NCIS season 16 episode 20 preview: Gibbs’ case gets personal

NCISIt’s not often that an episode of NCIS traces back to an era that was before the series began, but that is the case for season 16 episode 20. Next week’s “Hail & Farewell” will have echoes of September 11 to it, mostly because of a victim’s connections to the horrific attack. It’s a part of a case that will give everyone a larger sense of pause and beyond that, a case that is going to throw Gibbs into an even greater sense of persistence than usual.

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So what’s the reasoning for that greater sense of persistence? The NCIS season 16 episode 20 synopsis below offers you up a little more in the way of insight on that subject:

“Hail & Farewell” – NCIS investigates the murder of a Marine Major believed to have been killed in the 9/11 attack on the Pentagon after human remains are discovered at a construction site. A personal history with the victim drives Gibbs to solve her crime, on NCIS, Tuesday, April 16 (8:00-9:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network.

Obviously, this victim is someone who Gibbs cared about — maybe it’s a longtime friend of his or someone who he trained and worked under for a certain part of her life. Through the investigation, maybe he will learn something about her that he never did before.

Gibbs is a survivor. We’re not sure that this is something that’s been emphasized enough on this show. Just think of everyone he’s lost in his life, whether it be one of his great loves in Shannon, his daughter Kelly, his own father, or some who have worked alongside him like Caitlin Todd or Ziva David — who he at least seems to think is dead. Dealing with all of this death can take a toll on a person and we do think that it has made its mark on him. We think part of his practice of having rules and a routine in his life is that he doesn’t leave himself as much time to think. Anytime the floodgates open with someone new, that unsettles him and makes it that much harder to find that order and feeling of stability.

This could be an emotional episode, one that not only brings back memories of this person, but also the struggles for everyone associated with the military on September 11. It’s hard to imagine anyone whose life, in one way or another, was not impacted by that day. It’s not something that is referenced with great regularity on the series itself, and a part of the reason for that may just be a sense of awareness that there are viewers out there who have a deeply difficult relationship with the day, as well. These are all things that must be thought about if you’re a writer on this show; you want to take on some serious issues, but not to a point where it makes viewers uncomfortable to watch.

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What do you want to see when it comes to NCIS season 16 episode 20? Be sure to share in the comments below. (Photo: CBS.)

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