‘NCIS’ Fans Hope Ziva’s Return Is Only Temporary: Here’s Why

Cote de Pablo starred in NCIS from 2005 until 2013. For nine successful seasons, she played the former Mossad Agent Ziva David, who confused American idioms while taking down criminals in one swift motion. Though brought on to replaced Agent Todd — shoes many thought she would prove unable to fill — de Pablo quickly found her way into viewers’ hearts, becoming a fan-favorite virtually overnight.

Ziva David on NCIS Cote de Pablo
‘NCIS star Cote de Pablo |Photo by Jacopo Raule/Getty Images

When Cote de Pablo returned to NCIS in the final moments of season sixteen, much of the fan base issued a scream of excitement, as they jumped up from their couches. However, other NCIS enthusiasts issued a sigh of disappointment accompanied by an eye roll. 

Many NCIS viewers are not thrilled with Cote de Pablo’s return as Ziva David, and they argue that the show did not need her to thrive. If you read through various forums discussing the agent’s return, you will see that some fans are hoping for a temporary stay. 

Why some fans hope Cote de Pablo’s Ziva only returns to ‘NCIS’ for a little while 

Cote de Pablo may have been beloved when she was on the show, but many viewers feel the characterizations have improved since her departure. Speaking on behalf of the recent growth, one NCIS fan stated:

…I hope to christ she isnt coming back to the show full time. Its gotten so much better, bad writing notwithstanding, since she left. The annoyingness of the characters is at an all time low, the show really doesnt need her back.

Many NCIS fans note that the narratives have been quite weak, if not generally a bit less inspired than previous seasons. However, a large group of NCIS viewers feels that the show has improved in its depiction of the new characters, and doesn’t need to reintroduce an old cast member, which could easily present chaos. 

One fan argued that bringing back Ziva feels like a bit of a ploy, stating:

I do think this seasons episodes were much better than the 2 previous season’s episodes. Hopefully she’ll be back only to disappear again. Too much of a ploy to bring back the Zivabots.

NCIS fans go on to note that, given Cote de Pablo’s sudden departure, her return will likely be used to close up some loose ends and provide fans with some much-needed closure. She needs a way to say goodbye to Gibbs that feels more appropriate, and a return — even for a few episodes — may just do the trick. 

What if Cote de Pablo is back on ‘NCIS’ for the long haul?

If Cote de Pablo is back on NCIS for good, she will likely play a much more significant role than the aforementioned fans would like her to. Considering she departed the show and cited a lack of respect on her character’s behalf as a catalyst, de Pablo would be unlikely to return for a simple, inconsequential role. 

Many NCIS fans are wondering if the showrunners will bring back Michael Weatherly at the end, and set up a potential Ziva and Tony spin-off with the two former lovebirds (who now have a child together) at the center.