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NCISLA Classified Preview: “Uncaged” (S8E23)

Title:   “Uncaged”

Airing:   May 7th
Filming:  April 4th to April 13th (this episode was filmed after next week’s season finale)
What CBS is telling us:  After Sam’s wife, Michelle (Aunjanue Ellis), is taken from her home, the kidnappers demand the prison release of Tahir Khaled (Anslem Richardson), Sam’s arch nemesis, in exchange for information on her whereabouts, on NCIS: LOS ANGELES.
What we think is happening:  Don’t know about you but I find the payoff for having Tahir Khaled released from prison being Michelle’s whereabouts as opposed to say Michelle herself is very troubling.

Be on the lookout: GUEST CAST:

Anslem Richardson as Tahir Khaled

While Tahir Khaled has been behind bars since the season seven finale, Anslem Richardson spent the last year behind the scenes on the NBC series Timeless as a staff writer.   A man of many talents.

Aunjanue Ellis as Michelle Hanna

Ellis’s last appearance (not in photographs) was “Humbug” in season six.

Not in the press release but in the promotional photos:

Layla Crawford as Kamran Hanna

Crawford also had her last non-photo appearance in “Humbug”.

David Paladino as LAPD Detective

Paladino appeared in the “Decompressed” episode of NCIS in season 13 as Retired Navy Senior Chief Petty Officer Diego De La Rosa.  Was in episodes of Colony, Rosewood, The Young and The Restless, Leverage and CSI.  Works as a voice actor in a number of video games and animated series.

David Paul Olsen as Tom Olsen

Olsen was last seen in this role in “Crazy Train” as Sam’s SEAL buddy with the boat.

:  Written and directed by Frank Military.

Oh, the maker of happy episodes is back, this time writing and directing.  Frank Military who wrote/co-wrote “Little Angels”, “Deliverance”, “Lockup”, “The Job”, “Greed”, “Betrayal”, “Crimeleon”, “Vengeance”, “Out of the Past” Part One, “Rude Awakenings” Part Two, “Descent”, “Ascension”, “Allegiance”, “Spoils of War” (which he directed), “Black Budget”, SEAL Hunter”, “Rage” (which he directed), “Unspoken”, “Unlocked Mind”, “Revenge Deferred”, “The Seventh Child” and season eight’s “Crazy Train”.

Looking at that list, Military wrote the episodes that introduced the characters of Tahir Khaled (“Betrayal”) and Michelle Hanna (“Rude Awakenings”).

Insider Intel:  Nothing so far.

Official Photographic Evidence:  At SpoilerTV this week.

Unofficial Surveillance:

Linda Hunt up in Ops:

Anslem Richardson is happy to be back on set:

This looks like a delightful location:

Some behind the scenes photos:

And some behind the scenes eating:

Layla Crawford is back:

Also in the episode, David Paladino:

(Please click through the Instagram link for a photo)


Video Surveillance:

Preview:  No generic preview this week:

Nice little bit of writer/director continuity by Frank Military.  In “Spoils of War”, Hetty spoke to Sam about rescuing Kensi in the gym in pretty much the same location (and definitely the same camera angles) as she’s speaking to him in this “Uncaged” promo about Michelle.

Sneak Peeks:  CBS did not put the regular sneak peeks to the NCIS: Los Angeles channel at YouTube.  Thanks to Alasia, we have the video through dailymotion:

This does not look to be the happiest of episodes….oh yeah, Frank Military.

Possible Sports Related Delays:  None expected.

Back next week for the season eight finale!



Tess DiCorsi is a wikiDeeks contributor. You can read more by Tess HERE.

42 Comments on NCISLA Classified Preview: “Uncaged” (S8E23)

  1. sassyzazzi // May 6, 2017 at 9:38 AM // Reply

    On a repetitive note thank you so much for doing this all season. This is so helpful, informative, and just fandom fun. I am so excited for this Frank Military episode , the preview and sneak peeks are amazing. The scene with Michelle trying to get to her gun in the safe is terrifying. Quick question for you, I know this is part 1 , but after sorting through on line information and recalling what was said at Paleyfest, do you think the cliffhanger is part 1 to part 2 or do you think the finale will also be a cliffhanger, so it is actually a three part arc? thanks

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for the nice words.

