NCIS recap: What decision does Jimmy end up making?

NCIS -- Photo: Michael Yarish/CBS -- Acquired via CBS Press Express
NCIS -- Photo: Michael Yarish/CBS -- Acquired via CBS Press Express /

Jimmy has a tough decision to make in tonight’s all-new episode of NCIS Season 16. He can either tamper with evidence or choose his work family in Episode 16, titled “Bears and Cubs.”

NCIS Season 16, Episode 16 sees Jimmy put in an awkward position. Will he tamper with evidence for his father-in-law? Meanwhile, there’s a body with marks that look like they were left by a bear. It’s time to delve into the episode with the NCIS recap.

Bear or not?

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The cold open introduces the body of a petty officer and it’s not long for the team to get to the scene — while discussing the various ways to spell weather/whether/wether (the latter, as in bellwether) — and it looks like a bear attack. However, Gibbs isn’t convinced. Black bears in the area don’t tend to attack humans.

Jimmy doesn’t seem all that convinced either. When his father-in-law, Ed, shows up, he explains that the claw marks weren’t deep enough. Then he finds a knife wound. Ed wants Jimmy to claim that it’s a bear attack and it’s a “matter of life or death,” so Jimmy lies to Gibbs to say that it is a bear attack until he gets to the bottom of it.

Ed has some gambling debts and he was offered the chance to wipe everything clean for one favor for Peter the dry cleaner. Since he owns a funeral home, he could cover a death up and make it look like an accident.

Maybe he didn’t know that the kid was a petty officer, so never expected Jimmy to be the one doing the autopsy. That certainly cause trouble. And it’s even worse when Ducky turns up, making it even harder for Jimmy to attempt to cover anything up.

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The plot thickens

It turns out that “Old Man DiNozzo” — yes, that is the name given to DiNozzo Sr. — was at the game. He finally gets into the case to clean up the mess Ed has gotten himself in, only for Ed to share that his son Stevie has been taken hostage while the murder is covered up.

When Jimmy, DiNozzo, and Ed go to see Peter, it turns out that the order was just to cremate the body. Stevie is safe for now, but Peter makes it clear that Jimmy now needs to sell the bear attack.

That’s not something Jimmy is going to do.

The team get to the bottom of the case

Throughout the episode, it’s clear that Gibbs knows that Jimmy is lying. Hey, even Jimmy knows that Gibbs knows. So, it’s not surprising that he tells Torres everything, including that he needs bear saliva to make it look like a bear did kill the victim after all.

Gibbs and the rest of the team are looking into the petty officer’s final steps, which involve being kicked out of a nightclub. Jack, meanwhile, tells the father of the victim.

Jimmy decides to tell absolutely everything to Gibbs. Literally, everything.

Naturally, Gibbs is angry that he’s been lied to but it’s clear he’s not going to fire Jimmy (or even arrest him) just yet. Gibbs does get the address of the dry cleaner, though, and pays a visit with the team only to find out the dry cleaner has been stabbed.

Uh oh!

Could Stevie be involved?

While in for questioning, Ed tries to keep his son out of it but it’s soon clear that Stevie could have been the one to kill Peter. With Jimmy pointing out that Stevie has always been bailed out, Ed finally shares that Stevie started with the big debt.

That leads to Ed singing like a canary, which links to a guy kicked out of the club. That guy is Kenny, who happens to be the son of a Singapore tech giant, Henry Deng. Henry happened to be the one who gave Peter the money for his first dry cleaning businesses, so it’s not surprising Kenny turned to Peter for help to cover up the crime.

However, Kenny is missing and Henry has canceled credit cards. That means it isn’t going to be easy to track Kenny, so they head to a high-stakes poker game. The problem there is that everyone waiting is owed money and willing to kill Kenny — Kenny hasn’t shown up.

Henry agrees to speak to NCIS about his son but doesn’t offer any answers. However, Ed gets a chance to talk to Henry, sharing that the only thing worse than losing a child is having that child vanish. Pleading to the father, it works and NCIS manage to get to the boat Kenny was going to use to escape, saving Stevie in the process.

Is Ducky permanently leaving NCIS?

The biggest worry of the night was a conversation between Ducky and DiNozzo Sr, a conversation that felt more like David McCallum speaking. Ducky shares how he thinks the autopsy on Peter may be the last, as he thinks about retiring. After all, the way Jimmy reacted around him made it clear that he wasn’t needed.

Fortunately, Jimmy overhears the conversation and sets Ducky right. However, it’s clear that Ducky has made up his mind. The episode ends with Ducky announcing that his future will not involve NCIS and it feels like McCallum has decided his future won’t involve NCIS.

dark. Next. NCIS Season 16, Episode 15 recap

What did you think of the ending? What did you think about Jimmy’s actions throughout the episode? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

NCIS airs Tuesdays at 8/7c on CBS.