- Ducky Mallard
Dr. Donald "Ducky" Mallard, M.D., M.E. is a fictional Chief
Medical Examinerin the "NCIS" television seriesby CBS Television, portrayed by David McCallum. Ducky is a ScottishFact|date=September 2008 chief medical examiner, albeit with an English accent, who assists the team and has an eccentric habit of talking to the dead bodies upon which he performs autopsies.
The fact that a
mallardis a type of duck most likely explains Ducky's nickname; the word 'Ducky', is also a term of endearment . Secondly, his first name is Donald which alludes to Donald Duck.
He was educated at Eton [ Season 1 Episode 16 "Bête Noire"] and graduated from Edinburgh Medical School [ Season 1 Episode 23 "Reveille"] Fact|date=September 2008 — he played
cricketat both institutions. [Played cricket at school from 2nd form to Upper 6th. Season 1 Episode 7 "Sub Rosa"] Fact|date=September 2008
He won "
The Scotsman" newspaper Chess championship at age 16Fact|date=September 2008
Dr. Mallard worked for the
British Policeand many others before NCISFact|date=September 2008. He has many long and complicated stories about his long working experience and besides talking to dead bodies, his other idiosyncrasy is his tendency to ramble on about what he calls his "salad days" to anyone within earshot; in a Season One episode it is revealedFact|date=September 2008 that one of his assistants (Gerald) has taken to wearing earplugs or MP3 player earphones when working with Mallard.
Mallard lives with his 96-year-old mother, who suffers from
dementia.Fact|date=September 2008 As a baby, she left him on a ferry from the Orkneys to John O.Groats and was halfway to Thurso before she noticed.Fact|date=September 2008 He never married and has no children; his only recorded date within seasons one and two ended with his date's arrest for manslaughter.Fact|date=September 2008
Mallard is very particular about
crime scenes; he once pushed a French police officeroff a cliff for disturbing a body before he could attend to it. Fortunately, the cliff wasn't too steep and the lake 60 ft below broke the officer's fall. [Season 1 Episode 3 "Seadog"]
Mallard has a long unspoken history of friendship with Special Agent
Jethro GibbsSyn|date=September 2008, and has stitched Gibbs up after violent attacks from ex-wives. [Season 1 Episode 5 "The Curse". The attack happened 4 years prior.] He bonds well with the rest of the team, particularly forensics specialist Abby Sciuto.Fact|date=September 2008 He was assisted by Gerald who was later shot in the shoulder by Ari Haswarito demonstrate the lengths he would go to in the episode Bete Noire; he is now assisted by Jimmy Palmer.
Mallard drives a vintage Morgan
roadsterthat he restored himself.Fact|date=September 2008
Mallard's age is uncertain. In one Season Three episode he is shown wearing medals on his dinner jacket; however they all appear to be of
World War IIvintage.Fact|date=September 2008 But in Season Four episode Blowback when the key suspect in a black market operation is accidentally killed, he goes undercover after Director Shepard says "All we need is a 68 year old Englishman"Fact|date=September 2008 (to replace the Englishman who died and has thus endangered an undercover operation. Certainly, the ring tone of his mobile phone plays "Scotland the Brave".
Mallard has referred in several episodesFact|date=September 2008 during Season Four to his status as an Officer in the
British Armed Forces(possibly the Royal MarinesOr|date=September 2008 - in the episode "Twisted Sister" he refers to when he was in "the Regiment"; this is usually used when talking about one of the Special Air ServiceRegimentsFact|date=September 2008< , however Royal Marines are inelligble to serve in the SAS, serving in the Special Boat Serviceinstead).
In the fourth season it is revealedBy whom that he is taking a course in
forensic psychology(a Masters degreeaccording to DiNozzo) and graduates prior to the third episode of the season in which he is shown using his new knowledge to profile a missing woman. Gibbs' sudden resignation at the end of Season Three and subsequent reinstatement led to a marked cooling off of the friendship between the two menFact|date=September 2008, however they finally reconciled their differences in the episode Smoked in which it was revealed that he was upset due to Gibbs never telling him about his deceased first wife and daughter: he thought that such important information would be shared between friends. Gibbs indicates the depth of the friendship, breaking his own rule against apologising, and straightforwardly says "I'm sorry Ducky. I should have told you." His response is "And I should have told you something a long time ago...welcome back." They hug and Gibbs whispers, "Thanks."
Preparation for the Role
According to the behind-the-scenes feature on the 2006 DVD of "NCIS" season 1, McCallum became an expert in forensics to play the Dr "Ducky" Mallard character, including appearing at Medical Examiner conventions. Bellisario says on it that McCallum's knowledge became so vast that Bellisario (at the time of the interview) was considering making him a technical advisor on the show.
McCallum appeared at the 21st Annual James Earl Ash Lecture, held May 19 2007 at the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology, was an evening for honoring America's service members. His lecture, "Reel to Real Forensics," was with Cmdr. Craig T. Mallak, U.S. Armed Forces medical examiner, and featured a presentation comparing the real-life work of the Armed Forces Medical Examiner staff with that of the fictional naval investigators appearing on "NCIS." [ [http://www.davidmccallumfansonline.com/afip.htm David McCallum discusses medical examiner work] ]
References to "The Man from UNCLE"
David McCallum's earlier portrayal of the Russian agent
Illya Kuryakinin " The Man from U.N.C.L.E." was brought up in a Season Two episode between two of the other characters [Season 2 Episode 13 "The Meat Puzzle"] :
Kate: "Gibbs? What did Ducky look like when he was younger?"
Gibbs: "Illya Kuryakin."
Similarly, in a Season One episode "Marine Down", Abby is shown creating a computer-generated reconstruction of what Mallard might have looked like when he was younger; the image created was based upon a publicity photograph of McCallum from "Man from U.N.C.L.E."Fact|date=September 2008
References to real life
In the episode The Meat Puzzle a photograph of the actor and his real-life father, David McCallum, Sr. is seen in Ducky's family home.Fact|date=September 2008
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