The fun NCIS game for the summer is all about The Raven. You must guess the identity and for extra points, figure out why said terrorist hates Alden Parker.
There are two obvious names — new character Vivian Kolchak or FBI deputy director Wayne Sweeney. Or there’s a third choice — none of the above. In other words, NCIS writers are giving us all a big head fake before the season 20 premiere, Sept. 19.
But Sweeney has surpassed Viv as the top name on the theory list. First, let’s do the Raven set up. In “Birds of a Feather,” the season 19 finale, someone kidnapped Viv (Teri Polo) while she was out jogging. Then Parker’s former partner with the FBI turned up dead. Viv, who also is a former FBI agent, got away from the kidnappers. But the kidnapper spray painted “Never More” on the wall where he kept Viv. And if you watched “The Helpers,” an episode in February, you know that’s the Raven’s favorite phrase when he leaves messages for Parker (Gary Cole).
The FBI suspects Parker in the murder, especially after agents dug up off-shore financial records. Sweeney wants Parker. He already was irritated with him for not arresting Gibbs (Mark Harmon) early in season 19. It all gets complicated. But to refresh your memory, check out the Outsider recap.
And if you’re in the Viv camp, here’s why you think Parker’s ex wife is the Raven. Parker and Viv drove off together to try and figure out who is setting him up. It was Viv’s vintage Mercedes, but Parker is driving. She reaches for a bag in the backseat and pulls out a mix tape Parker made her when the two eloped. As Bon Jovi’s “She’s a Little Runaway” blasts away, Viv secretly sends a text message. “It’s done. I have him,” she typed. But we have no idea who was on the receiving end. The message was exactly like the text a stranger sent to start the episode once Viv had been grabbed off the jogging trail.
A very observant NCIS fan pointed out on Reddit that two motorcycles pulled out behind the Mercedes. Here’s the latest fan theory. Sweeney gave himself away during a conversation he had with Vance (Rocky Carroll).
A super fan on the NCIS SubReddit wrote: “yet another theory. S19 finale, FBI director Sweeney says something weird when he speaks to Vance and Parker in that video call. Sweeney says “pass along my SYMPATHY to Agent Parker, I know he and Vivian WERE close.” As we all know, Viv escaped her kidnapper. This fan thinks Sweeney knew she was supposed to be killed because he was connected to the kidnapping. Maybe the kidnappers let Viv go so she could bring Parker back to them. Perhaps Viv wants Parker’s help in busting the Raven. (Or possibly none of this makes sense.)
The fan poses another possibility: “Theory 98: maybe Vivian really is a baddie (right hand man to the Raven), simply because the Vivian actress Teri Polo is the big name guest star. The FBI Sweeney is convincing, but he isn’t a big name actor (Erik Passoja)? He’s in HBO’s Flight Attendant show if anyone watches that.”
CBS did announce that Polo will be a recurring character in season 20. We don’t know whether Passoja continues onward with NCIS.
So remember, the season 20 premiere is Sept. 19. Trust us, there will be more theories. It’s the cool thing to do in the summer.