NCIS: Los Angeles

Season 1 Episode 16

Chinatown

5
Aired Monday 10:00 PM Mar 02, 2010 on CBS
AIRED:
6.9
out of 10
User Rating
185 votes
4

EPISODE REVIEWS
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Episode Summary

When a lieutenant commander's death appears to be a suicide, the team is ordered to investigate to determine if the top-secret project he was working on has been compromised. Nate is assigned to partner with Kensi during this operation.

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • Chinatown

    6.5
    Sometimes this show is really good, and sometimes it's just average. Tonight was one of those nights. Sometimes the plots just really never get off and you just feel that what is going on could be a condensed into a three minute video on YouTube.



    The action scenes are always fun though, and I think the producers know that as they have been beefing the percentage of them up in recent episodes. But eventually that will not be enough. The show needs to have good characters and action, like Burn Notice does. NCIS: LA and NCIS' characters are like Verizon and AT&T, when you compare there's no comparison.moreless
  • A good, but inconsistent episode.

    7.0
    I really don't know what to make of this episode. By the end it really had me intrigued and entertained. Yet much of the way through, I was feeling disappointed and unhappy with the storyline.



    Initially it felt as if this episode was suffering from the short-coming of the earlier episodes, that the producers were making "The Callen and Hanna Show", rather than an NCIS series, where each team member's major role was to support Callen and Hanna in their efforts.



    Then suddenly, Blye was allowed to come into her own by the end, this was fantastic.



    Though the treatment of the Operational Psychologist Nate Getz character was inconsistent. At times he was the consummate professional, yet at others he was simply comic-relief –comic-relief, so badly done that it made me cringe. I guess the writers were trying to show the different sides of his character, but it just didn't work. (The original NCIS has humour in it, but does it without making any of the characters appear foolish.)



    In the end, Getz came across as a far cry from the Getz of the Legends episodes, the Getz who dared to confront Gibbs and tell him how wrong he was about the sorely missed Special Agent Lara Macy.



    As I've mentioned before, in the Legend episodes, he came across as the type of team member Gibbs was missing in his own group, ever since Kate was dispensed with, someone who can read people, someone astute, confident and able to provide insight on people, behaviours and personalities, and then able to deduce somewhat accurately how they would behave in a given situation. I saw him as a cross between Lightman from Lie to Me and Jane from The Mentalist. This type of character isn't –shouldn't be- comic-relief of the kind where he comes across as foolish, or naive, or just plain silly.



    Now for the missing Dom issues: This has gone on long enough.



    In every NCIS episode where a regular team member has gone missing, the rest of the team has worked above and beyond the possible to get them back by the end of the episode. Here everyone seems to be dragging their heels.



    Even in the NCIS LA episode where Abby appeared, only to go missing, the cavalry in the form of Gibbs' team (also with no real lead to go on) were said to be on the flight out, ready to get into the fray.



    Where is Dom's cavalry?moreless
  • When a Lieutenant Commander and the new XO of a top secret sub mission commits suicide the team must figure out if the mission has been compromised. Through a series of actions they turn up a lot more than they ever thought possible from a suicide.moreless

    7.5
    A very questionable episode in both the plot line and some of the acting as well. In most cases it's either the acting or the script. In this its a little bit of both.



    I do like where the story gets to and the plot itself is fairly clever. The pieces don't seem to quite fit in places and the acting is a little stilted at times. The ending is a great example. The story looks like it's ending on a positive warm and fuzzy tone and then, bang, it gets weirdly awkward. You just feel like time after time the story gets derailed either by a humorous moment or an awkward one.



    In this episode it's mostly Nate played by Peter Cambor that brings the awkward moments. The funny scenes were more strange than funny and the acting by the whole cast seemed a little wooden in those scenes.



    I did like the idea of the episode. A sleeper agent actually born and raised in the US. Born to spy on his native land by his parents and other people in the community with ties to a foreign power. With a lot of the press today the idea does not seem so far fetched at all.



    I'm not sure what it is about this series. It started out pretty well, but has turned into one mediocre episode after another. It's a shame really. Well they'll have a few years to work it out as the show was renewed quite a while ago and probably will be on for a number of years. It does make you appreciate the original even more though. Thanks for reading...moreless
  • I'm not convinced by this one.

    8.0
    This wasn't the cream of the crop in NCIS: Los Angeles episodes, by any means. In fact, I thought it wasn't that great, atll.



    The storyline was quite good, and thre were several interesting moments. I particularly enjoyed the first half of the episode, but I was a little apprehensive about the second half.



    If this is any indication, I actually fell asleep for about 5 or 10 minutes of this episode. (But I was pretty tired!!!)



    Regardless, I think that teh show is headed off in the right direction. Not with this episode, but the three or four before this one have been absolutely breathtaking!



    I wouldn't recommend this one too highly, but still, if you like this show, give it a try!moreless
Chris O'Donnell

Chris O'Donnell

NCIS Special Agent G. Callen

Linda Hunt

Linda Hunt

Henrietta 'Hetty' Lange

LL Cool J

LL Cool J

NCIS Special Agent Sam Hanna

Peter Cambor

Peter Cambor

Operational Psychologist Nate Getz

Daniela Ruah

Daniela Ruah

NCIS Special Agent Kensi Blye

Barrett Foa

Barrett Foa

Tech Operator Eric Beal

Featured Episode Clip

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

FILTER BY TYPE

  • TRIVIA (2)

    • Goof: In the scene where they are showing the mug shot of Robert Tang, there are two pictures in the mug shot. In the frontal view, he has an injury on his right cheek, but in the side view, the same injury is shown on his left cheek!

