NCIS plot hole: Fans spot major error in Abby Sciuto’s profession – did you spot it?
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The popular long-running crime series has kept plenty of fans entertained during the coronavirus pandemic. Pauley Perrette’s Abby Sciuto formed part of NCIS’ main cast from the first to 15th seasons on CBS, but there could be a massive problem with her role as the team’s only forensic scientist.
Abby Sciuto (played by Pauley Perrette) has appeared alongside Leroy Gibbs (Mark Harmon) and Anthony DiNozzo (Michael Weatherly) since the very first season of NCIS in 2003.
Known for her sunny personality and gothic fashion sense, she became one of the series’ most iconic characters until Perrette’s departure in 2018.
Fans were sad to see her leave at the end of season 15, but Kasie Hines (Diona Reasonover) has been a well-received replacement for the last two instalments.
The paradoxically quirky analyst was considered one of the most indispensable members of the team thanks to her ability to head up the NCIS’ forensic science division all by herself.
Although she briefly hired an assistant, Chip Sterling (Michael Bellisario), Abby usually prefers to take on Gibbs’ cases alone.
However, fans have often pointed out this isn’t at all how a forensic laboratory would operate in the real world.
Some viewers have taken to Reddit to point out some glaring inaccuracies with Abby’s profession throughout the series.
Redditor tabbat0221 posted: “Has anyone ever wondered why NCIS apparently ever only had one forensic scientist to deal with all of the evidence brought to the lab?”
“I know at one point Abby was able to hire a lab assistant and after Chip was arrested, she insisted on working alone after that, but why was a full forensic team never built?”
In similar serialised television shows, and during real life cases, forensic analysis is usually handled by a larger team of experts.
Although Abby was well-known as a scientific prodigy, some viewers still found it strange that she almost never enlists the help of assistants or other experts in the lab.
Moreover, the forensic analyst’s reputation as a scientific marvel is somewhat thrown out the window when Kasie is revealed to be just as capable.
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As another fan explained: “Abby was always portrayed as being some kind of ‘superwoman’ for being able to handle all of it by herself.
“Yet, since Kasie has come on, she has also handled it all by herself. Thus, one has to wonder about Abby’s ‘superness’ after all.”
Of course, the behind-the-scenes reshuffles explain why Pauley Perrette was only replaced with one new cast member, as it would have been jarring to replace her role with two or more members of the cast.
Unfortunately, oversights like this can often break immersion in the world of NCIS as fans are forced to suspend their disbelief.
Thankfully, most viewers are aware the show is entirely fictional and often has to stretch the truth to make for entertaining television.
One more commenter reminded fans: “Because it’s a TV show and they didn’t want to cast an entire team. Abby’s role is entirely fictional.
“The real NCIS doesn’t have its own crime labs, we use the US Army Criminal Investigation Laboratory (USACIL), as well as various state and local laboratories to support our forensic efforts.”
NCIS season 17 is available to stream on CBS All Access.
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