Department of Defense Investigator Richard Parsons (Colin Hanks) is one sneaky dude. All along, it appeared as if he was investigating NCIS Special Agent Ziva David (Cote de Pablo) and Director Leon Vance (Rocky Carroll), but in reality, he was scrutinizing NCIS Special Agent Leroy Jethro Gibbs (Mark Harmon) in order to make an example of him — and not in a good way.
In last week’s penultimate “NCIS” episode of the season, he accused Gibbs of manipulating evidence and obstructing justice — and to do so, he brought not just two but four men with him to place Gibbs under arrest.
“Season 10 has been different going all the way back to January, when Eli David [Michael Nouri] and Jackie Vance [Paula Newsome] were killed,” executive producer Gary Glasberg tells xfinityTV in an exclusive interview. “In the big arc of the second half of the season, there have been multiple stories that you could say were finale worthy. Killing Eli and Jackie could have been a finale. Catching Ilan Bodnar [Oded Fehr] and killing him could have been a finale.
“It has been fun for us because we haven’t shied away from taking on big moments like that and saving them for the end of the season. The goal for me, at the end of Season 10, was to have some of these big moments happen and then have someone come in and question those moments.”
Of course, Parsons is a man who wants things done by the book, the man who questions Gibbs’ team’s unconventional methods and threatens the team’s future at the agency.
“You will see the way they approach it,” Glasberg says. “It definitely leaves you questioning, ‘Can they get through this? What state will they be in when it is over? To what end is Gibbs willing to go to keep his team together?’ There is a moment at the very end of the show, which I know I also did to people last season, but there is a scene that is going to catch people by surprise and leave people saying, ‘Wow, What just happened?’”
Get a Sneak Peek of Tuesday’s “NCIS” Season Finale:
Even though it was Gibbs who was confronted by Parsons at the end of last week’s episode, the whole team is in jeopardy of losing its jobs and possibly being charged with crimes, and they have to come together to figure out how to handle it.
Gibbs, who is never a man of many words, does what he usually does. He looks inward to figure out how to handle the situation. For him that means turning to Mike Franks (Muse Watson) for some advice, even if Mike is dead.
“I don’t like to refer to it as a ghost,” Glasberg says. “Mike gets to function as Gibbs’ conscious to a certain extent. When you have Gibbs really trying to decide what is right and wrong, and what he needs to do, who better to turn to than the person he trusted most? There are some very interesting, quirky, fun scenes that give Gibbs the opportunity to reflect, think and bounce off his conscious.”
Catch-up on Last Week’s Episode of “NCIS” on xfinityTV:
Of course, “NCIS,” which is the No. 1 drama on television, has already received its pickup for Season 11, so at least a part of the team has to be back next year. But as long-time fans of the series will recall, there was a season when Gibbs had walked away from NCIS and had to be enticed to return. This could be another one of those times.
“There is resolution and a bit of an eye opener that happens in terms of who is involved in the Bodnar story and closure to the Eli David story,” Glasberg teases. “What it does is it opens another door which leaves us saying, ‘In killing Ilan Bodnar, how much more of this is the Department of Defense and the Navy willing to turn its back on and say, ‘Well, it is okay. This is the way this team works.’”
In putting Gibbs’ team under the microscope, the DOD and the Navy will act on their own, despite the fact that the Mossad was previously involved in the Bodnar case. That means that Orli Elbaz (Marina Sertis), who replaced Eli as head of the Mossad, will not be back for the season finale. But Glasberg hints that we may look forward to seeing her in the future.
“There is tremendous history,” he says. “We have established that Orli was in some way responsible for Ziva’s parents splitting up. To have that kind of baggage between these two women is rich fodder for us to come back to, hopefully, in Season 11.”
The “Damned if You Do” Season 10 finale of “NCIS” airs Tuesday, May 14 at 8/7c on CBS.