Hawaii Five-0 interview: Katrina Law on show ending, big Quinn episode

Hawaii Five-0

Friday night’s Hawaii Five-0 episode is going to bring us closer to the end of the show’s run, but to go along with that, it should prove illuminating for Quinn Liu. Within this episode, you’re going to have a chance to see the character’s former stepdaughter for the first time. She comes to Quinn for help after her father doesn’t come home, and this sends her on a journey to uncover the truth. Along the way, you’ll also get a better sense of who she really is and some of what she’s gone through. It’s a valuable bit of insight that makes us wonder what other cool stuff the writers could have done had the series continued beyond season 10?

Below, Katrina Law talks to CarterMatt about some of what you can expect in this episode (it’s a powerful one, rest assured) — alongside her thoughts on saying goodbye to the show she’s been a part of for the past year. You can watch our initial reaction to the news of the show ending at the bottom of this interview. Be sure to subscribe to CarterMatt on YouTube and view our show playlist for more coverage.

CarterMatt – When you first signed on to do the show, how much did Peter [Lenkov] and the writers give you on backstory?

Katrina Law – They gave me nothing (laughs). I asked Peter what my backstory was when we first sat down and had a chat, and he told me that she was former Army, CID. They hadn’t decided fully what my backstory was, but that I was a little bit of a bird with a broken wing. When I was introduced, this was to be my family and where I would find my comfort zone and security. He was right on so many level.

I was curious to see where the writers were going to take Quinn, and they were like ‘we’re going to see what you’re going to bring to this character and we’ll go from there.’ I don’t know what it was about me that made them think up the story they did, but I love this story and I love this episode. I’m really excited for people to see it.

When you were playing the character were you envisioning a specific backstory — or, were you thinking more in terms of generalities?

I basically thought in generalities when I first came into the series. From there when each script was brought to me, I started to make things more specific. I waited to see what was given to me.

The way that I work — and the way that I think a lot of television tends to work — is that you tend to create this backstory. Then, as each episode goes along, you start to adjust that and tweak who you think you are. Who I thought I was in the first episode is very different from who I am in the series finale, but it’s been a fun journey and challenging in a positive way.

When you jump into a show like Hawaii Five-0 that is iconic and entering season 10, obviously Peter and the writers are doing something different. So, you just trust them to take you on a journey.

What surprised you the most about the storyline that they developed for you?

For one, that Quinn was married and she’s never spoken about it before. Also, that her ex-husband turned out to be a not-so-stable person … It’s surprising to think that Quinn would misread something so glaringly obvious to someone who was a detective.

But I think that’s the beautiful thing about it — we all have these weird blips in our lives where we’re not always proud of what we did, how we thought or our decision-making process. When you end up learning why she ended up falling for her ex-husband and the thought process that led to it, it makes her very human. I think with abandonment issues, you have a huge void in your heart and soul that you’re trying to fill that. Sometimes, when you’re trying to fill that void, you make some grave mistakes. Then, you try to course-correct. This is a moment for Quinn where she overlooks something that she should have seen coming a mile away; but, she was willing to put up blinders to fill that void for a moment.

We have to get into the news of the show ending — back when you signed on, could see yourself taking on this part for many more years?

I was 50-50. When you walk into a show that is entering season 10, you know that it’s season 10. If there was ever a time to end a show, season 10 seems like a sweet spot. I walked in noting that it could be the final season and I was very happy to be a part of it. It’s Hawaii Five-0 — it’s an international hit show. Everybody knows it. My parents know it! To have just a little bit of this under my belt … I am so grateful and thankful.

With that being said, as the season went on and the ratings were good, I thought there was a chance we could get picked up for another season or so … but I wasn’t necessarily surprised when the news of it ending came out. It’s an appropriate way to go out — it’s on a high and the fans are 100% still on board. I know it’s disappointing to them — I’ve already heard a lot of reactions on Twitter and Instagram — but ten seasons is a huge accomplishment and there’s a lot to be proud of. So to all the fans who were here for the ride, whether it be ten years or something shorter, thank you for supporting the show and making it possible.

And for you, what have you made of this experience? I know you’re in Hawaii, but I understand it’s still work and there’s a lot that goes into the show.

Right now, I’m looking out my window in Hawaii and it’s so beautiful. To be honest, this has been one of the easiest schedules that I’ve ever had. When I was on Arrow, we were shooting 14 hours a day in Vancouver, often in the winter, and usually night shoots. It was freezing and raining (laughs) and here, people want blue skies! We very rarely work into the night. I still had time to go home and put my daughter to bed. It was a beautiful job and I’m so thankful that I got to do it.

Even with the show ending, you did get a chance to do some crossover stuff with Magnum PI earlier this season. Depending on what happens with that show, could you see that continuing?

You never know, but Quinn and Rick definitely had a lot of chemistry. It could be fun seeing them get back together every now and then.

Related News Read some more insight now on what lies ahead!

For more from Katrina Law…

Come back following tonight’s new episode! Also, let us know what you want to see from it in the comments. (Photo: CBS.)

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