The Bone Yard is the fifth episode in NCIS Season 2 as well as the 28th episode of the entire NCIS series.
The NCIS team arrive at a crime scene after being called to investigate the death of a mobster and despite Army CID insisting the death was an accident, Gibbs soon realizes that they've stumbled onto a dumping ground, one that the local mob has been using for years to dispose of their victims. Things take a turn when Tobias Fornell reveals that he's being framed by a local mob boss and that one of the FBI agents is actually a double agent or rather a mole working for the mob.
The scene opens in a dumping ground where numerous old and abandoned cars that have even fallen into decay lie all over the area.
Inside one car is Vic Gera, a supposed mobster awakens to find himself lying in a car with his hands bound.
He then realizes that he has a decayed skeleton for company.
Outside, the Marine Corps are preparing to test-fire a bomb. Gera soon gets free from the car and from a distance, one of the Marines notices what's going on while the other Marine orders that the bomb not be dropped.
But it's too late as seconds later, a series of bombs hit the ground, resulting in Vera's death while dust flies everywhere.
In a change from their normal workday, the NCIS Major Case Response Team are at the gym.
While NCIS Special Agent Caitlin Todd gets herself warmed up by doing some exercises which include stretching, her colleagues, fellow NCIS Special Agents Anthony DiNozzo Junior and Timothy McGee enter the gym with McGee remarking that she's pretty flexible.
Unfortunately, Kate spots McGee looking at her and DiNozzo tells McGee that he hopes the younger Agent wore a cup.
Their boss, NCIS Special Agent Leroy Jethro Gibbs arrives in and announces that the training's begun. He assigns McGee to go to Kate who's already busy taking her frustrations out on a punching bag much to McGee's horror.
DiNozzo and Gibbs soon have a boxing match while Kate uses her technique to get the better of McGee.
The boxing match ends with Gibbs getting the better of DiNozzo yet again.
Their match is interrupted with Gibbs's cell-phone ringing and while he speaks, McGee manages to get the better of Kate but seconds later, she hits him in the crotch which has McGee doubling over in pain.
Gibbs exits the ring, announcing that the training's over and they're heading to Quantico to investigate a guy who had a fight against a 500-pound bomb that ended with the guy losing.
As Gibbs and Kate leave to go get changed, DiNozzo comforts McGee or rather tries to by telling him that Kate had three older brothers growing up and he believes that there's some unresolved issues there.
Still in pain and on the floor, McGee sarcastically retorts with, "You think?".
A while later, the team arrive at the crime scene that is overrode with Army CID personnel.
When Gibbs, Kate and Tony get out, Gibbs upon examining the scene grimly orders them to get the gear while he finds who's in the charge of the "circus".
As they get out the gear, Tony blames the brakes grabbing on McGee's failure to check the vehicle since it's McGee's responsibility to make that the vehicle's in perfect running condition.
They then meet Marine Corps CID Gunnery Sergeant John Deluca who Gibbs berates for the state of the scene.
Despite this, Deluca believes that it's an accidental death and the guy was someone looking for scrap metal.
Gibbs orders his team to get down to the area but Deluca warns them to make sure that they stay within the marked areas DOD have cleared because he doesn't need another dead civilian on his hands and after spitting, storms off.
Kate sarcastically calls the spitting thing "attractive" while Gibbs orders that the area be cleared except for EOD personnel.
When Tony asks about Deluca aka "Mr. Potato Head", Gibbs insists that the Gunnery Sergeant stays.
"Looking for a reason to whack him in the head, Gibbs?", Kate asks.
Once they've left, Kate and DiNozzo get McGee to go ahead after they trick him into believing the path that EOD arranged is wrong.
They all soon get to the body and begin processing the scene with DiNozzo even noting that the victim has very expensive shoes.
Gibbs soon follows the victim's footprints and finds the rope that was used to tie his hands with before he and Deluca discover another body in a car.
"Still think this is an accidental death, Gunny?", Gibbs asks.
In the morgue, Ducky gives Jimmy fingerprints to run and once he's left, Gibbs arrives in.
Ducky tells him that he was right and that the victim received a rather savage beating before he died.
When Gibbs inquiries about the burnt body, Ducky tells him that the burnt body suggests that the victim has been dead for six months.
Gibbs then realizes that they've run into a bone yard: a serial killer's dumping ground.
It then cuts to the badly burnt body lying on the slab.
Back at the crime scene, Deluca manages to get some finger bones before he and another Marine run for cover after unknowingly triggering a live explosive inside a car.
As he and the Marine lie on the ground, Deluca remarks that at least, he gets to give Gibbs the finger.
In the lab, Abigail Sciuto is talking to McGee about Kate kicking him in the crotch when it's revealed that the first victim in the explosion has been identified.
