Bones 4.08 The Skull In The Sculpture

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ThyneAlone
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Bones 4.08 The Skull In The Sculpture

Post by ThyneAlone »

Darn. Seeing as the UK has now 'caught up' with Bones airings, I was able to see this one once on line and once on Sky during the same evening. So I made notes on it in readiness for this post, and would you believe I can't find them anywhere?!

There was a lot to like in it. OK, Angela's leap back into her former relationship (after so much agonising with Sweets) did scream rebound: but Angela has always come over as flaky and nervy of commitment, so that isn't OOC, despite the fact that she had seemed to settle somewhat with Hodgins. What gets me is that, as Sweets said, she seems to be so unaware of the devastation she leaves in her wake. It says a lot for her warm and impulsive personality that people are prepared to take what she deals out to them. And that business about being completely committed to each of her lovers, about each one being the love of her life - I'm sceptical. If you're completely committed you don't drop someone when something happens that you don't like. You talk it out. More than anything else now, I seriously want Hodgins to get involved with someone else, so that she is no longer in control of his emotional life. I know rather too many people who say 'we should both see other people' when what they actually mean is 'I want to see other people'!

Again I'm finding the murder a bit hard to put together in my head. What was the motive? It wasn't as if there was money or anything, and can someone put me straight on this, I don't think I heard anything about the victim being ill until the murderer said 'He was dying anyway'. I probably missed something important. Interesting idea to put the body into a work of art and so make it legally inaccessible for a bit. Though I feel personally that it wasn't strictly a work of art, because it had only just been crushed; surely some work, some painting, whatever, would have needed to go into it before it became a sculpture?

Anyway, I liked the episode as a whole because it had some resonance from past eps and series. Return to the Angelator! So cool! And a revisiting of the wonderful down-to-earth Caroline, plus another morsel of Angela's past. The timely reminder also of the flesh-eating beetles - that was fun, and wistfully reminiscent of the Zach/Jack days. I'd love to know where they went after stripping the bones, though. I was visualising an insect invasion of the entire lab and scientists leaping about all over the floor crushing the offending minibeasts!

Daisy was about as irritating as she could possibly be, of course, but I did think the dénouement was rather nice. It too showed some continuity, and, thank goodness, finally gave Sweets a wee bit of character. It was, obviously, contrived to portray an incidence of a pure scientist of massive social awkwardness paired off with a more emotional type, but it felt rather more natural than some of the other 'parallels' Brennan and Booth have been subjected to.

At the moment Hodgins and Cam are being significantly underused and spending rather a lot of time together. Hmm. I don't think I'd like that particular coupling, so I hope that's not where we're leading. They had better give TJ some meat soon. Everyone has got some backstory but him at the moment!!
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Re: Bones 4.08 The Skull In The Sculpture

Post by skftex »

I have to say, my favorite part of this one...Hodgins in response to Caroline saying that it was art.."This? Its a hard car shell with a gooey corpse center." That just cracked me up, and everytime I think of it, it makes me laugh. Laughing now. I guess I'm a bit morbid. :)

Hodgins with the jaws of life, I liked that too. But it did make me miss Zack being right there with him.

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Re: Bones 4.08 The Skull In The Sculpture

Post by Jude40 »

I've seen this episode twice too, the joy of Sky +. I have considered a third viewing but think I might get evicted from the house!
It was definitely a favourite for this series. I'm not positive that I've got this right but I think the motive was that the 'sculptures' would increase in value after the artists death thereby allowing the murderer to get the money she needed for the experimental cancer treatment. I think when it refers to the artist dying anyway it is refering to his mental health problems which have caused him to threaten suicide.
I know she's annoying but I actually quite like Daisy although I would probably want to kill her if I actually had to work with her. She actually has quite a lot of Brennan in her in that they have both been looking for a family and acceptance and they are both really clueless socially.
I agree that Hodgins should have more involvement in the plotlines. It looks as though there is some involvement in the next 'Gravedigger' episode although the impression I get is its Brennan blaming him for what happens. It would be good if he could have some romantic interest if only to see how Angela would behave if the situation was reversed.
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Re: Bones 4.08 The Skull In The Sculpture

Post by ThyneAlone »

Ooh, random remembered giggle: Daisy does a not unconvincing Yoda impression and Cam looks at her and says youth doesn't excuse everything!!
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Re: Bones 4.08 The Skull In The Sculpture

Post by begolden »

Oh my. It took me this long to be able to respond to this episode. Steph, I'd like to see Angela from your point of view and believe that there's hope, but right now I hate what the writers are doing with her. However, I did enjoy seeing so much Hodgins in the lab--and with the jaws of life... oooh, what a sexy guy!
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Re: Bones 4.08 The Skull In The Sculpture

Post by Sinkwriter72 »

Rebecca, I'm just so HAPPY to see your face and read your words in this forum at all! I've missed you! Great to hear your thoughts, always.

