The future of NCIS agency director "Leon Vance" (Rocky Carroll) was uncertain when his wife passed away and he took a leave of absence from the unit. In tonight's episode, the former director decides it's time to make his return, but not in the capacity he once held.
When Vance discovers a document that his wife had been hiding from him, he is set on path of confusion and anger that influences his decision to come back to the NCIS headquarters. However, he doesn't return to his prior position as director.
"It's where he came from. He was a field agent, so getting back into that now and getting back into it in a more blue-collar manner has been a stretch for not only Rocky to play but also something different than he's been doing here," said Mark Harmon ("Leroy Gibbs"). "...Because it's different for him to play it, it becomes different for us to react against it."
As Vance's return seems inspired by his discovery of the document that he discovered that his wife been hiding from him, his motive to go back to work seems an impulsive decision, which questions his mental state.
"There's also some concern from us as to whether or not he's in a mental place where he can be capable as an investigator with us," Sean Murray ("Timothy McGee") assessed.
While the rest of the NCIS team is glad to have him back at work, they have never worked with him in the field, which makes an interesting alteration of the dynamics of the work environment.
"This is a totally different thing: from director to being on the field," noted Cote de Pablo ("Ziva David"). "It's actually an interesting episode because we've never seen him do that, first of all. We see him go through his own little battles as far as emotions go and what he's going through."
Check out the sneak peek of Vance's return in the video above, and watch the full episode of NCIS tonight at 8 p.m. on CBS.