'NCIS' Poll: Are You Sad Jennifer Esposito Is Leaving After Only One Season?
'NCIS' Poll: Are You Sad Jennifer Esposito Is Leaving After Only One Season?
Meredith Jacobs
Meredith Jacobs
Contributing Writer, BuddyTV
NCIS ended up bringing on three new series regulars in season 14 after Michael Weatherly left, leading to quite a full team, even with one only working with them sometimes, but that's not going to continue in season 15. That's a good thing, because something had to change, but did Alex Quinn have to be the one to go?

Sadly, that's going to be the case, as Jennifer Esposito is leaving the CBS drama after only one season as a series regular. At least it's likely they won't be killing her off.

Jennifer Esposito Is Leaving NCIS>>>

Someone Had to Go, But Did It Have to Be Quinn?

At times, it seemed like season 14 was all about the new instead of the already established, and that was because there was so much that was new. With three new regulars -- Esposito's Quinn, Wilmer Valderrama's Torres and Duane Henry's Reeves -- not everyone could stay for season 15 without likely running into the same problems that came with too many people around. Sure, they had Reeves working part-time with the team, but he ended up being the best of the new bunch.

However, Quinn wasn't the worst of the new regulars, so it is going to be sad to see her go. She brought her experience both in the field -- and her time with Gibbs' team allowed her to get some closure regarding why she left field work -- and as an instructor, which allowed her to know her teammates' strengths and weaknesses from their time in FLETC. It's been great to have another female agent in the field with Bishop, and it is going to be a shame to lose that.

And while Quinn may have been an instructor before returning to field work, she seemed to fit in better and work better with a team than Torres, who preferred his undercover, lone wolf work. (Even Reeves, who, prior to working with NCIS and Gibbs' team, was the one to volunteer for high-risk missions, seemed to fit in better -- or at least be willing to try to fit in -- with a group that became a family than Torres.)

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Time to Refocus on the "Old" After Too Much Time on the New

While Quinn wouldn't have been my first pick to go, it's hard not to be okay with one of the new characters leaving. Hopefully this means that season 15 will return the focus to those who have been there for years, especially since season 14 did a pretty good job of exploring all three new characters, both on the job and off.

In fact, it's easy to see why Quinn wasn't necessarily a character who would stick around. (Following the news of her departure, Esposito tweeted, "Was not meant to be there long.") We got to know her as an instructor through conversations with the rest of the team. We found out why she left field work and saw her get closure. We saw some of her personal life, through meeting her mother and the others wondering if something happened between her and Torres in the past. That's quite a bit to learn about a new character over one season when it took multiple seasons to find out about others over the course of the show.

There Are Multiple Ways to Write Her Out -- and Not for Good

Since the major season 14 finale cliffhanger saw Gibbs and McGee left behind in Paraguay, facing rebels and fighting for their lives, it seems very unlikely that NCIS is going to kill off Quinn. (It's hard to see them going for an out-of-nowhere off-screen death with that needing to be resolved.)

Instead, it seems more likely that her departure will be a quiet one, and after all the time spent on the new in season 14, that's probably for the best with the two field agents who have been around the longest stranded in another country.

Quinn could decide to go back to being an instructor, perhaps after being reminded of the dangers of field work with the position Gibbs and McGee are in or for some other reason. However, because of that cliffhanger, there does have to be something else to explain her absence as the team works to rescue them, so it's likely that's where the calls from her mother will come in. After all, there has to be a reason why Quinn's mother was introduced and why she got those calls.

What do you think? Are you going to miss Alex Quinn? What are you hoping to see in NCIS season 15? Let us know in the comments!

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(Image courtesy of CBS)