Hiatus Part 1 is the twenty-third and final episode in Season Three as well as the sixty-ninth episode of the entire NCIS series.
While talking to an undercover agent on a suspicious foreign ship, a bomb explodes, killing the agent and leaving Gibbs injured and in a coma. While in the hospital and comatose, Gibbs remembers his first wife and his daughter as well as their deaths along with his wounding in Desert Storm and also how he made the change from being a Gunnery Sergeant in the Marine Corps to an NIS/NCIS Special Agent. Meanwhile, with Gibbs out due to his injuries, Tony assumes temporary command of the team as they struggle to find PinPin Pula who is believed to be a member of the terrorist group, Abu Sayyaf.
It's night-time and at an unnamed Harbor, a U.S Customs boat patrols the area, searching for any signs of suspicious activity as the spotlight focuses on a Turkish ship named the "Bakir Kamir".
From his place in the passenger seat, NCIS Special Agent Anthony DiNozzo remarks that the area seems like the Usual Suspects to him.
His partner, NCIS/Mossad Liaison Officer Ziva David snatches the binoculars away from him, remarking that Tony's dying words will be "I've seen this film" before looking through the binoculars herself. As she does that, Tony remarks that Gibbs looks a bit like Gabriel Byrne, the Irish actor who starred in the Usual Suspects.
Ziva wants to know how Gabriel Byrne with Tony telling her that Byrne is an actor who boards a mysterious ship like the Bakir Kamir searching for Keyser Sose. Ziva believes that Keyser Sose is another actor but Tony tells her that Sose is a character in the film who may or may not exist.
Ziva tells him she's confused.
Their colleague, NCIS Special Agent Timothy McGee emerges from the back-seat and tells them he's confused, even going to state that he saw the DVD twice.
Still looking at the ship, Tony tells McGee that the Sound of Music even confuses him. Ziva remarks that she loves that movie and attempts to sing but with lighting-fast reflexes, Tony springs from his seat, clamping a hand over Ziva's mouth before informing her that if she sings one note from the movie, then Tony's going to lock her in a room and make her listen to "It's a Small World" for 24 hours straight.
He then finishes by asking her if they understand each other.
As it pulls away to focus on the NCIS Dodge Stratus that's parked and also overlooking the ship, Ziva mumbles in agreement.
On board the ship and while captain Aris Mahir lights a cigar which he smokes, various men who work on board the ship are being examined via their passports.
One man, Abog Galib hands his passport but things go wrong when the Custom Officer reveals that they've got no record of a Abog Galib ever entering the United States.
Gibbs then states that Galib's passport has Philadelphia entry and exit stamps which seemingly date to June of the year before.
Mahir suggests that a computer glitch might be responsible but Gibbs believes that it's a forged passport.
Realizing he's been busted, Galib then bails and heads off down the ship's area with Gibbs giving chase as other workers yell at them.
Gibbs then enters the laundry room of the ship, his gun drawn and aims it at Galib who's hiding in the corner.
Gibbs then lowers his gun, remarking that he thought they were going to this without a chase.
Galib tells Gibbs that he couldn't be arrested and that he had to speak Gibbs by himself before telling Gibbs that the situation's changed and apparently, the head of Abu Sayyaf wants him to courier for him between Basilan and Pakistan.
Gibbs then figures out that it's Bin Laden with Galib adding, "Allah be willing" before apologizing to Gibbs for the chase.
"I'd chase you to Hell if it lead to Bin Laden", Gibbs replies.
Galib only tells Gibbs that he'd have to chase him off the ship. Gibbs then asks Galib if Abu have managed to infiltrate Sealift.
Galib tears his gaze away from the window and tells Gibbs that they are about to before stating that their radioman, PinPin Pula is a member of Abu Sayyaf and that Pula somehow got a billet on the Cape Fear.
Gibbs then reveals that the Cape Fear is a Sealift-munitions transport. Galib then tells Gibbs that the Fear is setting sail tomorrow to replenish Marine Expeditionary Strike 8 in the Red Sea.
Gibbs then realizes that Pula is planning on blowing up the Cape Fear while it's in the process of unloading ammo to an assault ship and remarks that the carnage will be as bad as 9/11.
"And just as terrifying", Galib remarks.
Gibbs then tells Galib that it's good work and the two then shake hands. Galib then tells Gibbs that he'll go so that Gibbs can fire off a few rounds before requesting that Gibbs does not hit him.
As Galib makes to go, he then takes his passport. Gibbs puts away his gun and tells Galib he'll call his team to make sure that they don't shoot him when they see him.
Suddenly, the sound of shouting grabs Galib's attention and he tells Gibbs to wait.
Back outside and in the car, as Ziva continues looking through the binoculars, Tony is droning on about something but everyone's startled when an explosion rips out of the Turkish ship, causing those who are on board to duck for cover as the flames surge out the open door of the ship.
It then cuts to the car where Tony, McGee and Ziva are sitting there, looking at the scene in concern.
Hours later, Gibbs who has been left injured by the extent of the blast and who's lying on a stretcher is being dragged into a hospital by a Paramedic (Hiatus Part 1) and the Paramedic's unnamed partner.
As the Paramedic glances at him, Gibbs suddenly experiences a series of flashbacks of himself being carried into a tent, having been injured while serving in Desert Storm.
