NCIS (2003– )
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The Good Son 

While on liberty in Baltimore, Maryland, a boatswain's mate second-class dies of a stab wound; Gibbs and company investigate; the prime suspect is a brother-in-law of Vance. The team persist, Abby solves the case, and they nab the bad guy.


Terrence O'Hara


Donald P. Bellisario (created by), Don McGill (created by) | 2 more credits »

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Mark Harmon ... Leroy Jethro Gibbs
Michael Weatherly ... Anthony DiNozzo
Cote de Pablo ... Ziva David
Pauley Perrette ... Abby Sciuto
Sean Murray ... Timothy McGee
Rocky Carroll ... Leon Vance
David McCallum ... Donald Mallard
Jocko Sims ... Michael Thomas
Don Stark ... Marty Fiero
Eden Riegel ... Meredith Bilson
Aaron Perilo ... Navy Petty Officer Third Class Brian Smith
Patrick Cohen ... Navy Petty Officer Third Class Dan Garscott
Lawrence Adimora ... Navy Seaman Jacob Pierway
Richard Alan Reid ... Navy Seaman Robert Epplund (as Richard Reid)
Paula Newsome ... Jackie Vance


While on liberty in Baltimore, Maryland, two sailors of the US Navy find the body of a buddy, a boatswain's mate second-class, who died from a stab wound; the Baltimore PD soon finds a suspect, who is not only a mechanic at a nearby automotive shop but also a brother-in-law of Vance, the director of the NCIS; Gibbs and company investigate. McGee learns that a second sailor failed to return from liberty; Tony and Ziva meet another shipmate; Ducky says that the victim took part in a fight several hours before he died; Tony and Ziva meet also a girlfriend and yet another shipmate. McGee finds a lie, Gibbs pursues it, and Vance and Gibbs have a chat; Vance's wife shows much anger, but she gets over it. Abby produces good stuff, McGee gets a good tip, then Gibbs, Tony, and Ziva make a good bust. Abby solves the case, then Vance gets a confession, and Gibbs and Tony take the bad guy into custody. Vance learns how to play a game. Written by DocRushing

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


TV-PG | See all certifications »






Release Date:

27 March 2012 (USA) See more »

Filming Locations:

Santa Clarita, California, USA

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

16:9 HD
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


The victim is supposedly a sailor from a fictitious destroyer "DD-350 Hagen". The actual DD-350 was the destroyer USS Hull, launched in January 1934 and foundered in a storm December 18, 1944. There has never been a USS Hagen, and the ship shown in the establishing shot before they interview the victim's shipmates is in fact not a destroyer but the battleship USS New Jersey (BB-62), now a museum ship in Camden, New Jersey. See more »


They show an aerial shot of the Philadelphia Ship Yard. In the episode they aren't anywhere near Philly. See more »


NCIS Theme
Performed by Numeriklab
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User Reviews

work place inequity
8 December 2017 | by skipperkdSee all my reviews

Director Vance allowed himself to get involved in the investigation, even though his brother-in-law Michael was a suspect (as the synopsis states). Vance tried to steer Gibbs away from his family member. Blatantly told him to back off Michael. It clearly annoyed Gibbs. It annoyed me, also, because Vance was adamant that Tony couldn't get involved when his dad was a suspect, in Sins of the Father, this season. Cited conflict of interest. So...Vance should not have been allowed to involve himself in this investigation. Conflict of interest. Against protocol.

In two earlier episodes McGee got preferential treatment when a family member was in the hot seat. First, when his sister Sarah was a prime suspect and in another episode, when his grandmother was obstructing the investigating. See details below:

McGee's sister Sarah was treated preferentially in TWISTED SISTER (season 4, 2006). Sarah had blood on her hands matching the victim and a video showed her at the scene of his death. She claimed to have blacked out. McGee harbored his sister Sarah, did not turn her over to NCIS asap, and even allowed her to run. He only let NCIS get involved when he had no option. Even then, she was never handcuffed by anyone at NCIS and never kept in overnight detention.

But McGee immediately handcuffed DiNozzo Sr, and NCIS expected Senior to stay overnight at a prison/ detention center or wear a GPS anklet. Yet Vance insisted in taking his brother-in-law to his own cozy home. No ankle bracelet. No GPS.

McGee played a role in solving his sister's case. Not so for Tony. He wasn't allowed to help at all. This is correct and proper procedure, but the imbalance between episodes struck me.

Vance is the NCIS director. McGee is the son of an admiral. DiNozzo is treated differently when his family member is a suspect. These inequities were never discussed in the episodes.

Another bothersome episode: In this same 9th season, in THE PENELOPE PAPERS, McGee's grandmother clearly kept secrets from NCIS. McGee shouldn't have been allowed to interview or interrogate her, given their family relationship. But he did so, with Gibb's approval. Several times.

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