NCIS Series 18 Overview (2020-2021)


Introduction

The eighteenth season of NCIS, an American police procedural drama television series, originally aired on CBS from 17 November 2020 through 25 May 2021.

The season contains 16 episodes, making it the shortest in the series, and includes the series’ 400th episode. The season was produced by Belisarius Productions and CBS Studios.

Outline

NCIS revolves around a fictional team of special agents from the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, which conducts criminal investigations involving the US Navy and Marine Corps. The series stars Mark Harmon, Sean Murray, Wilmer Valderrama, Emily Wickersham, Maria Bello, Brian Dietzen, Diona Reasonover, Rocky Carroll, and David McCallum.

Cast

  • Main:
    • Mark Harmon as Leroy Jethro Gibbs, NCIS Supervisory Special Agent (SSA) of the Major Case Response Team (MCRT) assigned to Washington’s Navy Yard.
    • Sean Murray as Timothy McGee, NCIS Senior Special Agent, second in command of MCRT.
    • Wilmer Valderrama as Nick Torres, NCIS Special Agent.
    • Emily Wickersham as Eleanor “Ellie” Bishop, NCIS Special Agent.
    • Maria Bello as Dr. Jacqueline “Jack” Sloane, NCIS Senior Resident Agent and Operational Psychologist (1-8).
    • Brian Dietzen as Dr. Jimmy Palmer, Chief Medical Examiner for NCIS.
    • Diona Reasonover as Kasie Hines, Forensic Specialist for NCIS.
    • Rocky Carroll as Leon Vance, NCIS Director.
    • David McCallum as Dr. Donald Mallard, NCIS Historian and former Chief Medical Examiner.
  • Recurring:
    • Joe Spano as Tobias Fornell, Private Detective and former FBI Senior Special Agent.
    • Margo Harshman as Delilah Fielding-McGee, DoD Intelligence Analyst and McGee’s wife.
    • Pam Dawber as Marcie Warren, investigative journalist.
    • Laura San Giacomo as Dr. Grace Confalone, psychotherapist.
    • Nick Boraine as Merriweather, NCIS target.
    • Adam Campbell as Young Ducky.
    • Sean Harmon as Young Gibbs.
    • Hugo Armstrong as Eugene Coyle, from the NCIS Inspector General’s office.
    • Juliette Angelo as Emily Fornell, Tobias Fornell’s daughter.
    • Elayn J. Taylor as Odette Malone, owner of Ziva’s private office and former CIA Operative.
    • Victoria Gabrielle Platt as Veronica Tyler, NCIS Special Agent.
    • Jack Fisher as Phineas, Gibbs old neighbour.
    • Karri Turner as Micki Kaydar, Phineas’ aunt.
  • Guest stars:
    • Steven Bauer as Miguel Torres, Nick Torres’ father.
    • William Allen Young as Moses McClaine, US Secretary of Defence.
    • Zane Holtz as Dale Sawyer, NCIS Special Agent.
    • Tijuana Ricks as Pamela Walsh, CIA Agent.
    • Chris Browning as Tom Dalton, NCIS REACT Special Agent.
    • Katrina Law as Jessica Knight, NCIS Special Agent.

Production

Development

The season was ordered on 06 May 2020. On 03 June 2020, Steven D. Binder announced that the writers had begun working on the season. On 12 August 2020, it was announced that CBS Television Studios had signed a deal with the law enforcement advisory group 21CP Solutions, to consult on its crime and legal dramas, which includes NCIS. 21CP Solutions will help the series to more accurately portray law enforcement; this comes after the George Floyd Protests, which caused the television industry to rethink their portrayal of law enforcement. On 21 September 2020, it was announced that the season would start by exploring where Gibbs, played by series star Mark Harmon, disappeared to during the episode “Musical Chairs” from the previous season (S17E08), before returning to the present day. On 27 October 2020, it was announced that season would comprise sixteen episodes.

Filming

The planned twenty-first episode of the seventeenth season, which was postponed due to production on the season being shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic, is set to be the first episode filmed of season eighteen. The planned twenty-second episode of season seventeen, which would have been the 400th episode of the series, is set to be filmed and aired second, which will keep it as the 400th episode. Production on the eighteenth season began on 09 September 2020, and the series will continue to be filmed in Los Angeles. Filming for season 18 wrapped up on 29 March 2021.

Casting

On 06 May 2020, it was announced that Harmon had closed a new deal with CBS Television Studios. On 24 July 2020, it was announced that series regular Maria Bello is set to leave the show during the season, and appear in eight episodes to wrap up her character’s storyline. On 09 September 2020, it was announced that Harmon’s son Sean, would return in episode two as a younger version of his father’s character. On 21 October 2020, it was announced that Adam Campbell would also return in episode two, as a younger version of Ducky. In March 2021, Katrina Law was cast in the role of Jessica Knight. Law appeared in the final two episodes of the season with the potential to become a series regular if the series is renewed for a nineteenth season. On 26 May 2021, it was confirmed that series regular Emily Wickersham would leave the series after 8 years.

Release

The season is set to premiere during the 2020-2021 television season as part of CBS’s Tuesday lineup with FBI and FBI: Most Wanted. On 26 August 2020, it was announced that CBS hoped to begin airing the season in November 2020. On 13 October 2020, it was announced that the season would premiere on 17 November 2020. It was also announced that this will be the final season on the Tuesday timeslot, it will be moved on Mondays on its 19th season following its new spinoff series NCIS: Hawai’i.

Trivia

  • The season is Bello’s last as a series regular, as she left after eight episodes.
  • The season finale serves as Wickersham’s final appearance as Eleanor Bishop, leaving the series after 8 years.
  • Several late-season episodes feature Pam Dawber, Harmon’s real-life spouse.

NCIS Series 18

You can find a full index and overview of the NCIS Franchise here.

Production & Filming Details

  • Creator(s): Donald P. Bellasario and Don McGill.
  • Release Date: 17 November 2020 to 25 May 2021.
  • Running Time: 39-44 minutes.
  • Country: US.
  • Language: English.

Video Link(s)

 

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