Tag Archives: Duane Henry

NCIS – Sight Unseen; 350 and counting

After 350 episodes, they decide to ‘celebrate’ by having Abby not know how to break into a mobile phone? Is she not the genius forensic scientist who has hacked her way into every techy item she’s been brought for the last fifteen years?

I ask, because at times maybe it was made to look too easy, but in fiction we don’t mind this, when it’s someone we love. What’s more, after the difficulty of accessing the information hidden on this phone, it proved to have almost no relevance, but was mainly a way of using up screen time for Abby.

If this is her level of [in]competence, it’s easy to see that they will need to replace her. But please God make it someone other than Ducky’s friend from a few weeks ago! I liked the actress well enough, but once the scriptwriters have ruined her character’s personality, it’s too late to make a first impression again. Hugging everyone in sight is not a prerequisite for a forensic scientist. It’s an Abby thing.

I can’t help but think back to the 100th episode, or the 250th, and the pride we felt at having supported NCIS this far. Compare that with my reaction on reading that season 16 had been given the go-ahead. I wished they hadn’t.

And was that some possible true romances for Bishop and Torres, or were they merely making each other jealous? We don’t need more team romantic entanglements.

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Abby’s last kiss

Wanting to ascertain more definitely whether the problem between Pauley Perrette and Mark Harmon stems from Mark’s dog’s attack on a crew member, I will only say that it’s a strange coincidence, date wise, if it isn’t something to do with Dave.

And we know what Gibbs says about coincidences.

Also, sixteen stitches is quite a lot. Especially if it’s your body.

My research has taken me as far as season 14, episode 7, which was screened on 15th November 2016. Home of the Brave it’s called, and it’s a pretty good one, with the possible exception of Quinn’s odd behaviour. It’s also the first episode – if you watch season 14 backwards, as I’ve been doing – that seems completely normal.

Abby and Gibbs interact as always, for about as long as you’d expect, and there is a kiss. The first one during my research viewing. Still no offer of a Caf-Pow from Gibbs, although there has been the odd drink from the others, when they call in at Abby’s lab. Because that’s the thing; as long as someone asks Abby about what she’s found, it takes a while to discover it’s not Gibbs doing the asking.

So I’ve been looking for normal conversation lasting reasonably long, Caf-Pow and kissing.

I’ve no idea when an episode goes live, how long it has been after it was recorded. Depending on a variety of facts, I imagine at least a few weeks, in which case a mid-November screening fits in with having been filmed maybe up to a month before.

The Dave incident happened ‘last week’ according to about four different reports in the press, all dated 26th October 2016.

Whether any of this relates to the flipping of episodes eight and nine, I have no idea. But it’s as annoying now as it was then; with Reeves and Torres chatting perfectly normally in the Thanksgiving episode, and being introduced to each other in the next, a couple of weeks later. Also, there is talk of an election in episode nine, which is surely wrong, when you vote in early November, but this was on one month later.

All this is too late to undo, now that we are about three weeks off Abby’s departure. It’s not just season 15 suffering from the split Gabbs scenes. Most of last season had it too, the decline gradual but palpable.

Watching the ‘next’ episode, i.e. no. six, brought home to me how very normal it was. And I remembered how we used to say that Abby seemed to have been sidelined after Quinn and Torres joined the show. Strikes me now her role was made smaller for another reason. We believed it was the new situation with the other agents to get used to, and the loss of DiNozzo.

I wonder what Michael Weatherly would have done about Dave?

Leave of Gabse-sense?

We made you big. Now it’s your turn to honour that, by providing us with NCIS episodes worthy of your fans’ devotion. Instead you are ‘thanking’ us by invariably serving up complete rubbish, with the odd silver nugget every now and then. I put those good moments down to unexpected good writing coupled with appropriate directing.

It just doesn’t happen often enough for a number one show.

Because it could do. It used to. If anyone on NCIS or CBS had time and inclination to revisit the past, you’d see how it ought to be done. You’d see what made you number one.

You made the show. Us, the fans, made you number one. We deserve better. Hell, even you deserve better.

