Identity is the season premiere episode of NCIS: Los Angeles Season 1 and also the 1st episode of the entire NCIS: Los Angeles series.
Having successfully recovered from the near-fatal shooting that took place in the last few seconds of Legend (Part 2) (episode), NCIS Special Agent G. Callen returns to his team whose headquarters have since moved to a new building on the outskirts of Los Angeles. As that happens, the OSP team investigative the murder of a Naval Commander who was kidnapped by a drug cartel and eventually killed in a shootout between the cartel and members of the Los Angeles Police Department with OSP soon learning that the Commander's actions might have jeopardized a highly-classified military operation against various drug cartels in Mexico and also put the life of his young niece in grave danger, forcing the team to race against the clock to find and save the young girl before it's too late but all is not what it seems.
As Los Angeles wakes to another day of sunshine, a CBS news chopper reports the latest traffic on the various motorways around the city but things change when the LAPD- Los Angeles Police Department find themselves in a state of alert as some of their patrol officers go after a blue Tahoe which sped off from a traffic spot.
After the driver and passenger emerge, having stopped, they fire back at the responding LAPD officers, triggering a gunfight that ends with the two men dead.
One LAPD officer approaches the Tahoe and discovers the body of a man instead with it being revealed that the man who's been shot dead is in fact a Commander in the United States Navy.
A while later, NCIS Special Agent G. Callen awakens in his room at an unnamed motel and upon getting his belongings, meet his colleague, fellow NCIS Special Agent Sam Hanna before the two head off to where their unit, the NCIS Office of Special Projects operates with Callen learning that the building they're now was formerly an old water planet administration building, condemned after the Northbridge earthquake which occurred in 1994.
Inside the building, Callen discovers that the place is a hive of activity with various NCIS personnel going back and forth.
He reunites with Operations Manager Henrietta Lange who after Sam has paid to presumably cover the fact that Callen returned to work with expenses unaccounted, something that would have ended up leaving Hetty either out of a job or pocket who informs Callen they need to update his biometrics, new photos for driver's licences, passports, general backstopping, not to speak of documents, credit cards, so forth and wardrobe.
Once they've finished talking to Hetty, Sam and Callen head to the Bullpen where they briefly talk before a whistle courtesy of NCIS Tech Operator Eric Beale interrupts things, Eric informing them that NCIS Director Leon Vance is coming online with Eric even taking a moment to acknowledge the fact Callen's returned.
Meanwhile, NCIS Junior Agent Kensi Blye who's finished a phone call with someone in Portuguese arrives and greets Callen.
As the two share a hug, Kensi remarks she thought Callen had callously abandoned them to join the FBI, something Callen admits once was enough with Callen revealing that Kensi is a Marine brat who regularly spends her weekends driving up to Camp Pendleton.
As the group head upstairs, Callen reunites with OSP Psychologist Nate Getz who wonders about Callen's state with Callen revealing he suffered from aches, pains and insomnia even before he got shot.
Continuing upstairs, Callen then meets the newest member of their team: NCIS Probationary Agent Dominic Vail.
Inside the Ops Centre, a place Callen is stunned at given the amount of technology on display, the group meet Vance who's conference-calling them all the way from his office at the Navy Yard in Washington D.C.
After expressing surprise at Callen's return and vowing they will get the people responsible for nearly killing him, something Callen agrees with, Vance informs the group that the Commander who was found dead at the beginning of the episode or rather was Commander Frank McGuire who worked at the Office at Naval Intelligence with his murder presumably occurred two hours prior. He was kidnapped and murdered during a gunfight with LAPD officers that happened as a result of his kidnappers fleeing a routine traffic stop, prompting LAPD to give chase with Vance even believing McGuire got caught in the crossfire but what has Vance and the higher-ups concerned is the fact that not only were his kidnappers Mexican nationals but that McGuire had knowledge of a coordinated military operation designated "Operation Dakota" which is a plan to strike out against the drug cartels operating on both sides of the Mexican border with Vance giving Callen the task of finding if the operation was compromised.
As soon as Vance has signed off, having sent Eric the file, the OSP witness the footage for themselves, presumably the same footage that LAPD managed to obtain from the CBS news chopper that filmed the entire incident with Ops's monitors displaying the shootout from different points of view.
