Season 1 Episode 3


Aired Tuesday 8:00 PM Oct 07, 2003 on CBS
out of 10
User Rating
349 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

When a Navy commander's body washes up on shore along with the bodies of two drug runners, Gibbs refuses to believe that the sailor who was killed was dirty.

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  • The beginning of my annoyance of Kate.

    So it is as early as here that Kate really starts to bother me. Besides the fact that they've made her little miss perfect, she knows it too. She jabs at Tony every single chance she gets, and as a viewer we all know he'd NEVER physically sexually harass anyone but she accuses him of doing so - on top of all the other insults. She constantly questions his abilities, mentally and physically, and puts him down. But he says one word and she gives him these condescending death stares.

    ^ This would be funny if it was mutual but every time she does it Tony actually looks bothered. Which I think is brilliant acting on his part. I think everyone constantly thinking so little of Tony gets pretty old and annoying.

    And there is absolutely no chemistry between Tony and Kate, I can't even see them as friends because she obviously thinks she's better than Tony. Even at this job that she's had for probably a few weeks.

    I like this episode, it covers multiple bases, we get to learn a bit more about people, see Fornell again (shame they couldn't have predicted the chemistry between Fornell and Jethro in the pilot and not made them act like strangers there). The reporter was over the top and annoying though.

    I felt somewhat sorry for the detective at the start who Ducky was grilling. I think he deserved to be told off but being put down, degraded and just outright insulted was a bit rude.moreless
  • The NCIS team track a terrorist

    The season has started of ok but I think it can still do better.The episode went from a drug war to chasing a terrorist and with the help of Fornell they look to stop him.The terrorist plans on knocking out the national power grid using C4 but when they identify him Gibbs,Tony and Kate was able to stop him and with one more button to go the terrorist would have succeeded.One of the things that shocked me in the episode is how Gibbs was able to climb over that fence on the basketball court although it is Gibbs.moreless
  • Not as great as the first two.

    I personally found this episode to be quite weaker than the first two episodes of the show. I really loved the scenes at the beginning, where the boat rolls on shore, and crashes a party that happened to be occuring on that beach.

    I thought the case got a little bit boring at times, and I really wasn't drawn in by the episode.

    I enjoyed seeing the deep connection that exists between Gibbs and Abby, and seeing them use sign language.

    Overall, I have to say that this episode was a step in the backwards direction, but I still enjoyed watching it, and the show is still incredible!moreless
  • Nothing is as it first appears

    So.. this time it looks like drug deal gone bad but this episodes shows that never go with the first and easy choice: there is more than you can reach at the first sight.

    This episode did not had so much char moments what I really enjoyed in previous episodes but the case was much more multilayered this time and I enjoyed having those other agencies around: some playing nice, some not so nice.

    And the twist on the story.. That was.. unexpected and the end scene of the case. That was intense.. action, shooting and they being lucky.. Great dynamics.moreless
  • A drug story with a twist.

    Liked Ducky grilling the incompetent cop, surprised Gibbs didn't shred him, I would have. Good of Gibbs to get the reporter to clean up her story with the truth.

    There's two things about this episode that I noticed – two things that have disappeared in later seasons: the use of the major crimes truck and Gibbs/Abby signing.

    It's quite funny how Gibbs plays the criminals – threatening with Gitmo – then playing them against each other.

    There's been serious chemistry between Kate and Gibbs even if it's understated – the fact that Kate is sketching Gibbs from memory says something.

    Fornell's back which is always fun – he and Gibbs simultaneously infuriate and amuse each other which eventually leads to them becoming sort-of friends. Morrow plays by the same rule book as Gibbs – there's nothing like a little blackmail.

    Second appearance of Gibbs' mysterious redhead.

    Nice reappearance of Fornell even if the drug dealer storyline was a little tired, though the focus was off enough not to make it overly predictable.moreless
Mark Harmon

Mark Harmon

Special Agent Leroy Jethro Gibbs

Sasha Alexander

Sasha Alexander

Special Agent Kate Todd

Michael Weatherly

Michael Weatherly

Special Agent Tony DiNozzo

Pauley Perrette

Pauley Perrette

Forensics Specialist Abby Sciuto

David McCallum

David McCallum

Chief M.E. Ducky Mallard

Merle Dandridge

Merle Dandridge

Marcy Carruthers

Guest Star

Dar Dixon

Dar Dixon

Captain Tom Bradstone

Guest Star

Chris Olivero

Chris Olivero

Dave Simmons

Guest Star

Pancho Demmings

Pancho Demmings

Asst. M.E. Gerald Jackson

Recurring Role

Joe Spano

Joe Spano

FBI Agent T.C. Fornell

Recurring Role

Alan Dale

Alan Dale

NCIS Director Tom Morrow

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (6)

    • GOOF: When the map of the blackout pops up on screen it shows the entire shore of Lake Superior as being affected. This was not the case as the no blackouts occurred along the north shores of Lake Superior.