Once they've reached the main area, Doctor Morgan Tolliver asks the Paramedic what they've got and is told that Gibbs is a blast victim who is suffering from burns and abrasions but that the pulse is steady.
Tolliver asks for the patient's name with the Paramedic telling him that the patient's name is Gibbs and that Gibbs is an NCIS Special Agent.
They eventually arrive at a hospital room where the stretcher is soon transferred to a bed and as Tolliver calls Gibbs's name, Gibbs has another flashback of being treated by a doctor during Desert Storm with the Desert Storm doctor calling him "Gunny" with the past and present colliding as both doctors work to treat the injured Gibbs.
After removing his shirt, the doctors soon take Gibbs off the stretcher and place him on the bed with a blanket being added.
Tolliver then tells the nurses aiding him that they're going to have to put a tube down Gibbs's throat to help him breathe which they do before recommending that they skip the X-Ray and go straight to the CT.
As they place the tube in Gibbs's mouth and throat, it's shown that Gibbs's eyes are closed which suggests that he's finally passed out.
While examining the boot of the car and searching for her own gear, Ziva tells Ducky that there was a bomb with one dead and one injured before telling Ducky that they're going to need body suits, tweezers and suctions which Ducky helpfully tells her are "turkey basters".
Ziva tells them they'll need many, many specimen jars too.
Ducky asks Palmer if he got that.
As he's wheeling by with their equipment on a stretcher, Palmer remarks that he did.
Ducky then helps Ziva with her gear with Ziva thanking him in Hebrew.
Ducky wants to know just how badly injured Gibbs is.
Ziva tells him that Paramedics took Gibbs to Emergency.
Ducky again wants to know what hospital and as they all head up through the upper areas of the ship, the trio believe that it might be Portsmouth given how Portsmouth has a level-one trauma center there.
Ziva then tells Ducky and Palmer that she didn't ask because she had other priorities at the time which were the possibility of more bombs, a crew to detain and a crime scene to secure. She also mentions that Tony and McGee will know more than she does.
Ducky tells her that he's not implying that Ziva doesn't care before telling her that he knows that she does care. Ziva insists that she doesn't need reassurance.
Ducky agrees and tries to tell her that he wants to know that just but Ziva tells him to drip it instead of zip it.
"American idioms drive me up the hall", Ziva mutters.
Ducky tries to change her mind but drops the subject.
Inside, DiNozzo who's now in charge of the investigation is talking to the same U.S Custom Officer that was seen accompanying Gibbs at the beginning.
The Custom Officer tells him that the radioman, PinPin Pula is missing. Tony wants a BOLO to be put out for PinPin.
Ducky then arrives and asks Tony what the news on Gibbs is. Tony states that there hasn't been any and that Portsmouth Trauma said to call back in an hour. Ducky's thrilled that Gibbs is in Portsmouth. The Customs Officer then tells Tony that he'll put that BOLO out.
Ziva wants to know if they've got a suspect.
As they head up some steps, Tony tells them that it's PinPin Pula before remarking what kind of a name PinPin is.
Ducky states that it's Filipino and that in Tagalog, it means "Rice, paddy, dike". Ziva urges Tony not to say anything which causes someone to laugh.
As they all head off, Ducky then remarks that he thought that it was an accurate translation.
After studying Jenny's NCIS's badge, Washington scans the system and tells Jenny that Gibbs is in Trauma One but there's no sign of what condition he's in just yet.
She then tries to tell Jenny that she can't get into Trauma One because it's restricted to medical personnel which Jenny discovers a little bit too late.
Returning to the desk, Jenny then tells Washington that it isn't about turf. Washington tells her that it's about rules and a big one is that non-medical people cannot enter Trauma One unless they're carried in.
Jenny demands that she be given a gurney which causes Washington and another nurse to chuckle in amusement. Jenny then tells Washington that she left a dinner at the White House to come here which has Washington impressed but despite that, the rules remain standing.
Jenny then remarks that she was hoping she wouldn't have to resort to this and responds by digging into her purse and pulling out her cell-phone. Washington wonders if she's going to shoot her in but Jenny tells the nurse not to be so silly because Jenny doesn't have her weapon on her.
As Jenny checks her contacts, Washington wonders if she's calling the President but Jenny tells her that it would be overkill.
She responds by calling "Condi" which happens to be Condoleezza Rice, the Secretary of State and as it turns out, Ms. Rice is really concerned for Gibbs and is also none too pleased when Jenny reveals that she doesn't know Gibbs's condition, simply because the Head Nurse didn't let her into Trauma One.
Rice then demands to speak to Washington which Jenny then agrees to do, even handing over her cell-phone to the nurse.
Washington identifies herself and Rice tells her that she has a request.
After some harsh words from Rice, Washington gives Jenny back her cell-phone with Jenny thanking Rice before hanging up and then with that, Jenny heads into Trauma One. Washington presses the door, granting Jenny access.
And no sooner has Jenny gone into Trauma One then does the door open and NCIS Forensic Scientist Abigail Sciuto arrives in, having received the news of the explosion from McGee and after a lengthy story including the fact that she and Gibbs are tighter than blood and that there's no reason for him to be in hospital unless he happens to be dying, she's given access to Trauma One too with Abby remarking that Washington is a good person.
