‘NCIS’: How Badly Do Fans Want Mark Harmon to Stay on the Show?

Mark Harmon has played the role of Agent Gibbs on NCIS since the very beginning of the show. While plenty of people have continued in roles throughout the duration of a television series’ run (like the cast of Friends, for example), there is something to be said about doing so for well over a decade.

Thanks to his long time on the show, and the skill with which he portrays his character, Harmon has become integral to the show’s overall success. Fans agree that NCIS just wouldn’t be the same without him… and that’s a lot of fans. In its 16th season on television, NCIS is averaging around 12 million viewers per episode. The craziest part is when you realize that NCIS almost didn’t even make it to television. 

A feud almost ended ‘NCIS’ and Harmon

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Gather around everyone- new episode of #NCIS Tuesday Night!

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A lot of NCIS fans aren’t only glad that the show made it to television, but that Harmon ended up playing such a vital role. That was yet another thing which almost didn’t happen, all thanks to an ongoing feud between Harmon and the show’s original creator, Donald Bellisario.

Bellisario is the mastermind behind a lot of incredibly popular television series besides NCIS. He is the man responsible for creating JAG, Battlestar Galactica, Magnum P.I., Airwolf, and Quantum Leap. Since Bellisario is obviously a genius, then what was the big deal? Harmon had an issue with what he called a “chaotic management style.” 

Bellisario was reportedly working his staff and stars so hard that it was causing people to quit. Some say that the cast and crew worked exceedingly long days, six days a week, for months on end. That kind of schedule would be enough to make even the toughest of people quit — and Harmon wasn’t happy about it. Eventually, Harmon came out on top of the feud and, although he still retains writing credits, Bellisario was forced to walk away from actively managing the show.

Is Mark Harmon leaving NCIS?

There have been some rumors recently that Harmon was set to leave the show. Thankfully for viewers, however, those rumors have been proven false. Harmon himself spoke out against the rumors, stating that “nothing goes on forever, but you’ve got to respect what this show is doing, 16 years in, and how it’s doing it… There’s a tremendous about of pride there, so I see no reason to leave.”

How important is Harmon really?

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What a great team ❤️ #ncis #team

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Everyone knows that Harmon is the leading star of the show. While there are a lot of other central characters, he has been on NCIS the longest and holds the position of power in the overall plot. But that isn’t as far as his importance goes.

Harmon is also an executive producer for the show, which means he has a considerable amount of say over what happens and what doesn’t. In fact, Harmon is so important that he’s able to procure a $525,000 salary per episode for his acting alone. That doesn’t include what he may get paid for his position as executive producer. 

Is ‘NCIS’ ending any time soon?

Many fans worry that NCIS might be coming to a close soon — especially since it’s already in its 16th season and many shows can’t hold out that long. But Harmon had something to say about this, also. According to him, “we’re not there yet.”

How will Harmon know when it’s time for the show to finally end? He says that he’s “always thought if there’s ever a time where the writers are walking into the room and going ‘I don’t know what to do,’ then I think we all have to look at each other and call it a day.”