Not every episode of NCIS: Los Angeles can be chock full of recurring storylines and dramatic moments of character development. After all, it is technically a procedural. This week’s episode “Plain Sight”, written by Joseph C. Wilson and directed by Dennis Smith, offered up a typical case of the week that held my attention- but just barely.
Deeks Falls in Love… with a Car
I can’t say I blame the guy. That Porsche Deeks drove throughout the episode was indeed a thing of beauty and surely a contender for “the world’s most awesome car.” It’s hard to believe Kensi let him drive it. She’s the car aficionado and I’d have expected her to be citing statistics about cc’s and torque and horsepower and other car stats I don’t pretend to fully understand. I was happy for Deeks, even if it couldn’t last. But Mosley can’t blame him- she did leave the keys right there!
Deeks: See now that- was awesome.
Kensi: And of all the cars in the motor pool, you had to pick this one?
Deeks: What are you talking about? The keys were in it. The universe wanted us to have it. You think Mosley’s gonna let me keep it?
Kensi: Keep it? It’s not practical.
Deeks: Wanna see practical? [Pulls sunglasses from glovebox] Put those on. Come on, put ‘em on. Show me whatcha got. Know what that is? That is op-ready.
Kensi: Really? Where am I supposed to keep my long gun, and a suspect at that?
Deeks: There’s a backseat… It’s kinda got a backseat. Listen, if we have a suspect in the backseat, they don’t deserve to be comfortable.
It would seem that the beautiful automobile might have been the highlight of the episode for me. The good news is that Densi was busy, out and about and not stuck at the boatshed as in “Se Murio el Payaso.” They even took down quite a few suspects, but with the exception of their last bad guy the kidnapper, there was never a real sense of danger. Kensi tackled Tony, who didn’t even look strong enough to take on Eric (although he was nimble enough to leap the Porsche). And while fully acknowledging that I’ve often complained about team members taking on bad guys without reinforcements (as recently as two wees ago!), I will also turn around and complain that when Deeks and Kensi arrested the weapon-buying bad guys with a full back-up squad and without a shot being fired, the scene felt lacking in excitement or danger (although most of us will always be thumbs up on the tactical gear). Instead, it just felt like more exposition for the real story centered in Malibu with Sam and Callen.
The New Gals Go into the Field… and They Can Shoot
We got to see Mosley and Hidoko in the field for the first time. Harley acquitted herself nicely, working undercover, smoothly obtaining an intel-filled tablet and then saving Callen’s life when the shooting started. She just may have more ability than first impressions had indicated. Mosley was, well, Mosley. She showed off her shooting skills at the range but didn’t get involved in any of the takedowns. I’d sure like to see her moving around, fighting some suspects. Her UConn basketball experience indicates that she has major athletic ability and it would be fun to see her show it off. It would be even more interesting to see her play an undercover role that’s different from her stiff EAD self. Just how well can Nia Long play a character that differs from Mosley? And how adept is Mosley at loosening up if the job requires it?
Perhaps more importantly, Hidoko took out a bad guy in deadly OSP fashion. Sam appeared to have killed the sniper, and Deeks the kidnapper. More bodies for Mosley to count. But will she hold Hidoko to the same high standards and criticize her for using deadly force? Will she worry she’s being turned to the dark side by her time in L.A.? My guess is that your perspective changes when you find yourself in the middle of the action, and given Mosley’s first-hand observation, I don’t expect any repercussions for Hidoko.
Sam Trusts His Gut… whether It’s Right or Wrong
The most interesting dialog of the episode belonged to Sam and Callen. Their banter about Sam’s new home provided a fun start and finish. Their discussion of whether we ever really know anyone gave us the episode’s looming question about whether Sam’s friend Byron was as guilty as he appeared. But when Sam spoke about his radar rarely being off, my mind flashed to his previously malfunctioning radar towards Deeks. Maybe it’s due to a recent re-read of some post-“Ascent” fan fics, but I couldn’t help but think back to how wrong Sam had been about Deeks’ character. When Callen repeated Sam’s own words that, “Sometimes when people show us who they really are, we need to believe ‘em,” it prompted thoughts of all the years Deeks spent trying to prove himself to Sam, to show him who he really is. At least Sam acknowledged a need for balance, so maybe he’s learned his lesson?
- Hetty sure has been scarce so far this season. It’s as if they’re going to use this slowly continuing story as a way to provide Linda Hunt with extensive time off. I hope all is well with her and that she’s enjoying a well-deserved break .
- I’d actually vote Yes on the man-bun. Maybe Deeks can try it out for an undercover assignment?
- It appeared that Eric Christian Olsen was having as much fun driving the Porsche as Deeks. I enjoyed that leap out of the convertible after Kensi tackled their suspect. And did anyone else but me channel a “yee-haw” from Kensi from a previous such tackle? I bet a number of you could even name the episode.
- Kensi never liked reality shows? I’m sorry, what?
Come back later this week for new installments of the Surf Log, Kensi’s Journal, and the Drabble of the Week. And next week Jericho Steele takes the reviewing reigns. I know his review will be fantastic, although something tells me he may not be quite as excited about that arm-wrestling scene as I will be. In the meantime, what did you think of “Plain Sight?”