NCIS is seen around the world. It’s an international TV phenomenon.
And here’s an interesting detail: There are nine NCIS movies that, technically, never were shown in the United States.
Looper reported that the nine NCIS movies all were shown in Great Britain over a three-year span from 2013-16. But they weren’t really movies. Call them TV special events. What NCIS producers did was repackage several episodes together and call them by another name.
The show is incredibly popular worldwide. It’s shown in more than 200 countries and territories. And for many years, NCIS earned the International Television Audience Award for a Drama TV Series.
NCIS ended the 2020-21 TV season as the top-rated scripted show. It ranked third overall, averaging 12.54 million viewers. Football was the only programming to beat it. Sunday Night Football on NBC finished first and Thursday Night Football on Fox and the NFL Network was second. NCIS was a huge reason CBS finished as the top-ranked network.
Will NCIS Maintain Dominance Without Key Character?
But the upcoming season 19 will sorely test the popularity of the show. Specifically, is it Mark Harmon who makes the show or is it truly an ensemble cast with well-written storylines?
Earlier this week, TVLine reported that Harmon, who plays Gibbs, likely will be in only a handful of shows. One source told TVLine that the number could be in the low single digits. Considering a normal season is 20 episodes or more, Gibbs will barely be a presence. Throughout the spring, there was all sorts of speculation about whether Harmon wanted off the show, completely. CBS threatened to cancel the show if Harmon didn’t renew his contract. But in May, CBS announced that the show would return for a 19th season. However, no one has said what Harmon’s role would be.
The finale set up the possibility of Harmon’s absence going forward. In fact, it remains a huge cliff hanger. Gibbs was out on the lake, driving his new boat. And then the boat blew up. Cameras panned the burning debris. That’s when everyone saw Gibbs swimming away. He either faked his own death or he miraculously lived through a murder attempt.
Show Added Gary Cole, Elevated Katrina Law
Meanwhile, NCIS added Gary Cole to the show this week. He’ll play FBI Special Agent Alden Park. So, he’s not replacing Gibbs. But given Cole’s acting stature, showrunners likely will be making him a focal point. Plus, Katrina Law was promoted to full-time cast. The show added her at the end of this season. She’ll likely have a much bigger role in season 19. The show said goodbye to Emily Wickersham, who played Ellie Bishop, in the season finale. Law plays special agent Jessica Knight. She specializes in hostage negotiations and criminal interrogations.
Plus, NCIS moves to Monday nights this fall to serve as a lead-in for the new Hawaii spinoff. So stay tuned to Outsider. We’ve got all the details.