NCIS' Cote De Pablo Just Made Ziva And Tony's Reunion Sound A Lot Less Likely

ziva ncis season 17 premiere
(Image credit: cbs press)

NCIS is gearing up for one of its most headline-worthy premieres yet for Season 17, thanks to the high-profile return of former star Cote de Pablo, who is reprising the role of Ziva David. It will mark the actress' first return to the role since her exit in Season 11, where her final moments with Michael Weatherly's Tony DiNozzo left fans wondering if the characters would ever share the screen again.

Though Code de Pablo's multi-episode return got lots of fans' hopes up for an onscreen "Tiva" reunion in Season 17, nothing has been confirmed, and Ziva herself has seemingly rained on that parade. When asked about chances of seeing Tony again, here's how both star Mark Harmon and de Pablo answered:

Harmon: [Laughs.] Maybe. Michael is a little busy at the moment. De Pablo: He's shooting a procedural. I don't think Ziva and Tony have seen each other or communicated in a long time. Tali was delivered to him [by Mossad], and that was the end of it. Don't ask any questions, dot-dot-dot, to be continued.

To play the devil's advocate, I'd like to now read way too much into Cote de Pablo's answer for just a second. While Mark Harmon sets up a slight tease to TV Insider, de Pablo follows up by saying Michael Weatherly is "shooting a procedural."

Nothing incorrect about that, since Michael Weatherly is currently filming on Bull, which got renewed for Season 4 following allegations made against the actor by former Bull star Eliza Dushku. But it feels purposefully dry and distant to state that he's shooting a procedural, as opposed to something like, "He's got his own TV show," or "He's currently filming Bull."

bull season 4 michael weatherly

Then, Cote de Pablo drops an infobomb that Ziva and Tony likely haven't talked in a long time, possibly meaning since even before he took custody of Tali. So if they haven't spoken, it's likely for a reason: namely, Ziva would die for the safety of their kid. That's also part of why she returned to Washington, and back into Gibbs' life (and basement).

But what exactly did she mean by don't ask any questions, dot dot dot, to be continued? It's clear what she meant within the context of Tony not asking Mossad about any details. But what exactly is going to be continued? Will it be continued on the show with an on-screen appearance or phone call?

Granted, she does say "I don't think" when answering that question, so that kind of throws everything she said about Ziva and Tony's lack of contact into the wind. Until the show comes back for Season 17 and proves stuff right or wrong, fans can basically dream up whatever scenario they want

Here's what Cote de Pablo said when asked how dangerous this season really is:

We are very much in danger. The only way to justify Ziva [possibly] breaking cover and jeopardizing herself and the people at NCIS was to make the threat absolutely real. She lost her father, so she feels responsible for her father figure, Gibbs, and has to save him. She's also trying to keep her daughter a secret and safe from the people who are trying to get to Gibbs and to her.

Going by that explanation, it sounds like the safest place for Tony and their daughter to be is on the opposite side of the earth from Ziva and the people who are trying to kill her. Gibbs...well, Gibbs is probably fine in any situation.

Check out what will happen in the Season 17 premiere when NCIS returns to CBS with new episodes on Tuesday, September 24, at 8:00 p.m.

Nick Venable
Assistant Managing Editor

Nick is a Cajun Country native and an Assistant Managing Editor with a focus on TV and features. His humble origin story with CinemaBlend began all the way back in the pre-streaming era, circa 2009, as a freelancing DVD reviewer and TV recapper.  Nick leapfrogged over to the small screen to cover more and more television news and interviews, eventually taking over the section for the current era and covering topics like Yellowstone, The Walking Dead and horror. Born in Louisiana and currently living in Texas — Who Dat Nation over America’s Team all day, all night — Nick spent several years in the hospitality industry, and also worked as a 911 operator. If you ever happened to hear his music or read his comics/short stories, you have his sympathy.