      I have no real info but my guess is they’re doing a cliffhanger this year. They had a small but important cliffhanger in season six with Arkady’s disappearance and Callen’s dad showing up for espresso just after the team left Moscow that was part of the season seven premiere through Callen finally meeting Garrison. Season seven had a small cliffhanger too – Hetty and Granger not answering the calls probably about how a war criminal got info on Sam’s son (which lead to the whole mole hunt).

      My hope is that the cliffhanger is along the line of the season two, three and four cliffhangers – something bad is happening, how will the team handle it. Season five’s cliffhanger – will Callen and Sam survive, never worked for me. They are the cover guys for the DVDs – they’re surviving. A cliffhanger with real suspense – that’s what I’m hoping for (and everyone being safe and healthy by the time this is over).


  2. Thank you again for putting all this together for us fans! Its very much appreciated! I love the fact that Tom Olsen is back (DPO) Sam’s Seal buddy with the boat. I hope we get to see more of him; I also like that they have this character, a Vet, using a cane, it just adds to the character in some way I can’t explain. Well everyone hold one I think we’re in for a bumpy ride :-)! Again a huge Thank you!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you!

      Sam’s SEAL buddies have been mentioned for a lot of seasons (while he was in the Sudan with Jada and her brother he told the team he was diving with the guys in Mexico). Glad to finally have face to one of them. Also liked the idea that while Tom Olsen has probably a SEAL related injury, he’s still someone Sam can count on, giving credence to all of Sam’s talk about the SEALs being brothers.


  3. ‘Okay my bad I meant to type “Hold On I think we’re in for a bumpy ride”. Those sneak peaks already have my heart pumping — holly cow!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. thank you as always Tess,
    it’s nice to know that no matter where they try to hide the video, promos, sneak peeks and pics.. you can find them… nowhere is safe… you have made the internet your Bit**.
    thank you

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you!

      I don’t think they were hiding the clips – they were at the CBS press website, just not at YouTube. There are problems over at the “NCIS” and “NCIS: New Orleans” channel at YouTube too. What can you do? Thankfully, Alasia from Tumblr posted them.


  5. jumping right into the sarcasm and double standard approach…
    should Sam be on this case???
    isn’t he too close…hey, it’s his own words right?
    interesting that when Deeks was off to go gather information and said “whatever it takes”…
    that Sam didn’t tell ask him if he was too close or personally involved to be part of it.
    nor did he tell him that there were procedures to follow and they had to do this right…
    interesting when the situation is reversed.
    I am not sure, but I believe they call that a double standard..
    doubtful that Sam will try to reel Deeks in this time…

    He has had everybody’s back every time…always…


  6. Since we know the US doesn’t negotiate with terrorists, and it close to impossible to even negotiate a prisoner exchange with the recognized government of a legitimate foreign country…
    Just how does Kaled get released???
    A terrorist and mas murderer, who has kidnapped and killed people on us soil…and took over a military academy…released for an inactive agent, who for all intents and purposes is a just a civilian… don’t really see it happening.
    I am very curious.


  7. Okay,
    I am suffering from conspiracy brain…so stay with me.

    There was some conversation about why Sabatino was at Sam’s house to meet with Michelle without Sam knowing about it,
    Michelle is , or was CIA, right? how did she not know anything about this, or the mole?
    How did she not know about Joelle?
    is she there to keep an eye on the team??/
    IS SHE A SPY ??????

    On to current events…
    she is a strong, confident extremely well trained veteran agent, yet she behaved badly during her capture.
    she knows she only has 2 things going for her at that moment…
    a little bit of time, and the element of surprise. they don’t know exactly where she is, and they don’t know she is aware of them, so they will expect her to behave normally and not like she is under threat.
    Both of these advantages will only last for a few seconds..
    she gives them both up by running to the bedroom, kneeling down at the safe, and turning her back on the door.
    she is on her knees and defenseless, just where they would expect to find her.
    not a smart move from a veteran agent. how long did she expect it to take for people to clear a house,…mere seconds.
    if she goes out the window, even if there is someone out there, she catches them by surprise, is on her feet ready to fight, and has one on one odds.
    that is the smart move and she must know it.
    the security cameras are right on her where she is…
    Could it all be staged.
    the team does this all the time.
    Callen shooting the terrorist in public in TV
    Ray being shot then later blown up
    Deeks killing the guy at the park in The Debt.
    …could this be like that???
    can we trust Michelle, or is she a part of this…

    maybe Sam’s life changes, not because Michelle gets hurt or killed…but because she is found out to be a part of this…just like Joelle was…

    did she stay where she was so it was sure to be on camera?

