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Review: NCISLA “Savoir Faire” (S6E17)


It’s truly going to take an amazing episode to live up to viewers’ expectations after “Expiration Date”. Of course, they all can’t be home runs, but Dave Kalstein’s script has raised the bar for the last few remaining episodes of the season, which means the pressure is on for “Savoir Faire”! Jordana Lewis Jaffe is stepping up to the plate with writing duties this time (you can tell I’m ready for baseball season to start!) and Director Eric Laneuville returns for another go behind the camera.

In this episode the team is directed to find two missing, top-security Afghani soldiers before their government secrets fall into the wrong hands. If we go by the definition of the phrase ‘savoir faire’ and how it pertains to our on-screen heroes, we know this team has always been adaptable and knows what to do in any and all situations. But in this circumstance they are working with a DEA agent who is not exactly a team player and her actions may have left the Afghani army security at risk. This makes it a mission that is not entirely in their hands, but we are used to our agents always discovering new and creative ways to solve their case and this episode is no different.

Three cheers to Jaffe for writing a simple but enjoyable script that had me laughing at every turn. Although the subject matter was serious, the exceptional banter between the whole team helped to make this a really enjoyable episode to watch. The highlight of the show was Deeks’ hilarious monologue with himself as the Ops team listened in on every hysterical word.  (“Whatcha got, public defender?  Whatcha got?”) I’m not sure how much of this dialogue was on the page and how much came from the improvisational skills of Eric Christian Olsen but it certainly made for one of the more memorable Deeks scenes ever. ECO’s comic talents were on display and it was great to see him spend a few moments on screen by himself and to get to show off these remarkable skills.

Memorable Moments

  • “He’s alive!” Sam’s back and not a moment too soon! Great banter between the team regarding who has taken the most shots in their career so far. A bit of macabre cop humor?
  • I’m standing right here, Agent Callen.” Granger just keeps getting funnier and funnier. We’re going to have to get him his own comedy hour! Actually, it’s great to see Miguel Ferrer loosen up and allow Granger room to breathe. He’s becoming a much more interesting character to me and I love seeing this fun side of this former curmudgeon.
  • Not sure if I loved or hated the Neric banter this episode. Eric is still longing for Nell’s approval and he is so sweet when asking for her help, but Nell on the other hand comes off as the alpha male in the relationship (yes, no, maybe?) and you really wish she would check her smugness at the door.
  • “She just hung up on me!” I don’t think I’ve ever seen Hetty more astounded! Great moment!
  • “Best bubbles in the world, baby.” And that’s got to be one of the best Sam Hanna lines ever too. Besides, I don’t know why Callen is so upset over their differences. Isn’t that what makes their partnership so strong?
  • Only Deeks can look good in ‘tourist chic’ despite what Kensi has to say about it. I want a pair of those glasses just to say I own a pair! LOL!
  • Kensi and Deeks’ investigation of the shop owner was classic Densi. The expressions on their faces were brilliant as she describes her morning coffee ritual.
  • Why is it that you can have all of that fire power being aimed at the van and nobody tries to hit the tires as it speeds away? Ah… come on guys! Do I have to tell you everything?
  • Callen wins the prize for the best WTF look as Deeks regales him with his knowledge of pancakes. Knew that would be a short conversation.
  • Touché? Maybe Sam just doesn’t want Kensi to miss Deeks too much or is he letting her know he’s in on their little secret? Hmmm?
  • Not exactly a Hallmark moment at the end with Nell and Hetty. Is this some sort of cryptic message of what is to come, or a scene to fill in the additional few minutes of the show? What do you think?

Deeks Moments

Deeks: Do you think she’s ordering that shot of tequila with a shot of irony?


Deeks: So our guy’s wearing a black tee shirt, baseball cap heading for a close bus stop. That narrows it down.

Deeks: Granger. Of course Granger is there. It’s like the whole Opsapalooza! What’s going on guys? What can I do you for?

Granger: Question. Do you crumble graham crackers into your s’mores cakes?

Deeks: Do I crumble, cra…wait, are you being serious? Do you really want to know?

Granger: What do you think?


Densi Moments

Kensi: This is nobody’s style. Who buys this stuff?

Deeks: OK, there’s a trunk in my garage, it’s a blue one that says ‘college’ on it. Yeah, don’t look in there.

Kensi: Nope. Note to self.


We have another break in the action while we wait for a new episode in the pipeline. In the meantime, settle back and read this week’s Deeks’ Surf Log and Kensi’s Journal… and don’t forget Writing Deeks. Next week we will also be announcing a special charity that wikiDeeks is helping to support and we hope all you Deeks’ fans out there will join in the festivities that we have planned. See you next time!


