According to some NCIS fans, Gibbs wasn’t always the strict, no-nonsense leader he is today. In the early seasons, he used to smile more, and joke with DiNozzo, and generally was happier.
Now, it seems like he’s overly hard on his team, is more stoic, and doesn’t seem to have fun anymore. So, what happened to him? What shifted so drastically from the first two seasons that Gibbs’ character almost completely changed?
One user on Reddit thought maybe the writers hadn’t developed Gibbs’ backstory yet, and that’s why he was more laidback.
Others thought more dramatically; another user thought it was the results of Kate Todd’s death that caused Gibbs to change. “It seems he changes after Kate’s death, during seasons 3 and 4 he seems to be really strict compared to the other seasons,” wrote the user.
Another commented, “I think he became more strict because he thought it’d keep them alive. Also not being emotionally attached could help in some situations.”
The commenters make good points, but Gibbs is emotionally attached whether he wants to admit it or not. He obviously loves his team and respects them. Because of this, he’s hard on them, in order to keep them alive. He doesn’t want a repeat of Kate Todd’s fate.
But, according to Looper, that first commenter got it pretty much on the nose; Gibbs’ character wasn’t fully fleshed out in the early days, so he was much different in seasons 1 and 2. After Kate died, there was a reason for him to change, but also his backstory was cemented in the writers’ room.
‘NCIS’: Gibbs vs. Alden Parker
In the most recent NCIS episode, FBI agent Alden Parker went looking for Gibbs, possibly to arrest him. But Gibbs, of course, was one step ahead.
In the episode 4 synopsis, we know Gibbs and McGee are going to Alaska so research the company who hired the killer. After taking things a bit too far in previous scenes, Parker is now on the hunt for Gibbs to take him in.
An NCIS sneak peek shows us that Parker plans to raid Gibbs’ house, but Gibbs is too fast; his house is already packed up and he’s on his way to Alaska. Parker has nothing.
“Gibbs has managed to avoid paying the price for his actions,” says a voice-over in the sneak-peek, “That ends today.” A little too ominous for my taste. Who knows what will happen to Gibbs when he gets back? Will Alden Parker and the FBI be there waiting for him with open handcuffs? Or will they chase him to Alaska? Or just wait him out? Will Gibbs even make it back to D.C.?
So many questions, so little screen time to answer them. Fans will have to wait until next Monday at 9 on CBS to find out if any of those questions are answered.