NCIS New Orleans Round Table: Vigilantes and Pointless Relationships

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Everyone knows that the justice system is flawed, that sometimes innocent men go to jail, or worse. But is vigilantism any better?

The team discovered a series of vigilante murders in NCIS: New Orleans Season 1 Episode 18, and they offered up their opinions on that sort of justice... and now it's our turn to add our own thoughts on the subject.

Then, of course, there was that little matter of Brody's past love life coming to light with the unexpected appearance of her ex-fiancé.

Join TV Fanatic Round Table panelists Doug Wolfe, Amanda Wolf, David Taylor, and Kathleen Wiedel as they get the conversation rolling with questions of vigilante justice, the merits (or lack thereof) of Brody's ex, and more! Be sure to the comments section below to add your own opinions.

NCIS NOLA Round Table 1-27-15

Mama T. thought that they were getting justice through the deaths of the men on the mural, justice they were denied through conventional means. What do you think about what they were doing?

Doug: For all her moral standing, Mama T. had to know that two wrongs don't make a right. As she seemed to be the ringleader of the group, those other deaths are partially on her. Of course, she never ordered the guy to carry them out, but she provided tacit approval, which was all he needed. There's no law against that as far as I know. Her conscience should have pricked her, just the same.

Amanda: I hope that her conscience was pricked. It was a fine line she was walking the whole time.

David: Well, I'm all for seeing justice done, but I didn't like that "taking care of our own" also meant "taking the law into our own hands." Also, I would have thought that her tacit approval could be considered "aiding and abetting."

Kathleen: As I mentioned in my review, death is the one punishment for which there are no take-backs. You can let someone out of prison, but you can't let someone out of death. The problem with any system of justice is that sometimes mistakes and errors are made: in this instance, Mama T. was wrong about the identity of the man who killed her son, thanks to a faulty witness identification.

With one single person acting as judge, jury, and executioner, how is it surprising that this chain of events nearly led to the death of an innocent man?

What did you think of Brody's ex-fiancé, James? Would you like him to make a return appearance?

Doug: No, not really. It's hard to get enthused about pointless relationships. They're too different from each other – and both of them know that those differences make it impossible for them to be happy with each other.

Amanda: I didn't really think they had a lot of chemistry. I understand that there is a different side to Brody that we haven't seen, but I just didn't see the chemistry. I am not enthused about the idea of a helicopter love interest who will swoop in to spoil Brody's relationships.

David: Nope. Apart from the incessant texts, I don't think he tried very hard, or if he did, it was more "mechanical" than "emotional." And for him to pull the "if the situation were reversed" trope sealed it for me. Na na na na...hey hey hey...good-bye. By the way, did anyone really think Brody was alone in bed when LaSalle called her?

Kathleen: I'll be perfectly content if James never comes back. Amanda brought up something very interesting, I think, from a viewer's perspective: it's frustrating to have a character (especially one that's never been seen or even mentioned before) suddenly appear out of apparently nowhere just for the sake of adding relationship drama.

Admittedly, Brody's an intentionally enigmatic character, but that doesn't make it any less annoying for me. In terms of James's character, I agree with Doug that Brody and James would probably never be happy together in the long term. James seems more interested in feeding his own immediate desires.

Brody's love life is complicated by the appearance of ex-fiancé. What are you thoughts there?

Doug: James represents only one layer of the Brody onion – I get the sense that there's a lot more about her. LaSalle's observation that her reticence in responding to James' texts just made him more interested in her goes double for her team as well. The more she clams up about her personal life – which is her right –the more interested LaSalle is, and by extension Pride as well. I wonder if she'll always remain the mysterious woman in the group.

Amanda: I agree, there are clearly a lot of layers to who Brody is, all of which I have very much enjoyed so far. I don't like that her life is complicated by James who swoops in and out of her life conveniently. They were engaged once and it doesn't seem like his life is going to change so if she wants to make a decision she should.

David: I'm with Amanda. I'm not entirely sure what that last kiss was gonna lead to, but if she truly wants done with him, she shouldn't lead him on in any way, especially if things are going well with the good doctor. As for peeling back the layers, I kinda like that the writers have done that slowly, yet with some "OMG" moments (e.g., her late twin sister).

Kathleen: It seems almost strange that Brody is the one out of the main trio we know the least about! I totally agree with the points David made. We don't want to know all the secrets about our characters before the first season is even over!

Highlight a scene or quote that stuck out for you.

Doug: I really enjoyed Brody's quip to Plame: "don't you have servers to upload or motherboards to crack?" I found that hilarious.

Amanda: I enjoyed Brody being mysterious about who she was talking to the whole time. I really enjoyed Pride and LaSalle wondering what was going on.

David: I don't know why, but LaSalle's face as juice-fasting Sebastian smells his cinnamon breath was comical.

Kathleen: I laughed out loud at the Brody line Doug mentioned, so I feel compelled to mention Plame's response to Brody: "There's so many things wrong with that sentence, it hurts." I grew up in a family of computer geeks, so I know pretty much exactly how Patton feels!

Was there anything about this episode that just didn't work for you?

Doug: We didn't get to see much of the killer himself. We never got to hear his motivation for what he did – other than Mama T.'s vague generalizations about the loss he's suffered in his life.

Amanda: I agree with Doug on this one. We never got to hear the killer's motivation for why he did it, which I think would have made the story more compelling.

David: I agree with Doug and Amanda. However, as I alluded to earlier, I didn't like the premise – a transient is somehow "prompted" to carry out vigilante justice while the "wronged" parties get to keep their hands clean seemed a bit distasteful, especially since the perp had already lost so much and was homeless.

Kathleen: I'm with you guys, but I also felt frustrated with Brody's apparent two-timing on Sam Wilkins with her ex-fiancé. It made her come across as dishonest (with both Sam and herself) and cheap (her ex shows up, and she practically falls into bed with him). It might not necessarily be bad writing, as such, but it makes it very hard for me to respect her character.

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NCIS: New Orleans Season 1 Episode 18 Quotes

Must be tough, Brody, torn between two lovers!

LaSalle

Brody: Don't you have servers to upload or motherboards to crack?
Plame: There's so many things wrong with that sentence, it hurts.