NCIS Sneak Peek: Auld Acquaintances Remembered

‘Tis the season to cuddle up next to the ones you love and watch the show you love as NCIS pulls out the holiday stops for its Christmas episode.

Christmas comes early when the cast and crew of NCIS gives us the great gift of David McCallum.

An actor who excels at both introspection and retrospection, McCallum’s Ducky has the chance to deliver both when a murder of a Navy captain is linked to a former fiancé of Ducky’s mother.

The good doctor is forced to examine the ramifications of choices that he made as a young man, and McCallum, who can do more with a few sentences than most of us can do with an encyclopedia of phrases, surely will make the most of his rumored last holiday season with the show.

The uber-fabulous (pun intended) Charles Shaughnessy guest stars as Balthazar Kilmeany, Victoria Mallard’s ex-fiancé, who may be involved in NCIS’s case. Kilmeany’s phone is linked to the murder of Navy Captain Mason Green (guest star Brent Anderson). Clues in the death include a ticket to The Nutcracker, Ducky’s former address and an Uber-style ridesharing service.

Does the choice of “Balthazar” as a name for Victoria’s fiancé offer anything as a clue, or is it just a tribute to the holiday season? After all, Balthazar was one of the Wise Men in the Christmas story.

Kudos to the writers for giving the deliciously wacky Victoria a backstory worthy of her late portrayer, the delightful Nina Foch. Check out the actress’s credits and legacy to be duly impressed.

How appropriate that NCIS has chosen the real-life The Right Honourable The Lord Shaughnessy, star of THE NANNY and DAYS OF OUR LIVES and the fifth Baron Shaughnessy, as a worthy retro love interest for the fabulous Foch.

Two more pros with prose also are among the gifts that the NCIS Santas are delivering this year when Gibbs (Mark Harmon) rings in the holiday season with Fornell (guest star Joe Spano). Juliette Angelo as Emily Fornell joins her TV dad and “Uncle Gibbs” for the holiday festivities. Christmas dinner may never be the same.

Adam Campbell and Adam Croasdell return as younger versions of Ducky and Angus Clarke, and Caroline Lagerfelt appears as a younger Victoria.

NCIS also stars Pauley Perrette, Sean Murray, Wilmer Valderrama, Jennifer Esposito, Brian Dietzen, Emily Wickersham, Duane Henry and Rocky Carroll.

Additional guest stars on tonight’s episode, “The Tie That Binds,” include the multitalented Clyde Kusatsu (again, check his credits) as Mister Takumi Rin, T.J. Linnard, Hannah Barefoot, Scott Subiono, Amanda Jaros and Mikie Beatty. “The Ties That Bind” was written by Steven D. Binder and directed by Arvin Brown.

Join the NCIS family as they exchange holiday gifts, Pow-Nog and memories tonight at 8:00 p.m. ET/PT on CBS in the U.S. and on Global in Canada.

For all the latest TV news and reviews