NCIS presented its latest spinoff, NCIS: New Orleans, as a two-part episode called "Crescent City." Now that both episodes have aired, it's obvious that the show has what it takes to be a series on its own and we've got five reasons to prove it.
Think the idea for putting an NCIS office in a city like New Orleans is one the writers just dreamed up out of the blue one day? Actually, the idea for both the office and the man running it came from real life.
NCIS executive producer Gary Glasberg told Inside EW how the idea for the series came about and how the show's current star had a hand in it.
"I had learned that there was this small office in the city of New Orleans — a real NCIS office — that this sort of fantastic, larger-than-life character/agent ran for 25 years. It was just him and a couple of other people — and that was it," Glasberg said. "And I wanted to do it as a sweeps episode, and then Mark [Harmon] said to me he thought there was more to it than that."
If you're not familiar with the legend known as Scott Bakula, he's the man who has starred in such great series as Looking, Enterprise, Desperate Housewives, Men of a Certain Age and the '90s classic, Quantum Leap. Bakula has the chops to play the leader of the New Orleans office and his character is right on par with the patriarchal Gibbs on the original series. He has the smooth-talking New Orleans accent down and, bonus, the guy can really sing.
In the two-part NCIS episode, viewers were introduced to Agent Pride (Bakula) and the rest of his team, including JAG alum Zoe McLellan as Agent Brody and Lucas Black as Agent LaSalle. The rest of Pride's team was rounded out by a wise coroner named Dr. Wade (CCH Pounder) and a forensic tech with a somewhat-zany personality and a strong interest in music.
While the construction of the team is similar — a wise leader, a charming second-in-command, a new woman on the team, a wise coroner and a zany forensic tech — the characters themselves and their dynamics are completely different from the original. Pride and LaSalle have an easy friendship/partnership that is fun to watch and Brody adds a fresh perspective as the newbie, both to the team and to the city.
When you have a show based in a city like New Orleans, there won't be any shortage of stories to tell or fantastic characters to watch. In just two episodes, the series already showed off some of the city's most interesting and vibrant locales. The people there are as fascinating as they are diverse and they are sure to give Pride and his team plenty of challenges and probably a ton of laughs as they conduct interviews. One little boy made a huge impression in the second episode of the two-parter and there would doubtless be many more like him if the show were to make it series.
Again, this is something that was only seen briefly in the two-part episode, but it was enough to whet the appetite for plenty more. Between the music heard on Bourbon Street and the jazz clubs, to the kind of music Wendell insists on listening to in his lab, this series could end up being the most musical of any other NCIS series. With Bakula's singing ability sitting in the wings to be used at any time, the show could also end up with a serenading team leader. How awesome would that be?
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