NCIS: Season 7, Episode 4 “Good Cop, Bad Cop” (B)
Probing into Ziva’s recent past is certainly an interesting route to go down, though I’m not sure how I feel about the continual painting of Mossad and Israel as being above all incorrigibly corrupt. The tale Ziva spins about her time on the freighter is an intriguing one, and if there’s something this show does extremely well, especially recently, it’s flashing back to past events and playing them out while someone brackets the scene with narration. Tony did it extensively in the first episode of this season, and now Ziva and then Mossad Officer Ben-Gidon do it well as they’re telling Gibbs what occurred on the freighter. While doubting Israel’s ethics is a questionably advisable move, trying to really drive home the notion of nationality, duty, and allegiance adds a powerful, moving dimension to this show. The usually less-than-impressive Director Vance gets a chance to be part of such a scene where he stresses the fact that Ziva’s Israeli nationality will always be a problem if her first allegiance is supposed to be to the United States. This kind of show usually isn’t so layered, and the continuous questions and themes this show explores sets it apart from the pack. That and, of course, the fact that the cast is terrific. Tony’s rather seedy attempt to get McGee to do his busy work by installing a virus on his computer was hilarious, and the dynamic between Ziva, Tony, and McGee is just as sharp and amazing as ever.