NCIS

Season 4 Episode 14

Blowback

2
Aired Tuesday 8:00 PM Feb 06, 2007 on CBS
8.8
out of 10
User Rating
338 votes
18

EPISODE REVIEWS
By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

EDIT

After catching an international arms dealer, the NCIS team learns that Navy's highly classified weapons system will be sold to "La Grenouille," an important arms dealer. To stop the transaction, the team will send Ducky undercover. Meanwhile, another government agency appears to be working on the same case, with different plans.

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • When fiction meets reality...

    10
    As a french-canadian living in Quebec ( the small airport scene ) or as I prefer to call myself: Quebecois.

    I was more than suprise to hear some french in an american series. Even more when, after Gibbs complained as to why Ducky and La Grenouille were talking in french, McGee replies : They are in Quebec.



    If anyone knows of the fact that in Quebec most people have french origins and speak french and are proud of it all. French is even the official language of the province ( French and English are official language of Canada ) Bravo to the writers for the good research although I suspect one of them to be Quebecois ( of origin at least )



    Love the show, each episode is a delight but this one will be at the top of my favorite list.moreless
  • Well done, this was a terrific episode!

    10
    This time, NCIS has upped its game, and produced a quite remarkable episode, which was full of it all - the great suspense, the comedy aspect which I love and of course, the great plot!



    I loved the chase scene when Charles Harrow dies, and the 'chased him to death' quote was funny. There were also some other funny quotes, such as "This duck is cooked - no pun intended" by McGee. I found that to be a great moment!



    I also loved seeing a little more to Ducky, and seeing a different side to him by having him go undercover. I thought that was a great idea by the writers!



    Overall, I recommend this episode really highly because of all the previous factors that I mentioned, as well as the fact that this storyline has future significance.



    Terrific job by NCIS!moreless
  • Jenny's obsession is causing problems.

    9.5
    Tony's side-assignment is becoming a serious problem – Gibbs is twitching and Tony's reaction to the photo of the guy from the restaurant and Gibbs saw it. Gibbs isn't stupid – Tony runs straight to Jenny, then Gibbs walks in on Tony perched on Jenny's desk. Jenny's obsession is becoming an issue - willing to cross the border to grab La Grenouille. What a disappointment for Jenny – told to stand down because of a CIA sting operation.



    It must be something of a relief to Ziva who was worrying about Tony – the downside is that if Ziva really is falling for Tony, it means his disappearances are connected to the mystery woman which means Tony's serious.moreless
  • Ducky goes undercover

    10
    This episode opens with a man leaving a building and someone in a van is following him. He starts to run and they chase after him in the van. Just as he is about to become free. She people in masks put him into the van and injection with something. We then see that the two people are Tony & Ziva. Have they gone rogue or is this a new case for the team. He wakes up to be on an airplane with Gibbs Tony & Ziva. They learn about a deal he is making to buy a piece of Navy software, which the Navy doesn't want in the wrong hands. We learn that one of the buyers of the software is involved in the undercover case which Tony is also involved in. One of the investors of the software (who is selling it to the highest bidder), is being followed by Ziva & McGee. He spots them and runs. They give chase and when they catch up to him, he has collapsed. They soon discover that he has died. Ducky believes that he died due to a heart attack. They learn that he set up the met with the highest bidder, and since he is dead they need someone to pose him. The highest bidder is Jenny's old enemy "The Frog". Ducky is seen undercover. The trade off goes as planned and Ducky manages to pull it off. At the end we learn that one of the Frogs people are working against him. We learn that he is CIA.moreless
  • great episode

    10
    The NCIS team go after an international arms dealer. They get him to confess to having knowledge of another arms dealer that's about to sell top secret military technology to a weapons trafficker. It's a really exciting episode. It involves international weapons traffickers. This is the kind of episodes that raises the level of excitement of the show. The writers came up with a really cool plot. The episode is quite suspenseful. The story kept me on the edge of my seat. I really enjoyed watching this episode. I can't wait for the next one. There's always something new coming on NCIS.moreless
Mark Harmon

Mark Harmon

Special Agent Leroy Jethro Gibbs

Michael Weatherly

Michael Weatherly

Special Agent Tony DiNozzo

Cote de Pablo

Cote de Pablo

Mossad Agent Ziva David

Pauley Perrette

Pauley Perrette

Forensics Specialist Abby Sciuto

Sean Murray (I)

Sean Murray (I)

Special Agent Tim McGee

Lauren Holly

Lauren Holly

Director Jenny Shepard

Corey Stoll

Corey Stoll

Martin Quinn

Guest Star

Assaf Cohen

Assaf Cohen

Eli "Goliath" Lisack

Guest Star

Jim Parrack

Jim Parrack

Nick Hurley

Guest Star

Armand Assante

Armand Assante

La Grenouille

Recurring Role

David Dayan Fisher

David Dayan Fisher

Trent Kort

Recurring Role

Stephanie Mello

Stephanie Mello

NCIS Tech Cynthia Sumner

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

FILTER BY TYPE

  • TRIVIA (13)

    • TRIVIA: Shepard says that the name of the man who first meets Ducky in Quebec is "Quinn Martin." This play on words is most likely a homage of sorts to Quinn Martin, the man who was the American television producer responsible for several successful crime dramas during the 1960s and 1970s, including the FBI, the Fugitive, the Untouchables, and The Streets of San Francisco.

