Part of the ‘NCIS’ franchise, ‘NCIS: Los Angeles’ is the spin-off of the original series. The show follows the adventures of the operatives that are part of the specialized arm of Naval Criminal Investigative Service, called the Office of Special Projects. The team is led by the highly accomplished veteran undercover operative, Henrietta Lange AKA Hetty, who is a Supervisory Special Agent and the team’s Operational Manager.
The Academy Award-winning actress Linda Hunt has been portraying the character since the police-procedural drama first premiered in 2009. However, in the last few seasons, fans have been seeing less and less of her, and they are curious to know why that is. Let’s find out!
What Happened to Hetty on NCIS: Los Angeles?
Over the years, Hetty has gone on several secret missions, so it is not unusual for her to disappear from her LA base. We also know that her team has been preparing for her eventual retirement. There have been discussions about who would step into Hetty’s shoes, with Callen and Nell being two of the most prominent choices. However, episode 14 of season 12 drops a bomb when Retired Navy Admiral Hollace Kilbride tells Nell that Hetty is not coming back.
However, this is only a speculation by Killbride since Hetty has not spoken to him. He believes that the veteran undercover operative has been in the profession for a long time and is well aware of the risks. So, it is time for the team to accept that her current mission might just be her last. Throughout the season, Hetty has only been seen interacting through video calls from an undisclosed location that looks like a war zone.
For now, Hetty has been working remotely with Nell and the rest of the team members. Although it may be difficult to track her down, it is possible that the team may have to come to her aid should things start going downhill. You may remember that in season 9, her team flew to Vietnam to help her. After all, Hetty is an integral part of the Office of the Special Projects; therefore, it is unlikely that her character will be written off without a proper farewell, if at all.
Where Is Linda Hunt Now?
Linda Hunt plays the mysterious Hetty, whose sudden disappearances are not as shocking to her team as one would think. Fans have been seeing less of the actress on the show since season 10 because she was recovering from injuries incurred from a multicar accident in 2018. In her statement, Hunt said that she hoped to return earlier in the season but required more time to recover, which is why she features only in the latter portions of the tenth installment.
After the COVID-19 pandemic swept across the world, all industries have had to make changes to their mode of working. The global health crisis explains Linda Hunt’s prolonged physical absence from the set, given that the 76-year-old actress falls under the bracket of people who are at a higher risk of getting infected. For seasons 11 and 12, the creators of the series have had to take extra precautions for Hunt’s health and safety amid the ongoing pandemic. Therefore, scenes involving the actress have been filmed in the driveway of her home.
Showrunner R. Scott Gemmill confirmed the news, saying that while they are doing everything to keep the cast and crew members safe, Linda Hunt would have to be given more attention in terms of safety. Since the producers are going out of their way to include the prestigious talent in the show, there seems to be no reason to believe that Hunt will not be a part of ‘NCIS: Los Angeles.’ Although it has not been confirmed as to when she will return full-time, Linda Hunt continues to feature in the series.
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