I’ve mostly been baffled by a lot of the discussion about Booth and Brennan lately. It’s not that I don’t respect that people see things differently than I do – I do! – but rather, well, I’m just seeing something else. When reading through some comments about what we aren’t seeing this season, the voice inside my head keeps going, ‘but what about this? And that? And that other scene?’
So yesterday morning I started jotting down some of those moments, and since there’s no new episode this week, I thought I’d share them. Just to be clear, this isn’t me saying anyone is wrong because they’re not having the same response I am to these scenes and this season, not at all. But this is a partial list of why I’m a happy fan girl.
These are in no particular order, by the way. I pretty much went with the order that they occurred to me when I started jotting them down. Also? I was aiming for ten (though there are plenty more) but, well, counting isn’t my forte anyway, and I couldn’t figure out which ones to exclude.
1. Fight and Aftermath, The Lance to the Heart
I think at the core of it, what we all want is to know that someone will be there for us, no matter what, will catch us when we fall. But it gets complicated when we make, or contribute, to our own crisis.
“Booth, you are the one who’s running away! You’re running away from everything you believe in. Why? Because it’s not going the way you want it to? Because it’s too difficult for you? What kind of man does that make you? How will you face your God if you kill an innocent man? Is your faith in him so weak? Your faith in…me?You’re a good man, Booth. Don’t let them take that away – that really will be the death of you.”
Booth’s response to Sweets’ murder and his unjust incarceration, unchecked, would have destroyed his life. And riding on betrayal, grief, and completely justified rage, he doesn’t want her to pull him back…but she does, because she loves him too much to lose him; needs him too much for him not to be the man he is really is.
She saved him from dying in jail; here she saves him from himself.
And when he breaks, and chooses their life together over blind vengeance, she’s still there, picking up the pieces. It’s a beautiful scene, a powerful reminder that love is more than just saying, “I love you.”
2. Breakfast, The Geek in the Guck
I sometimes wonder if someone had told me five years ago that we’d someday see a scene of Booth and Brennan having breakfast with their daughter that ended with Brennan casually saying, “I love you both,” what my response would have been. (How many ways are there to communicate disbelief in English?)
I never doubted they’d be together, and I believed Hart when he said it wouldn’t be at the end of the show. But at least four seasons with them as a couple? The Best Wedding Ever? Getting to watch them be not only lovers, but a family? For years? Yeah, I’ve got an active imagination but it didn’t extend that far.
So scenes like this one, where all of that comes home to me, make me happy in a warm, fuzzy way.
3. Brennan’s Speech, The Corpse at the Convention
I commented on this one fairly extensively in my review of the episode, but I love the way they focus so totally on each other when she’s getting ready to give her speech. He’s so freaking proud of her, and the way her eyes are locked on him? He’s the only one in the room who really matters, never mind that he’s not going to understand a word she says. Their bond is never stronger than at that moment.
4. Love Scene, The Conspiracy in the Corpse
One of the things I’ve always loved is how the show finds ways to show the balance of power between them. They’re equals – each with strengths that complement the other. Here? She’s the strong one, and in some ways, this scene strikes me as a parallel to the bedroom scene in The Hole in the Heart, where that role belonged to him. There, she was broken by Vincent’s death, and he knew how to comfort her; here, she does the same thing for him. He’s broken, both physically and emotionally, and while making love to him doesn’t fix everything, it’s a beginning, a movement toward reclaiming their normal.
(Also…I don’t have words for how much I love that expression on her face as she looks at him. At this point in time, she’s the one with all the faith in the power of their love, in the power of her love for him. And That. Is. Awesome.)
5. Comfort Dance, The Lost Love in the Foreign Land
There are two components to this for me. The first is what they share about their feelings for one another, particularly Brennan’s reflections on how easily they might have missed the chance to spend their lives together. (I also love that she’s touching him, her hand wrapped around his wrist. It’s like she can’t bear not to have that physical connection right then.)
But the second is the dance, which builds on that need to touch for comfort. For so long people fixated on the sexual tension between them, and yet, when they need comfort, they turn to holding one another while they dance. Not exclusively, perhaps, but this is the second time we’ve seen them do so (the first being the end of Big in the Philippines), and I love what that says about what they need from one another.
6. The Schmo Conversation, The Puzzler in the Pit
Okay, this was silly, but I loved it enough to put the entire exchange in last week’s review. Why? Because this is Booth and Brennan as we’ve always known them, a callback, IMO, to the very beginning. Classic early season Booth and Brennan – what’s not to love?
It doesn’t even really matter whether or not she understood how he was using the term, and whether or not he understood that she knew perfectly well what he meant. This is the two of them, tweaking one another just to do so. And Aubrey? His bafflement as an outsider to their own private courtship ritual – never mind that they’ve been married for over a year – adds to the humor of it.
