What’s better than one crossover TV show? How about a three-way networking?

The online buzz, confirmed by recent CBS promos, is that the first-ever three-way crossover is set involving the three remaining “NCIS” shows  in the procedural’s stable on Jan. 2, dominating prime time from 7 to 10 p.m. that evening.

The three-hour-long block will assemble teams from the three shows who will unite in Washington, DC, to celebrate a FLETC (Federal Law Enforcement Training Center) professor, who trained members from each squad. On the eve of the celebration, the prof is discovered dead of an apparent suicide and his former students immediately suspect foul play.

Familiar “NCIS” regulars, gathered for the triple crossover shows airing Jan 2.

First up, “NCIS” and its episode, entitled “Too Many Cooks,” where the teams will come together and sort out investigative strategies.

“Hawai’i” is next up at bat, via “Deep Fake,” where some agents will find themselves captured while some find assets arriving in the islands that could be connected to several overseas assassinations.

“L.A.” is the finale, with an episode called “A Long Time Coming,” with agents find themselves ambushed with each with a $200,000 bounty on their head.

One night, three thrillers and teams, proving there’s strength in numbers, with CBS banking on high ratings from the Good Ship NCIS. Remember when the flagship procedural gave birth to three other series: “NCIS: Los Angeles,” “NCIS: New Orleans,” and “NCIS: Hawai‘i” (New Orleans has been cancelled).

Mark Harmon

It would be a coup, if the flagship original show’s Leroy Jethro Gibbs –that would be Mark Harmon, who led the investigations as special agent Gibbs over 18 seasons – might be aboard, too. But it’s unlikely, since he has not been an on-camera regular for the past two seasons, though he has been credited as an executive producer for most of the run. He wanted out after season18, but remained for two appearances in season 19, to assure CBS to remain committed to the franchise.

Spoiler! Online buzz theorizes that a body bag figures in the crossover, with an unthinkable and unsettling discovery!

There have been some crossovers involving three shows still airing on three other fronts. The networks haven’t been toasting a three-bie  involving the trio of  “Chicago,” “FBI” and “Law and Order” franchises. One doctor or cop or fireman or investigator have made quick cameos in these camps. …

Sight ‘ems

Melanie Tojio Lockyer

I bumped into New York theater couple local actress-director Melanie Tojio Lockyer (“Miss Saigon,” “Allegiance”) and her actor husband Peter Lockyer (“Miss Saigon,” “Les Miserables,” “Chicago”) at the opening of “The Year Christmas Was Almost Cancelled last weekend at Mamiya Theatre. They’re holidaying here to visit her family but enjoyed a reunion of the holiday musical’s co-creators, Kyle Kakuno and Roslyn Catracchia.

At the recent Randy Rainbow concert at Hawaii Theatre, he asked the audiences during a Q&A moment, where he might find nightlife action following his concert. Several in the audience shouted “Hula’s,” and it was uncertain if Rainbow knew this was a gay hangout. I ran into Hula’s proprietor Jack Law, after the show, in a nearby parking garage, and he was all smiles. “Quite a plug,” said Law. Not likely that the comedian/parodist made the trek after the show. …

Broadway grosses, week ending Dec. 4

While “The Music Man” remains No. 1 as the top-grossing Broadway show with $3.083 million last week, “The Lion King” roared to the tune of $2.162 million for No. 2 creds, leaving “Hamilton” at No. 3 with a respectable $2.083 million.

Such is the see-sawing rankings, courtesy The Broadway League.

The numbers:

And that’s Show Biz. …


Just asking …

If Hollywood filmmakers are seeking hefty discounts and insider tax incentives to shoot projects  in Hawaii – vs. other tropical sites such as Mexico or the Caribbean – shouldn’t state regulators  consider new mandatory requirements to ensure mutually beneficial perks?

One consideration might be to require, when possible, at least a secondary role for union actors from Hawaii to gain an edge to audition for a part on camera. Instead of a Maori from New Zealand to play someone local, why not a genuine local?

So often, shows are cast before setting shop on our shores, while we have a stable of eager performers hungry for work. Local behind-the-scenes techies are regularly hired; why not on camera participants, too? Then, it might be a win-win situation. The attitude that we don’t have talent here is so untrue.

