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August 27, 2015

NCIS: Skeletons

by Brett Love, posted Feb 28th 2007 9:44AM
Corin Nemec(S04E17) Well now, there was a lot of junk to like in this episode. I'm not sure where to start, so let's go with guest star Corin Nemec. I'd guess most people think of Stargate when they see Corin. For me, it's always Parker Lewis Can't Lose. There are probably even some nutters out there that see him and shout Mansquito! Whatever your Corin role of choice, it was good to see him on NCIS. I thought he was very good here, really pulling off creepy serial butcher.

There wasn't a lot of mystery surrounding the whodunit this week. Most people probably fingered Grady (Nemec) from the moment he showed up at the cemetery with the flowers. While the who wasn't really a big question, the why was much more interesting, and that little twist at the end came as a bit of a surprise. When Natalie Dalton (Alexandra Lydon, 24) put on her little performance in the interrogation room, followed by Grady's confession, I bought it. I didn't suspect that she was in on it until Gibbs and Mann walked up to the van.

Is it just me or was that one of the more grisly episodes of NCIS? The oatmeal like human remains seeping out of the tombs combined with the mostly fleshless skeletons were pretty disturbing. Or, as Tony put it, "That is truly appalling." Cute little Dalton covered in blood chopping up a body didn't help either. We've seen some pretty bad stuff over the years, but for some reason this one wigged me out more than most. It was a nice callback to season two's "The Meat Puzzle" though.

It's interesting, I get the sense that Col. Mann (Susanna Thompson) has taken on a bit of the Jeanne Benoit role with fans. For various reasons, some fans just don't like the character, so that little hint that Shepard floated about Mann possibly coming to work for NCIS might not go over so well with everyone. I like her, especially her chemistry with Gibbs. I don't think I would want her joining the team full time though. If I had my NCIS wish, I wouldn't mind Shepard stepping down after finally getting The Frog at the end of this season, with Mann taking over her job. I prefer Gibbs/Mann tension to Gibbs/Shepard tension. The scene at the cemetery where they were talking about the case and the relationship all at the same time was very well done.

Seeing a different side of Abby was nice. And I liked that they tied up that loose end with from "Smoked" with her romance with Marty. Since the death of Michael Gilden in December, I was wondering if they would come back to that story, or just let it fall by the wayside. I thought this was a nice way to do it, giving closure to the story and offering an opportunity for Pauley Perrette to do something different. Both her scene with Gibbs, and with Ziva were very good. The Gibbs/Abby father/daughter dynamic is great. I loved the little "You always know what to say." bit at the end.

The conversation between Ziva and Abby offered some closure on last week's story. I wasn't clear on what the fate of Sanders was, and now we know. It was well played as the bouncing back Abby hugged Ziva and she looked so uncomfortable. As uncomfortable as that embrace was, their relationship certainly has grown a lot since Ziva first showed up.

Not much progress on the big Tony story this week. Although, I did enjoy Ziva and McGee pestering him about his girlfriend. Along with Tony quickly turning things back to McGee's book. That is just going to haunt their relationship forever now. I expect we'll get in the thick of the Jeanne story very soon, only six or seven episodes left. A fun piece of trivia, Brian Markinson, who played Sgt. Trask also worked with Michael Weatherly on Dark Angel where he was Dr. Carr.

Finally, one more nugget to file away in your NCIS trivia bin, Abby's screen name for chat is Abbsolute. Overall, a really good episode. I'm eager to get back to the big arc story, but this was a fun installment.

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I really liked jenny when she first came in kill ari because her and gibbs had alot of chemistry and it was really funny and interesting to watch.... onto jeanne again, i have a feeling they are sort of going to take a kind of 'chip direction' on this one, jeanne is definately leading to something big and i agree with the comment ages ago that they are going to leave us with a huge cliff hanger.
i think if they want to introduce mann as the new director, they need to give the veiwers some closure on the whole gibbs/jenny thing and finish that one off before they move on.

a fantastic review


March 17 2007 at 11:28 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Great review, and appreciate finding someone else who shares my opinion on Mann/Gibbs, I also share the opinion that I wouldn't want her joining the team full time, but I do agree that they have chemistry.

