- "I am going to release every secret that Roarke was so desperate to hide to a hundred major law firms and civil-rights organizations, including the ACLU. America deserves the truth and nothing less. Yes, this is highly classified and incriminating intelligence and yes, I have violated so many laws by leaking this to you, the people. But this country will not fix itself in the shadows anymore. The light is all we have, and the truth is all we can trust. So resist. Fight back. That's what I did and will always do for my country!"
- —Alex Parrish
Alex Parrish is the top recruit at Quantico and the top suspect in the bombing of Grand Central. Since the moment, she discovered her father had been an FBI agent, Alex dreamed of going to Quantico to discover the secrets he kept from her. What she never expected was that she would be so good at being an agent. She's not only found her calling, she's found true friends, and possibly romance. Alex can read people instantly which makes it hard for her to trust anyone - her relationships tend to be quick and dirty. That's what she thought when she met Ryan Booth on a plane but things are turning out a little differently than she expected. Fiercely competitive and naturally gifted, everything that she learned at Quantico is put to the test when she's accused of the biggest terror attack since 9/11. What she experiences on the run transforms her from the FBI's top recruit to the best-trained agent imaginable...if only she could clear her name.
Alex was born on July 18, 1982. She grew up in Oakland, California, with her parents Michael and Sita. Her father was an alcoholic and physically abusive towards his wife. When Alex was in her pre-teenage years, Michael was killed during a violent episode against Sita. The police declined to press charges, unaware that Alex was responsible for Michael's death. Alex was then sent to live with Sita's family in Mumbai, India. Years later, Alex returned to the United States, where she commenced her studies and later graduated from the University of California, Berkeley. Sometime after her graduation, she enrolled at the FBI Academy in 2015. Unknown to the Bureau, Alex had discovered that her father was a former FBI agent and had applied to learn more about his past. Alex kept her activities a secret from Sita, telling her mother that she was starting graduate school.
On her way to Quantico, Alex had sexual relations with a stranger, Ryan Booth, only to discover that he, too, is a new trainee. At the Academy, Alex befriends her fellow New Agent Trainees (NATs), including Shelby Wyatt, Raina Amin, Nimah Amin, Simon Asher, Eric Packer, Brandon Fletcher, Elias Harper and Caleb Haas. She gains a rival in Natalie Vasquez and later begins a romantic relationship with Ryan. The recruits were trained vigorously on a daily basis, learning different lessons presented every week by the supervising training agent, Liam O'Connor under the guidance of Deputy Director, Miranda Shaw. Sometime later, Alex discovers that Liam had hired Ryan to spy on her from day one and even earlier. She also learns the truth about her father.
After the merging of two different classes at Quantico in early 2016, Alex is partnered with Drew Perales, who used to play for the Chicago Bears before joining the Bureau. Several other NATs are also included as part of the merge, including Iris Chang and Will Olsen. During her training at Quantico, Alex learns that Liam and Ryan were indirectly responsible for an incident of gang violence that took the life of Drew's girlfriend and led him to join the FBI, a source of tension between Liam and Drew. Later, Drew and Alex become romantically involved before Drew is kicked out of the Academy for medical reasons. After successfully completing their training at Quantico, Alex and her remaining classmates graduate from the Academy with offers to work in field offices across the nation.
About a year after her arrival at Quantico and several months after the successful completion of her training, Alex lived in New York City. She was preparing to work the security detail for the upcoming Democratic National Convention, before someone kidnapped her. On the morning of the convention, Alex was seen, awakening from the ruins of the Grand Central Terminal, and discovered, that it was destroyed several hours earlier with high-grade explosives. Later, Alex is taken into custody and learned that, she was the prime suspect of the terrorist attack on Grand Central. After she was charged for the attack, she was taken into a prisoner transport vehicle. Later, it was revealed that the driver of the vehicle, was none other than her former mentor at the Academy, Miranda Shaw. Miranda aids Alex's initial escape and warns her to evade capture from the authorities as she is now considered a high level fugitive.
