Published September 25, 2013
"NCIS" started its 11th season with a bang Tuesday night — literally. A terror attack on a hotel kills Secretary of the Navy Clay Jarvis (Matt Craven), and may cause Morrow (Alan Dale) to lose his leg. But it quickly becomes clear that the explosion is just a hint of larger things to come. And the group's next target? Ziva David (Cote de Pablo).
Before that's revealed though, Ziva tells Tony (Michael Weatherly) that she's on a bus to Tel Aviv "thinking" about him. And that's the only cue Tony needs to say goodbye to his goldfish and book a flight to join her. But before he can head to the airport, someone fires shots into his living room. With his trip postponed, Tony opts to hang around NCIS "as a visitor, doing visitor things." And we meet Ziva's first replacement, Murray! (They don't look alike, he doesn't use contractions, and Tony obviously hates him already.)
Meanwhile, Gibbs (Mark Harmon) goes to Iran, where he's rescued from a marketplace shootout by a surprise visitor: McGee (Sean Murray). Parsons (Colin Hanks) also shows up, and the two discover that Lt. McBride wasn't actually murdered in Iran, but rather was apparently sent home alive and killed by a local terrorist cell.
After the team discovers a former FBI employee trying to access files on McGee and Ziva, they confront Fornell (Joe Spano), who admits that he knows of a terrorist group that's targeting NCIS. Vance (Rocky Carroll) visits Morrow in the hospital to see what he knows, and Morrow warns him that the cell has its eye on Ziva.
Working with the FBI, Gibbs' investigation leads to the warehouse of the domestic terrorists (who the team now knows is responsible for both McBride's death and the hotel explosion). There, they see photographs of the group's targets: Jarvis, Morrow, Tony, Ziva, Gibbs, Mendez and McGee among them.
Back at NCIS, Parsons offers Tony a "peace offering": information about Ziva's supposedly secret safe house — but the team Tony sends to check it out finds only three bodies and a necklace. Where is Ziva? The episode ends with Tony pondering that very question — and viewers, knowing that next week's episode is de Pablo's last, likely doing the same.