NCIS: Los Angeles

Season 1 Episode 5


Aired Sunday 9:00 PM Oct 20, 2009 on CBS

Episode Fan Reviews (6)

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out of 10
243 votes
  • I wanted to give this 6, and in many ways it deserved it but for the one flaw...

    In many ways this was a typical NCIS style episode, which means it was good. It was fast-paced, with some nice banter between Callen & Sam, good vignettes by Rocky Carroll as Director Vance (or, as we learned in NCIS itself, the man who may have been masquerading as Vance for several decades), some sharp scenes from Hetty and good work from the other characters - Eric, Kensie, Dominic, etc. There was a small but decent red herring in that the killer of the business partner wasn't who everyone thought, and we got character development in that Kensie is revealed to be able to lip-read. Unfortunately, I couldn't give it more stars because Vance said the assassin was a fanatical North Korean "who hasn't been home in 3 decades". 3 decades is 30 years and I'm sorry, she was patently too young. Unless her character was despatched as a literal child killer by Kim Il Jong, her character had to be at least 46 years old as we were supposed to believe her to be a contemporary of Vance. If he's said, "a decade," that would have been perfectly plausible, or even "two decades" - still believable if pushing it. But no way was she old enough to have spent 30 years living hand-to-mouth on the run across the entire planet. I know this is my soapbox a bit, but whether you a writing a novel a play or you're a scriptwriter for a TV show, you have to make your characters realistic according to the 'universe' in which they inhabit. There are great actresses that can play that age role - Mary Steenbergen in Back to the Future III was perfect casting - Susan Sarandon, Sigourney Weaver, Meryl Streep, etc, etc. NCIS is a good show, but Shane Brennan needs to keep his eye on things like this, which let down a fairly good episode. For example, rumour has it Pauley Perrette will guest-star and be kidnapped. Since we all know that LJ Gibbs will move the stars in their courses to protect his Gothic Girl, does that mean Mark Harmon will also guest-star - it would completely wreck plausibility for Callen and Sam to make the save and Gibbs (not to mention the rest of Abbie's friends McGee, Ziva, etc) not to turn up because he got stuck at Dulles airport. You have to make sure the writing is completely believable within the scenario you are creating - it's why shows like Stargate and Supernatural and Bones are so good, because they make it possible that, 'yes this could happen in the real world'.