couple #1 - clearly not over honeymoon phase (will they ever?), but very devoted and serious about each other. visit is very heartbreaking and profond. they are literally the cutest and the saddest.
couple #2 - spouse is clearly angry at his now-criminal and hotheaded partner, not very good at hiding it, but also not very good at hiding affection that lays beneath it. Jaily lover is kinda tired to death and just hopes for some dirty talk.
Why Steve McGarrett and Danny Williams Deserve Everlasting Happiness Together: An Essay by a Hardcore Shipper
Ok, so before I begin this, you should know that I am a hardcore McDanno shipper. Aside from Kono and Adam, they are my number one O.T.P. on Hawaii Five-0. I am literally so obsessed with Steve and Danny and their relationship, and I’m not ashamed of it, either. Therefore, this comment I’ll most likely come off as biased, but I have very good logic behind what I’m about to say. (Also, I can already tell that this post is going to be verrrrrryyyy long, so buckle up and get comfy if you are planning to read everything I’ve written.)
To start, I see many comments reading, “They have great chemistry, they should still be together, they are endgame…” etc. while all of this is true, to be honest, they are better suited off as friends. They tried to make a relationship work, but usually, it did not.
“But they were together on and off for five seasons!” Is what some of you are probably already thinking. This is true, but unfortunately, it does not mean that they are forever meant to be together.
Remember Billy, Catherine’s ex from season 3? Just to clarify, he died in the middle of season 4. However, before he died, he was trying to get back together with Catherine. She had chemistry with him, too. The only problem was that she was legitimately already with Steve at that time. To be honest, I always liked her better with Billy then I did with Steve. They just went better together, in my opinion.
So Catherine and Steve were together. Then, in season 5, she and Steve went to Afghanistan (or some other, terrible, Taliban filled town) in order to save somebody that had helped Catherine when she’d been in the military. If you’ll recall, at the end of that episode, Catherine decided to stay behind to help the people get their son back. Steve went back to the United States, heartbroken and crying.
All of this made me still think that Steve and Catherine still had a slight chance to make it. But then.
Catherine returned in the season 5 finale to attend Kono’s wedding. Ok, cool. Steve has a date for the wedding of the century. That was all fine and good. Obviously, that was the same episode when they broke up. To be frank, I always thought it would be Steve that broke up with Catherine, obviously so he could go FINALLY be with Danny, his one true love. But instead, Catherine broke up with Steve, citing that she decided to go do some good, volunteer work in a foreign country. I remember her saying to Steve, “Five-0 is your thing. Please, let this be mine.”
Then her car to take her to the airport arrived, and she got in. She made a phone call.
Now, to the viewers who had history with this show, they knew that as SOON as she punched in a code before speaking that it was no good. Steve’s mom, also a spy, had done the same thing in previous episodes, so they knew what was up. The real slap in the face, though, was when she said to the voice on the phone who she was-badge number, name, the whole nine yards. Then, we hear a male voice on the other end of the line ask, “Is he fooled?” (Or something similar). Catherine’s reply came sharp. (Again, not an exact quote, but pretty close. I think you’ll get the memo). “He doesn’t know anything. He thinks I’m volunteering,” she said.
It was then that I officially stopped wanting them to be in a relationship. I get why she couldn’t tell Steve, but still! She fucking choose that same life/lifestyle that his mother had had; a lifestyle that she knew he hated. If she truly loved and cared for him as more than a friend, then she would’ve rejoined Five-0, or at LEAST have found a cool, different job in Oahu.
But no. She literally betrayed Steve, and for what, anyway? We never did get a good understanding or explanation of why she decided to join the C.I.A. It is a concept that stills boggles my mind to this very day. Most recently, Catherine came back for the 150th episode, which is where this clip is obviously from. But this point, I was beyond done with her. I was so irritated when she came back, especially because she interrupted Steve’s date with Lynn. Oh, right. And she never told Steve that she became a spy, so he was clearly shocked when she divulged this piece of information.
