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PostPosted: Tue Sep 12, 2017 10:40 am 
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NCIS INVESTIGATES THE MURDER OF A NAVY LIEUTENANT WHOSE BODY WAS HIDDEN AT A LOCAL CEMETERY OVER A YEAR AGO, ON “NCIS,” TUESDAY, OCT. 3

Laura San Giacomo Guest Stars as Doctor Grace Confalone

“Twofer” – NCIS is called in to investigate when the body of a missing Navy Lieutenant who disappeared a year and a half ago is located by a cemetery grounds crew while they are relocating caskets on the property. Also, Gibbs and McGee must pass a psych evaluation with Doctor Grace Confalone (Laura San Giacomo) before officially resuming all work responsibilities, on NCIS, Tuesday, Oct. 3 (8:00-9:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network.

CHEAT TWEET: #NCIS investigates a body dumped at a local cemetery while Gibbs & McGee undergo psych evaluations #CBS 10/3 8pm http://bit.ly/2wSw4OO

REGULAR CAST:
Mark Harmon (NCIS Special Agent Leroy Jethro Gibbs)
Sean Murray (NCIS Special Agent Timothy McGee)
Emily Wickersham (NCIS Special Agent Eleanor “Ellie” Bishop)
Pauley Perrette (Forensic Specialist Abby Scuito)
Wilmer Valderrama (NCIS Special Agent Nicholas “Nick” Torres)
Brian Dietzen (Dr. Jimmy Palmer)
Duane Henry (MI6 Officer Clayton Reeves)
Rocky Carroll (NCIS Director Leon Vance)
David McCallum (Dr. Donald “Ducky” Mallard)

GUEST CAST:
Laura San Giacomo (Doctor Grace Confalone)
Coby Ryan McLaughlin (Pete Wilkins)
A. Leslie Kies (Donna Coyne)
Todd Giebenhain (Leo Vairo)
Amad Jackson (Phil Proderman)
Peggy Dunne (Doris Tolchuck)
Matt Knudsen (Jensen Reed)
Judy Kain (Gladys Stone)
Kristen O’Meara (Lydia Smith)
Jun Kim (Navy Commander Doctor Steve Nuali)
Bo Youngblood (Janis)

WRITTEN BY: Scott Williams
DIRECTED BY: James Whitmore, Jr.

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 12, 2017 10:41 am 
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NCIS season 15 episode 2 spoilers: Will Gibbs, McGee return to work?

Going into NCIS season 15 episode 2, all signs indicate that McGee and Gibbs are going to still face an uphill battle. We’ve reported already here at CarterMatt the two parties are going to work to return to Washington DC in the premiere, but even for a show as procedural as this one, there are no guarantees that they are going to be able to pick up their badge and get back to work after spending the better part of several months separated from the team in Paraguay.

The title for NCIS season 15 episode 2 (which airs on October 3) is “Twofer,”. While there are an assortment of things going on in the episode, the synopsis below makes it clear that Gibbs and McGee are probably going to be center stage once more for the story:

“NCIS is called in to investigate when the body of a missing Navy Lieutenant who disappeared a year and a half ago is located by a cemetery grounds crew while they are relocating caskets on the property. Also, Gibbs and McGee must pass a psych evaluation with Doctor Grace Confalone (Laura San Giacomo) before officially resuming all work responsibilities.”
Insofar as deaths go, this has to be one of the grislier ones that the team is going to investigate this season. It unfortunately makes some sense that it took a long time for this body to be discovered. After all, who is going to discover a body at a cemetery if it was hidden in the right place? It’s horrible.

In getting back to the Gibbs – McGee story, those of you who watched the show should be familiar with the Grace Confalone character given that she made a number of appearances. It makes sense to have a recurring character of this capacity, largely because of the fact that she is responsible for helping agents get back to work after experiencing great trauma. The reality for the entire NCIS team at the moment is that with this job comes enormous risks, and they have to be prepared to both handle that and accept that. CarterMatt may hate to say it, but this is probably not going to be the last time in which the team needs to call on her services. There are so many more incidents that are likely to come up over the course of future cases. Also, what happened to Mark Harmon and Sean Murray’s characters will probably be the sort of stuff that sticks with them for an extended period of time.


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 29, 2017 11:51 am 
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'NCIS' Season 15: Traumatized Gibbs Needs to Prove He Can Return to Work

“NCIS” Season 15 premiered on Tuesday and it answered the question in everybody’s mind after last season’s shocking finale. After being left in the hands of terrorists in a South American jungle, Gibbs and McGee managed to escape their captors. The new season picked up a couple of months after last season’s finale.

In episode 2 of “NCIS” Season 15 titled “Twofer,” Gibbs (Mark Harmon) and McGee (Sean Murray) will be asked to have a psychological evaluation after their return to the U.S. The duo need to prove that they are ready and fit to go back to work after their ordeal.