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Re: Bones 4.08 The Skull In The Sculpture

Post by ThyneAlone »

Hey, found my notes. Remembered most of them when I first posted, I see. I did fail to mention one or two of the 'echoes' from previous seasons though, and one I did like was Brennan sticking the skull back together - pretty iconic.

But I inevitably forgot a couple of the quotes I liked round Hodgins' Jaws of Death (which I am so not going to call a very large tool), so here they are.

"23 pounds psi of raw primal power. Not displaced sexual frustration."
And of course: "Stand back, ladies, this is about to become mediaeval."

"Don't scratch the crushed automobile which encases a rotting dead body" was a good one too, I think already mentioned.

And I noted that I would really like Tamara's considerable acting talents deployed on something other than gurning at other people's witticisms and aiming her own shafts of wit.

That's the lot I think.

Oh yeah - and since when, Angela, is the notion that love isn't real unless it's permanent 'bourgeois'??
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Re: Bones 4.08 The Skull In The Sculpture

Post by Sinkwriter72 »

I wanted to comment on this one, but I'm afraid I haven't seen the entire episode (which is why I have remained silent on this thread). I saw most parts of it, but that day was one of my grandmother's weekly senior trips so I was distracted, as I kept watching the clock to make sure I left at an appropriate interval to pick her up (she doesn't drive), and I didn't tape this one so I couldn't go back and watch it more thoroughly.

Which is funny because the week this episode aired was the week I ended up having a very long conversation with someone over on 206_bones (on LiveJournal) about the overall show and this episode and some things that I wish for the program. *looking over at that site for my initial comments about the actual episode*

First off, holy crap. Did any of you recognize Vicki Lewis from News Radio? She played the murderer, Helen Bridenbecker (the art dealer lady). I knew her face and voice seemed slightly familiar but I didn't realize it at first because she had all that white face makeup on and that black wig (instead of her usual vibrant red hair). Hilarious. It took me the entire episode to figure that out.

I liked seeing a momentary connection to the victim. I feel like it's been a while since the main characters have cared about (or even paid attention to) the victim, which may not always be necessary but does affect the emotional impact of the program. I could name so many episodes from the earlier seasons because of what happened to the victim and how that ended up affecting or resonating with Booth, Brennan and/or one of the Squints in some way. In contrast, more often lately the victims have been treated as if they deserved to end up head-first in an outhouse toilet, or as if their deaths are supposed to be humorous, or they're ignored as if they aren't really part of the equation of the episode at all, which in a way disconnects us as viewers from the story. Brennan, Booth, & the Squints have diligently done their work, they've discussed the cases, they even crack jokes about such disgusting fates, but this episode felt like the first time in a while I actually heard one of the characters express a kind, connected emotion about the victim: when Booth watched the Angelator show what probably happened to the victim, he grimaced at the sight of the body being crushed, and said respectfully -- I'm paraphrasing because I can't remember the exact words -- "I hope he wasn't alive at that point, so he didn't have to experience that." I really appreciated that.

I'm not saying that every episode has to have some "BIG DRAMATIC POINT" about the victim's life, because that too would become over-the-top and unnecessary, as well as taking away from the emotional impact of the singular episodes where one of the Bones characters does feel something intense about a particular case or victim.

I'm just saying, I noticed that the writers hadn't really brought up anything or shown any sort of care whatsoever, in a long while. Not that the care needs to be the focus of the episode, but just that the characters even notice what they're working on, that it's important, that it was someone's loved one, or that the victim suffered horribly and unnecessarily. Like with this week's episode... Booth made an emotional impact on me with that one line. That's all it took. I didn't need him to become obsessed about the poor guy getting crushed in the sculpture; all it took for me to feel emotionally connected to the victim and to Booth for recognizing what the victim had gone through was one simple line.

Let's see, what else?

I loved seeing the Angelator again. Welcome back, old friend. :lol: Great to see Angela's art interests revive, as well -- her character really comes alive when she's talking about something she loves.

I liked Hodgins' scenes (but really, when don't I like Hodgins?) :D and especially the continued return to his snarky side. He has some prime funny lines throughout (some Steph has already illuminated; thanks Steph!).

And I really do appreciate the return to the friendship that Angela has with Booth. That was something I loved about Season 1, that these two characters -- who seemed like they really understood each other's personalities -- would become friends and get along in a way completely different from Booth and Brennan.

On a different note, while I greatly appreciate Booth's 'enlightened' attitude about Angela's former relationship, I wasn't necessarily buying the whole 'I had an aunt...' story. It was nice, on the whole, I suppose, but I thought the writers could have gotten more in-depth. *shrugs* Maybe they will in the future, if they bring Roxy back for more than one episode. I don't know what it was; it just seemed a little convenient for him to be so at peace about it. Especially when his character is such a strict Catholic (or tries to be). I'd think he'd have more conflicted feelings about the whole topic (or at least express former conflicted feelings about it). I think he'd try to understand, out of respect for Angela, but I really do think he'd be more conflicted, because of his religion.