This brings me to my next point. Steve, his mom, and Catherine had to fight off some bad guys after his mom, and then hide from them. When the doorbell rang at the safe house, it was the rest of the Five-0 team, minus Danny who was in New Jersey to be there for his dad who’d just had knee surgery. (In real life, Scott Caan was busy with his new family and couldn’t schedule to film the 150th episode). Steve had called Danny earlier that day to tell him what was going on, and Danny decided to call the rest of the team to help him.
Yeah. Danny called the team. Not Catherine, who probably knew that they were gonna need backup. Danny, who wasn’t even there, called the team and made sure they were there for Steve.
That’s just one example of why Steve and Danny are so important to each other and belong together; much more so than Steve and Catherine. Let’s go back few years, to season three. Danny had accidentally stepped on a bomb. The bomb would explode if he stepped off, killing everyone in the vicinity, himself included. Steve know this, but he stayed anyway. Even at Danny’s persistence of him to, “Just go, Steve. Go me there for Grace. Get out of here, save yourself!”, Steve did not budge. He insisted on staying and they talked and tried to get Danny to forget why he was even there in the first place. His persistence in not wanting to go proves that they have more than friendship, especially when he knew exactly what to talk about or get Danny calm enough so that he would momentarily forget about the bomb.
Fast forward to season four. The episode where the building collapsed had to have been the most dramatic episode of season four. To refresh, Steve, Danny, and the rest of the team were in a paring grange, looking for a victim. I don’t speak exactly remember why, but the rest of the team left the garage, except for Danny and Steve. They investigated until they found a man bound and gagged, tied to a chair in a separate room. Just as they were figuring out what he was saying, which was, “BOMB!” the bomb went off, collapsing the building.
That episode was solely focused on Steve and Danny and how they were gong to get out of their predicament. Danny was also badly hurt, his leg trapped under a cement pillar. Steve didn’t give up. After freeing Danny, he temporarily managed to fix his wound, and then created a mini-bomb that would let the people looking for them where they were. It worked and they were free. Once out, they exchanged their first ever “I love yous” while hard-core hugging. This was no “hey bro!” hug. This was an “I am so serious about this, I really do love you,” hug. And I don’t think I’m wearing shipper goggles for that moment. I genuinely think that that meant what they said. They embraced for a really long time, surprisingly longer then what I would’ve thought producers would’ve liked.
After that epic bromance scene, season five was filled with plenty more bromantic/ shipper-O.T.P. feels. That was the season when they went to therapy! Ok, fine, true, it’s because they are “work partners” and it was mandatory, but you can’t tell me that they weren’t acting like a married couple throughout all of those scenes. There is one episode from that therapy time period in particular that I am thinking of, and it has everything to do with undercover work. It’s the part of the episode where there is a huge bank heist and Danny and Steve decide to head to an apartment across the street from the robber so they can spy on her and see what she is planning on doing next.
The Five-0 team (but more importantly, the production staff and possibly Peter Lenvok) could have had anyone do this. They could have had cousins Kono and Chin watching out or even the odd combination of Grover and Chin. But no. They choose Steve and Danny. Shippers all across the globe rejoiced.
The best part of their stay in the place (besides, of course, seeing how Danny and Steve would live with each other if given the real chance to) was when it was nighttime and one kept a lookout while the other one slept. Steve decide to watch first, so Danny slept, and he randomly woke up in the middle of Steve’s shift. He noticed that the “Perfect Partners” workbook the therapist had given them had been moved, which he thought was funny, because Steve already made it a known that he didn’t want anything to do with the book. So he said something about it, and Steve didn’t confess to moving it, even though we all know that he did.