    • TRIVIA: We learn the Abby knows sign language because her parents were deaf. However, it is not revealed why Gibbs knows sign language.

    • GOOF: Near the end of the episode, when Kate is showing the areas affected by the August 2003 blackout, The U.S. is in green and Canada is in grey. However, the state of Maine and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan are the wrong color. They should be green but they are grey.

    • GOOF: Kate says that by the time the power failure of August 15, 2003, reached Buchanan, NY, all the northeast and most of Canada was blacked out. The display on the screen shows clearly that nowhere near "most of Canada" was affected, in fact only the majority of Ontario was affected. Also, the blackout started on August 14th, not the 15th.

    • TRIVIA: In the elevator, Tony said something to Gibbs in sign language that was never voiced. He signed, "I see."

    • GOOF: When the reporter is filming her segment about what really happened, right as she is signing off, "This is Diane Fontaine, WXEK News," her microphone is facing so that you can see the logo "WXEK". But in the next shot, they zoom in closer on her, and the microphone shows a big "19".

  • QUOTES (32)

    • Gibbs: (seeing the terrorist had gotten six of seven numbers dialed) Lucky he wasn't phone savvy.
      Kate: Savvy enough to wire three phones to the same number.
      Gibbs: Yep. What if he'd used speed dial?

    • Tony: Are you sure? I knew a granny in Baltimore hid a kilo of H in a horse's rectum.
      Kate: No horse on the boat, Tony.

    • Tony: Well that gives you a warm fuzzy feeling doesn't it?
      Dobbs: What?
      Tony: Knowing Gibbs trusts us with a contaminated crime scene.

    • Tony: (looking at two girls sunbathing) If I only had the time.
      Gibbs: What?
      Tony: (quickly looking at his watch) Do you have the time?
      Gibbs: Going somewhere?
      Tony: Yeah, back to work.

    • Abby: Are we submitting to the Sundance film festival?
      Tony: Yeah, Best Terrorist Film Category.

    • Tony: I feel like I just kissed my sister.
      Abby: I didn't know you had a sister Tony.
      Tony: I don't. I was fantasizing.
      Abby: I need music to do that.

    • Tony: You do not have the right to remain silent. You do not have the right to an attorney. If you want an attorney, you won't get an appointment to see one. Do you understand these rights you don't have?

    • Gibbs: Dealers were found with fanny packs stuffed with wads of Franklins.
      Kate: Well, I gotta see those bills.
      Gibbs: Why?
      Kate: I did work for the Secret Service. We tend to get all hot and bothered over large sums of hundred dollar bills.
      Tony: Is that what does it for ya?
      Kate: What does it for me, Tony, is a mystery that you will never solve.

    • FBI Director: Oh hell, why not? We're all on the same team. But, Tom, if any of our colleagues hear about this I'll pull the plug and NCIS priority will follow the Sandusky Ohio Fire Department.
      Director Morrow: Understood.

    • Tony: What's that?
      Fuller: Asset forfeiture notice.
      Tony: Don't you have to find drugs first?
      Fuller: I used to worry about rules like that... then I met you guys.

    • Fuller: I'm a federal agent. I know who and what to ask.
      Gibbs: I keep forgetting you're not a dog walker.

    • Fuller: (pats dog) Can Tony sniff for drugs now?
      Tony: Tony?
      Fuller: Some coincidence, huh?
      Tony: Bet he's a real stud.
      Fuller: He's neutered.

    • (Tony tries to say something in sign language to Gibbs)
      Gibbs: You should wash your hands with soap for saying that.

    • Kate: Looks like a heard of elephants went through here.
      Gibbs: Nah, just one fat local LEO.

    • Ducky: The South Pacific has a number of different refreshments. I remember one... where was it? New Guinea or Timor... whatever the case, the natives had this delightfully refreshing drink. It wasn't until years later that I discovered it was made from a mixture of rum punch and water buffalo urine.

    • Gibbs: You get that reporter's number, or was that just talk?
      Tony: Haha. Gibbs.
      Gibbs: See if she's available for lunch.
      Tony: Love to. Can I expense it?
      Gibbs: No, but I will.
      Tony: How do you sign I shoulda known?

    • Tony: Ahh... I heard a rumor about an ecstasy ring at Lejeune.
      Gibbs: You heard a rumor?
      Kate: Oh, he's been searching for a case, any case, since I came in.
      Tony: All agents not working active cases are to attend a sexual harassment seminar at the NCIS Human Resources training center at 0930 hours today.
      Gibbs: I cannot sit through another one of those, I will shoot myself.
      Kate: You mean they actually train you guys how to harass? Hey, I'm kidding. Except for Tony.
      Tony: For the last time, Kate, I was only trying to get my seatbelt on.
      Kate: Right. Seatbelt.

