Ncis: Origins’ Mike Franks Actor Explains His Role In The Upcoming Spinoff


Ahead of NCIS: Origins’ release, Kyle Schmid teases what to expect from his role as young Mike Franks and how he fits into Leroy Jethro Gibbs’ start in the agency. Just two and a half months before NCIS debuts a brand-new show, excitement bubbles over Mark Harmon’s official return to the franchise, as he executive produces and provides the narration for NCIS: Origins. On the screen, the role of young Gibbs has been recast with Austin Stowell. Joining him in the show is Schmid, who takes over the role of Franks, first played by Muse Watson.
In a new interview with TV Insider, Schmid previews how he fits into NCIS: Origins and Gibbs’ early days at NCIS (then-called NIS). He touches on the mentor and mentee dynamic between him and Stowell’s character and hints that Franks is the reason why he stayed in the agency for that long. Schmid says:

He had been part of NCIS for a while. In 2001, when you meet him he is a little older, a little more jaded. He has seen a lot that I think he wished he could have had more control over. So, we’re seeing him at a point in his life where he has paved his own way and earned the respect of the agency. Now he has the opportunity to build a team that he sees as being some of the most promising agents in NCIS. We get to meet those people and see those people grow. He is still at a point where he gets to mentor Gibbs. I think we’ll get to see why Gibbs was who the world fell in love with in the original NCIS and how he came to be that way. And Mike Franks is a big part of that.

Gibbs & Franks’ Relationship Will Define The Success Of NCIS: Origins

Watson And Harmon’s Friendship Endured Well Into The Events Of The Flagship Series


NCIS: Origins will kick off in the early ’90s and run throughout the decade, and likely well into Gibbs becoming a part of the Major Case Response Team (MCRT). Despite eventually spearheading the flagship series, it was clear during the handful of scenes between Watson and Harmon as older versions of their respective characters that Gibbs continued to look up to Franks. However, with a less formal hierarchy, they became good friends. Even after Franks finally died, he kept on appearing to Gibbs as a vision, helping him navigate difficult points in his professional and personal life.

Franks was one of the very small circle of friends that he fully trusted with his life, and NCIS: Origins needs to show why.

Considering the pair’s strong bond, it’s on NCIS: Origins to establish that relationship. Watson and Harmon had incredible chemistry in NCIS, and it will, understandably, be compared to Schmid and Stowell’s in the prequel. Without that, it would be difficult to sell the whole show because a big part of it hinges on that relationship. As exciting as seeing young Gibbs operate is, he is always best when he is surrounded by a solid ensemble. Franks was one of the very small circle of friends that he fully trusted with his life, and NCIS: Origins needs to show why.

It’s currently uncertain if Harmon will appear on-screen as Gibbs in NCIS: Origins, but it would be great to kick off the prequel with one of his imagined conversations with Watson’s Franks. That could then lead to a series of flashbacks where they are much younger. This would also be a great way to bring back Watson to the NCIS franchise after being one of its most prominent recurring guest stars.