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Bones Review: The Perfect Crime

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Am I alone or does this season of Bones feel incredibly disconnected and unevenly told? Surely, I can't be the only one seeing this, right? Please tell me I'm not alone.

While there have been some standout episodes in Bones season 8, there have been far more installments where perhaps most of the script never should've made it out of the writer's room. 

"The Shot in the Dark?" It felt more like a shoot and a miss to me.

Shot in the Dark Photo

Tonight started out in a decent place and quickly devolved into something that only sort of resembles the show we love.

This season has been about seeing Booth and Bones as a couple instead of just partners, so their fight, while ridiculous and perhaps overblown, seemed normal. Couples don't agree all the time. They argue. Sometimes about things like one person being more spontaneous than the other. That totally happens. It felt like we were seeing a different side of the two of them than the typical, happy couple who gets along all the time. I can accept and even welcome that.

But the minute Bones stormed out the door in such an over-dramatic fashion, it was clear that the only purpose their fight served was as a way to get her back to the Jeffersonian and for Booth to come and find her on the floor of the bone room. That's it. And that's the point at which this episode took a nosedive.

I went into this episode knowing we would see Bones have conversations with her mother, and several of those are on the Bones quotes page. But I had no idea what those conversations would entail, or that the scenes would be so...flashy. I actually chuckled when Bones tore open the door to the living room and tumbled into the light. I don't think that was the writers' intended response at all.

I don't doubt that people who have near-death experiences walk away from said experiences changed people. I'm truly okay taking peoples' word for it that they have been changed by said experiences. But it felt like Christine said to Brennan, "Hey, you know? You can use your heart again instead of just your head. It's cool."

Actually, that's almost exactly what she said:

Christine: The advice I gave you back then, use your head, be rational, don't let your heart lead you, use your brain. That allowed you to survive, and it held true. But I have another piece of advice for you. It's time for you to find some of that little girl that you locked away so deep inside yourself.
Bones: Why?
Christine: Because it's not about surviving anymore. It's about flourishing. It's about living a full life. | permalink

Yes, we want Brennan to live a full life, to flourish. But Brennan would probably say that she has lived a full life and is flourishing. The rest of us would also say that over time and through her relationships with Angela, Booth, Christine, and everyone else at the Jeffersonian, Brennan has found parts of that girl she tucked away when her parents left so suddenly. 

While her parents' disappearance no doubt caused severe emotional trauma, I've always sort of assumed that Brennan was always overly rational and incredibly intelligent and didn't just become that way overnight. To hear her mother tell it, Brennan was just a normal, average teenager crushing on boys, planning her next outfit, and getting into trouble and then suddenly became a genius devoted to her studies and nothing else because her mother's last words were to use her brain instead of her heart.

I know she turned to books as a way to cope with her time in foster homes, but this episode just rewrote history.

I actually liked the science of this week's case. Hal, the security guard, and Brennan were both shot but no bullets were found upon examination. After Brennan described the wound as being cold, Hodgins posited that someone had figured out how to make and shoot frozen bullets, determining that they were made from blood after Brennan had a reaction to foreign antigens in her system. 

We also got the return of Agent Sparling and the reveal that shortly after breaking up with Daisy, she and Sweets went out a few times and slept together and he never called. I think there's potential for the two of them and I wouldn't mind seeing more of her. She's a likable enough character so far.

The major complaint with this episode - and it's an enormous complaint - is that it was and is an attempt to completely rewrite Brennan's character. It undoes everything we know and love about the rational side of Bones and flies in the face of all the small, subtle changes we've watched her make over 8 seasons all because she had a conversation with her mother while she flat-lined on a table in an operating room.

She'll suddenly become emotional and sentimental and while she as a character is capable of changing, this was arguably the worst way to bring about said changes. Because her late mother said so.

Dear Shark, Consider yourself jumped. Sincerely, Bones

What did you think of "The Shot In The Dark?" Do you think this was an attempt to rewrite Brennan's character or speed up her development? 

Review

Editor Rating: 2.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.0 / 5.0 (225 Votes)

Miranda Wicker is a Staff Writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.

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Gah the picking over every little thing on Bones lately is getting on my last nerve. ...Do I think Brennan will believe in God now? NO I don't. She is a still a woman of science and everything that happened to her during meeting with her mother could be easily explained as just a vivid dream with a combined rememberance of her own buried deep memories ....Do I think that Brennan as a partner to Booth and a parent to Christine needs to lighten up a little, stop being so controlling and be a little more fun and not to live her life experiences with them through the guide of a science book? YES I do!!! ....and that was all the ep was trying to say imo. Stop and smell the roses love.

