“, we got a brief taste of the new spin-off series planned to take over the airwaves next fall. It’s got all the qualities for a hit show (beefy black guy, gorgeous lead character, sassy female boss, neurotic sidekicks, etc) but does it have the staying power? If tonight’s show is any indication, it’s going to be even better than NCIS or, dare I say it, even JAG!

When we last left Callen, he was pretending to be a dead terrorist to confront the big bad terrorists. Only, it turns out to be Ziva’s mysterious friend Michael. And he’s not exactly a terrorist. He works for the Israeli government and is on a mission to find a terrorist cell… yeah, you guessed it, the same terrorists NCIS is looking for. He also lets it be known that he and Ziva are well acquainted. Needless to say, this doesn’t sit well with DiNozzo.

Michael is apparently way ahead in the investigation. He knows pretty much all the terrorists involved, but he only spills the name of the guy he already killed. Callen and Sam Cool-J head off to dead guy’s apartment to look for clues. Waiting for them is a pretty dead guy and no clues. Except for when dead guy’s girlfriend shows up. Callen, being all suave and whatnot, convinces her to take him to one of dead guy’s terrorist friends.

While Gibbs is keeping an eye on Michael, Boss Lady Macy explains part of her shady past with Gibbs. Apparently at one point, she investigated Jethro for murder. Well, that would put a damper on any relationship. The chase is on when Gibbs finds out that Michael’s a wanted man. Instead of finding Michael in his hotel room, they find another dead guy.

Meanwhile, McGee and his fellow computer nerd have used the giant iPhone to get a direct camera feed inside the auto body shop where the dead guy’s friends hang out. They take the opportunity to identify all the guys milling about. But the only problem is they can’t seem to figure out who the ring leader is. Once again, everyone suspects Ziva.

The auto shop guys are getting impatient and demand that Callen (Liam) get the delivery within the hour. While they wait, Callen and Shakira get chummy. She shows off a few pictures of her boyfriend and brother… only it seems there’s been a case of mistaken identity. The dead guy from earlier is actually the brother and the boyfriend is actually Michael. He’s such a player.

So now that they’ve figured out that Michael is in charge of this whole shindig, Sam gets the go-ahead to bust in a pop some caps in their butts. They take the terrorists down in one swoop. Gotta say, I never much liked LL before now. But he’s pretty awesome. Then comes the Wild West showdown between Gibbs and Michael. Gibbs pretty much tells him to take a hike. Michael seems to comply. Or does he?

Before heading back to the east coast, Gibbs finds out some juicy info from the younger Dr. Phil. Turns out, Boss Lady Macy had buried some incriminating evidence against Jethro all those years ago. One head nod of mutual respect later, all is forgiven. In D.C., Abby is filling DiNozzo in on Michael’s flight plans. It seems he didn’t actually fly back to the Middle East. He actually high-tailed it back to Ziva’s bed. That hussy!

And as if that weren’t enough of a cliffhanger ending for you, Chris O’Donnell was gunned down in the streets of Venice Beach. We know he doesn’t die or anything (because his contract with CBS says to the contrary) but it still had me on the edge of my seat. Well played, sir.

Is Ziva a dirty liar? What is she planning? And is anyone actually going to watch this spin-off?

Posted by:Brandon Millman