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A Slash Friendly Journal
Episode Review Season 9x17 - Need To Know
My thoughts behind the cut.

I knew next to nothing about this episode, in fact the only thing I did know was that several people had it billed as 'a good old-fashioned case episode' and it was indeed that. A jolly good real old-fashioned case with some nice twists and turns and being led up the garden path. I enjoyed it a great deal and found the plot very interesting indeed.

There was some excellent team interaction too, with some nice humour and very in-character antics and exchanges and it was interesting to see the 'new' Probie Ned Dorneget again - and kudos to TPTB for actually making him gay. I did wonder if they were ever going to have an NCIS agent come out and admit to being gay, even if he's not out out to the whole world of NCIS. It felt real and not just a 'oh, look we need a gay character as an agent let's just throw one in'. I thought it came over well.

I liked Dorneget and with Tim having grown so much into the job, we do need to see someone who is green and wet behind the ears from time to time. I did love how he wanted to try to impress Gibbs. Nice little idea of brining him coffee, but as Gibbs said it wasn't coffee - bless him. He did try. What was with the handkerchief though opening the men's room door and pressing the lift button? Don't tell me they are going to thrown in a male Nikki Jardine? That would be foolish. Poor boy leaving his flies open and who has to tell him but the man he's so desperate to impress. But clearly Gibbs has seen something in him, because despite the coffee and flies he did give him a chance.

I thought the interaction between Tim and Dorneget was excellent and I foresee if we do see Dorneget again then Tim will be the one to in effect take him under his wing and help him - because Tim can no doubt remember what it was like to be in his position and be so green and so eager. It felt right, even the not having a pen and forgetting his weapon (but he did have his hand-cuffs) often that kind of humour feels forced and shoe-horned, but it actually worked well. I found it believable, even him borrowing Tim's pen and not giving it back so that Tim was the one who had to ask for it to sign Ava's release.

I also liked what Dorneget said to Tony after Tony asked what Ava was like. He did as Tim said; he didn't lie. He told Tony the full truth about what she was like. The fact he wasn't affected by her beauty, her accent or her sexiness was immaterial; he told the truth. And I liked how Tim said Tony would be delighted by Dorneget being gay as it was less competition - which was also true for Tim as it meant he now knew nothing was going on between Abby and Dorneget. And I liked Tim's own Rule #01 - 'Never lie to Gibbs'. Although I do have a feeling that maybe, just maybe, Gibbs will somehow learn that Ava got away before he told Tim to release her.

It was good to see Tim actually out in the field this week and not just stuck behind his desk all the time.

It was a clever twist to actually make it Ava who was the real bad-lass rather than Agah Bayar on this occasions. Of course once she'd checked out of her hotel and 'run' it seemed pretty obvious she wasn't just the pretty face on Bayar's arm, that she was involved in some way or other. I did like how Gibbs refused to let Tony be the one to go and collect her and the way Tony sulked, it was excellent. Utterly in character of course Tony wanted to be the one to pick her up and make a fool of himself whilst flirting with her and being far less than the suave man he'd think he'd be. Of course had he not been quite so desperately eager to collect her, Gibbs might even have let him go - but then that wouldn't have been Tony, would it?

And why should Abby have called Tony when she had found out who Ava was? Gibbs had told Ziva to find her and meet her, not Tony. But again that was all part of the whole 'Tony obsession with the sexy, British lady'.

Okay, so the 'I want to go to the loo' bit was pretty clichéd and at that point it was obvious something was going to happen to poor Dorneget - even though he did know the protocol of checking inside first. It was actually very good to have her use the term 'loo' as she certainly would have done so. I often complain about Brits and the writing thereof in US shows, but both Ava and our MI5 Inspector were pretty well done this time with believable accents for who they were and the kind of education they would have had. So for once I didn't flinch over the Brits.

I did not see the extra twist whereby Ava was in effect being set up with false information for the Russians coming. Nor that for once it was Bayar who was the middle man - the man who was paid by the Russians and by an American Federal Agency. Are we to assume it was the DIA paying him given they were the main member of the alphabet soup involved with the case? For some reason during the final scene with Gibbs and Bayar I was reminded very much of Trent Kort and his accent. I have no idea why.

It does make me wonder how security is managed in the US when the sister agencies don't actually talk to one another! It's very much playground stuff in a way. Pissing Gibbs off is never a good idea as I'm sure the DIA will learn at some point.

I enjoyed Gibbs and Vance's interaction very much. They seem finally to have settled down and whatever differences they had seem to have been put to one side. I like Vance's style as a director. I like the fact that, unlike Jenny, he has never commented on Gibbs calling him 'Leon', he just accepts it and he's also distanced himself from the team as time has gone on; like Tom Morrow (whom I still miss) he lets Gibbs get on with doing his job and Vance does his.

