Let’s rewatch a key scene from the NCIS finale. In hindsight, you want to ask both Gibbs and Bishop what they were really talking about.
You probably remember the scene well. It came pretty early in the NCIS season finale, May 25. The NSA revealed that Ellie Bishop (Emily Wickersham) leaked classified information. Vance told Bishop to go home and let them investigate and prove her innocent.
Bishop leaves the NCIS office. And rather than head home, she goes to Gibbs’ house. More specifically, Bishop makes a beeline for Gibbs’ basement. Her talking to her boss about such a staggering accusation makes a whole lot of sense. However, Bishop directs the conversation to another topic. And since we now know how the finale ended, we’re left wondering about so much more.
Like, did Gibbs (Mark Harmon) already know Bishop was headed deep undercover? Did Bishop’s new assignment — and new handler — have anything to do with why Gibbs’ boat blew up as we see him swimming away?
Here’s the clip. Come back on the other side to discuss.
As the NCIS scene begins, Bishop asks Gibbs about Rule 91. He swats away her question and says it’s the rule that comes after 90. We know that in another conversation later in the episode, Gibbs finally tells Bishop that when you finally decide to walk away, don’t look back. That’s rule 91. In hindsight, it’s curious why Gibbs didn’t tell her the rule right then in his basement.
Bishop tells Gibbs she’s “pissed.” Gibbs looks stunned when she takes her drink and points at him. She’s directing her ire at her NCIS boss and mentor.
She tells him “we’re supposed to be a team, Gibbs, and you have kept us all in the dark.”
Gibbs acts like he’s the one in the dark. So Bishop tells him “we have no clue if or when you’re even coming back.”
And Gibbs points out it’s above his NCIS pay grade, that Vance makes the call to lift his suspension. Bishop says he’s right, “but we do decide when we cut bait and move on.” Then she tells him that Vance made it clear to Gibbs that all he had to do was “show just a little remorse.”
Gibbs initially thinks she’s talking about him apologizing to the “dog killer” he assaulted. She says “not him. Us.” She tells him “I want you to say something. And Gibbs, I want you to stop hiding.”
Then Gibbs asks her “what is this about, really, Bishop, because you picked a helluva time in your life to come at me.” (Gibbs makes a great point. Bishop is facing prison time, with her NCIS career going up in flames).
Bishop responds with something intriguing. “There’s a lot in my life that you don’t know.” And she looks at Gibbs and says “you’re not ever coming back, are you?” Bishop puts down her drink and leaves. A stunned Gibbs picks up the cocktail. And scene.
Now, skip ahead to the NCIS ending, when Gibbs officially tells Bishop about Rule 91 and basically gives her his approval to leave. Following that, there’s the scene with Torres confronting Bishop about her new undercover job. Then Gibbs’ boat explodes. Stay tuned. Season 19 will be big.