‘NCIS’ Once Featured a Popular ‘Breaking Bad’ Actor

by Madison Miller

“NCIS” has been home to more amazing guest stars than we can truly keep track of. That’s what happens when you’re one of the most successful cable TV shows and you’ve also been around for 19 seasons.

One prominent actor made an appearance on “NCIS” before he would star in the action-packed, five-season-long series “Breaking Bad.”

Dean Norris portrayed DEA Special Agent Frank Schrader during all of the seasons. His character is the opposite of his brother-in-law, Walter White. That’s the chemistry teacher that ends up a leader within the meth industry. During his time on “Breaking Bad,” Norris was extremely likable. He’s a supportive husband, uncle, and friend, only to eventually get betrayed by Walt.

For TV fans, his moments as Frank will always solidify Norris’ acting skills. It wasn’t his first gig in the TV world, however. Rather, he also starred in the season one episode of “NCIS” called “My Other Left Foot.” During the episode, a dumpster diver is looking for hidden gems but finds something completely different. He notices a severed leg that has the “Semper Fi” Marine Corps tattoo on it.

Norris plays Gunnery Sergeant Vestman. He is in charge of the motor pool at a military base. Gibbs visits him near the end of the episode. As it turns out, the two have some pretty intense history. Gibbs broke up a barfight with Vestman as one of the fighters. He ended up in the brig for the entire thing. Vestman doesn’t have any real connection to the murder.

Gibbs and the team figure out the whole scenario is a nasty trick to get some life insurance money. It was a pretty ordinary episode of “NCIS,” looking back. The fact that Dean Norris was in it certainly makes it stand out, seeing as he’s so popular now.

In addition to “Breaking Bad,” you may recognize Norris from roles in shows like “Under the Dome,” “The Big Bang Theory,” “Scandal,” “Nova Vita,” “Claws,” and “United States of Al.”

Although “NCIS” has gone through an ever-changing TV landscape, it has still managed to remain popular over the years.

So much so that it was able to attract Former First Lady Michelle Obama. She cameoed as herself in order to promote her charity Joining Forces. This is an organization that is devoted to helping service members, their families, and veterans. According to Insider, this episode was actually a massive TV milestone.

“We’re the first dramatic film production to actually film in the White House,” Executive Producer Gary Glasberg said. The show also perhaps attracted a younger crowd when Zac Efron made an appearance during season three. He happened to pop by for a visit only three days before “High School Musical” would premiere. He was in the episode called “Deception” from 2006.

Not long after this, Zac Efron was quickly launched into stardom.