    • "Hiragana" is a type of Japanese letters. It is unlikely that a Chinese gang would name themselfs after a Japanese term.

  • QUOTES (10)

    • Callen: Kensi, check out the home...and bring Nate.
      Nate: You're actually letting me out again?
      Callen: On a short leash.
      Kensi: And a muzzle.
      Sam: (to Kensi) Clean up after him.
      Nate: (to Eric) You want a piece of this too?
      Eric: Um-uh...Don't let him hump your leg.

    • Sam: What are the chances this isn't a suicide?
      Eric: I'd say about zero percent.
      Callen: What do you know that we don't?
      Eric: Mmm.. The words to every TV theme song.

    • Kensi: Relationship gone sour?
      Nate: Well, It's been known to happen. Of course, you have to be in a relationship first.
      Kensi: Was that aimed at me?
      Nate: I'm just bustin' your …… chops, chops. Like partners do.
      Kensi: You're not my partner.
      Nate: Right.
      Kensi: Don't make me get the muzzle.

    • Callen: You alright, big guy?
      Sam: You know what today is?
      Callen: Wednesday?
      Sam: It's Tuesday.
      Callen: You sure? Feels like a Wednesday.
      Sam: Five weeks to the day since Dom went missing and we're here picking through roadside trash 'cause some distraught meatball offed himself.
      Callen: Sam, if we had something new to go on, anything new, anything at all, we'd be on it twenty-four seven. You know that, but we've got nothing.
      Sam: And it's gonna stay that way as long as we're out here wasting our time with this sort of thing.
      Callen: This isn't a waste of time. The security of the men and the technology on that submarine remain in question. Besides that, Calvin Lee had a family, at the very least, we're gonna give them closure. That's the same thing we're gonna do for Dom's family, someday.

    • (Watching the video of Calvin's suicide)
      Eric : Maybe he's throwing his gum out?
      Callen: Yeah, 'cause you wouldn't want to choke on your gum before you strangle yourself to death.
      Eric: I don't know.
      Sam: Clearly!

    • Callen: You know what I like about metal furniture?
      Sam: Who you kidding, G? What do you know about designer furniture?
      Callen: I dabble in things.
      Sam: You do things, you break things, you don't dabble in things. (Callen glares at him) You don't.

    • Nate: Hetty, can I ask you a...?
      Hetty: (interrupting) No!
      Nate: You didn't even know what I was going to ask you.
      Hetty: Will it cost me money?
      Nate: Uh, I don't think so.
      Hetty: Does it involve any legal issues?
      Nate: No, no, no. I just want to ask you a hypothetical question.
      Hetty: Oh. You mean, like a riddle?
      Nate: Sure.
      Hetty: Ask away.
      Nate: Have you ever known an Operational Psychologist who became an agent?
      Hetty: (Looks at him, staring, Nate begins to walk away) Kerwood Ames, a brilliant man. He pioneered several profiling techniques.
      Nate: Wow! Is he still with the agency?
      Hetty: No, he was killed in his second week on the job. Or was it his second day?
      Nate: Oh.
      Hetty: Ames had a gifted mind but he tended to think logically, invaluable for a scientist, not so much for an agent. Choices they make on the street don't always seem to make sense to the untrained eye, which is probably what keeps them alive. Why do you ask?
      Nate: Uh, uh. Just curious.
      Hetty: Admirable quality, curiosity, unless, of course, you're a cat.

    • (At the boathouse with two suspects in custody, nursing injuries)
      Callen: That guy got me in the face. And I'm not even going to tell you where the guy upstairs got me.
      Sam: The guy in the hospital bit me.
      Hetty: (comes walking in) I see the Ice and Aspirin Club is at it again. Every time I come here, I feel like I've stepped into a damn Hardy Boys novel. I gather that, uh, you couldn't talk your way out of this one.
      Callen: Yeah, we had a little bit of a language barrier.
      Hetty: And an "I want you dead" barrier. (Hetty gives each of them an ice pack)

    • Kensi: (to Nate) You know, you're not that bad a partner, after all.
      Nate: Really? 'Cause I asked Hetty if Operational Psychologists have ever become agents.
      Sami: Uh, no.
      Callen: No, no, no.
      Kensi: No, I'm sorry. I so, take it back.
      Nate: I know I'm logical, but I'm also intuitive, self sufficient, hmmm.
      Callen, Sam & Kensi: (in unison as they walking away) NO!

    • (Sam is quizzing Callen on why he was late)
      Sam: You don't have a TV, you don't read the newspaper, you clearly don't spend any time getting ready.
      Callen: Maybe I was working out.
      Sam: Huh, you don't work out.
      Callen: I run.
      Sam: Yeah, when people are shooting at us!
      Callen: You know what? I slept in.
      Sam: With who? You barely sleep.
      Callen: There's nobody.
      Sam: Come on, I think it would be great for you to be in a relationship.
      Callen: Sam, how many times do we have this conversation--you're my partner, not my mother.
      Sam: (makes a woman's voice) I just want you to be happy and find a good girl.

  • NOTES (2)

    • Music:
      Walking in L.A. by Missing Persons

    • International Air Dates:
      Canada: March 2, 2010 on Global
      United Kingdom: April 26, 2010 on Sky1/Sky1 HD
      Sweden: June 1, 2010 on TV3
      Norway: June 21, 2010 on TV3
      Germany: October 23, 2010 on SAT 1
      Finland: December 1, 2010 on Nelonen
      Czech Republic: February 18, 2011 on AXN
      Slovakia: September 22, 2011 on Markiza

  • ALLUSIONS (0)

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