Tag Archives: Linda Hunt

S08E17 Queen Pin

It seems to be a common trend that whilst Sam is always present and quite often a force to be reckoned with in each episode, he rarely gets a chance to shine.  When he has, his integrity has been called in to question.  Think of the episodes involving Jada Khaled, his former NCIS partner (pre-Callen) and even when he was framed for murder.  Queen Pin is Sam’s turn to demonstrate his undercover skills and importantly, he gets to do that without Callen present and without doubting his honour.    Continue reading

S08E16 Old Tricks

Season 8 has been fairly serious.  Kensi has fought her way back to full fitness, Deeks has struggled at times to support her, Callen was forced to confront the reality of his father’s abandonment and Granger’s deterioration has been heartbreaking.  It was only fitting that after the intensity of the three episode mole arc, that Old Tricks should be heavy with amusement.  It’s such a shame that this fails to live up to its potential, a rarity for writer Andrew Bartels who has created gems such as Allegiance (S5), The Grey Man, Humbug (S6), Angels & Daemon (S7) and this season’s Glasnost, which reunited Callen with his newly found father.  It has frequently been proven that the case becomes irrelevant when the focus is on character development.  But here the case is not particularly interesting, and on the surface at least, is in no way connected to the development of Callen or the exploration of Nell and Eric’s relationship, or even the psychological impact their work. Continue reading

S08E14 Under Siege

Last week’s  episode left the team in dire-straights as planted evidence meant the men (bar Eric) were arrested by different agencies and Granger was fighting for his life.  The rest were left holding the fort and finally inroads were made to identifying the mole or at least who is behind their security breaches; the CIA.  In Under Siege the focus again is on individual predicaments as Hetty deliberately separates herself from her team and then Kensi is kidnapped.  There are numerous threads and sub plots and all of it is worthy of attention, from the men in jail to Hetty’s daring plan and Kensi’s ordeal.  And that is before tackling why the CIA want to bring down the team. Continue reading

S08E13 Hot Water

Hetty’s self-imposed deadline for a successful mole hunt has just expired and Under Secretary of Defence Duggan arrives at NCIS to accept her resignation.  But it seems that the mole is also aware of the deadline as bang on the ninety days, the team is sent in to disarray when Granger, Sam, Deeks and Callen are all arrested by different agencies and for different crimes. Continue reading

S08E08 Crazy Train

NCIS Los Angeles is an office that specialises in undercover work and it’s been a while since any of the team have been on assignment.  Recent cases have focused on the investigative side but watching various team members adopt different personas differentiates this show from the mothership.  Episode writer Frank Military (Spoils of War, Rage, The Seventh Child, An Unlocked Mind) has set the bar high for dark, character driven episodes and once again, he does not disappoint.  NSA Analyst Gary Dill has gone missing whilst investigating an ISIS cell who’s using a Mexican drug cartel to infiltrate the US.  Using information from two fellow analysts, the team believe Dill may have been committed to a mental health hospital under the name of Noah Leipzig, and Callen is sent undercover as a fellow patient to make contact.   Continue reading

S08E03 The Queen’s Gambit

The Queen’s Gambit picks up a day or so from the previous episode. Hetty has sacrificed herself as the mole to safeguard the rest of the team’s jobs and Kensi is still in a coma, having arrived in the States and been successfully operated on.  Even with two of the team out of action, it is business as usual and the others are tasked with investigating the kidnapping of a Muslim by a female Marine. The first thing of note is that this is a proper Marine related case – yes there turns out to be a loose terrorist connection – but the Muslims are not the bad guys, and NCIS is asked by the Marine Corps to investigate. Continue reading

S8 Premiere: E01 High Value Target & E02 Belly of the Beast

The season 8 premiere of NCIS: Los Angeles was a treat, with the first two episodes merged together to create a two hour movie; an epic adventure that ends in tragedy.  There may have been no cliff hanger at the end of the previous season but there were plenty of threads to be pulled, the main one being the mole, who has been floating around since season six.  That mole may have been captured but there is another at large, one that has infiltrated the Office of Special Projects.  And that is where the opening episodes take us, running in parallel with the team’s investigation in to stolen radioactive material which leads them to Syria and a mission to capture a high value target.  And incidentally this target was in US Naval Intelligence, a Syrian born American national, who betrayed his adoptive country and defected to Syria. Continue reading

S07E24 Talion

It had been teased by showrunner Shane Brennan last September, that the finale would see Sam’s family in jeopardy.  Sam’s only known enemy is Tahir Khaled who returned earlier this season in “Revenge Deferred”; his escape neatly setting up his imminent return in “Talion”.    Talion’ law is an old Babylonion principle along the lines of ‘an eye for an eye’ ‘a tooth for a tooth’, and therefore Tahir is not only out for revenge but has come to LA to destroy Sam’s family, as he perceives Sam has destroyed his. Continue reading

S07E22 Granger, O

Like most NCIS Los Angeles episodes that feature a name in the title, the eponymous “Granger, O” focused on one character; the Assistant Director.  Owen Granger first appeared in the season three episode “The Watchers” and was instantly disliked and not trusted by the team.  He used them for his own means and investigated Kensi as a possible murderer, even ordering her to be held under house arrest.  And in Kill House, he was responsible for Nell being captured by the bad guys.  As a result, viewers generally have a love/hate relationship with Granger.  Since season four, he has gradually warmed to the team and vice versa, and has even softened slightly since his poisoning last season in Traitor, occasionally showing a slightly more human side to him. Continue reading

S07E16 Matryoshka Part 2

 

“Matryoshka Part 2” – the episode which promises to reveal Callen’s name.  For the audience, it has been seven years in the making but for G. Callen, it’s been forty odd years – as long as he can remember…

Hetty has sanctioned Sam and Callen to rescue CIA Agent Sharov from the same Russian prison holding Arkady Kolchek, and part two sees the action move to Russia. Yet surprisingly this episode isn’t really about the prison break, even though a reasonable amount of time is devoted to planning the mission; in fact there is very little action at all during the episode. Continue reading