‘NCIS’ Featured One Comedian You May Not Have Realized

by Suzanne Halliburton

Let’s toss it all the back to the premiere season of NCIS. Maybe you remember that time a then budding comedian portrayed a very serious doctor.

Jim Rash definitely was paying the bills with various acting jobs when he got the NCIS gig. But he still was years away from Community and his career-defining role of Dean Craig Pelton. The episode was “Left for Dead” and it first ran 18 years ago this month. The plot was super creepy, something you’d find in a horror movie.

Let’s check IMDB for the NCIS plot details: “A young lady emerges from a shallow makeshift grave in Rock Creek Park, Washington, DC; although amnesic she says that there’s no time, that there’s a bomb aboard a Naval vessel, and that people will die. A passing driver aids her and calls 911; the Metro PD responds, then calls the NCIS. Gibbs and his team investigate. Kate befriends the victim and takes her into her pad, and she slowly recovers a few memories. Gibbs finds a key, then Abby figures it out, then Gibbs and Tony find a body. The ship in question proves to be ashore and inside a building. The team learn the name of the victim, then she begins to recover more memories than she reveals. Eventually, she confronts the person responsible for her treatment, and she drops a surprise on him.”

Rash portrayed Dr. Joel Sanderson who cared for the Jane Doe (Sherilyn Fenn) when she first arrived at the hospital.

(Photo by Rich Polk/Getty Images for IMDb)

There’s Only One Character Still Around from NCIS First Season

The first season of NCIS, obviously, was a special one. It’s now in its 19th season on air. It’s interesting to look at the episode cast. Only one still is around. Mark Harmon was Gibbs, the special agent in charge. He bowed out of NCIS in October. Sasha Alexander portrayed Kate, the former secret service agent who joined NCIS. She died in the season two finale, “Twilight”. Michael Weather was Tony DiNozzo. He finally left the series in 2016 in an episode called “Family First.” The family referred to DiNozzo’s decision to leave NCIS to care for the daughter he fathered with Ziva. Pauley Perrette was fan-favorite Abby. And Abby exited NCIS in 2018 after nearly losing her life.

The lone character still around from that episode is Dr. Ducky Mallard. And even Mallard is only a recurring character making the occasional appearance. He was part of the four-part story arc that set up the Gibbs farewell. David McCallum, who plays Ducky, is expected back for an episode this spring.

NCIS is starting its hiatus as NBC airs the Winter Olympics. The show is set to return in late February. And the next episode should be a treat. Brian Dietzen, who portrays Dr. Jimmy Palmer, co-wrote the episode, his first. And Meredith Eaton will return as Carol Wilson, an old friend of Abby’s who appeared in three previous episodes.

Check out Outsider’s recap of the latest NCIS episode, “Fight or Flight,” here.