While Maggie Bell Is Still MIA, FBI Just Filled In Some Important Blanks About Tiff

Katherine Renee Turner as Tiff in FBI Season 5
(Image credit: CBS)

Spoilers ahead for Episode 5 of FBI Season 5, called “Flopped Cop.”

FBI is going strong in the fifth season (which included finally airing the postponed Season 4 finale), even though Missy Peregrym’s Maggie Bell is still absent. Maggie has been recovering off-screen from exposure to sarin gas since back in the spring while Peregrym was on her real-life maternity leave, and her return in Season 5 still has yet to happen. The good news is that the hit CBS drama delivered a doozy of an episode with “Flopped Cop” that filled in some blanks about Tiff’s past with the NYPD. 

The case started when what seemed to be a squeaky-clean accountant was shot and killed, only for his widow to reveal that he was in the drug game. To get to a drug lord, Tiff turned to a former cop who also happened to be the cousin of a suspect. They were still friends even though their careers had gone in different directions, and Scola wasn’t sure that it was a good idea to use him undercover despite Tiff vouching for him. 

They were both right, in the end – Ralphie helped them close the case, but they had to shoot both Ralphie and the killer before the end of the hour. The partners went out for a drink after what turned out to be a very rough case, and Scola opened up about his decision to quit his lucrative job after 9/11 and his brother’s death, to become an FBI field agent. 

This was enough for Tiff to want to share her own story that the case had brought back up for her. When Scola asked why she agreed to put Ralphie undercover despite knowing that he was a wild man, she shared:

I was a big reason why Ralphie’s life fell apart. The night that Ralphie got flopped, we went out drinking after a funeral for this cop. We got really drunk and pulled this stupid-ass prank, and Ralphie was the only one that got caught. The brass leaned on him hard for names, but he wouldn’t roll. And so they flopped him. They took his badge. If it wasn’t for Ralphie’s loyalty, I’d’ve got blown up too.

Tiff has been an exemplary member of the team ever since Katherine Renee Turner joined the cast of FBI back in Season 3, and the agent's background as a former NYPD cop has played a part more than once. This was the first time that the drama gave away that she was one close call away from losing her career in such a way, long before she was able to join the Bureau. “Flopped Cop” dropped some background on Tiff to show more of why she is the way that she is. For his part, Scola was sympathetic to her story, and they both raised a glass to Ralphie. 

After FBI switched up the partnerships throughout Season 4, the team has more or less settled into OA and Nina working together (and Zeeko Zaki opened up about how OA might have handled last week’s trauma differently with Maggie) with Tiff and Scola back together. Nina is still expected to be around a little longer (with Missy Peregrym previously saying that she’d be back to work in September), so the two partnerships could keep going strong for the foreseeable future. 

FBI (opens in new tab) airs new episodes on Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET on CBS, ahead of FBI: International at 9 p.m. and FBI: Most Wanted at 10 p.m. You can revisit past episodes streaming with a Paramount+ subscription. Zeeko Zaki has also shared why fans should be excited for Missy Peregrym’s return once Maggie is back, so that’s something extra to look forward to!

Laura Hurley
Senior Content Producer

Laura turned a lifelong love of television into a valid reason to write and think about TV on a daily basis. She's not a doctor, lawyer, or detective, but watches a lot of them in primetime. Resident of One Chicago, the galaxy far, far away, and Northeast Ohio. Will not time travel, but will sneak references to The X-Files into daily conversation.