The last and only TV show to hire fresh island faces for secondary leads was the original “Hawaii Five-0,” giving Al Harrington and Zulu a huge opportunity to strut their stuff. The only current islander (though now a Los Angeles resident) is Anthony Ruivivar, who plays the husband of lead agent Vanessa Lachery in “NCIS: Hawaii.” His role is recurring, but limited.  Technically,  Amy Hill of the rebooted “Magnum P.I.” (she plays Tutui) is not a local, but now sorta is, since she has bought a condo, which makes her a part-time resident but she lives and talks like  one us anyway.

The query: Don’t you think Hawaii-based shows, notably TV, should hire more resident actors? …


CBS’ “Magnum P.I.,” which filmed four seasons in Hawaii but was canceled by the network in May, has found a new home at NBC, and has been assured of at least two more seasons, with options for more.

The life-saving story, revealed a day ago — and 49 days after CBS canceled the sleuth-in-a-red Ferrari show —  includes a renewal program over two years but with a vastly reduced 20-episode deal, or 10 per season, half of the customary 20-plus single year timetable .

And because the lateness of the decision by NBC, production cannot begin till this fall, and a programming slot won’t be known till 2023.

A tangle of discussions apparently were held to rescue the popular show, featuring Jay Hernandez as Thomas Magnum, and his colleague Julia Higgins, portrayed by Perdita Weeks. “Magnum” has maintained a respectable ratings record in its primetime Friday slot, preceding CBS’ “‘Blue Bloods,” ironically starring Tom Selleck, the original “Magnum” back in the day. The reboot’s numbers — 7.338 million viewers per episode, according to Nielsen – means it ranked 30th out of 151 Big 4 broadcast programs over the recently-wrapped September-to-May season. “Magnum” also was tied for 56th in the desired adults 18-49 demo (a 0.7 rating), aligned with shows like “Shark Tank,” “The Resident,” and “Law & Order.”

Perdita Weeks as Higgins, Jay Hernandez as Magnum: Two-year-renewal on NBC.

When keep-it or kill-it season neared, the apparent key issue of friction was the licensing fee – “the biggest sticking point,” as expressed by IndieWire. The rights to the show were owned by NBCUniversal’s Universal Television. Earlier talks about the fate of “Magnum” mentioned that NBC and its streaming wing, Peacock, would be the ultimate destination..

Amy Hill

Hernandez might have had some inside knowledge that a pick-up was coming, later than sooner, so he signed on to filming this summer of an indie film, “The Long Game.” He’ll still be able to complete that mission.

Amy Hill, who plays Teuila Tuileta, aka Kumu, on “Magnum,” is said to have two film projects this summer, that also will be completed before the fall shooting of the show agenda under new call letters. Presumably, cast members can sign on to projects when filming is not under way.

Clearly, when the filming begins, NBC can begin its storytelling at the point of the CBS ending, when Magnum and Higgins kissed and cooed and made certain an element of romance would be part of their relationship in the future. But the axe fell, when CBS didn’t renew, so NBC can now strut its peacock feathers when the new era of “Magnum” begins. …

‘All Rise’ moves to OWN

Another CBS series, “All Rise,” was not renewed by CBS after two seasons, but it found a new home at the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN).

Ruthie Ann Miles

Season three, thus is under way, with Simone Missick, back in court as Judge Lola Carmichael, who also serves as an exec producer of the show. Of particular interest to Islanders, however, is that a co-star on the show, played by Tony-winning actress from Kaimuki High School, Ruthie Ann Miles, who continues as Lola’s assistant Sherri Kansky. She has been a Broadway musical theater star, earning a Tony for her featured supporting role in “The King and I,” but also is known for portraying Imelda Marcus in an off-Broadway musical, “Here Lies Love,” which earned her the Lucille Lortel Award for Outstanding Actress in a Musical f

And that’s Show Biz. …


If you spot a temporary yellow street sign which says “DKMD,” with arrows pointing left or right, it’s the first clue that Season 2 filming has begun for Disney+’s Hawaii-based “Doogie Kamealoha, M.D.” series, starring Peyton Elizabeth Lee, as the minor who has a major youth presence as a licensed doctor at a hospital.

Peyton Elizabeth Lee

About the tell-tale directional sign: DK stands for Doogie Kamealoha, MD is for medical doctor. The code name, thus, is DKMD, and if you spot it somewhere in your community, that’s an indication that shooting is under way nearby. Follow the arrows.