    • Kate: For the 1990-96 series, Treasury introduced microprinting as a counter-measure against computer printers and copiers. Good enough to stop high school kids, but not rogue countries and a few of the world's top forgers. It's got one tiny flaw.
      Gibbs: I'll be damned.
      Tony: What?
      Kate: You'd think a man who could find heroin in a horse's ass could find this.
      Fuller: You reached into a horse's ass?
      Tony: I had a glove on. United States, what's wrong with that?
      Kate: Read it again.
      Tony: Untied States. Ah. So the forger was dyslexic.
      Kate: Not just the forger.

    • Kate: Oh, that's really smart, Tony.
      Tony: Any guy coulda done it.
      Kate: Guy? Learn to shut up when you're ahead.

    • Fornell: I see where you cowboys get your chutzpah.

    • Gibbs: Hey. Get anything from your friend?
      Kate: Yep.
      Gibbs: You disappoint me, Kate.
      Fornell: Me too, Gibbs. I thought she knew better than to trade down. Oh. Is this yours?
      Gibbs: You need to seriously rethink your definition of the word 'friend.'
      Kate: If I were in Marcy's shoes I would've done the same thing.
      Fornell: Careful, Agent Todd. You're running out of job options.

    • Marcy: Caitlin!
      Kate: Glad you could make it, Marcy. I didn't go over to the dark side.
      Marcy: Sorry. So how's it feel not wearing a suit?
      Kate: I think a bit like mom felt when she burned her bra.

    • Fuller: Your bluff worked. Trujillo wants to talk. He really believed you'd ship him off to Gitmo.
      Gibbs: The secret of a good bluff, Agent Fuller, is not to bluff.

    • Kate: Tony told me what to do.
      Gibbs: Tony doesn't tell you what to do. I do.

    • Tony: Kinda like sex but without all the work.
      Kate: Everything's like sex to you Tony.

    • Gibbs: Why do I feel like a high school principal?

    • Kate: He could be a power company doing his job (Guy opens fire at them).
      Gibbs: No, I don't think so.

    • Kate: Thanks for waiting, guys.
      Gibbs: Chain of custody, Kate. You had to stay with the boat.
      Kate: I'm not stupid, Gibbs.
      Gibbs: Never said you were.
      Kate: I didn't have to ride in the tow truck with that boat, now did I? You do this to all the newbies, or just the females?
      Tony: Do we look like sexists?
      Kate: Ask me who's buried in Grant's tomb. It's a tougher question.

    • Tony: It's when a pilot is so fixated on a target he flys right into it.
      Kate: Like you and women?

    • Tony: Gun fire.
      Kate: Good guess Tony.

    • Dobbs: You shoved a French cop off a cliff?
      Ducky: There was a lake below.
      Gibbs: Sixty feet below.

    • Dobbs: Do you think he was shot or drowned?
      Tony: Well, either way he's dead.

  • NOTES (4)


    • Kate: I think I feel like mom felt when she burned her bra.

      An allusion to the famous myth that feminists in the 60s burned their bras. Whilst some certainly threw them in the trash as a gesture of freedom from restriction, there is no proof that there were actually any big bra burning ceremonies.

    • Kate: About fifteen seconds later, the Mary Celeste came roaring out of the dark and onto the beach.
      The boat that hits the beach has nobody on it. Kate's reference to the famous case of the Mary Celeste is an allusion to the ship of the same name, which was discovered in 1872 sailing into Gibraltar, but with no sign of anyone on board, despite it having had a crew of seven and the master, his wife and young daughter when it set out. It has since passed into legend as a complete mystery, though there are many theories about what may have happened.

    • Ducky: Where did you learn crime scene procedure? Watching Kojak reruns?

      Kojak was a popular television series that aired from 1973 to 1978, starring Telly Savalas as a police lieutenant in the NYPD.

    • Local LEO references the teens on the beach playing Beach Blanket Bingo. This was a movie released in 1965 with Frankie Avalon and Annette Funicello. A gang of kids are surfing and partying on the beach and wind up fighting bikers who are intent to kidnap one of their own. The most famous of the beach movies of the sixties.

    • Kate: I didn't go over to the dark side.

      This is a Star Wars reference, as Anakin Skywalker was seduced by the dark side of the force and became Darth Vader. Later, he attempted to persuade his son Luke to join him on the dark side. Kate left the Secret Service and joined NCIS. For those of you who don't know, Star Wars is a very popular SF movie.