May I start by saying, that the Gibbs and Ducky 'antagonism' has gone on long enough. I really feel that we can't have more than two at the most episodes and really only one before something gives. (More on the whole Gibbs/Ducky thing as the review progresses).

Also, how blatant is DPB going to get with his playing with the pairings?

- DiNozzo/McGee was really pushed on us this week with the Brokeback Mountain reference and the whole sunset thing. And the shirt.
- McGee/Ziva in the lock-up was certainly more than hovering.
- DiNozzo/Ziva with the bit about her blowing on the ring he was holding, also more than just a little obvious.

And for Jimmy/Agent Lee in Autopsy!!!! Well that wasn't just blatantly hinted at. I confess that surprised me; when Ducky met her in getting out of the elevator and she told her obviously false story about shredding his Autopsy report, my mind didn't turn to a liaison between her and Jimmy, but to her attacking him or something; to her being not all she seemed (and she wasn't, it just wasn't in the way I was thinking).

The case was less obvious this time; it was obvious that the Real Estate Agent was involved somehow with our Lance Corporal's death, but the final twist did actually surprise me. What didn't surprise me was the third fiancée turning up - hackneyed, I felt. But never mind.

So we nearly have our Gibbs back. We have his sans moustache - doesn't he look better? - and we have him being sarcastic and doing the Gibbs's glare and definitely being more in your face, and the coffee thing, him appearing so silently and various other Gibbs-isms. However, we still don't have the head slapping Gibbs, nor do we have Ducky's Gibbs back.

All in all it was quite Ducky heavy this week, which was wonderful. It was good to see so much of him, and to have him rambling away and also to have him so heavily involved in solving the case, very clever how he broke the guilty party and how he used McGee and his new toy to do so.

Methinks that he's now trying a new approach with Gibbs, him being nasty to him and making bitchy comments hasn't worked, so now he's trying to be even more rambling than usual, he's taunting Gibbs into interrupting him; he wants Gibbs to interrupt him.

He's also still dropping in the odd comment or two in reference to the 'old Gibbs', like Gibbs being at home so early. Also his comment about the fact that the Finn could have been whacked with a baseball bat or a golf club, was deliberately and carefully chosen. I also think him choosing to interrupt the interrogation was again carefully calculated. And interesting that Gibbs threw at Ducky 'your gut', where this time Gibbs's own gut failed him; he thought the woman was the guilty party; Ducky knew she wasn't.

They are at least not avoiding being within six feet of one another now and they are starting to look at one another, and not just when the other isn't looking their way. To me it seems as though they do both want to make up, but Ducky seems determined not to make the first move; for his own reasons, he's still trying to wake Gibbs up, and Gibbs doesn't seem to know how to, nor does he want to back down. But it has to happen soon; it can't go on like this.

Interesting that when Gibbs talks about Ducky he uses 'Ducky' even if he's still using 'Doctor' and 'Dr. Mallard' to his face, but when Ducky, who is still managing to have several involved conversations with Gibbs and not call him anything, talks about him it's 'Special Agent Gibbs' or 'Agent Gibbs'.

All of their conversations and interactions, be it face to face or over the phone, this week were a mixture of sizzling emotion, from hurt and antagonism through to the fact that there is clearly still a lot of deep love and affection on both sides; If there wasn't they wouldn't be so distant and still at times bitter with one another. There's also still some confusion, on Gibbs's part, certainly.

I thought Ziva's comment about Ducky not being in the observation room for a long time was a telling one. It seems to me to imply that when he does appear, it isn't only to observe the interrogation, but to observe his Jethro. And he was doing both this week; him interrupting the interrogation was, as I said above, deliberate, and not just to try to save the woman from Gibbs's wrath, but I think to try to connect with Gibbs for Gibbs's sake as well. That argument in the corridor, said so much; Gibbs was angry with Ducky for interrupting him and for daring to say that Gibbs was wrong.

Their whole current relationship and interaction is fascinating on a psychology level, it really is. There are so many layers to it, but . . . I do think it's time we had our guys back.

There was a good balance of emotions throughout the whole episode and some good humour throughout.

The bit about Ducky and his preferring a shag was really amusing - and the look Gibbs gave him was interesting too.

I also really liked the 'game' Ducky played on DiNozzo over DiNozzo wanting to see if Finn was more than adequately endowed - very clever Ducky, a tad evil too, but you could see that he enjoyed doing it. And really after five years of doing the job and being a cop before that DiNozzo should know about soft tissue being eaten first.

Abby was great, but then Abby always is. She liked Gibbs's moustache :-) The bit at the end when she was saying she should go up to the squad room more often was great, her excitement over the chick fight was fun to see, as was her lab scenes.

Not too much of Madam Director this week (thank goodness), and I'm glad to say that she was back to me wanting to slap her. On the one hand she goes on about keeping their relationship professional and then out of the blue she brings up Shannon and Kelly and we harp back to Paris - bitchy. So maybe the whole Paris thing and Jenny's priorities and the job she had to do in Europe, hasn't been put to bed. But please no more flashbacks. And her comment about 'need to know basis' was intriguing, that's the second week running she's done that to Gibbs.

It was lovely to see Jimmy, and he was so Jimmy at the beginning and I loved the way that he was the one to give Gibbs the information about how long Finn had been dead, whereas Ducky was still working on trying to goad Gibbs into snapping at him. I have to say that I felt the bit with Agent Lee was unnecessary, I do hope that the show isn't set on going that way. It also, to me, seemed very OOC.


Definitely on a par with Escaped.

Storyline: 9.50

Enjoyment: 9.50

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