‘NCIS’ Season 18 Cast Shakeup Shows the Series Is Still Fixing a Major CBS Problem

NCIS has been on television for almost two decades now, and over the years, the show has garnered a huge fan base. Viewers love tuning in each week to see the crime-solving squad on their latest adventures, and the cast gives an amazing performance in each episode.

As one of the most-loved police drama shows on television currently, NCIS got its start in 2003 when another television show, JAG, introduced the Naval Criminal Investigative Service. The show provides viewers with a great mix of humor, drama, and action, as they investigate issues such as espionage, murder, and terrorism, with crimes involving the Navy and Marine Corps.

Mark Harmon and David McCallum on the set of NCIS | Patrick McElhenney/CBS via Getty Images
Mark Harmon and David McCallum | Patrick McElhenney/CBS via Getty Images

Over the years, we have seen a number of memorable episodes, and fans will surely agree that it is quite difficult to narrow it down to one favorite. But that doesn’t mean the show and its network are perfect. The NCIS Season 18 cast shakeup shows the series is working to fix a major CBS problem. 

CBS has been flagged for its lack of diversity

A 2016 USA Today “diversity report card” concluded that CBS fared the worst when it comes to inclusion, and the network is routinely called out for its diversity problem.

For NCIS, one exception is Cote de Pablo, the Chilean-born actor who played the role of Ziva David. Her character was Israeli.

RELATED: ‘NCIS’ Season 18: Cote de Pablo Reportedly Isn’t Returning, But Here’s Why Fans Might See More of Ziva David

Fans of NCIS absolutely adored De Pablo’s time on the show and loved watching her bring the character of David to life. David, who was an invaluable liaison officer, was a staple on the show from 2005 to 2013, and fans were sad to see her go.

Wilmer Valderrama joined the cast

One of the best additions to the cast was when Wilmer Valderrama came on board in 2016. Valderrama is extremely talented with many acting and production credits under his belt.

Until joining the cast of NCIS, Valderrama was best known for his work on the popular sitcom That ’70s Show, and his entrance as special agent Nick Torres was just what was needed. The actor is of Venezuelan and Colombian descent.

In fact, Valderrama himself has spoken about the importance of diversity on television, calling it a “major responsibility.” 

He told Entertainment Tonight: “[People of color] have a major responsibility in this moment in time to continue to create images that our younger generation can look up and say, ‘Hey, that’s me or that looks like me.’ Now, more than ever, we need to inspire these roles.”

Season 18 will introduce a new character

The new season will introduce Victoria Platt as agent Ronnie Tyler. She’s thus far just a guest star and not a lead.

So who exactly is Platt? Well, she is a New York City-born actor who is known for several guest-starring roles on shows, such as Criminal Minds, and CSI: Miami. Platt’s father is of Polish descent, and her mother is Bahamian, according to IMDb.