Back at the ship, Ziva's busy taking photographs of the room. She tells McGee that he's going to have to take a look in the room sooner or later but McGee tells her that he already did. Unsurprisingly, Ziva doesn't believe him. McGee tells her that he can't go in there.
Ziva advises McGee not to let Tony smell his fear or else he'll... but Tony, having overheard everything tells McGee that he has a special job for him. Ziva remarks that it's too late.
Tony tells McGee that a bomb dog took print of Rice Paddy Dike's foot locker before telling McGee go to tag it and then stow it in the truck so that it can be taken to Abby.
"On it, boss", McGee replies and rushes off.
Tony then joins Ziva and gleefully remarks that he loves it when McGee calls him "Boss". Ziva just wonders if that's because Tony's being nice to McGee.
Tony dismisses the thought, stating that logging foot lockers is probie work before finally admitting that he's cutting McGee (the Probie) some slack.
"What a bad day", Tony remarks.
"Yes", Ziva replies. "A very bad day".
While using a flashlight to study the room, Tony wonders what the point of origin was with Ziva revealing that it was a 55-oil gallon drum that was the origin before wondering what an oil drum is doing in a laundry compartment.
Tony tells her that ships clean them and use them for storage before remarking that the oil drum in the room probably had very dirty laundry.
"Very unsanitary", Ziva admits. She then tells Tony that the fragments suggest that it was a high explosion and states that Abby should be able to trace the taggant. Tony wants to know why the head and torso are intact when the rest of the body is a slushie.
Ziva remarks that suicide bombers wearing an explosive vest often look like this before stating that there's always something of their lower extremities.
As this goes on, Ducky joins them in the room, using a light of his own to examine the room for himself.
Tony wants to know if she's seen a foot before stating that he hasn't even seen a tootsie. Ziva's confused but Ducky corrects her by stating that tootsie means a toe although in his generation, tootsie meant one's sweetie pie.
Tony then asks about Gibbs with Ducky telling them that Gibbs is critical but stable.
Looking into the room, Ducky wonders if Gibbs was in the room when the bomb went off. Tony confirms Ducky's fears by announcing that Gibbs was in the corner of the room when the explosion happened.
Ducky wonders how Gibbs survived. Ziva tells Ducky that the washer and dryer shielded Gibbs from the main force of the blast.
As she glances out at the ruined window, Ziva realizes that it's raining.
As it pulls away from the ruined hole, it's shown that Palmer, Ducky, Tony and Ziva standing in the hall area of the ship, staring out at the pouring rain just as the thunder begins to rumble.
Back at the hospital, Gibbs finally emerges from the hospital, unconscious with a tube helping him while Dr. Tolliver updates Jenny and Abby on Gibbs's condition.
As this goes on, the nurses lower Gibbs into a bed and one by one, empty the room, only leaving a little light on. Tolliver tells Abby and Jenny that until Gibbs wakes up, no-one knows what's going on inside his brain. Abby then glances back into the hospital room.
It then cuts to Gibbs who's lying in the hospital bed, wearing a night-gown with a bandage wrapped around the top of his head and it then focuses on his eyelids which are fluttering.
Back in the present, Gibbs remains in a coma, still dreaming of his past.
The next morning, Jenny is still in the hospital room, keeping an watchful eye on Gibbs who's still unconscious although she's now staring out the window when her cell-phone rings.
With her gaze diverted, she answers it.
Meanwhile, back at the ship, Palmer and Ducky are walking down the gangplank, carrying a stretcher containing the remains of the victim while McGee follows after them.
Up on top, Tony's busy on the phone, filling her in on what happened as he reports that the crime scene's been processed, evidence's been tagged and the remains are being brought back to Autopsy.
He then tells her that Ziva and McGee are busy questioning the ship's crew and Tony even informs Jenny that they've got an ID on the suspected bomber before telling her that it's the freighter's radioman, a Filipino national, PinPin Pula who's also suspected of being Abu Sayyaf and a BOLO has been issued for PinPin's arrest.
Jenny attempts to apologize to Tony for acting out of line but Tony tells her she's the director and that she can't be out of line. Jenny apologizes anyway but she and Tony both agree that apologizing is a sign of weakness, something Gibbs borrowed from John Wayne, the Duke who used it in the movie, "She Wore A Yellow Ribbon".
Tony wonders when Gibbs will wake up but Jenny tells him that Gibbs always has his own schedule for doing things and that includes waking up. Jenny then tells Tony that Gibbs is going through REM sleep- rapid eye movement which means that he's dreaming about something and she's hoping it isn't a nightmare.
It instantly cuts to a flashback of images of Desert Storm as well as Donald Rumsfeld giving a speech before it shows Gibbs's C.O telling Gibbs that both Shannon and Kelly are dead before the C.O tells Gibbs that he's terribly sorry. "NO!", Gibbs yells and it then shows him running across a field, carrying his gun as various explosions go off behind him.
In the mess hall on the ship, Captain Mahir lights another cigar and is getting bored of the interview but Ziva then steps in, removing the cigar from Mahir much to the Captain's shock. She then breaks it in half and tosses it to the ground, causing the Customs Officer to smirk in amusement.
Mahir then calls Ziva a bitch in Turkish but Ziva reacts by saying, "Want to see this bitch to take that cigar to your testicles?" which has Mahir stunned before the Captain smirks again.
