Judging by the fan reactions, NCIS will probably never be quite the same without Mark Harmon a.k.a. "Gibbs."
But the show will go on. The first episode since the "Gibbs" exit showed on Monday, and NCIS wasted little time in seemingly lining up a new boss for the team. Here's a recap of the new season 19 episode — spoilers follow!
NCIS recap: New team leader - "Parker" or "McGee"?
Now that "Gibbs" has left NCIS, the team needs a new boss. In the new episode, "Vance" makes the offer to former FBI agent "Alden Parker" (Gary Cole).
"Parker" tells "McGee," "Knight" and "Torres" that he turned the offer down, but a short time later he sticks around with the team on a case.
Meanwhile, "McGee" is said to have received the offer too — but it's unclear if he refused or simply took himself out of the running.
"McGee" explains that he doesn't want the paperwork, increased hours, and reduced field work that come with the position.
Later, "McGee" also reveals to the others that one factor above all influenced his decision: the fact that "Gibbs" shot him. (A dramatic moment in season 18.)
"I can't imagine pulling that trigger," admits "McGee." As a family man, too, he says he doesn't see himself as "that guy" for the team.
So, "Parker" has a clear path as team leader, and he appears to be on the verge of taking the job. "Vance" even suggests that "Gibbs" approves of the choice!
After the case gets resolved, it's revealed that "Parker" had been quietly and unofficially familiarizing himself with the agents on the investigation.
"Parker" says he was advised to take a secretive approach, but adds that he'll take the identity of his advisor "to the grave." Could that person really have been anyone other than "Gibbs"?
All signs are pointing to "Parker" becoming the new NCIS boss. Actor Gary Cole, 65, debuted in the role this season.