The CBS television procedural, NCIS, has been on the air since 2003. The crime drama centers around agents in the Naval Criminal Investigative Service as they solve crimes, attempt to prevent terrorism, and protect secrets on behalf of the Navy and U.S. Marines. Despite the huge popularity of the long-running series, it has yet to win an Emmy Award. Mark Harmon, who played the lead role of Special Agent Leroy Jethro Gibbs for 19 seasons, never received a nomination. In fact, NCIS has only received three Emmy nominations, and only one was for acting.
‘NCIS’ has been renewed for Season 20
In its 10th season, NCIS beat out Sunday Night Football and American Idol to become the No. 1 show on network television. For the past 10 seasons, it hasn’t left the top three spot, which is an impressive feat for a show that has been running for so long.
According to Variety, NCIS was the most watched scripted television series of the 2021-2022 season with 10.97 million viewers. After Harmon left the show, fans were worried it would be the end. But his replacement, Agent Alden Park (Gary Cole) kept fans tuning in to the beloved series.
Newsweek reported that “Gibbs exit wasn’t the franchise killer that many feared it would be.” CBS Entertainment president Kelly Kahl confirmed season 20, saying NCIS is “one of the most popular and enduring series in the world.”
‘NCIS’ has only received 3 Emmy nominations
Despite its immense popularity, NCIS has only received three Emmy Award nominations.
In 2005, Charles Durning was nominated for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series for the NCIS episode of “Call of Silence,” in which he played Ernie Yost. In 2008, Diamond Farnsworth received an Emmy nod for Outstanding Stunt Coordination but did not win. He was nominated again in 2013 for his work on an episode titled “Revenge.”
None of the NCIS actors have ever been nominated for an Emmy. However, the show has won dozens of People Choice Awards. In 2017, Harmon received the People’s Choice Award for Favorite TV Crime Drama Actor.
Harmon is an Emmy nominee, however. He garnered nods for the 1977 ABC special Eleanor and Franklin: The White House Years and the 2002 NBC television series, The West Wing. He has never won.
How the stars feel about not being nominated
Traditionally, episodic television shows rarely get industry award recognition. Police procedurals like NCIS are under strict scrutiny from network regulators. So they’re less edgy and graphic than series found on streaming services such as Netflix. As a result, NCIS was once again left off this year’s list of Emmy nominees.
According to Looper, even though NCIS has been on the air for a long time, “people don’t necessarily rush to Twitter to talk about the latest episode.” The publication explains, “It’s a reliable staple on primetime television, but newer shows tend to grab Emmy voters’ attention.”
Rocky Carroll, who plays Director Leon Vance, doesn’t sweat it though. “I think of all the shows that have won multiple Emmys that are not on the air, that have run their course,” he told Entertainment Tonight. “I say that jokingly, but there are a lot of shows that have stood on the podium and accepted Emmys, but they’re in the ‘Where Are They Now?’ file. And we’re still here.”