McGee, having never learnt any Turkish is completely lost in regards to what they're both talking about.
Ziva then tells McGee that she told the Captain that she understood. Mahir, however is demanding that they let his crew go ashore because they've been at sea for two months. Ziva laughs and tells Mahir that he doesn't appear to be the type of captain who cares about the welfare of his crew.
Mahir loses patience and insists that he be allowed to talk to the Turkish consulate.
The Customs Officer suggests that he can arrange that with Mahir agreeing but one look from Ziva and McGee has the Custom Officer sheepishly adding but only if NCIS agree.
Tony then makes his presence known by stating that they don't agree before sitting down at the desk and asking Ziva if she's learnt anything. She tells him that it appears that Captain or Capitan Mahir knows more than he's telling them. Mahir tells them that he knows nothing, causing Tony to smile and remark that it's like Sergeant Schultz of Hogan's Heroes who usually said, "I know nothing!".
McGee wants to know Gibbs is but Tony tells him that Gibbs will be fine and tells McGee to come with him.
As they leave, Ziva remarks that Tony will be living off coffee next but McGee tells her that Tony doesn't like coffee. Once they're gone, Mahir picks up the cigar Ziva ripped in half and groans in dismay.
Outside, Tony asks Ziva what made her suspect the captain. She tells him that the Captain smokes expensive Havanas and wears a 10-carat diamond but Tony tells her it could be zircon.
"Never doubt an Israeli about diamonds", Ziva remarks.
She then tells Tony that the captain likes money and he's the type of person Aby Sayyaf would pay to transport weapons, explosives and terrorists. Tony then suggests that they flip to see who gets to take the captain into custody and who should go visit Gibbs.
Ziva tells Tony that she'll take the Captain in because Tony doesn't speak Turkish before heading off.
Tony just stares after her, stunned.
In the morgue, Ducky and Palmer are exmaining the mangled body that was in the oil drum on board the ship. Palmer then tells Ducky that fingerprints are out of the question with Ducky telling Palmer that he was hoping for something other than the obvious.
Palmer suggests using DNA but then stops by stating that it's rather obvious. He then goes on to state that it looks like the victim was standing on the bomb because it appears to be the only explanation for how the victim's upper body is still intact while the lower half appears to have been destroyed by the blast.
Ducky then asks why couldn't the victim have been sitting on the bomb. Palmer then suggests that whatever the victim was sitting on would have shielded his butt. Ducky then corrects him by stating that it was unless the victim's buttocks were sitting on the bomb.
While Palmer wonders who would sit on a bomb, Ducky produces a piece of metal from a part of the mangled body and tells Palmer that it was someone who didn't even realize that they were sitting on the bomb before impatiently demanding that Palmer get him a specimen jar.
Palmer gives him one and Ducky drops the metal into it before stating that if he isn't mistaken, then Abby's going to find that the pieces are fragments of the 55-gallon oil drum. Ducky then starts to mention Gibbs's name but stops and gives Palmer the jar.
When Palmer starts questioning Ducky's decision to take a DNA sample, Ducky snaps, telling Palmer that they could match his teeth.
Palmer then wordlessly takes another jar and waits as Ducky gets a sample before placing it into the jar, remarking that his assistant has made a wise choice.
As he walks away, a concerned Palmer stares at Ducky.
At the hospital, Jenny and now Tony are still watching over Gibbs when Nurse Maria Baliad arrives in.
In the corner, Tony suggests using coffee to get Gibbs out of his coma. Jenny agrees but since Gibbs is intubated, they'll have to use the IV.
Just as they're still talking, Dr. Tolliver comes over and tells them to tell Abby that he didn't leave Gibbs and that their chief neurologist would have been here today anyway.
Jenny assures him that Abby will understand and Dr. Tolliver remarks that he likes a woman with fire.
"So the dog collar and tats had nothing to do with it?", Tony says.
Tolliver just looks at them before leaving the room. Jenny then asks Tony if it looks like Gibbs is in pain but Tony tells her that he doesn't know because he's never seen Gibbs display any kind of pain. Jenny then heads over to the bed, asking the Doctor if Gibbs is in pain.
Dr. Todd Gelfand then asks Jenny if Gibbs was a Marine. She tells him that Gibbs was. Gelfand asks if Gibbs was wounded in Desert Storm. Jenny agrees, stating that Gibbs has a Purple Heart just as Tony comes over. Gelfand then reveals that he was the one who treated Gibbs in Kuwait.
"Gibbs never told me that he was wounded in Desert Storm", Tony remarks.
Jenny agrees, stating that she only ever saw his Purple Heart. Gelfand then tells them that Gibbs was in a coma when they brought him to Frankfurt and even talks about deja vu. Jenny wants to know if Gibbs is in pain. Gelfand tells her that Gibbs isn't experiencing extreme pain and that Gibbs may be hurting but the only way to know is for him to tell them.
Tony wonders why shouldn't they give Gibbs painkillers just in case.
Gelfand tells them that he wakes Gibbs to wake up and that an opiate would only deepen the coma Gibbs is in right now.
Jenny just admits that she's never seen Gibbs like this before but Gelfand remarks that he has which is how he remembered Gibbs because of the expression he had in 1991 which just happens to be the same one Gibbs has right now before remarking that it's more of anguish than pain.
