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NCIS: New Orleans - The Assassination of Dwayne Pride - Review: "Coordinated Attack"

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NCIS: New Orleans - The Assassination of Dwayne Pride - Review: "Coordinated Attack"
4.22 - "The Assassination of Dwayne Pride"
Directed by Edward Ornelas
Written by Talicia Raggs
Reviewed by Kelly Anne Blount

"The Assassination of Dwayne Pride" opens at Pride’s bar. There’s a band playing and patrons are drinking and dancing the night away. Loretta and Pride are having a great time shooting the breeze at the bar, completely relaxed.

Sebastian runs into bar to show Pride and Loretta an article that states that Pride has used excessive force during multiple cases. Within seconds, people at the bar have their phones out and are staring at Pride with disbelief.

Back at HQ, LaSalle, Gregorio, and Sebastian are watching Oliver Crane report on the Pride story he broke. LaSalle doesn’t think anyone is going to believe the story. Sebastian isn’t so sure.

Pride tells the team that Crane has details from “dozens of cases” that he’s “handled over the years” and “half of it is classified information.” Someone within the system is leaking information. That puts a lot of witnesses at risk.

Pride wants to go talk to Crane. LaSalle tells him to stay put. He and Gregorio will go talk to Crane. It will look bad if Pride goes. Luckily, he listens. He and Sebastian are going to stay at HQ and call witnesses to warn them that their information has been leaked.

Oliver Crane is not pleased to see LaSalle and Gregorio. He won’t reveal his source/s. He says, “Dwyane Pride is dangerous and he needs to be exposed.” The people at Crane’s office begin taping Gregorio and LaSalle. She knocks a file off his desk before leaving, but not because she lost her cool. She memorized the classified case number from the FBI file and gives it to Patton.

Patton has an ID on the person who last accessed the file. Turns out, Petty Officer First Class Amanda Bowers out of Belle Chasse has access to all of their files. Patton wonders, “Why does she want to leak classified information?” Ah, interesting! Pride arrested Amanda’s brother several years ago. Is that why she’s sharing case details with Crane?

The whole crew head over to Amanda’s house, but it’s too late to talk to her. She has been murdered. Her computer, wallet, and jewelry are all missing. Pride thinks the killer tried to make it look like a robbery gone wrong.

LaSalle tells them that Amanda had a boyfriend named Max that drives a silver Acura. He stayed over most nights, but they were very secretive about their relationship. The landlord saw his car there this morning.

Oliver Crane is standing outside of Amanda’s house with his camera on. LaSalle and Gregorio manage to keep the two of them apart.

When they get back to HQ, Pride gets a call Deputy Director Sanchez. He’s angry. Pride tells him LaSalle can take the lead and that he’s a team player. Sanchez ends the call by saying, “Don’t let me down.”

Outside of HQ, protestors have lined the streets. Pride wants to go talk to them. I think that sounds like a pretty bad idea… Meanwhile, Patton has a phone number for Amanda Bowers’ super elusive boyfriend, Max. It sounds like he might be a professional hit man.

Pride heads outside. The people are shouting and waving signs. Pride wants them to calm down, but before he can say anything else, someone chucks a brick at him with, “Die Pride.” LaSalle and Gregorio bring him back inside.

Rita Devereaux shows up and tells the team that there’s a coordinated attack. The target? Dwyane Pride.

Rita tells Pride that he’s in trouble. She says that someone in Washington is after him. There’s a DOJ report that he is using excessive force. Rita admits that someone wants to shut Pride and the NCIS – New Orleans office down. There’s also a cover up with Amanda. Pride wonders why someone doesn’t just try to take him out, instead of taking his team down with him. Rita explains that assassinating a federal agent would raise too many eyebrows.

Patton has news. The reason the protest started outside of Pride’s office was due to a new story that Crane dropped on his website. It turns out that bots helped spread the news about the story and encouraged people to go down to HQ and protest. Patton is going to track the people behind the bots down, but he can’t make any promises. It’s going to be tough.

Captain Estes surprises Pride with a phone call. He has an ID on the brick thrower. He lives in Clearwater. Not good. Pride tells Estes that he wants to ride with him. He says he wants to talk to the guy who threw the brick. This does not sound like a good idea.

Over at the morgue, Loretta tells LaSalle that she’s getting a lot of pushback from her bosses. She’s not giving up though. Sebastian has some minor good news. The killer, who wiped the scene clean, left one small clue. The killer left beard balm behind in the sink. So, we now know the killer has a beard.

Pride and Estes pull up to Clearwater, where he is not a popular figure. They knock on Marcus Green’s door. He comes outside to talk to them. He admits that he was paid one thousand dollars to head protest at HQ and throw the brick at Pride. Before they can arrest Marcus, a fight breaks out with the people of Clearwater. Pride and Estes get roughed up before they can take cover in Estes’ car, which is also roughed up. Luckily, backup arrives and they get out before things go too far.

