Original Air Date: Feb 5, 2013
Maria – Associate Staff Writer
As far as undercover operations go, McGee came out pretty well on this one compared to Gibbs who had to dress up as a homeless guy, Ziva who dressed with rather fitting and little clothing except for the high heels, whilst Tony had to hide in the dumpster. Still, they managed to arrest the number 2 cyber-terrorist, Ajay Khan (*shakes fist at the sky* KHHHHAAAAANNNNN)
Tony goes back to NCIS, wanting the praise and adulation that we know he craves, but nothing happens. Meh, Khan is number 2, it’s not like he’s number 1. So, our NCIS team vow to go after the top cyber-terrorist, known only as MC.
First up, I’d like to introduce you to NCIS Systems Administrator, Kevin Hussein. He’s a tech guy, but he’s taking improvisation classes, although it’s probably not a good idea to joke about terrorists and bombs whilst chatting to NCIS Agents, no matter how harmless he is. I think he’s adorable. NCIS is awesome when it comes to creating kick-ass women and adorable men and I would gladly watch a 5 hour show which introduced us to all the people working there.
Anyway, Khan isn’t talking, and McAbby’s attempt to get into his computer cause it to start smoking and destroy itself. Abby uses a gel for fixing tractors to get the smell of failure out of her hair after that, but it wasn’t a complete failure. She was recording the few seconds of data before things went up in smoke and manages to find an address.
Ducky is occupied performing the autopsy of a bombmaker who was killed by the Ebola virus. The state of the body reveals that it was a weakened strain of the virus, but still lethal. Ducky also performs a psychological evaluation of Khan. Khan has very few weaknesses except for that most primitive instinct, personal survival. If they want Khan to talk, they have to make him believe his life is in danger.
Of course, the good guys have a credos about not endangering lives, so the threat is far more likely to be convincing coming from Khan’s ex-employers, who are now prisoners at Guantanamo Bay. Khan doesn’t believe Gibbs would ever have him sent there, so Gibbs is on a mission to prove otherwise.
Khan is strapped into a plane with Tony and Ziva escorting him, but he still won’t talk. The stakes are high, and a nervous Acting Director Jerome Craig agrees that they must follow through with Gibbs’ plan. Khan is drugged by Tony, and wakes up in a cell.
The reason the stakes are because Abby has realized that the Ebola was designed by the CDC as a vaccine but instead still provided a deadly dosage. She also realizes that Khan hacked into the CDC and had the deadly “vaccines” shipped as flu vaccines to the address she uncovered earlier. Unfortunately, the Ebola virus is no longer at that address and is on the move.
The poor trucker thought he was carrying flu vaccines when he actually had deadly Ebola in the back of his truck, but thankfully Gibbs and McGee are able to track it down and the Ebola is disposed of safely. The immediate threat is over, however the brains behind it is still at large. MC needs to be brought down.
Kevin Hussein is terrified of Gibbs, and not just because he’s the one who has to fix Gibbs’ phone every time he breaks it and DiNozzo’s stash of the same models ran out (awesome call back, by the way.) No, he’s scared Gibbs will fire him. Abby reassures him (with her crazy tractor lube hair-do) that Gibbs can’t do that. Gibbs then enters and tells Kevin that the Director wants to see him. Gulp!
Back with Khan, Ziva and Tony, and things are starting to go funky over there. Khan is already scared, having heard the threats of his ex-employers through the walls, but then the lights go out and the cells begin to unlock. Ziva has been called away, because they didn’t go through the proper channels, so this leaves Tony and Khan to bond.
Eventually, Tony leaves Khan. Khan watches through the small window as Tony finds a guard, but a prisoner escapes and seems to shoot the guard dead before shooting Tony in the leg. It looks like Tony is about to be given a kill shot when Ziva makes a timely appearance and shoots the prisoner. Unfortunately, she informs Khan there’s an angry mob after her so their best chance is inside Khan’s cell.
Once inside, Tony is left to tend to his bleeding leg whilst Ziva pulls the mattress against the cell door and tries to hold it against the angry mob. The voices yell that they only want Khan, and not the Agents. Ziva tells Tony to take the deal, but Khan is terrified. He says they can’t, they need him, but Ziva points out he hasn’t been useful so far.
Tony gives Khan his radio where McGee will know if Khan is bluffing him about MC’s IP address. With the noise level outside increasing, Khan gives in and gives McGee the correct IP address. Gibbs calls an end to the charade. They were never in Guantanamo. They’re in Andrews Air Force Base, squibs were used instead of bullets, Kevin helped provide the atmosphere, and now they have what they need to track MC.
Anybody who read my CSI:NY recap of Civilized Lies knows how I feel about the “good guys” conning criminals. I don’t think it should be done lightly. Yet NCIS handled it better, in my opinion. They acknowledged how “old school” it was, they set up the threat better, and I even think they taught Khan a lesson. Director Craig acknowledged there would be repercussions, and he also realized that he may not have what it takes to do the job, yet, but he’s learning.
I’m sure everybody saw the “reveal” coming, that they had set Khan up, but I believe it was necessary. I may not like it, but Khan wouldn’t talk unless he believed his life was in danger. Somehow, NCIS managed to pull off a con whilst still maintaining the moral high ground. It also made me respect Acting Director Craig more, knowing that he questioned the methods but realized it was the best course of action.
Did you guess that it was a set-up? Do you think NCIS made the right call conning Khan into giving up MC’s IP address? Did you squee just a little when Abby said “McAbby”? (Sorry, my fangirl slipped through for a second there). What do you think about Acting Director Craig? Where was Palmer this episode? Please, leave a comment with your TwoCents about the show. I’d love to hear your thoughts.