Eventually, the team learn that the driver died first and that the passenger used his weapon to fire into the car, killing or rather executing Commander McGuire presumably in cold blood.
Callen and Sam then head to where Commander McGuire lived but the two decide to go undercover, knowing that none of the locals are willing to talk to cops or even federal agents.
After suggesting they go undercover as city inspectors, something Callen rejects as he believes no-one talks to city inspectors, he decides to pose as a client looking for a new apartment who Sam the realtor is showing around, Callen having already rejected the scenario where he would have played the realtor and Sam the client as Callen wonders if he would live in this place like this and even voicing his belief he can't even afford a place like this.
Getting into his role, Callen wonders if there's a Jacuzzi with Sam threatening to drown Callen in it.
Once they've reached McGuire's apartment, they burst inside, only to discover too late that someone has gained access to McGuire's answering machine and has succeeded in deleting his messages, reducing the message bank to 0.
Sam believes it looks like someone didn't want them to hear McGuire's messages.
Not to be put off, Callens calls Eric and tells the Operator he needs him to check.
Back in the Ops Centre, Eric tells Callen he'll check McGuire's phone logs, see what they turn up before ending the call while Kensi reveals that McGuire not only graduated top 1 percent from the Naval Academy but that he had a stellar career. She also reveals that McGuire specialized in satellite-image analysis and that he spent time in the San Nicolas Navy Base.
When Eric wonders where that is, Kensi tries to answer, only for Dom to interrupt, revealing it's 75 miles off the coast of LA and that it was discovered by a Spanish explorer, Sebastian Vizcaino and that Vizcaino actually chartered the entire California coast and his ship was called the San Diego which is where the bay gets its name, of course.
Dom then pauses, wondering it it was back in 1602?
Upon looking over at Eric who's stunned at Dom's knowledge and Kensi who is slightly unimpressed, Dom defends himself, informing them he reads a lot which has Eric remarking that reading is good while Kensi gives Dom a small smile and a nod.
Back at McGuire's apartment, Callen and Sam are still searching for any evidence although Callen is distracted by the fact that McGuire has a lot of framed photographs hanging on his wall.
Sam returns in, informing Callen he found this on the coffee table and it was like it mattered, presumably to McGuire.
Callen takes it and notes it had its own place on the wall with the photograph showing McGuire smiling with a young girl who's wearing his commander's hat or cover.
The photo displays the words, "Emma. Fleet week. San Diego" written on the top left side of the photograph with Callen noting McGuire wasn't married.
Upon learning Callen's never received a single birthday card and remarking he'll put a personality in the birthday card he sends Callen this year, even though Callen wants money, Sam opens one of the birthday cards hanging on McGuire's fridge with the sentence, "Happy birthday to my favorite uncle. Love, Emma" written in red and blue marker with the two realizing the young girl in the photo with McGuire is in fact his niece, something they both agree is a mystery solved.
As Callen returns the framed photo to its rightful place on the wall, Sam notes that there's no sign of a struggle and that there are deadbolts on the windows and doors before coming to the conclusion they must have snatched McGuire off the street. He also discovers McGuire's laptop which is encrypted and will be a job for Eric, Sam noting that for a career Navy guy, Commander McGuire wasn't very squared away which has Callen believing McGuire had something else on his mind.
Once they've left the apartment and reached the Challenger to return to Ops, Callen notes that there's no Jacuzzi while Sam wonders is a deal-breaker, something Callen is afraid is with Sam mockingly disappointed he's just lost his commission.
Upon safely storing the laptop in the Challenger's trunk/boot, Sam prepares to head back to Ops but Callen stops after hearing a group of men talking to each other in Spanish with Callen wondering if gardeners are included in the lease?
After a quick nod to one another, the two resume their undercover personas: Sam the realtor and Callen the man searching for a place to live.
Talking to one man in Spanish and then English, Callen portrays Sam or the realtor accompanying him as a shady, devious man while the other man tells Callen the area they're in is very before Callen reveals that McGuire or the Navy guy is dead, having been kidnapped and then murdered, something that leaves the other man who Callen believes might have been the last person to see McGuire surprised.
The man reveals that McGuire was with his friends who drove a blue Tahoe, the same one the LAPD officers were chasing after.
