NCIS concluded the story it began in last week’s James Whitmore Jr. directed episode “Judge, Jury…” last night, Tuesday, 7 May 2019 with the much anticipated Terrence O’Hara directed “… and Executioner.”
SPOILER WARNING: If you are an avid viewer of NCIS and have yet to watch this episode of the previous instalment, please note there are spoilers beyond this point.
Brief Episode Synopsis: “… and Executioner”
NCIS Special Agent Gibbs (Mark Harmon) finds himself the target of an extrajudicial group that has taken the law into its own hands.
And the Story Continues…
It is clear how the title of this episode fits perfectly with the previous instalment. With breaking up well-known phases, “Judge, Jury and Executioner,” for instance, to title a two-part story is commonplace within the NCIS franchise.
In my review for “… and Executioner,” I suggested Judge Miles Deakin (Mike Farrell) might was involved in the murder of Stewart Crumb (David Grammer). From what we saw in last night’s episode, it turns out I was correct. While the bailiff was the individual responsible for carrying out the murder, it was the judge that orchestrated the entire affair.
Deakin is not the only rouge judge determining what is or is not justice. In addition to the judge, there is a panel of four scholarly individuals. Collectively, these people take it upon themselves to behave as an extrajudicial panel. Because of how this panel operates, the law takes a backseat to their view of justice. As a result, laws are put to one side.
How does the story directly impact series characters?
Either on a personal and or professional level, every NCIS story impacts the series regular characters in some way. In “Judge, Jury…,” there is a scene where Gibbs is seen leaving the diner. After getting in his pick-up-truck, the NCIS lead investigative agent discovers left upon his dashboard a photograph of Pedro Hernandez (Thomas Rosales Jr.).
If you are familiar with NCIS history, you’ll know Hernandez is the person responsible for the deaths of Gibbs’ wife and daughter. Gibbs took revenge upon Hernandez early in the series. While ‘revenge’ might not be the right word, considering Hernandez actions and the circumstances, it feels the most appropriate.
The story revolving around Gibbs’ family and Hernandez’s death quintessentially highlights this point. Many NCIS were under the impression we saw a resolution to this story years ago. Because nothing is truly resolved, there is always an unseen angle to a story which NCIS teleplay writers can exploit to their advantage.
Does the criminal justice system work in these United States? While some people might argue the system does not work as it should, in respect to the story we see in this two part NCIS story, the system falls apart because standards are not maintained. Legal technicalities would not exist if it were not for poor standards.
This two-parter exemplifies how NCIS writers reinvigorate storylines. This is both a strength and a curse for the series. While long-stay fans understand the contextual importance of “Judge, Jury…” and “… And Executioner” with early seasons of NCIS, the same cannot be said for persons that have started watching the production relatively late.