It then cuts to a flashback of an injured Gibbs in 1991 still wearing his wedding ring standing at Shannon and Kelly's graves. In another flashback, it shows the family in happier times, riding horses along a beach with Kelly telling Gibbs that he wants to gallop.
However Shannon urges her not to yet Gibbs urges Kelly to do it anyway.
Back in 1991, Gibbs sprinkles some dirt onto the grave and it then shows another flashback of the family sitting at a campfire together on the same beach, smiling and enjoying themselves.
It then morphs to show Gibbs sitting on the log, alone, his service weapon in hand as he turns the gun onto himself, debating as to commit suicide now that the two women he had and loved are both now dead.
In MTAC, DiNozzo is busy talking to Sam Stevens about Abu Sayyaf getting a man into Sealift because every sailor needs to go through a series of stringent security checks to be issued a special ID. Stevens points that it's a hundred and ten civilian crews and Abu Sayyaf only needs to slip a man into one.
DiNozzo then states that if Galib knew who that was or the name of the ship, then why he'd run in the first place?
Galib could have let NCIS arrest him as planned, given the information he had and then continue undercover to Gitmo. Stevens reckons that Galib didn't know but he was close to finding out or he was on to something big, something an NCIS arrest would jeopardize.
"What's bigger than blowing up one of our ships?", DiNozzo wonders.
"Blowing up a port", Stevens explains. "Did you ever hear of Port Chicago".
Unsurprisingly, DiNozzo gets distracted and even goes on to say that he saw the TV movie before recovering quickly and telling Stevens that he sees the other man's point which leaves Stevens impressed.
DiNozzo then asks if they've got any info on the ship's crew, especially PinPin Pula because they need PinPin's photo for a BOLO.
Stevens then tells DiNozzo that they took surveillance photos of the crew while the ship was docked in Istanbul and as he says that, a program concerning the photos is already running through MTAC under the watchful eye of an MTAC Technican.
DiNozzo's glad and Stevens asks him if Galib had any intel on Abu's plans, then did he have time to tell Gibbs?
"Maybe", DiNozzo replies. "They were together when the bomb went off".
Stevens sighs heavily and tells DiNozzo that Galib was a good agent before voicing his hope that Gibbs comes out of his coma in time. DiNozzo assures Stevens that Gibbs will.
In the hospital cafeteria, Jenny and Gelfand are busy talking about Gibbs. Eventually, the two decide to call each other by their first names and as they sit down, Todd tells Jenny that he's puzzled because Gibbs took a long time to come out of the coma he was in back in 1991.
After being treated in Kuwait, Gibbs was then evacuated to Frankfurt and Todd eventually received Gibbs's hospital records before revealing that Gibbs was in a coma for nineteen days which leaves Jenny stunned. Todd tells her that it isn't unusual but the tests weren't typical of someone who was in a coma that deep. He then tells Jenny that a CAT scan didn't reveal any cerebral damage and that his EEG was normal.
When Jenny asks him how that could happen, Todd states that sometimes patients don't want to wake up and then asks her if she has any idea as to why Gibbs might be one of them before taking a sip of his drink. It then shows Jenny who looks puzzled but it's obvious that she knows something.
Later, an unconscious Gibbs is taken for another CAT scan and as another image downloads itself, it then shows a flashback of Gibbs arriving at the NIS Evidence Yard to see the evidence for himself.
Agent Michael Franks tell him that the NIS Agent accompanying his wife and daughter was shot in the head with the crash resulting in Shannon and Kelly's deaths. It then cuts to another flashback of the happy family fishing at presumably the same beach.
It then has another flashback of Franks telling Gibbs about the man responsible for the tragedy: Pedro Hernandez, a Mexican drug dealer who Shannon saw kill another Marine.
Back in the present, McGee enters Abby's lab and soon finds her in the corner, hugging her stuffed hippo, Bert. McGee asks her what she's doing and Abby tells him she's worrying. McGee tells her that he is too.
Two other NCIS agents arrive, carrying boxes and McGee tells them to put them on the floor.
As they do that, Abby gets up from her spot with Bert farting. This causes the two NCIS agents to chuckle and as Abby heads over to the table, she wonders if they've never heard a girl fart before. McGee tells them that it was the hippo but it's clear that they're not buying it and with that, they leave the lab.
Abby asks McGee if he's sure. McGee tells her that he is because she sounds more but he cuts himself off before stating, "Feminine". Abby then wonders if she's like a hippo cow and then takes the camera from him.
As the photos get ready to appear on the plasma, McGee stands behind Abby's computer area, prompting her to wonder what it is that he isn't telling her before telling him that he has the Three Little Pigs look. McGee tells her that he has no idea what she's talking about.
The computer then beeps and Abby remarks, "Whoa" before remarking that this is going on her wall. Ziva then comes in, telling them that she should be a professional photographer. Abby then tells Ziva that Jenny hasn't called. Ziva's confused but Abby's in disbelief and tells her that it's about Gibbs.
"Oh", Ziva replies.
Abby then begins to wonder if Jenny called Ziva because given the way that Ziva's acting right now, she might have forgotten to tell them. McGee then asks Ziva if there's anything different in the lab. Ziva then states that there's no music which has McGee agreeing with her straightaway.
