When a recent NCIS Season 20 promo teased a plotline concerning an undercover case that went deadly, viewers became concerned for Wilmer Valderrama's Nick Torres.
"Monday night just got a whole lot more intense — Torres is playing with fire, and nothing is as it seems," said the caption of one of the clips.
Actually, this isn't the first time that rumors about Valderrama's departure have surfaced. Fans are nonetheless naturally concerned.
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By the end of the episode, their concerns about Torres' future were allayed because he did live. Fans, however, began to question if Valderrama was genuinely being gradually replaced with the appearance of an old buddy.
Is Wilmer Valderrama Leaving After NCIS Season 20?
Zane Holtz reprised his role as Torres' rival Special Agent Dale Sawyer in NCIS Season 20 Episode 12. To take down a drug-dealing ring with whom Sawyer had intimate personal links, the two had to put aside their antagonism and work together.
The whole NCIS crew was welcoming Sawyer for his participation in the undercover operation by the end of the episode, and this newfound welcome had fans buzzing.
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A Constant Figure in the Exit Rumor Mill
After it was revealed that Valderrama had won another role, rumors of his potential departure from NCIS circulated online a year ago. The actor will portray Don Diego de la Vega, also known as Zorro, in a new adaptation of the classic ABC program. But because the show is still in the planning stages, Valderrama is still a part of NCIS.
When his co-star Brian Dietzen (Jimmy Palmer) hinted at Valderrama's departure in an Instagram post before the end of 2022, suspicions started to circulate once more.
"Damn that's a good looking team! Wait… where's Torres? This looks like it's gonna be a good one folks! (AND Ducky's back!) New episode of #NCIS Monday 9/8c on CBS!" Dietzen wrote in the caption.
Valderrama actually responded with a crying emoji, which fueled further fan curiosity. However, no official exit announcements have been issued so far.
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NCIS airs Mondays on CBS.