As the two talk some more, Sam looks in the rear-view mirror and realizes a car behind him or rather, a cream-colored car is packed there with the driver taking a keen interest in what's unfolding.
Sam tries to approach the driver, hoping for a chat but upon being made, the driver flees in his car with Sam giving chase although he's forced to stop as the car races off.
Reuniting, Sam tells Callen the car had no plates and it was clean while Callen tells him what he learnt from the gardener: that it wasn't exactly McGuire's first trip and that they picked him up every morning this week, dropping him off three hours with Callen even wondering if it sounds like a kidnapping when McGuire knew the very people responsible for his death.
The team soon regroup back in the Ops Centre and discover that McGuire had his hands tied behind his back with nylon ties and even wore a hood so that he wouldn't get tempted to lift the hood and even get a peak.
Sam realizes the technique used is common in the Middle East before revealing he's used it a few times himself much to everyone's surprise.
He then heads over to the touch screen, bringing up a sign-in log showing the names of various military personnel and the times they logged in to begin work before revealing that McGuire used to get to the office at 8:30, give or ten five or ten minutes but every day this week he was late with Sam even pulling a records log to show his OSP colleagues with one log revealing McGuire got into the office at 11: 18 AM.
Callen reveals the gardener said they picked him up at 7:30 with Kensi stating three hours later, they dropped McGuire back home and he went to work.
Nate believes that there's a lot someone can do in three hours.
"Especially if you have top secret clearance", Kensi replies.
Examining his watch, Callen then calls on Eric, wondering how time they've got?
Eric then reveals that Operation Dakaota against the drug cartels is due to kick off in seven hours and 33 minutes.
Callen wants to know about the call to McGuire's apartment that erased his voice mails with Eric telling Callen he's still working on it.
When Callen asks about fiances, Kensi tells him there's nothing out of the ordinary.
"Travel?", Callen wonders.
"Nothing is his known name or any of his known credit cards", Kensi replies.
Callen wonders about family, relatives with Kensi shaking her head.
Lucky, though, Dom has an answer to that. He reveals that McGuire's parents are deceased and that he's got one sister: Helen McGuire with Dom even revealing that Helen lives in West Hollywood, is divorced and has one kid who is a girl.
"Emma", Callen notes.
When Sam looks over, Callen tells him about the photo at the apartment and her favorite uncle with Sam silently nodding.
Giving not too subtle glances over to Kensi who easily picks up on them, she volunteers to go over to Helen's place and that she'll take their trained expert operational psychologist for back-up while Nate comments he loves field-work before wondering if he gets to carry a gun.
Kensi refuses, stating they're not expecting any trouble from a grieving family.
Despite that, Nate wonders if he can still carry a gun, maybe one of those ankle holsters?
He then realizes maybe it would make him walk funny.
"You already walk funny, Nate", Kensi states.
Once they've left Ops, Callen wonders where they are with friends or lovers?
Dom who's still at the touch screen has uncovered some information, regarding it as a man who stands out.
"Friend or lover?", Callen wonders.
"Not really the question that jumped out at me", Dom replies with Callen believing it's an informed guess.
As it shows Bobby Jenklow's photo license, Dom remarks the guy in question is a 6 foot 3, 200 pounds, Special Forces paratrooper guy so he's leaning towards a friend.
"Good call", Sam remarks.
Joining them at the touch-screen, Eric reveals he's got a hit on that phone number and details are coming up. He then brings a record, stating the same number who called and erased McGuire's voice call also called the Commander fifteen times in the last four days.
Callen believes somebody's trying to cover their tracks, distance themselves from the investigation with Callen wondering who is the man who made those calls?
Dom then realizes it's the Special Forces paratrooper guy who runs a private security firm, something that has Callen and Sam stunned.
Some time later, the two agents are outside the firm in question which is called "Bobby J. Jenlow and Associates" with Callen wondering what the associates do.
"Anything Bobby J. Jenlow tells them to", Sam replies before pointing at a car which has no front plates which has Callen remarking, "Small world".