Abby then wonders what if it had been Gibbs's guts that had been all over the room in the aftermath of the explosion. Ziva then tells Abby that they aren't but Abby insists by asking Ziva what if it had been Gibbs. Ziva remarks that the stain would be coffee brown than red.
After that, the two women then exchange blows with one another by slapping each other across the face and as they stand off, McGee looks on, stunned while the lighting crackles.
Down in the morgue, Ducky tells Tony that the victim's skull was shattered and he was blown across the room as if he'd been fired from a cannon. Tony then realizes that it was the oil drum. Ducky has no idea what the victim/their guest was doing in an oil drum because he hasn't got the foggiest idea.
Tony wonders if there's any other explanations but Ducky tells him that there isn't and well, there's none that would explain the victim's remains. As they both study the body, Tony tells Ducky that he needs a positive ID on the body with Ducky telling him that the DNA is in Abby's capable hands.
Ducky then asks about Gibbs to which Tony replies, "Still out. The director's with him".
Ducky soon states that he'd better get down to Portsmouth to visit Gibbs himself but Tony tells him not that until he's finished the autopsy and while Ducky's at it, why doesn't he ask their guest what he was doing sitting in an oil drum on a bomb? As he leaves, Ducky calls that Tony sounds like Gibbs before turning to the charred body and asking their unidentified guest what they were doing in an oil drum.
Outside, Tony's waiting for the lift and as it opens, he attempts to head in but McGee comes out, accidentally crashing into DiNozzo and sending the two falling to the floor. McGee attempts to apologize but Tony ignores him and heads into the lift, snapping his fingers as he orders McGee to join him.
McGee then does so and as the lift doors, it cuts to the inside of the lift where DiNozzo asks McGee if he hates the sight of blood before revealing that there's blood underneath his nose. McGee's stunned and Tony asks for a handkerchief but McGee tells him that he doesn't have one so Tony instead settles for using McGee's tie to cover up the blood.
As he does that, Tony asks McGee that whatever he came to say better be pretty damn important.
After untying his tie, McGee then tells DiNozzo and Abby and Ziva trading blows in the lab. DiNozzo's stunned that he missed it just as the elevator door opens again.
As they both head out of the lift, Tony tells McGee to assemble the team, including Abby. McGee's stunned for a second but after getting another glimpse of the injury he accidentally gave Tony, he then heads into the lift and presses a button, causing the doors to close.
In the bathroom, Ziva who's been crying is busy splashing her face with water. Once she's finished, she stares at her reflection in the mirror as she hears Ducky asking her which hospital Gibbs is in before his voice is heard saying, "Oh, Ziva, I'm not implying that you don't care". Abby's voice is then saying, "The way you're acting, you might have just, I don't know forgotten to tell us. What if those were Gibbs's guts smooshed all over that room?".
In the hospital, Todd is telling Jenny that Gibbs's EEG and new CAT scan are both normal. He then asks her how she knows Gibbs. Jenny tells him that Gibbs was her mentor at NCIS and that he taught her most of what she knows. Todd then realizes that despite that, Jenny's still Gibbs's boss.
As they head into another area, Jenny states that Gibbs is a great field agent, that he's a great team leader and that Gibbs knows how to deal with difficult politicians more than she does before remarking that Gibbs shoots them, causing Todd to chuckle and soon they soon reach Gibbs's room where Todd mentions that Jenny didn't know him when Gibbs was wounded in Desert Storm. Jenny shakes her head and Todd tells her that Gibbs is seemingly repeating that trauma, a coma he doesn't want to wake up from.
Todd tells her that in the morning, he's going to try and find the neurologist who saw Gibbs's case in 1991. Jenny wants to know why Todd would want to do that but she apologizes seconds later, telling him that she's just tired. Todd wants to arrange a cot for her in the room if she wants but Jenny tells him she's been away from her office far too long.
As she gets her coat and bag, Jenny silently rubs Gibbs's banadaged head before leaving.
Back outside, Jenny tells Todd that she'll find someone who knew Gibbs back then. Todd remarks that it would be helpful. Jenny then gives him all her numbers and Todd takes it, telling her he'll call her with an update at 0900 or earlier if Gibbs shows any signs of waking up.
Todd then tells Jenny that it was good to meet her and the two shake hands before Jenny leaves. Todd stares after her retreating back and then walks off just as the thunder and lighting continue to rumble outside as the rain drags on into the night. As that happens, Todd glances at Gibbs's room for just a second before walking off.
It then cuts to Gibbs's eyelids which are fluttering again as he remembers his past.
It shows the happy family now watching a movie together and Shannon and Gibbs about to kiss before pulling out to reveal Gibbs still unconscious.
It then falls back to reveal a mugshot of Hernandez's face with the setting changing to that Franks's office where Franks tells Gibbs that as much as he'd like it, he can't tell Gibbs where the bastard (Hernandez) is.
Gibbs then remarks that he didn't ask Franks to. Franks then places the file down on the table and tells Gibbs he's going to get take a leak before leaving the office.
Gibbs then picks up the file and looks through it.
It then cuts to show Gibbs staring intently at the file while Hernandez's mugshot is opposite Gibbs's face.
The next morning, Abby, McGee and Ziva are all sleeping in the office when Tony comes in, carrying a cup of coffee.