    • GOOF: The line "Napoleon was the first to drink this cognac at his coronation in 1802" is incorrect since Napoleon was crowned in 1804.

    • GOOF: At the end of the scene before the intro, we see the camera on Tony with Ziva turning her head to face him. Then in the next shot, the camera is on Ziva, but she's starting to move her hair before turning her head to face Tony.

    • TRIVIA: It is revealed that Shepard has been chasing La Grenouille for over a decade.

    • GOOF: A real arms dealer wouldn't go to meet a buyer alone and unarmed as Ducky did undercover. Otherwise, chances are that the buyer would merely rob him of his goods, rather than paying. Also, since the payment was to be in diamonds, he would have needed to have an expert with him to verify that the diamonds were real, and that they were the correct weight and worth the agreed upon price.

    • Gibbs Rule #1: "Never screw over your partner."

    • TRIVIA: We learn that La Grenouille is actually named Rene, and has three children and two grandchildren.

    • TRIVIA: The GPS location 45° 26' 19" N 71° 41' 29" W is of the actual Sherbrooke airfield, Québec, Canada. According Google Earth, the location is the exact center of the airstrip.

    • TRIVIA: When Ducky is going undercover, Abby was explaining him about the Ares encryption keys and she says: "...legacy keys generated by PGP." It's very interesting the NAVY would use very simple free to download civilian encryption technology called: "Pretty Good Privacy" and not something specially built for the NAVY.

    • TRIVIA: When the team is "playing" "Goliath" in the plane they say they are taking him to "Zaire". Zaire existed during the 1971-1997 years and than it was renamed into its original name "Democratic Republic of the Congo" or also known as "Congo-Kinshasa." As this episode was aired in 2007 the country they are "going" to exists only in the past.

    • TRIVIA: In the scene where the team is trying to break Goliath there is a moment when Goliath talks about Ares. Tony answers with Cancer, Gibbs with Virgo, and Ziva with Scorpio. These astrological signs are the same birth signs as the actors who play the parts (i.e. Michael Weatherly is a Cancer and Mark Harmon is a Virgo).

    • TRIVIA: In this episode, Ziva is surprised to find out that McGee has had a manicure. According to the episode "Iced," Ziva already knew that Mcgee has had one. When the team was walking on the ice, Tony announces that McGee has had a manicure where in return McGee blames it on a torn cuticle.

    • TRIVIA: While at the airport Ziva and Tony work under the codename Archangel. Archangel was the codename of Michael Coldsmith-Briggs III a government agent in Airwolf, a Bellisario production of the mid 80's. Tony has previously shown himself to be an Airwolf fan using the alias Stringfellow in "Dead Man Talking" (S1). Stingfellow Hawke was the lead character in the series during the first three seasons.

  • QUOTES (18)

    • Goliath: (talking about having information to save his life) ARES.
      Tony: Cancer.
      Gibbs: Virgo.
      Ziva: Scorpio.

    • McGee: Boss, we got a problem.
      Gibbs: Just one, McGee?
      McGee: Grenouille is sure to have someone there to vet ARES. You know, if he asks Ducky to explain something, his duck is cooked. No pun intended.

    • McGee: Aeroport de Sherbrooke, southeastern Quebec. It's 30 miles across the border from New Hampshire. Puts La Grenouille right in our backyard.
      Gibbs: Did I miss Quebec becoming the 51st state?

    • (Talking about La Grenouille)
      Ziva: Why don't we snatch him when he lands, toss him in the back of the trunk, and drive over the border.
      McGee: That might work where you grew up Ziva, but not here.
      Jenny: Why not?
      (The team stares at Jenny)

    • Director Shepard: I will get him, another time, another deal. I will be there and I will get him.
      Gibbs: Are you sure you want to?
      Shepard: Of course I want to!
      Gibbs: Some people need to have someone to hate.
      Shepard: Not me.
      Gibbs: Then you should have let Ziva take the shot...

    • Goliath: Please, I, I am very wealthy. I have diamonds.
      Tony: Oooh, you had diamonds. This jet is very expensive and somebody had to pay for it. Heh, heh.

    • Goliath: Zaire, you're taking me to Zaire?
      Ziva: You sold a shipment of RPG's to their army. They are very disappointed for the quality.
      Tony: I believe the President of Zaire himself is eager to discuss how you stiffed him.

    • (stepping out of the plane)
      Goliath: This isn't Tenerife.
      Tony: Well, I told them to take a left at Bermuda.

