NCIS Review: Don't Mess With the Great White!

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Compelling as the hunt for the P2P Killer was, myriad tensions between agents and agencies defined last night's NCIS, leaving our beloved department in a state of turmoil.

E.J. Ray. Vance. So many characters bent on tearing apart the team, or at least not letting it function as it should. The episode title, "Two-Faced," was certainly apropos.

This palpable tension and deception, combined with a Dexter-esque serial killer plot, made for a strong, but unusual episode. No killer apprehended; plenty of carnage.

Gibbs and E.J.

Viewers probably felt like Abby, needing a hug from Gibbs after watching E.J. do her thing. Her arrival was more mysterious than negative, but she's clearly made enemies now.

In her first appearance, I actually thought E.J. was cool, or at least had the potential to be. She was eccentric, attractive, and willing to stand up to Gibbs, showing gumption.

Last night, however? This wasn't just a butting of heads. This was an attempt to undermine him however possible, be it lying through omission of blatantly stepping on toes.

As DiNozzo said, you do NOT mess with the Great White.

While E.J. definitely has some claim to the Port-to-Port Killer case, the manner in which she's trying to assert control over it - with Vance's help no less - rubs me the wrong way.

You can't help but wonder if there's more to this soap opera than we even know at this point. Is Vance trying to double down on his bid to catch a killer, or something more?

Of course, Gibbs needs a rival besides the killers NCIS hunts down. It wouldn't be gripping TV otherwise. You have to assume he'll prevail, even against multiple obstacles.

It was great watching him lay the smack down - refusing to leave his desk, telling her to back off Tony, whispering at her in the interrogation room, and trusting Ziva's intel.

But Vance outranks Gibbs, E.J. tells Tony. Ha. Directors come and go, but there is only one Leroy Jethro Gibbs. He may lose a round or two, but this fight is just beginning.

More fireworks between the two are inevitable, and as turned off as I was by her theatrics and the soapy feel of last night's episode at times, I'm excited for the next act.

Sarah Jane Morris' meddling almost overshadowed another high-profile guest star last night. Enrique Murciano made his debut as Ray, Ziva's boyfriend of several months.

Ray on NCIS

CI-Ray plays things a little closer to the vest than E.J. Yes, he basically lied by omission and didn't tell Ziva he's the CIA liaison on the P2P case. But isn't that what CIA agents do?

Ziva’s reaction was awfully severe, even after he provided her with the game-changing tip. His feelings for her seem genuine too. Is it really "over" like Ziva told Tony? Doubtful.

There's too much left to explore with this smooth operator for Ray to simply be out of the picture. His much-hyped arrival was worth it if only to watch Tony awkwardly squirm.

It's interesting that with Ray and E.J. present, Ziva and Tony both interacted with their love interests simultaneously, yet ended up a bar by themselves at the end of the night.

Again, I felt their back-and-forth jealousy bordered on a little too much melodrama at times, but only briefly. Michael Weatherly is comedic gold and can salvage most anything.

Speaking of the scene at the bar, how freaky was that eyeball?

A little campy for NCIS, you could say, but a fun way to leave this story arc hanging. It was clear from the opening moments that this would not be your standard murder case.

A sociopathic killer who leaves no trace and who taunts the investigators with obscure clues? Who lures victims with creepy dolls and is seemingly a step ahead at all times?

As a Dexter fan, I couldn't help but draw obvious parallels. Not what I expected at all going into this episode, but I'm intrigued to see where the hunt for the P2PK goes next.

What did you think of last night's NCIS? Discuss!

Review

Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.6 / 5.0 (133 Votes)

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

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