Alex tried to prove her innocence in the Grand Central Terminal bombing case with the help of her classmates at Quantico as well as from the rogue hacking group dubbed "The Unknown". Later, it is revealed that the suspected bomber was former FBI analyst-trainee Elias Harper, who had planted the bomb under the instruction of a terrorist mastermind. Having cleared her name in a congressional hearing, Alex is reinstated as an FBI agent and assigned to the field office in New York City, specifically the operations section. She tried to uncover the true mastermind behind the bombings, but prior to the 2016 election day, the terrorist kills Natalie Vasquez and Drew Perales to force Alex into doing their bidding. At the end, Liam is revealed to be the traitor, with Alex and Ryan killing him in Yes. After the bombings, the ensuing publicity, and Simon Asher's death, Alex is fired from the FBI. Two months after the 2016 United States presidential election, Alex is approached by Matthew Keyes, the director of the Central Intelligence Agency, who extends an offer for her to join and work for the organization.
Six months after accepting the offer, Alex is seen, working a desk job as an analyst at the Agency, while living with Shelby and continuing her relationship with Ryan, who later becomes her fiancé. Later, she is given an opportunity to train at Camp Peary, to become a CIA officer.
At Camp Peary, she is joined with other recruits, including Harry Doyle, Dayana Mampasi, Sebastian Chen, León Velez, Leigh Davis and Jeremy Miller. Ryan later joins the other recruits at the site, much to Alex's surprise. Some time after her recruitment, Alex has a meeting with Matthew Keyes and Miranda Shaw. It is revealed that she was recruited by the CIA as part of an FBI undercover mission. Ryan was also selected to be a part of the mission. The goal of the mission was to infiltrate Camp Peary, in order to uncover the AIC, a rogue faction of the Central Intelligence Agency. After their secret meeting with Matthew Keyes and Miranda Shaw, Alex and Ryan, both commit to their mission, in order to expose the members of the AIC within the training facility. They each get assigned, case handlers as part of the operation. Later, it is revealed that Shelby Wyatt is assigned to be Alex's handler, while Ryan's handler for the operation is Nimah Amin.
Owen Hall is confirmed to be the primary CIA instructor for the training site at The Farm. In addition, Lydia Hall is later revealed to be another trainer on-site. Alex and the other recruits undergo a series of training assessments in order to become future clandestine workers of the Agency. After being kicked out of The Farm by Lydia, Alex goes back to working as an analyst. In addition, she breaks off her engagement with Ryan, some time before the 2018 G-20 hostage crisis in New York.
During a hostage crisis at the 2018 G-20 summit in New York, Alex witnesses the execution of the First Lady before disguising herself as a member of the Citizens Liberation Front. She attempts to gain information about the terrorist group that was involved in orchestrating the crisis. Prior to escaping the financial district area, she manages to expose the conspirators within the FBI and CIA that are deeply connected to the Citizens Liberation Front as well as the AIC. The AIC is later revealed to be a rogue intelligence group within the CIA that had the backing of a shadow cabal syndicate.
Two weeks after the end of the hostage crisis, President Claire Haas and CIA director Matthew Keyes put forth a covert joint task force between the FBI and CIA. President Haas mentions that there were eight collaborators within the shadowy cabal group who are secretly involved with the AIC. Due to Lydia's actions, the collaborators gained access to sensitive U.S intelligence. This information was vital to their goal of controlling certain areas within the government. As a response, the task force is assigned to uncover the conspiracy and expose the involvement of the collaborators in orchestrating the hostage crisis. Alex is hired to be a member of the task force along with Ryan Booth, Nimah Amin, Shelby Wyatt, and Dayana Mampasi. The leader of the group is Clay Haas, a renowned political advisory strategist. Prior to the formation of the task force, Alex is re-instated as an FBI agent.
