Characters: NCIS: Los Angeles
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"Is this an interrogation or a date?"
G. Callen (Chris O'Donnell)
- Action Genre Hero Guy
- Broken Pedestal: Is a bit upset with Hetty when he finds out he's just one of many agents she's recruited and trained from broken homes. He seems to forgive her though.
- But Not Too Foreign: Son of a ex-Russian Army officer imprisoned in a gulag camp in Siberia and a Romanian mother.
- Combat Pragmatist: As a contrast to his partner's more typical fighting style.
- Deadpan Snarker: To give just one example, Callen and Hetty are in a graveyard remembering the dead. Hetty remarks she wants to just be gone: no flowers on the grave, etc. Callen says it won't happen, because he hears Granger's going to have her stuffed.
- Feuding Families: The almost 70 year old feud between Callen's family and the Comescu family is the reason why he is an orphan.
- Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Sam.
- Last Name Basis: At one point, Callen asks Hetty why she never calls him by his first name (though she usually calls most of the other agents by their last names, too). She responds, "It's not a name. It's a letter."
- Last of His Kind: Callen is apparently the only living member of his family, which a certain Eastern European crime family has been hellbent on wiping out.
- Married to the Job
- Mysterious Past: Hell, he doesn't even know his own first name.
- No Name Given
- Omniglot: G can speak English, Arabic, French, German (Which some people says has an Austrian accent), Italian (With a Northern accent), Polish, Russian and Spanish. He says that he can speak Czech and Romanian. In "Allegiance", he can speak Turkish. But Sam chews him out for not speaking the right words.
- One-Letter Name: Due to the paperwork with his full name on it getting lost by the foster system.
- Orphan's Ordeal: His time in foster care was rather rough.
- Parental Abandonment: His father is a question mark, and his mother was killed by the Comescus.
- Trauma-Induced Amnesia: Callen witnessed his mother's murder but suppressed the memory most of his life.
"Yeah, I see where you're going with this. Popeye ate spinach, Popeye was a sailor, so... we're looking for a crew member with giant forearms, smoking a pipe."
Sam Hanna (LL Cool J)
- Bald of Awesome
- Big Brother Instinct: According to Nate, it's his biggest weakness: trying to protect everyone.
- Cultured Badass: Among other things, he's a trained sommelier.
- Cunning Linguist: If there's a foreign language the team needs, Sam probably has it.
- Genius Bruiser: A former Navy SEAL and all around Scary Black Man. As previously mentioned he speaks three additional languages fluently and can handle himself in Farsi, and he has extensively studied sharia law and the Qur'an. Justified: They don't let Dumb Muscle into the SEALs.
- Happily Married: Although it isn't brought up much, to the point where Kensi and Deeks were very surprised when he offhandedly brought it up while interrogating a suspect. Callen knew about them, though.
- Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Callen.
- Limited Wardrobe: His outfit of choice◊ seems to be long-sleeved, four-button Henley shirts in assorted solid colors.
- Living Emotional Crutch: For Callen. It's said that "his partnership is the only stable thing in his partner's life."
- The Lancer
- Omniglot: Sam speaks native English with Arabic, Japanese and Spanish. He's familiar with Farsi, but he didn't speak the language for a long time. In "Allegiance", he can speak Korean. But G chews him out for not speaking the right words.
- Parental Abandonment: At least to his kids. The only thing Sam doesn't like is that extended hours makes him miss out on his kids' lives like school graduation.
- Scary Black Man: He uses his height and musculature to intimidate when he's working or using an alias, and even with his coworkers, he carries a strong aura of "Do NOT mess with me."
"Anybody want to put a leash on him before we go another round right here?"
Kensi Blye (Daniela Ruah)
- Action Girl
- The Big Guy
- Clear My Name
- Disappeared Dad: He died.
- Eye Scream: To a degree. Kensi - and, of course, the actress - has an unusual birthmark on the white of one of her eyes which gives her a distinctive look. Viewers who might not be aware of this unusual trait might think that Kensi, or the actress, has some sort of eye injury or a completely dark eyeball depending on the lighting and camera angle. In reality, of course, neither is the case.
- Friendly Sniper: She enjoys the usual camaraderie with her colleagues, has an "are they or aren't they" relationship with another agent, and often takes part in the show's humor. And the in the next scene she is cold-bloodedly sniping bad guys to death. She doesn't fit the "loner" aspect of the trope, but otherwise ... shudder.
- Lad-ette: Views of her home are basically that of a bachelor pad.
- Ms. Fanservice: Perhaps the inevitable result of being the only female regular under the age of 40 (until Nell came along, but Nell's not that sort of character), although she's fairly mild compared with some - but a lot stronger than Ziva David.
