[Warning: The below contains MAJOR spoilers for the CSI: Vegas Season 2 premiere “She’s Gone.”]

Welcome to the Vegas Crime Lab by Katherine Willows (Marg Helgenberger). It takes until the very end CSI: Vegas Season 2 premieres, but we find out her personal reason for wanting to return after dressing Maxine Robbie (Paula Newsom) questions earlier.

Sonia Fleming/CBS

And Max does ask why “one of the best in the business” wants to come back when they sit down at the table at the beginning of “She’s Gone.” But Catherine counters that when Max said, “work is in my blood” in his retirement party toast, she was right. She also notes that Max is abbreviated as Gil (William Petersen, not returning after said season 1). “It didn’t help that he stole his wife and that one of my best is training in LA with the FBI.” (George Foxwho returned as Sarah, too without returning. Mel Rodriguezwho played Hugo’s chief medical examiner also left between seasons.)

The only hint Catherine gives that there’s more than meets the eye is that she’s been kicked off the Eclipse board, though she won’t dwell on what happened – nor does she deny it when Max says, that feels that there is something that she is not telling her.

Catherine then joins the team to investigate the murder of Dominatrix, and Chris (Jay Lee) wonders if she got the information about the new CSIs from Gil and Sarah. “They’re on a boat in the Arctic Circle, so yeah, she probably dialed them on the satellite phone and asked about you, Chris,” Joshua (Matt Loria) answers, but hey, it gives us their location!

Throughout the episode, Catherine continues to think she is seeing a young woman named Grace. First after the text from “Benny” that says “Alonso headed to Fremont”, then in the lab. And at the end, Max calls her: “Something is wrong. Something brought you back.” And no, it’s not that she was kicked off the board at Eclipse. “That’s why you’re not there,” says Max. “I asked why you were here.”

Kathryn shares that she met Grace when she started taking classes at WLVU, and it was like seeing her younger self in the mirror; Grace was a dancer, just like Catherine, and had big dreams of becoming a CSI. But she was new to Vegas and short on cash, so Catherine got her a job as a cocktail waitress at the Eclipse. But now Grace has been missing for three weeks and no one is investigating. When Kathryn asked questions, no one had any answers, and no one at Eclipse even seemed to care. Then the council called a vote and she was kicked out, so now she’s wondering what they’re covering up. Well, unfortunately, it looks like they’re covering up the murder, walking past the half-buried body in the last shot.

Now we can’t help but wonder: How will Catherine react when she finds out? And will it set her on a path that will ultimately lead her away from the Crime Lab by the end of the season?

CSI: VegasThursday, 10/9c, CBS

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