As that happens, Abby's computer gets hacked.
While she and McGee try to stop it, Gibbs and DiNozzo arrive with DiNozzo munching on a sandwich and unhelpfully asking if the whole thing's a video game.
The hacking stops when Gibbs unhooks the computer and then asks what's going on.
Abby and McGee tell him what they know before Abby gives Gibbs a sheet containing information concerning the victim's ID. She then grimly tells him whoever the guy is, he's got friends in high places.
Up in the bullpen, the team discuss what they've learnt and McGee is sent to help Abby find out who hacked the computer.
Gibbs then gets a call and is left further pissed when it's revealed that it was Deluca.
He then leaves the bullpen, seething and raging about how the Gunnery Sergeant hasn't finished screwing up his investigation with Kate remarking that she thought that Tony was the only one who could piss Gibbs off like that.
"You never met his second wife", Tony remarks.
In the Evidence Garage, Deluca gives Gibbs the evidence he got from the crime scene.
When Gibbs ponders further, Deluca reveals that EOD kicked him off the crime scene and that the entire area is off-limits until it's been cleared.
Deluca even states given that there's decades of unexploded devices on the ground, it could take for up to three weeks for the whole area to be cleared.
Gibbs, unsurprisingly isn't willing to wait that long and dials a number on his phone.
As he heads for the lift, Deluca mumbles, "You're welcome, Agent Gibbs" and spits into a bottle.
As Gibbs is granted access to the elevator, he urges Deluca to come in which Deluca accepts albeit a bit hastily.
Up in the lab, Abby's getting ready for round two with the mysterious hacker and as the battle begins, she and McGee are left stunned when they backtrack the source of the hack.
In the bullpen, Kate is telling Gibbs, DiNozzo and Deluca that EOD has cleared ten percent of the range so far and that they found three more bodies.
If they do the math, then Kate believes that it might be about thirty or more concealed victims on the range.
Gibbs then orders Deluca to co-ordinate with the provost marshal and that there is to be a cordon around that range 24 hours a day.
Deluca expresses doubt but Gibbs then gives him the glare and Deluca gets on it.
As he leaves, Deluca asks Tony and Kate if there's a secret to getting on Gibbs's good side but they both tell him that Gibbs doesn't have one.
McGee then arrives and is about to tell Gibbs who the hacker is when Agent Tobias Fornell and Charles of the FBI arrive in and inform them that they're the ones responsible for asking why NCIS is so interested in Vic Gera given that they ran Gera's fingerprints through AFIS.
The team all gather down at the morgue when Fornell reveals that Gera was an undercover FBI agent but when Gibbs offers Fornell a joint investigation, Fornell refuses.
However, he wants to talk to Gibbs in private and once they've gone, Kate and Tony get into a pissing match with Charles and the other Agent.
In the lift, Fornell asks if Gibbs knows who Jimmy Napolitano is. Gibbs does and Fornell reveals that he has spent half his career trying to put Napolitano behind bars but every time he's managed to walk free due to a technicality.
Gibbs finds it hard to be sympathetic considering they let Ari go.
Fornell states that Ari is a valuable intelligence asset while Napolitano's nothing but a cheap hood.
"I knew this was a waste of time", Fornell states.
At least we agree on something", Gibbs replies and restarts the lift.
However, Fornell stops it, asking if everyone has told Gibbs he's an insufferable bastard. Gibbs states that they have. Fornell then states that he came to Gibbs for help.
Gibbs then makes a reference to the joint investigation but Fornell tells him that he couldn't say anything in front of his FBI colleagues.
He believes that for some reason, Napolitano has always been one step ahead of him and that every agent and every informant that gets close to the mob boss ends up like Gera downstairs and all the evidence points to a mole.
When Gibbs suggests asking Internal Affairs, Fornell tells him that they can't help him and even admits that he considers Gibbs a friend.
Fornell ponders Gibbs about helping him.
Gibbs admits that he's thinking about it but Fornell tells him that it's settled and restarts the lift.
Fornell then tells Gibbs that the FBI believe that he is the mole responsible.
As such, the doors open and as Gibbs gets out, Charles and the rest of the FBI guys get in.
It then cuts to Gibbs who silently nods before the elevator doors shut.
Then, a few minutes later, the big man Jimmy Napolitano arrives on scene with Charles explaining that Napolitano is politically connected and has the finest lawyers money can buy.
Charles and Tony playfully voice a scene from The Godfather before getting a look from Gibbs.
Gibbs visits Fornell in prison where Fornell informs him that they found coke (cocaine) and money in his freezer. He's being framed due to his vulnerability which is Ari and given that he was the one responsible for arranging the meeting between the two, Fornell's in big trouble.