I thought the conversation in Vance's office (and note how Gibbs now actually knocks, even if he doesn't wait for a 'come in') about Jackie Vance wanting Leon to take time off and have a holiday and Gibbs telling him to listen to him (physician heal thyself, Gibbs *g*) also how Vance commented that when he's either booted out from the job or dies in the chair that Gibbs must not take it. Also I thought him telling Gibbs that he envies him as he doesn't have to get involved with politics - I thought that was interesting and very heart-felt. It does make you wonder if the worst person to become a Federal Agency Director is someone who has been a Federal Field Agent?

I loved the opening Autopsy scene with poor Ducky complaining about how much he hates the whole idea of on-line wedding lists and all you have to do is choose something and it's gift wrapped and everything and you really don't have to do any work. That is so, so Ducky - utterly and totally. And although I do do nearly one hundred percent of my shopping on-line, I do occasionally dislike the fact I can't actually handle the present I'm buying and I have to rely on what it looks like - and I do like to gift wrap myself. It was totally Ducky.

Golly Reardon was good! Not just at what he did on the technical side, it's fascinating and scary to believe that it is possible to kill someone like that - killing by remote control (assuming it is of course), but also on the whole physical outrunning and out-jumping Tony and Ziva. Tony in particular must have felt it given he is a Phys Ed graduate. Of course we knew Gibbs was going to appear, didn't we? As soon as it was clear there was no way Tony and Ziva were going to catch Reardon J and I were just waiting for Gibbs to appear in some way. Now we know why he ran the way he did from the door: to get the car.

That Autopsy scene with Gibbs and DiNozzo was scary and I have to say I felt it was way over the top, even given what Reardon had done. I found it a bit too brutal. I was more than a bit surprised Ducky did go off to get a cup of tea. I know he would trust Gibbs explicitly, but I got the feeling he thought it was out of character too that he condoned such brutal bullying. Even though he didn't say anything and did go, the only small saving grace (as far as Ducky goes and it's a very small one I still think he was wrong not to intervend and it was out of character for him not to do so) is that he clearly wasn't happy - the look on his face confirmed this. I foresee a conversation between Gibbs and Ducky over that scene (okay I foresee it in fanfic *g*). I also knew that Reardon wasn't lying when he said he didn't know Bayar, anyone would have cracked under those circumstances.

The scene made me very uncomfortable. In fact I've never been so uncomfortable during and after a Gibbs method of getting information before. We've seen him hands on before, many times, we've seen him threaten physically and psychologically, but I've never felt so much dislike towards him as I did during this scene. It really did trouble me. Of course it didn't help that Reardon looked like a teenager. I know they threw in the humours moment of Ducky saying 'I'm just going to get a cup of tea, does anyone want one?' and both Gibbs and Tony saying 'yes', so enthusiastically - as the two people least likely to drink tea are Gibbs and Tony, but even that did not manage to make up for what was an appalling, out and out bullying scene.

I did not like Katzenbach, I actually thought he was involved, he was a very good red herring, I thought. Very slimy and sleazy - definitely the type of Solicitor to do adverts, a real ambulance chaster. I did like the scene with him, Vance and Gibbs when he asked if they'd seen his adverts and they both said no.

I liked the bit about Ziva going to give a talk and how nervous she was about it. Again, very believable, it's outside her training, outside her experience so even though she can kill terrorists with breaking a sweat, this was completely different. But she would be the right person to send to do it, she'd do it very well - as she clearly did. I love the fact that she's agreed to go back and do it again.

And we had yet another wee Tim being jealous about Abby with another man after he'd learn Dorneget had been to her place and left his gloves there - and in true Abby fashion she was playing with Tim. She likes him to be jealous. Oh, please, get those two back together, it's been going on for long enough.

I loved the opening squad room scene with Dorneget trying to get Tony's signature for the evidence garage and Tony is true Tony fashion messing around and refusing to give it, trying to put the onus on Dorneget and then Tim with his forgery. That was just the sort of thing Tony himself would do, if he'd thought of it. So very well done.

Abby and her sixteen year old NASA friend was fun - I'm sure Gibbs will agree to the other two things he wanted.

I liked how the final scene the meeting between Gibbs and Agah Bayar answered some questions but left more up in the air. I'm sure we'll be seeing Bayar again - and on a shallow note, he is a sexy bad guy.

I really did enjoy this episode. It definitely had a Season 1 & 2 feel to it with an excellent and interesting case that had twists and turns, some good red herrings, some lovely team interaction and banter.

