'NCIS': Wilmer Valderrama Reacts to Ziva's Return

Wilmer Valderrama is just as excited as fans about Ziva David's return to NCIS.

The actor behind Nick Torres on the CBS crime procedural celebrated the return of Cote de Pablo's character shortly after the big Season 16 finale cliffhanger aired.

"This is not a drill everyone. Welcome home #Ziva. People... see you all season 17," Valderrama wrote in the post, featuring the moment Ziva walked into Gibbs' (Mark Harmon) basement and some with her former boss for the first time.

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"Hello Gibbs. No time for pleasantries. You're in danger," Ziva said to a stunned Gibbs.

After the pair stand quietly simply staring at each other, Ziva breaks the ice saying: "Well, aren't you going to say something?"

Gibbs stays in shock and simply says her name before the episode ends.

Fans of the long-running CBS show took to the comments section to share their excitement for the big twist.

"CAN YOU HEAR THE FANS SCREAMING!?!?!?!?" One user commented.

"I waited years for this moment! That's why I never gave up on watching this show, even after so many changes! Now it's all worth it!!! Ziva is back!!!!" Another user commented.

A third user wrote: "This was the biggest cliffhanger in all 16 years of this show, Jesus Christ."

"I totally gave my mom a heart attack from screaming when I saw this," Another one commented.

NCIS producers went the extra mile to keep the secret of Ziva's return until the episode aired, keeping the final scene out of the script and filming it in the middle of the night.

Showrunners Frank Cardea and Steven D. Binder had copies of the scene and filmed at midnight with only a smaller crew.

"This surprise moment is just the beginning. We are thrilled to share that Cote de Pablo will guest star in the NCIS Season 17 premiere this Fall as Ziva's warning to Gibbs unfolds," the writers said in a statement after the episode aired.

The actress is not expected to return to the show as a series regular in Season 17, meaning fans will enjoy a closed case at the beginning of next season.


Ziva first exited the series in 2013, and her character was supposedly killed off later on to set up the exit of his love interest, Anthony DiNozzo (Michael Weatherly). The series had hinted at Ziva being alive earlier in the season, after Bishop (Emily Wickersham) found a letter from the supposedly dead former agent.

NCIS will come back for Season 17 in fall 2019 on CBS.