What was that?
Somebody attempted to out Callen as a Russian double agent on NCIS: Los Angeles Season 12 Episode 11.
It was simple to understand why the humorless DOJ Special Agent Carlson might suspect Callen of divided loyalties, especially when she laid out all his connections to Russia.
Plus, Callen's name is Russian (actually half Russian, half Romanian), but all Commie, right?
All Callen has to do to complete her mental picture of him is to threaten moose and squirrel.
But seriously. If Kilbride can accept Callen with his suspect ancestry, shouldn't anyone be able to?
A couple of disparate threads that were tossed out on NCIS: Los Angeles Season 12 Episode 1 resurfaced.
One was the ancient Russian jet that somehow snuck into U.S. airspace which Callen allowed to be blown up by its determinedly patriotic crewmen.
Callen made a judgment call that allowing two young crewmen who had been shanghaied by the captain to live was more important than anything American intelligence could learn from the antiquated aircraft.
Some in American intelligence, two words that sometimes form an oxymoron when it comes to the Russians, disagreed with his assessment.
One mystery that prevailed was who put the bug that Callen was a double agent for the Russians up Carlson's butt.
Undoubtedly the real Russian agent stashed inside the American intelligence community.
Likely, Callen has once again gotten caught up in a Hetty thing that no one else is privy to.
It came out that Hetty is chasing a Russian asset (in Syria?) which might explain the look she's sporting in those scattered Zoom shots throughout the season.
If he's working with Hetty, that would explain why Callen was back to investigating something that happened months ago.
Callen didn't buy Kaptain Gonchgarov's explanation that he wanted to defect, which was why he created an international incident by hijacking a plane to land on American soil.
His talk, to use the word loosely, with Barinov suggested there was more than Gonchgarov than meets the eye.
However, somebody wanted Callen, and perhaps Hetty, sidetracked, hence the rumor that he was a Russian double agent.
It was hard to tell who was holding who, as Callen toyed with Carlson trying to find out what her game was.
Once again, Callen being all secretive and not keeping his teammates in the loop bit him in the ass. With Hetty gone, he is boss and that's his prerogative. But what's the sense of having a team if you're not going to use it?
But before Sam and Fatima could piece together what Callen was up to, Kilbride strolled in to let them know Callen was being held as a Russian agent. Does he live in L.A. now? And how did he find out so soon?
His interactions with Fatima were a hoot.
Finding Callen in somewhat legal jeopardy was the perfect excuse to send in Martin Atticus Deeks, Attorney at Law. Of course, he has business cards printed up for exactly that occasion.
Siccing Deeks on the straightlaced Carlson was the perfect punishment for her, as he blasted classical music so he and Callen could talk in private.
Perhaps the biggest question is how did Callen talk Kilbride into going along with his verkakte plan?
Why do all Callen's schemes seem like plots from Leverage?
Callen asked to speak with Gonchgarev. So naturally, Carlson tried to move him as far away as possible, leading to his abduction by Callen.
Then there was the hit on Kilbride. Since he's the best part of any episode on which he appears, there was no risk that he was dead.
But for all his grousing, and there's always plenty, I think he enjoys the excitement with which the team gets involved.
And any excuse to bring Kirkin back is a good one. It's been too long since we've seen that pained expression on Deeks' face as he squirms.
The scene when Deeks was forced to model Kirkin's fashion, as Kensi sipped champagne and laughed her ass off, was priceless. After all the drama she has been through lately, that was much needed.
Callen had a multi-layered approach to get Gonchgarov to confess to being from Russian intelligence, with that elaborate tableau at the boatshed, but without success.
Things went as badly as Kilbride feared with the fiasco on the pier that left Gongharov poisoned and Zacha near death.
Or did they? Was Callen's plan all along to convince Zasha that he was a double agent so that she might lead him to the real Russian agent? That certainly appears to be the case.
But is keeping his team in the dark, even on Hetty's orders, a good idea, especially if she's off in another country?
Also, this seems to be bringing Callen back together with Anna on NCIS: Los Angeles Season 12 Episode 12, based on the trailer.
Another thing that isn't clear is who is tailing Callen? Carlson is fairly straightforward so she's likely telling the truth when she says it isn't her people.
There are too many unknowns for Callen to be freelancing by himself.
To follow Callen's journey, watch NCIS: Los Angeles online.
Why is Carlson back so soon?
Who's after Callen?
Did you enjoy seeing Kirkin again?
Dale McGarrigle is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.