HomeAmerican EntertainmentTVNCIS‘NCIS’ Fans Still Can’t Get Over How Gibbs Says One Character’s Name

‘NCIS’ Fans Still Can’t Get Over How Gibbs Says One Character’s Name

by Joe Rutland
(Photo: Cliff Lipson/CBS ©2021 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved.)

NCIS fans do love and miss Leroy Jethro Gibbs, played by Mark Harmon, on the long-running CBS drama. They listen to his every word. Sometimes, they “think” that they are hearing one thing from Gibbs when he might be saying another. A still-beloved character appears to be on the tip of his tongue a lot. Fans just hear him say this character’s name and they are beside themselves.

Viewers of ‘NCIS’ Are Wondering What’s Up With Gibbs’ Pronunciation of Ziva

A thread on Reddit wants to know what is up with Gibbs and Harmon, who almost left the show sooner than he did, and his pronunciation of Ziva’s name. Ziva, of course, was Ziva David, played by Cote de Pablo. One fan starts up this linguistic journey.

The thread is titled, “Is it just me, or does Gibbs sound like he’s saying Ziver?” The Redditor writes, “We recently started watching from the beginning and I’ve noticed that Gibbs sounds like he is pronouncing Ziva as ‘Zeever.’ I know people that mispronounce things like soder (soda), idear (idea)… and I’ve noticed that Gibbs does this with Ziva’s name and it rather irks me! Anyone else?”

This fan offers up his opinion. “I was glad that he started calling her Zeever,” this person writes on Reddit. “It was a fun nickname from him to her. It was a closeness that a father would show to a daughter, and he does show us from time to time that he truly misses having a daughter.” That response gets a lengthy reply from the original poster.

Maybe Gibbs Had A Clever Nickname For Character

“I completely agree that as a sweet nickname/pet name it shows a closeness and further supports Gibbs’ role as a father figure,” this person writes. “I have watched this series many times and didn’t think it was explained, maybe just inferred by the audience. But as I said – I know people with a certain regional dialect that replace the ‘a’ at the end of words with an ‘er’ sound. And wondered if that’s what occasionally happened. And as such, I was slightly irked by it but that’s my own thing. I never felt that it was explained (but I fall asleep during many episodes) so I was merely curious what others thought.”

Some fans are still devastated over Harmon’s exit from the show. Back to the thread, one fan says about “Ziver” that “It was his nickname for her.” That’s backed up by this comment: “No he actually playfully calls her Ziver from time to time”. Another NCIS fan also raises an interesting point: “In at least the first 13 seasons, Ziva is the only one he specifically calls his ‘kid’. Not Tony. Not Tim.”