NCIS Review: Casserole Comfort

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While this somber episode didn't complete the Parsa story arc as I'd hoped, it did provide more insight into the family nature of the NCIS team, especially when one of their members is hurting.

Tony & Bishop

NCIS Season 11 Episode 13 carried on where the last previous installment left off: Delilah awakened after surgery to find McGee at her bedside.

Their conversation was short-lived, though, as she had to be sent back to surgery as a result of some internal bleeding. Shortly afterwards, McGee went back to work, despite not yet being cleared by the Navy psychiatrist.

Though he carried a heavy secret, McGee appeared fit and ready for duty. The only clue to his turmoil showed up in his body language: he carried his angst in his neck, which made him appear slumped over, most notably when he walked anywhere. 

Gibbs picked up on it right away and advised him to take it easy. At that point, I had no idea whether he was still in shock over Delilah being hurt in the blast or whether he blamed himself (which as it turns out he did).

We saw yet another side of Tony, who couldn't figure out just how he could help his friend and colleague, so he landed on making him a casserole. I thought that was perfect. He couldn't keep sitting around trying to figure out what to do for him; this was the best he could come up with. Something personal, appropriate, useful and above all, warm.

Yet, there was nothing that could get through to McGee: not Gibbs' constant reminders that he was more important than his job, not Abby's hug and not Tony's casserole. His secret wouldn't allow him comfort of any kind.

McGee wasn't looking for sympathy and in fact tried hard to show himself as being unaffected and ready for work - only because he didn't believe he deserved any kind of warmth or comfort from anyone. He thought it should have been him who was hurt in the blast. It should have been him who was paralyzed and not Delilah.

That's devastating stuff to consider. 

What would he do without Gibbs and his words of wisdom? Gibbs' advice to just talk to Delilah, and in effect just be there for her, was his salvation of sorts: confronting the reality of her horrific injury and holding her hand was far better than avoiding it.

McGee's heartfelt request to Gibbs at the end was tender and gripping.

Boss, would you mind sitting with me?


Final thoughts:

  • Parsa is still in the wind. Finding his driver and learning that Parsa was on a train bound for Miami, but that he was getting off it before the city, brought the NCIS a little closer to the terrorist, but not by much.
  • Abby's discovery that the two bolts that were found in the wreckage didn't match factory parts stretched my ability to suspend disbelief to the snapping point. 
  • Parsa's driver saw himself as somewhat of a moral person, and certainly not a terrorist. Really? I suppose some people have the ability to rationalize their behavior beyond belief too.
  • Tony's flirting with Martinez at the NSA seemed out of place. Granted, he didn't know at the time that Delilah was paralyzed, but still: everyone was concerned about McGee.
  • Did you catch the movie reference between Tony and Sofia, starring Robert Redford and Debra Winger? Tony referenced it out loud. It was the 1986 film "Legal Eagles."
  • Speaking of Tony and Martinez: they are both attracted to each other, yet are annoyed with each other too. What does that mean for the future?
  • Bishop is coming along nicely, learning more about her boss (mostly from Tony) and discovering more about the team as well. And Gibbs has no problem pulling her down from her lotus perch on the desk.


  • There is a new Gibbs rule!  I missed it the first time around.   It showed up when Abby met Gibbs when he was leaving the elevator.  Rule #62: Give people space when they get off of the elevator.
  • Check out our NCIS Round Table discussion for this episode.

What did you think? Were you shocked at the news about Delilah? Is Tony a stand-up guy for Tim or what? Is there anything else he could or should have done for his friend?

Tony has either met the one person with whom he should never have a relationship, or the one person in the world who understands him. What does the future hold for them?


Editor Rating: 4.2 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.3 / 5.0 (94 Votes)

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



What strikes me as funny about how the Ziva fans are complaining that Ellie is taking over the team and her skills are unbelievable, is that this is exactly the way many fans felt about Ziva. The criticism from these fans saying Tony is being diminished by Ellie seem ludicrous considering the fact that once the show became all about the wonders and tragedies of Mossad Barbie, Tony was unable to do anything without Ziva to correct or save him. While I too am saddened that Tony's role continues to be largely irrelevant as Gibbs now turns to Ellie to solve everything, at least Tony isn't being emasculated by Ziva's nasty smug snark anymore, and the writers seem thankfully, to have dialed back his formerly, weekly humiliation scenes.


If Ellie must stay, maybe they can rethink and redo her character. First of all, cut that messy hair. Ziva had long hair; Kate had medium-long; so give Ellie a really short hairdo like Jennifer Lawrence. Then decide if she will be a blonde, in which case, wash those eyebrows off. Whether blonde or brunette, lighten the eyebrows. She looks freakish this way. Then give her some decent clothes, call her "probie" and let her learn the job before running the team. She should be a background person, not the star. It's not the poor actress's fault - she must be reeling from the bad reviews - it is the writers' fault that they let the show go off in a really bad direction.

