Mark Harmon, Gary Cole Fighting Over The Future Of ‘NCIS’?

side by side photos of Gary Cole in a suit and Mark Harmon in a leather jacket

Are Mark Harmon and Gary Cole fighting to be the top dog at NCIS? One report says the introduction of the veteran actor to the cast has already led to posturing and competition. Gossip Cop investigates.

‘Silver Fox Feud!’

According to the National Enquirer, Harmon is worried about losing the NCIS crown to Cole. An insider says, “Everyone knows Mark is burnt out and wants more balance in his life, but he’s not handling having another silver fox on the set very well.” Competition is apparently new to Harmon since he’s used to getting all the luxury goods he wants.

Executives are reportedly giving Cole the star treatment that Harmon’s grown used to, leaving Harmon anxious. A source says, “It’s really all Mark’s fault for saying he wanted less screen time.” Harmon wants to have a more limited role in the 19th season, and some speculate that he could be on the way out. Thus, the report indicates Cole’s been brought in to help lighten the load.

Securing Cole for the show was, a source says, “a major coup… meanwhile, Mark’s a bit of a prima donna who doesn’t socialize with many people on the set.” Cole’s addition shows Harmon where the show would go if he decided to leave. A source concludes that Cole would “be a fool not to seize the opportunity, and everyone thinks he will and should.”

What’s Going On With ‘NCIS’?

At different times in this story, Gary Cole is described as a “down-to-earth guy” who’s “already pushing [Harmon’s] buttons” and is planning a coup. The story acts like his addition was done for Harmon’s benefit, but apparently, they’re already fighting for screen time? This lack of consistency betrays that the Enquirer doesn’t really know what’s going.

It looks like Harmon’s workload is lightening for season 19, but only time will tell if that’s temporary or if he’s really planning to leave for good. Of course, it’s pretty common on NCIS to see cast members come and go, so there’s no reason why Cole’s addition would ruffle so many feathers.

Gossip Cop also needs to note that Harmon is still the head of this show. The Hollywood Reporter revealed that CBS was prepared to cancel NCIS if Harmon didn’t sign on to come back. So while he may be in fewer episodes, he’s still as big a power broker as ever.

Bearing this in mind, we don’t buy that he’d be livid over Cole. Harmon’s status as an executive producer means he’d likely have a say in Cole’s hiring as well, only making this story even less likely.

Other Bogus Stories

This is hardly the first time the Enquirer has whiffed on an NCIS story. However, this story of the novel conflict completely clashes with its previous story about Harmon feuding with Scott Bakula. Harmon apparently canceled a show he had a financial stake in strictly to stick it to Bakula. Gossip Cop didn’t buy it.

We’ve also seen this outlet promote that Harmon is leaving NCIS for some time now. It would have you believe that he has no friends on set and just wants to go home. These stories are uniformly false. If Harmon wanted to leave, he would not have come back for season 19. Time will tell if and when he decides to step away for good.

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