When Fornell states that he's not going to get out of this, Gibbs tells he will but just not the way he likes.
In the morgue, Ducky has identified the second victim as being Frank Pilato aka "Frankie P", a mobster who was supposed to testify against Napolitano five years but disappeared while walking his dog one Sunday afternoon.
Ducky has also found that the victim died from lead poisoning after three slugs or bullets were shot into his body at close range and that while he was executed years ago, his body was recently exposed to the elements.
Gibbs then orders Charles to get the files on Fornell and when Charles protests that he's finished as a federal agent if he gets caught, Gibbs advises him not to get caught.
Up in the lab, Abby's busy running the finger while McGee stares at her and they're interrupted by Kate and Tony where Tony tells them that he let Gibbs win at the gym and took a dive for the team but if Tony wins, then Gibbs is going to take it out on all of them.
While this is happening, Gibbs has appeared unexpectedly behind Tony.
"So you took a dive for the team", McGee states.
"Of course", Tony replies.
"That's good to know", Kate says.
"It sure is", Gibbs agrees.
Tony remarks that he's waiting but Gibbs holds off on giving it and instead asks Abby for information on the finger.
She's found traces of mercury fulminate which the military stopped using in 1986 and McGee realizes that the mob has been dumping bodies on the range for at least eighteen years.
Gibbs thanks Abby and orders McGee to get Little Ricky's DNA.
As he leaves, he gives Tony a headslap, telling him it's no fun if he knows it's coming.
McGee smirks and DiNozzo then headslaps him, stating that it's in revenge for McGee eating his sandwich.
Up in the squadroom, McGee announces that he's figured out how to get into the clinic Napolitano used and Kate agrees to go but Tony volunteers to go instead, stating that would anyone believe that McGee slept with Kate?
Gibbs comes in and Tony informs him of the plan, essentially claiming McGee's plan as his own.
Tony tells Gibbs they'll get it in an hour and Gibbs compliments him.
Tony, unsurprisingly thinks that he met him but Gibbs means McGee.
Charles arrives with the file Gibbs was looking for and it shows photographs of Fornell and Napolitano meeting one another and the photos themselves were taken a day before the undercover agent disappeared.
It then cuts to a cell where Fornell then hangs himself.
The cell is now a crime scene and Charles is in denial about Fornell's death, stating that Fornell wasn't the type of guy to hang himself.
Gibbs then requests that the AFIP Medical Examiner give a copy of the autopsy to Ducky.
As Charles looks on, Fornell's body in the body-bag is zipped up and taken away.
Tony and Kate are at the clinic, both undercover and performing to be an arguing couple.
This eventually proves to annoy the nurse at the desk to no end and she tells Kate that she can wait in another room away from Tony.
Seizing the moment, Kate triumphs in taking a photograph of the samples.
A while later and back at the lab, with Gibbs, Tony and Kate looking on, Abby successfully matches them and confirms that they're Little Ricky's blood samples.
As they leave, Tony remarks that he and Kate make a good couple although Kate believes it's just for the Jerry Springer show.
Once they're gone, Abby calls after them that she digs their threads.
Eventually, the three men are taken into custody by NCIS but when Napolitano asks about Fornell, Gibbs gets more pissed off and even draws his gun, intending to kill the gangster but soon relents and lets Napolitano go.
Later, in the bullpen, Jimmy soon calls Gibbs to arrange a prisoner exchange and when Tony, Kate and McGee start arguing about which of them should go, Gibbs stops them by whistling and stating that Agent Charles is going which leaves everyone confused.
When Kate protests about his choice, Gibbs tells them that Naps (Napolitano) will be turning over a guy who is either FBI or Justice and as such, Charles is the only person who can identify them.
With that, Charles agrees to go and he and Gibbs depart, leaving the rest of the team behind.
At the meeting, Ricky is complaining about his bracelets, stating that they're killing him but Charles is simply patrolling the area, ignoring Ricky's requests.
Gibbs soon returns from taking a leak in the brushes and the two Agents wait and suddenly, a big jeep or an SUV arrives at the scene.
Gibbs puts the headlights to announce their presence and on the other end, Naplitano and Sal get out.
Naplitano demands Ricky and Gibbs silently orders Charles to go get the other man.
When Charles emerges with Ricky, Napolitano asks his son if he's alright.
Ricky begins complaining about the bracelets on him.
Gibbs then demands the mobster's other bargain of the exchange, the one they agreed on.
Naplitano tells Gibbs that they should leave their respective back-ups in their cars before ordering Sal to get their prisoner out.
However, Naplitano doesn't agree to the standards but Gibbs, having foreseen that this would happen presses a button which causes a tree to blow up.
