NCIS director Leroy Jethro Gibbs isn’t known for being a nice guy. He has a tendency to say what he thinks, and he does not smile easily. Gibbs, on the other hand, is completely out of character in NCIS Season 3, Episode 1. He’s actually nice to his team and appears to care more about their needs. The following is Showbiz Cheat Sheet’s take on Gibbs’ personality shift.
What happens before Gibbs starts acting nice?
A lot happens in the season 2 finale before we see the nice version of Gibbs in the season 3 premiere. Agent Kate Todd is tragically shot and k1ll3d. The first bullet lodges in her vest, but the second one strikes her in the head. Gibbs and DiNozzo have the unfortunate experience of witnessing her d3ath. Neither of them ever seems to fully recover from her d3ath.
After Kate Todd’s d3ath, Gibbs becomes (temporarily) nicer.
Gibbs’ personality abruptly shifts as a result of Kate’s murd3r. He becomes very nice as a result of the sh0ck and stress of this event. When Gibbs returns to the office, he sits at his desk, his gaze fixed on Kate’s empty chair. Then Kate’s ghost appears, clearly upset about what has occurred (this is most likely a manifestation of Gibb’s guilty conscience). “Why me, Gibbs?” says Kate’s ghost. Isn’t stopping just one bullet enough for you? Why was it necessary for me to take two? “How come I d1ed instead of you?” “I don’t know,” Gibbs says haltingly.
When DiNozzo and McGee arrive, Gibbs becomes much nicer. It’s raining outside, but DiNozzo tells Gibbs he’ll do more research on the roof. DiNozzo braces himself for a “Gibbs head slap” as Gibbs approaches. Instead of slapping DiNozzo on the head, Gibbs instructs him to change into dry clothes first. “Tony, you’re drenched,” Gibbs says. “Go put on some dry clothes.” DiNozzo is taken aback and perplexed by Gibbs’ actions.
Furthermore, Gibbs rarely gets coffee for anyone, but this time he offers McGee and DiNozzo a cup. “I’m going to get some coffee,” Gibbs says. “Can I get some for you guys?” McGee and DiNozzo exchange surprised glances before declining the unexpected offer. Gibbs also addresses McGee by name rather than probie.
“That’s a first,” DiNozzo says after Gibbs leaves to get coffee. “He called me Tim,” McGee says. McGee thinks it’s nice that Gibbs is nice to them, but DiNozzo isn’t so sure. “Nice? I’m not looking for nice. If he’s nice, he’s not Gibbs.” Gibbs is always kind, according to Abby, but DiNozzo hasn’t had the same experience. During a conversation in Abby’s lab, he mentions that things at the office seem strange to him because Gibbs is nice. “Gibbs is always nice,” Abby says. “Perhaps to you and Ducky,” DiNozzo says. “He growls at me and smacks me on the head.”
DiNozzo copes poorly with Kate’s d3ath.
DiNozzo, on the other hand, becomes extremely cruel. He spends about three minutes venting his rage on McGee. He slaps McGee on the back of the head and becomes sarcastic. DiNozzo misses the mean Gibbs, so he tries to say and do things that will irritate him. He is successful, and Gibbs eventually returns to his old self, complete with head slap.