NCIS ended Season 18 with a major cast shakeup. After Pauley Perrette exited the series in 2018, and just weeks after Maria Bello's Jack Sloane's departure, the CBS police procedural left fans in a state of shock when yet another character exited the series in the final moments of the NCIS Season 18 finale. Warning: This post contains major spoilers for NCIS Season 18, Episode 16, "Rule 91."
At the end of Tuesday night's episode, fans had to say goodbye to Emily Wickersham's Special Agent Ellie Bishop. Bishop was forced to leave the team after NSA documents detailing an operation where the U.S. used Syrian refugees to lure terrorists out of hiding leaked. A back-trace on who leaked the documents turned up Bishop's name, and Bishop admitted to Director Vance (Rocky Carroll) that she was the one who leaked the highly confidential files. Although she said she felt guilty for betraying her co-workers, she admitted that she regretted not leaking the files sooner.
Wickersham's abrupt exit from the series, which some fans had speculated was potentially coming, left many fans in a state of shock. As the end credits rolled for the final time this season, many viewers turned to social media to react. Keep scrolling to see what they had to say about the shakeup.
After the episode aired, Wickersham confirmed her departure in an Instagram post. Sharing a behind-the-scenes photo of herself in character, the actress said she was officially "hangin this hat and jacket up." The actress went on to call her time on NCIS "a great ride."prevnext
I’m in denial. @NCIS_CBS #ncis— Catherine (@ThisIsTheFitz) May 26, 2021
Thank you @EmilyWickersham for creating such an amazing character - one that inspired me to pursue a career in intelligence myself. Fans will miss you, but I think I speak for all of us when I say there’s only one Ellie Bishop pic.twitter.com/GVKfXIJLU3
"This cast, this crew, are top notch. I can't say enough kind words about this group that I;ve had the pleasure of working with for close to 8 years now and 172 episodes later," Wickersham continued in the post. "This business is finicky and weird and consistency is a rarity. I've been lucky enough to be a part of a show where I got to show up and act and laugh and learn with wonderful people."prevnext
Sharing that her years on the CBS series will be "a moment in time I surely won't forget,' the actress extended her thanks to "CBS and NCIS for including me in a part of television history." She ended the post by writing, "Time goes fast. Eat it up but chew slowly."prevnext
Ellie Bishop really left and I'm going with her, Thanks @NCIS_CBS for the good and bad times but today I stop watching one of my favorite series because they have broken my heart again.💔💔💔💔 #NCIS pic.twitter.com/jC2j1YAZnN— Camila Alvarado (@CamiAlvarado73) May 26, 2021
That post drew a flurry of responses, including from Wickersham's NCIS co-star Brian Dietzne, who plays Jimmy. Taking to the comments section of the post, Dietzne wrote, "So d– proud of you my friend. Also, I'm gonna miss the hell outta you on set. I can't wait to see what you do next. Whatever it is, I'll be there in the front row." Kasie Hines actress Diona Reasonover also chimed in, commenting, "Thank you for everything, friend."prevnext
OMG!!! I was not prepared for those last few minutes of @NCIS_CBS!!! Bishop can’t FINALLY kiss Torres and then leave! Gibbs can’t die either!! We need them both for Season 19!! It’s going to be a very long summer. #NCIS— Laura Navins ✌🏽✌🏻 (@laura_navins) May 26, 2021
Wickersham first joined NCIS back in 2011, starring as Ellie Bishop across more than 100 episodes before her exit in the Season 18 finale. She joined the series just after Cote de Pablo's final episodes as Ziva David.prevnext
NO I'M DONE WITH #NCIS, the only reason I started the show was for Ellie Bishop and now she's gone?????— jess loves ellie bishop💚 (@keensrollins) May 26, 2021
Wickersham is just the latest star to exit the series. In 2018, Pauley Perrette, who starred as Abby Scuito, departed the series. Earlier in Season 18, Maria Bello's Jack Sloane officially left the series, with her character choosing to stay in Afghanistan to continue her friend's humanitarian work.prevnext
Despite the awful season finale and Ellie's character arc being ruined, Emily did a wonderful job acting. I'll miss her so much, but I'm thankful she gave us 8 years of NCIS Special Agent Eleanor Bishop ❤️ pic.twitter.com/WDWTFMfsWq— Tee is CLOSED (@charminteepee) May 26, 2021
With Season 18 now over, fans can get excited for a new batch of episodes. CBS confirmed in April that NCIS will return for Season 19, with star Mark Harmon set to return in the lead role of Leroy Jethro Gibbs.prev