    • Ziva: This is going to be like looking for a needle in a needlestack.
      Tony: Needle in a haystack.
      Ziva: I like my description better.

    • (in car, while driving)
      McGee: These streets are like a maze.
      Ziva: I told you I couldn't program the navigator. I am a driver.
      McGee: Ziva, I've driven with you before. I'd rather be lost than dead. 205 Rosewood Drive northwest. That's it, it's the one with the car pulling out of the driveway.
      Ziva: We could race ahead, swerve right, brake hard and cut him off.
      McGee: Or we could just wait for him to stop.

    • Ducky: I just signed the death certificate for Mr...ah, am I interrupting something?
      Jenny: Yes, we were just discussing all the ways NCIS could have killed Harrow other than running him to death!

    • Ziva: Just when you get used to American culture you see a grown man get his nails done.
      McGee: There's nothing wrong with a man treating himself to a manicure.
      Ziva: Ha! Don't tell me!
      McGee: I have sensitive cuticles.

    • Ziva: (after pretending to drop the Ares satellite computer) I find a little levity before the start of a mission to be relaxing.

    • Abby: I like this guy! Well, except for the fact that he was about to commit treason.

    • Tony: Well, size doesn't matt...forget I even started to say that.

    • Ducky: Rigorous for most; rigor mortis for him.

    • Abby: Gibbs! You slayed Goliath!
      Gibbs: Well, it was either him or you, Abbs.

    • Ziva: Will you tell me who she is if I find the pirates version of the micro chip?
      Tony: The pirated version. A pirate is a person, like Capt. Jack Sparrow.
      Ziva: Who is Jack Sparrow?
      Tony: Johnny Depp!?!?
      Ziva: He is a pirate?
      Tony: No, he's an actor!!!! How did we get here?
      Ziva: I drove.

  • NOTES (2)

    • Original International Airdates:
      Denmark: February 13, 2007 on TV3
      Sweden: March 18, 2007 on TV3
      Australia: May 8, 2007 on TEN
      Belgium: May 20, 2007 on VT4
      Germany: June 3, 2007 on SAT 1
      United Kingdom: July 10, 2007 on FX UK
      Spain: July 26, 2007 on La Sexta
      The Netherlands: September 5, 2007 on Veronica
      Italy: October 14, 2007 on RAI 2
      Finland: January 6, 2009 on Nelonen
      Slovakia: June 12, 2009 on Markiza
      Czech Republic: October 12, 2009 on TV Nova

    • The outcome of this episode, the software for sale having a "safety flaw" built in, is similar to the outcome of a season 1 episode of JAG, titled "Smoked," where the targeting software of a downed F-14 Tomcat has a virus that will activate if it is used by Iran against the US.

  • ALLUSIONS (10)

    • When La Grenouille opens the cognac, he mentions to Ducky that Napoleon was the first person to receive a bottle of that brand. Armand Assante played Napoleon in the 1987 television miniseries Napoleon and Josephine: A Love Story.

    • Abby: Hey, maybe it has the original Donkey Kong on it.

      Donkey Kong is an arcade game made in 1981 video game created by famous Japanese Shigeru Miyamoto.

    • Tony (to Gibbs): Here's the deal... We jump into Casablanca, hit Rick's Cafe for a little cocktail. I could tickle the ivories... Here's looking at you kid.

      This is a reference to a classic 1942 movie Casablanca starring Ingrid Bergman (Lisa) and Humphrey Bogart (Rick). "Here's looking at you kid." is the last line Rick says to Lisa.

    • Right before Ducky embarks on his mission, he says "tallyho." David McCallum co-starred in the film The Great Escape as a POW, in which "tallyho" was a code used by the prisoners.

    • Tony's question to Goliath on the Ares system, "Did you find that in Jane's?" was an allusion to the publications (such as Jane's Defence Weekly) of the Jane's Information Group. Jane's provides open source information on defence, security, transport, public safety and law enforcement in the form of books, periodicals, electronic services, consultancy and computer simulators.

    • Gibbs: "Le Froggie" is more careful than Gotti.

      John Gotti is a famous NYC mob boss, known as "The Dapper Don." The actor portraying La Grenouille, or "the Frog," is Armand Assante, who portrayed Gotti in the 1996 TV movie of the same name.

    • Regina Smidt is presumably the Teutonic woman from Tony's surveillance song in the episode, "Driven."

    • In the plane with the arms dealer Gibbs asks Tony about a clue on his crossword puzzle. Tony replies with St. Elsewhere, a drama about doctors working in a hospital starring Mark Harmon, amongst others.

    • Tony: You're lucky she doesn't have her slingshot.

      Tony makes this comment after Ziva lays into the Israeli traitor, whose codename is "Goliath." His comment references the fact that the Biblical character Goliath was killed by a teen-aged boy wielding a slingshot. Incidentally, the boy was also an Israeli named "David".

    • Ziva: Who is Capt. Jack Sparrow?

      Tony and Ziva make a reference to the movie trilogy Pirates of the Caribbean.

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