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NCIS: Los Angeles Review: "Anonymous"

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Lacking the depth and emotional punch of NCIS, the L.A. team always leaves us wanting a little bit more. That said, it's still a lot of fun to watch despite that letdown.

NCIS: LA certainly never lacks for action, lightning-fast plot twists or agents who are easy on the eyes. In each sense, Tuesday night's "Anonymous" was true to form.

The episode opens with a federal agent murdered in a shootout downtown. The deceased was seen with a woman whose husband, a plastic surgeon, is also found dead.

Sam Undercover

Sam (LL Cool J) goes undercover with Jillian.

The woman, Jillian Leigh, is spooked and on the run after we learn her slain husband was performing facial reconstructive surgery on a sleeper cell of Al Qaeda terrorists.

Kensi and Deeks go undercover in a great scene at a posh spa, almost catching Jillian but failing short when Deeks stumbles into the ladies room and gets pepper sprayed.

This just minutes after Kensi disarmed an alarm system from the outside by reconfiguring the wires. As if she weren't gorgeous enough, she's the female Jason Bourne!

Watching these two as partners is really growing on us, especially since she calls the shots. Deeks is a solid cop, but he's gotta work up to the NCIS: Special Ops league.

When the team finally does find Jillian - tipped off by the pregnancy signs - at a former colleague’s home, she tells the team she knew nothing about a terrorist connection.

Maybe so, but she's the only one that can identify the terrorists' new faces. Can you really have that sort of procedure done? Would it alter your face so it's unrecognizable?

At least in the world of NCIS: Los Angeles, you can. Sam almost apprehends one of them, only to watch him plunge to his death. That leaves three cell members at large.

To make matters worse, material to make Sarin gas is found in a storage unit linked to the group, and chatter online indicates that the target date may be ... this evening.

Callen and Kensi

Callen and Kensi clean up nicely.

The terror cell is planning an attack on the Queen Mary. By connecting with Jillian and revealing he has kids too (!), Sam tells her she must help them save hundreds of lives.

Hopefully the writers explore more of Sam's past and personal life going forward, because that was an intriguing reveal. Does he see them often? What is the story there?

Watching the team undercover at the Queen Mary event was cool. The black tie flair gave it a nice touch, a lot different than the gritty undercover missions we typically see.

Once the terrorists spot Jillian, they enter full attack mode, but the agents chase them down and thwart a catastrophic attack after the obligatory, pulse-pounding shootout.

Many episodes seems to end in such fashion. It's a good thing the ratings are high, because the budget likely is too. Not many shows have this kind of big-budget film feel.

Another strong installment overall. The characters are beginning to develop more in this second season, and the writing is solid. It may never be NCIS, but that's okay too.

What did you think of last night's NCIS: Los Angeles?

Review

Editor Rating: 4.0 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.8 / 5.0 (26 Votes)

Steve Marsi is the Managing Editor of TV Fanatic. Follow him on Google+ or email him here.

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always love your review, always :) keep it coming okay. however, i AGREE with Terrie. "stop pointing out what it is lacking and how it is not as good as NCIS" and "let NCIS LA stand on its own merits, and judge it on that."
have a nice day :)

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The only thing that I found impressive was that somehow no one knew Sam had kids (yes, plural) except G... But, is it just me, or does Sam seem like a black, younger version of the original's Gibbs? I mean, he HAD kids, he's exMilitary, and only reveals stuff when absolutely necessary to solve stuff?

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i wasn't as impressed with this episode as others. as you point out, it is no NCIS, but it is a very different show. i would really like it if you could stop pointing out what it is lacking and how it is not as good as NCIS. i enjoy both shows, although nothing can ever touch the original. let NCIS LA stand on its own merits, and judge it on that.

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