Laura San Giacomo is reportedly reprising her role as Dr. Grace Confalone to help them. Gibbs and McGee must pass her evaluation before they can officially assume work responsibilities.

EP Frank Cardea himself has said that Gibbs will be a changed man after he and McGee will be rescued. His colleagues will find a scarred and traumatized man when he reports back to work reports Parade. Cardea teased that although he will still be the Gibbs that viewers love, he is going to be slightly different from the man he was before.

Meanwhile, there are reports that Gibbs will get a promotion in “NCIS” Season 15 but will have to stay in the office more. This means that he will be involved in much lesser action in the field.

The synopsis also revealed that the NCIS will be called when the body of a missing Navy Lieutenant is discovered by the cemetery grounds crew while they are relocating caskets. The victim has been missing for a year and a half according to Cartermatt.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 9:11 am 
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NCIS Season 15 Episode 2 Review: Twofer

Mark Harmon's Gibbs spent much of NCIS Season 15 Episode 2 on the receiving end of odd looks from the members of his team, who were all worried about his state of mind after the torture and whatnot of the off-season.

He surprised them all -- and the viewers -- with his downright sunny (to quote Dr. Confalone) demeanor on his first day back at work.

ndeed, Dr. Confalone pretty well summed up this almost unnerving behavior:

You’ve just said more to me about how you feel in the last two minutes than in all the time that I’ve known you. If that’s not a new you, I don’t know what is.

Gibbs, the stoic, the man whose friends needed a crowbar and a stick of dynamite to elicit more than monosyllabic responses, actually verbally and physically interacted with people!
For cryin' out loud, he actually hugged someone!

It's unfortunately common in Hollywood for leading male characters (particularly in law enforcement or military roles) to refuse to talk about their feelings, let alone have therapy or take psych evaluations seriously.

Gibbs flipped that on its head in "Twofer," not only willingly showing up early for his evaluation appointment, but then continuing therapy with Dr. Confalone afterwards!

I cannot express the inner joy this makes me feel. Shrinks are not useless. Therapy is not useless. There is no shame in talking about feelings or getting help for emotional issues.

McGee's avoidance of the psych evaluation was rooted not in the fact that he was unaffected by the whole experience but in the fear that he had been broken by it, something the good doctor quickly contradicted.

And despite Gibbs's good face, he clearly suffered aftereffects. For one thing, he took to locking his door, something he notoriously refused to do previously despite the number of bad guys who have gone after him.

This complicated emotional story provided a lot of insight into both Gibbs and McGee following their ordeal. They will not continue as if nothing happened; status quo is not supreme here.

Gibbs's changed demeanor was certainly surprising, if nothing else, and allowed for some very entertaining little moments (such as the aforementioned hug).

Grace Confalone: Director Vance needs mandatory psych evals from each of you. I assume you would prefer sooner rather than later.
Gibbs: Uh, tell you what I’d prefer…
Grace Confalone: A root canal. I know! What say we skip our usual dance?
Gibbs: I was going to say ‘this afternoon.’

One of my favorites from the episode was when Ducky expressed his joy at having Gibbs back (a moment that had been noticeably missing from the previous entry). It's not often that Gibbs actually gets to have fun, least of all at Gibbs's expense.
And later, Gibbs provided this bit of insight:

Bishop [about Ducky and Jimmy]: To think they actually enjoy this!
Gibbs: Ha! Face it -- we *all* enjoy this.

In a way, he was almost speaking for us, as fans, as well as himself. We're watching this show right alongside them, and we enjoy it, too.

By comparison, the Crime of the Week story almost felt like an afterthought, despite nominally taking up most of the episode.

Not sure what I thought of Bishop-as-Boss, but her manner (particularly towards Torres) struck me as more buddy than boss. She just got to order them around.

I'm not going to complain about Bishop getting character growth opportunities, but this is somewhat frustrating, given that we've barely seen anything of McGee acting as Senior Field Agent (i.e., Gibbs's righthand man) since Tony's departure.

Obviously, the circumstances in this case wouldn't allow McGee to be the boss, since he was in the same boat as Gibbs, but it would be nice for him to get the opportunity to step up more.

The case itself was fairly routine; nothing too outlandish aside from the initial discovery of the body. Probably the most memorable scene from the case portion of the episode was the casket owner's daughter haranguing everyone.

The connection to the cemetery employee (Phil, I think his name was?) surprised me; normally, characters like him and his partner are one-scene-and-done, never to be seen or mentioned again.

A little convenient, with the perpetrator's accomplice being one of the three possible cemetery/funeral parlor employees we met, but I really didn't mind so much.

I will add this: fentanyl, one of the drugs that played a role in the unfortunate victim's death, is a highly-addictive opioid. When mixed with other drugs (legal or otherwise), it can easily lead to overdose and death.

There were a number of callbacks, too, not least of which being Abby's owning a casket. Anyone else remember McGee's reaction when he first found out it wasn't a box bed?

