NCIS’ lovable Agent Timothy McGee wasn’t always meant to join the main team of agents, and he only became a series regular after only one episode.
NCIS season 19 is complete, and series 20 will premiere in a matter of months. Agent Timothy McGee (Sean Murray) will return to the CBS police procedural with the rest of the agents, tasked with solving difficult cases while juggling their personal lives. While fans couldn’t imagine NCIS without McGee, the actor was introduced as a guest star at first.
Prior to his time on NCIS, Murray was perhaps best known for his role as Thackery Binx in the iconic 1993 Hocus Pocus film.
In 2003, he made his first appearance on NCIS in season one, episode seven, Sub Rosa.
McGee was introduced as an extra character for the other agents to make fun of for one episode.
The actor wasn’t brought back on set until the running time of an episode needed to be extended.
Murray discussed the circumstances surrounding his joining the NCIS main cast on the Culture Pop Podcast.
“It was a one-time gig, a one-episode thing there,” he said, “but at the end, my character was a good guy, wasn’t a bad guy, wasn’t incarcerated, wasn’t d3ad, so that’s a good start to begin with.”
“They also implied that he was going to date or had already gone on a date with the Abby [Sciuto] character.”
“The character McGee wasn’t in that show, not in the next script, but they had finished filming that episode and were three minutes late.”
Murray went on to say that the creators decided to bring back McGee to fill in the gaps and build a small story around him and Agent Tony DiNozzo (Michael Weatherly).
He went on: “So I came back, we did that, it felt good, and then we started having only minor McGee appearances throughout the first season there.
“They were appearing one by one, each episode, progressively growing larger, and there was a sense of something really cool going on.
“I felt it, they [the writers] felt it, like there was a slice of pizza missing.”
“It was a character who could do and not do things that the other characters couldn’t – it was a whole different dynamic, he brought something fun.”
Murray had a particularly memorable season in Season 19 because he got to work with his daughter Cay Ryan Murray for the first time.
Cay played teenager Teagan, with whom Murray formed a bond in the episode The Brat Pack.
Murray has been the series’ longest-running full-time character since Agent Leroy Gibbs (played by Mark Harmon) left earlier in the series.
Donald “Ducky” Mallard (David McCallum) has technically been on NCIS since the beginning, but has taken a back seat in recent years.
CBS renewed NCIS for a 20th season earlier this year.
The network has since announced that it will launch on Monday, September 19.
NCIS Hawaii will also premiere its second season on this date, shortly after NCIS.
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