Why Pauley Perrette's Final NCIS Episodes Will Be Extra Special, According To The Showrunners

pauley perrette ncis leaving

NCIS is gearing up for its Season 15 finale in May, but there are a few pretty important things the CBS drama needs to move past before that can happen. I'm speaking, of course, about longtime cast member Pauley Perrette's upcoming farewell to goth-leaning forensic scientist Abby Sciuto. The inspirational character's swan song is coming via a pair of episodes that are bound to make fans get teary-eyed, and showrunners Frank Cardea and George Schenck has revealed we might be in for a surprise, too.

For Abby's farewell, it was not only important that we pay tribute to this wonderful character, but that we give her a very special departure. Not only are there heartfelt and nostalgic moments, we have a very special reveal for the fans.

Giving Abby two episodes to bow out on is already a good way for NCIS' creative team to pay respects to a character that has been steadfast in primetime for 15 years. And with all that history and backstory to draw from, you can bet the creative team tried to pack as much in as possible. We'll likely get some flashbacks from older episodes, possibly with unseen moments from the past getting shown. Perhaps a big dinner table scene where the team talks about past cases and former team members.

We already expected there to be a lot of reminiscing, though, so that stuff will be emotional par for the course. The potentially more interesting element that the showrunners mentioned to TVLine is the "very special reveal" they've got cooked up. Abby's personal life hasn't seemed destined for any big changes, so wedding bells or pregnancy announcements aren't likely imminent. But how Abby leaves the NCIS unit might have something to do with it, since it could involve another job in an interesting location. Or perhaps a big life change that fans might not be expecting.

One thing is for sure, though. Regardless of what the reveal might be, we're just hoping it involves the return of a former cast member. Or several! We definitely shouldn't expect to see Cote de Pablo's Ziva David returning, since Ziva was killed off in the Season 13 finale. But what about Michael Weatherly's Tony DiNozzo? Or maybe even Sasha Alexander's Kate Todd (via flashback or hologram or something)? It all seems like a longshot, considering no news has come out about it yet, but it's a good time to remain optimistic.

Having finished her filming for Season 15 already, Pauley Perrette is now looking at a future without NCIS in it for the first time in a long time. (I mean, she might watch Season 16 when it airs.) Perette recently came out and said that she's still got some grief to get through in fully saying goodbye to Abby. However, she is somewhat happy to be freed from some of the elements that come with being a big-time CBS star.

NCIS airs Tuesday nights on CBS at 8:00 p.m. ET, with Pauley Perrette's final episodes airing on May 1 and May 8. To see when all the other big hits will be wrapping up their current seasons, head to our TV finales rundown, and then head to our summer premiere schedule to see what other shows are heading for your attention spans soon.

Nick Venable
Assistant Managing Editor

Nick is a Cajun Country native, and is often asked why he doesn't sound like that's the case. His love for his wife and daughters is almost equaled by his love of gasp-for-breath laughter and gasp-for-breath horror. A lifetime spent in the vicinity of a television screen led to his current dream job, as well as his knowledge of too many TV themes and ad jingles.