The long-running drama was renewed for season 21 in February 2023
Originally conceived as a spinoff to the show JAG, NCIS became an even bigger success and has turned into the third longest-running primetime drama in television history. The show follows a team within the Naval Criminal Investigative Service as they work on special cases that range from espionage to terrorism, homicide and more.
The series premiered in 2003 and, within a few seasons, became one of the highest-rated shows on television. Variety reported that even in 2022, almost 20 years after its premiere, NCIS was still the second most-watched series of the year. The show’s strength comes from its fantastic cast of diverse (and quirky) characters, who often inject a good dose of humor into the show’s otherwise action-packed formula.
Because it’s such a long-running series, NCIS has become an integral part of many viewers’ lives, as they’ve watched the team change, with new characters joining the crew, others leaving and some longtime fan favorites growing alongside the audience. So, it’s no surprise that fans are always excited for the next season.
Here's everything to know about the upcoming season 21 of NCIS.
Was NCIS renewed for season 21?
In February 2023, CBS renewed NCIS for its 21st season along with a slew of other series including its sister series NCIS: Hawaii and other popular shows like Young Sheldon, The Equalizer and CSI: Vegas.
In a statement to Deadline, the network said, “This season CBS is continuing its winning tradition, delivering an unparalleled combination of top returning series and new hit shows that are entertaining huge audiences on both broadcast and streaming.”
When will NCIS season 21 premiere?
Just a few months after CBS renewed NCIS, Hollywood’s writers and actors both went on strike, completely shutting down production on virtually every movie and TV show. The writers’ and actors' strikes eventually ended in September 2023 and November 2023, respectively.
Season 21 will premiere on Feb. 12, 2023, according to CBS.
Are the stars of NCIS still on strike?
The SAG-AFTRA strike ended on Nov. 9, 2023. Many of the show’s actors were seen on the picket line in Los Angeles, including Katrina Law, Wilmer Valderrama, Sean Murray, Brian Dietzen and Diona Reasonover.
How did season 20 of NCIS end?
Season 21 will pick up after a massive cliffhanger that left audiences shocked. In the season 20 finale, the team was working to stop a Russian terrorist attack, which tried to knock out power across America with the hopes of collapsing society in the process.
To stop the attack, Torres goes undercover as a prison inmate to get information from Yuri, who he believes has information about the attack. While in prison, Torres also befriends an 18-year-old inmate, who claims he was framed. A man visits the young inmate and Torres instantly recognizes him.
Suddenly, power goes out in the squad room just as blackouts begin hitting the entire East Coast, with cities like Washington, D.C., Baltimore and Philadelphia all being affected. Thankfully, the team halts the plan and power is restored ... leading up to the episode’s biggest moment.
With the terrorist plot foiled and Torres no longer undercover, the episode ends with him inside the house of the man he recognized from prison. The man arrives home, turns on the light and sees Torres sitting in his living room. Initially, the man is confused and doesn’t know what’s going on, but Torres tells him, “Take your time, it’ll come to you.”
Eventually, the man recognizes him, calling him “Nicky” and saying that he used to spend a lot of time thinking about him, his mom and his sister. Just before the scene ends, Torres pulls out a gun and tells the man he wants to watch him die.
Who is in the cast for NCIS season 21?
Due to the now-concluded actors’ strike, it’s unclear which actors will return and who might join the cast since actors couldn't negotiate contracts during the strike. However, there’s no reason to assume anyone from the main cast won’t be reprising their roles, especially star Valderrama since he’s involved in season 20’s cliffhanger ending, which will likely play a major role in the season 21 premiere.
Sadly, one character who won’t be returning for season 21 is Dr. “Ducky” Mallard. Actor David McCallum, who portrayed the role, died in September at the age of 90. A statement obtained by PEOPLE says the actor died peacefully of natural causes. McCallum’s NCIS costars paid tribute to the late actor, with many taking to social media to remember their time together on set. Pauley Perrette, who played Abby Sciuto, shared a collection of set photos on her Instagram while Michael Weatherly wrote, “David McCallum made every moment count, in life and on set. Let’s raise a jug and celebrate a funny fantastic authentic man.”
Where can I watch previous seasons of NCIS?
For anyone with a cable subscription, episodes of NCIS can be viewed on CBS.com and all 20 seasons are available to stream on Paramount+. The streaming service also has every episode of NCIS spinoffs as well like, NCIS: Hawaii, NCIS: New Orleans and NCIS: Sydney.
For more People news, make sure to sign up for our newsletter!
Read the original article on People.