Is Hetty Leaving 'NCIS: Los Angeles'? Why Fans Are Worried About Linda Hunt's Future

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Photo credit: Bill Inoshita
Photo credit: Bill Inoshita

From The Pioneer Woman

NCIS: Los Angeles fans come week after week for the drama, but they stay for the cast. Eric Christian Olsen and Daniela Ruah are the best fictional couple (and real-life in-laws). Chris O’Donnell and LL Cool J are the best leaders. Renée Felice Smith is the best...everything. And then there’s Linda Hunt.

Linda plays Hetty, the wise matriarch of the NCIS: LA family. She’s who everyone looks up to and respects. Heck, she even married Deeks and Kensi! But the beloved character has been absent for most of season 12, so people are naturally wondering: Is Hetty leaving NCIS: LA?

A recent episode is starting to make us think she might be. In fact, Kilbride (Gerald McRaney) actually said the words, “Hetty’s not coming back” which doesn’t sound promising. But let’s back up a bit.

Photo credit: Bill Inoshita
Photo credit: Bill Inoshita

All season long, Hetty has been phoning it in from an undisclosed location, according to TVInsider. There’s no info one what she’s up to, so her overall safety is a little unclear. Still, there wasn’t initially a huge cause for concern because even though she hasn’t been in person with everyone, she’s still assigning cases and even saved Deeks’s job earlier in the year.

But when Kilbride dropped that info, it made everyone second-guess if this is a plotline or an exit strategy for Linda. After all, the show has been pulling back on her for a bit now, and it makes sense that she might be on her way out. But after Palmer’s wife’s death on NCIS, Maria Bello’s goodbye, and the NCIS: NOLA finale on the horizon, Hetty leaving would be too much to handle.

Photo credit: Screen Grab
Photo credit: Screen Grab

Alas, Kilbride said, “I think it’s time we accept this mission she’s on may very well be her last,” which feels a little ominous. Fingers-crossed he’s wrong! They’ve toyed with us before, so here’s hoping this is part of a bigger mystery and not something that’ll lead to her leaving. Or worse.

What do you think: Is NCIS: LA playing with our emotions, or is Hetty leaving this season? Share your predictions in the comments!