Last time on NCIS, Bishop avenged her boyfriend Qasim’s death by offering terrorist Chen a “Sophie’s Choice” of blowing himself up with one of his own insidious devices or be captured by an angry warlord. Yes, Chen blew himself to bits. I wonder how this will affect Bishop going forward?
In this episode of NCIS, titled “What Lies Above,” McGee finds his apartment, which was originally Tony’s apartment, being ransacked by a burglar. McGee may have some explaining to do to Delilah, who is blissfully unaware of this apartment’s shady and bloody past. Yikes!
A Quiet Night at Home
When McGee arrives home, he stumbles across something when he steps a foot in the door. He isn’t alone, as there are two burglars ransacking his apartment. They trade gunfire, and in the melee, McGee kills one of the intruders. So who are you gonna call when you’re in a predicament like this? That’s right — Gibbs!
Meanwhile, Vance and Congresswoman Jenna Flemming hit the town to talk business. Flemming urges Vance to jump into politics. Vance admits that the idea is tempting, but he can’t disguise his laughter at Gibbs moving on up to his office as the Director of NCIS. Vance takes a call from Gibbs and learns that McGee was attacked.
The team rushes to McGee’s apartment, and it is a mess. McGee killed one of the burglars, a new parole named Louis Cole, but he only grazed the other masked man, who escaped. McGee is grateful that Delilah is in Dubai so she didn’t walk in on the burglary in progress. He is also not in a hurry to call her with the news of the break-in.
Torres remarks that it shouldn’t be too traumatic, as this isn’t the first dead body that has been in this apartment. The previous owner before Tony killed three people, which is how Tony obtained the place for such a cheap price. Could it be that McGee neglected to share that Tony’s former home was the place of a triple homicide? That would be a yes, and McGee would like everyone to help keep this little secret.
Secrets or Lies
While Torres and Bishop are surprised that McGee is lying to Delilah, Quinn calls it an “omission” rather than a lie. At first, McGee can’t think of anything that the men could be looking for, and then he remembers “Rosebud.” Delilah named her private hard drive after the sled in Citizen Kane. It has every memory and picture from her childhood on, and it is missing. Gibbs asks if there could be DOD files on there, and McGee isn’t sure.
Just then, Delilah calls. McGee finally picks up the call after being told by Bishop and Torres to tell his lady love the truth. Gibbs just wants him to answer the phone. Once he does, he lies and tells Delilah that he was spending a relaxing evening at home.
Bishop digs into some research on the triple homicide at McGee’s abode. The owner, a licensed furrier name Paul Triff, killed three felons and then dismembered the bodies … with an electric carving knife. Now, that is just gross. Triff claimed that he acted in self-defense, but the jury gave him three life terms for the murders. McGee arrives, and he has also done some research on the case. Triff’s furrier business was a front for a smuggling ring, and the three men that were killed also worked as furriers/smugglers.
When Torres learns that McGee only told Delilah that there was a break-in and didn’t mention the man that he killed there, he calls McGee a liar. McGee claims that he is just trying to buy enough time to get the floors and walls repaired. McGee also talked to Tony, and DiNozzo has no idea what the burglars were looking for. So it looks like “Rosebud” was the target after all.
Louis Cole, the dead burglar, had recently served time for transporting narcotics. McGee is desperate to get “Rosebud” back for Delilah and hopefully before he has to tell her that it is missing. Gibbs jumps on the “omission” train with Quinn, but Torres is still insisting that McGee is lying.
Abby arrives and hugs McGee tightly. She believes that the apartment is seriously unlucky, but McGee thinks that the two incidents, that are 15 years apart, do not make the space cursed. Abby has some news of her own. She lifts a set of fingerprints from a crow bar, and they belong to Walter Shibberd, who has a history as a burglar.
Meet the Creepy Murderer
McGee and Torres track Shibberd’s cell phone and find him hiding in an alley with a gunshot wound to his arm. Best of all, McGee finds “Rosebud” when he takes a peek at Shibberd’s backpack. Shibberd states that he was hired by Cole to break into the apartment. Cole told Shibberd that he would know what he was looking for when he sees it, and Cole only learned about it from a tip when he was in prison. Gibbs tasks Abby with searching McGee’s apartment, only without tearing it apart this time.
