The follow-up season of Fox’s hit series (based on a book written by an anthropologist) had a few new dynamics working for it. One of which were romantic sparks between its leading couple where season one built a friendship and nothing more. Fortunately for fans that prefer their television to bring cleaner scripts to the table, the first half of this season is tolerably clean – and then the second half rolls around.
Resulting from a car sitting in the middle of the train tracks, a train has crashed and killed three others on the passenger train – including a prominent senator. The body of a man is found in the car suggesting suicide but best-selling author and anthropologist Dr. Temperance “Bones” Brennan (Emily Deschanel) finds evidence to the contrary. She doesn’t think that the man who authorities tentatively identify as a well-known business entrepreneur is really that man – and he certainly did not commit suicide. Her FBI partner Seeley Booth (David Boreanaz) comes under pressure from more than one person to see the case closed quickly because of the high-profile death tangled up in the case. Intersecting with their case is the arrival of the new head of forensics at the Jeffersonian, and Bones new boss, Dr. Saroyan (Tamera Taylor). Coincidentally, the woman also happens to have a romantic past with Booth – something Dr. Jack Hodgins (TJ Thyne) quickly picks up on after he overhears their conversation. After that it isn’t long before the entire staff knows.
Throughout the whole case, Bones cannot stand the woman and her authoritative way of going about running the Jeffersonian – Bones and the “squint squad” like the way things were done and as it always meted results, Bones sees no reason to carry on in that same vein. Why mess with a good thing? Zack Addy (Eric Milligan) has finally completed the requirements to become a full-fledged anthropologist, but since he is no longer a student, his new title puts his job in jeopardy because his boss feels uncomfortable putting someone like him on the witness stand should any trials arise. Meanwhile the free-spirited Angela (Michaela Conlin) finds her life complicated when she and a co-worker realize there is more than just meaningless sparks of chemistry between them.
If anything, Bones has steadily gotten better since its debut – something that is not unusual for a network show. There is a strong emphasis on relationships and the meanings behind them, and as it would happen becomes an important subject over the whole scope of season three. Some of the best “Bones memories” are found during these twenty-one episodes. I’ve been so entertained by the relationships within this team of scientists, lawmen and “normal” people (i.e., Angela). Angela is such an integral part of the show – I appreciate her friendship with Brennan and the ways she can get through to her unemotional personality where no one else is able to (also her calling Brennan “sweetie” is so endearing). We also finally meet Bones father (Ryan O’Neal) and find ourselves struggling with a love-hate relationship in regards to his character. On the one hand we semi-like him as a character (although he turned his son into being just like him – a fugitive) and on the other we despise him for his misuse of his daughter’s fragile trust and emotions.
More amusing and some of the less-serious topics include one character undergoing a makeover, Bones falling for a guy who wants her to run away with him, and two others planning a wedding only to have it interrupted. I loved the finale of season two. It was whimsical (not a word I would use to describe Bones in general, believe me), yet not a cliffhanger that left us with our mouth hanging open… but there were some hints of unanswered questions used as incentive for fans to want to come back for a brand-new season of crime-solving. From reviews and other’s remarks I do know that later seasons do end with shockers but so far I’ve liked that this show hasn’t ended with a host of surprises because when it all comes right down to it, the sign of a “better” show is when writers don’t have to use some sort of a bombshell twist to get their audience to return for the next season.
There are some sobering cases and some enlightening ones. “The Girl with the Curl” and “The Stargazer in the Puddle” are both gloomy looks at a mother’s idea of “love.” The former is a glimpse inside the pageants young girls participate in and the latter is just twisted. Be on the look-out for one of the most emotional episodes yet involving a near death situation and two of the main characters. (The one episode that was priceless is called “The Woman in the Sand.”) Whatever the episode, the one thing we can always be assured of with this investigative team is creativity. That alone speaks for itself.
(Rated TV14 for some mature content: dozens of bodies are seen in varying forms of decompose. Each victim dies different ways – some are raped, others stabbed, and some are “boiled,” others shot to death. Several people are seen in bed together this season. One episode puts Booth in bed with his ex in the opening of the show, and by the end, he has fallen into bed with a different ex-girlfriend. Continuing with a casual attitude about intimacy, Bones is seen about three times in varying states of undress and in bed with her boyfriend; Angela and Hodgins are constantly making out at work [we see them under the covers once]. Sexual remarks are made and there is the standard use of profanity.)