Published November 20, 2013
Emily Wickersham made her much-anticipated debut on "NCIS" Tuesday. In the episode, her character, NSA analyst Ellie Bishop, is brought on board to help out the team after the Secretary of the Navy Sarah Porter (Leslie Hope) discovers she's been bugged. The device that's been planted in her pen has been recording her communications (including a confidential briefing) for about 30 hours, and Gibbs (Mark Harmon) and Tony (Michael Weatherly) turn to Bishop for help with the case when they learn she authored a paper two years prior that outlines an almost identical scenario.
Described as a "reclusive data freak," Gibbs and Tony meet Ellie when she's lost in an earbud zone at NSA and quickly learn that she apparently has a photographic memory. They bring her back with them to NCIS, where they try to track down information about the pen (and Tony grills Ellie about her wedding ring).
Here's what we learn about Ellie throughout the episode: She isn't afraid to take charge and speak her mind. She's from Oklahoma, feels guilty about not being able to talk to her parents about what she does, can draw, and "food associates." She can also match Tony quip for quip, especially when it comes to "Oklahoma!"
Thanks to some savvy tracking work from Abby (Pauley Perrette), the team eventually locates who they think is their perp and Bishop stops him by hitting him with the car. Hey, whatever works. She then cleverly works her way into the interrogation room by making the suspect think she's his public defender, and gets him to give up the name and address of the man he says planted the bug.
Summoned back to NSA for a debriefing, Bishop parts ways with the team, but keeps digging into the case on her own and ends up running into Gibbs and Co. at as they're all cornering the suspect. It's clear that Gibbs is unimpressed with her moxie, but she redeems herself a few minutes later when she poses the theory that the real guilty party is someone higher up the food chain.
It's Cameron from "Ferris Bueller's Day Off!" Just kidding — sort of. It's actor Alan Ruck, playing a suit who was rejected from the SecNav post and planted the pen on Porter to carry out a personal grudge and force her to resign. Looks like that backfired!
The episode ends with Gibbs and Bishop having a heart-to-heart, where she apologizes for not being "a team player." Gibbs slyly hands her an application she turned in to NCIS years ago and tells her he'd like her to take on a joint-duty assignment. It's a pretty safe bet that she'll say yes.