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CBS explains why it's 'Hawaii Five-0" and not 'Hawaii-Five-O'

July 7, 2010 |  2:31 pm


Do not accuse us of not staying on top of the big news.

Earlier today, we posted an item about a CBS press release that clarifies that its new re-make, "Hawaii Five-0," uses a zero in the title and not the letter "o."

We were confused by that because, for one thing, we are easily confused. But also because people always pronounced it "five-oh," which led to the slang term for police, "5-0."  You know, as in, "Run! 5-0 coming!"

A CBS insider explains that the clarification was necessary because of Internet searches. If people type the title wrong, then they might miss out on what CBS is doing to promote the show, say, on cbs.com or Twitter or Facebook. Variety took this seriously and analyzed you users of the Internet. In conclusion: It does make a difference. A Google search with the zero netted 263,000 results; using the letter yielded 1.7 million.

Besides, the CBS insider added, it's not the network's fault that we all insist on reading zeroes in copy as the letter "o."

"Blame society," she said. "This is really for editors and for people who want to type things correctly. I know there aren't many of them because accuracy has taken a back seat to immediacy."

This makes sense to us, but we were not willing to stop here. We put our top researcher on the case and discovered that, although most people assume that the original series titled itself after the slang term for police, that's not what happened.

Hawaii is the 50th state, and that's where the original title was born. But it's also true that it was the series that led to the creation of the police slang "5-0."

We hope we have been of service.


--Maria Elena Fernandez
twitter.com/writerchica

Video: The opening credits for the new "Hawaii-Five-0". Credit: CBS

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