Episode: “Savoir Faire”
Writer: Jordana Lewis Jaffe
Director: Eric Laneuville
Original Air Date: March 9, 2015


Diane Volpe is a Contributing Editor at

Follow her on Twitter: @phillydi


About Diane (436 Articles)
Founder, Writer and Contributing Editor of wikiDeeks. Always wanted to put together a talented team of writers and graphic designers who loved NCISLA and Marty Deeks in particular! My dream came true! Hope you enjoy what we have created!

6 Comments on Review: NCISLA “Savoir Faire” (S6E17)

  1. My belief is that Sam absolutely knows about Deeks and Kensi, or at least strongly suspects.
    I watched that scene a few times today with the volume turned up and after she reminds him that Deeks says that all the time, he says, “Yeah, now I know why”
    At first, I couldn’t figure out what he would mean by “now” he knows. I was trying to figure out if Kensi did or said something immediately before that but nothing that I think would elicit those words. Then I remembered Deeks educating Kensi on the literal definition of touche (to touch/touched). And that’s when I came to the conclusion that Sam totally knows. (Does that make sense to anyone besides me??) Especially with Kensi’s somewhat speechless/stunned reaction before getting out of the car.

    So that’s my story and I’m sticking to it (at least until next ep). I think Sam knows. I actually think he’s known since Humbug – anyone else remember one of his lines early in Line of Duty when he and Callen are on the screen in Ops and Deeks asks how their honeymoon is and Sam responds, “you two really want to go there?”. Yeah, I think he knows, and I think we’ll find out next ep when the team finds out that Sam already knew. And it makes sense if he knows that he wouldn’t really say anything – given how he and Michelle started.

    Anyway. I can’t decide how I feel. Initially, I was underwhelmed. The banter and team interactions were so funny though. The early scene with Granger and Sam, Densi at the tourist shop was hilarious (and even when Kensi is trying to be annoyed with Deeks, you can tell she kind of loves it), but my favorite was Deeks by himself in the boatshed.


    • I have interpreted the “Touché” scene with Kensi and Sam as you have, Kara! The “Now I know why” sentence seemed a bit odd at first but then I remembered and rewatched the scene where Deeks trained Kensi on the use of the word and everything seemed to make perfect sense. I am sure Sam knows about them. He was at the ice-rink and his smirk when he was talking to Michelle and his daughter was tell-tale (I think he was looking in Deeks and Kensi’s direction). At that time I definitely thought that he had seen them kissing.
      Now we have to see next episode how they (writers) decide to play this card (the team knowing about Densi). Let’s hope it will be realistic and make sense.

      About the episode in general I don’t have to say much. I am sorry to say it was probably my least favourite this season, but way better than Big brother last season.
      In my opinion this time as in many other times, Deeks (I mean ECO here) and Kensi (I mean DR) are able to turn quite a boring and dull episode into something watchable. They are so nice, so beautiful and talented that it’s a pleasure only to watch them be on the scene. But this is only my opinion, obviously.


  2. Natalie Ryan // March 10, 2015 at 5:22 PM // Reply

    This was one of the funniest episodes ever on NCISLA and I mean ever, ever. The banter between Sam and the team, Granger knocking jokes around. I mean, come on Granger? Who would tell that that grumpy guy was going to become so adorable character. Hahahha Miguel Ferrer knows his job well, it’s like he is reading fans’ minds.
    About the episode, the part when Deeks talked to himself was hill-a-ri-ous! One of the best scenes ever, and I hope that they won’t do anything stupid with “Fighting Shadows” because my brain is becoming slow, while I try to think of scenarios about the new ep, airing March 23rd.
    And about the s’mores, I actually tried one time, and it was so delicious, that this episode made me to want to eat a whole plate of s’mores. I just can’t get the picture s’mores + pancakes.
    Deeks is definitely one hell of a character, and ECO is so funny, I mean he is goofy in real life too, so it’s not too hard to play those humorous parts. The one liners that he shots, though, that’s amazing.
    Great review, and in this ep we learned that Deeks is all about fashion, yessir.


  3. Nice review, Di. I guess I’m in the minority in not loving the episode. I found myself pretty bored, and actually thinking about fast forwarding to Deeks’ scenes. I didn’t get a number of scenes, like Granger summoning Sam to the gym, like the fact that Sam would have a doctor who’s unaware of his job signing off on his competence, like the ending shot of Sam alone in the boathouse, and the ending conversation between Hetty and Nell. Plus, seriously? The second week in a row where the team goes into a hostile environment with unknown gunmen and doesn’t bother to put on vests? At least last time it was to move the plot forward and allow Sam to get shot. I wonder where their technical advisor was when they shot this one. It all just felt a little haphazard to me.