The meeting with Jenlow doesn't go positively as Jenlow is downright hostile to Callen and Sam while his personnel seem greatly unnerved by the presence of the two NCIS agents while Jenlow reveals he was the one who was in the car Sam was chasing at Commander McGuire's apartment and that Jenlow himself even deleted McGuire's voice messages over the fact they were private conversations, something he's been doing and that he and McGuire were close since they were both kids.
Jenlow believes McGuire was kidnapped and that he wasn't a traitor but Sam and Callen correct him, informing they know McGuire wasn't kidnapped, that he was working with them for the better part of a week and was even shot dead to shut him up.
As Sam wonders what Jenlow or Bobby knows, Jenlow states, "Nothing".
Sam notes Jenlow is Special Ops and that it's amazing they all know just by looking before revealing he was a SEAL.
When Sam wants to know if Bobby's planning a hunting party, Jenlow tells them they're done with Callen and Sam leaving.
Outside, Sam believes Jenlow could compromise the operation against the cartels and that he's putting together a team to go after them with retribution in mind and when Callen wonders how long they have, Sam grimly tells him not long.
At Helen McGuire's house, Kensi and Nate are talking to her about her brother and how he doted on his niece, often bringing her to the beach or the movies but once Helen has stepped outside to take a phone call, Nate confides in Kensi his belief that everything Helen just told them was a lie much to Kensi's surprise.
Callen and Sam have returned to Ops and are about to head upstairs, only for Hetty to summon Callen who despite Sam wondering if he wants back-up goes to her area to meet her.
In her Office Area, Hetty has Callen do a palm scan and an iris scan.
She even gives him keys to a new car and phone before they head for the wardrobe area where she also chooses some new clothes for Callen to wear with the two discussing what the G in Callen's name means with Callen revealing no-one ever told him which has Hetty stunned while Callen heads into the dressing room to gather.
Regrouping yet again in Ops, the team are waiting for McGuire's laptop to be cracked while Kensi soon realizes that the cartel have also abducted Helen's young daughter and Commander McGuire's niece, Emma.
Thanks to Eric's work, they also learn that McGuire was not only being forced to down classified information but that he was also secretly sending them to his laptop, essentially recording everything the cartel was making him steal which has Callen realizing Operation Dakota has been compromised.
Bringing Vance online once more, Callen reveals Dakota has been exposed and that McGuire's niece is missing with Vance revealing it's late for Dakota to be stopped and that they've got only four hours to find out which cartel is responsible for the leak and the military team will hit them first with Vance even informing Emma McGuire is a priority.
As Callen and Sam head to Jenlow's location in Hollywood Hills, Kensi returns to Helen's place with Helen realizing Kensi figured it all even though Kensi states they put the pieces together.
Helen reveals she wanted to tell Kensi but Jenlow wouldn't let her and she then informs Kensi that Jenlow and his men are at the house right away with Kensi calling Sam and informing him of this.
As Callen activates the Challenger's camera, Sam races to the location.
Back at the house, Kensi is preparing to have Helen's phone bugged so Eric can run a trace on it while Helen states her brother, Frank gave up his life for his niece, her daughter.
Even though Callen has admitted he's not feeling lucky after the last time he got shot, he and Sam race into the house as Eric and Dom watch via the Challenger's camera.
Almost immediately, they're blocked by an SUV with two men emerging and firing at them, prompting Callen and Sam to fire back, killing the two men.
Once that's over, the two NCIS agents begin searching for Jenlow and his men, only to find Jenlow's own men have already been shot dead.
They eventually make their way up to the house where they find Jenlow on the floor, badly wounded.
While Callen looks after Jenlow, Sam does a quick sweep of the house while Jenlow begs Callen to get Emma.
Producing his cell phone, Callen calls Eric, asking for an ambulance while informing him he and Sam are fine.
Once Sam's finished, he grimly informs Callen Emma isn't here much to Callen's own despair.
A while later, ambulances and LAPD units have arrived at the house and are busy examining and processing the scene while Jenlow is brought to hospital for treatment but not before begging Callen yet again to find Emma.
Inside the house, Sam reveals the two men are cashed up with Callen discovering that the car has GPS and two addresses.
Via speakerphone, Callen calls Eric who informs them the house is owned by Manny Cortez or "Mad" Manny Cortez according to Sam with Nate revealing during a conversation between himself, Eric and Dom Cortez is a mass-murdering drug lord with a classic Oedipus complex, Nate regarding the last part as an educated guess and he'd have to personally talk to Cortez to be sure.
