Tony got poison oak. Tim revealed he was a tap dancing prodigy. Jake's hotel got blown up. And Abby's doled out secret rings on NCIS Season 13 Episode 6.
Below, TV Fanatic panelists Christine Orlando, Kathleen Wiedel, David Taylor and Douglas Wolfe discuss much of the above and more on this week's NCIS Round Table. Ready to join in the debate?
How would you describe this episode in a few words or a sentence?
Christine: That’s what family does.
Kathleen: Family comes first.
David: Like it or not, we're family.
Doug: Rule #2 - always wear gloves at a crime scene.
What was your favorite scene or quote?
Christine: I liked Ellie realizing that seven minutes was the difference between life and death for Jake because life really is that fragile and you need to hold onto it for every second you get. I also appreciated that both Gibbs and McGee were there for her. This team really is a family. (Honorable mention for having Gregory Harrison play the Captain. I’m a big fan of his.)
Kathleen: My favorite scene was when Gibbs comforted Bishop in the elevator, and she finally just embraced him. Bishop had been fairly stand-offish with everyone prior to this, so this release was exactly what she needed. My honorable mention goes to that moment when Gibbs is leaving Abby's lab and he pulls up the "trick" bowl just to make her happy.
David: OK OK....I got a case of "eye sweat" during that last scene, but honors also to McGee's heart-to-heart with Bishop; I think that's what made her decide to stop the elevator and "not talk about it" with Gibbs.
Oh...and the binary talk appealed to my inner geek; I hope we get enough information to decipher it.
Doug: I too loved the binary thing. The writers had to know that geeks everywhere would obsess over something like that. I hope someday they pick it up again and run with it (this time with decipherable code).
Honorable mention also to the elevator scene. That needed to happen, and I'm glad Gibbs was there so she could hug him.
What, if anything, didn’t work for you?
Christine: Much like Tony, I wanted to see McGee’s tap dancing video. You just can’t tease us about something like that and then not show it!
Kathleen: Has anyone suggested that Bishop and Jake maybe, I don't know, visit a marriage counselor? You know, work out their problems... like real people do?
David: This seems like a bit of a cop-out, but Tony's STILL doing the "obnoxious big brother" bit with his peeking at McGee's things. Isn't 12 years enough? How old is he again?
Doug: If Bishop and Jake need a marriage counselor (and I agree they do), then McGee and Delilah are due for one as well. They're not married but their couples' problems need some ironing out. There's poison in there.
I emphatically agree with Christine on the tap dancing thing. Good stories will show you the damage, not just talk about it. NCIS has a bad habit of merely talking when they should show.
Will Bishop and Jake be able to communicate and keep their marriage together?
Christine: I hope so but I still think it’s up in the air. It was easier when they both worked at the NSA and could share information. Now they have to keep one another in the dark and I think it will continue to be a strain on their relationship.
Kathleen: Absolutely, I hope their marriage survives. It would be just too easy for the writers to kill the marriage as a cheap way to open up Bishop for other relationships, as if married people are totally boring or something. I challenge the writers to impress me by having the two of them struggle through the adversity that Christine mentioned and persevere rather than just give up.
David: I think so. I think this "near miss" will motivate Bishop to confront the difficulty head on. For most of the show's run, all of the principal characters are single (except Palmer who got married not too long ago) so I'd like to see another married character in the mix; I think it's more relatable to viewers.
Doug: I like your thought on this, Kathleen. It would be a challenge for them to stay together. It's hard when they have to keep so much stuff secret from each other; stuff that involves their safety. I hope they do stick together. I mean they obviously love each other a great deal, or there wouldn't be such a huge angst between them.
The question is: how do you communicate when your work says you must keep silent on some things? That's a tough one.
What are your thoughts on Delilah and McGee?
Christine: For all these two have been through, Delilah and McGee’s silly fight was troubling. Delilah came across as cold when she wanted McGee to ditch his stuff and implied she, and her stuff, were more important. There was no reason to be so petty. For as smart as these two are, haven’t either of them ever heard of renting a storage unit?
Kathleen: I guess I'm more charitable than Christine. As Gibbs said, they need to compromise. This boils down to figuring out whether you value your relationship more than your things.
And we've seen McGee's apartment before, and he is something of a pack-rat. Maybe a little pre-spring cleaning wouldn't hurt, especially since Delilah is wheelchair-bound.
Honestly, though, it's tough to let go of things that have sentimental value, but it's likely that at least some of that stuff could make someone else out there very happy. Perhaps he should try eBay? Or do what my mom does, and deliberately have some one else take care of the getting rid of stuff while he's not looking.
David: I'm with Christine and Doug (in his review); saucer of milk for Delilah. She softened up later, but her knee-jerk reaction was spiteful and unnecessary.
Doug: If ever there was a couple in desperate need of counseling it's these two. I don't trust Delilah's resolve when she assures him they'll "face it together". That's just blather that means nothing when the heat is on again. If she's going to continue throwing her unwinnable snipping nonsense at him in the heat of anger, then there's no hope for them as a couple.
Don't get me wrong: McGee has his issues too. That's why I think they need counseling.
Join us next week for a discussion of NCIS Season 13 Episode 7!
Douglas Wolfe was a staff writer for TV Fanatic. He retired in 2016. Follow him on Twitter.