The first evidence of the sign appearance was in May in Waimanalo, where the TV home of Lahela “Doogie” Kamealoha lives, the teen who leads two lives: as a teen with peer needs, as an MD who can perform surgery. It’s a wholly Disneyesque project, for sure, with meaningful and plenty ‘ohana rituals. ‘Ohana, of course, means family, which was the core of Stitch, in Disney’s earlier Hawaii-set “Lilo and Stitch” animated series and films.

Like the sophomore first season, “Doogie” will film 10 episodes with production expected to continue till mid-August, or thereabout. Season 2 episodes will launch in the fall.

The series, created by Kourtney Kang (who also is an executive producer), is a reboot of Neil Patrick Harris’ “Doogie Houser, M.D.” The island version has a credible cast, including Jason Scott Lee, Kathleen Rose Perkins, Matthew Sato, Wes Tian,Emma Meisel, Mapuana Makie, Jeffrey. Bowyer Chapman, Ronnie Chieng, and Alex Aiono. Expect a few additions this year….

Around town…

Lacey Chabert

Lacey Chabert, who played Little Cossette in “Les Miserables” on Broadway, before becoming part of the cast of “Party of Five” on Fox, has become a hugely popular Hallmark star with nearly 30 projects thus far. She’s been in town filming “Groundswell,” under the Crown MediaFamily Network banner (the company produces the Hallmark projects, too).

And local singer Anuhea plays herself – as a “celebrity host,” — in a segment involving a cooking competition. …

Then there’s Blake Vanamserfoorth formerly from Hawaii but now a Venice Beach resident who launched his own clothing brand — will be seen in “Vanjie: 24 Hours of Love,” airing beginning June 9 via WOW Presents Plus, a streaming service. The reality dating show, reeling back the curtain on gay romance quests, is produced by the makers of “RuPaul’s Drag Race.”

Vanamserfoorth is a contestant on the series, which will feature conversations about sex positivity and other topics within the gay dating community.

In his pre-airing notes, Vanamserfoorth indicates his intent is to find a date who makes him laugh and isn’t afraid to voice his opinion, a companion who loves to dress up and go to parties. Game on! …

And that’s Show Biz. …


There’s a blurry haze surrounding the fate of “Tokyo Vice,” a gritty HBO Max cop drama set in the seedy underworld of the yakuza of Japan. Will it have a second season? It depends on what you’re reading or hearing. NA (not available) is what’s listed on one website regarding future episodes, but Wikipedia states a logical reason to the mystery: that the show was shut down because of the Covid-19 impact in Japan.

Thus, the never or next issue is still playing out on social media.

The logical indication is, however, that it’s sayonara for the mysterious but engaging 1990s story about a gaijin (foreigner), Jake Adelstein (impressively played by
Ansel Elgort) seeking fame and credibility, working as a novice crime reporter in constant communication with his seasoned mentor, Hiroto Katagiri (superbly played by Ken Watanabe). Adelstein is a real-life cop reporter for the Yomiuri Shimbun, who wrote the memoir on which the series was based.

The eighth and final episode ended without the customary to-be-continued notion of a second season, nor an indicator that future life awaits, particularly because of the unfinished business portrayed so far. Awkward!

Alnsel Elgort is Jake Adelstein, Ken Watanabe is Hiroto Kakigiri in “Tokyo Vice.”

It matches the clumsy uncertainty regarding CBS’ “Magnum P.I.,” the domestic procedural which aired its final episode Friday (May 13), following weeks of hopeful wonderment of a fifth season. The episode concluded with shared “I like you” admissions from both Thomas Magnum (Jay Herandez) and Juliet Higgins (Perdita Weeks), likely intended for a sequel that is now impossible. CBS has axed the show. It’s history. Pau.

These two shows – one streaming, the other on prime time TV– represent worst case scenarios of halting ongoing storylines without a proper conclusion. It’s an unexpected slap in the face –  Will Smith, anyone? — on the fan base of dedicated viewers.

Tokyo’s expansive dark alleys and neon signage art have become kind of a “character” of a city with hoods killing clients if they don’t fess up “protection” fees. With so many loose threads, the abrupt ending suggests that all concerned expected a second-season pick-up to sort out the tangles.

Instead, the series concluded with loose, tangled, even bloodied plot strings hanging in the air. Will HBO Max reconsider? Can the show be picked up and streamed elsewhere? No answers here.

