Category Archives: 4×09 – The Gold Standard

The Gold Standard (4×09) Review by Phillydi

The Gold Standard (4×09)

WRITTEN BY: Joseph C. Wilson
DIRECTED BY: Tony Wharmby

Welcome back Joe Wilson!  It’s about time!  This is Joe’s first script of the new season and we couldn’t be more delighted.  Teaming up with Director Tony Wharmby (Lange, H.), this dynamic duo promises more than its share of excitement and explosive moments.  The team is off to investigate another terrorist act which can have dire effects on the U.S. Economy.  This time we get to explore Sam’s aversion to clowns more closely and watch Kensi as she partners up with Granger! (Oh, no, no!).

The show begins with a violent gold heist and a vintage Joe Wilson boom.  The gold was in route from the Federal Reserve to a bank in China for a $70 million dollar interest payment on a loan.  Always fun to watch the usually unflappable Sam Hanna dealing with his own shortcomings when they find a dead clown who was part of the robbery.   The poor man hates clowns which probably comes from some deep routed childhood fear.  Wouldn’t you love to see that one explored in a future episode? This sets the team off in search for other accomplices who may have worked with the criminal.

Meanwhile, Kensi shakes off her temporary partner, Granger and is on her own (seems strange without Deeks, doesn’t it?) trying to get more information from one of the guards who was injured during the attack.  The amnesia was a nice touch.  Now all the criminals are being picked off one by one leaving only one suspect.  The team is hot on his trail as well but finds him dead trying to escape with all the loot!  Case solved?  This was just too easy!  Callen knows there is more here than meets the eye and he’s not buying how the circumstances all played out.  The gold was left behind because it was bogus.  The felons were melting the real gold down to make fake gold out of tungsten which would multiply their investment on the open market many times over.  In light of this new finding, Hetty knows this economic terrorist attack will compromise the American gold reserve and put Chinese/American relations on the line.

The key is the guy behind the gorilla mask.  There has got to be one clue that they are missing and our tech geeks, Eric and Nell come to the rescue, finding the location that is manufacturing the fake gold bars. The last of the criminals are apprehended by the team which in the end exposes Iranian Nationalists who were the masterminds behind the terrorist attack all along.

So… a very strange episode, don’t you think?  Very subdued, and restrained for the most part.  The episode had the feel of a Series One story in terms of balance.  Deeks definitely brings a lot of stability to the team and you can feel how the members would totter back and forth on this tenuous balance beam.  Very interesting to watch though.  We also see a much more confident Kensi from the one we knew three years ago… some of it coming from age and some from experience, for sure.  But I also feel it comes from her time spent as Deeks’ partner.  She has become a better agent because of Deeks.  Although she can obviously perform her job without him, we really don’t want her to.  They are just too good together and wonderful to watch on screen.

I also think this was a very pivotal episode which had less to do with the story line and more to do with things to come.  The writers and producers are setting up a future story line and asking us to speculate on what may happen in the future which was evident in the scene between Hetty and Granger.  I always enjoy the Lange-Granger tête à tête moments… mostly because Hetty always finds a way to one up the Assistant Director.  But the small talk was a bit disconcerting, I thought.  What has gotten Hetty’s back up regarding Deeks future with the team and what does Granger know that has her so upset?  Is Deeks in danger of losing his NCIS liaison job or is it something more sinister?  Looks like we will have to wait for a future episode to find out.  Damn!

What do you think?  Any speculations?

Show Highlights:

  • I know there are folks out there who have a hard time with the Nell / Eric pairing, but whether there is a budding love affair looming or not, I enjoy watching the two of them together.  It may be too saccharin for some, but they got my vote for most promising couple since it doesn’t look like Densi is going anyplace soon.  Young geek love.  Don’t ask don’t tell?  Ah, come on… let’s get on with it!
  • The award for the most awkward moment goes to the scene with the guy in the costume shop.  If Deeks had been a fly on the wall, he would have loved it.
  • Enjoyed Eric’s psychological profiling by costume choice rambling.
  • Kensi giving her definition of a booty call to Sam and Callen was hysterical!  “I’m gonna shut up now.”
  • Enough with the smelting, Eric!

Best Lines From the Show:

  • Granger:  You and I could use some quality time.  Kensi:  Awesome.
  • Eric:  Do snakes like being petted?  This just took a really weird turn, didn’t it?
  • Sam:  Where’s she hiding the camera?  Callen:  Where she will have his full attention.  Kensi:   You know I can hear you, right?
  • Remo:  Look, honey.  Callen:  Shouldn’t have said that.  Sam:  Big mistake.  Kensi:  Excuse me!?
  • Sam:  I had him.  Callen:  Of course you did.  Kensi: Obviously.  Sam:  Whatever!

Bromance Moments: 

  • How much did you enjoy Sam and Callen gesturing behind Granger’s back when he was talking to Kensi.  Priceless!
  • Sam:  I hate clowns.  Callen:  Yep, not nearly as funny when they’re dead?
  • Callen:  You know what I’m gonna do?  I’m  going to buy you a yacht so you can come visit me.
  • Sam:  Make it a private jet and I just might.
  • Callen:  You would buy a jet?
  • Sam:  No, I’m gonna make you buy me a jet… and open up an auto body shop.
  • Callen:  70 million dollars and you’re gonna become a mechanic?
  • Sam:  Auto-science specialist.  It’s a calling.  Open a place where people can go without being ripped off.
  • Callen:  No need for cars on the island.
  • Sam:  What, you and Gillian going to build a bike out of coconuts?

Non-Densi Moments:

  • Poor Kensi!  It’s bad enough that Deeks stiffed her and didn’t pick her up for work but now she is teaming up with Granger on a mission!  “I would love to learn the ropes from a grizzled veteran like yourself.”  Kensi’s looking a bit pale around the gills!
  • What was that strange conversation with Granger and Kensi in terms of her future all about?  That was creepy!  Please don’t tell me he’s trying to step into Deeks’ shoes because I think I will throw up!

Next week we get to have some holiday fun when we watch the team spend Christmas away from home.  Come back again to NCISLA Magazine for all the fun!

The Gold Standard (4×09) Ratings



NCIS: LOS ANGELES swept its time period in viewers and key demos, NCIS was the night’s top program in viewers and placed first in its time period in adults 25-54 (tie with “The Voice”) and VEGAS was first in viewers, according to Nielsen preliminary live plus same day ratings for Dec. 11. CBS placed first on the night in viewers and adults 25-54.

NCIS: LOS ANGELES was first in households (9.6/15), viewers (14.97m), adults 25-54 (3.8/09) and adults 18-49 (2.6/07).