NCIS Review: Prognosis, TMI

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Well... that was a bit of an awkward blast.

The idea of murderous clowns has got to be everyone's favorite nightmare.  NCIS Season 11 Episode 10 opened with one such clown putting a bullet into a Marine. Then things took a turn for the worse.

An Awkward Situation

In their pursuit of the guy who owned the phone found on the dead Marine, the team tracked one of the incoming numbers, which lead them to a hotel room. 

That's where we all witnessed horror number-two of the episode: Tobias Fornell in his skivvies, putting the moves on Diane. My reaction was similar to Fornell's, oddly enough:

Well tie me up and call me Loretta.


You have to love it when the case of the week takes a bit of a back seat to the rest of the NCIS interpersonal dramas. I don't think we've ever seen Gibbs so tortured. How does Fornell not understand that the reason Gibbs is so bad at offering advice (in this situation, at least) is because hearing about Fornell and Diane's sex life is the last thing he wants to imagine? 

I mean, it was cute how Fornell and Diane, in separate conversations with Gibbs, used similar imagery to describe their angst over their resurrected romance, but come on - this is the mostly silent and reserved Gibbs we're talking about. 

And it's not as if he doesn't have a reluctant stake in the whole mess, having been once married to Diane. She accused him of whining, but what I saw was a guy slowly toppling down the staircase of his own sanity, trying to be friends to them both and succeeding at neither, while holding in his revulsion at the whole idea of them being together in a *ahem* carnal way.

Every time the poor guy got home, sighed and threw his keys on the counter or flopped down on the couch, we all knew his day of misery wasn't over. 

The first instance wasn't so bad, with him having to shelter Fornell's daughter Emily for the night. But the second one - where Fornell and Diane wanted his blessing? That was over the top and so unnecessary. You could tell they were sincere, but were they that blind to his pain? 

Evidently, yes. They were.

And speaking of blind, there were two other ridiculously blind moments in the show. 

  1. When Abby came in, all excited and blabbing to Gibbs about the multiple hot messages Diane had been sending to her boyfriend. She's not stupid: how could she not notice Fornell, Diane and their daughter all standing right there in the same room? Comedically, it works but realistically? Not so much.
  2. Bishop did something similar when she burst into the same room with great news before realizing the gravity of the moment... right before Gibbs dropped his cell phone into his coffee. I'm not buying the dumb agent act.

Earlier in the season, during one of our NCIS Round Table discussions, there was a question about our hopes for Ellie Bishop. I mentioned that I hoped she would be someone who would stand up to Gibbs, not in a confrontational manner, but in a strong supportive way. I'm glad to see that this is exactly what happened.

Ellie Bishop isn't looking for confrontation. That's not who she is. At the same time, she has the confidence of her own observations and analysis and she voiced them in direct opposition to what Gibbs had proposed with her plan on how to nab Eddie. And he agreed, which pretty much put Tony and McGee back on their heels.

It's fun to see that they though they all like her - including Ducky and Palmer - they can't quite figure out how she fits in with them yet. And vice versa: Bishop is still trying to parse the group dynamics and doesn't yet have an answer to the question about whether to warn her colleagues when a senior is coming up behind them. She's trying too hard - a fact that Emily was able to relay to her on Gibbs' behalf.

It was good to see Diane again too. She seems to function as catnip to so many guys who are too easily hooked on her. And Gibbs is thinking of forming a club. 

Of all the hilarious NCIS quotes for this episode, this one - about Diane's not-quite-boyfriend's physique - is probably the funniest:

His chest is bigger than Diane's.


All in all, an enjoyable episode. 

What did you think? Will Fornell and Diane's relationship work out? What are your thoughts about the resourceful and quick-thinking Emily? Has your impression of Ellie Bishop changed? What did you think of the case? Were you surprised that their prime suspect turned out to be a Secret Service agent?


Editor Rating: 4.2 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.2 / 5.0 (124 Votes)

Douglas Wolfe is a staff writer for TV Fanatic Follow him on Twitter



12/10/2013 Devils T, It was funny, It was complicated for Gibbs,been caught in the middle, hang in there gunney.