Instead of this gradual weakening, which means you’ll go out with a whimper at some point in the future, you could make us one last terrific season of NCIS and go out with a bang. Something to remember you by. Something that would make some of us sad, and make us miss you.

Get it right!

As I understand it, the actors get paid well enough, although I suspect the male actors might be paid more. Mark Harmon is certainly rumoured to make a minor fortune for every episode. I almost wrote ‘earn’ but realised that he doesn’t earn anything the way he’s forgotten to act, or even caring about the show or the fans.

This week’s dance around Fornell? Embarrassing.

McGee has let himself go completely. It’s not the twins; it’s something much deeper that’s wrong. The beard, obviously, but there’s more to it. Or less, depending on how you see it.

Bishop is mostly the way she was, but comes across as quite mature by comparison. Torres is a treasure. He’s cool in way DiNozzo never was (although I recognise that Michael Weatherly was what kept people together), and kind at the same time.

Palmer is good, managing to be a cross between his old self and Ducky. I’m a bit disappointed now with Sloan, who seems to forget how an agent behaves and babbles about things all over the place, getting emotional. But that will be the script writers, not the actor.

Finally Abby. She’s not quite herself, but based on the rift between Pauley Perrette and Mark Harmon, that’s hardly surprising. I can’t work out how Abby’s going to go, but that almost doesn’t matter now. If the show is to continue (please no!) there needs to be a forensic scientist, but how they could make that work, I’ve no idea.

Back to the money. NCIS must make a fair bit of money, being number one and all that, and managing to pay its actors handsomely. I can’t help but feel that this means they have responsibilities too, to the viewers, and to their advertisers. It’s time you all worked for that money. It’s clearly too late for mature behaviour on the set, but I feel the money should pay for that as well.

So, you can’t – or won’t – have Abby and Gibbs on at the same time. If one or both of them is dangerous and a risk to others, the police should be told. If there is ‘merely’ a quarrel of some kind, a major CBS show like NCIS should be strong enough to make two actors work together like the adults they supposedly are.

Fixing it so they are never together is ruining not just season 15, but it really does take pleasure away from past seasons. Somehow you can’t un-see what is going on now. Watching season 14 backwards, you discover that the rift was already there. The last two episodes are almost totally free from overlap between the two, and the episodes before them have a really weird feel to them.

It’s too late to put all this right. I wish you could, because we really do deserve better. The odd, almost OK episode would almost make up for it, were it not for the Gabby split.

NCIS – Ready or Not

Babies, bullets and bombs; they all have to come out. Somehow.

OK, I thought I’d have no more NCIS posts until I’d found something else to waffle on about, but after last week’s weird episode, here we had a perfect Thanksgiving. A bit of crime, a bit of family.

Bishop and Gibbs

They were probably asking themselves how they could avoid a Christmas baby. Or how to manage a Thanksgiving baby instead. The answer to both is make it twins and it/they will be born early. Easy.

So the babies had to be born. And they had to avoid giving them really stupid names. That’s the problem with geeks like McGee and Delilah. But that nice man had a purpose. Well, he had two, and he performed them well. But remind me never to give birth assisted by Abby. (Unlikely at my age. But you never know.)

Delilah and Abby

Bullets. Yes. It hurts when they come out. Or so I understand. Nothing John Wayne about it. And that girl; I saw what she did.

Bombs. How could they send two such twits together, to deal with a potential bomb situation? Torres, and the man from MI6 who actually buys his cranberry sauce. Not even I do that.

But all’s well that ends well.

NCIS – Trapped

Well, well. After a week that offered duds in both Washington and LA, we get a Really Good Episode of NCIS! Thank you.

Checked online to see what others thought and found two ham radio fanatics going on about how wrong they were. Oh well.

If I was going to offer criticism, I’d say that much as I like Jack Sloane, she seems to be another Nate; someone who doesn’t have that much work to do, but a nice big office in which not to do it.