Quotes:

Yeah, look, I’ve survived worse, I’ve cheated death a bunch, but… this is different. I thought it was over. - Gibbs


Jimmy: Wait, wait, I was delirious?
Ducky: Incoherent! You called me ‘Ducky’!


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 9:13 am 
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Donna Kauffman recaps 'NCIS' season 15, episode 2, 'Twofer': Whistling rainbows

Have we recovered from that intense opener last week? I’m glad our boys are back home and ready to get back to work. Or are they? Dr. Grace is back this week (hello, Laura San Giacomo!) so I suspect there’s going to be a bit of a re-entry process, which … not surprising! I’m going to go out on a limb and say that Gibbs probably isn’t going to be a fan of waiting, but if anyone is up to the task, it’s Dr. G.

Let’s find out, shall we?

We open in a graveyard (and it isn’t even the Halloween episode yet!) with a backhoe and two graveyard workers digging up and moving caskets from one location to another to make way for a new lane on the interstate. The woman is overseeing from the ground and the guy on the backhoe is griping about the indignity of moving dead people around, when he swings a casket too far and bangs it into the truck, inadvertently dumping the casket’s contents onto the ground. And, uh, Houston, we have a problem! It’s a twofer (hence the title of this episode, I presume) with one of the deceased in a military uniform, and the other, a woman, in a blue blazer and skirt.
Cue awesome opening theme song and credits! (Quinn? Quinn? Anyone? Bueller? Oh right, exited out, stage right, with barely a mention. How … thoughtful.)
But I digress.
We’re at a clinic with Gibbs getting two thumbs-up from his doctor. Other than needing to put back on a few pounds, Gibbs gets the all clear to return to duty. Enter Dr. Grace with a “not so fast!” Well, we knew that was coming. With Dr. Grace is the still bearded McGee (who got about a 50/50 split via my reader mail on the facial hair. I’m with the thumbs-down 50%. It makes him look like he’s trying to play grownup. Bring back the baby face!)
A broadly grinning Gibbs gives McGee a very enthusiastic hug hello. (So cheerful! How, un-Gibbs-ian.) Dr. Laura lets them know they need a full psych eval signed off on, per Vance. Gibbs surprises her (and us!) by offering to meet her that afternoon. Gibbs is sporting more hair two, but on his head. Doesn’t look bad, but, mmm, my vote is still out. (I get that it’s plot-oriented.) His voice sounds pretty rough, too. A result of the water-boarding? Guess we’ll find out. McGee steps away to take a call and Dr. Grace, pleasantly surprised by Gibbs attitude, tells him he seems “sunnier.” This gets a chuckle. She tells him he had a lot of people praying for him. “I guess it worked,” he says. Heh.

Re-enter McGee who says the call was from Bishop wanting to know if they could come help with a case. A “weird one.” Dr. Grace gives them a temporary OK, with the caveat that Gibbs can’t take a leadership role until cleared, and they can’t blow off their appointments. McGee gives Bishop the OK and Gibbs gives Dr. Grace a big hug goodbye, leaving her, and us, very disconcerted. Who is that silver-haired man?
Arriving on scene, Torres gives a hearty welcome, telling Gibbs he’s happy to see him back where he belongs. “At a cemetery?” Gibbs makes a joke! He also says how he’s happy to see Torres found his NCIS jacket. “Fits better than I thought.” Aw, I like that. Gibbs asks Bishop — still agent in charge — what she wants them to do. Also, Torres? Can rock the barely there beard. McGee? Please stop. Torres and Bishop have a little back-and-forth where Torres gives her a backhanded compliment on how well she did as lead agent, given, you know, how much more experience he had in the field. She counters with her time in Afghanistan being a cake walk, then sends him over to talk to the graveyard workers.

Over by the twofer, we learn that Blue Blazer has been the rightful resident of the casket for the past two years. They identify the man in uniform by his dog tags. He was a Navy lieutenant reported “UA” (unexcused absence) from his base 18 months ago. Meanwhile, Torres finds out from the graveyard workers that the caskets arrive sealed, and they bury them, so the twofer part didn’t happen on their watch. Graveyard Guy is still hung up on the bad juju they’re getting from moving dead bodies around, which is freaking Torres out.

Ducky and Palmer arrive on the scene, and we get a lovely Ducky Story about his experience in London in the ’60s with gangs hiding the dead bodies of their rivals by double-stacking. His phone goes off (love the bagpipes!) and he checks the screen, irritably comments on wishing the caller would leave him alone, declines the call and gets back to work. (Ooh, a developing Ducky subplot? Yay!) Palmer notes blunt-force trauma on the Navy Lt. as likely cause of death. In comes Torres, all creeped out by the “if you mess with the dead, the dead will mess with you” stuff from Graveyard Guy, much to Gibbs’ amusement in the background. Bishop agrees with Ducky that it looks like a mob hit and hide. McGee comments it would be easier to dump a body in the woods than dig up a casket, which, true. Torres comments that dead bodies in the woods get found, and Gibbs adds that somebody didn’t want this body found. And we fade to a contemplative black and white.

