Over the years, NCIS has seen many beloved characters come and go, including actor Muse Watson. But why did the former Mike Franks star leave the cop show..?
NCIS is one of television’s longest-running dramas, having aired on CBS for nearly two decades. Agent Leroy Gibbs (played by Mark Harmon) served as a mentor to many agents during this time period before departing in the 19th series. Mike Franks, his mentor, was instrumental in shaping him into the veteran agent that fans adore (Muse Watson).
Mike was a retired Marine who helped Gibbs in the beginning of his career.
Mike first appeared in flashbacks before making an actual appearance in the two-part season three finale, when Gibbs suffered amnesia as a result of a terr0rist att4ck bombing.
Mike appeared from time to time after that, assisting with investigations despite the fact that he had already retired from the job.
Unfortunately, when Mike was unexpectedly murd3red in season eight, fans were heartbroken.
Mike had revealed that he had terminal lung cancer, so his future was bleak.
So, when serial k1ller Jonas Cobb (Kerr Smith) was targeting former marines, he went to Gibbs’ house.
But Mike was there to stop him before he harmed his mentee.
During the scuffle, however, the k1ller fatally stabbed him in the chest in Swan Song before fleeing.
Why did Muse Watson, who played Mike Franks on NCIS, leave the show..?
The decision to leave NCIS was made by the CBS show’s creative team, not actor Watson.
When asked why he left by a fan on Twitter in 2012, the actor joked: “Because they wrote that I was stabbed with a [scalpel] by ONE young man. And, yes, I was packing.” (sic)
Watson had previously stated that he wasn’t entirely satisfied with how his character’s story ended.
He thought Mike’s exit storyline could have been developed further.
“To be fair, I think it sounded good in planning, but the way it played out – I think Mike needed more,” Watson told NCISfanatic.
“When it came down to a boy in the rain with a scalpel… it wasn’t enough to get Mike.”
Nonetheless, Watson has clearly remained on good terms with the show, as he has continued to appear.
Mike has appeared as Gibbs’ guardian angel on several occasions, the most recent in 2017.
Watson played The Creator in Amazon Prime’s Diary of a Lunatic in 2012.
According to his IMDb, he has a couple of other projects in the works that have yet to be announced.
These will be the films Christian Movie, in which he will play Pastor Gary, and Jubilee, about a young woman who uses music to “help her family escape the bondage of slavery in the American south.”
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