Finally! Season 10 is off to a roaring start. After last season’s finale, Harper Dearing blew up NCIS headquarters to avenge the death of his son Lt. Evan Dearing. What happened to our family, to our team? Special Agent McGee is standing in the bombed out shell of an office, a shard of glass stuck in his side. Gibbs’s face is cut and bleeding. Tony and Ziva are trapped in an elevator, sharing endearing moments with their brother/sister bantering. Or is it something more? Abby is alive, yet her mind seems to have been imploded. Hope she gets help soon as she was way over the edge babbling nonsense and refusing to come into autopsy. Like fresh cream, Palmer rises to the top to help Ducky. Bravo to the newest “official” team member.
The writers serve up a feast of twists while offering clues how this near death experience will shape their futures. Ziva hears from her father, Eli David, while still trapped in the elevator. Tony is hopeful to receive a call from Anthony DeNozzo Sr., yet his phone does not ring. Palmer tries to convince Tim to call his dad. Harper Dearing no longer has anyone he cares about and he descends to a terrible low. He places his deceased brother’s body in a car to convince Gibbs and FBI supervisor Tobias Fornell that he’s blown himself up while the FBI swat team moves in. Then he bribes his widowed sister-in-law to tell Gibbs that Harper is really dead. When Ducky is finally well enough to return to the morgue for a visit he realizes the corpse suffered a fractured rib from CPR. Gibbs is dumbstruck—he’s been fooled again by Dearing. We are treated to really good writing and acting, and it is truly fun to see the squad back.
Now what about Gibbs asking for permission to go after Dearing alone? At first we thought perhaps Dearing would be a thorn in Gibbs’ side for weeks to come. Nope. In a real NCIS scenario, Vance would have nixed the idea; it is evidence Gibbs must have received a concussion or is on a vendetta. Vance is desperate to stop the killing and agrees to kill Dearing if Gibbs doesn’t make it. Gibbs’ instincts are correct: Dearing wants Gibbs to track him to his home where he enjoyed wonderful memories of his young son. But think of this. No commander in the world would risk losing the most dangerous terrorist since Osama Bin Laden to a single investigator. Then the writers and the technical adviser from NCIS mess up in a more serious way. Gibbs finds Dearing in the home bungling a pot of coffee, sees Dearing’s gun lying on the window sill, yet does nothing to stop what is put in motion. The father who was angry at terrorism murdering his son has become what he hated. Dearing is the maniacal terrorist and has blood on his hands. He seeks more as he turns his back on Gibbs and reaches for the gun.
In order for Gibbs to vent his raw anger, he steps in to stab Dearing, his eyes shining. Quit It! Every well trained police officer knows you never get close enough to let the criminal grab your gun (or in this case Gibbs’ knife). In real life, Gibbs should not have been there alone, and he would have stood at arm’s length and used his on gun on Dearing. The final act is brilliant and brought tears to our eyes as Evan Dearing tells his father he wanted to join the Navy because he loves America and wants to protect her. The tears are for the men and women in all our services, in harm’s way, fighting to give us freedom. May God bless you and give comfort to your families. Semper Fi.
Diane and David Munson