‘NCIS’ (Season 12): Gibbs’ Rules


The holiday episode of NCIS that aired this week gave viewers an in-depth look at all of Gibbs’ (series lead Mark Harmon) rules that have been an integral part of the show since the very beginning of the series.

As Agent Timothy McGee (series regular Sean Murray) typed out a letter to his father on his old reliable typewriter (for a techie he sure is old school when it comes to his writing), we learn more about the rules as well as the team’s most recent case that dealt with a dangerous hacker who was wreaking havoc on the internet.

Of course, since the case had to do with a hacker and the internet, McGee was put in charge of the investigation even though that was the last thing he wanted to deal with; mainly because his father – who had been undergoing chemotherapy as part of his cancer treatment – now needed to have surgery. Obviously McGee was deeply distracted by this situation and having a big case to deal with was not helping his calm, or lack thereof.

Needless to say, it was interesting to finally get a better understanding of the rules – as confusing as they can be at times – and to get a more inside look at McGee. It was sad, of course, to learn that [SPOILER ALERT! if you haven’t seen the fall finale yet!!!] his father passed away and the letter he was writing was his final goodbye to his dad; but it was also a very touching end to a complicated storyline.

For those interested, here is a list of the known rules thanks to the folks over at NCIS Fanatic:

Rule #1: Never let suspects stay together.
Rule #1: Never screw over your partner.
Rule #2: Always wear gloves at a crime scene.
Rule #3: Don’t believe what you’re told. Double check.
Rule #3: Never be unreachable.
Rule #4: The best way to keep a secret? Keep it to yourself. Second best? Tell one other person – if you must. There is no third best.
Rule #5: You don’t waste good.
Rule #6: Never apologize — it’s a sign of weakness.
Rule #7: Always be specific when you lie.
Rule #8: Never take anything for granted.
Rule #9: Never go anywhere without a knife.
Rule #10: Never get personally involved on a case.
Rule #11: When the job is done, walk away.
Rule #12: Never date a coworker.
Rule #13: Never, ever involve a lawyer.
Rule #15: Always work as a team.
Rule #16: If someone thinks they have the upper-hand…break it!
Rule #18: It’s better to seek forgiveness than ask permission.
Rule #22: Never, ever bother Gibbs in interrogation.
Rule #23: Never mess with a Marine’s coffee if you want to live.
Rule #27: Two ways to follow: First way, they never notice you, second way, they only notice you.
Rule #35: Always watch the watchers.
Rule #38: Your case, your lead.
Rule #39: There is no such thing as coincidence.
Rule #40: If it seems someone is out to get you, they are.
Rule #44: First things first. Hide the women and children.
Rule #45: Clean up your own mess.
Rule #51: Sometimes — you’re wrong!

The 12th season of ‘NCIS’ is expected to return from its winter break on Tuesday, January 6 at 8/7c on CBS.