Steve then told Danny a story about his youth; a salty that made him seem more human in Danny’s eyes. He started it of by saying, “Music. I’m into music,” when Danny asked why his hobbies were. “So?” Danny had retorted. “That’s a cop-out. Everyone is into music.” “No, I meant I’m into playing it,” Steve responded. He then told Danny the story about when he was a junior in high school and was in the school talent show to play his guitar. But he had had major stage fright and hadn’t actually gone through with it, getting off the stage before he even began. He said to Danny, “That is the reason why I still don’t play the guitar to this day,” Steve had finished the story. He also add that he had previously never told anyone that story before, which is why it was an important plot point in the McDanno tale. Once he was done, Danny laughed at him. “A little bit of stage fright stopped you from forever playing the guitar?” He’d asked. They then had one of their cute little arguments over the whole issue, and right before Danny went back to sleep, he said, “You know, after all we’ve been though together…your father…my brother…I would be thought you would’ve opened up to me more by now.” Steve causally responds, “I just did.” The McDanno universe (myself included) lost all chill, reblogging that moment over and over.
Later, at the end of that same episode, Steve, Danny and everybody else were at Kamakoahs to eat. Steve and Danny had to leave early, in order to go to their thereby appointment. Ruth, who we met earlier in the episode, was really confused. Remember, she was the old lady who thought that Danny and Steve were gay and living together, to which Steve responded, “We’re not gay, we’re Five-0.” Later, after she left, Danny said, “You know, I would’ve just vine with the gay thing.” So that happened, which does is why Ruth was so confused. As they left, she said, “Wait. I thought they weren’t gay.” The rest of the team didn’t even deny it, they just joyfully laughed, as if to say, “Yeah, girl, we know. They’re just faking it. We know they are gay together.”
So they walked to Danny’s Camaro, and that’s when a fan fiction moment happened. You possibly know what I’m talking about. In case you don’t, fanfiction moments are those little things in which you think, “Yeah, this can definitely only and will only happen in this fan fiction universe. Sigh.” But then the thing from the fan fic actually does happen on the real show, and life suddenly becomes magical. Anyway, this fan fic moment was when Danny revealed that he’d gotten Steve a gift. After telling Danny that he didn’t do his part of their assignment, joking that the dog ate his homework, we find out what the gift is. In the trunk of the Camaro, Steve pulled out an elegant black guitar case. Steve had asked, “What is this, Danny?” Danny, his usual snarky self, responded, “It’s a tuba, you schmuck. Just open it and you’ll see.” Inside the case was a beautiful, new guitar which Danny had purchased specifically for Steve. As Danny looked on proudly, Steve muttered, “Danny, Danny, DANNY,” with a small smile on his face. He strummed a few strings, and they had a little back and forth conversation about Steve’s new instrument, including some things about why Danny had purchased it in the first place. I don’t remember what exactly was said, but I do recall that Danny had gotten it for Steve so that he could get back into playing again. Then, Steve put the guitar back in the case and looked thoughtful for a moment. He slammed the trunk of the Camaro and tossed the keys to Danny, saying, “You know what? You drive.” Danny caught the keys, a look of pure shock on his face. “I drive. Wow,” a stunned Danny said as he accepted the gesture. “Don’t get too excited,” Steve had replied as he climbed in the passenger seat for the first time in a long time. “I’m still controlling the radio.” Driving away, Steve did exactly that, messing around with the switch from the passenger seat.
Ok. That scene was very important for many reasons. Let’s start with guitar. Danny didn’t have to get him that. Steve never asked him for it, he simply told Danny a story. A story which he had never told anyone before, ever. This obviously includes Catherine, which doesn’t make sense. If they were so close, wouldn’t Steve have trusted her enough to tell her this about himself? But he never did. He chose to tell Danny instead. Danny went above and beyond what any purely platonic friend would, and it showed. I’m not saying that friends can’t buy friends nice gifts for no reason, but it just felt different, in that case. I know that whenever my friends tell me something about themselves, I don’t immediately rush out to buy them some thing hella expensive for no reason at all. And it wasn’t even the fact that he bought Steve a gift for no reason. It was the fact of what it was, combined with the fact of the story (as mentioned above). It also didn’t hurt that Danny could see that that life experience really affected Steve, and that he missed playing his guitar. Steve was extremely touched by the gesture, and Danny was so proud of himself for buying that expensive instrument for Steve. I don’t think Danny had ever done doe thing like that for anyone before, not even the people in his family. It was especially worth it to him when Steve admitted to loving at first touch. The smile on both of their faces when the guitar was revealed says enough about this topic, in my opinion. It proves that A) They care enough about each other to listen, talk, and reveal information about themselves without getting made fun of (at least not too much, anyway) and B) they are willing to go the extra mile just to make each other happy.
