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NCIS: Gibbs Rules

Most everyone has heard of NCIS

Originally introduced during a two part episode of the CBS series JAG, NCIS is the second longest-running scripted non-animated primetime TV series in the United States.  The spin-off premiered on September 23, 2003, and is currently in it’s thirteenth season.   During that time everyone has come to love the character of Leroy Jethro Gibbs, his personality, head-slaps to Tony DiNozzo and of course Gibbs Rules have endeared him in the hearts of the shows many fans.

What Are Gibbs Rules?

Gibbs Rules - Code to Live ByGibbs Rules are a set of rules that govern Jethros code of conduct, both professionally and personally.  In the first episode, Yankee White, we are given the first three rules; we learn later they are most likely Mike Franks rules as duplicate rules one and three are introduced in future episodes.  Gibbs Rule two has yet to be revealed.  A conversation with Ziva David, in Season 3, episode Silver War Gibbs indicates it’s his job to teach her, the approximately 50 rules.  As time goes on we learn his rules are scribbled on scraps of paper and kept in a small tin at his home, although we rarely see the tin.

As indicated by NCIS Wikia it was revealed in the last few minutes of the Season 6 episode, Heartland (episode) that Gibbs’s rules originated from his first wife, Shannon Gibbs, where she told him at their first meeting that “Everyone needs a code they can live by”.

The only rule of Shannon’s personal code that is quoted is either her first or third: “Never date a lumberjack.”

We have come to learn there are actually more than 50 Gibbs Rules, as Rule 51 : “Sometimes you’re wrong.” and Rule 69: “Never trust a woman who doesn’t trust her man.” have both been mentioned.  Over the years Tony, Timothy McGee, Abby Sciuto and Jimmy Palmer have all developed at least one personal rule of their own.

Season 1, Episode 1: Gibbs Rules (Original Rules 1 – 3)

During a flight on Air Force One, a Navy Commander collapses and dies after having lunch with the President of the United States.  After continuing developments occur,  NCIS is forced to work with Secret Service Agent Caitlin Todd; they eventually take over the investigation after landing in Wichita, Kansas.  What looked like a simple death by natural causes escalates as another player is found dead in his car.  It soon becomes apparent that a murder plot on the President by any means necessary is developing.

Gibbs Rule #1Gibbs Rule #2

During the ensuing investigation Kate confines three plane stewards in the press cabin, which presents the first opportunity for Gibbs to tell Kate two of his important rules which are: 1- Never let suspects stay together, and 2- Always wear gloves at a crime scene.  After a meeting up with Dr. Donald Mallard, the NCIS Medical Examiner, to discus some discrepancies in the time of death, Gibbs mentions Rule #3 – Don’t believe what you’re told: double check. Kate sarcastically asks him if she should write the rules down in her Palm Pilot or crochet them on pillows.

Gibbs Rule #3

After people continue to get sick with what appears to be the flu, a long, frustrating and tumultuous investigation Gibbs drops the terrorist ready to kill the President just as the Secret Service arrive, guns drawn, to the Presidents room.  Due the fiasco Kate resigns her position as a Presidential Secret Service agent, because it’s the right thing to do.   Gibbs agrees and then tells her if she pulls that crap at NCIS, he won’t give her a chance to resign.  Kate wonders if that’s a job offer.

Tune in to more NCIS: Gibbs Rules, each week, to find out.

NCIS Photo Credits

Jerry Avenaim [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL(http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons

By Bill Wheatley from Los Angeles, CA, USA (NCIS Filming Uploaded by SpecialWindler) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

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