Season 2 Episode 19

Conspiracy Theory

Aired Tuesday 8:00 PM Apr 12, 2005 on CBS
out of 10
User Rating
271 votes

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Episode Summary

The team investigates a suicide case, believing that the main reason of her death is a nervous breakdown, but Ducky believes that she was actually murdered. FBI Special Agent Fornell helps them in the investigation. The traces lead them to revelation that she was involved in a love triangle.moreless

Who was the Episode MVP ?

  • Enjoyable episode despite some flaws

    Typically good NCIS episode due to the humor and rapport of the characters including Fornell. Noteworthy are Tony's threatening to reveal the Spring-break wet T-shirt picture of Kate, and Abby calling Gibbs "my silver-haired fox."

    Some critical observations:

    (1) NCIS, the government agency, seems to waste a lot of time and money in that it can devote all its resources to a single unlikely case. Here a delusional petty officer, whose fiancée had died in Iraq, develops a sick mental state which caused her to be hospitalized, then is an out-patient, and then claims monsters are breaking into her home (same delusion as in hospital), but there is no sign of a break-in, so she is being returned to the military hospital -- but know-it-all Gibbs still treats it as a major criminal case!

    (2) Gibbs (and Ducky) berates and insults the woman's psych doctor at every turn no matter what he does. It initially looks like the woman committed suicide at the hospital. It isn't enough that a corpsman is always on duty, checking on her regularly in a ward of only 7 patients, and she has no history of being a suicide risk. But Gibbs and Ducky assert she should have been on a 24-hour suicide watch. Turns out it was murder, not suicide! So much for Gibbs and Ducky's rant!

    (3) Only the woman and her CO knew where the kickback money was stored: in the CO's gym locker. So when she is admitted to a psych ward for a month and he refuses to return the woman's phone calls, don't you think he would change the hiding place of the loot? No!moreless
  • Paranoid or not?

    A young marine woman thinks there are voices and monsters after her and noone looks to take him seriously but Gibbs does and he is right as she is killed soon after.

    So it is a chase after a murderer who managed to get into the ward, kill her and make it look accident.. but to do that, they had to be powerful and know much.. so.. it is even more shocking when the truth comes out.. out of all of those possible suspects.. I, at least, was not considering them.. And to make this episode even more dynamic, the whole Kate vs Tony thing.. It was quite interesting to see Kate in that kind of situation and have to do everything Tony said.moreless
  • Excellent episode.

    Witten sets off alarms from the first – Jessica freaks the moment she sees him and very interesting that the first thing he does is switch off the radio. Jessica swears someone broke into her house then she gets murdered? That tends to make you believe she wasn't just imagining things. Listening to the radio's programmed phrases – those were freaky, imagine waking up and hearing those in the middle of the night – who wouldn't have a breakdown?

    Good cop, scary cop – Love Gibbs and Fornell together, they have great chemistry and it's such fun to listen to their give and take.

    McGee does very well with Witten, he doesn't back down.

    Love the actress that plays Catherine, she often plays the psycho and she does it so well.moreless
  • This episode was pure comedy gold!

    Another very interesting episode of NCIS, this one starts off very, very weird. It shows a woman who is hearing voices, which NCIS later figues out is from a speaker placed in her room.

    The case was not overly interesting, but it was still an interesting one for me to watch, although, the episode was extremely brilliant because of the battle between Kate and Tony, when Kate reveals Tony's old nickname, and Tony threatens to show everyone a picture of Kate on Spring Break.

    The episode was ridiculously great because it was so funny. If you enjoy the laughs, this is the episode for you, and I highly recommend it. The ending is sensational, as the climax to the battle between Kate and Tony escalates to a new level!

    A great episode! Keep up the great work, NCIS!moreless
  • A Petty Officer Commits Suicide, The Team Believes It's Because Of A Nervous Breakdown But Ducky Says She Was Murdered. Tony & Kate Blackmail Each Other Throughout The Episode With Hilarious Consequences.moreless

    A Woman Commits Suicide And The Team Think It's Because Of A Nervous Breakdown But Ducky Points Them To Murder.