Back in the Bull Pen of Orangey Goodness, the team is busy on their computers. Gibbs notices McGee glancing over at him, so he pauses, looks at McGee until their gazes meet again. Gibbs smiles, seems very serene, asks McGee if he’s OK. McGee doesn’t answer right away, and when he says he is, it sounds a bit diffident. He asks Gibbs the same question, Gibbs just shrugs, says, “You know.” Torres and Bishop watch the two, picking up on the fact that it’s not just run-of-the-mill chat. Bishop says she’s glad they are back with Torres commenting it already feels like it never happened (which isn’t as dismissive as it sounds. They were gone for two months, and however long after that while in recovery. It’s more a reference to how easily they’ve moved right back into the old groove). Enter Director Vance who is also happy to have them back, but comments that he still needs a clean-slate eval and not to miss their appointments. McGee assures him they will not. Vance goes on to say that from now on, they will operate strictly by-the-book. Bishop calls for the sit-rep and they all move to the Screen of All Knowing. Appeased that they are following the rules, Vance heads out.

We learn from the sit-rep that our Navy Lt. was married, no kids and once a SEAL candidate, but washed out due to a shoulder injury. He still trained for triathlons. Gibbs says that NL’s wife reported him missing one day after he was listed as UA by his commanding officer. Bishop looks startled by Gibbs offering info on the sit-rep, because it’s weird being in charge of your boss. Gibbs thinks it’s amusing, which it kind of is. Bishop asks if he just went missing for no reason, and Torres has that answer. Turns out his disappearance happened one week before he was due to testify against a drug dealer. He interrupted an armed robbery. Masked robber shot a health club owner, who survived. NL jumped the Robber, but he escaped. NL had seen enough of Robber’s face to give enough of a description that Robber was caught. It was his third arrest, so the three-strike rule would have applied, but with NL gone, Robber walked. No record of him since. Whereabouts unknown.

Bishop says she and McGee will go tell NL’s wife they’ve found her husband, and directs Gibbs and Torres to go back to the cemetery and look into who seals the caskets, how it’s done, that whole deal. Superstitious Torres balks, not really wanting to go back there. She says she can go if he’s spooked, and he backs up a step, saying no, no, he doesn’t mind, but that he didn’t say “spooked,” you know, in case any of the undead are listening. HA.
At NL’s house, the wife is understandably devastated, but relieved to know the answer to her husband’s whereabouts. She wants to know how the “creep” (aka Robber) got the body into the casket without anyone knowing. Wife says that saving a man’s life should have been enough, that she begged him not to testify. She says there were no overt threats, but NL felt the pressure and it took a toll on his health, his bad shoulder.

Meanwhile, over at the cemetery, Torres and Gibbs talk to the director as they walk through a very upscale-looking main building, the halls lined with crypts, in a very polished marble kind of way. He tells them that Blue Blazer’s service was held in their inside chapel, explaining she died during a harsh winter, with the ground too frozen to dig, so her casket and the other “winter decedents” were held in storage until the spring when the ground thawed, which was May 11. Turns out NL went missing on May 8. Director said they’d never had anything like this happen, that he personally locks every casket. Gibbs notes there are surveillance cameras, but is told they are saved for several months, then recorded over. As they near the offices, a woman comes striding out and gets in Director’s face, saying, “First you move my mother, and now I learn she’s had a roommate all this time?” Heh. We get the light musical notes of humor as Torres questions her on the case, and Daughter demands to know who he is. Torres shows her his creds, asks Daughter if there could be any connection between Mom, NL or Robber and Daughter is all, “Now you think my mother runs with criminals?” She goes on to say that while Mom was apparently a pistol, she never missed a day of church. Gibbs gets a call and quickly moves away from ranting Daughter, thankfully taking us with him. Bishop tells Gibbs that she’s going to get Torres to meet her over at the health club so they can talk to the owner, who was part of the robbery.

Meanwhile, it’s time for McGee and Gibbs to see Dr. Grace! Gibbs arrives early, clearly surprising Grace, who has to quickly make a call to her secretary to cancel her 3 o’clock. Gibb is all, “I thought I was your 3 o’clock,” and Grace is all, “Who knew you’d actually show up?” HA. Gibbs sits, looks around, and Dr. G is just looking at him. He comments on how he gets stared at a lot, since he got back home. She smiles, tells him that it’s likely people being surprised that he made it back, grateful that he did and, in her case, surprise that he showed up for his appointment. Heh. She asks him how it makes him feel, being stared at. He asks if that means they’re beginning, and she sighs, says yes, and he can “commence with the one-word answers.” HA. He gives her the side-eye, says, “Now who’s being glib?” These two! She nods, agrees and tells him to go ahead. He says if she wants to know how he feels, that he’s not sure. Then he lets out a short, surprised laugh, smiles, and says, “Happy.” She repeats that, questioningly, though in a positive way, and he says that he is happy, happy to be alive. Grateful. He says he has survived a lot, cheated death multiple times (and I was thinking that, too) but how this time it was different. He tells her he really thought it was over this time, that he’s not “whistling rainbows” or anything, but … maybe he is.

