreed to the partnership. Houston adds Howard seemed to have been a scrappy kid and as an adult was a very private person. He tells McGarrett the business is faring pretty well with the occasional cash-flow problem but that goes with the territory. McGarrett says they may touch base again. Houston wants to post a $10,000 reward and asks how Mrs. Crystal is doing saying their marriage was one of the better ones around.
Ben walks into the laboratory giving Che something to work on: the pills McGarrett took from Howard's house. Ben explains Howard was a body builder and taking those. Che says the pills can be addictive with Ben telling McGarrett wants everything Che can get including vaccinations and scars.
In McGarrett's office, Danno answers the phone since it's after 8:00 p.m.! The governor is on the other end: the governor is getting heat from Washington to have Five-O turn over the case to the FBI. Apparently it's about confidentiality rather than jurisdiction but McGarrett sees it as a dangerous precedent if they turn over the case to the FBI. The governor tells McGarrett to handle it his way, which McGarrett is grateful for the support. Danno is as confused as McGarrett as to why the FBI is going through Washington to grab the case but McGarrett is determined to figure out what's going on.
McGarrett goes to see Mrs. Crystal again and this time she shows him a negative the photo lab made of the football picture for the blow up.
In McGarrett's office, they compare a recent picture of Howard to the football picture but there are no matches. McGarrett wants Ben to check with sporting-good shops to hopefully date the equipment used. Chin reports Howard was clean in Hawaii and the mainland with no arrests but there really isn't anything found on him. Danno then notices a corner cut off that could have provided a lead to the photographer. The team looks at the faces of the team noticing the range of ages with McGarrett calling them "a mangy lot" wondering if the team isn't semi-pro. Ben mentions he played semi-pro football after Korea: $6 per game and paid own doctor bills. McGarrett wants Ben to check with Professor Lafferty at the university to pin down the geography in the photo. Once the time and geography is figured out, McGarrett wants Danno to check the sports annuals to nail down the team.
In the morgue, Doc (Al Eben) waits on Che to brief McGarrett on what has been in Howard's autopsy: Howard Crystal was not born Howard Crystal! He had extensive work changing the shape of his jaw, changed his nose and his use of anabolic steroids for at least the last five years. Howard didn't have any tattoos but had been at one time in the past. Meanwhile, in a photo lab, Chin tells the developer to send the photo to Washington to get an identification on one of the players as soon as possible through NCIC and NAPL. P>In McGarrett's office, the identification has returned: Julio Bocher, syndicate informer. They're stuck with what appears to be two separate men but McGarrett knows there is a connection between Howard and Bocher, even going on the assumption they're the same person based on the prior surgeries to change his appearance. Ben points out the fingerprints belonged to Howard with no mention of Bocher. With all the pieces they have so far, it makes sense Howard and Bocher were the same person and if he turned on the syndicate, his cover would have to be perfect and it would explain the hit. McGarrett wants Paul to be found as he leaves to visit Abe.
Abe is still grouchy when McGarrett talks to him assuming he's being blamed for everything going wrong including the Titanic's sinking! McGarrett gets to the point telling Abe he knows where Bocher is and can arrange a meeting if any of Abe's people are interested.
McGarrett rushes into Paul's office demanding to know why he didn't tell McGarrett Howard was Bocher. Paul answers that they didn't even let him tell his own wife. They argue over the case and who should have handled it with Paul defending the FBI's right to take care of it because he believes there is a leak in his own office. Neither man is happy about the situation but McGarrett explains Five-O was able to figure out Howard was Bocher in less than four days and it had nothing to do with a leak. Paul wants a full written report on how they were able to crack the cover as soon a possible. Before leaving, McGarrett says they should have lunch once a month, just the two of them.
McGarrett returns to the Palace as Jenny answers the phone: it's Abe wanting to set up a meet with Bocher for a friend of a friend. The bottom line is the syndicate didn't kill Howard/Bocher because they don't know he's dead! Now, Five-O has to start over to figure out who killed him.
In McGarrett's office, Ben reports 29 people attended Howard's funeral and nothing has been found. Danno then lays out what they have: the team is the Utica Grizzlies, a semipro team in upstate New York. The picture was taken 15 years before taken by a guy name George Simon who had an inquiry from Hawaii asking for the names of each man in the photo. Bocher's name was on the original roster, number 44. McGarrett figures whoever killed Howard/Bocher tracked the picture down like they did but Chin points out that person had to already know Howard and Bocher was the same guy, too big of a leap. McGarrett and Danno figures someone suspected Howard wasn't who he said he was and tracked down the information through the picture because all the players could be eliminated except four and one was Bocher. So they start with Houston, Howard's partner, who is not acting the bereaved friend. McGarrett wants to focus on Houston and Mrs. Crystal because they're most likely to have stumbled onto the double identity and orders around the clock surveillance on them. He also wants to see the will with Ben saying he can pick it up.