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I was surprised by such a negative review for The Shot in The Dark, as I really enjoyed this episode. It had sweet moments between Booth & Brennan, the Jeffersonian team was highlighted as they worked together to solve who shot Brennan, and the interesting science casework and discovery of the "blood bullet". I didn't think that Brennan's rational history was re-written. The science part of Brennan will strongly continue to guide who Brennan is, but her "near-death experience" will help her open her up to other views. Obviously Brennan won't change overnight after almost a lifetime of rational thinking, but the effects of the experience will act as yet another stepping stone in her character growth.

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loved the episode, the love between Booth and Brennan was beautifúl, it shone brightly and made me smile.

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Dear some fans if you aren't enjoying watching Bones anymore then find something that you are enjoying to watch....Move on....The show is what it is now. and the writers will do what they want want and they don't need to consult the small % representation of the loud online fans footstomping, when they see 8M+ (current viewership} online posting then maybe they will take note..... Bottom line, nobody is forcing you to watch it, it's your choice. Life is too to short

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If you don't watch Bones, have not watched in a while or not watched this episode then your point of view and opinion of the show currently and saìd episode is completely INVALID and quite frankly you have too much time on your hands trolling websites for Bones articles and reviews to spew your distain. Get a life.

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I loved most everything about this episode. It moved me. No one said Brennan was going to change completely, or that she only became brilliant and studious because of her mother's comment. What would be so bad about her working to become more spontaneous? Bren doesn't say she now believes in God. She doesn't change completely. With decades of living as objectively and unemotionally as she has, her neural networks are hard wired to be the way she is ... Brennan knows this. The case - the blood bullet was brilliant. I expected to see Booth a little more visibly distraught at the hospital by shedding a few tears. I have watched the episode three times ... catching new things every time. The experiences with her mother were supposed to be fantastical. I think we will see that some of the very poignant things she said will give Brennan a lot to think about. 1)That leaving her daughter was extremely difficult for Christine, and that it basically broke her heart 2) That Brennan thinks she can understand that which is not able to be understood 3) That her mother loved her. The closure of getting to say she missed and loved her mother is also big.

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En las entrevistas que he leído, no se habla de que Brennan cambie completamente; yo simplemente lo veo como el capitulo para que ella cerrara esos cavos sueltos y esos vacíos de tantos años por culpa de sus padres. Me gusto mucho el capitulo.

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THANK YOU for your review! So many people have been keen to jump on the bandwagon of 'changing' Brennan to fit what Booth thinks is ideal. What have they been watching these past 8 years then? I, for one was PO'd that Booth once again made insensitive remarks about Brennan's persona (which he does more often than ppl think). But yes, I chalked it to a couple's fight where it's normal for people to tend to say things they don't mean just to get a reaction. But this re-writing of Brennan's history is beyond ridiculous. How did she go from a gawky teen being bullied in high school to 'making out in closets' as hinted in the Dancing episode? Or in this episode where she's said to have fought with her mother over a boy? Wasn't it implied in earlier seasons that she was a genius since she was a kid and had limited social skills? They are re-writing her character and it's irritating that they think we're that stupid to buy into it when they've already spent years building a backstory for her. I will continue to watch the show because of my love for Emily and TJ and the fact that for some reason I'm emotionally invested in B&B but my expectations have been lagging since pod!Booth appeared in the 100th and it's only been diminishing ever since. That'll teach me to have high expectations when HH has shown us time and time again that he'll only disappoint. Thank you for a truly insightful review. I'm glad that there's at least one person who calls a spade a spade. Let's hope someone reads this and takes notice. Though my guess is that'll never happen.

Beverly-brooks

I feel sorry for Bones for fact she is an atheist. And Booth is a christian as you could tell he was praying a couple of times during Bones' out of body experience. Enjoy the show!

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I guess the one question I've always wanted to ask The rational side of Bones, is science has proven that you CAN NOT destroy energy! It converts from one form to another but can not be destroyed. Our bodies are controlled 100% by electricity. Every thought you have and every muscle that moves is because of electricity. So Bones, what happens to the electricity in your body when you die.As a scientist,she has to have some theory about it and as rational as she has been all these years,I am stunned as to her lack of faith. if this ep. can make her wonder a little bit more i'm all for it.as for frozen blood.What a concept. Over all I thought a good show.i see no problem with Bones growing and widening her views on the possibilities of the unknown.

Bones Season 8 Episode 15 Quotes

Bones: I have to get back. I have a daughter.
Christine: I know how you feel. Once I had to leave my daughter behind too. I'm pretty sure it killed me.

[to Bones] You are still the most stubborn creature on God's green earth.

Christine
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