‘NCIS’ Season 14 News: Is The Gibbs Slap being Retired ?

Season 14 of CBS’ veteran drama ‘NCIS’ will welcome the biggest casting change on the veteran series in years. However, the core cast may not be the only major change coming this fall!

It’s no secret that the upcoming fourteenth season of CBS’ hit drama NCIS will look quite different. Original star Michael Weatherly has moved on to star in a new CBS drama and, as a result, the team will welcome three(!) new members come September. Among those new faces are Blue Bloods alumni Jennifer Esposito as Special Agent Alexandra “Alex” Quinn, Wilmer Valderrama’s Agent Nick Torres and Duane Henry’s MI6 Officer Clayton Reeves.

However, as we found out over the weekend during San Diego’s annual Comic-Con festivities, the cast may not be the only thing to change when Season 14 begins this fall! During TV Guide’s SDCC Fan Favorites panel, moderator Kevin Fraizer jokingly questioned Valderrama about one of NCIS‘ most iconic and beloved traditions, the”Gibbs Slap,” and whether his character Nick has been at the receiving end of Gibbs’ iconic slap to the back of the head yet.

“I think we’re going to develop our own little thing; the slap is Tony’s,” Valderrama revealed. “We’ve already gotten into each other’s faces in one of the scenes. I can’t tell you much about it, but Gibbs and I are butting heads already. There’s something that’s going to happen, but we already have like a little father/son kind of thing. I’m the black sheep of the family so far.”

Deep breaths everyone, deep breaths!  As hard as it may be to imagine a world where Gibbs doesn’t go around doling out head slaps to restore his team’s focus, Valderrama does have a point; the slap is Tony and Gibbs’ thing! Sure McGee has taken a few slaps to the back of the head over the years, but there is absolutely no denying that the “Gibbs Slap” truly only worked because of the dynamics of Tony and Gibbs’ relationship.

It seems only right that Agent Gibbs officially retire the head slap now that Tony has moved on to bigger and better things and as the series looks ahead to the next chapter in its story. This doesn’t necessarily have to be goodbye forever, but sidelining the “Gibbs Slap” and only pulling it out on a rare occasions may be just what is needed.

NCIS returns for its fourteenth season Tuesday, September 20 at 8/7c on CBS. Be sure to tune in!

Okay NCIS fans, time to weigh in on the discussion! Do you think the “Gibbs Slap” should be retired now that Michael Weatherly has left the series or should Gibbs keep doling out his signature head slap regardless? Keep the conversation going in the comments section below!