Dr. Grace asks him if he feels that even after he was tortured, starved. She asks it intently, probing his full mental state, but doesn’t disbelieve what he’s telling her. He tells her they can talk about that part, but he’s more interested in where it left him. He says he doesn’t know why, or how he feels the exuberance he does, that it’s not what he expected, and you can hear the emotion in his voice, the confusion. He says he feels like he just wants to “savor being back.”

Dr. G smiles, seeming truly pleased. Gibbs looks at her, asks why she’s laughing. She points to her face, says she’s smiling, not laughing. She tells him that if she didn’t know him better, she’d be tempted to say that he feels like he has a new lease on life. And that’s a good thing. His response, “Ya think?” HA.
I know we all love the gruff Gibbs, but I like that, after 14 seasons, we’re going to take this in a new, different direction. I hope they’re not just setting him up to crush his “new lease” down the line. He’s suffered more than enough. All 14 seasons’ worth. For now, let’s explore this different side of Gibbs, you know? I’m with Dr. G on this!
Over at the health club, Torres is still twitchy about the cemetery time. Bishop reminds him he’s with the living now, and he embraces that truth, and a big ol’ workout tire, which he flips over, then grips his back. A cute trainer girl comes over, asks if he’s OK, and Torres is all, “Oh, just an old injury from when I stopped a drug cartel. Single-handedly.” Or words to that flirty effect. Bishop shows her creds, asks after the owner. Cute Trainer says Owner is upstairs in his office, but to knock first, since his girlfriend is with him. Then she tells Torres (who she calls Jason Bourne, much to his delight) that she’d be happy to help him work out that injury. Yeah, I’m sure she would. Bishop and Torres head upstairs and walk through until they see a partially open door to the owner’s office. They knock as they walk in … and find Owner with Wife. (Not his wife, of course, but NL’s wife.) Ruh roh. She says how this must look terrible, and well, yeah, it kinda does! Fade to black and white.

Back at the gym, Bishop talks to Wife and Torres talks to Owner. Turns out it was NL saving Owner’s life — a man he didn’t really know — that brought NL and Owner together. They rehabbed together, Owner from the gunshot wound and NL from the shoulder he’d messed up again tackling Robber. Wife and Owner didn’t know each other before the shooting, and then after NL’s disappearance, when Robber went free, they comforted each other and, well, you know. Their stories match, but, eh, I dunno. Something seems sketchy.
Meanwhile, Dr. G is calling Vance to tell him she’s signing off on Gibbs, but she has some reservations about McGee. This is not a surprise. I figured after the glance over the monitors, that McGee as still on shaky ground. McGee shows up in Abby Lab, which this time is Abby Garage. She’s happy to see him, welcomes him back with a hug, worries that maybe he’s back too soon. He says he’s not sure of anything really, but there he is. He asks about the casket Abby has been processing, and she tells him it’s the “Rolls Royce of caskets.” She says if it wasn’t pre-owned, she’d be all over it. Hers is getting lumpy. HA. She tells McGee that the body wasn’t put in by the cemetery workers or at the funeral parlor, that it was jimmied open with a crowbar. McGee questions why the cemetery or funeral parlor folks wouldn’t have used a crowbar and she dangles a key and says why would they when they could just use a casket key and they’d be the only ones who had one. He comments on how she has a casket key and she reminds him she also has a casket. Heh. (Seriously, they missed their chance to make this the Halloween show.)
Down in Ducky’s Digs, he’s apologizing to Blue Blazer (aka Mom) on having to suffer the further indignity of his examination, and that he’ll have her back in the comfort of her casket in no time. “With a lot more elbow room,” says Palmer. Oh, Jimmy. Palmer is working on NL and I am averting my eyes. GAH. No embalming fluid for NL means he’s “a little ripe” and not at all easy on the eyes. Ducky’s phone goes off again, and Palmer questions who keeps calling him. I was hoping for something juicy, but Ducky says it’s his university in Edinburgh, wanting an increase in his alumni dues. Bo-ring.

Enter Gibbs who has an exaggerated reaction to eau d’ NL, saying if it gets any worse, no one will even get off the elevator. Ducky is hoping the fibers he is lifting from Blue Blazer will help identify the killer, while Palmer (avert eyes! avert eyes! GAH!) has concluded that the blunt-force trauma contributed to, but wasn’t the cause of death. However, the level of decay is slowing him down. Gibbs tries to cut and run, but Ducky holds him there while he gives a rather rambling welcome back. Gibbs finally nods, thanks him and exits, stage right. Oh, Ducky.
Up in the Bull Pen of Orangey Goodness, the team hasn’t found any connection between Robber and any of the folks otherwise involved with the case, so still no leads on who might have killed NL and gotten him into that casket.