- Omniglot: She can speak English with Portuguese and Spanish. (In real life, Daniela can speak the last two languages fluently aside from English, which doubles as a The Cast Showoff). In "The Dragon and the Fairy", she displays her proficiency in French.
- Tomboy and Girly Girl: The Tomboy to Nell's Girly Girl.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: With Deeks
- Written-In Infirmity: Kensi is sent on a assignment to Afghanistan in Season 5 due to Daniela Ruah's pregnancy.
- Wrench Wench: She was an only child, so her father taught her everything he'd teach a son, including things like fixing a car and wiring a house.
- You Killed My Father
Nate "Doc" Getz (Peter Cambor)
"The million dollar question is do you know what you're doing?"
Dominic "Dom" Vail (Adam Jamal Craig)
"I was attacked by a hell hound."
Marty Deeks (Eric Christian Olsen)
- Abusive Parents: His dad tried to shoot him at least twice. Or maybe once. The show is a little unclear about it.
- Afraid of Needles: He faints when Hetty gives him a shot in 3x21
- All Take and No Give: Despite his Butt Monkey tendencies, he would probably be this wasn't it for casual hints from the team that they do care... which become increasingly less casual.
- Ascended Extra: Got promoted from recurring character to principal cast in season 2.
- Berserk Button: A dirty cop once mocked a woman Deeks had a relationship with; a fellow cop that the dirty one had framed for his activities after she'd been killed by a crimelord. Deeks pulled his gun on the man, and after surrendering it to Sam, proceeded to beat the hell out of him with his bare hands.
- Butt Monkey: As the newest on the team, G, Sam and his partner Kensi all tend to pick on him, though he tends to either shrug it off or play it up. In one or two tense episodes, it's implied he sets himself up for teasing to lighten the mood.
- The Chick: To an extent
- Chivalrous Pervert: For variable levels of chivalry and perversion.
- Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass
- Disappeared Dad
- Distressed Dude: After being shot twice, kidnapped, used as bait, beat up on numerous occasions, and being involved in more explosions than this troper can count - honestly, the only person who MIGHT rival him is Callen, and that's only because he's the last surviving member of a family that's been feuding with another for decades and everybody wants to kill him.
- Though he may count, at times, as a Badass in Distress since he does tend to get himself out of those messes.
- Considering he saved Kensi's life by shooting the baddie before he could kidnap her after racing down a couple flights of stairs to get to her when he worked it out in his head that he was the bait to lure her out of hiding. And that was after he'd been shot. Twice.
- Drama Queen: He is always freaking out in the worst times. Normally used for comical relief.
- Friend to All Children: Seems to have a knack for bringing kids out of their shells.
- Heroic BSOD: Seems to be falling into this after being brutally tortured during the season 4 finale.
- Hidden Depths: Grew up playing the violin, and seems to be able to sing as well. Also, was a public defender before he became a cop.
- Nice Guy: Every Christmas Eve, he volunteers at a soup kitchen.
- Overshadowed by Awesome: If this show had been about the L.A.P.D., Deeks would have been The Hero. Next to G, Sam, and Kensi, however, he's The Chick.
- Real-Life Relative: Olsen is the RL brother-in-law of Daniela Ruah; she's married to his brother (who is also the stunt double for Deeks!)
- Ship Tease: With Kensi.
- Sixth Ranger After Dom is killed
- Standard Cop Backstory : He shot his father when he was 11. The last time Deeks saw him, his father tried to shoot him with a shotgun on Thanksgiving.
- Unresolved Sexual Tension: With Kensi. Season 5 resolved it.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: With Kensi
- You Can Leave Your Hat On: Paid his way through law school and the Police Academy by stripping.
NCIS Support Personnel
"I broke the internet."
Eric Beale (Barrett Foa)
"Do they always expect miracles?"
Nell Jones (Renee Felice Smith)
- Badass in Distress: She's been taken hostage a few times. The first used her as a human shield so she unloaded his gun. The second manages to take her gun so she pulls a knife and stabs him repeatedly.
- Belligerent Sexual Tension: She and Eric lapse into this when she feels he doesn't give her enough attention, or when they become slightly competitive. It is mostly playful and benign.
- Beware the Nice Ones: Unlike Eric, she is field trained and carries a gun when in the field. She hasn't had to use it that often, but she has captured a few suspects and disarmed a trained opponent who had taken her hostage and was using her as a human shield.
- The Chick: Occasionally.
- Cry Cute: Well almost. In "Free Ride", she almost went to this since Nell wants to spend the holidays with her family. Due to the case, she can't leave until it's solved.
- Girly Bruiser: Once escaped from a gunman holding her hostage.
