Season 3 Episode 8

Under Covers

Aired Tuesday 8:00 PM Nov 08, 2005 on CBS
out of 10
User Rating
588 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

When bodies of two hired assassins are delivered to the NCIS team, Ziva and Tony go undercover assuming the victim's identities in order to find the person who hired the assassins for their mission. While working on the case, Ziva ad Tony spend some quality time in a luxury hotel and the attraction between them arises. Gibbs discovers that his team is not the only one working on the case.moreless

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  • At first I wasn't sure I wanted to watch this episode with my Mom, but I did anyway. I thought her reaction would be a gasp and a "Oh my!" But instead it was, "Now why is she in my dream?"moreless

    I watched this episode by myself the first time, but soon enough on mine and my Mom's marathons of NCIS (we're watching in order from season 1), this episode was bound to come sometime. I was hesitant to show her this episode at first. I was going to skip over it but I decided not to. I didn't think she would like all the "special" scenes (if you know what I mean).... I, however, was wrong. During the flashback with Gibbs and the director my Mom said, "Now why is she in my dream?" And during the scenes with Ziva and Tony she said, "I would like to do that!" We ended up laughing throughout the whole episode and we both loved it! It was hilarious, and scary. The perfect combination!moreless
  • Hot Episode.

    I loved this episode. It showed us how it would be if Tony and Ziva hooked up; It would hot and passionate, but in the end someone (most likely Tony) would walk away scarred and damaged. It was a nice surprise when the NCIS team busted in on the FBI while Ziva and Tony pretended to be having sex. When Ducky pulled the heart chip out and we found out that it had their files on it, I was flabergasted. How in the world did she get it in there without damaging her eye. We never find out who killed them. I love when Ziva and the rest of the gang come running in planning to save Tony, but instead they see that he is beating the dude up with his feet; hilarious. I love what he says,"I want a divorce."moreless
  • Ziva and Tony undercover

    Ok.. the way the episode started.. it was cleverly done and I was thinking like what is going on until it was explained that they were undercover.

    I loved the episode. I mean. There was a lot of action, the whole mystery of playing two people they know very little and do the people hiring them or the one they have to kill figure it out and can the manage to keep their cover.. Plus those FBI agents on the other house. That scene, coming trough the door.. It was brilliant. I was not expecting that.

    And then ofcourse the tension between Tony and Ziva and some great moments. And then.. they being captured and Gibbs trying to save them before it is too late. Great action, great dynamics, exciting.moreless
  • The anticipated cliché sex episode between Ziva and Tony.

    With the intro of Ziva and the obvious sexual chemistry, I just knew there would be an episode like this, it was inevitable, but I hoped out of respect for Kate that they would hold off for a while. It's such a cliché and they didn't do it with Kate, and it's really not necessary. However, it is well done and very funny.

    Gibbs and Fornell have another one of those 'public fighting/private conspiracy' things.

    "You don't know him like I do." How's that for a bizarre comment by Chip re Tony? Getting a definite hate vibe.

    Poor Tony! He does real good though. So much so that I'm ashamed to say I was surprised.

    Despite the cliché, it is actually a very good episode.moreless
  • Wow! Terrific episode!

    Another very interesting episode of NCIS, and the fourth consecutive episode that I absolutely loved. This episode was extremely different to anything ever attempted before, and that made it rather special and amazing. My only regret is that it is not Kate in there with Tony.

    The episode was also extremely hilarious, with funny quotes dotted all over the episode, mainly between Agents DiNozzo and David, but also elsewhere.

    I had sort of worked out the ending as a possible conclusion, which was the only down side for me, but really, this episode is unmissable, and I recommend this one extremely highly.

    A terrific episode! Keep up the amazing work!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

David McCallum

David McCallum

Chief M.E. Ducky Mallard

Michael Bellisario

Michael Bellisario

Charles 'Chip' Sterling

Guest Star

Eric Steinberg

Eric Steinberg

Marcos Siazon

Guest Star

Phillip Rhys

Phillip Rhys


Guest Star

Lauren Holly

Lauren Holly

NCIS Director Jenny Shepard

Recurring Role

Brian Dietzen

Brian Dietzen

Asst. M.E. Jimmy Palmer

Recurring Role

Joe Spano

Joe Spano

Senior FBI Agent T.C. Fornell

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (10)

    • GOOF: At 26:00, Abby and Chip look at Mrs. Ranier's blood test and realize she was pregnant. However, Ducky had already finished the autopsy and he should have seen that she was.

    • GOOF: Tony knocks out the assassin with his chair and the assassin falls to the front of the bed. In the next scene, when the rest of the team breaks into the room, the assassin is between the two beds. Tony is tied to the chair and would not have been able to move him there.

    • TRIVIA: We see Jethro holding a pristine canister that reads: "Jethro, For Good Luck Love, Shannon and Kelly." We see what appears to be a bullet next to "Love." While in episode 1x15 "Enigma," we see the same, yet very battered canister reading: "(Smudge)ro For Good Luck Your Loving" with the bullet after "Loving" and there is no mention of names on this one. Best guess is that the word "Wife" is being blocked by the bullet after "Loving."