Nate reveals that Cortez and his father ran one of the largest drug cartels in Mexico and now it's just Cortez himself.
When Eric wonders what happened to Cortez's father, Nate reveals that according to legend, Cortez cut off his father's toes with a pair of bolt cutters and then his fingers as well as other bits, implying Cortez tortured and murdered his father.
Back at the house, Helen is examining the drawings her daughter did which are on her fridge when Kensi arrives in, apologizing before telling her Emma wasn't at the location.
When Helen wonders about Jenlow, Kensi reveals he's on his way to the ER, a gunshot wound but she believes he's gonna be okay.
Suddenly, the phone ringing has the two women tense but things calm down when it's revealed the caller is Luis, Helen's ex and Emma's father but even though Helen tries to tell her ex Emma's been kidnapped, she can't and has Kensi do instead with Kensi assuring Luis she and her NCIS colleagues will do everything they can to find and save Emma.
Once the call's ended, Helen reveals her daughter adores her father and he only just gets back in town a couple of times a year before revealing they're planning on having Thanksgiving together.
Callen and Sam then arrive at the second address, Callen driving the Mercedes while Sam is the passenger seat. Given it's heavily guarded, there's no way of knowing who's inside with Sam believing it'll take a week of planning and a small army to gain access.
Worse still, Nate believes that self-interest will win out and that at some point, Emma will be killed, having become a liability the second her uncle was murdered.
In Ops, Eric, Dom and Nate brainstorm ideas but nothing seems to work until Hetty arrives, quoting some Latin which has Dom realizing it means "Give what they want" although Hetty informs him the correct translation is "Give him what he wants".
This has Dom realizing Cortez wants satellite access 24/7.
Now with a plan, Callen and Sam gain access to the house by claiming they can get satellites for Cortez to look at 24/7 as Dom, Nell, Eric and Hetty watch from Ops.
After being searched for weapons, Callen heads off while Sam is prevented from leaving.
Despite this, Callen meets an unnamed man, identifying himself as Frank Hawley, a lawyer with Callen ever passing Sam off as a client of his.
The two then head outside where Callen manages to get a snapshot of the man, sending it back to Ops with Nate realizing it's not Manny Cortez.
As a young girl runs forward, calling the man "Daddy", Callen and Sam are stunned by what they're seeing.
Meanwhile, Kensi receives a call from Nate who tells her Emma's father, Luis Perez is behind this and that he's with her.
Stepping away, Kensi informs Nate that Luis called the house earlier and that he knows they're NCIS with Nate stating the operation's compromised.
Once Emma's gone, Luis produces a gun and reveals he knows about NCIS with Callen wondering how long he's been working with Manny Cortez.
"Seven, eight years", Luis replies. "A double life".
Callen is disgusted, shaking his head in disbelief at what he's hearing and tells Luis he was McGuire's brother-in-law with Luis revealing Frank never thought Luis himself was good enough for his sister, Helen with Callen remarking Frank was right and realizing that he set up Frank to believe his niece was kidnapped with Luis admitting she was kidnapped but by her father.
Aiming the gun at Callen's head, Luis vows Emma's not going back.
Suddenly, Callen's phone rings and he answers it, offering it to Luis, claiming it's McGuire who's not really dead.
As Luis reaches for the cell phone, Callen attacks while inside, Sam subdues the bodyguards with Sam even throwing one through a window while Callen knocks out Luis with a choke hold before shooting the other bodyguard who had been about to kill Sam.
Once that's over, Callen thanks Dom, revealing he was the one who rang Callen's cell-phone.
Callen then heads outside to where Emma is preparing to go for a swim with Callen telling Kensi to give her- Helen the phone.
Eventually, Helen and Emma are able to talk to each other for the first time in days while Kensi, Sam and Callen all look on.
Later, at Ops, as the personnel go for the night, Callen is searching through his bag for something when Hetty arrives in with expense accounts, informing him he's six months behind and she thought that seeing as he had so much time off for recuperation, he would have caught up on his paperwork.
"Please tell me you're kidding me, Hetty", Callen says.
Hetty states she could but it would be a lie with Callen in disbelief.