Good episode. Bishop was deffinetely nervous and was trying hard to fit in but at the end she took the ear wig out and thought about everything and realized they painted the van and she saved Emily. I liked Gibbs coming home and Emily being there then when she was argueing with her parents Abby came in talking about the texts Diane sent to her boyfriend and then she realized they were all right there it was funny. I also liked that when Gibbs came home again Diane was there looking for Emily then after she left Gibbs opened the closet and Emily was in it I agreed with her when clearing a house who doesn't check the closet? Can't wait till the next episode.

@ marissa

About that 'analysis' - what kind of crazy mind jump was that, from empty phone to painted van? It was the silliest plot save I've ever seen on NCIS. Did not make sense at all!


I just loved this episode. It was really funny! I like Bishop. Shes funny and smart. I think Gibb wanted her because she has a mind of her own and is able decide what to do in the field without asking him.

Aja bird

I think the writing staff was aiming for a little more humor than they usually toss in. Gibbs/Fornell/Diane are usually funny, but this seemed a bit more "forced" than usual.
As for the new team member, Bishop. I don't mind her. I'll give her a couple more episodes to see how she adjusts.

Sue ann

I think it looks like they are going to be centering on this marvelous new blonde agent with black eyebrows now, rather than dividing time more equitably. I like her less than I did in the first go 'round, and I think her making independent decisions in the field again as she did last episode shows that she is no team player, and has problems with authority. I think the power structure of the casting on this show must be male. Why else would they hire her? And she appears to be Teflon. If Fornell is stupid enough to take Diane back, he deserves what she will do to him. He is sticking his head into a wood chipper with her. When their suspect turned out to be Secret Service, I just started laughing. NCIS, the FBI, an IRS agent (Diane), AND a Secret Service agent? Come on! I love this show, but this was ridiculous. And I have seen quite enough of the ex-Mrs. Gibbs, ex-Mrs. Fornell. Her next visit should be no sooner than season after next. She does not improve upon acquaintance.

@ Sue Ann

Right cuz Gibbs and everyone else for that matter are 'upstanding rule followers who listen to their bosses'. You obviously don't watch NCIS, since everyone has problems with authority.

Sue ann
@ Shane+Vendrell

Yeah, I don't watch it. That's why I own all previous seasons on DVD, well-worn by now, plus all the DVDs of every season of the parent show, JAG. I am as entitled to my opinions as anyone else. I did not like Ziva very much. I loathed Kate. And I don't like this one, the way they are writing her. I have been a supervisor of people much of the last fifty years. Anyone walking into a job, newly working for me, who started disobeying me and making their own rules and telling me how to run my operation when they have been there so short a time that the ink is not dry on their paperwork yet would have been shown the door, pronto.

Sue ann
@ Sue Ann

@ Hilary No, I say that some posters on this site have trouble comprehending anyone who does not slavishly worship at the shrine of Shane Brennan.

@ Sue Ann

Do you even listen to you're self you didn't like Kate Ziva or the new girl and you say that everyone has problems with authority. You don't watch NCIS like at all.


I agree when Bishop offered an alternative to nailing the perp it was more of a suggestion to Gibbs rather than 'wouldn't this way be better'. And the cupcake scene with Tony was a definite adorable moment and a good show of how Tony was matured a bit.

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NCIS Season 11 Episode 10 Quotes

Bishop: I mean, I might have a better idea. Look, Eddie is coming back. If he was ditching his car, there are easier places to abandon it than at an airport. We should put it back and watch it. And when he comes to pick it up----
Gibbs: We grab him.
Bishop: Absolutely not. We follow him, see what he does, where he goes, then we grab him.
Gibbs: Works for me.

Diane: You guys are buddies now?
Gibbs: Yeah. We were thinking of starting a club.
Diane: Yeah? Well watch it, boys. I know something about each and every one of you, that you don't want anybody else to know. And I got a Twitter account.