The team members are assigned missions to uncover the identities of the collaborators. They fail to achieve their goal after the media reports on the unsanctioned activities of the task force. Following the publicized accounts of the task force in the broadcast media, the Speaker of the House, Henry Roarke takes the opportunity to criticize Claire's presidency and calls for her impeachment. After Haas resigns from her presidency because of the scandal, it is revealed that Roarke has succeeded in being appointed as the President of the United States. Shortly after his inauguration, he requests a new Constitutional Convention to rewrite the United States Constitution.
In the days leading to the Constitutional Convention, Alex and the rest of the task force try to stop Roarke from getting the votes needed to allow the Convention to take place. After their initial plan fails, they resort to a final strategy. At the convention in Philadelphia, Alex publicly broadcasts Roarke's recordings with the Federal Security Service and emails the evidence to the ACLU and other rights organizations, before having Miranda fake her death by shooting her at the event. Roarke, not willing to face the press or the police, commits suicide.
Due to Alex committing treason by releasing classified U.S intelligence to the public at the Constitutional Convention, she is branded as a fugitive of the United States. Sitting together in a car, Owen mentions to Alex that she needs to maintain her cover to evade capture from domestic and international law enforcement agencies, due to being issued an INTERPOL Red Notice for her arrest. Along with Ryan, she leaves the country on a plane to an unknown international destination.
- She is a former FBI agent.
- She is a former NAT at Quantico.
- She was a former suspect in the Grand Central bombing case.
- In Turn, there was a particular scene that highlighted Alex's room. She had a stuffed bear with a UC Berkeley sweater on her desk. This suggests that she might have attended the University of California, Berkeley prior to enrolling at the FBI academy.
- She is Indian American.
- In Clear, her Myers-Briggs personality test revealed that she is an ENFP, also known as "The Champion"
- Two months after the presidential election, Alex is approached by the CIA director Matthew Keyes, who provides an opportunity for her to join and work for the organization.
- After accepting the offer, Alex worked as an analyst at the CIA while living with Shelby and continuing her relationship with Ryan. Sometime later, she became a CIA recruit.
- She is a former love interest of Drew Perales.
- In Care, they slept together in a cabin.
- She is a former fiancée of Ryan Booth.
- After the events in EPICSHELTER, Alex becomes part of the covert joint task force put forth by President Claire Haas and CIA director Matthew Keyes. The task force was assembled to take out terror threats to the country made possible by Lydia Hall who uploaded one of the intelligence drives to the internet during the conclusion of the G-20 hostage crisis in New York. The task force also includes; Ryan Booth, Nimah Amin, Shelby Wyatt and Dayana Mampasi.
- In LNWILT, Alex is re-instated to work again as an FBI agent. This information was highlighted in a conversation with Shelby Wyatt.
- In MOCKINGBIRD, Alex's file report which contained classified personal information was vetted by Owen Hall and Clay Haas in a private meeting. The latter wanted to find out if Alex had the capacity to fulfill her role within the designated task force.
- In RESISTANCE, it was revealed that Alex committed treason by releasing U.S classified intelligence to the public. As a result of her actions at the Constitutional Convention, she is branded as a fugitive of the United States. Later, Owen provided a burner phone and multiple passports to Alex in order to help her escape from the country. Soon after, he mentioned to Alex of the importance of maintaining cover so as to evade capture from domestic and international law enforcement agencies as a result of being issued an INTERPOL Red Notice. Along with Ryan, she leaves the country on a plane to an unknown international destination.
- In the same episode, it was revealed that the remaining members of the former task force watched the news segment that depicted the aftermath of Alex's disappearance after the Convention ended. The television presenter mentioned that there were reports of unconfirmed sightings of Alex in Belgrade, Serbia.
- In the second season, her signature Om bracelet is replaced by a silver, metallic ring.
- Her original bracelet was worn on her left wrist while her new ring is worn on the pinky finger of her right hand.