Cast turnover is a complication that affects most shows that run for upwards of a decade on television. Hit CBS drama NCIS has managed to hold onto some of its most important characters from the very beginning, but the upcoming departure of Michael Weatherly as Agent Anthony DiNozzo meant that big changes were on the way. Luckily, NCIS is working ahead to introduce some new characters to fill the ranks, and Weatherly is being replaced by two fresh faces, with the latest looking like he could be a dynamic new player. He’ll go by the name of Clayton, and he’ll be very different from DiNozzo.
Clayton is an MI-6 agent in his late 20s/early 30s who will be introduced in time for the Season 13 finale, according to a report from Showbiz 411. He won’t come quietly onto the show, and is described as loud, opinionated, and sarcastic. Throw in a dash of chauvinism and a short-tempered streak, and Clayton will likely be spicing things up in a big way. Luckily for those of us who aren’t necessarily super into watching temperamental chauvinists on a weekly basis, Clayton will also be a slightly left-of-center guy who is fun-loving and exhibits a confidence that's impossible to ignore.
The character will be physically fit and will bring his own brand of street smarts to NCIS. His ties to the intelligence community may not be entirely friendly considering his complicated history, and his unapologetic attitude may not help him to make any repairs. He wants the rest of the world to believe that he’s cool and detached, but he’s truthfully someone who cares more than most others. His status as a father will likely play into his hidden compassionate side.
There’s no news of any particular actors in the running, but producers are looking for someone who is British and of African descent to take on the role. Considering that Clayton has been described as having the body of an athlete and never denying a pretty lady his company, we can probably assume that he won’t be hard on the eyes.
Clayton is the second of the two characters to be announced who will be taking the place of Anthony DiNozzo. FBI Agent Tess is also set to make her debut at some point prior to the end of Season 13. Given that NCIS has been renewed for a fourteenth and a fifteenth season, both Clayton and Tess have the potential to be around for a while if they prove to be successful on the series.
The new characters certainly won’t make it any less rough to say goodbye to Michael Weatherly as DiNozzo after thirteen years on NCIS. Fortunately, Weatherly’s departure from the show appears amicable, and there’s no reason why he shouldn’t be able to return for a guest appearance or even cameo in the future. To see how NCIS wraps up DiNozzo’s plot in Season 13 and sets the stage for Clayton and Tess, tune into CBS on Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET for new episodes. In the meantime, check out our list of the 10 greatest NCIS guest stars for a star-studded trip down memory lane.