| Season 9
Episode 13|| Leslie Libman|
| Nicole Mirante-Matthews|
January 10, 2012 (2012-01-10)
"A Desperate Man" is the 13th episode of the ninth season of the American crime drama television series NCIS, and the 199th episode overall. It originally aired on CBS in the United States on January 10, 2012. The episode is written by Nicole Mirante-Matthews and directed by Leslie Libman, and was seen by 21.03 million viewers.
A Desperate Man Wikipedia
NCIS investigates the death of Navy lieutenant Maya Burris, whose body was found at a construction site. Ziva thinks about her future and has a life-changing decision to make when Ray asks her to marry him. However, Ziva later finds out that the murdered lieutenant was killed by Ray, who went rogue from the CIA in order to complete an assassination he had botched overseas. Ray is arrested and Ziva breaks up with him since she no longer feels she can trust him.
"A Desperate Man" is written by Nicole Mirante-Matthews and directed by Leslie Libman. According to executive producer Gary Glasberg, "Ziva has been going through some decisions and choices, just as Tony has. With this week’s episode, Ray is going to return, and she’s going to have to face some decisions of her own and figure out exactly what’s going on with that relationship. This was an opportunity to tease that and bring it all up to the surface".
Ziva's relationship with Ray Cruz was last seen in the episode "Pyramid" back in season 8. "[Ray] is coming off of a long assignment, and there are professional things going on with him, and personal things going on with him, and it’s all going to get dealt with and come to a head in this episode". As for Tony, "[he] wants Ziva to be happy. "He’s protective of her and cares about her and has feelings for her, and, at the end of the day, wants to make sure that she’s safe and happy with the direction of her life. There’s some protective nature that goes along with that, and I think some of that is what you were picking up on [at the end of the last episode]".
Brian Dietzen (as Jimmy Palmer) and Enrique Murciano (as Ray Cruz) are recurring in this episode.
"A Desperate Man" was seen by 21.03 million live viewers following its broadcast on January 10, 2012, with a 12.6/19 share among all households, and 4.1/11 share among adults aged 18 to 49. A rating point represents one percent of the total number of television sets in American households, and a share means the percentage of television sets in use tuned to the program. In total viewers, "A Desperate Man" easily won NCIS and CBS the night, while the spin-off NCIS: Los Angeles drew second and was seen by 16.60 million viewers. Compared to last week's episode "Housekeeping", "A Desperate Man" was up a bit in viewers. This episode ended up being the most watched of season 9.
Steve Marsi from TV Fanatic gave the episode 4.5 (out of 5) and stated that it was "another solid episode overall. I'd like to see the team members involved in more steady relationships - either with each other or outsiders - that don't involve murderers, but no complaints".