‘NCIS’: One Death Devastated Gibbs Most of All

by Shelby Scott

The transition between “NCIS” season nine and 10 is one of the most memorable of the series. Longtime fans of the show will recall season nine concluded when the NCIS agency was bombed by a terrorist. The surprise attack preceded an even more heartbreaking scene as beloved character, Dr. Donald “Ducky” Mallard, suffered a heart attack. However, it’s during one season 10 episode that one death devastated Special Agent Gibbs most of all.

Looper reminds us that season 10 saw Dr. Mallard‘s successful recovery as well as the reconstruction of NCIS. However, the season also boasted a handful of memorable episodes and storylines, Gibbs and FBI Agent Tobias Fornell’s ex-wife Diane even joining the two men on an inter-agency investigation.

However, it isn’t until Gibbs attends dinner at Jackie and Director Leon Vance’s home that real tragedy strikes.

‘NCIS’ Kills Off Two Dynamic Characters

Gibbs, accompanied by Ziva David’s father and Mossad Director Eli David and Ziva David herself, join Vance and Jackie for dinner at their home one evening. After everyone has sat down to eat, the group suffers a drive-by shooting. Once the chaos of gunfire simmers, viewers quickly learn that both Jackie Vance and Eli David are dead.

“NCIS” fans mourned Jackie Vance’s death alongside Leon, however, it’s Special Agent Gibbs that was truly devastated. Longtime fans will recall that Gibbs’ first wife and love Shannon and only daughter Kelly died in a similar manner.

In reviewing the episode, Ziva sobbed over her father’s dead body while Gibbs awaited news on Jackie’s condition in a hospital waiting room. Looper highlights the tears brimming in Gibbs’ eyes as Vance suffers the same loss he did so many years ago.

Jackie’s Death Leads to Gibbs’ Arrest

Gibbs has always worked both within and outside of the law when it involves matters of personal interest. And this time, that involvement sees the “NCIS” agent gets arrested following the death of Jackie Vance. In efforts to avenge Jackie’s murder and Leon’s loss, Gibbs loses his temper with primary suspect, Mossad Deputy Director Ilan Bodnar.

During an interrogation, his anger overwhelms him. Gibbs shoves Bodnar against the wall, a show of force the agent has used on multiple occasions. Although never previously with this kind of personal involvement.

In the end, we learn that Bodnar did in fact hire the hit on Eli David. Sadly, Jackie Vance‘s death was simply a casualty of that order.

As Gibbs becomes much too close to the investigation, the Department of Homeland Security orders the special agent to, basically, back off. Always one to follow his gut, Gibbs disregards the order, later getting arrested for obstruction of justice.

Nevertheless, Vance, Ziva, and the rest of the team stand behind Gibbs, the “NCIS” director hiring a reputable attorney for the beloved special agent.

As we know, Gibbs gets off the hook, though Jackie’s death definitely affects the “NCIS” agent in a way fans hadn’t seen previously.