NCIS employs a variety of strategies to keep viewers interested and engaged. Looking back over the past 19 (soon to be 20) seasons of NCIS, one of the most compelling storylines was former Special Agent Ziva David’s kidnapping. We’re here to explain why, as we await the return of the long-running CBS series.
Ziva David (played by actress Cote De Pablo) proved to be a talented spy and an even more intimidating k1ller from the moment she arrived in season three. It established her as one of NCIS fans’ most beloved characters of all time after she took her half-brother Ari’s life during that early episode in order to protect Gibbs. That could be one of the reasons why so many of us are drawn to her season six and seven storylines.
More importantly, ScreenRant claims that her capture in the Middle East, as well as the NCIS team’s subsequent rescue of her, demonstrate to viewers that she is more than just a dedicated and talented assassin and investigator. Above all, it demonstrates that she is a survivor. And we see it again and again after that.
NCIS producers purposefully do not show the torture and abuse Ziva endured while imprisoned in Somalia. However, it is this very fact that helps to better convey the mental and emotional trauma and turmoil she experiences afterward, particularly following her surprise season 16 return.
After becoming a ‘NCIS’ agent, Ziva’s values shift.
Ziva David’s season six arrest not only marked a change in her mental and emotional state, but it also set her on a new professional path. Previously serving as NCIS’s Mossad liaison officer, the team brings Ziva back from the Middle East and, eventually, she renounces her ties to her father and Mossad director Eli David and begins applying not only to be an NCIS agent but also to become a full-fledged US citizen.
According to the outlet, we later get a deeper look at the traumatic effects her early capture had on her when the team begins investigating what we soon learn is a case of domestic violence in season eight. In an attempt to persuade the v1ctim to talk about her abusive husband, Ziva reveals to her that she understands what it’s like to be a survivor and to have to “shut down” in order to keep moving forward.
Longtime NCIS viewers will recall that when Ziva first joined the agency, she stated unequivocally that she did not connect emotionally with v1ctims, particularly women. Eight years later, she not only overcomes that barrier, but she also lets down her guard for the benefit of someone else.
Ziva later revealed more depth after sharing a heartfelt goodbye with fellow former special agent Tony DiNozzo, before sh0cking everyone with her season 16 return to finally shed her past life as an agent and assassin and reunite with DiNozzo and their daughter Tali in season 17.
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