Our NCIS review broke down the latest installment of television's #1 show in great detail.
Now, TV Fanatic staff members Steve Marsi, Matt Richenthal and Eric Hochberger have assembled for their weekly Round Table Q&A discussion of events from this week's episode, "Need to Know."
Join in below, as we analyze DiNozzo, McGee, Dorneget and much more ...
Describe this episode in one word (or two, or three).
Steve: Well-written, multi-layered.
Matt: Team-oriented, entertaining.
Eric: Fun throughout.
What was your favorite one-liner from the episode?
Steve: Any of McGee's many lines in which he tried to instill a take-charge air of confidence and seniority around Dorneget. That was a fun change of pace for our favorite Probie.
Matt: "This time." Guarantees we'll see Agah Bayar again, don't you think?
Eric: "The Buick's out of the garage, Dorneget." Classic.
Steve: Dorneget's "coming out" to McGee. It felt organic. Unlike some shows that would make this a huge focal point of a character or episode, Ned probably wouldn't have even mentioned it if it didn't pertain to the case (being accused of letting Baransky's gorgeousness distract him and all). Once he did, his sexual orientation wasn't a major issue, just a part of who he is, not something that defines who he is. I also enjoyed his subtle crush on Tony.
Matt: Gibbs and Tony's morgue-style interrogation. That kind of tag-team intensity - bad cop, borderline unstable cop - was vintage Gibbs/DiNozzo and added a bit of an edge to a lighter episode. They're tough agents, but rarely does the bone saw come out. I'd have gone out to get a cup of tea after seeing the interlude too, Ducky ... for a few days.
Eric: Besides anything with Abby (which we need more of, Gary Glasberg) ... I liked Gibbs telling Bayar to his face that he was going to take him down. Bad. Ass. With a little subterfuge thrown into the mix!
Do you like Dorneget?
Steve: Totally. I liked his rapport with Tim - who took the guy under his wing even after he thought he'd spent the night with Abby, it's worth noting - and he seems like a genuinely nice fella. He just needs a few post-it notes strewn about to remind him of minor details ... like packing a weapon or displaying his ID right side up.
Matt: Some of his bumbling incompetence was a little overdone - how could you even get to this point in your career if you're that clueless - but yes. He won me over a bit.
Eric: We've seen this guy here and there and he's always been a little incompetent (standing guard, if you can call it that, during Tony Sr.'s interrogation being one recent example), so I was skeptical about him having a significant role in this episode, but how can you not love the guy. I definitely laughed at him going about 0-for-5 in his attempts to impress Gibbs, or even act normal around him.
What, if anything, was out of place this week?
Steve: As some fans have pointed out, can a pacemaker even do that? Four hundred beats a minute? I guess if we accept that a satellite signal can disrupt them at all, why not? Still, a bit of a stretch, albeit as part of a mystery that featured the peeling back of one layer after another and made for what I thought was a top-notch episode overall.
Matt: This may sound nit-picky, because I realize these are not one-note characters (it's part of what makes the show so good). Tony is allowed by be his frat boy sophomoric self at times, and I love his one-liners, but sometimes it feels like we get a different DiNozzo from week to week depending on the writers. It's almost like he exhibits growth, then reverts back. Again, I know it's an ongoing process and totally realistic that he doesn't abandon his juvenile, humorous side altogether, but it feels like one extreme or the other. Just an opinion.
Eric: Ziva's scene at the school was out of place in that we didn't see it! I would've loved to watch her botch some idioms and throw out some Ziva-isms, while still making an inspiring speech, to a group of students!
NCIS team MVP of the week?
Steve: I'll give it to Vance by virtue of having to put up with the bureaucracy. We give him a lot of grief for clashing with Gibbs sometimes, but as Vance himself implied, Jethro has it easier in that he's unbound by politics. Vance tries to be a team player - within NCIS and the entire federal system - even when the conflicting powers that be make that impossible.
Matt: McGee. Yes, he almost blew the case in epic fashion, but it was his first time being a very special senior agent, or at least trying to act like one. Probie handling a probie? Gotta cut him some slack.
Eric: Two words: Ab. By.
Any additional observations?
Steve: McGee's Rule #1. Never lie to Gibbs. What about through omission?
Matt: Fun, complex, with each character playing a role ... despite my minor complaints and desire for somewhat more consistency, it was a solid episode and I hope we see more like it.
Eric: I thought it was going to be Jamie Lee at the restaurant at the end. What a disappointment to see the arms dealer instead ... but a cool way to end the episode with that quasi-standoff regardless.
What's your take on these issues of the week on NCIS? Discuss below!
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