Despite the fact that on last week’s episode of “NCIS” Director Leon Vance (Rocky Carroll) told Ziva David (Cote de Pablo) that Homeland would have to handle the Ilan Bodnar (Oded Fehr) investigation, his eyes gave off a completely different signal, urging her to do whatever needed to be done to bring Bodnar to justice. Not surprising, when you consider that Bodnar murdered Vance’s wife and Ziva’s father, and that this particular branch of naval investigators tends to color outside the lines.
So when NCIS tracked down the ship on which Bodnar was trying to flee the U.S., Ziva headed out on her own to try to capture — or kill him. The two got into some serious fisticuffs — with Bodnar falling to his death, just as Leroy Gibbs (Mark Harmon), Tony DiNozzo (Michael Weatherly), and Tim McGee (Sean Murray) arrived to try to keep her from doing something stupid.
This week on “NCIS,” there will be consequences to their actions. Colin Hanks (“Dexter”) guest stars as Department of Defense Investigator Richard Parsons, who has been called in to scrutinize the NCIS team in response to the Bodnar case. Ziva could be in some serious hot water, but she won’t be alone.
“The whole team is involved, not just in the Bodner matter, but in multiple stories that we have encountered before, and it’s not a matter of passing the buck,” executive producer Gary Glasberg told xfinityTV in an exclusive interview. “Vance definitely has an investment in this, so starting next week, there is a Department of Defense investigation into the way this was handled.”
Glasberg says he is very excited about landing Hanks for the guest-star role, which will carry over at least into the season finale on May 14, if not into the beginning of Season 11. He compares the character of Richard Parsons to Ken Starr, who is best known for his investigations into the suicide death of Deputy White House Counsel Vince Foster, Whitewater, and Monica Lewinsky during the Clinton administration.
“Parsons looks into this case and it blossoms into a lot more,” Glasberg says. “There is a barracuda quality to him. Hanks has this fantastic, boyish naiveté to him that is, honestly, anything but. He brings this character to life in a fantastic way. We are a few days away from finishing up the finale and he has just been terrific.”
As an independent investigator, Parsons is appalled by the fast-and-loose methods Gibbs’ team employs, and he definitely isn’t someone who believes the ends justify the means.
“That is the argument,” Glasberg says. “Do results justify it? His counter to that would be: Is there a point where you’re taking advantage of the system and pushing it too far? Does he want to make an example of Gibbs? Is it literally a witch hunt?”
While the investigation is ongoing, it is back to business as usual for the team, which has to figure out whether or not a Petty Officer is suffering from paranoia, or if his claims of being followed are tied to a matter of national security.
“The team comes back to work, as you say, to get back to business as usual and then this investigation starts,” Glasberg says. “What is initially about dotting Is and crossing Ts in closing the Bodner case, turns into more. We start to realize that Parsons is looking deeper into how many times can this team push the envelope as far as they do and not think someone is paying attention. That is a point he brings up directly with them. Eventually, their actions are going to catch up with them. He feels it is his duty to make that happen.”
Last week’s episode began where the week before had left off with the T-boning of Tony’s car, with Ziva in the passenger seat. It looked as if they were going to be seriously injured and spend at least part of the episode in the hospital, but that isn’t what happened.
“The accident was really more about Bodnar than putting them in crazy, medical jeopardy,” Glasberg says. “God knows, there have been accidents in which people are injured in but not necessarily critically. It was more about Bodner getting his hands on the diamonds and stopping them.”
Just before the accident took place, there was a nice moment between Tony and Ziva, in which they squeezed hands. So with Parsons out to get the team, could Tiva turn to each other and come closer together?
“I think we have actually made some significant steps this season, in terms of where they are and how open they have been with each other,” Glasberg says. “There have been some significant conversations. The question is: How far will that go and how far will we carry it?”
One consideration, of course, is the fact that if they ever do hook up, one of them would have to be reassigned to another team. But there is another reason: “We continue to step it out the way we do because it is fun to tease people. The dynamic of will they–won’t they is the fun of the beginning of a relationship. I know that this has been going on for a long time, but why not keep it going? Why not continue to enjoy that spark between them as long as we can?” Glasberg concludes.