Move Over, Wonder Woman

María José de Pablo Fernández a/k/a Coté de Pablo

Coté de Pablo is a Chilean actress, songwriter, vocalist, and recording artist, best known for her role as Special Agent Ziva David in the hit television series NCIS.

In years past, Linda Carter was a television icon, spinning into her Wonder Woman garb to the delight of millions (mostly male). One expected the super feats and exploits of Batman, Superman, Captain America, and others, but Wonder Woman added a new dimension to the era in the form of a female super hero. It was a novelty at the time. Ziva David is different. She is real.

De Pablo plays a former Israeli Mossad Liaison Officer, now a Special Agent for the Naval Criminal Investigative Service. Ziva has it all. She is blessed with the beauty Hollywood seems to require, but projects herself as a serious, intelligent, formidable protector of innocent folks everywhere. From day one of her appearance on the show, there was never a doubt as to whether she would make it in a world of men or be able to perform her duties as well as her male counterparts. She is better than everyone. Ziva gets the job done because she is the best, not the best woman.

I find her to be a role model for young women everywhere. I don’t believe I have ever seen a TV show or movie production dealing with terrorism, violence, spies, and criminal activity, or anything else for that matter, where the gender of the heroine was not constantly glaring at spectators, often creating a feeling of make believe.

Arnold and Sly were stronger than everyone else. James Bond was smarter. Chuck Norris had special skills. Most Hollywood female cops and CIA agents have been equipped with other qualities. They could seduce. They were masters of disguise. They were sharp shooters. They even had boyfriends or husbands to help them out of jams. Not Ziva. She has it all. It is impossible to follow NCIS without recognizing the true qualities she possesses. She is not the model woman. She is the model person.

In a recent episode, Ziva unsuspectingly found herself amid four of the worst foes on the planet. Besides being murderers, the men looked more like gorillas than humans. When the NCIS team discovered her plight, knowing they could never arrive in time to assist her, an FBI agent asked team-leader Gibbs if agent David carried a weapon. His response was appropriate: “She is a weapon.” When the team finally arrived, the four predators lay sprawled out on the ground, hogtied. The viewing audience never once thought it was quite a feat for a woman.

Ziva David has leveled the playing field ‘70s feminists never quite discovered. There is nothing forced with this lady. She is simply the best.


  1. Thanks for your comment in our blog. I am always aware of your blog because I learn a lot from it. Thanks a lot and keep on.

  2. JJ, she is one kick-azz woman... I've watched NCIS for a couple of years now... She gets better and better.. More women should have her smarts and chutzpah.

  3. Hahaha! I LOVED that line when I heard it!

  4. Wonder Woman who?! She's so yesterday's news! I loved that line too, and quite a weapon at that! I agree with every word you so eloquently said! I am very happy they didn't have her say yes to marriage in a recent episode!

  5. I don't have TV right now but will get cable very soon. I'll be sure to watch NCIS. What a cool character, a good role model for everyone. What a well written post, JJ.
    I hope you're enjoying St. Augustine. I bet it's beautiful there. Take care!

  6. I LOVE Ziva! Here is a link to my favorite Ziva scene ever. Just in case the link doesn't work, Google "Ziva Dead Reckoning" and look for the video where she shoots two guys coming in two different doors while Gibbs waits on the phone.

    I'm not sure I know the scene you described. Will you send me a link to it please?

    Thanks for highlighting one of the best characters ever on TV.

  7. Hi JJ, thanks for stopping by today. Glad to hear all is well. take care, dee ;-)

  8. Fanatico Um: Thank you! I learn more from you.

    KBF: She's my favorite of all time.

    Judie: She is a weapon - even as an actress.

    Karen: That's the first thing my wife said. I don't think the ladies liked that guy.

    Galen: Under control! I love her. I'll try to find that other link.

    KB: There is just no one that cool on TV or in the movies. She has now replaced all my Western heroes. It would not have taken her two hours to rid the world of Goldfinger or Dr. No.

  9. LynNerdKelley: You bet she is cool. Yes, St. Augustine is beautiful. We have been happy here for ten years.

  10. Hi JJ .. I don't know her - but I enjoy good series without too much blood and gore or serious nasties .. ie a little relief suits me!

    She sounds slightly superhuman .. oh well .. glad you enjoy her and watching this series ..

    Cheers Hilary

  11. Hilary: Maybe not superhuman, but highly trained. It is fun.

  12. Ziva is pretty awesome, JJ. I'd like to borrow some of her skills while wrangling the teenagers, and channel my inner-Ziva.

  13. Roxy: It takes more than Ziva to wrangle with today's teenagers. Ziva would conclude that you are awesome.

  14. Well that explains a few things for me. Once I thought she was a traitor. She must have been undercover. As you can tell I don't get to watch a lot of network TV shows. With this HD TV package my husband just had to have, I am lucky to find the news. ~Ames

  15. Ames: Not at all. That was simply for drama. She is the quintessential hero.

  16. Wonderful! Sounds like something I wouls really like. :), Miriam@Meatless Meals For Meat Eaters

  17. Miriam: Ziva is quite a lady, indeed.

  18. YAY! As an actress, I'm constantly looking in tv shows and movies for roles that have been created for strong women. I'm so glad to hear Cote de Pablo is kicking some ass in this role - I'll definitely check her out on NCIS because of your recommendation :)

    Hope you've been well!

  19. Phoenix: The lady is a 21st century superhero without a cape!

  20. OMGosh, NCIS is one of my FAVORITE TV shows! So much, I buy the season and enjoy at home!

    Cote de Pablo is wonderful as an actress, but the show writes have lots to do with her character Ziva.

    Kudos to Cote for the role of Wonder Woman!!!!!!

  21. A-M: I agree! What a role model.


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