It's a bad day for a field trip, but the rare outing gives Abby the chance to show us what she's made of when she gets trapped in a pharmaceutical lab while investigating evidence in a murder case. Think Bruce Willis in "Die Hard", throw in a little "MacGyver," and you've got the "Lockdown" episode of "NCIS."
All of Season 13 to this point has been about Gibbs' makeover. Well, now Abby decides she, too, needs a change. But the makeover she wants is to move her office from the basement to the space where accounting is housed, and she wants Gibbs to help smooth the way.
Gibbs is saved by a case. A woman texting while driving hits a car. The other car's driver runs away, and lo and behold, the reason is that there is a body in the trunk, belonging to one Navy Captain Doblin.
During the post-mortem, Jimmy Palmer discovers a strange metal object in the man's lower abdomen. When he and Ducky do the autopsy, they discover the captain, a biochemist, was smuggling botulinum toxin out of the lab where he worked. The matter is complicated by the fact that Captain Doblin wasn't a nice man. He had been married three times, had no family or friends, and had road rage. Everybody wanted him dead.
While Gibbs is examining Doblin's car, his phone rings and he gets the address of a meet.
Meanwhile, Abby has discovered an unusual compound in Doblin's blood, so she decides to go to Celodyne Pharmaceuticals to find out what it is. Abby arrives at Celodyne for her appointment with Dr. Janice Brown. The two women discover they have a lot in common, including favorite charities and their favorite drink -- Caf-Pow! They also discover that the compound in Doblin's system was half of a Celodyne compound, which is weird, because the two compounds are always bonded together when made.
Almost immediately, they are trapped in Brown's lab by an Ebola leak elsewhere in the building, which is put on lockdown. But then they hear gunshots. The Ebola alert is a fake. Abby tries to call Gibbs, but the phones are dead and so is the Internet. She decides she has to risk making her way to the server room to see if she can reboot the computers.
Meanwhile, Gibbs and company are off to the address for the meet. The house is owned by a bad dude, and when Gibbs goes inside, he gets a shock. A bunch of Eastern European women are waiting for him, and wall want their Botox shots.
Back at Celodyne, Abby makes it to the server room when the bad guys come in. She escapes to the janitorial closet, where she comes up with the idea of making something stinky to get the guys to leave. It works. She then accesses the Internet and calls Gibbs, who tells her to hide. Before she heads back to the closet, she locks the system down.
Gibbs, DiNozzo, McGee and Bishop arrive at Celodyne and talk to the bad guys, who demand a chopper on the roof in 90 minutes. Gibbs leaves DiNozzo and McGee behind while he and Bishop head to MTAC (Multiple Threat Alert Center).
Abby climbs into the air duct and crawls back to Dr. Brown's lab, where they use the Caf-Pow to send out an orange smoke distress signal. Bishop sees the signal on the video monitors at MTAC and alerts McGee.
The bad guys figure out Abby is the one who locked the computer and demand she unlock it. They promise not to kill anyone, but she doesn't believe them, so she and Brown build a bomb, using the magnesium from the fire-starter kit in Abby's shoe heel. Yes, you read that right!
Abby tells a story about watching a movie in school, and how everybody applauded when the bad guys were killed. Her teacher told her, "If you take a life today, you failed yesterday." Abby says, "I don't remember much about fifth grade, but I remember that."
Abby's bomb fails -- her plan all along -- and the bad guys get her and Brown. They threaten Abby in an attempt to force her to unlock the computers. Instead, she locks the doors, making sure they can't leave the server room. She pulls out a canister and tells the bad guys that it contains DX7 poison gas, and she is willing to sacrifice her life for others. She sets it off and everyone passes out.
Just in time, McGee gets the security doors open, and he and Gibbs ride to the rescue! Everyone wakes up because Abby really was just using knockout gas. She was stalling.
Abby tells Gibbs to arrest Dr. Brown for being in on the chaos. Abby suspected when she discovered the Ebola alert was sent from Brown's computer, but also because the bad guys knew how to pronounce her name correctly. They never would have figured it out from reading it on the sign-in sheet.
Dr. Brown swears she is a whistleblower. She hired the bad guys to get her access to the servers because Celodyne was falsifying safety data to sell generic drugs that didn't work – and Doblin was a victim. His erratic behavior was because his medication was ineffective. The CEO of Celodyne is arrested.
Abby tells Gibbs she is concerned because she doesn't know what she would have done if she didn't know that he was coming to rescue her. Gibbs reassures her she would have done the right thing.
He also tells her that accounting agreed to the switch in office space, but Abby has changed her mind. She has had enough upstairs fun to last the next decade.
'NCIS' airs Tuesdays on CBS