The other reason that end scene was crucial was the whole “Danny is driving ” thing. For those who are casual watchers, it is important to know that basically, ever since the day they met, Steve has been driving Danny’s Camaro. This fact has been brought up many times before in the script, and it is the main source of their many “carguments” (I’m not telling you what that is. You can look it up yourself if you don’t know). It was even brought up in one of their therapy appointments from earlier in season five. For Steve to actually let Danny drive for once was a huge milestone on his part. He was so affected, surprised, and touched by the gift of the amazing guitar that he felt like he had to let Danny drive after that. It was a compromise he was willing to make. It also shows the progress that they made in their relationship that day, and it was just more overall proof that they are the endgame couple.
I could clearly go on and on forever about these two. Another really good example of their relativity is when they have to go to couple’s counseling as part of their mandatory therapy. Do you all remember that? Just for a refresher, that was the one where Steve literally signed them up for couples counseling; as in husband-and-wife couples counseling. Anyway. That episode is “feels worthy” in its entirety (especially the ending where they were just chilling at a table, eating lunch together. Also, Steve round Danny’s arm to “feel the effects of the lotion”. Sure, Steve. If that excuse works for you…).
Beside those specific examples, there have multiple hugs and touches that have lingered for far too long. Danny calls Steve “Babe”; a nickname he rarely calls anybody else, and Steve calls Danny “Danno”. True, this is mostly to annoy him, but as Danny gets to know Steve better, he slowly realizes that he actually doesn’t mind it. “When I say ‘Danno’…it’s a term of endearment,” Steve said in season one when Danny was protesting it. Much to Steve’s surprise, Danny responded, “Do it every day, then. I like it.” Steve smiled all goofily, and it was worth it for all those times of Danny yelling at Steve to not use it. Another point to bring up-they are the few people to ever use each other’s full names; Steven and Daniel, respectively. The only other people who occasionally call them by their full names are the few times their parents (sometimes not even that, but a parent-like figure) have been on the show. Whenever they call the other by their full name, it’s usually to prove a point, to get the others attention, or even just to subtly let them know that they are different from what everyone else knows. Again, this is just my opinion.
Then there are various innuendos that refer to Danny and Steve in a non-bro/non- platonic way, including the amount of times they say, “I love you,” to each other. The one after the building collapse made sense, but every time they say it after that is just to mess with shippers. They really do love each other, though. In fact, at the end of one particularly memorable occasion, Danny combined nickname with an I love you. He was talking to Steve about something, and at the end of their conversation, he looked up at Steve and said, “That’s why I love you, babe.” All of the McDanno shippers died a little bit that day. (Well, I know I did, anyway.) Also, side-note: Remember the “air hearts” from season two?! Oh! And that time in season three where they went fishing together and then got stranded for almost the whole episode? Tell me that wasn’t one of the greatest things to ever see on Hawaii Five-0, and in the McDanno world…! My point is that they have all these endearment terms that they say to each other, sometimes for no reason at all. They are saying them because they want to, not because they feel like they have to. To me, it doesn’t feel forced onto the characters, either. It just seems natural and easy with them. Even people who don’t ship them (yes, there are some) raised eyebrows at the amount of times they are unusually sweet on each other.
I also want to mention episode 8 from season 7, specifically the ending. (SPOILER ALERT. Duh.) It was an emotional episode all around, but after the Five-0 team arrested all or the bad guys, and all of the hostages were free again, they all individually hugged it out with one another. Steve and Danny were a good space apart from each other. They were smiling and looking at each other, clearly enjoying the fact that they were both ok. Finally, Steve broke the silence by saying, “What, no hug?” Even the casual viewer would be able to tell that he was disappointed and slightly sad about this fact. And then Danny Williams said the most scream-worthy thing he’s said in a long time.
