With the announcement that Cote de Pablo would be leaving the show, NCIS started Season 11 with more than a few challenges to overcome. First, the writers had to figure out the best way to say goodbye to the beloved Ziva and then they had to find the perfect replacement for her on the team. They also had to give the rest of the regular characters plenty of good stories to work with.
Two of those characters seem to have found a new level of friendship and partnership in the midst of the chaos: Tony and McGee.
Tony (Michael Weatherly) was caught up in the whirlwind of Ziva's journey as she came to the realization that she no longer wanted to be an NCIS agent. Seeking some time to reflect, she disappeared for a while, which sent Tony out looking for her. Once he found her, the two had no choice but to confront the affection that had been percolating between them since the first moment she sauntered into the offices of NCIS and they shared some sexy banter.
For years, Tony and Ziva danced around how they really felt about each other until finally (finally!) they had the talk (and the kiss!) that many fans had been waiting for. But though they acknowledged how they felt, they also decided to go their separate ways and move on. Tony returned home a somewhat broken man and this season has seen him making changes in himself. He started going to group therapy and opening up in an environment of other men, which seemed to help him a lot.
McGee (Sean Murray) has also had a rough time of it this season. He began a serious relationship with a woman and was seen struggling to figure out how to make that work with the demands of his job. Then the unthinkable happened and his girlfriend, Delilah, was seriously injured in a bomb blast that left her paralyzed.
In the beginning, Tony and McGee's relationship consisted mostly of making each other crazy. Tony hazed McGee as the new probie and McGee used his knowledge to make Tony look like a fool. It was a game of back-and-forth that went on for years and, at times, even became vicious.
After Ziva left the team, a change became evident in Tony and McGee's relationship. Perhaps feeling the need to cling onto each other after losing one of their own, they were seen talking more and sharing their feelings. Sure, there was still the banter and joking that had always been there, but there was something else, too.
The friendship that had always been there began to blossom and in recent episodes, such as "Monsters and Men," their bromance was truly something to behold. Tony asked McGee to lean on him when he saw that his friend was struggling and McGee opened up about his thoughts on Delilah's plight. It was truly a great moment on NCIS and hopefully it foretells of many more to come.
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