“Tim McGee is a very human and flawed character, but he has managed to rise above it”

Sean Murray stars in the series NCIS.
Kevin Lynch/CBS via Getty Images

By Lizeth Cadena, MWN

Metro recently spoke with actor Sean Murray about the new season of NCIS, and also his storybook history with the series and favorite moments after more than 15 years with the show.

We’ve seen Timothy being an investigator, a father, a husband… What side of him we will observe in this season?

I think we’re going to see a little more of his relationship with Gibbs, and we’re going to see a little more of his leadership. I actually feel like it’s about time because he’s a senior agent with a lot of skills that he can teach newer investigators. Plus, we’re going to see more of his family side, which honestly, is my favorite side of the man.

What was it like getting back to shooting after the COVID-19 lockdowns?

I remember the first day we started shooting: we arrived on set, we hadn’t seen each other for six months. We all looked completely different because we were wearing masks and had to follow the social distancing rules. 

It really wasn’t easy to start from scratch because you have 17 or 18 years of work in your head. How you walk from the dressing room to the set, or how you have breakfast with the whole crew… And everything changed all of a sudden. But well, once you get used to the rules it becomes easy, so we were able to get back to our own thing, work seamlessly and not get wrapped up in all that. We kept ourselves safe, and at the same time, we kept the story and its characters intact.

Do you have a favorite episode from all the seasons?

Yes. It’s from the first season. It’s called Dead Man Talking (Season 1, Episode 19. – Ed.). In the first few seasons of the show, you’re discovering the characters’ personalities, their strengths and weaknesses. And in that sense, that episode became the exact point at which the viewers, and even me, really started to get to know Tim. I think that’s why I hold it dear to my heart and mind.

Tim McGee is a clear favorite of the viewers. Why is that?

He’s a very human character, flawed, but he’s been able to rise above it. He started out as an unstable agent, that’s when Gibbs adopted him and he has certainly grown over the years. He is not perfect, which is why many love him and identify themselves with him.

Are you and Tim alike?

He’s not afraid to show that he doesn’t know certain things, he has a big heart, and he keeps his emotions in check. I think in those three aspects we are very much alike.

The show has a large and devoted fan base. Do you get any feedback from fans around the world or do you know about the relevance of the show outside the U.S.?

We know the show is quite popular, but it’s only when we go out into the world that we get to see that. I remember a trip to France a few years ago, I didn’t know how big it was, and I couldn’t believe how many people were outside my hotel. In Germany, I was also surprised with all those wild fans.

Is it true that Tim was supposed to appear only in the first episode in 2003?

Indeed, McGee was originally only a one-episode character. But well, they seemed to like me.

Since your character has been in the series since the first season and has evolved, how did the production shape you?

It did from all angles. It’s not about work, it’s about my life. I remember, for example, I was filming a scene when I got the call from my wife telling me she was in labor with my first child. Great moments of my existence have been on NCIS and with NCIS.

This is probably a strange question, but do you watch television? Are you a fan of any shows?

It’s funny, but I don’t really watch much TV and I like old stuff. For example, my favorite show of all time is Twin Peaks. I also have to confess that I really like reality shows because they are crazy and everyone is insane in those productions.

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