Even though NCIS is good in its natural state, solving murders of Navy personnel linearly, I like the occasional change of pace when the writers go out of their comfort zone and try something new. “Out of the Frying Pan…” is exactly that kind of episode, with a suspect in an interrogation room and all the forensics done at the beginning of the episode.
What made the interrogation work Cameron Monaghan and his disarmingly young look, as well as his demeanor in the interrogation room. I’ve been watching Cameron Monaghan on the American adaptation of Shameless, and he’s portrayed as an early high schooler, certainly not 18, so I was thrown off quickly. But in real life, he is indeed 17, only 1 year younger than his fictional age, even though he looks much younger. The plot twists were fairly predictable, but Gibbs putting his faith behind the kid was really great.
Underneath the tale of abandonment and drugs is the continuing conflict between Gibbs and an increasingly agitated Vance, who actually slams the axe into the interrogation table. Gibbs doesn’t say anything yet, but he’s keeping a close eye on Vance. It’ll be interesting to see how this is resolved.
Agent Barrett doesn’t show up in the episode, but does speak briefly on the phone with Vance and we learn that she locks her desk unlike everyone else. As for everyone else, they hardly do anything, although Tony does get his fair share of interrogating at the beginning of the episode.