As Charles edges closer, his gun drawn, Gibbs puts cord around Ricky's neck and tells the men that it's a dead man's switch and that the only thing Naplitano has to do is give him the mole's name.
Naplitano says nothing but Charles is twitching, his gun still drawn and then unknowingly reveals that he's the mole.
However, a man wielding a sniper rifle quickly emerges from the car, takes aim and shoots Charles in the head, the impact killing the corrupt FBI agent instantly.
With that, the mobsters retreat, Jimmy abandoning Ricky to spend a few years in prison although Gibbs soon reveals that the supposed wire is actually electrical cord.
The next morning, Kate and Tony arrive in and ask McGee what he's doing.
McGee's stunned at the fact that it was Charles who was the mole all along but Kate and Tony tell him that they knew because they're seasoned investigators.
Suddenly, Gibbs and a very much alive Fornell walk in.
Like McGee, Kate and Tony are stunned and they all gather around Gibbs's desk, shocked.
"What?", Gibbs asks.
It then cuts to McGee, Kate and Tony who are still at staring Gibbs, all three agents completely lost for words.
- Gibbs has no brothers or uncles. Gibbs's father is also dead. However in the season 6 episode Heartland, Gibbs goes back to his hometown, and sees his very much alive father. He would have likely said he had no family in order to "keep them safe."
- FBI Agent Charles: Jimmy Nap's version of The Ice Man. This quote is referring to Richard Kuklinski, who was a Mafia contract killer and supposedly killed about 200 people. One of the people he killed was dumped in a well full of ice cold water, which was then filled with a layer of concrete to hide the body. After quite a few years, Kuklinski was aware that his luck was wearing thin and in an attempt to not get caught, he removed the perfectly preserved body and disposed of it another way.
- The gym where the team are seen training at the beginning of the episode is probably the same one that was seen in the Season 1 episode, Split Decision (episode) albeit with a different name on the wall.
- When Abby is busy comparing the two blood samples in the lab, "Complicated" by Collide is heard playing in the background.
- This episode also marks one of the few times where the main criminal doesn't die in a stand-off with the NCIS team. Instead, the criminal here, Agent Charles in fact dies at the hands of a man associated with the mob.
- Season Two Cast
|Leroy Jethro Gibbs||Mark Harmon||An NCIS Special Agent in charge of the main NCIS Major Case Response Team.|
|Anthony DiNozzo Junior||Michael Weatherly||The Senior Agent of the main NCIS Major Case Response Team and also the second-in-command.|
|Caitlin Todd||Sasha Alexander||A Secret Service Agent previously assigned to the Presidential Protection Detail on Air Force One and who is now an NCIS Special Agent as well as Tony DiNozzo's partner.|
|Abigail Sciuto||Pauley Perette||A Goth who is also the Chief Forensic Scientist and who also works for the NCIS Major Case Response Team.|
|Timothy McGee||Sean Murray (actor)||An NCIS Special Agent previously assigned to the Norfolk Naval Base who is now the Junior Agent of the main NCIS Major Case Response Team.|
|Donald Mallard||David McCallum||NCIS's Chief Medical Examiner.|
|Tobias Fornell||Joe Spano||An agent with the FBI.|
|James Palmer||Brian Dietzen||Gerald Jackson's temporary replacement as the Assistant Medical Examiner.|
|Charles||John Rosenfeld||An agent with the FBI and Jimmy Napolitano's mole.|
|John Deluca||Chris Ellis||A Gunnery Sergeant with the Army CID.|
|Jimmy Napolitano||Robert Costanzo||A Mob boss.|
|Ricky Napolitano||Joe Tabbanella||Jimmy Napolitano's son.|
|Wells||Mary Pat Gleason||A nurse who works at the clinic that Tony and Kate go to, disguised as an arguing couple.|
|Federal Marshal (The Bone Yard)||Blue Deckert||A Federal Marshal.|
|AFIP Medical Examiner||Chas. Floyd Johnson||A Medical Examiner with the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology who examines Tobias Fornell's body as he fakes his own death.|
|Chet Starling||Matthew Atherton||A Marine Captain.|
|Stinson||Laird Macintosh||A Corporal.|
|Vic Gera||Michael Guarnera||A supposed mobster who's actually an undercover FBI agent.|
|Randall||Curt Doussett||A State Trooper.|
|Sal Balducci||Oleg Zatsepin||An associate of the Napolitano family.|
|Tiffany (The Bone Yard)||Dawn Ashley Cook||A stripper. Uncredited role.|
|Abe Vigoda||Stuart Gold||A mole for the FBI spying on the Napalitano owned strip club. Uncredited role.|
|Marine Corps Captain||James Pitt||Uncredited role.|