It's like the storylines are on a loop.
Joelle, Callen's devious ex-girlfriend, was back, as was another rogue group on NCIS: Los Angeles Season 9 Episode 9.
Joelle claimed to have been kidnapped, but then escaped, using a collar tab from a dress shirt, then a handgun. That's pretty good since she was handcuffed at the time.
Callen didn't believe her. Sam didn't believe her. Mosley, who didn't even know Joelle, didn't believe her either, based on the reports the team filed.
Who can blame them? After all, Joelle has proven to have, at best, a distant relationship with the truth.
It turned out that Joelle was telling the truth, at least her understanding of it. It didn't help that she kept leaving out small details. Yes, she was still with the CIA, but only technically, since she was on suspension pending an investigation.
So, she left that rogue CIA group stalking NCIS only to still be under suspicion months later? No wonder she was content to be a soccer mom.
The ironic part was that her husband's fling was the person who was monitoring them, and Joelle had been bugged without even realizing it.
Joelle had nowhere to go for help. The CIA had suspended her, and she thought, incorrectly it turns out, that she was being pursued by that rogue CIA faction.
Callen, understandably, had the hardest time trusting her. After all, she burned him good. She was supposed to be his bridge to some kind of normalcy.
Instead, Joelle got the normal life, with a husband and son who had no idea what she did for a living. And Callen naturally resented her for that, as well as for using him.
Still, the sniping back and forth got old really fast. But I suppose it's the only kind of therapy to which Callen would agree.
Everyone had Callen's back, and so was distrustful of Joelle as well. Everyone, that is, but Mosley, who still seems to have no one's back but perhaps her interior designer.
Didn't that office send the wrong message? "I'm the boss, and you only can speak with me after you've begged entrance."
Only Harley seemed to be immune to this, perhaps because she has at least some inkling of Mosley's personality.
Hell, the whole investigation would have been a scratch, if a firefight hadn't broken out right after the squad started surveilling the Manticore building. Mosley was ready to call it off at an arbitrary deadline, rather than following it through to the end.
And that's despite team members in danger both at the warehouse and all over the Manticore property. I'm still fuzzy whether the gunmen were attacking just the NCIS team, or if they were after the "Syndicate" members as well.
In the end, Callen and Joelle let everyone think she was dead. She did the right thing by leaving her family to keep them safe. If she's dead, they can't be used as leverage against her.
But the downside was that Joelle would be back. Not only that, but the "rogue group" storyline lives on. It's just a different group and composition. How that will ultimately affect NCIS has yet to be determined.
Didn't we get through this on NCIS: Los Angeles Season 8? Apparently not.
It's a bad sign when the only progress made on any ongoing storyline was Mosley's office renovations.
Kensi and Deeks' wedding plans did come up. Unfortunately, it was in the form of Deeks' spouting psychobabble while analyzing Kensi's dreams. So, we're still nowhere on this front.
Hetty's Vietnam adventure wasn't mentioned. I thought that when AJ Chegwidden returned on NCIS: Los Angeles Season 9 Episode 8, things would accelerate on that front, but no.
Also, there was little about how Sam was coping with Michelle's death, other than him fretting about his boat.
Then there's Callen's extended family: his father, his half-sister, and nephew, even just the kid Finn he took under his wing. And where's Anna whenever Callen's house is visited? Lots of story possibilities, but very little being done with it.
I hate to suggest this, but maybe it's time for an Eric spotlight. As an effort has been made to establish Harley, Eric especially has been getting short shrift. He's my least favorite character (except, it goes without saying, for Mosley), but I believe he deserves some time.
To check out the glacial character development this season, watch NCIS: Los Angeles online.
Weren't you hoping Joelle was gone for good? Do we need another rogue organization? Is Mosley ever going to get the LA way of doing things? Comment below.
Dale McGarrigle is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.