Thursday, January 7, 2010

What I’m Watching: NCIS: Los Angeles

NCIS: Los Angeles: Season 1, Episode 11 “Breach” (B+)

This episode showcases a number of strong aspects this show has to offer. The presence of Hetty, Hetty’s relationship with Callen, Callen’s Russian past, Sam’s time and secrets abroad, and a strong guest star are all used enormously well in this episode. Hetty’s discussion of finances with Callen, who simply places the blame on his alter ego, was a fun start to Hetty’s unusually visible involvement in this case. Callen also had a lot to do, name-dropping a Russian village that should certainly have tipped off the stripper he was interviewing that he was more than just a transportation executive. It was very informative and interesting to see a new layer of Sam, and how the loss of the boy he had saved and mentored bothered him so much. LL Cool J is an awesome action star, but he’s also surprisingly skilled at making the more dramatic moments work. The comedy in this episode worked well too, particularly the inability of the morgue technician to focus on anything other than asking if Nate was available. Sadly, I don’t think Callen and Sam are remotely interested enough in Nate’s love life to pass on the message and aid in the facilitation of some real relationship. The big villain in this episode didn’t seem at all Hispanic to me, but perhaps that’s because I know guest star Henri Lubatti well as, among other things, a French author on “The O.C.,” a hitman on “24,” and, most crucially for his prerequisite for this role, a terrorist on “Sleeper Cell.”

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