Favourite Scenes:
- The opening Autopsy scene, so very Ducky.
- The opening squad room scene with Ziva being nervous re: her upcoming speech and the whole Tim can forge Tony's signature.
- Vance and Gibbs in Vance's office talking about politics and Vance taking a holiday.
- Abby and Tim in her lab with Dorneget coming to get his gloves.
- Vance and Gibbs's double act with Katzenbach.
- Abby, Gibbs and Tony in her lab re: her NASA friend.
- Tim and Dorneget's scenes.

We learnt and had some things confirmed too:
- It seems they've decided that Rule #01 is, after all, going to be 'Never screw over your partner' rather than the original 'Never let suspects stay together'.
- At least Rule #10 'Never get personally involved on a case' hasn't changed.
- Tim has his own rules, well one of them: 'Never lie to Gibbs'. I like it.

Minor Irks:
- The whole 'James' Palmer thing. We know Jimmy is not James!
- No Jimmy
- Too little Ducky
- Gibbs & Tony's attack on Reardon in Autopsy - it really made me very uncomfortable.

Pairing of the week:
Tim and Dorneget (gen)

Character of the week:
Probationary Agent Ned Dorneget

Actor of the week:
No one really stood out this week - they were all good.

Storyline: 10.00

Enjoyment: 9.50 (I'm taking .50 off for the Autopsy scene with Gibbs and Tony as they really were out of line)

Tags: , ,
Current Mood: content content

27 Notes or Leave A Note
kytivafan From: kytivafan Date: 29th February 2012 14:09 (UTC) (Link)
I liked 98% of this episode - if it didn't have the autopsy torture scene (calling it like I saw it) and the over the top regressed Tony - it would have been a "perfect" episode.

nakeisha From: nakeisha Date: 29th February 2012 15:24 (UTC) (Link)
I agree with your term re: the autopsy scene.

Tony was fine for me, he's been that way before - so I just saw it as him being in character.
From: proseac1 Date: 29th February 2012 14:48 (UTC) (Link)
I can't argue with anything you've said here. But I find it interesting that in your comments about the autopsy "torture" scene you focus on Gibbs' behaviour. I though Tony was actually worse. He's the one who started pulling open drawers and taunting Reardon about putting him in one. He's the one who, when Gibbs asks about something sharp, grabs the skull saw and waves it in front of Reardon's face. I was appalled. That's not the Tony I know and love. I didn't even recognize him, to be honest.

There, I've said it.
nakeisha From: nakeisha Date: 29th February 2012 15:26 (UTC) (Link)
Because Gibbs was in charge - he has to take the responsibility for what happened. It wouldn't have happened had it not been for Gibbs and he started it by yanking Reardon up as he did when he had a broken collar bone which would have been incredibly painful.

Also it has to be said of course that my focus isn't on Tony as much as on the others. But I out and out blame Gibbs for it.
From: proseac1 Date: 29th February 2012 17:10 (UTC) (Link)
I see your point, but I still found it very jarring for him to behave that way. Perhaps one could say he got "caught up" in the moment from Gibbs' lead? Ultimately, of course you're right, Gibbs bears the responsibility because he could have dialled it back but they actually fed off each other.

Yuck. Hope we never see anything like that again.
nakeisha From: nakeisha Date: 1st March 2012 12:25 (UTC) (Link)
I found it less jarring with Tony than Gibbs for some reason.

Me too. I really hope we never do.
tinlizzie82 From: tinlizzie82 Date: 29th February 2012 15:07 (UTC) (Link)
I agree with almost everything you said and yes, it did have a very S2 feel to it. I enjoyed it very much.
nakeisha From: nakeisha Date: 29th February 2012 15:26 (UTC) (Link)
Can we have more like this, please?
donutsweeper From: donutsweeper Date: 29th February 2012 16:24 (UTC) (Link)
That Autopsy scene with Gibbs and DiNozzo was scary and I have to say I felt it was way over the top,

I agree completely. It made me horribly uncomfortable. It started okay (the showing of the body and implying he'd be in one of the drawers next) but then veered off into NO NO NOT RIGHT with the implied violence.

And GRRRRR on the rules. They'd already confirmed which #1 was actually #1! *sigh*
nakeisha From: nakeisha Date: 29th February 2012 16:53 (UTC) (Link)
From what I'm seeing here and in a couple of emails, the feeling is the same for most people. And yes, you're right it did indeed start perfectly okay with the showing of the body and, etc. but it crossed every line after that.

