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'Bones' recap: Booth gets serious, Hodgins gets ripped!

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Bones_lI know we all like Seeley Booth (David Boreanaz) because he’s charming and goofy, but, honestly, he’s never sexier to me than when he’s talking seriously about what it means to be a man. Last night’s episode was very interesting both in terms of the case at hand — an alleged teen pregnancy pact that resulted with a dead girl in a winter salt truck — and for how it could factor into two upcoming storylines that Michael Ausiello’s already SPOILED (Brennan asks Booth to father her child, Booth has a major illness)…

I’m beginning to wonder if bad jokes are a symptom of whatever medical crisis Booth experiences later this season. Did he really say that he was getting a potato chip craving when they found that girl in the mound of salt? Ewww. Said girl was quickly ID’d as a missing high school volleyball player, and the hormones in her blood revealed that she was pregnant. Her mother (Caroline in the City‘s Amy Pietz, who just guest-starred on TNT’s Trust Me — good for her), refused to believe that her good little girl was sexually active, but dad had seen a pregnancy test and guessed as much. The writers toyed briefly with the usual suspects: The ex-boyfriend (only he’s a good Christian); the pregnant ex-best friend, played by Monique Coleman, who also dated the ex-boyfriend (only they would’ve made up); the father (no incest here); the strict mother (she didn’t know the girl was pregnant, she just knew that she’d tried to forge a $5,000 check from her); and the volleyball coach (he reported the girl’s attempt to extort $5,000 from him). I thought maybe it would’ve been the volleyball team’s alpha female, a girl who’d been the class valedictorian and student body president until she got pregnant — but no, she just allowed half her teammates to think it was a great idea for them to get pregnant, too, so they could buy a house together (in this market? good luck!) and raise their babies together.

I’ve never spent much time thinking about what would motivate a teen pregnancy pact — because it’s just so unthinkable to me — so I can’t speak to how unique the show’s theory was. I guess we’re supposed to believe that like the alpha female, the other girls were under so much pressure from their parents to succeed and follow a certain path that they just wanted their roads to end. You can give up dreams and ambitions if they’re not actually yours. As Brennan said, these girls are being raised in a society that tells you half of all marriages end in divorce, you can’t count on a man. You count on your friends; they’ll never leave you. I like that concept (as a plot device, I mean) more than I would the idea that these girls got themselves pregnant just because the most popular girl in school did. Each of the girls had to come up with $5,000, and the victim was killed when she seduced her chiropractor and threatened him with statutory rape if he didn’t give her the money.

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It turns out the same schlubby kid, Clinton, got the alpha female, the victim, her ex-best friend, and a fourth girl pregnant. He’d comforted the alpha one night when her parents overwhelmed her, but he didn’t want to help raise the baby. In other words, he was no Randall Batinkoff in the 1988 Molly Ringwald classic For Keeps. (LOVED that movie.) But that made him the perfect sperm donor for the other girls who didn’t have boyfriends that would put out. It’s unfathomable to me that a 16-year-old in today’s world wouldn’t get that he had fathered four children until Booth pointed it out to him, showing him pictures of the girls, telling him that anyone of them could change her mind and ask him for child support — except for the victim, who was killed along with his son. (I guess it had to be a son to make a kid that would use girls like that care, huh?) Where was this boy’s father? Why wasn’t he the one telling him what defines you as a man? I guess maybe he, like bench-pressing Booth at first, refused to believe that his boy was the “Mac Daddy Baby Daddy.” Regardless, as I said at the start of the recap, it was nice (and sexy) to see Booth get serious for a change. To be commanding, protective, and nurturing at all once. His conversation with Clinton — which made Brennan swoon, if that’s possible — made me think that there’s no way he’d father a baby for Brennan unless he was going to commit to her. I can see her thinking to ask him (if you believe that she’s actually ready to have a baby — which I don’t), but how does she honestly expect him to say yes? Unless maybe she thinks he’s going to die, and she convinces him that another piece of him besides Parker should live on, and that it should be with her because his personality completes hers…

We could ponder that plot twist (and whether Booth’s sudden visits to the vending machine are a symptom of the mystery illness — god, I hope not!), but let’s get back to this episode. Back at the lab, Brennan was breaking in a new assistant, Arastoo, and learning about religious tolerance in the workplace. Loved the classic Brennan defense that she wasn’t prejudice against Muslims — she finds all religions equally irrational. After so many episodes where Brennan was more than happy to be in the field, it was almost weird to see her back in the lab, acting sooo competitive with Cam. It was, however, cool for long-time fans to see Brennan attempt to use one of the “freebies” she negotiated when Cam was first hired. She wanted access to the bones before Cam was ready to part with them. It was also rewarding to see an example of why Cam is actually the boss at the Jeffersonian — she was smart enough to figure out how to rehydrate the body, which made the assistant have to find some way to get an image of the skeleton while the skin was still on it, which revealed some mark on some nerve that the chiropractor would’ve known to strike to cause cardiac arrest. I really didn’t understand half the words that were spoken in the lab last night, but that’s how I like it. Be smarter than me. Please.

Of course, the other big development last night was Hodgins’ upper body. Damn! Roxy broke up with Angela because Angela wasn’t ready to live together even though she wanted them to get a puppy. Okay. So Roxy (not blonde before, right?) gave Angela some line about how Angela lives for the moment, and sadly, this moment has passed. I really thought Hodgins meant it when he said he was taking Angela for coffee, but they ended up in their old Egyptian haunt, in bed, where we saw the shirtless, ripped Hodgins. Obviously, they can’t stay together because Angela doesn’t think about the future — EXCEPT FOR THAT TIME WHEN SHE WAS TOTALLY READY TO MARRY HODGINS. I think this Angela-can’t-commit storyline is kinda bullcrap. She was past these issues before her ex-husband showed up and ruined everything but Cam’s night. But it did yield some nice moments, like Brennan and Angela having what could be their first lunch together, ever, and Angela being horrified that Brennan approves of how she operates her love life. And, my new favorite pairing, Angela opening up to Sweets as they went undercover as a married couple to find the chiropractor’s murder weapon. He told her she needs to give up sex for six months and start to relate to people in a way that’s not carnal. This could be very fun. I’d love to see a sexually-frustrated Angela come on to Booth, or Sweets (what? he looked good in that T-shirt when he was getting his back cracked). Maybe she could just kiss Sweets one night when she’s drunk. That would be enough to make me happy.

So what did you think of last night’s episode? How do you hope the Brennan-wants-a-baby and Booth-has-an-illness storylines will be introduced and play out? Do you want Angela and Hodgins back together now, or would you like to see her accept Sweets’ celibacy challenge? How lame was that “Bones Break”? (This show is known for having awesome blooper reels, but those ones weren’t funny.) Why do you think Brennan is huffing and puffing like a spoiled child in the lab now? And what was your favorite song on the melancholy mix CD empathetic Arastoo made for Angela? (I’m off to find my Mazzy Star album now.)

More Bones:
Ausiello’s latest Bones scoops
David Boreanaz answers reader questions (or has a good time skirting them)

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