Tonight’s episode of NCIS could have been titled “Orientation” instead of “Being Bad”, as the episode featured diverse groups of individuals getting acquainted—both the group being investigated and the group of investigators. When Bruno is murdered at a reunion of “military brats” educated at a high school on the Marine Corp base at Quantico, Leroy Jethro Gibbs’ newly reorganized team of five Special Agents join in their maiden investigation as a group. It was interesting to watch the immediate maneuvering on the part of Alex Quinn and Nick Torres. Tim McGee had adjusted to Ellie Bishop, a rookie joining the team, but now McGee has to deal with more experienced agents Quinn and Torres joining the team and the immediate jostling over desks, and location of the desks.

Since David was an NCIS and DEA agent, he is often asked if the NCIS show is realistic. One thing that is typical of a NCIS, DEA, or even an FBI squad bays, is the close proximity of desks with either no partitions, or low partitions. While it impacts privacy, it also contributes to cohesiveness as the team members can easily discuss cases, and even overhear phone conversations that effect cases on which they jointly work.

Was tonight’s show about high school students who organized a burglary ring that went undetected for years also a metaphor for Nick Torres’ eight years of working alone undercover? In several conversations between Torres and Gibbs we picked up that each man was questioning if Torres could work on the NCIS team or if he has some unresolved issues with his former “undercover self”. We saw McGee’s surprise when Torres failed to defer to Gibbs in the interrogation room. Neither he nor Bishop would ever have done so when new probies on the team. As it turned out, Torres was the one who got the suspected “fence” to begin talking after Gibbs failed.

Ducky, Jimmy, and Abbey have their share of screen time and involvement in solving the case. The way the plot unwound was a bit convoluted to our way of thinking. In the end, Gibbs flashes his signature smile. He is happy with the way the team is working together with all the changes. Are you?

Be Blessed, Diane and David Munso