Why Was Mark Harmon’s Gibbs Still In The NCIS Opening Credits During Season 19? We Finally Have The Answer

When NCIS was renewed for Season 19 back in April 2021, it was also confirmed that Mark Harmon would return as Leroy Jethro Gibbs, the CBS series’ main protagonist. However, when the season premiered months later, Harmon’s Gibbs only stuck around for the first four episodes, and Gary Cole’s Alden Parker took over as the team’s new leader. The weird thing, though, is that for the remainder of NCIS Season 19, Harmon remained in the show’s opening credits despite being absent, and we finally have the answer for why this happened.

CBS Entertainment president Kelly Kahl cleared thing up to TV Line, explaining that Mark Harmon stayed in the NCIS opening credits past his exit in the episode “Great Wide Open,” which aired on October 11, 2021. As Kahl put it, this was a “transitional” year for the popular procedural, so evidently keeping Gibbs at the top of the opening credits was meant to keep a little extra familiarity. However, now that NCIS is returning for Season 20, will Gibbs continue to stay in the opening credits? Kahl simply said this:

That’s something we might look at going forward.

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