The popular CBS procedural drama NCIS was down a cast member after Pauley Perrette — who played forensic scientist Abby Sciuto — left the show at the end of Season 15. She had been part of the cast since the very first episode, and she left behind her mentor and partner in crime, Donald “Ducky” Mallard (David McCallum). He is still part of the show, but he will have less screen time because of the actor’s family commitments. So, producers came up with a solution to shake up the cast — they decided to make Diona Reasonover a full-time cast member.
Reasonover plays Kasie Hines, and she appeared in a few episodes last season, including the final two. The character is possibly the perfect replacement for Abby’s quirky goth scientist and could be the true inheritor of Ducky’s legacy.
The show originally introduced Kasie as Ducky’s research assistant, and her job was to simply keep Ducky on schedule while he wrote his book on forensics. But after Abby decided to leave after being shot in the line of duty, Leroy Gibbs (Mark Harmon) brought her into the NCIS team.
Showrunners Frank Cardea and Steven D. Binder told Variety that Kasie would be functionally filling Abby’s role as a forensic scientist, but they also plan for her character to be a new way for fans to relate to NCIS in Season 16. Instead of mimicking Abby’s attitude, Kasie is a newcomer with “unjaded enthusiasm” that will hopefully rub off on her co-workers, who are experienced and “somewhat hardened” federal agents.
According to the EconoTimes, producers are hoping that Kasie’s fresh perspective and enthusiasm will also infect both new and veteran viewers.
— Diona Reasonover (@DionaReasonover) July 19, 2018
Making such a significant change to the heart of the show does bring some unknown variables. With Kasie being so different from Abby, there is no way to know how everyone will receive her. But Cardea and Binder say she will “prove to be infectious,” and writing for her has major appeal.
Kasie is different from the others at NCIS because she comes from a different place, and she doesn’t understand the super-strict rules that come with being a federal agent. However, she is incredibly intelligent, and how she acts to the dramatic learning curve they will throw her into this season will be an interesting thing to see.
Season 16 of NCIS will premiere Tuesday, September 25th on CBS.