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NCIS recap: A death hits the team hard, Sloane’s absence felt

NCIS Winter Chill Episode
The NCIS cast as had a very emotional season on the show. Pic credit: CBS

NCIS aired Season 18, Episode 9 on Tuesday night and it was a very emotional one. This was the first episode since Jack Sloane left NCIS, and it was made very clear that the team wasn’t doing well with the absence.

After the hostage ordeal that took place in Season 17, Kasie had begun seeing Sloane on a regular basis. Vance discovered this when he found Kasie just sitting in Sloane’s old office, deep in thought. She then told him how Sloane had been helping her deal with it all.

Torres (the fish), Bishop (a massager), and McGee (an automatic stapler) had each received departing gifts from Sloane. They mentioned that it was only the trio that was addressed in an e-mail from Sloane, leaving them to wonder what Gibbs had received. He was asked later, but he never confirmed or denied getting anything from her.

This possible gift seems to be something that will serve as a callback in an episode down the road, possibly when Gibbs meets with a character from the past in Season 18, Episode 10.

As for the case that the NCIS team was working on this week, it involved finding a man in the back of a freezer truck. The investigation had the team looking into workers at different food trucks, but the killer ended up being a parking enforcement officer who had been taking advantage of his position.

If it seems like we just glossed over this plot from the episode, we did. It is because that won’t be what people remember from NCIS Season 10, Episode 9.

The NCIS team experiences another death

Emily Fornell overdosed and died during the episode. Tobias found her unresponsive next to a bottle of pills that appeared to have been stolen from the grandmother of Emily’s friend. Tobias called Gibbs from the hospital and they then waited a long time to hear news about his daughter. The news was not good.

Back at the offices, the news hit the rest of the team hard as well. Vance spoke about losing his wife, Palmer spoke about the recent death of his own wife, and McGee just wanted to go home and hug his kids.

Earlier in the episode, Tobias had been talking about moving to Costa Rica to begin a new chapter in his life. Gibbs told him that if it was going to make him happy that he should do it and Tobias said that because everything was going so well with Emily, he felt confident that he could make the move. That may no longer be the case.

Gibbs is having a really rough time

In the span of a few days, Gibbs lost his good friend Sloane to life changes and then he lost Emily, who he has basically considered to be his own daughter due to the events of the past few years. He already lost his own family and that doesn’t even include losing Tony and Ziva. This all might start taking a toll on him and it could certainly be a way for NCIS to build up a storyline where Gibbs decides to retire from the job.

We hope it doesn’t happen, but there are some subtle hints starting to surface that NCIS might not have many more seasons on the air at CBS. There had been rumors about actor Mark Harmon leaving NCIS, so maybe there is some validity to it all.

NCIS airs Tuesdays at 8/7c on CBS.

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