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NCIS: Los Angeles – Recap & Review – Absolution

photo: cbs

NCIS: Los Angeles

Original Air Date: Nov 16, 2010

Alyssa Silva – TwoCents Reviewer

Everyone gets sent on a wild goose chase for a little black book. No, not Barney Stinson’s no matter how legendary that is. This belongs to an antiques dealer named Sebastian Renner and it contains a who’s who of top players in the spy game. Why does this concern NCIS? Well it all goes back to that innocous fake ID Hetty pulled out a few episodes back. For more on the first part of this mystery, click on the link below!

Poor Mr Renner never saw those two guys coming. He ends up dead right behind the Hollywood sign too.

Hetty, posing as Sylvia Cole, heads towards a care facility to see her husband Mr Cole. This man isn’t really her husband, as we later discover he’s a former East German spy who was smuggled into the US by Renner. The consideration? A black book containing enough ammunition to level the political security of the United States. Cole, old and suffering from Alzheimers, doesn’t remember anything about the book.

The black book (or BB as we will affectionately call it) wasn’t found on Renner’s body so Sam and G head towards his lavish mansion to see if they can spot any clues. They get chased away by two vicious looking German Shepherds who prompted a rather unpleasant flashback to last week’s Supernatural episode. Keeks, on the other hand, find out that Renner’s shooters have been locked away in County jail. This bodes well because a quick run of their photos through the computer tell the team that their German intelligence. Seems like the rest of the world wants that BB just as much as Hetty does!

The Bromantics notice a recurring picture in Renners house and trace it back to an interior designer, also known as Renner’s long-time boyfriend. G and Sam head over to a large, capitalist mall to discover Renner’s lover hogtied to a chair by German intelligence agents who should be receiving a real LA welcome over at County. At the same time Keeks are doing another sweep through Renner’s place, with the dogs taken away by animal control. They stumble across a report telling them that Renner had been suffering from brain cancer before two French intelligence agents, posing as NSA, burst into the parlour. Kensi isn’t fooled and launched a vicious kick at his family jewels, which isn’t welcomed by the rest of her male colleagues.

The influx of foreign agents forces Hetty’s hand and she brings Cole into the boathouse for the Bromantics to question. Cole remains tight-lipped, the only thing he reveals is his intense dislike for Hetty. Nell and Eric uncover the use of some Cold War hidden code found inside a mini-dictionary that was hidden inside a bookmark hidden inside a book hidden inside Renner’s library. It doesn’t reveal anything important but sends Hetty off to meet an old friend Matthias, also an ex-spy. She doesn’t hear the Bromantics plan to smoke foreign agents out after the BB by pretending to put the book out on the black market. Hetty goes to some amphitheatre to confront Matthias and after some uncomfortable flirting and subtle innuendo, Matthias wants to take Hetty hostage. Hetty refuses, of course, and Matthias is about to shoot her when BAM! Sam snipes him and the rest of the team surrounds Hetty to save the day.

Hetty goes back to see Cole at the facility to find him dead on the bed, another body at the side. We end the episode with her looking contemplative and the BB still missing.

This episode for me revealed alot about Hetty. As the leader of this group of otherwise opposing personalities, she has to remain in control and levelheaded. Hetty’s able to keep her feelings locked away tight, or compartmentalized to quote a certain forensic anthropologist.

But this time she let her emotions come through. I think I agree with G when he suggested that Hetty might have had feelings for Cole. She didn’t have to read him a story every visit, and it seemed like she was a frequent visitor. Of course this could be chalked up to the fact that she was the one who crippled him by putting two shots into his body. While she’s often pegged as the maternal, caring type, this hour allowed us a glimpse into who she was before NCIS. Hetty was a woman dedicated to the cause, and staining her hands with blood for that cause was par for the course. Matthias suggested she was vicious in her dealings but this seems to have been tempered with age and weariness for further bloodshed. There seems to be a veil of remorse hanging around her. Hetty revealed to G that Cole had asked her to kill him a year ago and the former spy did it again at the boathouse. When she goes to visit Cole at the end, Hetty still remains undecided whether she can actually put a bullet into someone not in the line of duty. If anything this episode provided us a brief, compelling look into what has otherwise remained an enigma so far. Hetty’s backstory was handled much better than Sam’s in Bounty I think.

Best moment of this episode?

French Intelligence agent: NSA!
Kensi: NCIS!
Deeks: M-O-U-S-E!

What did you think? Did you enjoy seeing the team coming together to protect their own? What about Hetty’s relationship with Cole? Did you LOL when Kensi, as wingwoman, told Deeks that he cheated on her with her brother? Give me your TwoCents!

Next Week: Deliverance

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