Houston drives through Honolulu with Danno and Chin on him. Meantime, Ben and Nick are on Mrs. Crystal's tail as she leaves her house. When Houston's car has been parked for awhile, Danno gets out to look around only to see Houston hail a cab and take off. Danno and Chin keep following as Mrs. Crystal arrives at a shopping center where Ben and Nick follow her in as she loses them pretty fast. Danno and Chin follow Houston to a hotel where Danno goes to the back telling Chin to get a list of the occupants. Houston arrives at room '3C' only to find Mrs. Crystal waiting for him! Ben radios McGarrett about losing Mrs. Crystal and McGarrett isn't pleased telling him to go back to her house.
In McGarrett's office, they talk to Paul about the possibility Houston and Mrs. Crystal picked up on Howard's fake identity. Paul doesn't buy the theory but McGarrett wants to pursue it anyway. According to his will, Carla Crystal is Howard's sole heir and beneficiary and there were sizable insurance policies for her and Houston, the latter part of the federal deal with Bocher. Paul still isn't convinced because there's no evidence to prove the theory. As Paul leaves, McGarrett admits Paul is right, they can't convict on theory and calls it a night.
The next day, McGarrett is on the golf course when an idea hits him leaving some fellow golfers in the lurch including Frank (Frank Fasi). He patches to Danno who meets him in the office where McGarrett tosses out his wild idea: if Bocher can become Howard Crystal, why couldn't he become Jack Houston? They're the same height and were the same build before the steroids. Danno is with him asking what his idea is: he wants a pair of HPD officers who helped them last year and have them assigned back to them for four or five days.
McGarrett with Paul in tow visits Carla and Houston showing them pictures of two men. Neither Carla nor Houston recognize the men with McGarrett asking if she's sure they haven't had access to the house posing as inspectors and exterminators. McGarrett goes on to tell them about Howard's true name: Julio Bocher. They can't believe it with Carla calling Howard "unexciting" and Houston saying he was "a sweet guy". Paul explains Bocher giving the FBI information they needed to put away some heavyweight gangsters. McGarrett goes back to the photos pointing out Francis Martin (James Kenneth Grahlmann) and Todd Jelke (Robert S. Sandia). Paul says the men are professional killers and possibly going for Carla and Houston but they don't know why. McGarrett advises them if the men approach to cooperate and when they're safe to call him or Paul. Carla is uneasy about the whole thing while Houston says they should "be in Peoria or Marrakesh by now". Houston says they would have been paid by now and McGarrett tells them $100,000. McGarrett says they'll be in touch as long as the case is open because they're dealing with an open contract. Outside at the car, Paul tells McGarrett he was wrong: Carla and Houston are in it up to their eyeballs.
Inside the house, the pair discuss the hoods, McGarrett and their hit on Howard/Bocher. Houston agrees it would have been nicer if someone had done it for them but the blackmail risk was too great.
Houston drives around Honolulu noticing a big car following him. As well, Carla sees Jelke at a restaurant causing her to become nervous. Houston stands beside Martin in an elevator, as the pair seems to be everywhere.
At Five-O, Paul calls into McGarrett telling him Carla called at 5:00 p.m. and didn't mention anything. Danno reports Luisi and Feders checked in at 3:00 p.m. saying they've been seen at least four times with Houston starting to panic but they're still playing it cool. Chin adds they're behind the officers every step of the way. McGarrett is happy with the results so far and wants it to stay that way.
Houston arrives at Carla's house noticing the big blue car again parked at an intersection. Houston is determined to figure what these guys want while Carla wants to call McGarrett. He talks her out of the second idea taking a gun from a drawer walking out and down the street. Jelke reports Houston is heading their way while McGarrett and Chin stake out in a car. McGarrett tells Danno to move to Kahala and Hunakai as Houston approaches Martin and Jelke asking if they're cops. They then mess with him pretty bad calling Houston "Julio" then Houston freaks out. The three go to the house but the wire becomes more difficult to hear.
Inside the house, Houston tells the pair he's not Julio and Martin keeps poking the bear with Houston finally exploding confessing to killing Howard/Bocher. Once the confession is said, the pair moves in with Jelke getting shot! Houston makes a run for it out the back of the house as McGarrett and Five-O move in. Houston runs for an escape as McGarrett spreads the team out telling Martin to get back to Jelke. Houston and McGarrett exchange gunfire with McGarrett being hit in the arm and Houston finally surrendering. McGarrett is attended to as Jelke is loaded into the ambulance while Paul says they should have lunch every once in awhile.
This plot summary Copyright Bobbi Baker ©2020. No reproduction of any kind without permission.