@ Flower

I know that it's water that helps flowers grow, but in your case, I think a saucer of milk would meet the case.

@ MrWriteSF

Ouch !!!


NCIS was a special show until whoever decided to make it Barbie saves the world. The Ziva and Kate actresses were real women but I quit watching a favorite show. Good luck with that annoying character!


Y'know...I've read all of these comments and noticed something rather "interesting." Most of the posters who can't wrap their heads around the fact that Ziva is gone.....G to the O to the N to the na naaaa na hey hey heyyyy Shaaaaa-loooooom...are women. I won't pretend to know what the motivation is but it makes me wonder how people reacted after Kate was killed and Ziva joined the team. Did people trash her after three episodes too, or did they give her a chance to find her groove with the team? Not making judgments...again, just find it rather interesting.

@ MrWriteSF

That's quite an assumption you make. I liked Ziva but don't care that she left. I know friends and family who liked Ziva but didn't care that she left. We all knew that she was an actress that wanted to leave and we had faith that a show that had successfully transitioned many actors would do it again. Sadly, they failed miserably. I'm of the firm belief that the Bishop cheerleaders are the actress' family and friends who rah-rah her and hope their repeated, "You hate her because she's not Ziva" will catch on. Sorry. Bishop is a horrible character. I don't need to give the laundry list of reasons because if you truly read the comments (instead of automatically making your assumption) you would know why people hate the character that has nothing to do with Ziva. This episode was the first one I started watching and stopped mid way. I'm done. Slowly the rest of my friends and family are going in that same direction. They are holding on for a little longer hoping their faith in the creators and writers pans out but are losing that faith each week. If as many people who are hating her stop watching because of her, I think this would be the first time in history that one character caused the demise of a top rated show.

@ RM

O.K., first up, I am neither friend or family of the actress playing Bishop but unlike you, I'm willing to give her a chance as are the shows producers by keeping her on for the rest of the season. After an initial fall back in ratings, NCIS has rallied and I presume will continue to do so as people get off their high horses and come back to the show. Bishop "is a horrible character" IN YOUR OPINION, to which you are entirely entitled as I am to think she is an interesting and vibrant addition to NCIS. It is hugely unlikely that Bishop's place on the show will kill it off. Sorry but the loss of yourself, your family and friends as viewers will be an immeasurable blip in the greater scheme of things.


I liked last night's episode, but I did have a couple of problems with it. There was no natural break between this episode and the next. Nothing was accomplished in this one. It's like it just fell off. The other thing was Bishop. I do like her, but the writers have her doing the same thing over and over. She's becoming irritating. No surprises. Maybe the writers can have Gibbs put her in a chair at her desk and tell her to stay there and to keep her butt off the floor, tables and desks. I liked the gal that was so much like Tony, that they thought they knew each other. How fun. I would like to have seen Tim shed a tear while sitting with Gibbs, and maybe Gibbs pat his back, squeeze his shoulder, or rub his neck. It would have made the scene more poignant. I loved last week's episode with Borin. She's a doll. I'd like to see more of her.


I also dont agrre with those Zealots. Making threats or calling others baby killers are equally offensive. I however have not read any posts where people have said that Bishop or the actress portraying her should die and so should those who like her. There is a big difference. Someone saying they dont like Ellie and want Ziva back does not equate to being a killer plain and simple. End of story.


Unfortunately Ellie Bishop's quirkiness has now become annoying. Sitting cross-legged on desks, doing her work on the floor while munching on something or another and babbling away a mile a minute. The writers need to slow her down and not make her the focus of every show and the only one, seemingly, who has all the answers.


Cote isn't coming back. Give Bishop a fair chance. I like her. She is so different from both Ziva and Kate.

@ Hege

Well said !


To the people who run this page-it is time to censor Dean and keep him from posting on this site. I respect
everyone's opinion and believe that people have a right to feel what they
feel. However, Dean does not talk
about the episode. All he does is
accuse those who mention Ziva or
Cote of being baby killers. Enough is
enough. Surely you all must have a
way of blocking him because this
goes beyond any human decency.

@ guest

He has a point, albeit disgustingly made... there are zealots that a)Hate Bishop b)Want Cote back and c) Both A&B that quickly turn many a discussion into a virtual cesspool. Not just here - but any Facebook post on the CBS-NCIS page quickly turns to ordure. I'm tired of it.

@ KeithH

What point does he make? He says nothing except that people are baby killers. There is no point. He says nothing else.

@ guest

There are zealots that hate Bishop and want Ziva back and would stoop to anything to get their way. They're just as ridiculous to me as you think Dean is...


Check Twitter #TCA14 & #NCIS for some good stuff from showrunner Glassberg at Television Critics Association showrunner panel discussion... I hope TVF has someone there and does an article on it...

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NCIS Season 11 Episode 13 Quotes

McGee: I should have been here when you woke up.
Delilah: You're here now.

Boss, would you mind sitting with me?