One ‘NCIS’ Star Just Dropped A Major Spoiler About Ziva’s Storyline In Season 17

NCIS star Wilmer Valderrama just dropped a major hint about Ziva’s (Cote de Pablo) storyline in Season 17. The cast of NCIS just finished with the first table reads for the new season and Valderrama shared a photo of the meeting on social media. Although de Pablo is not featured in the shot, the actor mentioned Ziva in the caption, teasing that she will play an important role in the Season 17 premiere of NCIS.

'NCIS' star Cote de Pablo
‘NCIS’ star Cote de Pablo | Photo by Sonja Flemming/CBS via Getty Images

What did Valderrama say about Ziva?

Valderrama’s photo included a look at several NCIS cast and crew members during the Season 17 table read. Well over half of the table is not featured in the photo, so it is difficult to say if de Pablo was involved in the proceedings.

Some stars that did make the shot include Timothy McGee (Sean Murray), Emily Wickersham (Ellie Bishop), and Rocky Carroll (Leon Vance). Despite her absence, NCIS fans were quick to speculate about de Pablo’s appearance next season, especially after reading Valderrama’s caption.

“Aaaaaaannnd we are back on set, the first table read for #NCIS Season 17th, “ Valderrama wrote. “This season premiere is

(One word.. Ziva).”

The actor did not offer any clarification on Ziva’s storyline, but it seems pretty clear that she will appear in the season opener. There is no telling how many times we will see Ziva in Season 17, but the post is certainly promising. According to Express, Valderrama’s caption could also mean that the Season 17 premiere will be titled “Ziva,” though producers have not confirmed or denied those rumors.

De Pablo reprised her role in the NCIS Season 16 finale of NCIS, though she only appeared in the final moments of the episode. The only character who has seen Ziva alive is Gibbs, a fact that will likely change in the upcoming season.

Valderrama also tagged Diona Reasonover (Kasie Hines), Maria Bello (Jack Sloane), and Brian Dietzen (Jimmy Palmer).

What about Michael Weatherly?

Although some fans were convinced that de Pablo was at the table read, others speculated that Michael Weatherly was also in attendance for the NCIS Season 17 meeting. Weatherly played the part of Tony DiNozzo, Ziva’s romantic interest, prior to his departure. The actor, who currently stars on the show, Bull, has not commented on returning to NCIS.

Also missing from the photo was Mark Harmon, who was undoubtedly at the reading in some capacity. Harmon plays the part of Gibbs on the hit crime procedural and also has the role of a producer.

Ziva’s cameo in Season 16 has led to a lot of speculation about Weatherly returning as DiNozzo. Depending on what happens with Ziva in Season 17, this could very well happen. After all, the two share a daughter together and it only makes sense that they would reunite once she comes out of hiding. It would, of course, depend on if Weatherly can make time in his busy schedule to shoot some scenes for NCIS. If he cannot return, then the show will likely reference him without giving him a scene. Either way, it will be interesting to see how the show handles his character’s story once Ziva is back in action.

‘NCIS’ teases Ziva’s return

Following her surprise appearance at the end of Season 16, NCIS showrunners teased that Ziva will play an important part in the series moving forward. Ziva’s brief appearance last season included telling Gibbs (Harmon) about a serious threat.

That storyline will likely continue at the start of Season 17 and could remain an important plot point throughout the season. This would allow Ziva to return periodically as the team attempts to get to the bottom of the new threat.

Valderrama’s recent post, meanwhile, is not the first mention of Ziva making an appearance in the Season 17 premiere. NCIS showrunners recently confirmed that de Pablo will have a part in the opener.

The showrunners, however, labeled de Pablo as a guest star, so it is a bit unclear if her role will expand to something more permanent before the season is out. Whatever happens, it is good to know that Ziva will have at least one more appearance on NCIS in the near future.

“We are thrilled to share that Cote de Pablo will guest star in the NCIS Season 17 premiere this Fall as Ziva’s warning to Gibbs unfolds,” NCIS showrunners shared.

Season 17 of NCIS is scheduled to premiere Sept. 24 on CBS.