Of course they had! Really things like that are so annoying.
katje0711 From: katje0711 Date: 29th February 2012 18:47 (UTC) (Link)
I love that they made Dorneget gay! He was really trying hard to impress Gibbs, but seemed to keep stepping in it instead! Poor guy. It's great Gibbs could still see he was a good agent.

I'm wondering if Dorneget has a germ phobia and that's why he was using a handkerchief to touch everything. It would help explain why he hesitated in pressing the button for the 3rd floor.

I knew Dorneget was going to be in trouble when he took Ava to the loo! And I think you're right. I think Gibbs will learn about her escape eventually.

The autopsy interrogation was a bit over the top. I think Gibbs would've held off, if the guy hadn't actually finally come through, but still. It seemed way out of character for him. I did think the tea bit was rather funny, though.

I didn't like Katzenbach, either. He was quite smarmy and smug. And i also loved how Gibbs and Vance hadn't seen his commercial, either!

I agree they need to just get Abby and McGee back together already! Stop playing around with us! I also loved the 16 year old genius bit.

Never lying to Gibbs is a very wise rule!
nakeisha From: nakeisha Date: 1st March 2012 12:29 (UTC) (Link)
And I do like how they did it, it was really just like 'my favourite colour is blue' type of thing. No big deal, which is how it should be. And Gibbs clearly has seen that.

I find it odd they'd do that with another character, to be honest. We've already had it with Nikki Jardine, so to have another one seems odd. And it came out of the blue, TBH, there was no hint of it until he used his handkerchief on the men's room door. Maybe he just knows that some men don't wash their hands! I got the feeling not pressing the lift button was just another of him being awed by Gibbs and trying to impress by just standing there.

I know. It was signalled, but still well done. I think Gibbs will know - Gibbs knows everything!

It was way over the top; I'm still surprised it happened - I would hope so.

Katzenbach was well done really, because he was a good red herring, even though he was not nice.

They really do!

It's the best rule ever.
From: pinkhairnroses Date: 29th February 2012 23:57 (UTC) (Link)
I knew it would be a good one! Frank and George always write good, balanced episodes. And they write great McGee. :D They also wrote Sub Rosa, Probie, Witness, Leap of Faith, Stakeout, Broken Arrow, etc. They're my favourite writers these days.

I read McGee as being jealous, too, and I was happy for even that small bone. Yay!

Loved Dornie and hope to see him again (and again). I REALLY loved McGee calling him Probie. Yay!

I even liked the autopsy scene. They've gone over the top in autopsy before. What episode was that...? It seems that Ducky was involved that time. I want to say Child's Play, but I don't think that's right.
nakeisha From: nakeisha Date: 1st March 2012 12:32 (UTC) (Link)
Ah, I see. It was good to see more Tim.

Bless him - he always is and so is Abby! They belong together.

I hope to see him again too. I think he and Tim will get on well (especially now Tim knows he's not after Abby *g*) and Tim will help him develop.

Gibbs and Ducky have done a couple of two-handers in Autopsy, but not on the physical side. It was all mental with Ducky explaining how he was going to carry out the Autopsy. Had it stayed with just opening drawers and making him think he was going to be put in one, I wouldn't have been as bothered. But it turned physical and nasty physical - Gibbs was abusing someone who had a broken collar bone. It was, to my mind, totally out of line and out of character and the guy could walk on that alone.
alidiabin From: alidiabin Date: 1st March 2012 06:00 (UTC) (Link)
I agree.

Loved Dorgett, and him being gay was presented as such a non-issue.

The autopsy scene freaked me out too. And I had a fanfic idea about it too.

nakeisha From: nakeisha Date: 1st March 2012 12:32 (UTC) (Link)
I love how well they did present him as gay, just so right. As you say a non-issue, as it should be.

I'm still somewhat freaked by it. I hope to write my little idea later.
alidiabin From: alidiabin Date: 1st March 2012 21:20 (UTC) (Link)
Exactly. Sadly it is not the same for a small but vocal part of the fanbase.

I think Ducky would be angry at Gibbs, because it was pretty much torture and torture hits to close to home with him, (that camp he worked in Afghanistan)
nakeisha From: nakeisha Date: 2nd March 2012 13:35 (UTC) (Link)

Oh, no :-( I haven't seen any negative comments - not that I've read many reviews, I must say. Where have people been complaining about him?

Indeed - that is true it was very close to home for him. I have written a quintuple drabble.
alidiabin From: alidiabin Date: 3rd March 2012 07:18 (UTC) (Link)
Yeah, mostly on facebook, they all seem to use religion as an excuse or say they aren't ready to explain gay to the kids yet. I don't think it's that hard to explain "some Barbies like Ken, some Barbies like Barbie and some Barbies like Barbie and Ken."

