Some “NCIS” fans may have forgotten about a fascinating story arc on the popular drama series. Surprisingly, the plot revolves entirely around Gibbs’ struggle with severe memory loss.
Mark Harmon is also a familiar face to “NCIS” viewers. He played Gibbs in the CBS series for about 20 years before officially retiring at the start of this season. Now, we can’t help but reflect on some of our favorite, and not-so-favorite, Gibbs moments from his 19-year career.
We got a good sense of the original core group of agents and their lives during the early seasons. Gibbs has a particularly difficult time in the Season 3 finale, “Hiatus,” which is split into two parts.
The team is looking into a potential threat that an undercover informant warned them about. An expl0sion occurred on a Marine Assault Ship. Unfortunately, Gibbs was severely injured by the att4ck and went into a coma. While he is in the hospital, Gibbs’ team is attempting to apprehend the assailant without their fearless leader.
This is possibly one of the episodes in which we got closer to Gibbs and learned more about his brain’s inner workings. This is due to the fact that writers had viewers relive parts of his past while he was unconscious. We watch as Gibbs copes with the devastating loss of his wife and daughter. These two losses have had a significant impact on Gibbs throughout his life. We also watch as he considers suicide and vengeance for these two d3aths.
We also get a glimpse of his life as a Marine and a near-d3ath experience during Desert Storm before he finally wakes up. “He’s in a coma that he doesn’t want to be in,” his doctor observes.
He’s awake, but he can’t remember anything after 1991 at first. Things start to come back into focus for him when he sees his old mentor, Mike Franks, as well as his current teammate, Ziva David.
Gibbs’ body forced him to go down that very painful memory lane, on top of memory loss and agonizing injuries. It’s one of the most heartbreaking scenes in his character’s life.
Another Heartbreaking Gibbs Moment on ‘NCIS’
Throughout the course of “NCIS,” we’ve gotten several glimpses into Gibbs’ heartbreaking past.
“The Arizona” from Season 17 is one of these episodes. Christopher Lloyd, a well-known guest star, appears in this episode as a Navy veteran. He is desperate to be buried alongside his fellow Pearl Harbor survivors, but proving his identity as a veteran is proving difficult.
Gibbs presses the 95-year-old man to recall that terrifying day in 1941 in order to see if he’s telling the truth. It’s obvious that the man is telling the truth. Gibbs clearly understands this, as evidenced by his unforgettable glassy eyes as he looks over at Lloyd’s character.
Gibbs ends up having an emotional heart-to-heart with Agent McGee about his time in Kuwait. “You come home and you’re like half a person,” he says angrily to McGee.
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