7. Discussing Sweets’ Death, The Lance to the Heart.
At the forum yesterday, I noted that Booth doesn’t share himself well with anyone but Brennan. As close as he was to Sweets, he never stopped playing a two-steps-forward-three-steps-back dance with him when it came to personal stuff – even when Booth initiated it, as he sometimes did. And even rarer are the times when we’ve seen him open up to someone else.
But Brennan? We seldom see him even try to obfuscate with her, and that’s never more heartbreaking than when we see them beginning to process Sweets’ death, just hours after it happened. The break in his voice tells us everything we need to know about where he is emotionally. And Brennan? Even her strength falters when Christine comes out announcing she’s ready to go to the park with Sweets and Daisy, so she leads the little girl to Booth, and together they find the words to explain death to their daughter.
The whole scene is gut-wrenching, but there’s also something beautiful to me in watching them navigate such a terrible reality together. While I would never have chosen for Sweets to die, life sucks at times, and I like seeing that they really are stronger than whatever life throws at them.
8. S&M Conversation, The Purging in the Pundit
“Bones, S&M isn’t a peanut butter cup. It’s not two great tastes that go together.”
“You enjoy being bitten.”
“What? No, I don’t.”
“When we make love, sometimes I nibble your ear, your response is…very positive, to say the least.”
“Look, a nibble’s a lot different from being whipped.”
“All degrees of the same thing.”
“The Inquisition would have been a lot different with nibbling, if you ask me.”
Can I make a confession? I find this the, um, hottest conversation they’ve ever had. In fact, it’s a contender for hottest scene, period, and they’re fully clothed. I’m not really sure why, but I think it’s because having spent so long watching them not have sex, to hear them discussing making love in this manner, with the smug, completely satisfied way Brennan says, ‘very positive, to say the least,’ just does something to me. (Is it hot in here?)
9. Interrogating the Killer, The Corpse at the Convention
One of my favorite things is their personal asides when they’re interrogating a suspect; there’s a certain intimacy about them having a unique-to-them moment while sitting across from a potential killer.
Here, it’s that Brennan can’t quite hide her admiration for the man’s genius, never mind they already know he’s a murderer.
10. Reunion, The Conspiracy in the Corpse
I have a soft spot for reunions, anyway, but this one just gets me. I’ve spent some time thinking about the differences between their reunion at the beginning of season eight (in the hotel, after Brennan was on the run with Christine for three months) and here, and there’s a very different tone to them.
I think it’s because in The Future in the Past, neither of them ever gave up hope. There were some messy emotions they would have to work through, but there’s nothing to suggest that while she was on the run, he ever doubted what he’d said to Max at the end of the season 7 finale about getting his family back.
It wrecks me, and yet there’s a fierce joy, too. Because Brennan blackmailed a judge to gain his freedom, and I know they’re going to be okay – she won’t settle for anything else.
11. Figuring Out the Location of the Files, The Lance to the Heart
There’s been a lot of discussion recently about their professional relationship, and most of what’s come out of it for me is that we all have very different views of what it even means for them to be partners.
But this scene, which is not only one of my favorites from this season, is also my favorite moment of the two of them working a case together from all 198 episodes we’ve seen so far. Aubrey’s there for part of it, and contributes to the discussion, but he might as well be on Pluto – they’re focused on each other, trading ideas back and forth, making leaps only they’re following as they rush to the answer. They’re not two separate people here, but a unit, solving a puzzle that only they could solve.
12. Beer Hat, The Geek in the Guck
I adore this scene, partly because it tells us more about their love life (mental image transition: Booth in the tub with the beer hat from The Pain in the Heart becomes Booth and Brennan in the tub, sharing the beer); partly because I love the contradictory sides to Brennan, who considers herself both sexually adventuresome and rigid; and partly because I simply love the beer hat.
These people have been part of my life for a very long time now, and I enjoy call backs to those early years – they add a layer of authenticity to the story for me.
Plus, it’s a beer hat.
13. Brennan Explains the Jackass Rules, The Moneymaker on the Merry-Go-Round
I don’t know about anyone else, but part of why I love them so much is that there are so many facets to their personalities, and to their relationship. Silly, heartbreaking, sexy, romantic, bickering, supportive…the list is endless, and thus seeing them together never gets old. Here, we’ve got smug Booth – who’s not above teasing her – but they’re clearly still a family, as he holds Christine while encouraging her mom to dig her way out of the hole she’s buried them in. It’s both fun and sweet, and another of those ‘pinch me’ moments I still get on occasion.
So there you have it. Granted, I’m lucky in liking a lot more about the show than just Booth and Brennan (including the other characters, their relationships, and above all else, being on Team!Team) but their relationship is the center of the show for me. When I think about what we’ve seen there so far, I’m swamped with feelings, and that makes me stupid happy with the season.