And besides, I wasn't allowed to watch 8pm tv until I was old enough to know and understand what gay was, I was like 10.

I have a drabble written though it could be friendship or slash.
nakeisha From: nakeisha Date: 3rd March 2012 11:40 (UTC) (Link)
*Shakes head*

That's just crazy. So they are happy to let their kids watch violence, the autopsy scene, see bodies in the process of being cut open, see scenes like the as explicit as they get without actually going the whole way in 'Under Covers', etc. etc. etc. etc. but someone being gay is a no-no. Those people have very strange standards. Anyway, NCIS isn't a family show to my mind.

Mine could be taken as either too - but I think I'll post it as gen.
alidiabin From: alidiabin Date: 3rd March 2012 12:08 (UTC) (Link)

Also, the scene with the kid in autopsy in the same episode, not a kid suitable scene.

I think it it is a 'family show' to a point, as in if you have a family like mine is at the moment with 'kids' who are old enough to not be impacted by some of the scenes, but it is not something you can sit a five year old in front of with the autopsy scenes, sexual innuendo's (didn't Tony refer to the team as Wankers once) etc.

Also isn't it on 8-9pm in the states, I was in bed at 8pm (not asleep usually reading) until I was 12, I certainly wasn't allowed to watch TV, and this was all about six years ago.
nakeisha From: nakeisha Date: 3rd March 2012 18:04 (UTC) (Link)
Indeed it wasn't suitable.

I'd agree with you re: a family like you have, but it's not a family thing for six and eight year olds. And if they are old enough to not be troubled by autopsies and violence then surely they are old enough not to be bothered by a gay person?

Off hand I can't remember if Tony said that, but I do know Ducky has used 'bloody' which whilst being a very mild swear word here in the UK, is considered a very strong on in the US, thus I thought how good it was of TPTB to allow him to say it, because they realised their audience were mature enough to know that Ducky's a Brit and it's a mild term here in Britain. And he's also used 'bugger' - again very British. There are some odd folk on FB.

It is indeed. And me too (which was a lot longer ago *g*)
alidiabin From: alidiabin Date: 4th March 2012 02:26 (UTC) (Link)
Yet I saw few complaints. Sigh.

The lines between family and adult television is getting blurred. My youngest sister is 15 and watches Disney stuff, it's a lot more mature than I remember. Which is going to have some sort of effect. And that Gossip Girl show is marketed at girls who are like ten up and that is not children's television.

(And this whole conversation has sparked an idea for me to research for the academic literature review I have to do. Yay!)

It was back when Kate was on the team. And exactly. Also NCIS is usually rated Adults Only here, so that should be an indication. (The TV ratings here are very liberal)

My parents were 'old-school' parents. Which looking back was rather good because some of my peers attitudes scare me.

I don't want to generalize them because a facebook picture/comment can be deceiving, but the majority of the posters who had something to say about Dornget's sexuality, were white and heterosexual and judging by the use of the word g-d, were conservative Christians.
kanders07 From: kanders07 Date: 1st March 2012 08:00 (UTC) (Link)
This one was a good episode. The torture scene was a little over the top but it worked. Agreed, not enough Ducky.

I also wanted to let you know that I appreciate that you put the reviews under a cut since I don't get to see the episode until Wednesday or Thursday. I really enjoy reading them.
nakeisha From: nakeisha Date: 1st March 2012 12:34 (UTC) (Link)
I thought it was a really good episode (the Autopsy scene aside). Sadly there seems to be very little Ducky these days.

You are very welcome indeed. It would never occur to me not to put them under a cut, it's only polite and good manners not to spoil people. I'm glad you enjoy them - thank you.
aries11 From: aries11 Date: 6th March 2012 14:13 (UTC) (Link)
I like Dornegut's character, but I can't stand his voice! He sounds as if he always has strep throat, and I hate hoarse voices like that. I'm very picky about voices. I never suspected that he'd be gay, but I suppose they were making a point with that: it's really not always that obvious.

Still, if he's gay, then why did Abby have to be coy with Tim? That's just mean and kind of immature. I was hoping Tim would ask Ned what had actually happened, and he'd say something like "I fixed the hinge on a squeaky door." You know, some kind of mundane task that would in no way be enticing.
nakeisha From: nakeisha Date: 6th March 2012 14:38 (UTC) (Link)
Actually, I know just what you mean about his voice - I can't say I care for it. And I too have a 'thing' for voices. Indeed, I wasn't either. I think it was well done.

Because Abby and Tim play this constant game that I honestly don't think they consciously play and will go on playing it until they get back together. Abby's not above making Tim jealous.
27 Notes or Leave A Note