Bones 4.14 Hero in the Hold

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Sinkwriter72
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Bones 4.14 Hero in the Hold

Post by Sinkwriter72 »

SPOILER ALERT: IF YOU DO NOT WANT TO KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT THIS EPISODE AHEAD OF TIME, DO NOT READ THIS THREAD ANY FURTHER. THIS EPISODE IS SET TO AIR TOMORROW NIGHT, THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 5.
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Okay, I know I've been pretty vocal about my frustrations with some of the inconsistencies with this season's writing, but I have to say this. I've been VERY excited for this episode. Last week I thought it was supposed to air, only to find out that it was set for this week instead... I can't begin to tell you how bummed I was; it felt like I'd been gearing up for this episode all day last Thursday. It's been a while since I've been that hyper.

But here we are at last. :dance:

Tomorrow's the big day. The commercials look intense and exciting. And I've been looking forward to this since season 2. All I can say is: I hope this 'sequel' can come even relatively close to what the original episode means to me (and to all of us, I imagine). And I hope TJ has a hell of a role in it because it should be (partially) about his character's experience, and because I bet he'll be overwhelmingly fantastic (as he was in the original ep).

I'm not going to watch "Aliens in a Spaceship" anywhere near this episode, because I want to watch "Hero in the Hold" with fresh eyes and an open mind. I don't want to do any comparisons, especially because there is no comparison to "Aliens in a Spaceship" -- that episode was a piece of art, it was so amazingly powerful. Therefore, I acknowledge there is no way to recreate that magic. "Hero in the Hold" deserves the chance to be presented in its own esteem.

Still... you know I'll have opinions. :shifty: ;)

I'm so ready for this episode! I can't wait to see what TJ (and the rest of the cast) gets to do!

Tomorrow night won't come fast enough for me. I'm so curious for this episode. Hurry up, FOX! :D
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Jude40
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Re: Bones 4.14 Hero in the Hold

Post by Jude40 »

I can't wait to see this one either, just been having a look at the previews and was very impressed, looks like there's major tension between Brennan and Hodgins. Can't wait 'til Friday when I can watch it on line.

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Re: Bones 4.14 Hero in the Hold

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Me too! Me too!
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Re: Bones 4.14 Hero in the Hold

Post by skftex »

So...can't wait to read what you all thought about this one. I knew who they were going to say was the gravedigger the minute the person appeared. Anyone feel like they didn't tie it up quite enough??-with Hodgins-do they still blame him?? how do they deal with Brennan not trusting him?? Jared was in cuffs but what happens to the whole team-they still were doing illegal things and the end (saving Booth) does not make that okay, with WHY this person did these things?? Other than that one line that Sweets gives us about the gravediggers personality??? Maybe they plan on telling all that in another episode. I don't know.

I think I'm going to have to find time to watch it again in order to say much more. Oh, I haven't checked yet but that wasn't the same Vega was it?? He got a lot younger looking if it was!

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Re: Bones 4.14 Hero in the Hold

Post by Jude40 »

Hi All

Ok before I say what I've got to say about this one, I'd like to point out that I am a massive fan of Bones and have never not liked an episode, I just like them to different degrees.

After the last couple of episodes which I get the impression I've liked more than some of you, I'm gonna shock you now, I was a bit disappointed by this one. Maybe its because I expected a lot but it kinda felt like a bit of an anti climax.

The whole thing felt a bit rushed with no real meat on the bones (so to speak). I know I've said in the past that Im not too bothered about inconsistencies in the story so long as I'm entertained but its a bit different with a 'dramatic' episode so a couple of questions.

Did anyone actually notice when a whole bunch of attendees, including the tributee (if there is such a word) didn't turn up for a tribute event?

Why was Sweets chased away one minute then right there in the thick of the action the next?

Is Agent Perotta really as stupid as the writers made her out to be in this one?

Has there ever been a more two dimensional baddie, I can be more scary and sinister than that SERIOUSLY!

Has there ever been a less dramatic ending kinda ok I'm off the boat now, give me a hug, oh look the boat's just blown up.

I'm making it sound like I hated it, I didn't, just a bit disappointed that's all, just two more observations.

I don't know if anyone else feels this but its kinda getting more like the David Boreanaz show, he again seemed to get the majority of the best scenes/dialogue. Don't get me wrong I like Mr B but one person does not make a show.

Lastly a positive HURRAH! I liked Teddy Parker although I'm guessing as he's dead he want be making a return visit (although Randall and Hopkirk deceased anyone?). I did get slightly distracted though as that is Alex's dad's name so I kept picturing him, didn't really work.

Anyway, in summary liked not loved this one.

Catch you later

Jude x
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skftex
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Re: Bones 4.14 Hero in the Hold

Post by skftex »

I have to admit I was wondering about Sweets as well. Thought of it last night after I had posted, thought I'd mention it this morning-so yes, I wondered that. Why was he there when they gave the evidence back? Anyone else think that the way Hodgins was about the gravedigger, even knowing that was gonna blow up he would have grabbed that vial before he ran???

