And so old school NCIS continues. This was another great episode that was case driven but also with some personal stuff interwoven throughout. Again (as with last week) the personal stuff didn't over-shadow the episode, it fitted in very nicely indeed.

It was a very good case, although J and I did both guess that a) our Lieutenant Commander and Kaplan were one and the same, b) he was the person who killed Drew, c) when Tim and Tony went to bring Drew in she'd be dead and d) she didn't hang herself. However, it didn't detract from a gripping case and the twist that it was Drew who put the hit out on Brett took me by surprise.

The almost sad part was that I believe totally the reason why Brett 'stole' the money, he did indeed do it for his daughter's future - but then he had to go and kill. Okay, so I guess he had to take the chance because he knew full well he'd lose everything if he confessed to Gibbs about Kaplan, he'd be cashiered and so all he worked for would be taken away anyway. I don't condone what he did, not at all, yes, Drew was stealing from him, yes, she was addicted, yes, he knew he had to stop her, but he shouldn't have killed her. He was a good character, very well written and well rounded and very believable - until I worked out he was Kaplan.

I loved Tony in this episode. Clearly he was fed up of being so mature over the last few weeks and went all out for the idiotic clown the team love - but he was still efficient and productive too and came up with the goods. Now that, for me, is the perfect Tony. I like him being daft, but I also like him being efficient on the job. I really liked his banter with Tim throughout and I loved the 'Daddy, Daddy, it was me calling you' bit.

The whole Abby story-line was a real surprise and I thought Abby was spot on throughout. I can quite see her offering to donate a kidney to a perfect stranger. And finding out she was adopted and yet also has a real brother, that really must have been such a huge, huge shock for her and her reaction was so good and so right. She's right she does indeed have to think long and hard about what she is going to do before she turns other peoples' worlds upside down. My feeling is that her 'baby' brother (Luka strange name, I must say) is Abby's parents' biological son. I thought Kyle and Abby really looked like one another. The role of Kyle was very well cast.

It was typical of Gibbs to get Tim to work on finding Abby's brother and so in character that Tim find him so easily.

It was excellent that it was Tim who knew about about the man Detective Sportelli had arrested and again very much in character that he would be the one to know.

I confess I am (once again) a wee bit worried about David McCallum. I felt it was more than a little out of character for him to remain seated all the time when Abby was telling him about finding out she had another brother. I would have expected him to stand up and hug her. The scene was lovely, but it looked really awkward with him sitting down all the time. I also thought he seemed somewhat subdued in the second Autopsy scene.

It was good to see Detective Sportelli again.

I know people will be criticising Ziva for falling for the 'after you' act - but to me it actually rang true that she would do that. He behaved like a gentleman would do and she momentarily let herself be lulled by him. We've seen other members of the team taken in and doing things that in retrospect and had they had a chance to do it again they wouldn't do. She's not the first to make that kind of error and it wasn't as if at that time she or anyone believed Brett to be anything other than a Lieutenant Commander who worked on the hill and whose life had a contract out on it. I liked Ziva in this and liked her little two finger point to Brett as she left him in the hands of Gibbs and Tim.

There was some excellent banter throughout especially between Tim and Tony, some great humour, a head-slap, a very teamy feel to it, an excellent case, a real solid navy case no less, some red herrings and some really excellent characters - and a puppy!

I really enjoyed this episode, I loved the NCIS family feel it had to it. I am looking forward to finding out in due course what Abby decides to do about her discovery. I just hope it's as well done as this episode was, i.e. it doesn't take over an entire episode or more at the expense of the case.

Favourite Scenes:
- The first squad room scene when Sportelli turns up. And also Abby arriving to tell them about going to the hospital for an interview.
- Ducky and Abby in Autopsy.
- The scene at the rooming house. I thought the landlady was such a great character. So well done. A tiny role, but she really stood out. I loved her 'boss'. A great scene.
- The squad room scene when Tim and Tony both want to phone Gibbs and are 'arguing' about who should phone him and who did the better job.
- Gibbs, Ducky and Sportelli in Autopsy. I got the feeling Sportelli wasn't as used to such graphic descriptions as Gibbs was. It was subtly done, but he did react when Ducky showed him where he'd cut into the neck.
- The scene in Brett's office when Tony calls her to tell her the truth about Brett.
- The final scene at Gibbs's home. I love how he tells her that her parents were still her parents and that DNA isn't what a family is about and how her family (i.e. the NCIS folk) will help her deal with it.

We learnt some interesting things too:
- Ducky has a model of his name-sake and I liked how we got a potted version of what he told Ari way back in 'Bete Noire'. Although I do have to wonder why he had it at work.
- Abby's little brother's name.
- Abby was a cheerleader!

Minor Irks:
- I'd have liked a bit more Ducky, but then for the most part I'd always like a bit more Ducky.
- No Jimmy :-(

Pairing of the week:
Gibbs and Abby

Character of the week:

Actor of the week:
Pauley Perrette

Storyline: 9.75

Enjoyment: 9.75


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