NCIS: Los Angeles’ Showrunner Teases How Linda Hunt’s Hetty Figures Into Season 14

linda hunt ncis: los anageles
(Image credit: CBS)

Now that Season 13 of NCIS: Los Angeles has come and gone, it’s time to set our sights on the upcoming 14th season. Although few details have been revealed in regard to storylines, showrunner and executive producer R. Scott Gemmill previously teased Linda Hunt’s return as Hetty Lange. Now, he’s previewing just what will bring her back into the mix in the new episodes.

R. Scott Gemmill discussed the end of NCIS: LA’s Season 13 finale and the upcoming season with TV Insider. Amongst the topics that were discussed was the highly-anticipated return of Hetty, whom fans haven’t seen since the beginning of Season 13. And based on Gemmill's comments, it would seem that the fan-favorite character  may need some serious help from her colleagues when we next see her:

Yes. I think we mentioned it early on, I think it was Kilbride [Gerald McRaney] who was saying it, that she had an operation, essentially two of her people who were in country were on the right track to expose someone within the Pentagon, in the intelligence community high up, that was a traitor, basically a mole, kind of like the fourth man. But before they can get out with proof of that, they are captured, and we don’t know if they’re captured because they know who they are or they’re just as captured as part of some of the problems are going over there. So ultimately, she went back to try and resolve that with the Keane [Jeff Kober] character, and then we haven’t heard from her since. So part of next season will be our guys finding out where she is, what happened, and probably having to go in and pull her out of the fire.

Hetty has been in Syria for an extended mission, and it sounds like fans will be getting a taste of that come Season 14. I'd wager that things are going to get somewhat dicey as the team attempts to locate their den mother. While I would've preferred a somewhat calmer homecoming for the character, this could pan out to be a compelling story arc.

Sadly, viewers haven’t seen Linda Hunt's Hetty as much over the last couple of seasons, for a number of reasons. The beloved actress suffered injuries from a car accident a few years ago and had to take a leave of absence. She then sat out during much of production during COVID. Eventually, she returned in the Season 12 finale and appeared again in the Season 13 premiere.

But while there have been various cast exits over NCIS: LA’s 13 seasons, Linda Hunt is still managing to appear on the show when she can. One does have to wonder just how many episodes the actress will show up in during Season 14. It's tough to say right now, but the fact that R. Scott Gemmill is teasing a big storyline for her character could indicate that Hunt will make a solid number of appearances.

Like Hetty and the actress who plays her, NCIS: LA is not slowing down. The series recently hit 300 episodes, which is a pretty huge feat. Chris O’Donnell and LL Cool J discussed the longevity of the procedural, noting that the fans who tune in every week are the reason for the show’s success. Let's hope that the show continues to deliver compelling stories, including ones that highlight the strengths of Linda Hunt's Hetty. 

Ahead of Hetty's return in Season 14, you can stream the latest season of NCIS: Los Angeles using a Paramount+ subscription.

Megan Behnke
Freelance TV News Writer

Passionate writer. Obsessed with anything and everything entertainment, specifically movies and television. Can get easily attached to fictional characters.