It’s no secret that I’m a fan of the occasional super dark, angst-filled NCIS: Los Angeles episode. But I can enjoy the silly ones too. Today let’s talk about the Top 3 Funniest Episodes.
My single criterion consisted solely of how much I laughed while watching each episode. And while these lists are normally Deeks and Densi-centered, here I used the humor of non-Deeks/Densi scenes as a tiebreaker when I had trouble deciding.
The Top 3
It was a close race for number 1. In fact, I think any of the final three could have taken the top spot. In the end I went with the episode that had a combination of incredibly memorable scenes and laugh out loud humor. In reverse order of importance, my Top 3 is…
#3. “SEAL Hunter”
Who knew the Prince of Darkness could be so funny? “SEAL Hunter,” written by Sara Servi and Frank Military, gets my vote as the silliest episode ever. I love the Densi banter… Hot fruit discussions. Crime scene sanitation- Just so you know I’m not wearing any clothes underneath here. Sandwich toppings and intimate Jewish relationships. You are part orangutan. It’s a good butt. Deeks with a former prostitute at the gym (This is happening) as Kensi encourages him to put out in order to save Sam.
This is one of the few episodes where I rewatch non-Deeks scenes. It’s because my favorite part is guest actor Casey Sander, who plays the episode’s title character Ray Turner. He steals every scene he’s in. There’s just something that “tickles my pickle” in his commitment to Ray’s quest. The scene when Deeks leaps up onto the pergola and climbs into Ray’s second floor window is my favorite. Deeks running around in a circle keeping his back to Ray so that Ray doesn’t shoot him is so silly, and that silliness is only topped by Ray checking out Deeks’ hair (and vice versa) once Deeks and Kensi arrest him. Then there’s Ray riding with Sam and Callen to assist on the case, swimming to safety when his boat explodes, offering to help Granger with his follicular challenges, and throughout, completely in denial about his own similar challenges. Sander has a background in comedy, and I can’t help but wonder how much of what we see was improvised.
To top it off, there is also some delightful silliness with Callen and Granger messing with the FBI agent and US Attorney, stealing her gun and catching them both fleeing from a hotel trying, and failing miserably, to hide their affair. This episode is just fun.
#2. “Neighborhood Watch”
Written by Christina M. Kim, “Neighborhood Watch” is a light, frothy confection of an episode. It gives us amazing Densi scenes and a delightfully silly plot. The episode is packed with classic one-liners. Bickering about purple laundry and pretend vacuuming. Why do I feel like I just got called into the principal’s office? Brob. Martha Stewart my ass! I plead completely innocent but totally intrigued. Bro-sack. He’s gonna need therapy. It’s like an episode of Dexter in here! The sex dungeon. Really? Bra holster? Plus, throw in Arkady, who’s always hilarious, and a wonderfully married Sam and Callen. It brings a smile to my face every time I watch it. It probably marks the height of the will-they-won’t-they fun that made us all fall in love with Densi.
It should come as no surprise that this episode takes the top spot. After all, it holds the #1 spot on my list of Top 3 Examples of Densi Banter, and a Top 3 entry on both the Top 3 Uses of Humor to Defuse Tension and Top 3 Funniest Scenes lists. And each of those previous entries is for a different scene. In other words, this whole episode, written by R. Scott Gemmill, is filled with humor. It starts with the “schtolen” partner survey- quicksand, headhunters, and nightmares of Hetty and the burning monkey. Plus a later version with Neric that’s pretty funny too. The Densi banter is strong throughout, particularly as they mess with Snyder. Who can’t hear their attempted British accents when they read: Helloooo, it’s Maggie… Have you seen my corgis? They’ve run amok. There’s also Deeks and Kensi separately funny, with Kensi stumbling through a discussion with Sabatino about her partnership with Deeks, and Deeks tormenting Snyder with his conspiracy theories. Are there aliens in Area 51? Oh, and then there’s one of the all-time funniest lines, as Deeks uncomfortably wanders around the Russian bathhouse worrying about being pummeled by Viggo Mortensen.
Plus we get Arkady, hilarious as ever. And Kirkin with his love at first sight flirting with Deeks. And Sam and Callen and especially Michelle are also fantastic. Bickering about how to pronounce Babar, and musing on the reasons for their successful relationship- We don’t go to bed angry. Michelle peeved at her husband’s overprotective inclinations. Now what are you two doing sneakin’ up in here like the damn Hardy Boys?
Of course, it’s hard to look at Sidorov here and not think about what’s to come. Seeing Deeks looking at his photo gives me actual chills. But that doesn’t take away from the overall comedy gold of this #1 Funniest Episode.
Also in the Running
There were several other episodes that I think of fondly for their one-liners and overall silliness:
- “Borderline” (R. Scott Gemmill): What kind of school rewards you for bathing?… Maybe he grows on you. So does ringworm… You ready to go for a little ride? On the bikes, Deeks, on the bikes… The snake story… Your fly’s open… How’s Deeks? Pees a lot… You think I look rugged? Yeah, like Malibu Ken- he’s not anatomically correct either… Why do I keep seeing the ending of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid?… I’m sorry if my father didn’t spend the weekends teaching me how to be Jason Bourne.
- “The Livelong Day” (Joe Sachs): Mercury in retrograde, horoscopes, private eye/gumshoe thesaurus time, Matthew Dunkler, hiding out in a bathroom stall, Kensi throwing a frozen apple at Deeks’ head.
- “Anonymous” (Christina M. Kim): Electric knife training “for Piratefest”… Why would you need to hotwire an airplane?… I was the magician’s assistant last time… Hi Lisa… Pepper sprayed at the spa- Kensi? Kensi?… Gloria Allred might be calling… The zany taxidermist. Hetty as “evil stepmother” taking away the boys’ tuxedoes. (Plus bonus points for the hilarious DVD commentary.)
- “Free Ride” (Tim Clemente, R. Scott Gemmill): This is double black diamond rated… Maverick… You say day-ta, I say da-ta… Matlock jokes, Popeye jokes, Girls love their daddies… Forensic botany. Deeks claiming to have kicked Sam’s ass. Sam picking up Hetty in happiness for a return flight home.
Next week we’ll discuss a very serious and important topic, so come prepared with your best arguments- it’s time for The Top 3 Densi Kisses. Speaking of kisses, time is running out to enter our drawing for an autographed photo of that classic Densi “Descent” kiss. Just a $5 donation is all it takes.
In the meantime, which episodes tickled your pickle? Tell us your Top 3 in the Comments below.
Or, return to the last Top 3, the Top 3 Guilty Pleasure Episodes.