Frankly, I'm surprised the writers didn't even try to use that (not to mention his military background; let's face it, the military's a group of people which historically has not spoken out or behaved kindly about homosexuality). It seemed a logical, natural reason to bring up his religion. There have been many times where they've used his religion as a way to create an annoying running joke between him and Brennan (how she always manages to make some overly literal comment and he gets frustrated), but... this was actually one occasion where I would have been greatly interested to know how his faith in Catholicism might (or surprisingly, might not) influence how he feels about homosexuality.

It was an immediate gut reaction when I watched that scene -- I reflected upon what we've seen of Booth and what we've heard him say on the show previously. He tries to follow his Catholic faith as strictly as possible, and when he isn't able to, I think we see the guilt underneath that he feels, whether it's from his heavy-duty sniper past, or getting Rebecca pregnant but never marrying her (though it was because she didn't want to, right?). He's done things to 'right' those 'wrongs,' he's tried to catch as many bad guys as possible, he's tried to be the best father he can be, but still, those issues stick with him. I'm not saying Booth isn't the type of guy who could be okay with a person being gay, especially someone he cares about, like Angela. Nor am I saying that he'd be insulting or hate-filled about it (that's not Booth). I'm just saying I'm surprised we didn't see him being more conflicted or confused about it. Or maybe a better word might be 'uncertain'? Ultimately, he cares about Angela, and that's the bottom line, and I'm very glad for that, but I was simply surprised that the writers didn't choose to show a little bit more conflict in him about it. He even said something to Angela about it, how his family 'whispered' about his aunt's relationship, he 'heard' things, which seems to indicate right there that it was not something to be talked about within his family. Like there was a bit of family shame there. That could be due to general uncomfortableness about an unknown subject, it could be because of the time period during which he was a kid, but it also could be because of religious beliefs. All I'm saying is that it could have been interesting, character-development-wise, if they'd addressed Booth's own personal feelings a little bit deeper in the scene. Just a bit.

Regardless, it was a good scene between the two of them, that conversation they shared in the car.

Apparently I missed another good scene in which he defended Angela during an arrest of a suspect, so that one I can't comment on. You'll have to tell me what happened!

Okay... some frustrations with this episode.

Let me preface this first comment. One thing I really liked about the S3 'pottery date' episode was that we got to see another side of Sweets, a genuine side, not a for-the-sake-of-a-laugh side. In those final scenes after his girlfriend broke up with him, I felt like it was the first time they treated him like an actual person, rather than as a punch line for a scene. But then they went right back to treating him as a joke again, so I've been frustrated with that. Here in this episode, I'm very glad he found someone new to date; I do like that. However, I still don't like the writers' choice of who he's dating, because again, it seems like they're going for the joke, rather than dealing with him as a real character. Like, oh ha ha, isn't it funny, he annoys everyone at the Jeffersonian, now he's dating someone else who annoys everyone at the Jeffersonian. "Aren't they the perfect pair?" It's just not right to do that to his character.

Which is also why I'm so frustrated with the fact that they can't seem to give him one job and let him stick to that and do it well. Everyone else on the show has their own niche: Angela's a talented artist and a kind-hearted soul; Brennan and Hodgins are geniuses who each have their specialties and remarkable personalities; Booth has wonderful gut instincts as an FBI agent and he's a guy who's passionate about being a father and about serving his country and doing what he thinks is right. So why do they have Sweets all over the place? First, he worked for the FBI, he was a psychologist and counselor, then he was doing a study, then he was a criminal profiler expert, then he was hovering in the lab all the time (why?), then he was somehow 'helping' the Jeffersonian team, then he said repeatedly that he shouldn't be their therapist because 'we work together' (doing what, exactly?) but here he is counseling each one of them anyway (professionally and personally, a line which most therapists try very hard not to cross), and now they've got him telling Booth how to interrogate people (a type of assistance I think we can all agree Booth doesn't really need -- he's great at questioning suspects; that's well-established).

It's like the writers don't know what to do with Sweets, or they want to use him for every purpose, which is ludicrous. It's like they never really fully established him as a character in his own right, so they simply put him wherever they need in order to make their points. That is frustrating to me because it's not good writing that way. It's like a big anvil coming down upon my head, having Sweets telling me week after week what's wrong with this character or that character, or why Booth and Brennan need to be together.

As well, Sweets should not be 'talking' to Daisy for Cam! He does not work for the Jeffersonian. He's not in a position where it would be okay for him to do that. I wish the writers would remember that. I wish they'd give him a single role and let him actually do it (and do it well), rather than giving him everyone else's tasks.

