NCIS: “Who do you think you are, Sarah Palin?”

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November 11, 2009

3:32 PM

This week’s episode was definitely one of my favorites so far this season. Though there was much influence on the case itself this episode, the writers did an absolutely fantastic job of balancing the case-related drama with great character moments. All of the characters, Tony in particular, were on fire, their one-liners sizzling and their interactions priceless.

The case in this week’s installment of “NCIS” was completely intriguing. Oftentimes, I find myself distracted from the case by the antics of the show’s characters; tonight, however, I was fully engaged in what was happening. In this episode, two competing joggers (Army vs. Navy, of course) stumbled upon a dead body in the middle of the forest. I know, sounds kind of boring and kind of like we’ve seen this storyline before – but that’s when things get really interesting. The team shows up to the scene, accompanied by a surprise visitor, Director Vance. He wants a good look at the body, as he heard about the crime and recognized the MO of the killer. He says that a woman by the name of Li Wan Kai was behind the death of this man, who turns out to be a doctor. And how exactly does Vance know this? Well, he only spent the better part of two decades tracking this woman down — not to mention the fact that he nearly killed her. Turns out Kai is a North Korean assassin who specializes in long-range kills. And this time, her victim is (supposedly) Vance.

Eventually, it’s revealed that Kai’s not really after Vance at all — she’s seeking revenge against the men who forced to become a killing machine. She followed a man by the name of Pak Su Ji, who was one of the men responsible for overseeing her training as an assassin back in North Korea, to Washington, D.C. only to shoot him dead outside the U.S. Capitol building. Kai eventually ends up at Vance’s house, where she’s holding his wife hostage. Vance tries to talk Kai down, but she’s not having any of it — she wants to die, and she wants him to kill her like he should have many years before. Much to the viewer’s surprise (well, sort of), it is Vance’s wife that ends up killing her so her husband doesn’t have to. Talk about devotion to your spouse, right?

This episode’s case does a lot to give the viewer some more (and much-needed) insight into just who Leon Vance is as a person. We all know him as the director of NCIS, but his past and his personal life are still pretty much unknown. I always love when we get to see these little glimpses into Vance’s home life; it lets me see beyond the work-oriented, stern man that we see at headquarters and helps me view him as a more well-rounded and likeable person. I’ve got to admit, Vance is growing on me this season.

As for the characters, they were, like I mentioned before, absolutely fabulous. I don’t know who was writing this episode, but they should be writing every single one from now on. Seriously. The dialogue was that good. Every word that came out of their mouths was so in character that I could find no fault whatsoever. I must admit, though, that it was Tony that was in perfect form tonight. He had so many fabulous one-liners (including the one that titles this blog post) that I can’t help but share a few with you:

* To McGee: “Maybe you should stop drinking the motivational Kool-Aid!”

* To Ziva, during a discussion about the crime: “That’s not kosher. It’s a figure of speech.”

* Tony: “He got Kai-jacked!”
McGee: “Did you really just say that?”
Tony: “I regret it already.”

And can I just say how excited I was that McGee got a girlfriend this episode? Even if she was only dating him to get closer to Kai (it turns out McGee’s pseudo-girlfriend was actually a “freelance” assassin trying to eliminate Kai). I would have really liked if she was actually a good person, because she and McGee surprisingly looked adorable together. The scene at the coffee shop in the beginning of the episode? Yeah, I thought it was so cute and so appropriate for a would-be McGee romance.

Random thoughts from tonight’s episode:

* So, this one’s for all my fellow “Gilmore Girls” fans out there: That guy who plays Jeff Dunham? Yeah, I recognized him, too, and it was driving me crazy that I couldn’t remember who he was. Thank God for IMDB.com, right? It turns out that that was Zack!

* When Ducky mentioned that Kai had tied one of her hairs around Dead Doctor Victim’s finger (in a perfect bow, I might add), I couldn’t help but wonder how much time that must have taken her. I mean, really.

* The bathroom scene was kind of, well, not my favorite moment of tonight’s episode. And usually, any scene in which Ziva and Tony are alone ranks at least in my top 3 moments of the night. Is it bad that when Ziva told Tony to stop acting like her — and I quote — “big brother,” I actually felt my heart twist in pain a little? Does that mean I’m overly involved in this non-relationship? Yeah? I figured.

* And this may have just been me, but that philosophical little quote at the end? Did it remind anyone else of “Criminal Minds?” Or was that just me?

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