Bones: Back to School

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April 18, 2010

3:44 PM

Following the bombshell that was last week’s episode was a tall order; it seems that the writers of “Bones” perfectly understood that fact and decided to use this week as a pause for some much-needed comedic relief. This week’s episode focused on Brennan investigating a case that took her back to her high school, where a school reunion brought together a number of creepy characters.

To begin, I have to say I literally cringed at this opener. Seriously? A Katy Perry reference as an excuse to shoot a lesbian makeout scene? C’mon writers, I expect more than these gimmicks from you. The only redeeming feature of this scene was the absolutely (and probably unintentionally) hilarious introduction of the body; a raccoon with a maggot-covered skull stuck on its head interrupts their intimate moment by barreling into one of the girls’ faces. The local sheriff shows up and hits on Booth, only to have Brennan reintroduce herself and point out embarrassing details from their mutual high school past. They find the body has been dismembered and fits the description of a local urban legend about a murderous cannibal who eats the ribs of his victims.

One of the weirdest, and admittedly, most bizarrely funny-whilst-unsettling features of this episode was guest star Robert Englund of “Freddy Kreuger” fame. He utilized his wealth of horror-genre experience to perfect the role of creepy janitor Ray Buxley, Brennan’s sole companion during high school who often provided her with dead animals to dissect. I cannot begin to describe how I reacted to his introduction. He emerges slowly out of the shadows of a room filled with an arsenal of rusty blades, carrying a plate of barbecued ribs. When asked about the abundance of knives, he muses in a gravelly and stoic tone, “A man never knows when he might need to cut.” I couldn’t even function, I was laughing so hard. Probably not the intent, but effective nonetheless. Only more perfect was Brennan’s complete unconcern for his grade-A weird behavior. The two are a perfect, morbid, socially inept pair.

As Brennan and Booth investigate the murder of the most popular girl in Brennan’s class, they present themselves as husband and wife, allowing for a plethora of awkward and hilarious moments. A highlight was Booth explaining to a curious classmate that he and Brennan plan to have children, and Brennan over-enthusiastically exclaims, “Yes, we have intercourse every chance we get!” Perfect. For once, the writers decided to actually reference the events of the previous episode immediately. While talking to Sweets, Booth admits that he has moved on and has a date next week. Later in the episode when a slow song comes on at the dance, Booth tries to leave the dance floor and Brennan acknowledges that it could be awkward but begs him to dance anyway because “It’s Seal!” (Sidenote: 90’s music for the win.) This reference to Brennan’s rejection was painful but refreshing, because all too often the episodes skirt around the difficult parts of prior episodes, such as the episodes following Angela and Hodgins’ breakup.

Speaking of, I’m quite satisfied with the way this season has been laying the groundwork for a reconciliation between Angela and Hodgins. In this episode, Hodgins accidentally informs Wendall of Angela’s “baby daddy scare” and this understandably upsets him. He tells Angela he would “do the right thing” and marry her if she wanted, but Angela begins to see the differences in Hodgins’ proposal and Wendall’s. Ultimately, Angela and Wendall decide to end their relationship, and this seems to open her up to the possibility of returning to Hodgins. I approve, “Bones”; I approve most heartily.

After a parade of blade-wielding classmates are introduced as potential suspects, it is ultimately determined that the victim’s best friend murdered her because they had a deal to share her husband—a fellow classmate they had killed over in high school as well. The episode concludes with the Jeffersonian gang at the Founding Father’s bar, and Brennan notes that she doesn’t regret attending her reunion because, “It made me see how lucky I am. Now. This is what friendship looks like. This table. I am very lucky.” Cue up an adorable, music-accompanied montage of the cast laughing and smiling and being generally adorable and you’ve got a bubbly conclusion to a nice filler episode. Next week we have the introduction of a new love interest for Booth and the return of the heinous Agent Hacker, so the interactions in this love-quadrangle should be interesting.

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