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Ryan Whittaker

Ryan Whittaker is a character in Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within voiced by Ving Rhames. Second in command to Captain Gray Edwards, Master Sergeant Ryan Whittaker is the glue that holds the Deep Eyes squad together.



Ryan is a tall dark-skinned man with black hair. He has a large size and stature. He wears the professional Deep Eyes gear: full protective gear when outside a barrier city for a mission, and a blue shirt with the Deep Eyes logo otherwise.


Nothing if not loyal, Ryan Whittaker is Gray Edwards's personal friend, accessible, brave, and true. He is the soul and conscience of the Deep Eyes team. Ryan is selfless and courageous, always looking out for the well being of his fellow teammates.


Spoiler warning: Plot and/or ending details follow. (Skip section)

Ryan stands guard as Phantoms move in on the team

Born in New York City in 2035, Ryan was one of five children. After the death of his father in the Phantom Cleansing mission, Ryan enrolled in the Houston Military Academy becoming an expert in combat and infantry. His selflessness and courage became an example for fellow officers and he was highly regarded within the academy. After several successful wasteland reconnaissance and heroic efforts during the failure of the San Francisco barrier, he was appointed to the highly regarded Deep Eyes squadron led by Captain Gray Edwards and became the squad's second-in-charge, often finding himself quelling the bickering between Jane Proudfoot and Neil Fleming, allowing Gray to focus on the mission.

While retrieving a plant in the New York wasteland, Aki Ross was found and assisted by the Deep Eye squad consisting of Gray, Ryan, Jane, and Neil before being brought to the New York Barrier City. Following Aki's testimony to the city's council, Ryan and Neil "helped" her and Gray's relationship out by trapping them in a scanning tower. The couple's time together was inadvertently helped furthermore by a suspicious Douglas Hein, who temporarily assigns Gray's Deep Eye squad to accompany Aki on her remaining voyages, with Major Elliot inserting some of his own men into the squad to ensure compliance.

Ryan "assists" in Gray and Aki's relationship

Aki's search for the seventh wave-form led her to the Tucson wasteland and the remnants of the Phantom Cleansing Mission. As ordered the Deep Eye squad accompanied her through the wasteland, deducing that the spirit was the living energy inside the Ovo-pack of a dead soldier. However, almost immediately after the spirit's retrieval, Aki is overcome by the infection within her, the presence of which began drawing other Phantoms towards the party, and falls into a dream-filled coma. She awakens momentarily during the hectic escape only to be shot accidentally by one of Hein's men and falls back into the coma.

Returning to the New York Barrier city, Dr. Sid manages to reinforce the infection's containment by introducing the waves from all the currently collected spirits. During this process Gray had to act as her spiritual support, entering into her dreams to make sure she would not be overtaken by the Phantoms before the containment was complete. The containment a success and her chest plate repaired Aki awoke from her coma only to be thrown into a detention cell along with Dr. Sid and the rest of the squad after General Hein found cause to suspect that she was being controlled by the Phantoms.

Ryan, though mortally wounded, destracts a Phantom long enough for the Black Boa to escape

This incarceration, however, was short-lived, as soon after, due to General Hein's attempts to stage a Phantom invasion, the Barrier City's power grid went off-line. Released the group escaped from the prison ward to discover the Barrier City being overridden by Phantoms. Eventually acquiring transport they made their way to the hangars where the Black Boa was being detained, however, while helping Aki and Gray escape the New York Barrier City, Ryan's leg is broken, causing him to be left on the assault car while the team tries to get the ship prepared to leave. During this time, Ryan notices a large Phantom heading towards Aki and Gray and begins firing the assault car's turret to deter it. Ryan is then subsequently killed by an additional Phantom.

Spoilers end here.

Other appearances[]

Thriller Easter Egg[]

Ryan confronts Hein in a "Thriller" parody

Ryan makes an appearance (along with the rest of the film's virtual cast) in a hidden Easter egg parody of Michael Jackson's "Thriller" music video created for the DVD release of the film.

The parody is set shortly after Douglas Hein inadvertantly causes the destruction of the New York Barrier City's barrier control room. As he runs away he runs into Aki, Gray, Ryan, Jane, Neil, Dr. Sid, Major Elliot and three alive Phantoms who proceed to, as a group, perform the dance number to "Thriller" with Aki as the lead.

Behind the scenes[]

In early storyboards, Ryan Whitaker was equipped with a cybernetic right arm, similar to Barret Wallace in Final Fantasy VII.

The Pepsi can in Ryan's hand during the Gondola scene was originally supposed to be a Japanese beer, which explains why the can is so big.

Ryan's voice actor, Ving Rhames, also played Marsellus Wallace from the movie "Pulp Fiction"- an interesting choice, taking into consideration the fact that the character upon whom Whittaker is based shares the surname.