'NCIS' Diona Reasonover on Kasie's Conundrum, a Tough Scene With Gibbs & More

Institutionalized
Q&A
Erik Voake/CBS

NCIS gets very personal for Kasie in Tuesday's episode.

After a petty officer's son is found murdered at his "welcome home from prison" party, the evidence suggests her lifelong best friend, Dante Brown (Devale Ellis) is the suspect. "[It's a] big, huge emotional roller coaster," Diona Reasonover tells TV Insider.

On a more lighthearted note, the actress also reveals that a previous episode featured a cut Kasie and Terry (from the evidence garage) "flirtation." And while we have yet to see anything regarding her character's love life, she's hoping that changes.

Here, Reasonover previews Kasie's rough time in the "very rewarding" episode, "Institutionalized," and shares her thoughts on some of the show's relationships.

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In this episode, Kasie is in the middle of the case because her best friend is involved. What can you preview about the investigation?

Diona Reasonover: You get to see him get caught up in something that is maybe beyond his control but then we start to wonder about his involvement. You get to see Kasie really dive in. The cool thing about this is Kasie is not the kind of person who is great at socializing at work. She obviously has friends, but you see her a lot be like, "Okay, great, let's get down to business." Now that her personal life is crashing into her work life, it's a little bit frustrating for her. She's very flustered.

How does that change how Kasie goes about her work? It's her two lives mixing.

That's exactly the conundrum she's facing. She's like, "How do I go about this?" She's scared she'll get taken off the case. It's the first time she's had to have an emotional response to the case. We see a lot of the times the team just has that rule, "no personal involvement in the case," but this is a little bit unavoidable. She's the forensic scientist. She has to do this. But she's also like, "I want to believe my friend. Do I believe my friend?"

(Michael Yarish/CBS)

How does Kasie and Dante's relationship change during the investigation? Because if she has to suspect him...

It does change a lot because imagine if your friend was accused of something. The first thing you would do is stick up for them and of course believe everything's going to be fine but you're also watching your friend be arrested. It really puts her in a tough position because she trusts her team and she trusts her friend and somebody has to be wrong in this case.

You hope it's the team, but then you're like, "If it's the team, what am I doing with my work, what am I doing with my life? This is my friend. I thought I knew you. It turns out I don't." It's a really cool conundrum and I enjoyed having a chance to watch her be stuck between a rock and a hard place.

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Before this investigation, did she trust Dante implicitly?

Yes. They're like family, really. [Dante, played by] Devale Ellis, who did an incredible job, is someone who has been a little bit in and out of trouble before. Sometimes it's small stuff or you know that person's true heart. But this really challenges their relationship in a way that Kasie and he both did not expect.

Who does Kasie lean on? In the photos, we see her and Gibbs sitting on the steps during what looks like the arrest scene. 

She does trust Gibbs. It's hard for her to believe everything's going to be okay. Her concern really takes over. You do watch her try to do her best to confide in Gibbs, and that scene with Mark was great. I've never really had a scene like that. That scene really is us just sitting on the porch — I won't say whose — talking. You get to see their relationship growing and the mentor/young protege relationship they have. It's a tough scene for her. It was a tough scene to film.

(Erik Voake/CBS)

Are we going to get more Kasie/Ducky and Kasie/Palmer scenes? I so enjoy those relationships.

I love them, too! We will have some. They're really foundational to who Kasie is. David [McCallum] is really, really fun to work with and a really generous actor, so it's good to have those scenes where Kasie has such a good relationship with Ducky.

In recent episodes, we've gotten teases about Gibbs/Jack and Bishop/Torres. What do you and Kasie think about those relationships?

I think Kasie would be both fine with them and as long as they don't interfere with the case, probably not care. I'd like to think Kasie is very laissez faire about stuff like that: "Very cool, keep holding hands if you want, but can I give you this update or not?"

Diona is excited. Diona does ship a couple couples, but also I just love getting to watch the character development, both inside and outside of the potential relationships. I love every time we get another facet of a character thrown at us and we get to watch the actor deal with that.

I'm hoping we can get that with Kasie, say in more scenes with Jack. I think that would be an interesting dynamic to see.

I do, too. Kasie and Jack can be very diametrically opposed in their way of approaching something because Jack is very thoughtful and observant and a really good study of people. Kasie's not the best socially, but I like their dynamic a lot. I've only really gotten to shoot a couple scenes with Maria. It's always one of those scenes where we're in the middle of a case and it's rare for Jack to come down to the forensics lab because she's usually really busy.

(Monty Brinton/CBS)

I hope we get a girls' night episode where we get Bishop and Sloane and Kasie all in a room together, with some wine, maybe at a spa. I think it would be really fun to watch those personalities intersect because obviously they have a lot in common but they approach the work very differently.

Is there anything you're hoping to explore with Kasie this season?

I would like to see eventually a love interest. I'd be interested to see what her type is.

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That would be a different side of her to see, too, balancing that with her work life.

Exactly. And I think Kasie would be the kind of person where if you came up to Kasie at work and tried to give her a hug, she'd be like, "not now, running tests."

NCIS, Tuesdays, 8/7c, CBS