- Hollywood Hacking: Generally averted, occasionally played painfully straight.
- Exposition: What she's commonly used for.
- The Lad-ette: According to a profile created for her by her sister. Subverted when it turns out that, among other things, she doesn't know anything about football.
- Number Two: Hetty appears to be training her as a potential successor.
- The Smart Girl
- Sugar and Ice Personality: When forced to take Hetty's place, she reveals that she can become just as authoritative and efficient as her for routine work.
- Tomboy and Girly Girl: The Girly Girl to Kensi's Tomboy.
- Unresolved Sexual Tension: With Eric.
Henrietta "Hetty" Lange (Linda Hunt)
- And Starring: Hunt gets the 'With'.
- The Atoner: She has blamed herself for the deaths of several agents to a point that she has tried to resign. Three times. All she does is change the date on the letter.
- Badass Bureaucrat
- Badass in a Nice Suit: She prides herself on her haute couture. In one episode, where Abby Sciutto assists the team in taking down a serial killer, Hetty compliments Abby on her own unique sense of style.
- The Chessmaster
Callen: When are you gonna stop moving us around like chess pieces!?
Hetty: I don't move pieces, Mr. Callen. I move the board.
- Cool Old Lady
- Cut His Heart Out with a Spoon
- Expansion Pack Past: At times.
- Genre Savvy: Her team always approaches her desk one at a time unless called over. When Callen and Hanna walk up to her together:
Hetty: I sense impending mayhem. And perhaps an outrageous petty cash request.
- Guile Hero: She is once called The Duchess of Deception
- Hey, It's That Voice!: Since when did Gaia become the head of an NCIS branch?
- Mama Bear: Hetty does some long distance Mama Bearing when Sam and Callen are held hostage by militia— she uses her "political capital" with Sec Nav to send them backup in the form of fighter jets.
- The Mentor
- Miniature Senior Citizens
- My Greatest Failure: Failing to save Callen's mom. As well as the deaths of previous agents.
- Mysterious Past: She could tell you, but she'd probably have to kill you.
- Never Mess with Granny
- No Celebrities Were Harmed: Hetty, like a certain Edna Mode, is modeled after of costume designer Edith Head. In "Imposters" she mentions to have worked with Bette Davis on Death on the Nile, so Hetty might actually be Edith Head in the NCIS universe.
- Not So Above It All: At the end of the street racing episode, Hetty spots Eric's Segway in the empty office. The last few seconds of the episode is her riding it, whooping.
- Not So Stoic: Snaps at Callen when he challenges her on recruiting and losing so many vulnerable agents. See his Broken Pedestal moment, above.
- Noodle Incident: Has many, often from the Expansion Pack Past being a Mysterious Past.
- She once ruled Nicaragua for 72 hours. "Don't ask."
- "Hetty, plus tequila, plus mechanical bull, equals bar fight."
- Omniglot: English and German and in "Allegiance", Welsh.
- Parental Substitute: To Callen. She's always had a special connection to him given their shared history.
- Parental Abandonment: Her parents died shortly after being freed from a Nazi concentration camp and she was adopted.
- Shrouded in Myth
- Spot of Tea
- Team Mom
- Took a Level in Kindness : Though she proved kind and caring since the pilot, she reached new levels in season 2 and 3.
Owen Granger (Miguel Ferrer)
Mike Renko (Brian Avers)
Lara Macy (Louise Lombard)
Marcel Janvier (The Chameleon)
- Asshole Victim: Suffers various severe injuries throughout the show. No-one feels sorry for him.
- Ax-Crazy: Has absolutely no concern for other's life and is possibly the most psychotic villain in the show.
- Big Bad: Of the finale of Season 3 and the premier of Season 4
- Body Horror: First, he is shot in the face by Callen. Then has one of his hands cut off by Vaziri.
- The Chessmaster: Single-handedly manipulates NCIS multiple times into doing what he wants, including wiping out a family of arms dealers, manipulates Sam, Kensi and Deeks to almost getting blown up all to get his revenge and screw with Callen.
- Covert Pervert: Implied in his debut episode to have a liking to women with tattoos. Whether this is true or not is never confirmed.
- Faux Affably Evil: Will act incredibly polite towards you while describing how he will kill you.
- Hero Killer: Responsible for the deaths of both Lauren Hunter and Mike Renko
- Jerk Ass
- Roaring Rampageof Revenge: Literally his entire reason for living is to get revenge on Callen for shooting him in the face.
- Xanatos Speed Chess: In the Season 5 premier, during his escape from Callen, Marcel constantly updates his strategy to the point of cutting off parts of his own skin just to get rid of the tracking residue Callen placed on him.