Mark Harmon sat down with Larry King seven years ago to talk all things about his hit show NCIS. There also were question’s about the star’s history and about his love life.
After all, Harmon, back in the 1980s, was People magazine’s Sexiest Man Alive. He married a fellow TV star. So Mark Harmon was prepared for Larry King to ask him about his marriage. And that’s why he started laughing.
“I love you’re asking me about marriage. I love the question,” Mark Harmon said as he started laughing and then couldn’t stop. In case you’re not in on the joke, the late and beloved Larry King also was known for his marriages. He had eight of them.
“Well, we are different,” Larry King responded. “Let’s say in one area of life, I’ve been more diverse than you. “
Mark Harmon then did the grown man giggle as Larry King continued. “Like you sort of locked into one role. I like many.”
So Harmon turned from playing an NCIS special agent into a relationship counselor. “But define what you’ve found,” Harmon asked King.
“I found it,” King says of his eighth marriage.
“That’s all that matters,” Harmon said, as King replies “but the hunt took awhile.”
They stuck with the hunting metaphor. Mark Harmon told King: “It’s ok, you were hunting earlier than me. That’s all that matters.”
When King asked Mark Harmon about his philosophy on marriage, Harmon quipped that he had none and “nor would I tell you if I did.” And there was more laughter.
Mark Harmon Turned Serious to Discuss How His Marriage Works
Then Mark Harmon turned serious.
“You know what Larry, what is it? You hope to be smart enough to choose right, you know? And like you in a different time, I had to kiss a lot of frogs to get there. My point being, not throwing dirt on any of that. You learn, you grow, you change. You try to not make choices you’ll regret. ”
It all sounds so simple and normal. Mark Harmon and Pam Dawber met at a party. A mutual friend introduced them. She’d been the star of two comedies — Mork and Mindy and My Sister Sam. The two stars were both in their mid-30s and ready for a lasting relationship. They married in 1987.
The couple has two grown sons. Mark Harmon stays in the public eye through shows like NCIS. But he and Dawber keep a mostly private life. Dawber did a four-episode arc on NCIS this spring, playing an investigative journalist on the tail of a possible serial killer.
In an interview in 2017, Mark Harmon explained the choice to keep their private lives ever-so-private.
“It’s not even a choice. It’s who we are,” Mark Harmon said. “We stay home. A lot. I’m not a Twitter guy or a Facebook guy. Our sons aren’t into that either. Pam and I have both made a living in this business, and still, there’s a part of that that’s just not natural.”