Between a Gibbs/Leon cameo and prisoners on the lam, NCIS:NOLA felt a bit adrift this week.
So last week – the second episode of the series, mind you – involved a plot-relevant visit from none other than Tony DiNozzo. This week – the third episode of the series, mind you – involved a… visit… I’m not quite sure why… from the one and only Leroy Jethro Gibbs. If Abbs and Pleasantly Awkward But Bordering On Creepy McLab Guy have to geek out about something next week1 for any reason, I will start to suspect that CBS fears the NOLA edition isn’t capable of standing on its own. That would be odd, especially with the mothership lead in.
Let’s worry about that next week, and instead briefly touch on another instance where, if the show will just let things stand on their own, we’ll all be better off. This week included a brief scene where all three agents surround and capture a fugitive and what struck me was that all three were on completely equal footing. All three are veteran agents, equally skilled in fieldworking and researching. So late in the episode when the bad guy gets the drop on the female agent and Pride has to rescue her with a dramatic, perfect shot, I grumbled a little. I get that the math on this series will be restrictive,2 but that’s just half-assing it, writers. Give Agent Brody some consistency to her competency, and let her character foibles show up in the banter and codas. We’re not gaining anything interesting on this team by being boring in the gender roles. Honestly, it would have been great to see Pride rescue LaSalle instead.
The New Orleans Tally
- Visit to a town called Moss Point, Mississippi. This place exists, and my that’s a southern name.
- How about a bit of ‘We do things different ’round here’? Pride tells Leon3 that, if he wants Pride’s badge, he knows where to find it.
- A heaping helping of shrimp boil. Points off for it originating with an online recipe.
On the other side of the ledger, this literally could have been from any of the NCIS series:
- A sudden trip to a ship “in the middle of the Atlantic”. Navy ships all look the same, and tend to lack those cultural touches that anchor4 them geographically.
- Bits of machismo strewn about here and there.
- A surprising reveal that it was actually the third, least threatening, seemingly caught in the cross-fire guy who was the mastermind the whole time!
This week’s NCIS:NOLA was set south of the Mason-Dixon line, but further specifics are classified.
I know that high-value prisoners are sometimes transported in low-key ways, purloined letter-style, but was the plan really to drive this major terrorist-type bad guy all the way from New Orleans to Charlotte5… via bus? With one guard? If the prisoners hadn’t fomented escape so early in the trip, surely it would only be because no one wanted to film the classic prison break trope of waiting for a bathroom break at an isolated diner, named Diner.
If This Week’s Episode of NCIS:NOLA Was a Children’s Book Instead, It Would Be Called:
Mr. McLab Guy Wants a Date