When Abigail Boren first walked into the offices at the Washington D.C. Navy Yard a dozen years ago, NCIS fans thought they had found a female version of Gibbs.
Boren was played by Diane Neal. She was the Coast Guard’s Investigational Service’s equivalent of Gibbs. Fans desired that Gibbs (Mark Harmon) date her. Or they debated whether Neal should have her own show on CBS.
In the NCIS universe, Neal appeared in nine episodes. Six occurred in the original series, while three occurred in the spinoff NCIS: New Orleans. Boren was a strong character each time he worked with the Naval agents. However, there was a lot of conflict in her very first episode, “Jurisdiction,” which aired in 2010. NCIS was looking into the d3ath of a Navy diver. However, the Coast Guard investigators were also summoned due to the d3ath of a boat captain.
Boren even gave Tony DiNozzo the patented Gibbs’ head slap when she first appeared in the DC offices. In contrast to Gibbs swatting Tony when he said something stupid, she thumped one of her agent’s heads.
When they first met, she also stood up to Gibbs. Nothing beats NCIS/CGIS agents getting all territorial.
“So, Gibbs, what’s your beef?” Abby expl0ded. “That I’m a Coast Guard officer, that I’m a woman, or that I got the jump on you in that house?” Boren finally brought the agents together when she dispatched her Coast Guard to apprehend a fugitive on a remote island.
So it’s no surprise that sentimental NCIS fans still wonder why she didn’t get her own show. They’d obviously be watching. There’s even a Reddit thread about it.
“Finally doing an NCIS NOLA Marathon,” Classic-Bowl-9940 wrote. “I’ve only been able to watch a few seasons at a time.” Anyway, I see Agent Borin appeared in a few episodes… Her character is fantastic. I wish there was a spinoff series with her as the main character. I know the actress had some issues with the producers and may have burned bridges….but a man can (and should) dream.”
Neal had a falling out with the producers of NCIS: New Orleans. She was concerned about her safety while filming in New Orleans. Rather than informing the producers first, she tweeted about her concerns. She didn’t hold back her thoughts.
The working conditions, according to Neal, were “dangerous and stupid.” She went on to say that the show “just (uses) me like a rented mule.” Furthermore, she stated that those in power “don’t give a damn.” She deleted the tweets, but not before they were saved by the Internet.
She apologized on Twitter and said she was removing her posts so Neal couldn’t delete them on the sly.
This occurred in the spring of 2015. Now, let us return to the present. When NCIS: Hawai’i premiered in 2021, one fan said he thought about Abby Boren again.
“Also, I was watching NCIS: Hawai’i and saw Vanessa Lachey lead a show. “I frequently consider the ‘what if’ question.” Lachey, as Jane Tennant, is the NCIS universe’s first female agent in command. So, if only Neal hadn’t tweeted?
Neal has appeared on other shows. She portrayed Casey Novak on Law & Order: SVU for 112 episodes. She portrayed an assistant district attorney assigned to the Sex Cr1mes Bureau on that long-running show. Her character also had to deal with strong-willed male characters. This was during Elliot Stabler’s prime.
Neal doesn’t do much acting these days. She was severely injured in a car accident and required extensive rehabilitation. She ran for Congress as an independent in New York in 2018. She is now the host of her own podcast.
However, a Coast Guard spinoff of NCIS seems like a fun idea.
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