‘NCIS: Los Angeles’ Star Gerald McRaney Opens Up About Being Typecast in Military Roles Despite Not Serving

by Anna Dunn

NCIS: Los Angeles star Gerald McRaney opens up about being typecast in military roles in a new interview ahead of the Season 13 premiere. McRaney, who plays Admiral Hollace Kilbride, has never actually served, but somehow gets a lot of Military parts.

McRaney has played several Air Force and military characters. He’s also played Marines on Simon & Simon and Military Dad. His current character, Kilbride, has had a ton of military service in his past. He served in Vietnam and was even a Navy SEAL at some point. None of that background is familiar to McRaney.

“I’m actually sort of shocked by it because I am not a veteran,” McRaney said to UPI. “The closest I ever came to this was ROTC in college.”

McRaney first appeared on NCIS: Los Angeles in 2014. He continued to make guest appearances as the hilarious dreary Kilbride until finally getting promoted to a regular for this season.

“My best guess is that they decided they needed an old fart in the cast and I was handy,” he joked.

McRaney never served, but he did try. In 1967, McRaney tried to enlist in the Marine corps. However, he was already married and they were only looking for single men. He also had family that served, letting him witness a bit of that life from the outside.

“My sister was married to an Air Force officer, and they traveled all over for years,” McRaney explained. “The kids, about the time you get used to one school, you’re up and gone and gotta make all new friends and get on a new football team.”

The ‘NCIS: Los Angeles’ Team is Excited to Have Gerald McRaney on Board

Production seems just as excited as the fans are about Kilbride becoming a full-time part of the show.

“When you have an actor of Gerald McRaney’s caliber, you do everything you can to make sure you get him as often as possible,” showrunner R. Scott Gemmill told Deadline. “Admiral Kilbride has been an esteemed part of our universe for seven years now and we look forward to viewers seeing him come in and shake up our NCIS: LA world.”

Admiral Killbride is really stepping up his presence as a boss this year. While we don’t know much about what season 13 has in store for Kilbride, we do know he’ll spend a chunk of that time duking it out with Hetty. The two characters are both older, stubborn, and like to be in charge.

Whatever happens in season 13, Gerald McRaney as Admiral Kilbride coming in full time should make everything better. Season 13 finally premieres tomorrow on Sunday, October 10th. You can watch it on CBS at 9/8 Central.