What We Know
For such a gregarious and friendly kind of guy, Deeks surprisingly has very few friends. Currently his world revolves around his wife and best friend, Kensi, and his teammates at NCIS, but there was a time when Deeks had a very special relationship with a young man he grew up with on the streets of Los Angeles. In Season 2 episode “Plan B,” written by Dave Kalstein and Joseph C. Wilson, Ray Martindale was introduced as Deeks’ childhood best friend and current snitch and informant.
Fans were intrigued by the complicated relationship they witnessed on screen. We found out it was Ray who gave Deeks his first gun that was used on his father when Deeks decided at one point that enough was enough. Deeks also lived with Ray and his ex-wife on and off during his LAPD undercover days as Max Gentry. Only Ray knew Deeks’ true identity and helped him to collar criminal baddies by informing on these street acquaintances. In “Plan B,” it was Deeks’ turn to stand by his best friend as Ray testifies in a federal arms-trading prosecution. Deeks and the NCIS team helps him go underground in order to evade retribution from the very gangs he gave up to the police. But things go wrong when Ray goes rogue. Deeks dons his Max Gentry undercover cape again to find out what happened to Ray. The team eventually discovers that Ray is protecting a pregnant girlfriend and begs his best friend to allow her to go into hiding with him. After running a scam on the arms cartel, the team is able to secretively whisk Ray and Jenna away and into a federal witness protection program and into obscurity.
What We Don’t Know
It’s been more than nine years, and there has been no mention of Ray or Jenna despite Ray teasing Deeks about his relationship with “Wikipedia Kensi” and begging to know what happens with the ‘thing’ he has between him and Kensi. Deeks of course insists ‘there is no thing’ but after a decade-long courtship and a wedding you might think Deeks has a lot of news to pass along to his old friend by now. So where is Ray and what has he been up to? Has he been in touch with Deeks?
Why It’s Important
It would have been unconscionable for Deeks and Kensi to invite Ray and Jenna to the wedding and expose them to any current dangers that may still exist. But Deeks had a very special relationship with this man who was like a brother to him. It would be nice to know that somehow he kept in touch with his friend and was able to tell him the good news regarding his wedding to Kensi. Ray promised Deeks he would go straight and live the good life for his family but was he was able to fulfill that promise? If not, the result could make for an angsty episode that forces Deeks to examine his own past and how differently his life might have turned out. If Ray has been safe this whole time, his experience as a father would no doubt provide a great opportunity for Deeks to explore his own desire to have children, and maybe to lessen some of the self-doubt he has about becoming a father.
We would like to know not only if Ray and his family are safe but maybe as a result more about Deeks’ early life growing up with Ray. What was it like living on the streets and how did Ray help Deeks after he shot his dad? Did they continue to remain close? Ray might be the perfect vehicle through which we could learn all sorts of things about Deeks’ past, including what happened after he shot his father, why he decided to become an attorney, and maybe even why he changed course and joined LAPD.
If you could sit down with Ray what questions would you ask him regarding Deeks? Leave your comments below.