While you can be upset at CBS all you want and create conspiracy theories over Cote de Pablo’s exit from “NCIS,” which really happens every time that an actor takes off from a beloved show (though it was in this case her decision to leave), we do at least have to give producers credit right now for the way in which they are planning to honor the character even after their exit. They are not just going to introduce Ziva 2.0 or create some sort of Cousin Oliver situation; instead, the plan is to take some time, play around with some other characters, and then make a decision when the time is right.
Speaking to TVLine, executive producer Gary Glasberg addressed this by talking about a character who is going to fill the occupational space left by Ziva, and how she is very different from the character that we are going to be losing:
“The first two episodes are all about Ziva’s departure. And then in the third episode we introduce, for instance, a woman in her 50s who is a few days away from retirement and just needs to fill the desk time. She, in theory, knew Gibbs all the way back to the days of Mike Franks. So we’re going to bring in people like that and have some fun with different characters. And then, hopefully, when people are comfortable enough, one will walk in and be The One.”
We do assume that “NCIS” will have figured this out probably well before the end of season 11, mostly because they will want to set the stage for a 12th season if they can get around to a point where this will happen.
For now, what do you think about the plan to have temporary fill-ins for Ziva, almost in the same way that “American Idol” tried to replace Paula Abdul after she spent eight years on her show? If you want to see a few more details on a “romantic” end for Tony and Ziva and some more news, just be sure to click here.