    Gibbs & The Team Investigate Her Death With The Help Of FBI Agent Fornell. The Investigation Reveals She Was Involved In A Love Triangle With Her C.O. Who Is Being Investigated After Taking Kickbacks From Navy Contractors.

    As For Kate & Tony, The Blackmail Begins When Tony Saw A Picture Of Kate In A Wet T-Shirt Competition, He Was Going To Keep Quiet About It But Kate Called Him By His College Nickname. Kate Gets Abby To Make A Picture Of Tony.

    In The End, They Decide To Delete Both Of The Pictures But Accidentally Sends The Pics To Gibbs.

    This Is One Of The Best Episodes Of 'NCIS' Ever!moreless
Sasha Alexander

Sasha Alexander

Special Agent Kate Todd

Mark Harmon

Mark Harmon

Special Agent Leroy Jethro Gibbs

Michael Weatherly

Michael Weatherly

Special Agent Tony DiNozzo

Pauley Perrette

Pauley Perrette

Forensics Specialist Abby Sciuto

Sean Murray (I)

Sean Murray (I)

Special Agent Tim McGee

David McCallum

David McCallum

Chief M.E. Ducky Mallard

Kevin Quigley

Kevin Quigley

William the Truthteller

Guest Star

Jonathan Redford

Jonathan Redford

Corpsman Timothy Morgan

Guest Star

Jennifer Dundas

Jennifer Dundas

Lynn Simons

Guest Star

Joe Spano

Joe Spano

Senior FBI Agent T.C. Fornell

Recurring Role

Brian Dietzen

Brian Dietzen

Asst. M.E. Jimmy Palmer

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (3)

    • GOOF: Abby claims that the 15 mg of Trazodone the victim was given would have knocked her out. However the standard starting dosage of Trazodone (an SSRI anti-depressant) is 50 mg which may make you drowsy, but wouldn't necessarily knock you out; 150 mg might.

    • GOOF: In this episode, the murdered officer was under the treatment of a psychologist, who worked in and ran a ward of a mental facility, and handled her medication. A psychologist can't actually dispense medicine -- the actual term is psychiatrist.

    • GOOF: Kate, Tony and McGee all knew that Fornell's death was faked, but also know that he's "Dead" and shouldn't be inside of NCIS. RE: In regards to them thinking Fornell was dead: If I remember correctly they said, "I thought you were dead." in a tone with indicated, "Why are you here, what if someone sees you?" They knew he was not dead and would have acted much more surprised if that had not been the case.

  • QUOTES (36)

    • Captain Vetter: I didn't kill Jessica. I loved her, for God's sake.
      Fornell: He loved her, Gibbs. I guess that's it then. We've got to let him go.
      Gibbs: Sure. After 80 or 90 years in Leavenworth.

    • Fornell: How can you drink that stuff?
      Gibbs: Easy, it has alcohol in it.

    • Gibbs: You told me Petty Officer Smith was like a daughter to you?
      Vetter: What's that got to do with this?
      Gibbs: Considering you're sleeping with her, a lot.

    • Tony: I take it you knew her well?
      Catherine Reynolds: We spent a month together here. It's about as good a chick-bonding experience as any.
      (Catherine hugs Tony)
      Tony: It must be difficult.
      Catherine Reynolds: It's hard.
      Tony: I know.
      (Catherine grins and looks up at Tony)
      Catherine Reynolds: Really, really hard, Agent Tony.

    • Gibbs: Why? (Looks at blow up doll dressed in Abby's clothes)
      Abby: Well I was bored and I thought she needed a little personality.

    • Catherine: Are you a virgin?
      McGee: No.
      Catherine: Are you sure?

    • Abby: It's complicated.
      Gibbs: You don't know do you?
      Abby: Not a clue.

    • Tony: It's a well known fact, Mr. McGee, that women tell each other everything.
      Kate: That would explain why none of my friends would go out with you.
      Tony: I'm sorry... (finger to ear) Say something?!
      Kate: Nothing.

    • Abby: But, still there is a problem.
      Gibbs: How'd they hang her afterwards?
      Abby: Correct again my silver haired fox... I mean Special agent Gibbs.

    • Gibbs: You oughta try building a boat with hand tools after a couple shots of Jack.