I liked Teddy Parker too. Though apparently Booth when unconscious/drugged likes to conjure up people. I think it wouldn't have seemed so AGAIN like if we hadn't just had the hockey episode prior to this one. Hallucinations/ghosts are their new tool I guess. But honestly, despite that, I did like that part of the episode. I thought all the Booth in the ship stuff was good. Not too sold on Brennan seeing him at the cemetery but I know that was so we could have our cute ending. They like cute endings.

Agent Perotta...I have a feeling this is another character they are going to continue to use, and I'm not sure she is necessary. Like Sweets. The show keeps adding characters and we get less and less of the team. :(
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Re: Bones 4.14 Hero in the Hold

Post by skftex »

Just wanted to to come back and say to Sherry, did notice the actress with the West Wing connection? The Supremes, Eppur Si Muove?
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Re: Bones 4.14 Hero in the Hold

Post by Sinkwriter72 »

I knew she looked familiar! :D I just couldn't place why. It's been a long time since I've watched those two episodes (or that season, for that matter) -- I really love William Fichtner in The Supremes; he was awesome. :mrgreen:

You're good, Sharon. :clap: (Heee.)
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Re: Bones 4.14 Hero in the Hold

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Well you know I do LOVE my West Wing. I will admit I knew she was in The Supremes as soon as I saw her but had to look up the name of the second one, though I knew she was in more than one episode. The Supremes is one of my favorite episodes ever. Glenn Close and William Fichtner were fabulous. Plus lots of Bradley Whitford in that one so I was haaaaaapppppppy. He got the idea from Donna's parents cats. HEE.

Ok..back on topic... I'm waiting semi-patiently to hear your thoughts on this episode Sherry! I know how you felt prior to the show airing so wondering if you felt the way I did about it.
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Re: Bones 4.14 Hero in the Hold

Post by ThyneAlone »

Well, obviously I have only seen it the once and not exactly in brilliant clarity, but I do have to say that, despite its faults, I liked this one.

The faults have been pretty much enumerated, though, I note, not in a pessimistic or over-critical way. There was too much DB, yes, there was, and if they were going to do the supernatural thing here they should have held off it in Fire In The Ice. The relationship between the soldiers did come off well, however, with Teddy particularly convincing and Booth's back story very welcome (though again, where are the back stories for the others?).

My worry, as you intelligent commentators have noted, is the superficiality of it. We had a psychologist there, for goodness' sake, and someone investigating the woman's profile; why did we not find out her history and reasons for putting people through all this? After all, there are more straightforward ways of getting a ransom. You don't have to inter your victims. Also, I would have liked to know (and have wanted to ever since I saw Aliens In A Spaceship) how this individual managed to manoeuvre drugged bodies out of windows, into cars and onto ships - and bury a car in the desert with people trapped in it - in such a very short time? Even with Vega helping her, it would have been nigh-impossible. Talking of which, after such a long period, might Vega not have changed his incriminating vehicle, and would Brennan and Hodgins really have had the good fortune simply to walk in and spot the link (though kudos to the writers for an excellent car park visual flashback to the original - you sensed danger as soon as they entered, remembering)? And the evidence was pretty paltry for them to pick up the exact location, I thought.

On the other hand, the emotional side of it and the character rapport were amazingly portrayed. Recalling what this site is all about; give TJ something to get his teeth into and he does a fantastic job. The others rose to a better script than has been in evidence of late, too. This one was all about conflict and relationships, what we are prepared to sacrifice for them and why we need closure, and it is when it deals with these universal experiences that Bones is at its best. I'd have liked to have seen more of the mental struggle that finally brought the essentially cowardly Jared to risk his job for his brother and end up in handcuffs (how on earth, even with the sway he holds, did Jared get a body out of FBI custody?). However, Brennan's soul was bared for all to see, and it was interesting that she was on the emotional side rather than the voice of reason this time. The best issue dealt with was the Brennan/Hodgins standoff, as each pitched in with his/her own particular obsession. It contrasted so sharply with what we saw when they were trapped in the car together. Then, the trust was moving and palpable, seemingly unassailable. Like Hodgins' and Angela's. But here, as in 'Man In The Mansion', Hodgins' obsessive nature goes that little bit too far and he actually endangers others legally and physically. There is an almost worrying pure light burning through him that this monster must be caught at any cost, a personal vendetta (he is so focused on his own experience that he almost eliminates Brennan from the equation until she sharply reminds him that she was there too. And, unspoken, that Booth, with the team, saved them).

Surprising, then, and a tribute to a friendship that will never be quite the same, that Bones is able to grant him those 8 hours, because she knows how good he is; but not surprising that she says she no longer has any trust in him. Which Hodgins accepts, with some subtly-portrayed mental anguish that was beautifully done. What on earth has made this man so frighteningly obsessive and single-minded, in his pursuit of truth (in that way, he is very like Brennan, but they have been altered in different directions by their experiences - Booth has changed Bones hugely, hasn't he?), of the Gravedigger, of Angela? History, someone, please!!

