Let's all give a round of applause to Dwayne Pride, winner of the Hypocrite of the Month award! Just last week, he was warning Brody about personal involvement in a case, and now, here he was, being infinitely worse!
On NCIS: New Orleans Season 2 Episode 19, Laurel was attacked while jogging, leading Pride down the rabbit hole and seeing the return of those Militia numbskulls from earlier in the season. You remember, the idiots who put the bounty on the head of a federal agent?
Once again, they proved their lack of intelligence by attacking Laurel. The biggest, most ridiculous thing about this is that there was no compelling reason to do that!
Ostensibly, the point was to distract the team from looking into the disappearance of Petty Officer Peale and the missing hard drives, but it wasn't like the NCIS team would have connected him to a bunch of Navy SEALs getting secret awards. Certainly not in time to stop the Militia's intended attack.
So the Militia's attempt to misdirect actually led the team right to them, resulting in the arrest of four, the death of the two, the transfer of Zed to federal Super-max prison, the loss of tens of thousands of dollars in custom, high-end surveillance equipment plus a huge arsenal of weapons, and the utter failure of the whole plan.
Of course, the Militia seems insanely fixated on Pride, and they've demonstrated on mulitiple occasions their general lack of intelligence and long-term planning.
But let's get back to Pride and his breathtaking hypocrisy. Were we as viewers supposed to think he was doing the right thing with his, shall we say, hot-headed behavior? Looking after your family is well and good, but there's being protective and then there's being stupid.
Loretta had it absolutely right in this remark:
Loretta: You're perfectly able to look after yourself normally, but when things get personal, I can't help but worry about your judgment.
Loretta: That you may end up on the wrong side of my autopsy table.
It's a longstanding cliche for a law enforcement officers on television to investigate crimes against themselves or love ones, making grand proclamations like, "It's personal!" or "This is family!", but that's exactly why in real life that sort of thing is strictly verboten. It's impossible to think clearly under such circumstances, hence his warning to Brody last week.
Special Agent Hardy played the role Pride was in there, but she was almost a non-entity here, given how little Pride heeded her despite their history. She might as well have been talking to a brick wall, and that totally undermined her as a character.
Part of me really, really wished that Pride had gotten some sort of comeuppance for his bull-headed hijacking of the investigation.
What I found far more compelling (and indeed believable) was Laurel's personal wrestling with the reality that she may very well have killed someone. Even though it was a clear-cut case of self-defense, it's not something that she could just accept and move on.
I enjoyed Laurel bonding with Sonja Percy at the safe house, as well as Laurel's complicated feelings regarding the whole situation and the full comprehension of how dangerous her father's job is.
Dad! How many people want you dead?!Laurel Pride
I also liked that final interview with Zed, when they informed him that the plan had failed and he would now be enjoying the rest of his life in federal Super-max prison. Happy trails, Zed!
A few final notes:
- One clear sign the Militia guys are dumb as a box of rocks: they were planning to attack an awards ceremony for a SEAL team. They were planning to attack a SEAL team.
- You may recognize Kathleen Munroe, who played the just-as-murderous-as-her-clients lawyer, from Haven where she played the real Audrey Parker or CSI: NY, where she was Flack's sister Samantha.
- Speaking of the lawyer, how did she know where to find Laurel at the end of the episode?
- Be sure to check out our NCIS: New Orleans quotes page for a rundown of some of the noteable quotes from this episode.
So, what did you think of "Means to an End"? Did you find the plot compelling or confusing? Did you enjoy the return of the Militia as villains? Were you surprised that the lawyer turned out to kill Laurel at the end? Let us know in the comments section below!
You can always watch NCIS: New Orleans online to relive the drama of this episode. Meanwhile, there's a week-long break before the show returns on Tuesday, April 5, 2016 at 9/8c on CBS with NCIS: New Orleans Season 2 Episode 20, "Second Line."