    on another note…her gun Id, and passports are in a wall safe behind a jewelry case…
    not in a loose lock box under the bed… we have seen it more than once, Right?

    not likely or even what I think will happen…
    just bringing it up for the point of discussion
    I know there are lots of Michelle lovers out there, as well as those that are bitter about Joelle and don’t want another strong female character ruined by this story arc.
    I get it…I like them both as well.
    just talking here….
    I already have enough horse heads in my garage as it is, thank you…

    what do you think???



    • I, too, think Michelle might be “Joelled”, but I am still hoping for something different and something really surprising. I am still so disappointed about Joelle storyline that I hope they don’t repeat it. If Michelle is part of the mole storyline I would like to have some kind of explanation about their children being in danger and what was her part in that. (When Tahir went after Aiden, did MIchelle know about it).


      • good points,
        2 things…
        I too think the way they played out the Joelle story was awful. I fully agree.

        it would be horrible, but I wonder if Michelle knew of Tahir’s plot to go after Aiden’s school.
        if Aiden was not ever in any real danger, and Aiden was just a tool, bait , to get to Sam…
        How about if Michelle was out of the area on purpose, so her not being there would be understandable and explainable….Planned ahead.
        not sure I like it, but it is possible…


        • If Michelle is a mole that could be one way to solve it.
          If Michelle is a mole has she been a mole for the whole time she has been with Sam?, or when and why did she become a mole? and how come the team didn’t realize it sooner, especially now that CIA has clearly been a part of the mole thing.
          I am so happy we start getting answers soon, my imagination is running way too wild. I was watching NCIS episode 13×24 and I I had this weird idea that I hope this Sam drama isn’t a revelation that Jada has had Sam’s baby, I know that it wouldn’t fit storyline/timeline and would be too soap opera-like, but that NCIS episode made me think that. It definitely isn’t something I am hoping to happen.


          • since you brought up the kid thing…
            while not wanting for it to happen, it would be far more likely that Aiden is not really Sam’s child.
   about if Aiden is actually the child of Michelle and someone else,..Tahir maybe???

            dont like it one bit…


    • I appreciate your conspiracy theory, Ed. It is a good one, and plausible, IMO. Especially since many of us believed since the whole mole story line “wrapped up” that there were still so many unanswered questions. I don’t know what I would dislike more though, Michelle being killed or Michelle being involved with the mole. My recent theory is is that she won’t be killed, and that the promise of a character death will end up being Granger’s.


      • maybe I get lucky and the character death and angsty drama is Anna getting killed… and Callen being sad for 1 1/2 episodes…awww.

        I can live with it…

        I know , wishful thinking…


  8. Could Deeks give up on his search for the perfect place and perfect moment to ask Kensi to marry him?
    could he decide that life is too short and unpredictable, That they have already wasted enough time and doesn’t want to wait any longer?

    Could he at some point say something to the effect that he knows it isn’t normal, but that they aren’t normal. That he doesn’t know what will happen but he does know that he wants to go face it with her. That he wants to spend the rest of his life with her and doesn’t want to wait another minute to have her as her his wife…

    any thoughts?



    • I love this; Ed you’re such a romantic; I love that about you. You also make me laugh! Thank you! I’m also in the I think Kensi might propose camp. He has asked three times, now with this IA thing going on again she just may take the lead; I think after all he has been through I would really like for Kensi to propose. I know she has been through a lot; but she is also the one that pushed him away when she was recuperating. I guess we’ll all find out soon; I hope so anyway. These EPs look so intense its hard to imagine a proposal during all the chaos; however I love surprises so maybe they’ve TPTB have cooked up something really special; or we have to wait til season 9. We were promised a proposal not an engagement; Hum makes me wonder. One more day and we’ll all find out :-).


