Reaction: NCIS (8×22)

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Annnnd, we’re back with new episodes of NCIS. Anyone else out there watching?

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This one’s called Baltimore because the Port-to-Port Killer (really, that was the best they could come up with?) killed Tony’s former cop partner from … Baltimore. I like to call the episode When Tony Met Gibbs: A Love Story. Not shockingly, when Abby mentioned concern about the fact the Port-to-Port Killer killed someone Tony knew, Gibbs had to say that he knew the guy too. Because, y’know, it can’t be ONLY about Tony. It has to be about Gibbs too. Okay, well, at least it’s not all about Gibbs. That’s something, I guess. I’m not quite sure how they leaped right to “someone’s targeting “our” friends – did Gibbs lose someone to the PtP Killer and I forgot?), when all signs point to Tony. He’s the one who got the eyeball in the glass, and it’s his former partner who’s dead.

But, whatever. I should know by now it doesn’t matter. If it’s about anyone on the team, it’s more about Gibbs. ;)

It was nice to see Tony in action as a cop. This was the Tony of several years ago, when NCIS was spankin’ new – a clown, but clearly competent and in control. And not a player. I wonder if we’ll ever find out what happened with Wendy.

Ducky revealed the typo single knot/double knot thing, which was a slight red herring, considering their copycat wasn’t internal. But then again, not a red herring after all – just a different kind of clue. Troubling that there’s a killer at NCIS. Didn’t they already do a traitor-in-their-midst story a few years ago, which resulted in the death of a PoC female character? Yeah, I’m already not liking this. Heh. It’ll probably be EJ, or David Sinclair (Not his name, can’t remember is name.) I mean, they’ve got the two big traits for villains: color of skin and gender. ;)

Why is it criminals are smart enough to mimic a serial killer and do an elaborate cover for his plan, but they always get caught anyway for something obvious? I know, it’s because our NCIS crew is smar-ter.

I enjoyed this episode. We got smart Tony, concerned team without any barbs traded, Gibbs being magical and all-knowing as always. ;) It would have been nice had it actually been the PtP Killer, but I’m a sucker for H/C and that would deliver more than a wannabe PtP Killer. I also have to say that an episode like this, more focused than standard team fare, I didn’t miss the filler/banter stuff they always pad an episode with. Why can’t the teamy episodes be focused like this?

If Tony was supposedly newly engaged, when Gibbs walked him to the HR/application office and he saw the beautiful woman sitting behind the desk, what was with the player smile?

Comments

  1. sbg says

    PS, I love how de-aging Tony involved a bad dye job and de-aging Gibbs meant combing his hair forward and the use of those instant face-lift tapes. :)

    Didn’t want to keep editing the post. ;)

  2. Robin says

    I also thought it was weird that Gibbs claimed to know Danny. They met in the course of that one case, sure, but Tony’s the only one who actually knew his former partner. Speaking of whom, I spent the entire episode distracted by trying to figure out where the heck I knew the actor playing Danny from. (Turns out he’s the guy who played Dr. Archie on the later seasons of ER.)

    I really hope the PTPK doesn’t turn out to be someone from the new team. I get why the established team is uncomfortable about the flashy new guys invading “their” space, particularly in light of Tony’s relationship with EJ and the fact that he passed up her job to stay where he is. But, yeah, they’ve done the internal mole thing.

    “If Tony was supposedly newly engaged, when Gibbs walked him to the HR/application office and he saw the beautiful woman sitting behind the desk, what was with the player smile?”

    It’s just Tony. He kind of can’t help but flirt. In that respect, Tony reminds me of (Here’s an obscure reference for ya.) Dan Rydell from Sports Night. Both men relate to women primarily through flirting, because they share a need to be liked by people, particularly women, whether they intend to pursue a romantic relationship or not.

  3. sbg says

    Robin,

    It’s just Tony. He kind of can’t help but flirt. In that respect, Tony reminds me of (Here’s an obscure reference for ya.) Dan Rydell from Sports Night. Both men relate to women primarily through flirting, because they share a need to be liked by people, particularly women, whether they intend to pursue a romantic relationship or not.

    But at that point, all we saw about Tony and women was that he was serious in wanting to settle down and had asked someone to marry him. He wasn’t a player then, so suddenly between the end of the case and finding out Danny was a dirty cop and quitting the Baltimore PD, did he lose his fiancee and the desire for a married, settled life?

    It just disconnected for me. Like, they already established long ago Tony’s ways with the women, so they had to stick it in there to segue, but it wasn’t a good segue for me. Danny was the suit-wearing player, was the impression I got.

    It’s always about Gibbs, especially if it isn’t.

    I can’t think of who else it would be. It won’t have much of an impact if it’s Random File Clerk X, newly hired after backpacking conveniently in every location the PTPK has killed. ;)

  4. Robin says

    sbg, But at that point, all we saw about Tony and women was that he was serious in wanting to settle down and had asked someone to marry him. He wasn’t a player then, so suddenly between the end of the case and finding out Danny was a dirty cop and quitting the Baltimore PD, did he lose his fiancee and the desire for a married, settled life?

    I don’t think that the desire to marry one particular person and the habit / urge to flirt with other people are mutually exclusive. There are a lot of happily married people among my circle of friends who still enjoy a bit of harmless flirting now and again.

    We saw a few years ago when Tony’s undercover assignment to seduce Jeanne Benoit turned into a genuine affection that it takes a lot to break down his emotional walls. But even as things turned serious with her, he was still engaging in flirtatious behavior with Ziva and other women he met.

    I don’t actually see Tony as being as much of a player as he tries to make himself seem. It’s just that his default for interacting with women is to turn on the charm. He undoubtedly learned it from his con-man father. I’m not saying it’s a healthy instinct, as such, but it doesn’t seem particularly harmful or malicious either. And I don’t recall if we’ve ever learned why things fell apart with Wendy, but it seems likely that whatever it was had an impact on his romantic life for a good long while.

  5. sbg says

    Robin,

    I think we’ll have to agree to disagree about this particular instance. I read the whole episode as a way, in part, to show how Tony came to be at NCIS and how he came to be the way he is as we’ve always known him. The way they laid it out, regarding women, didn’t work for me*. I never said it was harmful or malicious, but at the same time – his behavior often has that “oh, he’s just a good old boy, he doesn’t mean it” flair that actually can be harmful in aggregate.

    ETA: Meaning, they wanted to get from point A to point F with him, but in doing so kind of skipped right past several other points. B and D. ;)

  6. Robin says

    sbg

    Fair enough. It seems that you’re seeing Tony’s transition to NCIS and the development of his current attitude toward women as being concurrent events. Whereas I’m seeing his behaviors as a preexisting character trait, and possibly one that led to the breakup with Wendy. I think both are valid readings of this episode. It just seems less likely to me that he would undergo such a dramatic shift in personality.

  7. sbg says

    I don’t think we disagree that much, because I didn’t buy the sudden transformation – but the only thing they gave us, really, about Tony back then was that he was quite the opposite in attitude regarding wanting to settle down, etc. So, where we got the joking, movie-quoting Tony back then, we had no thread regarding his perceived womanizing ways that we know about him now.

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