NCIS season 15 finds new Mark Harmon foil in Maria Bello

Maria BelloNCIS season 15 has just cemented their latest series regular, and it’s someone in Maria Bello with some significant name value.

CBS confirmed today that the former Prime Suspect star is going to be a series regular for the upcoming season starting in episode 4; unfortunately, they have not disclosed her name just yet. Per the official description, she is “an NCIS agent who was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the Army and served two tours in Afghanistan. After joining NCIS, she built her reputation as the agency’s premier forensic psychologist. Unlike the other agents, she can second-guess and challenge Gibbs (Mark Harmon), so there will be friction but also mutual respect. She is a positive force, mischievous and at times acerbic.”

All signs at the moment point to this being the character we first teased a little while back, someone who could be eventually a love interest for Gibbs depending on how the story shakes out. We’re great with that, given that it’s been a while since his romantic life was explored, and we want Harmon to do some different things on the show beyond just him walking into rooms and telling everyone to grab their gear. We’ve seen that a lot over time and it’s time for something new. (Granted, that’s probably still going to be there, as well.) Even if she’s not a romantic down the road, it’s good to have someone challenging him.

In a new statement, show executive producers and co-showrunners George Schenck and Frank Cardea had the following to say:

“We have always been big fans of Maria Bello’s work and are excited to be introducing her as an agent who not only has a distinct talent but also a unique relationship with Gibbs.”

Hopefully, one of the added benefits of this casting is that it stops all of the stupid rumors that Harmon is leaving/being written out after the premiere/some of the other stuff that’s out there. Many of these sites peddling this nonsense will probably now try to backtrack on it and act like it never happened … or just find some other way to work Harmon in the keywords to perpetuate the narrative. Oh well.

Regardless, this news excites us tremendously as someone who loved Bello’s work in A History of Violence and knows that she brings SO much to the table in terms of dynamic performances. Anytime you get an actress like this aboard a show, it’s going to be a net positive for the cast, crew, and viewers alike.

This role opened up in the regular cast following the departure of Jennifer Esposito, who was a part of the show last year in the role of Alex Quinn. We do think that character had potential, but the show clearly decided to move forward in a different direction and Esposito later said that it was only meant to be a one-year gig in the first place.

What do you think about this Maria Bello news, and what do you think she will bring to NCIS season 15? Share in the comments! (Photo: CBS.)

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