This will concentrate more on the Gibbs/Ducky, Gibbs and Ducky aspects than anything else - sorry about that for non-G/D fen who might read my reviews. There were some other fleeting shippy moments that I spotted (Gibbs/McGee Gibbs/Abby, Gibbs/Ziva, DiNozzo/Ziva, DiNozzo/McGee). But really I do feel that it was more Gibbs/Ducky ship-heavy this week than any other pairing.
A very powerful, intense episode. Very political and religion based, quite a
brave venture in many ways. Most definitely not run-of-the-mill. And yet again
we have a real NCIS related case; not one that just happens to be thrown in to
give NCIS a reason to investigate. That alone gives it high marks, IMO.
Obvious bad-guy, but then it's a rare episode when I don't 'spot' them immediately. I knew he was involved as soon as they met him. But as is usually the case it doesn't spoil my enjoyment of the episode.
Jimmy - yay! I always enjoy Jimmy - we need more Jimmy. He should be a regular by now, not just a guest star.
Interesting that the FBI guy wasn't Tobias, but fun that he was once trained by Gibbs. A great scene in Jenn's office with her looking on as they got re-acquainted.
So Ziva is doing film studies? Or is she? She's not as it turns out, she' reading a book instead. But it made for some fun scenes with her and Tony bantering about films and it stopped short of going OTT.
Cute scene with Tim and his extra large mug. Is he planning on giving one of those to Gibbs? But that would be hard for him to carry in one hand, so maybe not. Plus, far, far too easy for the likes of poor Jimmy to kick over.
Cute Abby and Gibbs scenes. I loved the way Abby was talking about her machines as her children and Labby. Oh, and the bubble wrap as an early-Gibbs-warning system - only Abby could come up with that one. And he tells her she's his favourite (which we all know anyway, but of the children, of course. Ducky is his favourite-favourite).
Nice boat scene - but where is Tobias? I want Tobias *sulks*
Ducky instructing - I love it when he does that and shares his great knowledge.
So Ducky does think Jimmy will make an excellent ME - we knew that (and haven't we also been saying it in our stories for quite some time now? *g*)
There were some lovely Gibbs/Ducky scenes - lots of conversations with their eyes, looks, closeness. Personal space, gentlemen? Oh, wait, you don't know what that is, do you? And also some less than their usual out-and-out friendly scenes when they came close to being at odds. In fact Gibbs did finally resort to pulling rank and 'I'm your boss' over Ducky. And we have another Ducky-grabs-Gibbs moment - lovely.
Poor Ducky. He was so torn between honouring the wishes of the religion and finding the murderer and thus placating Gibbs - and of course for Ducky finding a murderer is very important too. He certainly argued well and passionately with Jenny and for the most part Gibbs let him and Jenny argue whilst he just followed along. It couldn't have been easy for him, he must have been puzzled by Ducky's refusal and objections and not really understood them.
And we learnt a little more of his life. What an awful experience for him as a volunteer ME for the US Task Force in Bosnia in 1993. Forty-four autopsies in five days, most of them on children under twelve, carried out even though their parents begged him not to do them. So dreadful. Obviously that was one story he had never shared, even with Gibbs, which would make sense; most of his stories do have a lightness about them. This kind of things is something he wouldn't want to talk about/remember (not that he'd ever forget) very often. And it was then that Gibbs understood exactly why Ducky had a problem with doing the autopsy. You could see that he really felt for his friend and understood and at that moment, especially, he too must have been torn between duty and friendship.
Clever Ducky too, finding a way around the whole situation of doing an 'autopsy' without doing an autopsy and thus violating the believes of the Marine and his family. So the doctor at the hospital owed Ducky a favour and seemed glad to be able to repay it. The scene between Ducky and Jimmy whilst they were preparing for the scan and then MRI was very well done and Jimmy's role was an excellent one. Again not a nice safe, gentle, all-for-one scene, but more of what must be reality. Kudos to TPTB for playing it that way. And a needle is found - it 'leaps' out of the body. Clever idea. Nasty too - untraceable in the blood stream poison.
A very moving scene in Autopsy attended by Ducky, Gibbs and Jimmy with the family and friends, again moving, powerful. And another G/D moment when Gibbs asks Ducky if he's okay. Even then two minutes later he goes into 'bastard' mode when he does his pulling rank bit and won't let the body be released.
Gibbs telling the father that he German, the Recruiter, is his. Poor father thinks he killed his son, but he didn't, as Gibbs told him.
And yes, it is the Personnel Officer and he thinks Gibbs is going to get him a Solicitor? I think not.
DiNozzo (actually daring to interrupt Gibbs during an interrogation - he didn't look too happy about doing it, a tad 'scared' methinks. But as it was Ducky who asked him to (and Ducky's information was very important) he did it: "Ducky needs you, boss". And Ducky confesses to having got it wrong: Abdul was dead before the gun was fired. But that won't stop Gibbs; nothing can when he puts his mind to it; when he's determined to right a wrong and bring someone to justice. And this was no exception. He threatens, except as we know Gibbs doesn't threaten he means what he says, the 'I didn't inject them, I was just the middle-man personnel officer and naturally he gives up the German.
But the German is already dead. And at the scene are Abdul's effects - but they are not. Once again Gibbs allows justice to be served in a way other than via the Courts.
A very fine episode. One of the best of the season.
A very rough rating.
Story Line: 9.50
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