I’m not afraid to admit it; the whole “Pleasantville” concept really freaks me out. The suburbs can be scary, and that’s coming from someone who grew up in them. In this episode of “Bones,” we see the true horrors of this creepily idyllic style of living realized at a neighborhood block party where the party-goers discover the barbequed remains of one of their own kind in a pig-roasting pit, complete with oh-so-stylish aviators glued to his now-charred face.
This episode of “Bones” drew undeniably hilarious comparisons to shows like “Desperate Housewives,” right down to the young and frequently shirtless neighborhood gardener who sleeps around with the ladies of the cul-de-sac. The whole episode had an oddly comedic air about it; I mean, a body that crackles and pops like a bowl of rice krispies? How can you beat that?
At the Jeffersonian, we have the return of two recurring characters; Arastoo Vaziri, the soft-spoken and devout Muslim intern, and the oh-so-adorable Parker Booth. I was thrilled to see that cherubic face again, as he always provides the best Booth/Bones moments, and he certainly didn’t fail to deliver in this episode.
Booth leaves Parker with babysitter Angela, who promises Parker non-washable face paint that will endlessly irk his father. When she chimed, “You’re with me, baby Booth!” I definitely grinned. As Angela paints his face and awkwardly tries explaining celibacy, she asks him why he thinks his father needs a girlfriend. Needless to say, Parker delivers what I can only describe as one of the best lines in all of “Bones” history: “To sex up!” Thank you, Parker, for that succinct explanation.
Random side plot: Apparently, Arastoo has been faking his accent. He screams at Cam and lo-and-behold, Vaziri’s got an American accent. I found it almost comical how obsessed Cam became with explaining why he had been lying about it, running to Sweets and notifying Booth and Bones, and the squints were oddly unsettled. In a conversation with Sweets, Arastoo admits that he fakes the accent because it prevents him from having to repeatedly explain his faith in the context of science, especially as most of his coworkers are atheists. Nice. Although, the accent was kind of cute. Without it I just think of him as the sleazy version of himself from “The End in the Beginning.”
Back to the actual case; cue Frank Sinatra crooning “The Good Life” while Booth profiles the various characters of the neighborhood. The duo assesses the mental well-being of most of the inhabitants, which proves to be quite the task. Suburban politics and scandals reveal countless potential murderers, but few are ever fleshed out enough to gain our sympathy or even really convince us of a motive. One thing’s for certain; practically everyone and their mother — literally — was sleeping with the dead guy. Sweets offers his own insights, and snaps: “Keep your grubby anthro hands off my psych!” when Brennan challenges him, citing the ongoing argument between the two disciplines in the show.
One garage full of sex toys and a bicycle later, we find out that the victim was dealt three separate blows — each by a different murderer. Turns out three of the residents conspired to kill him because the victim poisoned one’s dog, blackmailed and ripped off another, and the last — well, he slept with her daughter in addition to her. I laughed quite hard when one of the murderers actually tried to bike away from Booth. What a horrible idea, honestly. The case is solved and Booth and Bones conclude the episode in their hallowed booth at the Royal Diner, this time with the company of a paint-splotched Parker.
The diner scene is by far one of the best of the episode, although there were plenty of aww-worthy Booth/Bones moments throughout; namely, Brennan agreeing to go out to eat with Booth and Parker, and saying “I will be your hamlet of 800 people or less.” Despite Booth’s protests, Bones is determined to remedy the whole sex-obsession Parker seems to have developed (by this point in the episode, he has asked every female member of the cast to be his dad’s girlfriend at one point or another).
When Parker asks Brennan if she could be Booth’s girlfriend, she replies “That would be inappropriate.” And this is why I love Parker; he doesn’t leave it at that. He asks the questions the fans are always asking themselves but rarely get answered. “Why?”
Brennan pauses and says (albeit with a bit of hesitation, I must note), “Because… we work together.” Parker’s brilliant response? “That’s a stupid reason.” Yes! Because even eight-year-old children know that that’s a stupid excuse for two people in love to not be together. In the end, we realize Parker only wanted Booth to get a girlfriend so he could get a pool (brilliant use of syllogistic logic, Parker), but the episode concludes with Booth and Brennan agreeing that she’s awesome. Awesome, but still infuriatingly oblivious or just too reluctant to act on their mutual feelings.
And what’s this nonsense in the promo for the next episode about her and Booth’s boss? I am not pleased!