NCIS: LA “Defectors” Review (Season 7, Episode 9)

NCIS: LOS ANGELES The Long Goodbye

Last week I mentioned that CBS had switched the order of “The Long Goodbye” with “Defectors” out of respect for the events that transpired in Paris. And while they did do that, I was wrong in the ordering of the episodes. “The Long Goodbye” was originally supposed to air December 7th, not last night. With all that being said, the re-ordering has unfortunately put a damper on the plot. The next episode should pick up right after “Defectors” ended. Obviously the situation will be handled because Deeks, Kensi, and the team are back to normal in “The Long Goodbye.” So while CBS said the switching would not affect the continuity of the season, it actually indirectly does. For me at least, all the suspense as been taken out of the Deeks/LAPD investigation due to seeing the events of “The Long Goodbye.” I understand the network’s decision in pulling the episode. I just think a repeat should have aired in its stead versus an outing from December.

In terms of “Defectors” itself, I thought it did a much better job of handling the banter in regards to the plot. And while I appreciated the heavier tone taken with the story, I wish more time had been spent focusing on the young girls being recruited by ISIS** or the Americans like Allison being involved in the process. It’s a sad, tough topic to handle but could have been done, perhaps as a two-parter- and it would have possibly allowed another Kensi scene on the level of her speaking with the two girls or another interrogation of Allison (played by Nicole Steinwedell as a true piece of work). Long story short, a whole television series could revolve around a plotline like this. NCIS:LA did well enough with the 1 hour time slot, but the outing would have packed more punch had additional time been given.

**For all the talk about this episode regarding ISIS, the name was barely even mentioned. You could have switched them with another terrorist group, and the story would have played out exactly the same. In fact, I’m surprised CBS picked “The Long Goodbye” in its place when there was a car bombing at the beginning of that episode. It all comes down to what I said before, a repeat should have aired last week.