Although only DiNozzo returns in the Ducky tribute episode, NCIS season 21, episode 2, “The Stories We Leave Behind,” still honors the character’s legacy by acknowledging the people he worked closely with during his tenure as the medical examiner-turned-historian. Initially, the writers intended to bring back many old characters for Ducky’s funeral, but logistical challenges arose. Despite this, the episode successfully evokes nostalgia through flashbacks while mourning the loss of a beloved team member.

As McGee and Alden Parker delve into Ducky’s final case, a crucial clue is discovered in a secret safe hidden behind one of Dr. Mallard’s office photos. These photos feature various iterations of the active roster over the years, including the original cast with Cait and the latest lineup led by Parker. However, the vault is situated behind a photo depicting Gibbs, DiNozzo, McGee, Palmer, Ziva David, Abby, Leon Vance, and Ducky, subtly suggesting that they represent NCIS’ finest ensemble.

By chrysos