She tells him there's no rush and tomorrow will be fine.
Once again, Callen is dismayed.
As Hetty leaves, Callen sits down at the desk and begins preparing to file in the reports while wishing Dom, Kensi and Nate a good night.
Sam then arrives in, offering Callen the sofa at his place which is free although Callen tells him it's noisy.
Sam agrees before wishing Callen or G a good night with the two exchanging a fist bump.
As Sam departs from the Bullpen, Callen fills in the last name and first name of the report, revealing his name is G. Callen. He looks up, lost in thought before glancing back down.
In the Office Area, Hetty shuts her laptop before closing it as she too prepares to leave OSP for the night.
She then uses the stool to grab her handbag and is on her way out before she stops.
As she does, it's shown that someone, a man is working on a computer in the Tech Area, implying OSP might be active 24 hours a day.
Upon seeing the jackets hung up on the railing, Hetty pulls a face, obviously displeased but she then sees Callen lying down on the couch, area, his right arm behind his head and his left hand on his chest with Callen fast asleep.
Hetty then pulls a blanket over him as Callen keeps on sleeping.
Then, satisfied, she leaves to go home.
It then pans down, landing on the white bag that has the words "Callen, G" on it.
- Callen returns to work a month early and it's revealed that he has scars on his back, presumably the bullet wounds from his near-fatal shooting.
- It's show that the Office of Special Projects has moved to a new location, possibly due to security concerns over Callen's shooting and that they've been there for three months.
- NCIS OSP Operations Manager Henrietta Lange and NCIS Probationary Agent Dominic Vail are both introduced for the first time with Callen and Dom meeting each other for the first time.
- It's revealed that Kensi is fluent in Portuguese, Callen is fluent in Spanish and that both Dom and Hetty know Latin.
- It's revealed that prior to joining NCIS, Callen previously worked for the FBI as a Special Agent while Sam was a SEAL in the United States Navy.
- It's revealed that Callen and Hetty have known each other for three years.
- It's revealed that Kensi is a Marine brat.
|G. Callen||Chris O'Donnell||An NCIS Special Agent who is now in charge of the Office of Special Projects field team and who is partnered with fellow NCIS Special Agent Sam Hanna.|
|Nate Getz||Peter Cambor||Operational Psychologist with the Office of Special Projects.|
|Kensi Blye||Daniela Ruah||An NCIS Special Agent with the Office of Special Projects and who is partnered with NCIS Probationary Agent Dominic Vail.|
|Dominic Vail||Adam Jamal Craig||NCIS Probationary Agent with the Office of Special Projects and who is Kensi Blye's partner.|
|Sam Hanna||LL Cool J||An NCIS Special Agent with the Office of Special Projects and who is partnered with NCIS Special Agent G. Callen.|
|Leon Vance||Rocky Carroll||NCIS Director.|
|Eric Beale||Barrett Foa||An NCIS Tech Operator with the Office of Special Projects.|
|Henrietta Lange||Linda Hunt||The Operations Manager for the Office of Special Projects.|
|Helen McGuire||Clare Carey||A housewife and Luis Perez's ex-wife as well as the mother of Emma Perez and sister of Navy Commander Frank McGuire.|
|Luis Perez||Alex Fernandez||Helen McGuire's ex-husband and Emma Perez's father and Navy Commander Frank McGuire's ex brother-in-law well as the head of a drug cartel.|
|Emma Perez||Ariel Gade||Helen McGuire and Luis Perez's young daughter as well as Navy Commander Frank McGuire's niece.|
|Frank McGuire||Nelson Rockford||Commander in the United States Navy and the main murder victim who is also Helen McGuire's brother, Luis Perez's former brother-in-law and the uncle of Emma Perez. Uncredited role.|
|Bobby Nixon||Matthew St. Patrick||A paratrooper.|
|Emilio||Daniel Edward Mora||A member of the drug cartel.|
|Paramedic (Identity)||Vincent dePaul||A man who appears in the episode.|
|Suburban Diver||Eddie J. Fernandez||Uncredited role.|
|Tailor||Arne Starr||Uncredited role.|
|LAPD Officer (Identity)||Peter Weireter||An unnamed Officer of the Los Angeles Police Department.|