Fortunately, Torres reports that Robber has finally been found and picked up. He’s on his way in for questioning. In interrogation with Bishop and Torres, Robber (a kind of ghoulish-looking dude) claims he was wrongly accused, that NL picked him out of a lineup, and that when NL disappeared, he was so thankful for the reprieve, he gave up his life of crime. They tell Robber they just found NL’s body, and suddenly Robber wants a lawyer.
On the other side of the glass, McGee and Gibbs are with Vance, who wants to know why McGee missed his appointment with Dr. Grace. Ruh roh. So that’s why she called. He says he had a problem at home, that he and Delilah are trying to “get back in the swing of things” and says he was hoping to get home in time for dinner, if there’s nothing else they needed him to stay and do. Gibbs signs off on it, as does Vance, but with the caveat that McGee sees Dr. G by the end of the following day, or not to come back in until he does.
And we go right back to cadaver world! GAH! Don’t do that! Give a girl a chance to avert. Jeez! (Now you know why I’ll never be writing a serial killer series. Or recapping one.) Jimmy is starting to cave under the increasing stench, while Ducky is perfectly fine, saying a lifetime of doing his job has rendered him immune to the smell. Palmer starts to make a joke about that, then speaks in gibberish, before dropping to the floor. Ducky hits the emergency button, setting off the alarm, and rushes to Palmer’s side. Fade to black and white. Well, I don’t know if we saw that coming.
We come back to find Palmer on a table, recovering, NL wrapped in plastic, and large fans blowing. Bishop is still gagging, and Gibbs is standing beside the fan. Ducky says it was more than the smell that made Palmer pass out, that the delirium just beforehand points to something else. (You’d think they’d lock it down and keep everyone else out until they could figure out what did it, but OK.) They narrow it down to the fact that Palmer was dissecting the liver, which can store concentrated levels of toxins. Ducky is sending up a sample to Abby and tells the other three they should go ahead and leave the morgue until they get some results. Gibbs and Bishop are all over that plan, but Palmer demands to stay, saying he wants to find out what felled him. Ducky is pleased, and in the elevator, Bishop is all, “to think they actually enjoy this,” and Gibbs laughs and says, “Face it, we all enjoy this.” Heh. Inside the elevator, Bishop asks him how the eval went, if he got clearance. He shrugs, says he thought it went well, but no clearance yet. Gibbs says if she wants to head home, he’ll stay. Surprised, she says on his first day back? No, that she and Torres will stay. He says he doesn’t mind, but she counters with “I mind” and tells him she’s still the boss. He smiles, chuckles, clearly pleased. She tells him to “Go home, Gibbs,” and he smiles, nods.

In Abby Lab, Torres comes in, his back still tweaked, and Abby asks him if he’s still messed up about the “messing with the dead stuff,” and he’s all, “I tell one person, now everybody knows?” But really, who better to turn to than Abby? She tells him to stop worrying that the dead are in a particularly unique position to not be able to mess with him. Heh. He points out Palmer’s weird fainting spell, and Abby tells him she thinks it’s like a case where a woman had cancer and the meds got stuck in her blood stream and crystallized, and when they drew her blood this toxic gas came out and dropped half the room. (Short version.) Enter Palmer with the liver sample, exit Torres. Palmer asks to stay and do the study with Abby.

And we shift (mercifully) to Gibbs’ basement, where he’s wearing a shop apron, working on some metal piece of … something (how’s that for detail!) but tosses it on the table and takes off his work gloves. He picks up his mug and sees his still swollen, purplish knuckle, and that his hand is shaking a bit. He puts the mug down, studies his hand, flexes and makes a fist with his fingers, wipes his fingers with a rag. Then the doorbell rings and he tosses the rag down and heads upstairs. It’s McGee. And Gibbs unlocks the door to let him in. McGee asks him when he started locking his door and Gibbs kind of rolls his eyes, and McGee is all, “Yeah, right.” He lets McGee in, closes it, locks it and asks if McGee is having trouble sleeping. McGee says he could ask him the same thing, and Gibbs reminds him he isn’t the one showing up on McGee’s doorstep at three in the morning. HA. McGee says he didn’t want to keep Delilah awake again, tossing and turning. They head down to the basement, and McGee says maybe after sleeping on cement for so long he can’t get used to a mattress again. Gibbs asks about the baby and Delilah, and McGee says they’re both doing great.