      • Olapa,
        I also wonder if we will get tricked again…
        I am fully aware that they specifically promised a proposal and not an engagement.
        I can’t believe they would do that to the Densi fans, but I am not very trusting by nature and the thought has crossed my mind…
        I hope not


    • That’s exactly what I said to myself after seeing the emisssion ep 23 yesterday


  9. Does anyone think that Kensi will actually ask Deeks instead?
    Kensi has started a lot of conversations lately…Bold is a good word for it.
    Will she realize she is ready, get impatient, and just ask Deeks. saying he already did it 3 times…it is her turn…
    Maybe she says something like…I still don’t see a Segway…so where is my ring, loverboy..

    yes, no, maybe???
    not sure I like the idea, but cold it happen?



    • sassyzazzi // May 6, 2017 at 12:48 PM // Reply

      Yes, there are a number of people who think Kensi will ask. I think Tess actually was the first person I saw post that idea on Tumblr quite awhile ago. Kensi has taken the lead on big steps forward in their relationship, in both “Humbug” and “Come Back” .


      • Maybe it is a combination of the two…

        I can see a situation where she says that now that she is out and healthy, that she is ready to see the ring again… when Deeks shows it to her she tries it on, of course…and then just wont take it off. Deeks just looks at her and smiles,
        she says “what”
        he says she hasn’t said yes yet.
        she says ” so ask already..before I do…because I’m not taking the ring off”.

        man am I getting sappy…
        I need a proposal bad…and soon…


    • I definitely think she’s going to ask him.


      • here is the answer…..this is from Daniella Ruah:
        TVLINE | He still owes Kensi a proper proposal, right?
        There is a proposal owed, and there is a proposal by the end of the season — but I’m not going to give you details, because it happens in quite a lovely way. Deeks didn’t want Kensi to expect whatever the proposal would be, and I can tell you that the way it is definitely surprising.


  10. sassyzazzi // May 6, 2017 at 1:09 PM // Reply

    I love it, just perfect. We all need this proposal soon!


  11. hey, nothing to this fiction writing stuff…
    I could be a fanfiction writer specializing in Densi romance and smut…
    if only I could type…
    or spell,
    or punctuate correctly,
    or follow basic rules of grammar…
    or understand sentence structure…
    I don’t stand a chance.
    I am actually kidding. I am in complete awe of those of you that can write all the wonderful stories that you do. I cannot express just how appreciative I am of all of you, thank you.
    If some of you wrote for the show, Ed would be far happier.
    …A happier, more romantic Densi…with less clothes involved…whats not to love…


    • as far as fanfic writing goes.
      I throw out a lot of hair-brained and sappy ideas, I know this.
      If anyone ever has any thought or inspiration to use an idea, phrase or scene I blindly stumbled into, please feel free to do so.I don’t have the talent to bring it to life, and would welcome someone else to do so.


      • I saw this after I posted my other comment and thought, “Or you can just do this!” And then my second thought was, “Hey, I really liked Ed’s combo Kensi-Deeks proposal idea a few posts back. Hmm….”


        • like I said
          anything i accidentally blurt out is fair game…
          I would actually love to see it in a story.


    • Come to the dark side, Ed. It’s all rainbows and unicorns in fanfiction land! You have some terrific ideas, you could definitely jot them down, through some periods and commas in there, and post it! Or find yourself a good beta!


      • I full recognize my limitations…
        true, I frequently blatantly ignore them and charge blindly full speed ahead…
        …but I do understand them.
        I would become so OCD about it that I would be lucky to get out a chapter a year at best.
        I am amazed at what you people do and just love it.
        I just do not have the skillset to do it.
        in all honesty, I have read every Densi fic,,yes, I did say EVERY fic on both FF and AO3.
        yep, it took a while…quite a while.
        I do love the romance and.. ahem…more mature content….guilty…hey, so shoot me…
        thank you,


  12. I know that the writers will play this out over an extended time, but I have a thought…
    I know…bad , right,..its never good…

    With Kensi being so bold lately and driving things forward…
    with all that has happened, all they have been through, and seeing other’s time run out far too soon…
    Then, with what happened with Jack…

    Does anyone else feel that once Kensi says yes, that she will not want to wait through a long engagement? when they are ready, they’re ready…let”s do this thing…
    I just cant see her wanting to wait. she is ready, she is sure, she is bold, why wait, let’s do it…
    just my thought


  13. Thanks for your preview, Tess. I can’t believe Season 8 is almost over…

    I’m really nervous and excited for this week’s episode and obviously for the finale.
    I’m definitely looking forward to what kind of plot twist the authors have planned.
    In my opinion, Season 4 finale has remained unparalleled so far, let’s see if this year’s stands a chance. From the promo and sneak peeks, this episode seems dark and breathtaking.