Upon hearing the elevator ding, Ziva gets up and after seeing Tony enter the squad-room, clicks her fingers, ordering McGee to pay up.
McGee then gets up from his desk and puts a bill on Ziva's desk which she attempts to grab but Tony gets there first, telling them that if they're going to be betting on him, then Tony gets to collect the winnings.
After Tony has put his jacket aside, he tells Abby and Ziva to go front and center which they do.
As they stand there, Tony tells them that he knows what happened and almost instantly, Abby and Ziva start arguing but Tony stops them by stating that if there's going to be any bitch-slapping on the team, then he's going to be the one who'll be doing it before urging Abby and Ziva to shake hands.
They shake hands and Tony tells them to hug each other which Abby does despite Ziva hesitating at first but when he orders them to do a deep-tongue kiss, they respond by punching Tony in the shoulders, causing him to remark, "Now, we feel better".
Once that's done, Tony then heads to McGee's desk, asking for an update while also throwing the tie with Tony's own blood onto McGee's keyboard.
McGee puts the tie aside before telling them that they've got photos of the crew from the Bakir Kamir crew.
As the photos appear on the plasma, Ziva tells McGee to make hard copies because Captain Mahir will ID PinPin Pula for the BOLO.
When McGee asks her why she doesn't believe the Captain will lie, Ziva just gives him a smile.
Tony takes a sip of coffee which Abby seems intent on studying before Tony calls her name.
She tells him that the taggant traces on the metal fragments were Semtex from the Czech Republic and that Gaddfi before the US bombed him was handing out Semtex like taffy to any terrorist with a sweet tooth.
Tony realizes that his theory of an washing machine malfunction has just been thrown out before asking for the DNA results.
Abby states that they should be in.
"Then what are you doing here?", Tony asks.
"Um, someone called a conference", Abby replies and as she heads off, Tony blinks, stunned.
McGee then voices his belief that he doesn't think that the body in the morgue is that of Galib.
Tony just glares at McGee, causing McGee to realize that Tony just wants to be sure.
Ziva then reveals that she's asked Tel Aviv if Captain Mahir is a blimp on their radar but Tony corrects her by stating that it's actually blip.
At Tony's desk, Abby's busy getting the DNA results and confirms the team's worst nightmare: the mangled body in the morgue is that of NCIS Special Agent Abog Galib.
After recovering from the devastating news that one of their own is dead, Tony asks McGee for an update on the BOLOs.
McGee tells him that there's too many without photos and that LEOs are calling in reports on every Filipino sailor in the area but Tony wants to know if McGee ran them down.
McGee remarks that there are 250,000 Filipino sailors which is more than any nationality in the world and that at the way the reports, he'd think that but Tony interrupts him by stating that he doesn't want to hear how tough it is and that he wants McGee to run them down.
McGee finally snaps, telling Tony to stop acting like Gibbs and even Ziva and Abby agree. Tony then states that he isn't the boss because he's acting like Gibbs but in actuality, thanks to the fact that he's the Senior Agent, he's automatically the boss before telling them that if drinking coffee, staring or whacking the back of their heads helps him lead the team, then they ought to live with it.
His rant over, Tony leaves the bullpen with McGee staring at his retreating back.
In the hospital, Baliad arrives to check on Gibbs who's still in a coma.
She gets a shock when Ducky arrives in, stating that due to the fact that he heard her talking to Gibbs, he'd originally assumed that Gibbs was awake.
The two then exchange greetings and talk for a few minutes.
Once Baliad has gone, Ducky pushes over a chair to Gibbs's bedside and begins talking to Gibbs.
Captain Mahir is in Interrogation and is trying to figure out why Ziva hates him. His first guess of Ziva being Turkish is wrong while in Observation, Tony discusses Ziva being a belly-dancer and the plot of the James Bond movie, "From Russia Wioth Love" much to McGee's dismay.
Back in Interrogation, Mahir then suggests that Ziva may be Greek or even Greek Crypiot and he gets a huge shock when Ziva tells him that she's a Liaison Officer to NCIS and Mossad which has Mahir remarking in Turkish, "God help me!" to which Ziva in Turkish replies, "Too late, Captain".
She then shows Mahir her PDA which has his dossier.
Back in Observation, Tony finally figures out that "Dean Keaton" was the name of the character Gabriel Byrne played in the Usual Suspects.
At this goes on, McGee pulls a face, obviously pained at the fact that despite being team leader, Tony still manages to retain some of his original personality traits which is talking about movies.
In Interrogation, Mahir is insisting that he isn't a terrorist and that he didn't smuggle terrorists or weapons into Palestine.
Ziva then remarks about an incident where the Captain supposedly smuggled suicide bombers into the port of Ashdod.
Mahir is stunned that Mossad are blaming him for that and even more so when Ziva tells him that Mossad blame Mahir for much more.
Mahir states that he's no terrorist, that he isn't involved with Wahhabi and that he fights no Jihad.
His words anger Ziva who then snaps, telling Mahir that he profits from terrorism and for that, he should die, causing Mahir to back off.
Ziva then smiles and tells Mahir that fortunately for him, politique pratique or policy practice has suspended Israeli reprisals against all but terrorists.
Ziva then tells Mahir that he claims he's no terrorist. Mahir tells her that he swears by God. Ziva wants him to convince her and produces some photographs from an envelope before asking him to identify PinPin Pula from the photos.