    I do agree that Granger was funny and the scene at the beach was good. And ECO in the boathouse was really great. However, it rubbed me the wrong way that Callen was such a jerk about being partnered with him. I thought he brought on Deeks’ ramblings about pancakes because of his less than enthusiastic response. These two really need to get seriously paired up so they can work out a better working relationship than what I’ve seen to date. Sam also seemed to regress a little in his attitude. Would it kill him to ask to partner with Deeks? I think it would mean a lot to Deeks if he did. I did like that at least Deeks got to express his displeasure at being treated like a third wheel, both in his wonderful monologue and with his “term of endearment” crack to the Afghani guy. I also appreciated the fact that even though Deeks was embarrassed, at least he was two steps ahead of the rest of the group in figuring out that the girlfriend was the key to finding the missing soldier. So if Deeks was mocked, at least he remained competent.

    Also, I would really love to see some reaction, some acknowledgement, when they find someone who’s been tortured in a room full of tools, that they think about Descent/Ascension. Even the rescued guy’s lines that he didn’t talk called to mind Deeks trying to reassure Sam that he didn’t give up Michelle. I can’t believe that Descent/Ascension was more memorable for me than it was for these two characters (although I can believe it was more memorable for me than for the writers).


  4. As usually nice review, but like Karen P. I am also in minority here not really liking the episode. I agree with every and each word from Karen’s comment.
    Honestly I am tired of other’s behaviour towards Deeks. Like Callen’s this time. At this moment I am so angry at Callen for such impolite behaviour (I mean to shut the door in front of Deek’s nose? I cannot find it at all funny and it is not important that it was Deeks, I would feel the same way about anybody being in such position).
    This scene reminded me why I actually stopped following NCIS (I did it because writers decided to make caricature of Tony making his head punch bag for Gibbs and mocking creature for the others. I felt like I was watching some stupid sitcom where the most important thing is to make people laugh at somebody).
    It was only Mr Olsen’s acting and enjoyment of looking his beautiful face that made me stay watching it thereafter and, yeah, the fact that he was the first one connected girlfriend and missing soldier too. Now when I think of that, Deeks is really good at multitasking; being embarrassed, competent, smart and looking hot and beautiful at the same time.
    Yes and I remembered now: the last but certainly not the least, the “touché” scene with Kensi and Sam in the car. Kensi looked so happy hearing Sam using the word “touché” that the thought of Kensi already missing Deeks flew thru my mind instantly…and I kinda love it


  5. Great review, Di. I too enjoyed the team banter between Sam and G. Especially after Sam told G that he loved him like a brother but they are nothing alike. That was a great point for the show runners to make…nothing alike yet they are as close as brothers and I totally trust that Sam has G’s back and vice versa. The bit where G came across as a bit jealous of Granger was hilarious. I also did not mind G’s treatment of Deeks…it came across to me as if G was off kilter not having Sam as his partner and backup. Especially after Sam returns after being shot. I can imagine G wanting to keep a close eye on his partner. Now, if we can only have a scene where G and Deeks come to an understanding about their dependence on their partners…ok…I guess I can day dream.

    I loved all the Densi scenes and Deeks talking to himself was absolutely the highlight of the show. As for Neric which I have always rooted for and enjoyed…this episode, not so much, the scene left me thinking that Nell was too condescending…perhaps the writers wanted us to think Nell was jealous of Eric’s friends who happen to be female but…it came across as…smug as you say, Di. It’s a good thing that the episode ended with Nell admitting to Hetty that she was totally wrong in her psychological assessments, otherwise I would still be unhappy with Nell.

    Loved Granger…he is most definitely growing on me…I liked that he challenged Sam…I personally thought he was concerned that Sam wasn’t ready to be out in the field yet. I also liked that the writers are at least acknowledging that Sam was shot in this episode. The comparing of who has been shot more is also a step in the right direction in acknowledging past occurrences. I do wish they would randomly bring up snippets relating to some of the past episodes that we all feel has been left unresolved…we need closure, writers!!

    Hetty’s responses and reaction to being hung up on was not the Hetty I know and love. I thought she appeared uncertain as she fumbled through her response…our Hetty doesn’t kowtow to anyone, after all, she’s the one that comes up with questions for the presidential candidates during public debates!

    Other than those 2 issues, I enjoyed the episode. Great comments by everyone. 😄


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