Well, things are a-changin' on NCIS and not in an expected way.

Bishop left, and Gibbs's status remained up in the air on NCIS Season 18 Episode 16.

I guess now we know why Jessica suddenly appeared on the scene on NCIS Season 18 Episode 15.

She wasn't a replacement for Gibbs but Bishop.

That makes a whole lot more sense since it's an even swap, female agent for female agent.

When Mark Harmon's contract gets worked out, Gibbs can come back as the team's leader if Harmon signs full time or continue as a private investigator if it's a part-time deal. 

As this episode proves, Gibbs has never really been gone, as everyone keeps dropping in to pick his brain. It's not like he's going anywhere, especially now that he's got to start over building his boat.

All signs point to the latter deal, especially the boat's name, Rule 91. "If you're going to walk away, don't look back" is certainly a portent. 

Will Harmon starring in NCIS: Emeritus work? I don't see how. But then, this wouldn't be the last series to limp to an end after a long run.

Katrina Law (Jessica) got to experience that once before on Hawaii Five-0.

This had two necessary elements of a well-constructed season finale: a shocking exit and a cliffhanger, although Gibbs swimming away lessened the impact of that.

The case of the week was fairly lame, but it was secondary to everything else that was happening.

Its only purpose was to facilitate Ellie's departure and to show the new trio in something resembling action.

If you think about it, Bishop's leaving has been in the works for a long time, as far back as NCIS Season 17 Episode 10, when Odette offered specialized training to her.

Since then, it has been hinted, especially by Palmer and Kasie, that Ellie has been evolving, that she's doing something special in her spare time.

Likely, that's why she and Torres never became a couple despite an annoying amount of hinting devoted to that possibility.

It was simple to chalk that up to Bishop deciding she was unlucky at love, with a cheating ex-husband and an assassinated lover.

Apparently, she finally told Nick nothing would happen between them during their elevator talk on NCIS Season 18 Episode 14.

Breadcrumbs were dropped throughout this episode about the new, improved Ellie, starting with that shooting slide in the opening scene.

Then those run-of-the-mill gunrunners just happening to have a file implicating her didn't add up.

Her confessing to actually leaking a file about a program she disagreed with, while totally out of character, certainly gave her an easy out from NCIS.

Her conversation with Gibbs spelled out everything, especially all the talk about the significance of Rule 91. Gibbs saw her exodus coming. And since he was already on the outside, how critical could he be, anyway?

That wasn't Bishop looking for a reason to stay. Things were already in motion for her leaving, so that wasn't going to happen. That was just her bizarre way of saying goodbye. At least Gibbs got a couple of farewells.

McGee didn't really. Instead, Gibbs had to explain to him that that ship had sailed and there was no pulling Ellie back. 

Torres wouldn't have gotten that goodbye kiss if he hadn't shown off his detective skills and tracked her down at Odette's house.

Maybe it's still premature but let's assess Eleanor Bishop's contribution to NCIS over seven seasons. She wasn't Ziva. But neither was Kate, so we shouldn't hold that against her.

She started as a computer nerd but grew into a well-rounded agent who more than held her own. She grew to the point where a shadowy spy agency poached her.

Bishop will be missed, although not as much as a part-time Gibbs.

How will the new lineup of McGee, Torres, and Knight work out? We got far too small a sampling this episode to make any assessment.

Jessica was eager and willing to do the grunt work, as any newbie should be. Ability-wise, I think she comes in ahead of where Bishop was when she started. She gives the squad someone with negotiating skills, something all the males lack.

I wonder what Gibbs will think of Knight.

Yeah, let's circle back to the show's actual star. Gibbs found a way to stave off boredom, attempting to stay a step ahead of a serial killer.

That, and trying to keep another headstrong woman alive.

Marcie is a great foil for Gibbs since she's someone who refuses to take no for an answer. Does that remind you of anyone?

Gibbs didn't even seem to realize that Marcie expected him to continue investigating like she was.

Instead, Gibbs finally finished his boat. See what you can do with a little spare time? But how, pray tell, did he ever get that boat out of his basement?

In a sign of the Apocalypse, Gibbs made friends with technology, long enough to uncover bugs in both his and Marcie's homes. Who planted them, and how were questions that remain unanswered.

It was heartbreaking to see him happily racing along in his boat only to have it blow up.

To review Bishop's career, watch NCIS online.

Did you see Ellie's departure coming?

Will her leaving make Torres even moodier?

Will Gibbs be back at NCIS: yes or no?

Comment below.

source https://www.tvfanatic.com/2021/05/ncis-season-18-episode-16-review-rule-91/


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