“If I hug you, I might kiss you, and then where would it stop?”
ASDFGHHJKLLKJFFDSAA. That was literally my reaction to that quote, aside from screaming and jumping up and down. True, people could say that they were just so relieved that both of them were safe, and that’s why he said it, but honestly? I don’t think so. First of all, they looked at each other, goofily smiling for way too long, as they usually do. Next, Danny said, “then where would it stop?” If he had left that part out, it would be less scream-worthy. In that one sentence, everything Danny Williams has ever actually, truly wanted was finally made clear. He wants Steve.
Catherine has never done anything like this for Steve. Honestly, she was always too busy playing the damsel in distress and worrying about herself rather than Steve and trying to fix the problem at hand. Even though she was in the Navy, same as Steve, Danny somehow understands this fact better than she does. The funny thing is that Danny was never in any sort military whatsoever. To clarify, I’m not even talking about all of the times where Danny has casually made fun of what branch Steve served in. In my opinion, Danny understands the things that happened to Steve while he was over there, and he can relate to the trauma he went through. Catherine, on the other hand, never wanted to talk about serious issues with Steve, even if he brought it up. Most of the time, unless it involved a problem she was in, she gave no care to what Steve’s past experiences had been. However, I know that this argument is, as my Algebra II teacher would put it, “weak sauce”, so you can come after me for that if you’d like. Anyway, back to the point. I just think that Catherine was a poorly developed character from the moment we met her. Aside from occasionally helping Five-0 with some cases, she didn’t really add any substance to the story, especially when it came to matters involving Steve. In fact, the only real, solo plot lines she ever really got was the things with Billy, her ex, and then of course the would “I’m going to stay in Afghanistan” Taliban thing. She also got the spy story line, which was bitter to many, and it didn’t do a great job on making me believe that she and Steve could ever be in a real relationship. It was lazy acting, especially on Michelle Borth’s (the woman that plays Catherine) part. She could have done a lot better, including trying to convince the writers and producers to come up with a better story for Catherine. Ok, to be fair, I think that if that dumbass spy storyline was better, it could’ve possibly saved their sinking relationship. But alas, it didn’t, and in all honesty, I thought it was a dumb plot twist. To me, it wasn’t even a plot twist, but I regress. To get back on topic…even when she was with Steve, actually in a relationship with him, there were still things with Danny that made her side–eye and question them. Obviously, I have examples, but that would take too much time to write all of them down. Trust me, though, there’s many examples of this.
Overall, given all of the great evidence I have provided, it is clear to see why Steve and Catherine do not belong together. They will never be my personal endgame, anyway. Danny and Steve have something special; something more than friendship, or even a silly, fun bromance. I will 100% stand by the McDanno ship until the day I die. Even if it has absolutely no chance of ever legitimately becoming canon, I will not give up. Fuck, when the show eventually, ends and if they are STILL not together, I will be shipping it. (And also writing letters/making phone calls/leaving messages on all of their social media’s to the production staff and writers questing why the hell they baited us after all of those years and then never followed through on it.) It is my belief that if two people are meant to be together, they will find a way to be together. Steve McGarrett and Danny Williams clearly are these two people. They have gone above and beyond on showing the world what love really is. Catherine and Steve have not. Sure, they’ve had a lot of fun together, but that does not begin to compare to the amazing relationship that Danny and Steve have built for themselves. I will never lose hope about McDanno.
Catherine is just another thing standing in the way. Danny and Steve WILL be together one day. For real. Forever. It’s just a matter of time and bravery. The fans are more than ready, and the writers have been leading up to a real relationship between them for years. I don’t care who you ship, you absolutely cannot deny the fireworks happening between those two. Mark my words and take this long-ass…thing I’ve written as proof. But until everyone (writers, actors, fans, literally everyone involved with Five-0) gets their shit together…well, at least there’s a fanfic for that!
If anyone would like to discuss post this with me, feel free to message me directly. I’d be thrilled to talk to you about McDanno. And of not, that’s cool too. I’ll always be here, though, if you need to desperately drop a line(: