NCIS Los Angeles Season 8 Episode 17 Review: Queen Pin

One question got answered this episode.

The next extended storyline was unveiled on NCIS: Los Angeles Season 8 Episode 17, and it springs from earlier this season.

A Risky Operation - NCIS: Los Angeles

At the center of it is Asakeem, who the team snatched out of Syria on NCIS: Los Angeles Season 8 Episode 2. It was on that mission that Kensi got seriously injured and started her long road to recovery. 

Everyone seemed concerned about Kensi's state of mind, confronting the man who caused her injuries. But she was fortunately very Zen about it.

Deeks: I'm thinking about Asakeem and the thousand ways I would crush him for what he did to you. Honestly, I can't even imagine how you feel.
Kensi: To be honest with you, I don't feel anything. It's not Asakeem, It's not Sullivan, it's not hundreds of others. I trust this job, and I've got to be OK with it.

That's a very big-girl attitude after almost getting killed on the job.

I was glad to see that Callen and Anna seemed to be getting close again. That's good because she'll force him to get out of his head.

Date Night - NCIS: Los Angeles Season 8 Episode 17

Despite the Joelle fiasco, he now seems willing to give romance another try. And someone in the same field will be able to understand him better, at least in theory.

Of course, there's no fooling Hetty.

Hetty: Why is your bed on the curb?
Callen: I'm just trying to get back to the old me.
Hetty: Looks like you're going to need another one.

Hetty nipped their romantic rendezvous in the bud with a mission. They had to escort Asakeem from an Arizona prison to LA to be debriefed about his former terror group.

I found Asakeem to be annoyingly smug, expecting that his brothers in Allah would rescue him from the infidels. So I was happy Callen and Anna tortured him with some less-than-stellar selections from the "Grease" songbook.

Callen: That's why you don't bring terrorists on a road trip.
Anna: They ruin everything.

It turns out Asakeem was right about someone trying to snatch him. He just was wrong about who.

Under Fire - NCIS: Los Angeles Season 8 Episode 17

I found it amusing that Callen and Anna were assisted during the ambush by the vet restaurant patrons who obviously had carry permits.

They got eventually got Asakeem to LA, but that's not the end of the story, as it seemed there's an organized effort to find the terrorist.

But other than his people, I can't think of who would want Asakeem. Whoever is backing his terror group? The CIA, just because some are still pissed off at NCIS? Following the logic behind this will be interesting.

While Callen and Anna were playing Danny and Sandy, Sam had a much meatier case drop into his lap.

An old contact from his undercover days gave him an intro to a major drug ring, and he certainly ran with it. Although I'm not sure what drugs have to do with NCIS' mission.

It's always enjoyable watching Sam while undercover because he's certainly very good at it. He was being introduced to this ghostly drug lord within hours while others had been trying to catch her for years. I love how he had an entire backstory for Switch.

I must say, however, that he blew up the Switch persona but good, committing fake murder and armed robbery. He won't be able to use that character again.

And I'm still a little surprised that Sam seemed to have a soft spot for King, while he came down hard on Spence. They're both drug runners, so why the difference? Because she's a woman in a male field?

I wasn't surprised that DA Gibson was King's partner. I'm always suspicious of the ambitious white politician that reminds me of Mitt Romney.

At least Kensi and Deeks were able to steal a romantic moment in the surveillance van. One of these episodes, hopefully, this season, they'll have a proper proposal.

And I'm not sure why Nell was even in the field. For all she was allowed to do, she may as well have stayed in Ops.

Hey, at least she and Eric get to go undercover at a couple's retreat next weekend. With all the starts and stops in their relationship, that should be interesting. 

To trace Asakeem's involvement with the squad, watch NCIS: Los Angeles online.

Which case did you enjoy more? Who's after Asakeem? Will they leave Granger in the credits for the remainder of the season? Comment below.

Dale McGarrigle is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.