Back at the bullpen, the team combs through prison databases and finds out that Cole’s last cell mate was Joe Berk, who was charged with running a Ponzi scheme. Cole did so well at his kitchen detail that he was sent to other prisons to teach inmates. Cole even trained inmates at Maryland Correctional, where Triff is housed and worked in the kitchen. McGee is not happy about this connection and worries that his home sweet home is really a dangerous place to be.
McGee and Quinn head to the prison to see Triff. Triff is super creepy, and he has a maniacal laugh. McGee reveals that he is the current occupant and that he killed Cole. Quinn asks what information Triff gave Cole, but he denies ever discussing the apartment. Triff also tells McGee that he installed the hardwood floors and bookcases himself.
Abby has a nifty X-ray scanner so that she can search McGee’s apartment without inflicting further damage. Bishop and Gibbs go to the halfway house where Cole was staying, while the rest of the team go to McGee’s apartment. The woman, Margo, who runs the office at the halfway house, tells Gibbs and Bishop that she didn’t know Cole well and he didn’t have any real friends. It seems like another dead end.
Back at the apartment, the rest of the place has been scanned, except for the area under McGee’s bed. He lifts it up to reveal some comic books, which belong to Delilah, and McGee’s father’s ashes. Quinn and Torres are spooked by anyone wanting to sleep or be romantic while one’s parent’s ashes are under the bed. Abby’s scanner finds something underneath the floor, and when they rip it up, they find a dead and mummified guy wrapped in plastic. Now, if that doesn’t say romance, I don’t know what does!
While McGee tries to talk to Delilah, Torres and Quinn squabble about whether or not McGee should tell her. Torres now believes that since McGee didn’t know about the body when he moved in, he should not tell Delilah.
The Key to the Case
Ducky and Jimmy examine the body in autopsy. The dead man is Logan Pruitt, who went missing in 2002. Pruitt was a crooked lobbyist for South African exports. Pruitt was involved in the infamous Pretoria Heist. Millions of dollars in African diamonds disappeared from a plane at Dulles that Pruitt hired. He also swallowed a key before he died, and Ducky removes it from his abdomen.
Flemming and Vance hit a political hot spot for lunch, and the Congresswoman is excited about the possibilities for Vance if NCIS solves the mystery of the Pretoria Heist.
Gibbs and McGee go to see Triff in prison. McGee theorizes that Pruitt knew that Triff’s furrier business was a front for his smuggling business, and Pruitt needed someone to steal the diamonds from the plane. Triff bristles at Gibbs’ statement that Triff never intended to honor his agreement with Pruitt. The plan was to let some time pass before selling off the diamonds. Since Pruitt didn’t honor the agreement, Triff confronted Pruitt in his apartment. When Triff demanded the key to the safety deposit box, Pruitt swallowed it rather than gave it to him. Triff decides to make good use of his nearly-finished floors and hides Pruitt there.
Triff killed the other three men when they came looking for the money. The crazy murderer also admits that he gave Cole the information about the apartment but not the exact location of the key. Triff offers to give them the location of the diamonds in return for a larger cell. Gibbs and McGee leave without another word.
Flemming arrives to see Vance and Gibbs. She wastes little time in giving her opinion that they should strike a deal with Triff to get the location of the diamonds. Vance and Flemming get into an argument as soon as Gibbs leaves.
Bishop and Gibbs talk to Margo, and she explains that she and Cole were going to use the key to make their lives better. She tells them that the safety deposit box is in a tiny bank in Selbyville, Delaware. Quinn and Torres go to the bank and open the safety deposit box, and therein lie the sparkling diamonds.
McGee goes to see his good friend, Triff, and gives him a photo of the diamonds. He asks Triff if there are any more “surprises” in his apartment. Triff says no, then maybe. Triff is one scary guy.
Flemming congratulates Vance, but she takes issue with his comment that she “dances with the devil.” Flemming considers it to be an insult to her character, and she decides to take a step back from their relationship.
McGee finally tells Torres, Quinn and Bishop that he told Delilah the truth, except for the part about the triple homicide. And when McGee arrives home and hears some noise inside his apartment, he encounters Gibbs there, already starting to repair his floors.
I liked this episode of NCIS. It wasn’t as heavy or dark as the last few episodes have been.
What did you think? Do you think that McGee should have told Delilah about the triple homicide? Do you think that Flemming and Vance are over? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.