    • Gibbs: Great work Abby (kisses finger) Feel better?
      Abby: Much.

    • Tony: Why didn't you tell him I had that idea?
      McGee: Tony, a wise man once told me... there is no "I" in team.

    • Tony: Kate, cuff this whack job.

    • Catherine: Don't touch me!
      Tony: You're not my type, lady.

    • Fornell: You know what might help me believe him, Gibbs?
      Gibbs: If he started crying?

    • Kate: How old, Abby?
      Abby: Well... she's old enough to turn Tony down. (pets him) Says she only goes out with guys in their 20s.
      Kate: Ooo, poor baby.
      Tony: She wasn't my type anyway.
      Kate: Well, that's a good thing. Cause I think it's time the sex machine hung his spurs up.
      Tony: (stands) How do you know about that?
      Kate: Your college nickname? Let's just say that dating your frat brother had it's advantages.

    • Kate: I'm very sorry for the sex machine crack Tony. It was insensitive and rude. I swear it won't happen again.
      Tony: Whatever.
      Kate: Damn it, what are you going to do with it, DiNozzo?
      Tony: I haven't decided yet. Thought it might make a nice poster.
      McGee: What would?
      Kate: I am warning you. It will be war, hell on earth.
      (Tony looks at Kate)
      McGee: What are you guys talking about?
      Tony/Kate: None of your business, Probie/McGee.

    • Gibbs: My first two marriages were based on appearances.

    • Tony: Thought you were dead, Fornell.
      Fornell: I got better.
      Tony: Does Gibbs know you're sitting at his desk?

    • Tony: Lot of overachievers and perfectionists lose it. My uncle ran a Fortune 500 company until they found him digging up holes in a golf course looking for mole people ... You're a perfectionist, aren't you Kate?

    • Doctor: I have a degree in clinical psychology. Do you have any expertise in the area, Agent Gibbs?
      Gibbs: No. No I do not. Just a BS meter.

    • Kate: Isn't he supposed to be dead?
      Tony: Got better.
      Kate: Does Gibbs know he's sitting at his desk?
      Tony: Nope.
      Kate: Oh, this is gonna be...
      Tony: Great!

    • Gibbs: Make sure he didn't do any of the virus Goatrope crap to my... my thing.
      McGee: Goatrope?
      Tony: Marine term. Probie.
      Kate: Means halfway between FUBAR and SNAFU.
      McGee: Ok... What's FUBAR?
      Tony/Kate: You are.

    • Gibbs: Why don't I believe that?
      Fornell: I'd say mostly because you're a bastard.

    • Kate: (about dummy on the bed) Look familiar, sex machine?
      Tony: Ha.. Ha...Now that you mention it....(pulls out PDA) No, it's a different style shirt. See?
      Kate: I'm begging you. Don't.
      Tony: You gonna be nice?
      Kate: (Fakely) Yes...

    • Tony: (doing situps) 13...15...17...19...
      Kate: Did you lose something down there, DiNozzo?
      Tony: 99...100... Just doing my morning exercise.
      Kate: Right. So how old's this one?
      Tony: Why does it always have to be about a woman Kate?
      Kate: Uh...cause we're talking about you.
      McGee: Got your favorite here. Bacon, sausage, cheese, breakfast burrito.
      Tony: (Sniffs). I'll pass. Too much fat.
      McGee: Must be really young.
      Abby: Oh, she is.
      Tony: I don't think they need to know about this, Abbs.
      Abby: She's um....5' 10", blonde hair, long legs, and gianormous headlights.
      Tony: (looks at her) The last part was really necessary?
      Abby: That's what you called them.

    • Tony: (types on his keyboard) Kate, I'd check your e-mail before we go. It's kinda important.
      Kate: (opens email, sees the picture of her in the wet t-shirt contest) Where did you get this?
      Tony: Wet t-shirt wall of fame. Spring break '94. Saw it while I was in Panama City last month.
      Kate: Oh my god.
      Tony: I was going to keep it to myself then you decided to tell everyone my pledge name.
      Kate: You wouldn't dare.
      Tony: Ohh...
      Kate: Tony... Tony come on... we can work this out.

