Mark Harmon ‘NCIS’ Exit: Stars & Fans React to Dramatic News
In the Monday, October 11 episode of NCIS, Harmon’s Special Agent Leroy Jethro Gibbs officially announced that he was stepping away from his career in law enforcement. After wrapping up a case in Alaska, Gibbs told Tim McGee (Sean Murray), “I’m not going back, Tim… I’m not going back home.” As for what he’s looking for next, Gibbs said, “I don’t know. My gut’s telling me I’ll know when I find it.”
After the episode had finished airing, tributes and farewells from cast, crew, and viewers poured in for Harmon.
“My head gets why tonight’s ep had to happen but my heart…? That’s going to take a while to get used to the idea,” tweeted one fan. Another added, “If this is a setup for a possible #Gibbs exit, I’m calling it now, it’ll be the end of #NCIS. I’m not saying #MarkHarmon IS the show but he’s a big part of it. Not looking good for a season 20.”
A more understanding viewer wrote, “I am grateful to Mark Harmon for the years he dedicated to @NCIS_CBS. I am a die hard fan and watch reruns daily. It was time to give up working such a grueling schedule. I’m sad but ok. Enjoy! Hope to see Gibbs in flashbacks and cameos or remain as a consultant like Dr Mallard!”
Another thanked Harmon for his time on the show, writing, “I don’t even have the words but I thank Mr. Harmon for these fabulous years of work. I love everyone still on NCIS so I will still be there every Monday night but I will be watching even more reruns than I currently do. Thank you.”
— Chris S (@chris121710) October 12, 2021
I am grateful to Mark Harmon for the years he dedicated to @NCIS_CBS. I am a die hard fan and watch reruns daily. It was time to give up working such a grueling schedule. I’m sad but ok. Enjoy! Hope to see Gibbs in flashbacks and cameos or remain as a consultant like Dr Mallard!
— Michelle Fiedler (@MichelleFiedl17) October 12, 2021
I don’t even have the words but I thank Mr. Harmon for these fabulous years of work. I love everyone still on NCIS so I will still be there every Monday night but I will be warching even more reuns than I currently do. Thank you
— Donna Quirk Moskal (@donna_moskal) October 12, 2021
Meanwhile, Diona Reasonover, who plays NCIS Forensic Specialist Kasie Hines, live-tweeted the episode, writing, “Only 10 mins in and I’m already tearing up.”
Only 10 mins in and I’m already tearing up. #NCIS
— Diona Reasonover (@DionaReasonover) October 12, 2021
However, while Harmon may be out as a series regular, viewers shouldn’t totally count out future appearances. “As an executive producer and dear friend, Mark continues to be an integral part of the fabric of the show,” said NCIS showrunner Steve Binder.
He continued: “Our north star has always been staying true to our characters, and that truth has always guided the stories we tell and where those characters go. So regarding the future of Gibbs, as long-time fans of the show may have noticed over the years…never count Leroy Jethro Gibbs out.”
Check out more reaction to Harmon’s exit below.
— Jennifer🚒🚑🚓 (@jayjay95a) October 12, 2021
Even thought we knew this was happening, it feels surreal and I still don’t think #NCIS will be the same. Others can come and go but Mark Harmon/Gibbs IS the foundation of NCIS https://t.co/aijRntsvWg
— ReeRee (@Grumma_Ree) October 12, 2021
Ncis family, let’s keep in mind: Mark Harmon runs the show here. Like, literally. Which means he signed off on this story line, Gibbs’ story line, Parker’s character, everything. Let’s have some faith this is all going to work out in the right way, ok? #NCIS
— Jane Doe (@WifeyNaija) October 12, 2021
End of an era. Thank you #MarkHarmon. The run has been an incredible one.
— MirageMasterXS 🏳️🌈 (Jacob) (@MirageMasterXS) October 12, 2021
The end of an era in television. TY #MarkHarmon 4 giving us the incredible gift of your talents, integrity, work ethic, kindness, passion & leadership. I hope you have many years ahead doing whatever you & Pam want to do. #SilverFox #TVicon #NoOneBetter #NCiS @NCIS_CBS
— Rox Rolls (@RoxRolls) October 12, 2021
NCIS, Mondays, 9/8c, CBS