As previously reported, fans can expect to see a “significant” guest cast when NCIS finally says goodbye to Tony DiNizzo. NCIS showrunner, Gary Glasberg, said that many characters from the past and present will be on hand to say goodbye to Tony and Michael Weatherly as they leave the show. We know at least one character and actor who won’t be returning however. Cote de Pablo has confirmed that she won’t return to NCIS for the season 13 finale. Tony’s goodbye will be Ziva-less. 

Cote de Pablo dropped the bomb during a Q&A session following the filming of her new film The 33. A Twitter account devoted to the actress and her work broke the news in a tweet embedded below. 

There was very little reason given for why De Pablo won’t return as Ziva for the finale. However during the same Q&A session the actress opened up about why she left NCIS in the first place. She reportedly left the series because she felt the scripts weren’t “good enough” for Ziva. 

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“I love this character,” de Pablo explained. “You know, I worked 8 years crafting this character and loving her and so when I felt or perceived that the character was not being treated with the respect she deserved all the money in the world couldn’t bring me back.” The full context of Cote de Pablo‘s comments can be seen in the video embedded below:
While it is unfortunate that Tony won’t be seen interacting with Ziva in the finale, it’s not exactly surprising. The creative team behind NCIS has danced around Ziva possibly returning to say goodbye for months. The farthest the show has ever gone is saying that Tony’s exit will have to deal with Ziva in some respect. The fact that it was never officially announced that Ziva was returning was pretty good evidence it was never going to happen, considering how popular her return would be for the show.

But what do you think? Are you sad to learn that Cote de Pablo won’t return to NCIS? Are you surprised that Ziva isn’t coming back to say goodbye to Tony? Did you expect it to happen? Do you agree with her assessment that Ziva wasn’t being used well before she left the series? 

NCIS season 13 airs Tuesdays at 8pm on CBS.

(Image courtesy of CBS)

Derek Stauffer

Contributing Writer, BuddyTV

Derek is a Philadelphia based writer and unabashed TV and comic book junkie. The time he doesn’t spend over analyzing all things nerdy he is working on his resume to be the liaison to the Justice League.