Over here, in Germany, we are a bit behind, so 11/16 was the latest episode that was aired.
Honestly, I'm not really happy with the storyline of DiNozzo Sr. They could have made so much from it! In the first episode (season 7) he turned up it was still fine. Although I was wondering why everyone - excluding Tony and Gibbs - was so f*** nice to DiNozzo Sr. I mean, everyone knew that Tony never had a great childhood and was suffering from being neglected by his father. It seemed as if the actors were so happy to play with Robert Wagner that they forgot about the role. However, the interaction between Tony and his Dad, between Gibbs and the Sr. and Tony and Gibbs was great in that episode. And the bottom line was - Tony doesn't need another father because he already has one - Gibbs! (final scene!) (Even the Sr. seems to be aware of it when he told Gibbs in 11/16 that he had been the better father for Tony).
Unfortunately, they had no other storyline afterwards, but decided to let the Sr. become a recurring role. So the episodes in season 8, 9, and 10 were - more or less - a retake of the first episode - with the unfortunate attempt of a happy end. But the original conception of the role had been a completely different one, so it never really worked (at least for me).
It's so sad that they missed the opportunity to write a real storyline for this character. RW could have used all his skills and experience. I don't say he doesn't but it could have been so much more, so much better! What if DiNozzo Sr. really was a criminal? A real clever one? So that it would have taken a while to catch him? It would have been a real pain for Tony, but it also would have been another opportunity to make more from the relationship between Tony and Gibbs. I mean, THEY are the main characters, aren't they?
I wonder if the writers and producers have ever noticed that the silent, simple scenes are the strongest of the show. Just think of the final scene of 9/2 (Restless). Gibbs and Tony simply sit in the car and talk. But it's one of the best scenes ever.
However, back to 11/16. The storyline of father and son was predictable. The Sr. turns up, something happens (this time to Tony) , Tony is not very happy, the Sr. says something that hurts Tony (this time that he found a new love, his soulmate, who turns out to be the best friend of Tony's Mom) , Tony forgives him because he's so good-natured that it hurts, the Sr. claims that he loves him, Tony takes what he can get, and then the Sr. disappears for a year in which he won't care for his son at all. So far - so good (or so predictable).
Disappointing that the Sr. didn't mention Ziva. He liked her, he knew Tony loved her and probably (hopefully) knew that he was suffering from losing her. So why he didn't ask? Because he didn't want to hurt him? I don't buy it because he never had problems to say something that would hurt him (see above). A bad try from the writers to make her forget? I guess so because when he said to that girl that she was more beautiful than Tony had told him it was like an deja-vu - "Tony never mentioned how beautiful you are". (DiNozzo Sr. in season 7 to Ziva)! Writers, did you really have to do this?? It's almost disgusting!
Well, how to rate this episode?
Robert Wagner great as always - storyline flat as always. 9 points for the actor minus 4 for the storyline: 5. (Sorry, Mr Wagner, it's not your bad).
A normal Ducky-Palmer-scene (yeah!) but much too short, a bit more Abby in the usual style, Gibbs and McGee being a bit more themselves than in the last episodes, the General Inspector was an interesting character - 6 points. (I've seen that much better in the last ten seasons. Usually I would give 3 points but meanwhile I appreciate every little improvement).
Overall storyline - flat as a plate but better than the last episodes - 3 points.
Tony as the character in the centre - not as good as in the last ten seasons but at least much better than in the last episodes - 7 points.
That girl ... Well ... She wasn't so awful and disturbing than in the last episodes, at least when she was just saying her lines and not trying to act. But ... I know how the other team members work but I still don't have a clue how she works. Does she get the information on a telepathic way? Does it materialize out of the air the moment she sits down on the floor? Please, teach her how to use a chair! And ... can anyone - please, please - teach her other facial impressions than "stupid horse", "dying fish", "I'm so clever although I don't have a clue what I'm doing here", and "I'm so cute although I don't know why" ?? For not annoying me completely this time - 1 point (last episodes = 0 points).
Average: 4,5 + a half point (call it good will).