In more detail:

1) Booth is not an idiot; he's an excellent reader of human behavior -- in fact, it's one of the things Brennan learns from Booth. She's the science genius, but he's the one who's good at reading people and knowing when they're lying. He doesn't need Sweets to oversee his interrogations. It's ridiculous and insulting. Why are they giving away one of Booth's specialties? The only saving grace in this episode's interrogation scene was that Booth didn't listen to Sweets.

2) Brennan has always been the one who talks with Angela about life stuff. Where's their bonding? We rarely see that anymore. I really like the thought of Angela finally starting to see patterns and fear of commitment in her behavior, I'd love for her to dig into that, but once again, they're using Sweets to tell the audience what we should be seeing about all the characters. Why can't Angela figure this stuff out on her own? Or, through conversations with people she actually trusts? Or, you know, if she's going to actually seek therapy (which, out of all the Bones characters, I do think she should), why have her discussing such things in a restaurant? She may be more comfortable in that environment, but a bar-n-grill is a buddy kind of place to talk, and Sweets is not her buddy.

I will say that I was glad to see that one Brennan and Angela scene together. That was a welcome moment. As well, I like how Brennan questioned Angela about what she actually means: "Is this one of those times where you say you're feeling one thing but actually mean the opposite?" That was a Brennan 'I don't know what that means' moment that didn't feel contrived. And in the scene with Sweets, where he takes her to task for her repeated behaviors, I liked the look on Angela's face in that moment -- it's like she's hearing what he's saying but she's uncomfortable with it and doesn't really want to listen but at the same time deep down she is listening and taking to heart all that he's saying, but in the end is still afraid and protesting. I think she heard what he said, but at the same time isn't quite ready to face all of what that means. I thought Michaela played that very well. No matter what, if the writers carry through with the story rather than treating it like a sexy joke, it could be a very interesting exploration of Angela's character, because whether she's gay, straight, or bisexual, what she is a prime example of is someone who is messed up when it comes to emotional relationships and commitment. I just don't want the writers to waste this opportunity.

Back to my frustration...

3) Cam is an intelligent, capable boss who has shown many times that she's not afraid to fire anyone. Hell, she almost fired Hodgins. And Brennan, once upon a time -- the only reason she didn't fire her was probably out of respect for Booth's opinion. Cam's a badass. Of all people, why have her running to Sweets for 'advice' on how to get rid of an employee? It's ludicrous. Soft underbelly or not, Cam's a ball-buster. Why are they weakening her character?

On a very separate side note, I'm a little bummed that the writers went with the 'tantalizing' choice of Angela as the bisexual character. It seems a big stereotype, not to mention the easy writing choice. Oh, she's an artist, she's a 'free spirit' -- of course Angela's the bisexual one. :roll: It feels like they're using it simply for the allure of it (whoo-hoo, two women are going to kiss on TV!), rather than as part of an actual, planned, well-developed, meaningful storyline.

Case in point: in this week's episode (Con Man in the Meth Lab), they only used Angela's new romance as a quick joke line said by Booth, rather than showing a commitment to developing it further as a story in its own right.

I was chatting about it with a friend of mine, and he said what really would have been the gutsy choice on the part of the writers is if they'd chosen Hodgins or Booth as a bisexual character. Personally, Hodgins seems like he's a fairly open-minded person, sexually-speaking; I could see that as a possibility. Booth... well, now, that would be ballsy! Imagine the character inner conflicts that would stir up upon that realization! (Sadly, that will never happen on this show. Though I think I would see David Boreanaz in a whole new light as an actor, were he to step out of his box and try playing such a character.)

Anyway, my thoughts on this episode. I'll stop rambling now. Your turn! :mrgreen:
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Re: Bones 4.08 The Skull In The Sculpture

Post by English Al »

TJ was the best thing about this episode. To be perfectly honest I'd like him to get his own show and for them to cancel Bones now. I haven't been impressed with it at all.

I thought we were getting back to the brilliance of Bones, but this episode just didn't cut it. Its as though they have written all they wanted to and now they're struggling for humourless ways to kill people. Why cant we have a simple skeleton found in the basement of an old factory blah blah blah and not have the need for rare diseases, "only one place in blah blah has it, scenarios which can only mean one person did it.

On a side note I thought Angela had only "kissed" a girl called Roxy in college? Not had a whole year spent with her? Maybe I'm wrong.

I wonder how long it will be before they have to come up with some weird or unbelieveable background story for Hodgins. They'll be making him rich next!
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Re: Bones 4.08 The Skull In The Sculpture

Post by Ellen »

I think we should have more of a background story about him. It'd be good to know all that sort of stuff about him, like what we know about Brennan and her childhood etc. :D
That'd be cool!
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