    • TRIVIA: This is the first mention of Shannon and Kelly, although the relationship with Gibbs is not mentioned until season 3 finale.

    • GOOF: In the beginning scene where Tony and Ziva are in the hotel room (before intro) Ziva is leading Tony backwards towards the bed, and her hair is in front of her shoulders, except a small strand. The next shot when Ziva is still leading Tony back and all her hair is behind her shoulders.

    • GOOF: When Ducky unzips the body bag off of the female assassin her eyelids flutter.

    • GOOF: When Director Shepard, Gibbs and Fornell are in MTAC, Director Shepherd twists her headset microphone down to a 90 degree angle. She has just reached 90 degrees when the camera angle changes and you see her twisting the microphone downwards again.

    • GOOF: Near the end of the episode when Tony almost falls and he is helped to his feet again, McGee leaves walking in front of Chip. The next shot you see McGee moving behind Chip.

    • GOOF: Near the end of the episode, when the villain, Marcos Siesan, is walking Ziva back to her hotel room supposedly to get the disk, the camera flashes to him from the front, and then multiple times looking over his shoulder at her. In one of the takes looking over his shoulder at her, he has his coat on while in all the others his coat is off. Since he's using his coat to hide his weapon, it is correct to show the coat as off.

    • TRIVIA: Near the end of the episode, Ducky is dressed in formal dinner suit with medals. The medals are on his left breast which means that he earned them, over his right breast would mean that they were his Father's. The medals shown are British and primarily WW2 and include The Atlantic Star, The Africa Star, and the 1939-1945 War Medal however, there is also a WW1 Victory Medal on the second row. This would make Ducky not just in his late 70s but much older!

  • QUOTES (32)

    • Jenny: My Director side is telling me to flood that hotel with security, and notify the FBI of a possible terrorist attack. My agent side- if I do that, we lose the chance to take down an enemy cell operating inside the capitol. They'll scatter. Of course, you'd stay the course, trust your people to get the job done.
      Gibbs: You telling me what I'd do?
      Jenny: Asking.
      Gibbs: If I was Director, I'd give my people another twenty-four. They can't get the job done, I'd notify the FBI.
      Jenny: You'd really do that?
      Gibbs: Nah, but that's why I'll never be Director.

    • Gibbs: You're not the only one around here who knows how to play politics.
      Jen: (laughing) You're not serious. Your idea of politics usually involves some form of physical violence.
      Gibbs: Well, you know what they say, Jen - you can't make an omelette unless you break a few eggs.

    • (Ducky's examining Tony)
      Ducky: There doesn't seem to be any permanent damage. How many times did he hit you?
      Tony: I wasn't counting.
      Ziva: 7 times.
      Tony: She was of course.
      Ziva: It was hard not to.

    • Ziva: Good plan... except for one minor drawback.
      Tony: What?
      Ziva: When I leave, they'll most likely put a bullet through your head.
      Tony: Oh. Well, I didn't say it was a perfect plan.

    • Ziva: There is a big chance that this is a set-up, Tony.
      Tony: Are you scared?
      Ziva: No... excited.

    • (About the pregnancy of Ziva's undercover character)
      Tony: Maybe she didn't know.
      Ziva: Oh, she knew.
      Tony: Then why do this job risking to lose the baby?
      Ziva: Maybe she needed the money.
      Tony: Yeah, kids are expensive...
      Ziva: And bullets are cheap.

    • (Sees Ziva cleaning her gun)
      Tony: You haven't fired your weapon so it's already clean.
      Ziva: It calms my mind, forces me to stay focused on the job in my hand.
      Tony: The term is job at hand.
      Ziva: Same difference... Something wrong?
      Tony: Just trying to picture you pregnant.
      Ziva: Don't!
      Tony: I have to, I'm gonna be a father!

    • Jenny: He made contact?!
      Gibbs: Yeah...
      Jenny: Did you trace the call?
      Gibbs: Gee... why didn't I think of that?

    • Tony: (Ziva pours water over his head to wake him up) I'm in position, Boss!

    • McGee: You're up?
      Ziva: Since 0500. He snores.

    • Ziva: Think they bought it?
      Tony: I did.
      Ziva: That's fairly obvious.
      Tony: For your information, that's my knee.
      Ziva: Whatever. You can get off me now.
      Tony: It's only been ten minutes. I have a reputation to protect.
      Ziva: We not even sure if we're under surveillance yet Tony.
      Tony: You can't be too careful when you're under cover. Let's give it another forty minutes just to be realistic!

    • Abby: (about Tony) He always gives new people grief. He learned that from Gibbs.

    • (Tony's robe isn't covering everything)
      Gibbs: Comfortable Dinozzo?
      Tony: Well yeah. I'm working on it.
      Jenny: We're looking at you Agent Dinozzo. All of you.

    • Tony: (to Ziva) Oh wow! And to think, my mother thought I was too good for you!