Mahir hesitates for a second before eventually picking a photo.
In Observation, Tony's still rambling on about "From Russia with Love" but when McGee tries to get involved, Tony tells McGee to pay attention because Ziva's about to get a photo for the BOLO.
Ziva then produces a photograph and while it isn't shown to the camera, she shows it to Tony and McGee.
When Tony nods, McGee heads off to get a BOLO started.
Back at the hospital, Ducky's ramblings get interrupted by Todd who after exchanging greetings with Ducky tells Ducky that Gibbs was in a coma for nineteen years while serving in Desert Storm.
This information leaves Ducky stunned and he remarks that while he considers himself and Gibbs to be close friends, Ducky admits that he knows very little of Gibbs's life before they met.
It then closes up on Gibbs's eyes and shows another flashback of Gibbs heading at the Mexican border and it then shows Gibbs himself heading into Mexico, having gotten information on Hernandez's whereabouts.
It then cuts to a small little village where Hernandez eventually emerges from a church, gets into a truck and drives off.
As Hernandez drives up a hill, he is shot in the head with a lone bullet and dies instantly as blood appears on the windscreen of his truck.
It then pulls back to reveal Gibbs was the one responsible for the shot and as he collapses onto the ground, he screams.
Back in the present, Gibbs awakens from his coma much to Todd and Ducky's surprise. Nurse Baliad holds Gibbs down while Todd removes the tube from Gibbs's throat.
As Gibbs tries to get his bearings, he tells Todd that he remembers everything but everyone's stunned when Gibbs admits that he doesn't know who Ducky is.
It then cuts to Gibbs who's lying on the bed, stunned as "To Be Continued" appears on the screen.
- In this episode, Tony remarks that he would have a better chance of dating Jessica Alba than Abu Sayyaf has of infiltrating SeaLift. Michael Weatherly (who plays Tony) starred with Jessica Alba in the series, "Dark Angel", playing the role of Logan Cale, her love interest. Furthermore, the two actors dated for four years and were even engaged.
- This is the second time it has rained in the NCIS universe, the first being during the Season 3 premiere episode, Kill Ari Part 1 (episode) as it rained rather heavily just hours after Special Agent Caitlin Todd was shot dead at the hands of double agent Ari Haswari, presumably to reflect the mood of the team who were grieving for her.
- Season Three Cast
|Leroy Jethro Gibbs||Mark Harmon||An NCIS Special Agent in charge of the main NCIS Major Case Response Team.|
|Anthony DiNozzo||Michael Weatherly||The Senior Agent of the main NCIS Major Case Response Team and also the second-in-command.|
|Abigail Sciuto||Pauley Perette||A Goth who is also the Chief Forensic Scientist and who also works for the NCIS Major Case Response Team.|
|Timothy McGee||Sean Murray (actor)||An NCIS Special Agent previously assigned to the Norfolk Naval Base who is now the Junior Agent of the main NCIS Major Case Response Team.|
|Jennifer Shepard||Lauren Holly||The Director of NCIS who was also Gibbs's former girlfriend and partner.|
|Ziva David||Cote de Pablo||The Mossad Liaison Officer to NCIS.|
|Donald Mallard||David McCallum||NCIS's Chief Medical Examiner.|
|James Palmer||Brian Dietzen||Ducky's assistant.|
|Michael Franks||Muse Watson||Gibbs's former C.O and the one who helped him join NCIS/NIS. Appears only in flashbacks.|
|Shannon Gibbs||Darby Stanchfield||Gibbs's murdered wife.|
|Kelly Gibbs||Mary Mouser||Gibbs's murdered young daughter.|
|Sam Stevens||Cotter Smith||NCIS Special Agent in Charge.|
|Aris Mahir||Christopher Maher||The Captain of the Turkish ship.|
|Abog Galib||Burt Bulos||An NCIS Special Agent. Is actually Abu Sayyaf terrorist, PinPin Pula who killed the real Galib and stole his identity.|
|Morgan Tolliver||Jarvis W. George||The doctor who treats Gibbs.|
|Ethel Washington||Aloma Wright||A nurse at the hospital.|
|Maria Baliad||Tess Lina||A nurse who treats Gibbs.|
|Gelfand||Jamison Jones||A man who appears in the episode.|
|Todd Gelfand||Brett Cullen||A Navy doctor who originally treated Gibbs when he was wounded in Desert Storm in 1991.|
|U.S. Customs Officer||Adam Lieberman||A man who helps NCIS in their investigation into the bombing on board the Turkish ship.|
|Gibbs's C.O||Randy Flagler||Gibbs's C.O in Desert Storm who informed him of Shannon and Kelly's deaths.|
|Paramedic (Hiatus Part 1)||Marcus Reynaga||A man seen escorting Gibbs into hospital after Gibbs was caught in the blast on the Turkish ship.|
|Alon Atu||Ariel Felix||A man who appears in the episode.|
|Marine (Hiatus Part 1)||Michael Broderick||Uncredited role.|
|George W. Bush||Himself||Uncredited role.|
|Cafeteria Cashier||Ruth Cohen||Uncredited role.|
|NIS Agent||Errik Tustenuggee||Uncredited role.|
|Dan Muttick||Hawk Younkins||Uncredited role.|