Hacks & cracks

There’s no time for par­ty­ing when NCIS: New Or­leans re­turns: sea­son 3 has killers, kid­nap­pers and work­place ro­mance.

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NCIS: New Or­leans Sea­son 3 Thurs­day (from 27 July) M-Net (*101) 19:30

There’s no time for fool­ing around when Agent Pride (Scott Bakula) and his team take up arms again in ac­tion fran­chise NCIS: New Or­leans (2014- cur­rent). “I’ve told peo­ple that it’s go­ing to be the same but dif­fer­ent [to the first sea­sons],” laughs the 62year-old. “I’ve been here for two sea­sons and I’ll say it again, I’ve never been a part of any­thing as wildly suc­cess­ful as this show!” And it isn’t just pop­u­lar­ity with fans that’s wild – the sto­ry­lines are all over the place!

CRACK­ING AT THE SEAMS

The big­gest change is that

Brody (Zoe McLellan) isn’t around any­more. “The team strug­gle with Brody’s sud­den de­par­ture,” says an in­sider, but in re­al­ity ac­tress Zoe was let go by the show bosses for “cre­ative dif­fer­ences”. She re­vealed on her In­sta­gram ac­count that she wasn’t told that her char­ac­ter’s sto­ry­line had “run its course” and she had ex­pected to be in sea­son 3. In­stead, her place is taken by new se­ries reg­u­lar Spe­cial Agent Tammy Gre­go­rio (Vanessa Fer­l­ito), who will be in­ves­ti­gat­ing the team after sea­son 2’s mole sto­ry­line.

ART IM­I­TATES LIFE

Episode 16 (16 Novem­ber) sees a softer side of Agent Pride when his “friend” Rita Dev­ereaux asks the team to find a miss­ing Naval lawyer who worked with clas­si­fied cases. Rita is played by Scott’s wife Chelsea Field (she had a one-episode role in fran­chise orig­i­nal se­ries NCIS, 2003- cur­rent). “It was fun,” says Scott. “After 16 years to­gether, I thought I’d show her where I work [Laughs].”

TEAM OF MANY TAL­ENTS

“It’s non-stop ac­tion. There is a new en­emy around ev­ery cor­ner” says Scott. And he isn’t jok­ing! The team deal with ev­ery­thing from CIA con­spir­a­cies (episode 5, 24 Au­gust) to a gang of hack­ers in episode 13 (26 Oc­to­ber). Plus, there is a twist in the sea­son fi­nale (episode 24, which should air in 2018) when the team – Christo­pher LaSalle, Sonja Percy and Gre­go­rio (Lu­cas Black, Shalita Grant and Vanessa Fer­l­ito) – ask the FBI to help catch Pride, who’s gone rogue.

The new-look New Or­leans team (from left): Spe­cial Agent Gre­go­rio and Agents LaSalle, Grant and Pride.

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