‘NCIS’ Season 20: Showrunner Teases Alden Parker’s Return Despite Trouble With Vivian

CBS fans who watched the cliffhanger at the end of NCIS Season 19 can’t wait to see what NCIS Season 20 has in store, especially with Alden Parker. The end of season 19 showed Special Agent Alden Parker leaving with ex-wife Vivian Kolchak after her kidnapping and his framing for a murder. Is Parker doomed? Here’s what the showrunner teased.

Is Alden Parker coming back on ‘NCIS’? He ran away with ex-wife Vivian Kolchak

Diona Reasonover, Gary Cole, and Wilmer Valderrama in 'NCIS.' Gary Cole returns as Alden Parker in 'NCIS' Season 20
Diona Reasonover, Gary Cole, and Wilmer Valderrama | CBS

Special Agent Alden Parker took on a serious leadership role after Leroy Jethro Gibbs left. But given what occurred during the season 19 finale, his fate in NCIS Season 20 remains uncertain. Parker reunited with his ex-wife, Vivian Kolchak, after she was kidnapped. Unfortunately, it looks like Vivian might be playing games with her ex. While they’re starting the new season off on the lam together, she sent a mysterious and nefarious text. “It’s done. I have him,” she wrote. With that said, fans will certainly see Parker in season 20.

Fans aren’t exactly certain what the text means just yet, but many viewers suspect she’s working with “The Raven,” which could potentially harm Parker. “That’s the big mystery, right?” showrunner Steven D. Binder shared with TV Insider regarding Vivian’s true intentions. “I don’t know that there’s much I can say about it, except that we want to traverse some new territory with Parker having an ex-wife.” 

Fans will see Alden Parker take on more of a commanding role in ‘NCIS’ Season 20

Gary Cole in 'NCIS' Season 20
Gary Cole in ‘NCIS’ Season 20 | Robert Voets/CBS

Vivian Kolchak’s text at the end of season 19 likely means serious trouble for Alden Parker in NCIS Season 20. But it seems nothing too serious happens to Parker, as showrunner Steven D. Binder alluded fans will see Parker take on a commanding role in the new season.

“He’s not just a boss, he’s their boss,” Binder told TV Insider. “I think next season, we want to see Parker step into more of a leadership, patriarchal role that one might expect in a show like this. This first season was really ‘getting to know you,’ them getting to know him and Parker getting to know the team. Now, he’s going to feel more comfortable being in charge and we’re going to see him wield that power a little more forcefully.”

Binder added that fans will see Parker step into his power. “Parker’s not the guy directly ordering people around and taking the horse by the reins,” he wrote. “We’re going to give him the reins a little more.”

Is Gibbs ever returning to ‘NCIS’?

With Alden Parker taking on a commanding role in NCIS Season 20, what does that mean for Gibbs? Is he ever returning to the show?

It appears there are no current plans for Mark Harmon to return, but the door remains open. “As an executive producer and dear friend, Mark continues to be an integral part of the fabric of the show,” Binder said, according to Entertainment Tonight. “Our north star has always been staying true to our characters, and that truth has always guided the stories we tell and where those characters go. So, regarding the future of Gibbs, as longtime fans of the show may have noticed over the years, never count Leroy Jethro Gibbs out.”

NCIS Season 20 airs Mondays at 9 p.m. ET on CBS.

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