I’m uniquely qualified to discuss this series; not because the main character shares my surname, or because I’ve read nearly every Kathy Reichs book, or even because I’ve seen every episode of the television series. It’s because I watched all seven seasons in less than four months, finishing only days before the second half of season seven started.
I love this show. I love the characters, the mysteries, the forensics, the grit, the dark humor, and the quirkiness. It’s brilliantly written with strong actors and they haven’t slacked off on story, which can happen in a long running series. A brave, handsome, smart hero paired with an intelligent, capable, independent heroine and a well-developed cast of secondary characters. It’s definitely one of my all-time favorite shows.
I have a few pet peeves. I still haven’t bought into Zach being the apprentice (those who have watched from the beginning know what I mean!), Brennan isn’t stupid and she’s usually very consistent and reasoned in her behavior, but sometimes she does TSTL things that have me banging my head (like driving toward the tornado.) I really dislike intern Daisy. I know she’s written to be annoying, but every time I see her at the beginning of the show I sigh in frustration. Wendell is my favorite, now that Dr. Nigel-Murray is gon …(As an aside, Nigel-Murray was annoying, too, but he didn’t bug me like Daisy does. She’s like one of those little yap-yap dogs from the cartoons jumping around all bubbly. And every time she calls Sweets “Lancelot,” I want to slap her. When they broke up at the beginning of Season Six, I was ecstatic! But alas, they’re back together.)
But all these pet peeves are minor compared to my Big Pet Peeve, and unfortunately, they can do nothing to fix it.
For six seasons, they’ve built upon the sexual tension between Brennan and Booth. Most of the time, it’s been so well done that it harkened back to the days when Moonlighting was great (except with smarter dialogue and better plots!) I loved how the writers built their relationship on mutual respect and trust, with enough differences where they complement each other as well as grow frustrated at times.
But season six, as a whole, was weak, and at the end they blew it.
For six years (or, for me, four months) viewers have been waiting for the pay-off. Something between the characters to click, a passionate kiss, a declaration of love, something big and juicy and satisfying.
What did we get? We got Brennan staying with Booth after a tragedy, going to his bed, and then…nothing. Not even a kiss. Then, Brennan goes to Angela and is about to tell her what happened…then nothing. We don’t get to hear anything. Not even a hint, just a teeny smile. They brought us along for the ride, and right when we were going to get everything we’ve been waiting for? They dropped the ball.
Then at the beginning of season seven, Brennan and Booth are together. Brennan is pregnant. They’re looking for a house to share. They say “I love you” like they’ve said it a hundred times.
I wanted to hear it the first time.
I wanted to see how they looked at each other that first moment when they both realized that they are willing to risk everything to try to make the relationship work. I wanted to see that first passionate kiss where you know they know they love each other—and I’m not talking about the kiss under the mistletoe in season three!
They don’t need to jump into bed all the time like Hodgins and Angela, they don’t need to paw each other or talk about sex. What they need to do is be themselves—and the show producers need to show us thirty seconds more. The connection.
The writers are redeeming themselves with what promises to be a terrific end to the truncated season seven. Episode 7 ended on a high, happy note, we have a terrific arch-villain introduced in episode 6, and the story promise—from what’s happened in the past—is that everyone is at risk. I’m optimistic because the mystery storylines have consistently been strong, but because they screwed up the first real kiss and the first ‘I love you’, I’m not confident that they won’t screw up the love story.
There’s always the problem in Hollywood that they think when they get two characters together for good that the show slides. I don’t think Bones has that problem because the core story has never been about love, it’s been about suspense and the relationships. The love story was an added bonus, like in many romantic thrillers, and there are plenty of natural conflicts between Booth’s world-view and Brennan’s to keep the ebb and flow of tension.
This is just my opinion, of course. What do you think?
Allison Brennan is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of eighteen novels and many short stories. A former consultant in the California State Legislature, she lives in Northern California with her husband Dan and their five children.