Critique of 1/15/13 NCIS episode “Shiva”

Martha Rogers Informal 1We welcome author/writer Martha Rogers to the Two ExFed News Wrap blog. Martha has prepared the following critique of last night’s episode of NCIS, “Shiva”.
“First off, I know nothing about being a federal agent or the workings of NCIS. I am a fan of the show because of the great plots and wonderful characters. As a writer, I look for these things as I watch shows and decide on the ones that are worth the time.
Last week the show began with an unexpected encounter between Ziva and her father. She learns that he is traveling without the knowledge of his security detail. At the same time a body is discovered in a lake and the NCIS team is sent to investigate. The writers weave a story that intertwines the body of Tyler Wilkes, Ziva’s father, the team, Director Vance, and his wife with the relations of Israel and Iran.
All the connections were made and the plot grew deeper as Ziva discovered her father’s part in the death of Tyler just before the dinner at the Vance’s. Then the attack on the home leaves Jackie Vance and Eli David dead. When Gibbs talks with Ziva as she holds her dead father, her eyes say it before she speaks it…she wants revenge.
Tonight gave us more emotion and a Tony who isn’t all wisecracks. We’ve seen this side of him developing and tonight’s episode brings him and Ziva even closer in their relationship. Tony finds her in the synagogue and ends up taking her home with him for protection. He brings in her old friend Schmiel to give her comfort. Their final scene at the airport as she leaves with her father is, to say the least, emotional and gives a glimpse of what their relationship might become.
The team works without Ziva who is arranging for her father’s body to be returned to Israel. They track the source of the money for the assassin and find an offshore account. Gibbs uses a tracking device to find Kasmi and bring him in for questioning. The Iranian promises to cooperate fully with Gibbs in find Eli’s killer.
Eli’s men from Israel arrive looking for him and Ziva. Elon is told Eli is dead, but Gibbs won’t reveal Ziva’s location. Elon is not happy about being left out of the investigation and goes on his own to find Ziva.
The scenes between Gibbs and Vance gives more depth to Leon’s character as he realizes exactly what is behind Gibbs dedication to his job and his unorthodox way of doing his job. When the money for the killer is found, it leads to an account with the name “Virtue.” This leads them to asking Ziva if it means anything to her. She realizes the Hebrew word for virtue is Elon’s middle name.
Elon of course has disappeared, and Gibbs must now release Kasmi who is to return to Iran. Any fan of the show knows what comes next, and we are not disappointed as Kasmi’s car explodes on the way to the airport.
The final scenes switching back and forth from Jackie Vance’s funeral to Ziva in Israel are powerful and loaded with emotion as two people face the burial of a loved one on opposite sides of the world. The last scene where she plants an olive tree then wipes the blade of her knife across her thigh then stares into the camera lets us know this story is far from over.”
Editor’s note: You may recognized Martha Rogers (a subscriber to this blog) from her occasional comments. Martha is a retired school teacher and author of the series of novels, “Winds Across the Prairie”, available where ever good books are sold and on . She lives in Texas with her husband. We are thankful for her contribution to this blog.

By |2017-05-19T13:10:24+00:00January 16th, 2013|NCIS|8 Comments


  1. Martha Rogers January 16, 2013 at 4:39 pm - Reply

    What a privilege to write this blog for Diane and David. I’ve loved this show since the first spin-off from JAG. Thank you for the opportunity. I hope everyone enjoyed the show and new insights into Tony and Ziva as characteristics came to light that we seldom see.

  2. Jackie January 16, 2013 at 9:14 pm - Reply

    I loved these episodes. I cried when Eli died, and then cried again over Jackie’s death. (Yes, I know it’s fiction.)
    The romantic in me wants Tony to save Ziva and her to at last realize what a great guy he is.
    I’ll enjoy watching them hunt down “Virtue.”
    It was nice to see Vance and Gibbs connect better.
    I’ve watched NCIS for years, and it’s continued entertain me week after week.

    • danddmunson January 16, 2013 at 11:21 pm - Reply

      Jackie thanks for watching the show and for interacting with the rest of the fans on this blog.

  3. Rikki January 20, 2013 at 12:05 am - Reply

    Martha, Thank you for this great review. I felt it so heartbreaking to watch Ziva lose her father, and then to experience Director Vance losing his beloved. I know it’s just a show with characters, but I found myself hoping they would not experience the repercussions of being at odds with their loved ones upon the time of their death. I can’t wait for the next episode. Again – Great Job!!!

  4. Michael January 20, 2013 at 3:26 am - Reply

    I’m just curious, but does anyone know who performed the sound track at the end of the show? Was that Ziva? It was gorgeous.

  5. Martha Rogers January 21, 2013 at 4:26 am - Reply

    Thank you, Rikki. I’m glad you liked it. Their emotions were so real, and as I writer, I get caught up with my characters and forget they’re not “real” people.

    Michael, I don’t know who performed on the soundtrack at the end, but I agree, it was beautiful music and so fit the scenes with it.

    • Michele January 23, 2013 at 5:21 pm - Reply

      The music at the end is “You Are Not Alone” by Patty Griffin. It’s a beautiful song and while I was searching for information, I came across this posting, so I came back once I found what I was looking for. For future reference, I found the information at

      • danddmunson January 24, 2013 at 3:08 am - Reply

        Thank you Michele. We are fortunate that we have you as part of this community.

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