Back at HQ, Estes tells Pride that something isn’t adding up. First, there was an attempted assassination of the now Mayor Taylor and then last month, a terrible car accident sidelined the State Attorney General. Someone is taking out major players in the state of Lousiana and it looks like Pride is there next target.

Rita returns with news. Patton was able to infiltrate the hacker’s server. He’s learning as much as he can as they speak. She also says the money the hackers used traces back to shell company, Primalytica, which is based in the Cayman Islands.

Rita and Pride are about to have a romantic moment, but Rita sees his bruised face. Pride tells her that he’s not going to blame anyone else for his situation.

Estes comes outside with news. They have a composite sketch of Max, Amanda Bowers’ boyfriend. Pride wants to talk to Crane. LaSalle doesn’t want him to go. Scratch that, everyone on the team doesn’t want him to go, except Rita. Pride tells them, “I’m going to give him the one thing he’s wanted this whole time, me.”

Pride and Rita show up at Crane’s office. Rita announces that she’s Pride’s lawyer. Pride convinces Crane to send his workers away. Pride tells him, “You’re being played, Crane,” and, “I’m being set up.” Rita gives Crane a sketch of Max, who they believe killed Amanda Bowers. Rita says, “Who do you think is next?”

Pride gets Crane to talk by promising him the story of a lifetime, the setup he’s facing from the DOJ. Crane gives the team the video of Max passing Crane the classified information. Even better, Max’s car has been found three blocks from the train station.

The rest of the team convinces Pride to stay while they head down to the train station. Patton finds Max using a facial recognition program. He shaved his beard and is wearing a leather jacket. With Sebastian’s help, LaSalle spots Max in line, but before he can approach him, Max takes off.

LaSalle and Estes catch up to Max, but he gets away as a train passes through the station. Gregorio and Sebastian are on the other side of the tracks and are looking for Max. Gregorio takes off her hand brace, but before he can draw her gun, Max attacks her. He gets away for a few seconds before Sebastian kicks him right in the gut, taking him down for good.

Back at HQ, the team learns that Max is a former intelligence officer out of Virginia. They connect him to the Primalytica bank accounts, but they don’t have anything they can pin on him for Amanda Bowers’ murder.

Before Pride can begin interrogating Max, AUSA Karen Izzo stops by HQ. She tells Pride that she’s bringing him in to talk. Yikes! Karen tells Pride that he’s, “under investigation for excessive use of force and power.” Oh no! Where’s Rita, his lawyer?

Pride tries to talk to Karen. She’s being really tough. Pride asks her if someone at the DOJ puts her up to this, to which she doesn’t respond.

Back at HQ, LaSalle and Gregorio interrogate Max. Gregorio says, “We have the cards. You have one play, that is to talk, and tell us everything you know.” Max replies, “I have the only card that matters.”

Sebastian interrupts and says, “We have an issue.” They follow him outside and come face to face with three lawyers who claim they are here to pick up their client. LaSalle informs them that they have him on camera leaking classified documents to Crane. One of the lawyers tells them that the government won’t be pressing charges at this time and that they are free to collect Max. LaSalle and Gregorio can’t believe it. Sebastian tells them he called to confirm and that they can indeed leave with Max. Hmmm… I wonder if they’re going to kill him? Interesting! They are the same law firm that represents Oliver Crane! LaSalle points out that that isn’t a coincidence.

Karen is going hard on Pride. She tells him, “Someone has to pay.” Oh my gosh! She tells him that a, “grand jury is being convened immediately.” She tells him he’s free to go now, but he’ll be indicted soon. She instructs him to turn in his badge and gun. She adds that he is not to speak with anyone at NCIS.

Pride asks, “Why are you doing this, Karen?” Before responding, she turns off her recording device and says, “It’s not me, Dwayne or my boss, or even his boss. You see what I’m saying? Get yourself a lawyer. A good one. Fast.”

Rita is waiting for Pride outside of the federal building. He tells her that the grand jury is meeting in the morning and he’ll be charged. Rita wants to help, but Pride tells her he needs someone in DC, “who has my back.” He tells her, “It’s the only way,” and then kisses her.

The episode ends with Pride saying, “Whoever’s after me, isn’t taking me down without a fight.”

My Thoughts:

I liked this episode; however, I hate seeing Pride backed into a corner. Also, I wanted more Sebastian and Gregorio scenes. I wonder when Halliday will start? I hope she and Christopher have good onscreen chemistry. Either that, or the writer’s finally give LaSalle a relationship that he’s into. I want more happy scenes with LaSalle!

Question… It seems like everyone is upset with Pride over the Clearwater situation… But, didn’t Pride help save a bunch of people in Clearwater from being kidnapped? Plus, didn’t the people behind the shipyard want to knock down a ton of homes in order to build the necessary infrastructure? Can someone please refresh my memory?

Leave me a comment below with your thoughts!

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