NCIS - Jack and Abby

And what’s going on with Abby? Is she leading up to her departure at the end of season 15 by being weird? At least she had her usual Halloween decorations in place, and it was the actual Halloween too.

Gibbs is not annoying right now, but he’s being quite un-Gibbs-like, I feel. And I’m not getting used to McGee’s beard, by which I mean it doesn’t suit him, rather than I am surprised to see it every week. But he’s getting bolder. He even tried to be a little Gibbsy this week. Bishop was mainly Bishop; neither good nor bad. Which is probably good.

After last week’s super-embarrassing Reeves performance, he was back to slightly more normal, and even quite funny with his ‘checking his mates’ comment. Didn’t have him down as the chess-playing type. And the scriptwriters seemed to have forgotten all about last week, which is just as well, if a little sloppy.

Palmer and Torres

But it’s Torres who is growing up fast, and Palmer. Together, over the charity donations, they were a force to be reckoned with. You could see that it would go wrong, but I didn’t quite guess where it was heading towards the end. Soppy, but sweet.

What I liked about Trapped was that all the parts were good; the dogwalker, the golfplayers, the garden centre people. Even the ham fanatic and his dog were good. It worked, and they all belonged together.

More of this please!

A misspent middle age

We got to chatting about actors who have appeared twice on NCIS, Daughter and I. Purely to relax, obviously. Also obviously, actors appearing twice as different characters. She mentioned one, while I could only remember another.

He was up a ladder outside a hotel room in one episode. Very briefly. ‘I think it was in Once A Hero,’ I said. I’ll have a look. ‘That’s season four,’ Daughter pointed out. ‘I know, it’s episode eight, if I’m not mistaken.’ (She was a bit put out by that…)

And once I found him – it was Francesco Quinn – I located the other episode, which was One Shot, One Kill, where he had a slightly longer part, although he died pretty quickly there too. Reading on about Francesco I discovered that, sadly, he died in 2011. Also that he was the son of Anthony Quinn, which was obvious when I knew, but I’d never thought to look him up on IMDb before.

The actor Daughter had had in mind was Clyde Kusatsu, and when we moved on to him I remembered both his roles, but felt he wasn’t quite as obviously the same actor. Benjamin Franklin, made fun of by DiNozzo, was rather different from Ducky’s gardener and very good friend of Mrs Mallard’s, in The Tie That Binds.

In fact, the reason Francesco Quinn was so much more memorable, is that the episodes were older. That was back when we watched them ‘quite a lot.’ Whereas the gardener appeared in last year’s NCIS, which I might have watched once, maybe twice. And I absolutely couldn’t have named the season or the episode.

These days I don’t even have time to misspend my time.

NCIS – ‘House Divided’

My prayers have been answered. And it wasn’t a bad episode as season starters go. But don’t you find that beards grow in a funny way? Neatly and not as overall rampantly as you’d expect after a certain amount of time. I’m guessing Sean Murray and Mark Harmon didn’t get long enough to cultivate their wildest looks.

McGee

So, no Quinn. Thank goodness. And with the more senior agents engaged elsewhere, the team lead went to someone relatively new, with the help of two even newer agents and Dr Palmer behaving more grown-up than ever. And as for politics – and hot dogs – on the Hill, well it’s a weird world we live in.

Torres

The doings in Paraguay were fairly standard, as these things go; season starter with one or more agents in an awkward situation far away. But they’ve been trained, and know what to do. Same thing ‘at home.’ When the ‘parents’ are away, the ‘children’ can often cope far better than you’d think. Delilah helped, although it seems that where I believed Bishop was speaking in code, she was merely being indiscreet…

Clayton, Torres and Bishop

Floor time. I like it!

Unless we are all too traumatised to carry on, I reckon we can now go back to the way we were. And I expect at least Gibbs will lose the beard. I hope McGee does, because he’s really not the beard type. Besides, he needs to learn how to change nappies.

Torres

Torres did well. No one ate the raisins off the floor, but there was just desserts for someone, at a time when I don’t even hope for them. Here’s to next week. It’s a date.

Gibbs

(Photos © CBS)