Then Gibbs offers him a jelly jar drink and asks him what he’s really doing there. Gibbs studies him, says they spent months getting beat on, starved, and he never saw McGee as scared as he is in that moment. McGee says he’s not scared, that it’s more that he doesn’t know what he is, or what to feel. He says he can’t be like Gibbs, being fine, cracking jokes, and the thing is, Gibbs was tortured more, suffered more, and yet he seems to have bounced right back. Stern Gibbs returns, and he tells McGee that maybe he got tortured more, but McGee had to watch, and just because he’s cracking jokes, doesn’t mean he’s OK. He says he’s “OK enough. For now.” And McGee says that Gibbs is OK enough to pass his psych eval. Gibbs asks if McGee doesn’t think he’ll pass his eval, and McGee says he doesn’t know, but what if he can’t? He says what if he can’t fake it like Gibbs, which prompts Gibbs to bark, “What do you mean, ‘fake it?’” McGee apologizes, says he didn’t mean it that way. He says he feels like the guy who doesn’t want to go to the doctor because he doesn’t want to find out how sick he is, and Gibbs tells him he’s not like that guy, he is that guy, and he needs to just GO. McGee asks what happens if he has to keep going. Gibbs’ phone rings, as he tells McGee that if he does, then Gibbs will see him there, he guesses.
The phone call is from Abby who has solved the toxic-liver problem. NL had a cocktail of drugs in his liver, painkillers, probably for his shoulder injury, which did the same thing that happened in the other case Abby referenced. The drugs crystalized in his liver and when Palmer cut into them, they realized a cloud of toxins that knocked him out. One of the drugs is over the counter, but Abby wonders where NL got the other painkillers. McGee and Gibbs seem to think they know exactly who slipped them to NL. Fade to black and white.

Back in the Bull Pen, it’s morning and Gibbs is in early, surprised to see Bishop already at her desk. She says she never left, showered in the gym and put on the change of clothes she keeps in her locker. Gibbs says that’s a good idea for a boss, and she’s all, “I don’t feel boss,” which makes him smile. Bishop finds no connection between drug dealer Robber and the kinds of drugs NL had in his system. Torres comes in and says one of the drugs was the same kind he used on his back when he tweaked it while out of the country, but it works applied directly to skin, not ingested like a pill. McGee comes in and says Robber’s lawyer says her client won’t talk unless they can prove they have more evidence against him, and the team agrees Robber really doesn’t look good for giving NL the kinds of drugs normally used for a sports injury. Gibbs has a lightbulb moment, as do we all. Robber might not, but Owner probably does! So why was Robber really there that night? Was he robbing the health club, or did he and Owner have come other business that went south?
Down in interrogation, it doesn’t take long for Bishop and Torres to get Robber to incriminate himself, much to his lawyer’s chagrin. Turns out Owner had been busted once before on cocaine possession, which turned out to be from Robber. Robber was Owner’s dealer for recreational drugs, but then he hears Owner is making bank on some “wonder drug” painkiller and Robber wants in on the action. Some drug Owner was importing from South America. Same place Torres was when he used that topical drug.
Over at the health club, naturally Owner is denying everything, but Gibbs picks up a high school football team photo from his memorabilia and points out young Owner. At the same time, Torres pulls up the same photo in a yearbook, which he found when trying to connect the various players to NL. Now, look at that. Owner was a co-captain of the football team. And the other co-captain? Why, none other than Graveworker Guy! Bishop shows up at the cemetery and GG knows the jig is up right then and confesses that, well, hey, he needed the money. “Meanwhile, in interrogation, things don’t look good for Owner, now that GG has rolled on him. Owner says GG just gave him access to the casket, but wasn’t involved otherwise. He goes on to tell them that he truly was just trying to help NL manage his pain, that none of his other clients had that kind of reaction. He didn’t know what to do, but that it was an accident, and afterward, he got rid of his supply. Too little, too late, there, buddy. The blunt force came from NL coming by the health club after hours, mad at Owner because he couldn’t manage his pain, the two tussled, and NL fell, hit the barbell rack. Not hard enough to kill him, but he was dead anyway. He wants to know if they need to tell Wife. In the words of Gibbs, ya think? On the other side of the glass is Bishop … and Wife, who agrees to testify against him at Owner’s trial.
We shift to Ducky’s Digs as Palmer has the feels for Wife, losing her husband, then unknowingly falling for the guy who killed him. Ducky does Ducky, complete with arcane love quote from an Irish headstone. Palmer says he should write a book, and Ducky lets out a humorless chuckle, saying sure, in all his spare time. Enter Abby with a certified letter from Ducky’s Edinburgh alma mater, which she signed for and presents to him. Ducky tells Palmer to file it in the trash. Much to Ducky’s chagrin, Palmer decides to open it, curious to see how much Ducky donates to his university. It turns out it isn’t a solicitation for funds, but an invitation to come to Edinburgh. His alma mater wants him to come to Scotland for a celebratory weekend, so they can honor their most successful alumni with an honorary degree, Doctor of Humane Letters. Ducky’s not buying it and looks at the letter himself. It is true. He’s kind of ashamed he let his cynicism keep him from answering their phone calls. Abby asks him how he feels now that he knows the truth. A rather swaggering smile crosses his face and he says, “I wouldn’t miss it for the world.” Go, Dr. Mallard! (And by the way, he’s looking particularly dashing this season!)

