Some major changes could be ahead for CBS. The network just announced the end of its highest rated series, The Big Bang Theory, leaving fans wondering if NCIS is next on the chopping block. The only thing that could save NCIS from cancellation are good ratings, which have unfortunately been on the decline.
The Season 16 premiere of NCIS witnessed a five percent drop in viewers since last year. Those numbers continued to slide in the second episode and are showing no signs of stopping. The 18-49 demo change is even worse: dropping over 10 percent since last season.
— Jessica Carter (@dangergirl101) October 9, 2018
There are a number of factors at play here, but one cause of the decrease could be Pauley Perrette’s departure after last season.
Perrette announced her exit at the end of Season 15. Her departure came amid rumors that she and Mark Harmon were feuding behind the scenes. The drama reportedly stemmed from an incident in 2016 involving Harmon’s dog. The actor brought the dog to work and the pooch bit a crew member, sending the person to the hospital for stitches.
Perrette approached Harmon about the incident and they allegedly got into a huge fight. From then on, the two avoided each other like the plague and even re-arranged their schedules so they wouldn’t have to see each other.
There’s something going on over on CBS NCIS too. Pauley Perrette quit and last we heard was just her tweets. pic.twitter.com/rfPrpWJo33
— Tori (@victoriarocksu) October 4, 2018
Despite all of the drama, Perrette and Harmon have not spoken publicly about the incident.
CBS has not said anything about its future plans for NCIS and it is unclear if the network is thinking about cancelling the series. Ratings, of course, are a big factor when deciding to cancel a show, and, according to TV Series Finale, the 18-49 demo is an important category when gauging performance.
If the ratings continue to slide, there is a very real possibility that NCIS will not live to see Season 17.