I don't trust the director..

I didn't even get a sense of recognition with Nemic.. that's how absorbed I was with the episode. Usually, I have no problem picking out actors I'm fammiliar with. I just love NCIS, there are far too few television programs that inspire any loyalty in me.

March 01 2007 at 6:08 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I'd like to see Cassidy back too and the idea of Mann leading another team is a good one Cat.

February 28 2007 at 4:19 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I don't mind Mann has a guest on the show, popping up occasionally (like Fornell and Sacks) but as a regular cast member? Not so much.

Here's what I could live with: Mann is hired by NCIS and runs a different team (separate from Gibbs et al) and they team up sometimes to solve cases. Or she gets shipped off to a different NCIS location, like Paula Cassidy.

Speaking of Cassidy-- why don't they bring *her* back?!

February 28 2007 at 3:37 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Good review Brett. :)

I wouldn't mind Sheppard stepping down either, even though I've never hated her I've never seen her as being necessary and boy were ALL her flashbacks from the time of her relationship with Gibbs boring and shoved down our throats almost incessantly. Glad that's over.

I like Mann but like Sheppard, I don't think she's necessary. That said her chemistry with Gibbs seems more natural (probably because of the absence of flashback hammering the point that they did it).

I spotted "Dr Carr" immediately. I kept expected for a Dark Angel reference but to no avail. Another Dark Angel (season one) actor appeared this week but in Veronica Mars as one of the strippers.

Thank you for pointing out the name of the actress playing Nemec's accomplice. I knew her face but couldn't put a show on it. It was driving me batty.
Thanks for clearing that up. :)
However I knew she was in on it. It's NCIS ya know: 99% predictable.

I didn't know Gilden died before reading your blog so I just thought it was a loose end being tied up rather well as it allowed to show another side of Abby.
May the man rest in peace.

Gibbs and Ziva's scenes with Abby were pretty good. "you always know what to say" made me smirk as did the gossiping Tony, Tim and Ziva did while waiting on Gibbs and Mann.

Finally Nemec surprised me greatly here. He looked so un-Jonas like. I don't know if it's because he lost weight or if the make up department made him look so worn out but he really looked different and frightingly good for the character. Good job really.

All in all, a solid episode (Ducky HATER that I am I liked his and Palmer's meat puzzle, now if he had just STFU I would have loved it).

February 28 2007 at 3:30 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Dan Chichian

Please if they do add Mann to the team do not set it up as another CBS show with the boss banging the subordinate.

February 28 2007 at 2:44 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Personally, I'd like to see Mann take over as director, i don't think Gibbs will mind seeing as he not really that interested in dealing with all the other things the director would have to deal with.

Second Lauren Holly doesn't work for me as the boss, her character seems more invested in these side missions and trying to needle Gibbs about their past history.

But I'd also want to mention how i love Ducky and Palmer revisiting their 'meat puzzle' episode through some small jokes. I'm also kind of glad Lee wasn't in this episode groping Palmer, it wasn't funny for the a while, but now i just want someone to catch them or at least acknowledge that they know about them.

February 28 2007 at 2:40 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Toby OB

Stephen King's 'The Stand' would be my Nemec of choice.....

February 28 2007 at 2:27 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
John Hewitt

This wasn't one of my favorite episodes. The chemistry seemed a little off with the whole gang. I like Susanna Thompson but I don't like the distraction from the core cast. McGee in particular hasn't had much to do for a while and seems to be relegated to book jokes and general running around. BTW, great interview with Michael Weatherly at thefutoncritic.com this week. NCIS fans should check it out.

February 28 2007 at 1:36 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

The whole Col. Mann aspect was interesting to watch. In one scene it looks like Shepard was grooming her to take over; in another it looked like she was pissed to see Mann take such a lead role in the investigation -- and be very good at it. Personally, I think Mann would be a great addition to the show. She has better chemistry with Gibbs, and Susanna Thompson is just a fantastic actress in need of a good show.

February 28 2007 at 12:28 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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