We end with McGee in Dr. G’s office, remarking how amazing Delilah was, both during his ordeal in captivity, and now that he’s back home. Dr. G says he’s spent the whole time talking about Delilah. They have five minutes left, so now he needs to tell her why he’s not sleeping. He says he doesn’t know. She tells him to pretend he does know and take a chance, tell her what it is he doesn’t know. He says he doesn’t know why he’s been worrying so much since he got back. He said it was one thing when they were there, looking death in the face, but even then, he had faith they’d get back, so he shouldn’t be worrying now that he is back. She said maybe down there, fear wasn’t an option. He says down there, there was no time for fear, and she says, and now there is plenty of time. He says he can’t shake the feeling that the other shoe is going to drop, that his luck has run out, that at any moment, something is bound to go wrong.
Dr. G wonders if there’s some giant scoreboard out there keeping track of who has suffered enough and who is owed some more, and McGee agrees it sounds crazy when put like that. She says misfortune is arbitrary and McGee says it seems like some people just skate by while others seem to be magnets for it. She asks which one he is, and he says he’s somewhere in the middle, maybe. She assures him that everybody is in the middle, that despite appearances, everyone has a story to tell. (Amen to that.) She tells him that no one gets through life unscathed and he asks if that is supposed to help him sleep. She tells him that “worry is a bully,” that it gives nothing, it only takes. McGee says he wishes he could enjoy the ride more and quit obsessing about what lies ahead. Dr. G leans forward and says that all the hardship he dealt with over the years as part of his job was what prepared him to handle what happened to him in captivity, and he passed that with flying colors. So now? With that additional experience under his belt, he’s actually more prepared to deal with hardship than at any other time in his life. (Interesting viewpoint …)
As they walk out of her office, she tells McGee she’ll be signing his paperwork and sending it over in the morning. Gibbs is in the waiting room. He tells McGee that he meant what he said, about seeing him at Dr. G’s office. McGee asks if he’s been there the entire time. Gibbs says no, only 10 minutes. He smiles, comments how he keeps getting there early. McGee seems surprised to realize that Gibbs is continuing to see Dr. G despite being cleared. It’s something of a relief to him. Gibbs asks McGee if he’s going home. McGee smiles, says, “I’m going to bed.” They share a smile, and McGee nods and exits. Gibbs smiles … and we fade to black and white.
The season is rolling and our team is finding its footing. Some things are the same, but a lot is different. And not just Gibbs’ new lease on life. Quinn is gone, Reeves might become a more constant presence, though he was AWOL this week, and there are rumors we’re going to get a new face in the crowd in the upcoming eps. (Hello, Maria Bello!) We’ll see how that plays out week to week. For now, I’m looking forward to seeing it unfold.


http://happyeverafter.usatoday.com

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 9:31 am 
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I thought this episode was amazing.

It's like the writers finally know what we want to see. A much more realistic follow-up to trauma than they ever have in the past. Harmon and Murray were both fantastic. So nice to see the impact being addressed. So much better than they've done in the past. So good!

And some really cute/funny moments.

Loved it.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 10:37 am 
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I know can't wait to see.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 6:41 pm 
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Yes, I loved this episode. And the bit with Palmer passing out was just an added bonus, lol.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 7:16 pm 
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Sherry, that was the absolute best!!

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 7:56 pm 
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OMG I absolutely loved this episode!!! And I finally got my Tim/Gibbs basement scene!!!! :woohoo:

I loved all the Tim angst, and Palmer passing out.

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 05, 2017 7:09 am 
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Haha, I was thinking about all the people on NFA who wanted a Gibbs & McGee basement scene when that happened, and just when I was thinking it, my friend Sandy tweeted, "For all the people who wanted this scene..." #McNetwork strikes again. ;)

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 09, 2017 7:00 am 
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OMG yes, I totally broke into a huge grin! It was the best scene ever!

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 09, 2017 7:10 am 
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Twofer was a word I was not or should am familiar with now just finished a book where the word was used. Is it an American thing?

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 09, 2017 10:00 am 
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Yes, Pat. It comes from the expression "two for the price of one", but has been shortened to twofer.

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 09, 2017 10:01 am 
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If the first two episodes are any indication, this could be a good season for those who have dropped the show to start watching. Great Gibbs and McGee, good character development, decent storylines. Not sure if they'll keep it up, but I'm certainly pleased so far.

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 09, 2017 10:28 am 
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iheartGibbs wrote:
Yes, Pat. It comes from the expression "two for the price of one", but has been shortened to twofer.

I thought that when I read the book and they did say that just I'd never heard of it before, makes me want to say BOGOF or buy one get one free.

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 09, 2017 11:22 am 
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We say BOGO for that. ;D

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