‘NCIS’: Mark Harmon Was on the Cover of TV Guide Magazine an Insane Number of Times

by Madison Miller
Photo by: Michael Tullberg/Getty Images

We may not get to see Mark Harmon, the glorious back-of-the-head-slapping Leroy Jethro Gibbs on “NCIS” anymore, but you are very likely to spot him on the cover of TV Guide Magazine.

Mark Harmon is in many ways a TV powerhouse. He played his character on “NCIS” back when it first started in 2003 all the way up until this season. His character had an emotional goodbye with the rest of the crew. Viewers at home were emotional too, seeing as he had been playing the character for nearly two decades.

Mark Harmon and His TV Guide Magazine Appearances

In addition to his acting career, which spans beyond “NCIS,” (we adored him in “Freaky Friday” too, after all), but he’s also a producer. He has his own production company called Wings Production and is still an executive producer for “NCIS,” although he isn’t on the screen anymore.

It’s no wonder that Mark Harmon has so generously graced us with his presence on 23 different covers of TV Guide Magazine. The latest includes a special edition that was published not long after Harmon left the show.

This means that the “NCIS” actor actually has the second-most appearances on the magazine ever. He is behind iconic comedic genius Lucille Ball. She was on the cover 39 times, including the first-ever cover of the magazine from 1953. She was with her newborn son in the picture, Desi Arnaz Jr.

For Harmon, 19 of those appearances are related to his time on “NCIS.” If you want to take a look at some of these covers, TV Insider has them all in one place. They feature a number of stunning pictures and interesting headlines, usually related to whatever was going on in the show at that time. One of my personal favorites has the headline “Still Smokin’: Seven Seasons in, the ‘NCIS’ rat pack keeps on swinging!”

It features Harmon posing alongside Michael Weatherly and Sean Murray. They’re all dressed up like they’re about to appear in “The Sopranos,” and Weatherly even has a cigar sticking out of his mouth.

He appears with just about every “NCIS” character on the covers. That includes Pauley Perrette, Rocky Carroll, Cote de Pablo, and sometimes all on his own (glorious turtleneck and all).

Mark Harmon Talks ‘NCIS’ Success

“NCIS” has stayed popular since it first aired in 2003. Despite a lot of cast changes and different plot developments, it has still been able to keep fans captivated.

Mark Harmon is likely a huge factor in that success. Before his departure this season, Harmon was one of the last “NCIS” characters that had been around since the beginning. The “NCIS” actor has an idea of why he thinks the show continues to be successful.

“You kick it right back to the scripts and people. It’s a very different collection of professionals who all are proud of what they do. They work hard every day, and we like coming to work, and we like each other,” Harmon said in an interview with Entertainment Online in 2016.