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How NCIS Just Delivered A Tragic Twist For A Beloved Character

Warning! The following contains spoilers for the NCIS episode "The First Day." Read at your own risk!

NCIS is a show where death is never a rare occurrence, but rarely does it hit at such an emotional level as it did in its latest episode. The episode opened with Jimmy Palmer looking a little more upbeat than normal and bringing way more energy to the group than usual. This struck the group as strange, especially as they expected their coworker would be a little off his game ever since losing his wife Breena to COVID-19.

It was a revelation so shocking that I had to search and see if I missed something in the past episodes. It turns out this was new information for NCIS fans and an event that made for one of the saddest episodes of the CBS procedural in seasons. I was bummed out from the jump, but for Jimmy, he was almost manic and trying to convince everyone he was fine if he could get help for some of the pain he's been feeling.

Jimmy was trying chiropractors, yoga, and weighted blankets, but nothing was really helping the mysterious pain. Finally, it took another man familiar with heavy loss, Gibbs, to pull Jimmy aside and hit him with the truth. He was in denial about his wife's death affecting him, and no amount of distraction was going to keep him from feeling that pain. Jimmy finally broke down in tears, hugging his boss and telling the tragic tale of his wife's passing.

NCIS revealed that not only did Jimmy lose his wife, but he also wasn't able to be at her side when she was in the hospital due to protocols. Jimmy wrote his wife a letter stating all the things he loved about her, hoping she'd read it, but it was to no avail. She never woke up from her coma, leaving Jimmy without the opportunity to at least tell the love of his life goodbye.

The NCIS team couldn't do a ton for Jimmy he didn't already do for himself, save one thing. Bishop, Torres, McGee, and Gibbs all got together at the office after-hours with Jimmy to celebrate the life of his wife, Breena. Jimmy finally read the letter aloud that he wrote his wife in an attempt to get a bit of closure for himself and begin to cope with her death. NCIS gave no indication this would be the end of Jimmy's grieving, but at least he may start working his way out of the denial stage.

NCIS airs on CBS Tuesdays at 8:00 p.m. ET. For more on the series, read up on my latest thoughts on what's happening with Bishop and Torres and how the two may be secretly together.

Mick Joest

Mick likes good television, but also reality television. He grew up on Star Wars, DC, Marvel, and pro wrestling and loves to discuss and dissect most of it. He’s been writing online for over a decade and never dreamed he’d be in the position he is today.