    I do hope they won’t kill Michelle, but at the same time I do hope she won’t be part of the mole storyline either. I still can’t forgive the authors for how they ruined Joelle’s character for no reason. It would be even harder for me to forgive them if they ruined Michelle too.

    I still think Nell may have had a role in the mole storyline. No one has ever explained what she mysteriously uploaded/downloaded in OPS when Under Secretary of Defense Duggan was in charge of the situation. Poor Eric would be devastated!
    I don’t remember the exact words, but when in some recent interviews the actors (LL Cool J, for example) teased a “cast member” could be part of the finale and die, I don’t know why but I immediately had a feeling it might be Nell (By the way, does anyone know if Renée has renewed her contract?). Michelle’s death seems a little too obvious to be the “real” shock for the viewers. If that was the case, maybe the real challenge for the authors would be to show the serious repercussions on Sam’s life and job next Season.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you!

      I’m with you on Michelle both surviving and being on the side of good. She has been out of the CIA for a decade or so. While she may know Sharov and Sabatino, she was not in Afghanistan when Kensi was there and all the problems with the CIA began.

      I think everyone is back for season nine. The program has certainly allowed the performers the freedom to be involved with other projects and interests – Hollywood jobs are hard to find, ones that allow personal freedom surely must be harder to find.

      Thanks again for the kind words!


    • I believe the original cast renewed their contracts at the end of season 7
      ECO and Renee would have been out of sequence if they had the standard 7 year contract and would renew this year. it is possible that they were locked in for 6 years to sync them up with everybody else.
      it is my understanding that typically 7 years is standard for a series and one year contracts after that…
      but that doesn’t make it so in this case.
      not sure what actually happened.
      at the end of last year, with the ratings drop, the time change, the change to Sunday and originally being cut to 22 episodes… it is not likely that they renewed the cast for more than a single year contract. the future was in question to say the least.
      that would mean that everybody was up for renewal again
      somebody will likely clear this up…just my guess, and quite likely wrong…


  14. Okay,
    While we are all guessing what will happen…
    By far the most burning question and important issue pending needs to be addressed.
    What will it be??? Any guesses

    Kensi Marie Blye- keep her name
    Kensi Blye-Deeks
    Kensi Marie Blye-Deeks
    Kensi Deeks
    Kensi Marie Deeks

    Marty Blye?…kidding
    Marty Deeks-Blye



  15. Some Sunday Social Media:


  16. Not included in the press release:

    Pasha D. Lychnikoff as Michael Zirov

    Last seen in “Descent” arranging the bank transfers for Sidorov’s sale of the nukes to the Iranians. And this is why they should include them in the press release – so I can come close on the spelling of the names.

    Jennifer Jalene as LAPD Detective Lisa Mayne

    Was the court clerk in several episodes of Major Crimes. Appeared in episodes of Hawaii Five-0, Days of Our Lives, Red Band Society, Chuck, Parenthood, Go On, Lie to Me, Girlfriends, E-Ring and CSI: Miami.

    Erik Palladino as CIA Officer Vostanik Sabatino

    When we last saw Vostanik, Deeks was handcuffing him to the large SUV parked outside of the home where Kensi was being held. Callen, Sam, Deeks and Kensi returned to open handcuffs.

    Rocky McMurray as Security Guard

    Rich Jackson in Amazon’s Bosch. Appeared in episodes of Ray Donovan, Rizzoli & Isles, The Mentalist, Justified, Cleaners, Torchwood: Miracle Day, The Event, Better Off Ted, 24, The Bold and the Beautiful, 7th Heaven, Desperate Housewives, ER, The Inside, Monk, Arrested Development, The West Wing, Family Affair, Malcolm in the Middle, Any Day Now, Roswell, CSI, Charmed, Almost Perfect, Frasier, Becker, Friends, Nothing Sacred, The Jeff Foxworthy Show and Townies.

    Was Officer Mitchell in the “Better Angels” episode of the mothership.

    Oh, David Paladino’s character is FBI not LAPD.


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