NCIS fans hoping Ziva and Tony might reunite onscreen, there might still be some hope. The CBS crime procedural finished its 2019 run with a twist-heavy fall finale featuring the return of Ziva David (Cote de Pablo) to finish her undercover mission, in hopes of finally getting back to her family.
While the hour did not include a surprise cameo from Tony (Michael Weatherly) as fans hoped, viewers found out Ziva and her former flame did speak during her absence, letting him know she was indeed not dead, and staying away to keep them safe.
With Ziva still set to appear in the upcoming winter premiere in 2020, fans still hope to see Ziva reunite with Tony and her daughter Tali on-screen. Series showrunners Frank Cardea and Steven Binder discussed the reveal of Tony knowing about Ziva, and seemed to hint at the possibility of a reunion for the two beloved characters this season.
"We were playing a game of Operation with this," Binger told TVInsider. "On the one hand, we wanted to see a reunion and we think the audience wants to see a reunion and if there has been a full-throated reunion in the past, that's a disservice to the storytelling on some level. On the other hand, when you're a co-parent, letting your co-parent believe you're dead is a pretty rough pill to swallow."
"We had split the difference and thought, 'What would really happen?'" he added. "She really believes her life is in jeopardy, she really believes she needs to stay undercover, so she doesn't tell anybody. But if Adam Eshel's going to know, Tony's going to know. Just because he knows doesn't mean they've been vacationing in the Caymans and hanging out and having a good ol' time.
"Just because he knows she's alive doesn't mean there's been a relationship there, which still gives us space to do a reunion," he concluded, leaving room for a possible appearance for Weatherly.
While they wouldn't give specifics, Cardea revealed the show will be "getting into some of that" in the winter premiere episode. With Ziva having changed so much in her time undercover, however, it might not be a complete exploration on the couple's relationship should there be a reunion.
"In terms of the effects on the relationship going forward, that's a trajectory that wouldn't be answered in one episode anyway," Binder said.
NCIS returns with new episodes Tuesday, Jan. 7 at 8 p.m. ET on CBS.