    • Gibbs: Hey Abbs, what have you got?
      Abby: I have a whoopee and I have a but.
      Gibbs: Abby!
      Abby: Whoopee, I got a photo of the man that Tony and Ziva are going to assassinate...
      Gibbs: (Impatiently) But?
      Abby: But, I have no idea which of these 32 photos is him.

    • (Gibbs, Ducky and Director Shepard are discussing two corpses in autopsy)
      Gibbs: Tony and Ziva have taken their room reservations at the Berkeley. They're there now, pretending to be these two. They're working blind, Duck.
      Director Shepard: We're counting on you to fill them in on some of the more personal details of our couple.
      Ducky: Though it may be common knowledge that I talk to my patients, unfortunately to date, none of them have ever answered me back.
      Gibbs: Listen harder.

    • Tony: We should take you to see the doctor, Sweet Cheeks.
      Ziva: Why?
      Tony: Because you snore like a drunken sailor with emphysema.
      Ziva: Look who's calling the pot black.
      Tony: Kettle. The pot is calling the kettle black.

    • Ziva: I'd really like some music. Something with a little... beat. Dear.
      Tony: What do we got?
      Ziva: Sneaky people.

    • (Tony and Ziva are at dinner. They are in contact with the rest of the team through earwigs)
      Ziva: This is nice, isn't it?
      Tony: Yeah. (laughs) Quiet little dinner, just the six of us!

    • Tony: What do you think?
      Ziva: Not bad, I suppose.
      Tony: Not bad, she says as she walks in from the outdoor patio past the fax machine and the mini-bar. Complimentary basket of fruit! This is a perfect way to spend a weekend! Come on, big-screen TV! (continues)

    • Tony: All right... (Tony starts to stand up) Good night, Boss. (Tony starts to fall over. Abby and Ziva help steady him) All right... I'm good.. .

    • Ducky: I suggest a couple of aspirin.
      (Ducky touches a cut above Tony's eye)
      Tony: (In a high pitched squeal) Oww..
      Ducky: Yes, and perhaps some scotch...
      (Gibbs walks up)
      Gibbs: I thought doctors weren't suppose to prescribe alcohol any more, Duck?
      Ducky: Well it always seems to work for you.

    • Ziva: And I am driving you home. (Holds up Tony's keys)
      Tony: Probie?!
      McGee: Uh, Ziva. Actually I should probably drive him home tonight.
      Ziva: Why is that?
      Abby: Maybe he wants to live?

    • Chip: Why don't you like Agent David?
      Abby: Why do you think that I don't like her?
      (Chip holds up a picture of Ziva that has clown drawings on her face; hair, nose, lips and eyebrows)
      Abby: Oh. That.

    • (To Gibbs and the rest of the team)
      Tony: I want a divorce.

    • (Gibbs and Fornell discuss how to solve the case without the directors getting into a territory fight)
      Fornell: The directors get to save face, and we...
      Gibbs:...get the job done.
      Fornell: And people say we're bastards?
      Gibbs: Only because they know us.

    • Spivey: Trust me, I know when someone's acting when they're having sex.
      Maya: It's true...I've met his wife.

    • (Ziva walks into the room as Tony is talking to Maya pretending to be the maid.)
      Ziva: Tony, I'm pregnant.

    • (Ziva tells Tony she's pregnant to get the FBI girl away)
      Ziva: She wasn't your type anyway.
      Tony: Hot and in a maid's outfit? They don't get any more my type.

    • Tony: Sweetheart? You know what I could really use right now?
      Ziva: Some deodorant?

    • (Ziva knees Tony in the groin while straddling him on the bed)
      Tony: What was that for?
      Ziva: Because that was definitely not your knee.

    • Tony: See anyone you know, Sweet Cheeks?
      Ziva: Not yet. But the night's just getting started, my little Hairy Butt.

  • NOTES (3)

    • This episode first aired November 8, 2005, two days before the Marine Corps birthday, November 10, hence the note at the end of the episode: "Semper Fi To Marines Everywhere."

    • Original International Airdates:
      Denmark: November 29, 2005 on TV3
      Australia: April 26, 2006 on Channel 10
      Sweden: May 28, 2006 on TV3
      Germany: August 20, 2006 on SAT 1
      France: September 29, 2006 on M6
      Croatia: November 6, 2006 on NOVA TV
      Italy: November 19, 2006 on RAI 2
      South Africa: June 9, 2007 on SABC2
      Finland: November 17, 2007 on Nelonen
      Slovakia: April 29, 2009 on Markiza

    • This episode is also known under the title Keeping Up With the Joneses.


    • The United States Marine Corps Birthday Ball is an annual event that celebrates that on November 10th, 1775 the Second Continental Congress resolved to raise two battalions of Continental Marines marking the birth of the United States Marine Corps. The first "formal" Birthday Ball took place on Philadelphia in 1925.

    • The dead assassins, Sophie and Jean-Paul Ranier, have property in Gilead, Maine. Episode writer Lee David Zlotoff also wrote and directed the film The Spitfire Grill, which is set in Gilead, Maine.

    • Episode Title: "Under Covers"
      A reference to a 1923 silent B&W movie starring Cliff Bowes & Virginia Vance.