The anticipation, and axing, equals the recent undeserving dismissal of CBS’ filmed-in-Hawaii “Magnum,” begging a question: Where are the ethics of the TV industry, which builds up its storylines and yet when push comes to shove, they simply shut down, and call it quits with no lifelines to explore. Literally, diehard followers are left hanging, and they deserve better.

Perhaps the rebooted “Magnum” – a far better procedural than the earlier reboot but canceled “Hawaii Five-O” – had become a victim of too much of the same thing, particularly since CBS’ other brand, “NCIS,” added a colon and an okina to its “NCIS: Hawai‘i,” which was green-lighted for a second season this fall and thus grabbed the next-season ticket despite being a freshman show.  The scenics were postcard-pretty on all the island procedurals; “Magnum” seemed to have become the victim of this- too-much-ness, despite its good but not great ratings. There had been talks earlier of a “Five-O” and “Magnum” crossover, but realistically, that was an odd idea. Brands shouldn’t mix;  like, Starbucks wouldn’t and shouldn’t partner up with Dunkin.’

Perdita Weeks is Juliet Higgins, Jay Hernandez is Thomas Magnum in “Magnum P.I.”

The “NCIS” original, minus Mark Harmon, did a crossover with its “Hawai‘i” sister towards the end of the island show’s first season, so it was a workable same-brand handshake.

Methinks scripts must be logical, with crossosvers.  Think of NBC’s “Chicago” brand with its “Medm” “Fire,” and “P.D.” on Wednesday nights, jammed with operations, fires and thugs, providing fictional fireworks for the Windy City first-responders. Firefighters appear on the hospital show; cops pop up, too, and yes, there are crossovers galore. But the franchise skillfully shares characters, when plotlines warrant the give-and-take.

Similarly, the CBS trio of  back-to-back “FBI” shows on Tuesdays, is ladened with exciting characters tackling current plots that embrace kidnapping, drugs, and gangsters, using the model of “Chicago.”  Thus, judicious crossovers work with this brand, too.

On Thursdays, NBC’s original “Law and Order” has been rebooted and Sam Waterson as Jack McCoy is grappling for tenure again and is basically under utilized to regain his niche again. The long-running “Law and Order: SVU” with Sgt. Olivia Benson (the irrepressible Mariska Hargitay) as the boss trying to curb sexual assaults and crimes has had crossovers plus a spin-off. Thus, stability and durability is working in this camp.

“Law and Order: Organized Crime” still needs fine-tuning, to give  Elliot  Stabler (Christopher Meloni, from the SVU roster earlier) more juice since he’s fumbling to find footing and viewership.

But back to “Tokyo Vice.” It warrants a second season, to clean up some bloodshed, and work out not just the fate of Alderstein but the denizens of characters. Spoilers alert here, if you’re still midway through viewing the show: Will Samantha (Rachel Keller) find her fellow bar hostess, Polina (Ella Rumpf), who has been captured by her boyfriend and taken Samantha’s lifesavings, too? Will Sato (Sho Kasamatsu), survive the dangers  and trappings of his yakuza lords?  Will Katagiri-san’s wife and children dodge the yakuza’s threats of murder. Will Eimi (Rinko Kikuchi), the newspaper editor, finally find faith and trust in her cub reporter Adelstein and assist him with a foothold? Much to chew in this unfinished stew.

Yet it’s been a splendid, unexpected thriller with its fish-out-of-water central figure, in a dangerous  situation with constant threats as he paddles in this uncertain underworld to help curb crime.

Elgort: He learned Japanese phonetically.

If there’s a takeaway, even if there’s no final closure on “Tokyo Vice,” it might be this: watching and hearing Elgort utter his lines in Nihongo is a treat; he memorized his lines phonetically and this accomplishment makes him one of the most unheralded, unappreciated figures in dual-language serials.

As for the “Magnum” playout, there’s a sweeter outlook. At least Magnum’s got his car and Higgins has her mansion. And Hernandez, on social media, was philosophical in his response to the show’s demise.”All good things must come to an end,” he said. “We made memories I’ll be forever grateful for and thanks to each and every one of you for going on this wild ride with us,” he said.”It’s all love. Until next time.”

Now, that’s a sentimental and warm expression of aloha. …

And that’s Show Biz. …