‘NCIS’ season 13 premiere reaction: Gibbs struggles with life and death

NCIS -Does “NCIS” get to move on now from the story of The Calling? If nothing else, we do at least feel like the show has done some justice to what happened to Agent Gibbs.

First and foremost, the obvious news: Mark Harmon’s character is alive! He made it through surgery thanks to Dr. Taft (a superb Jon Cryer), but not before battling so many of his inner demons. The struggle that Gibbs is facing in the wake of what happened with Luke is him wondering just what the purpose of it all is at this point. He’s lost some of that fire, and doesn’t feel like there is really much he can do anymore to see the world. Not even the ghosts of Mike Franks or Kelly could psych him out of that at all.

At the end of the story, Taft does remind Gibbs that he does still have his team, and doesn’t need to go through this period of forlorn recovery alone. We’re just not sure if he is going to listen. This has never been one of Gibbs’ stronger suits. His refusal to listen to Luke via Skype was just one example of that, even if he had a pretty strong motive for not wanting to do so in this instance.

Halfway around the world we did see Budd taken down by DiNozzo and Teague, and in a way that completely took away any hope of a villain monologue Budd could hope to have. It’s a moment that the show needed to a certain extent, but we just don’t feel like the emotional resonance of this story is over yet. The same goes for re-forging the relationship between Tony and Gibbs, which still felt broken at the end of the episode.

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