Should 'NCIS: LA' Explore a Sam-Katherine Romance? (POLL)
[Warning: The below contains MAJOR spoilers for Season 11, Episode 7 of NCIS: Los Angeles, "Concours D'Elegance."]
It's been about two and a half years since Sam (LL Cool J) lost his wife Michelle (Aunjanue Ellis) on NCIS: LA, but is he ready for a new relationship?
Two episodes in the beginning of Season 11 certainly suggest there are at least sparks between him and insurance broker Katherine Casillas (Moon Bloodgood) and the potential for something more than occasional allies. She even gets an honor that not even Sam's longtime partner, Callen (Chris O'Donnell) — who has saved his life numerous times — has in "Concours D'Elegance": driving privileges.
In Episode 7, Sam and Callen run into Katherine while talking to a witness to an attempted murder at a video game streamer's party; she ensures the gamer's properties and possessions. We're treated to the same dynamic as in "Provenance": she sees the agents as a bit out of their element, they're all amused by one another, and she and Sam continue to bond, this time over their shared interests of wine and cars.
They once again need her help on the case, this time for access to an exclusive private auction, where the gamer's car (and important tech hidden inside) is up for sale. She refuses to let anything happen to the car — it's worth at least $250,000 — and, just like when Kensi (Daniela Ruah) went undercover in the art world, clues them in on the main players at the auction, including those bidding on the car.
While doing so, Katherine opens up about her family, sharing a memory of her father with Sam. She then insists on joining him in pursuit of the car (and the tech) for the final chase. But it's the last moment they share that holds the most weight.
Early on in the episode, Sam shows off his red key — which "no one touches" — to Callen, but when Katherine asks if she can take the Hellcat for a spin, he hands it over immediately. "She'll appreciate it," Sam tells his partner, but it's clearly meant to be a sign of more than that, of the trust that has formed between him and the broker (which also is addressed during the case).
Could it be we've met Sam's new love interest? In previewing the season, executive producer Scott Gemmill told TV Insider that producers were "working on" a storyline involving a romance for him.
The actors clearly have chemistry, and so far, we've seen quite the fun, interesting dynamic between their characters. It's a light-hearted flirtation, something that could become more. It may just be a matter of whether or not Sam is ready to move forward after losing Michelle (and perhaps Bloodgood's availability, depending on the plan for the storyline and his next relationship).
We've seen him grieve, and the series has handled that properly. And if we are going to see Sam and Katherine together, that's been done right as well, with the two slowly getting to know one another and feeling each other out.
We've seen her twice in a span of a few weeks, and she's not only fun to watch with Sam, but with the rest of the team as well. (We saw her meet Fatima in "Concours D'Elegance.") Whether or not anything develops between her and Sam, we can't wait to see her working with the team again.
What do you think of the potential of a Sam and Katherine relationship? Vote in the poll below.
NCIS: Los Angeles, Sundays, 9/8c, CBS