Is NCIS Actually Losing Katrina Law's Jessica Knight? The Showrunner Had A Very Tony DiNozzo-Related Response

 Knight talking to Jimmy on NCIS.
Knight talking to Jimmy on NCIS.

NCIS has had a revolving door of cast members throughout its 21-season run, but it never gets easier saying goodbye to a beloved character. After the Season 21 finale set up the latest potential exit with Katrina Law’s Jessica Knight, people are wondering what it really means. While her official departure has yet to be confirmed, co-showrunner Steven D. Binder weighed in on the matter. And his response to rumors would make Tony DiNozzo proud.

In the Season 21 finale, it was revealed that Knight had been offered the chief training officer for the REACT team at Camp Pendleton on the other side of the country. After much thought, a tense talk with Jimmy, and a near-death experience, Knight told Director Vance she accepted the job. Even though Steven D. Binder is still not giving a straight answer on Law’s status for the upcoming season, he did tell TVLine that it could basically go in any direction:

Well, you know, we’ve set something up there, and I will point you toward our track record where ‘You never know.’ We’ve had people look like they were going away, and then it’s found out they weren’t going away, and then people who just disappear like Gibbs.

After over 20 seasons, NCIS still manages to be unpredictable, and the comments the producer shared are definitely right. You never know what could happen with a character and, even if they briefly leave, they sometimes end up coming back. That's certainly true when it comes to this situation with Knight. Even though she did take the REACT job, there's a possibility that she could still stay in the fold somehow, the character could be written out entirely. Because of that, Steven D. Binder shared that he tries to match the exit of Michael Weatherly’s DiNozzo, and it makes complete sense:

We’re really trying to follow what I call ‘the Tony DiNozzo departure’ where, in his case, he actually did leave the show, but you ask yourself, ‘What would it take to get a certain character away?’ In the case of Tony DiNozzo, we thought he wouldn’t be going anywhere — except for a child, and suddenly, that’s the motive that would make him leave. And to get [Knight] to leave this team, it’s a combination of a thing that she had applied for and wanted to do — she’s talked about the plan with her father — and then having this relationship with Jimmy where suddenly things are in flux in a way that it makes it easier for her to say goodbye.

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It's safe to say that DiNozzo would surely appreciate the sentiments above, and those are good points as well. Especially after reuniting with her father earlier in the season, Knight seemed adamant about staying with the D.C. team. There's also the fact that her relationship with Jimmy is starting to get more serious. Being placed with another REACT team and possibly even getting the closure she needed when she lost her own team could be just what she needs. It’s also a good way for the show to bring that storyline back around and remind viewers why Knight’s on the team in the first place.

That being said, since there isn’t much known about Season 22, it’s hard to say what direction NCIS will go in when it comes to Jessica Knight and Katrina Law’s future on the show. Luckily, whatever happens, Steven D. Binder promises that it will be satisfying:

So, I will say this. We do aim to please, and we think the audience will be satisfied with where they see this go. Sometimes, that satisfaction is bittersweet, and sometimes, it’s just pure joy. You’ll have to wait to find out which one it’s going to be.

Ever since Katrina Law joined NCIS in Season 18 (eventually becoming a regular in Season 19), she’s been a big asset to the team. It was really just a matter of time before REACT was brought back up, though, and it makes sense that the reason she’d want to leave the team is to go back to REACT. While it would certainly be heartbreaking to say goodbye to her, there is always the possibility that Knight’s job will only be temporary or she ends up backing out for some reason. Fans will just have to watch the series later this year when it returns to the 2024 TV schedule in the fall. In the meantime, stream other episodes using a Paramount+ subscription.