    • Gibbs: Kate, you're with me.
      Tony: Uh... boss, what about me?
      Catherine: Conflict in the workplace?
      Tony: You have no idea.
      Catherine: I have a theory... that most of it results from unresolved sexual issues.
      Tony: Really?
      Catherine: Certainly has been the case for me (grabs his ass). I could use a drink how about you?
      Intern: Mrs. Reynolds, did you get the shirt out of the laundry room? You know, the doctor's warned you about this kind of behavior.
      Catherine: Yeah, well, the doctor doesn't have an ass like this one.

    • McGee: Tonight? (Gibbs looks) I'll get right on it... What about doctor/patient confidentiality?
      Tony: Doesn't exist in the military anymore, Probie. And sadly for some, it desn't exist between NCIS teammates, either.
      Kate: You're wasting your time. Doesn't bother me anymore.
      Tony: Probie, wanna see something hot?
      McGee: Sure.
      Kate: (grabs PDA) What's it gonna cost me?
      Tony: I don't know. You still have that Catholic schoolgirl uniform?

    • Tony: She didn't look like she was faking to me.
      Kate: Something tells me you say that a lot-
      Tony: Kate, when they pour cold water over your chest, doesn't that make you sorta... (shakes a little)
      Gibbs: Hey, DiNozzo!!! You do that again, I will put my boot so far up your ass...

    • Gibbs: Comfortable?
      Fornell: Not really. No lumbar support. And you should get a password to protect your computer.
      Gibbs: (pulls gun and puts it in drawer) That's what this is for.....What do you want Tobias?
      Fornell: I'm hurt. Can't an old friend just stop by to say hi?
      Gibbs: Well, you're old. I'll give you that.

    • Kate: There's no way he did it. Look at his reaction.
      Tony: Maybe he's just a good actor.
      Kate: Nobody's that good.
      Tony: (reaches inside jacket) I've been thinking Kate....about the photo. I'm sorry. I mean, you know I'd never give it out, right?! In fact, I'm going to delete it right now.
      Kate: Really?
      Tony: Uh-huh.
      Kate: Thank you Tony. That would be a huge relief.
      (Tony flashes it as he puts it back in his pocket)
      Kate: What are you doing?
      Tony: Acting, Kate. It's not that hard.

    • Gibbs: McGee....
      McGee: I think they may be friends.
      Gibbs: Why does this matter?
      McGee: Well, she may have confided in them. Told them something that she didn't tell anybody else.
      Gibbs: (taps shoulder) Good thinking, McGee.
      Tony: I'm the one who came up....
      Gibbs: Tony... go babysit our corpsman in interrogation.

    • Gibbs: You don't know, do you?!
      Abby: Not a clue.
      Gibbs: Call me when you find something Abbs. (phone rings) Yeah, Gibbs.
      Abby: Found something... (holding up finger) See this?
      Gibby: Yes.
      Abby: I cut myself today installing a graphics card in my computer.
      Gibbs: Okay, you want me to kiss it or something?
      Abby: That would be really nice, but not my point.

    • Catherine: (Opening door and seeing McGee) Bummer. I thought it was the cute one.

    • McGee: So what's the plan? Good cop/bad cop?
      Todd: More like bad cop/scary cop, McGee.
      McGee: Which one is which?
      Todd: You'll have to ask their ex-wives to find out.

  • NOTES (1)

    • Original International Airdates:
      Croatia: January 05, 2006 on NOVA TV
      France: November 25, 2005 on M6
      Germany: January 26, 2006 on SAT.1
      Sweden: July 17, 2005 on TV3
      Denmark: April 19, 2005 on TV3


    • Tony: I thought you were dead, Fornell.
      Fornell: I got better.

      This could be an allusion to Monty Python and the Holy Grail. When asked why he was no longer still a newt, the character responded in the same manner, I got better.

    • When McGee is listing the things the three women had in common, he manages to say "knitting, crossword puzzles, the TV show Quan--" before Gibbs interrupts him. It's pretty easy to assume he was about to say Quantum Leap, another Bellisario program.

    • Kate: Means halfway between FUBAR and SNAFU.

      FUBAR stands for "F***** Up Beyond All Recognition" and SNAFU stands for "Situation Normal, All F***** Up."