It's good to see someone giving these relationships some depth and development. Is this going to set Jack apart from the others? Despite his faith in his team being proved correct? Will he ever regain that grudging mutual respect with Booth or real common ground with the impulsive Angela, supporting her friend?

Booth's experience was a little simpler. Basically, what he went through was a traditional ordeal by fire and water to purge his guilt, purify him and make him worthy in his own eyes, with a loved one at his shoulder to support and assist. Very Magic Flute, for those with operatic interests! And of course the scene at the graveside was also very redolent of countless previous eps. Though Parker's appearance at the end was just that bit mawkish - Cold Case, anyone?

Yes, I had my doubts, but overall there were some good signs here. Fingers crossed.
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Re: Bones 4.14 Hero in the Hold

Post by Callieach »

Fun fact: this is the first episode of Bones I've actually watched at the time of airing since the third season premiere. My first thought, when it came on, was, "do I really want to get frustrated at this show?". My second, when the topic was established, was "Now who am I going to discuss this with online?" Turns out it's my fellow TJ fans.

I am one of those fans who's been wanting closure on the Gravedigger case since Aliens in a Spaceship aired. I knew that bringing up the case again would be a PHENOMENAL opportunity for us to marvel in the wide-ranging emotions TJ inserts into his character. Sure, the potential was there, but Hodgins was barely in this episode! Aside from his little screen time, Hodgins was portrayed in a negative light in every scene. Once again, the team - and the writers, most importantly - have ignored the fact that, yes, this is a character that sometimes does stupid things (stealing evidence, really, Jack?) but he more often than not redeems himself by solving the case. Brennan would have never found that boat if it weren't for Hodgins. Hence, Booth would be dead if it weren't for Hodgins. And, of course, this is a fact that will never be brought up because the writers of the show favour focusing solely on Booth and Brennan. This isn't to say that a character in a negative position cannot be well acted. We know better than that. But I'm upset that the writers chose to focus on Hodgins' singlemindedness, instead of the very sensitive side we all know and love.

ThyneAlone, I'm glad I'm not the only one who thought about Cold Case at the end of the episode. The entire Parker plot felt like a very cliched deus ex machina to me. This is, unfortunately, a point I adore in theatre but hate in crime fiction.

All in all, for an episode I've wanted for so long, I was sort of let down.
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Re: Bones 4.14 Hero in the Hold

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Callieach wrote: Sure, the potential was there, but Hodgins was barely in this episode! Aside from his little screen time, Hodgins was portrayed in a negative light in every scene.
I felt that TJ got more time than usual to have a go at this one, Callie. Over recent eps he has been shamefully neglected. At least they couldn't avoid giving him a modicum input on this one, albeit grudgingly. I didn't feel that he was portrayed negatively, though opposition to Brennan's character is always a dangerous place to be. But I did feel that his singlemindedness was underlined for plot's sake. It would have been revealing just to have a shot of Jack on his own for a while, showing when the doubts invade. No-one on the team has been shown as a fully-rounded individual since S2 in my view. And Jack has a wonderful sensitive side, it's true. But here's a thought - would he not be keeping it carefully under wraps after being wounded again by Angela? Wouldn't the abrasive side be more to the fore?
Callieach wrote:Booth would be dead if it weren't for Hodgins. And, of course, this is a fact that will never be brought up because the writers of the show favour focusing solely on Booth and Brennan.
I know. It's so frustrating, because looking out at the world around them and the people they are close to would build the relationship up less artificially and teach us more about their 'family'.
Callieach wrote:The entire Parker plot felt like a very cliched deus ex machina to me. This is, unfortunately, a point I adore in theatre but hate in crime fiction.
Hmm, well I don't like the deus ex machina at all, I have to confess. Something that happens suspiciously felicitously to facilitate a necessary epiphany or bring a plotline to a rapid conclusion just irritates me!
It looks as though we have all had mixed feelings on this one and it's excellent reading others' takes on it. This is a great place to discuss!
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Re: Bones 4.14 Hero in the Hold

Post by Jude40 »

Hi all

Ok, I've just watched the episode again and I have to admit I enjoyed it more second time around. I think I missed a few bits last time in my over eagerness to watch 'cos I've been looking forward to this episode for a while.

I don't actually think that Hodgins was portrayed that negatively, I can kinda understand someone being obsessed with catching someone who had buried them alive and it did show him to be really regretful that his actions had possibly caused Booth to be killed. I thought TJ expressed this regret really well and watching again I actually thought all the characters came out of it better than I originally thought, I especially liked the way Emily Deschanel portrayed Brennans conflict between logic and emotion going with the heart rather than the head for once.

I still don't think the episode was perfect but I do think I was way too harsh first time around. One thing I did notice though, Booth was supposed to go to Arlington the day after being trapped on the boat to meet Clare so I assume that is the date he went and apparently he'd been to hospital for treatment and written and submitted his report in the meantime, plus apparently told Brennan about the whole buckle thing, oh and she'd been out and bought him a new one, they'd both been pretty busy people unless I missed something.

Anyway I've actually gone from like closer to love on this one, and yes I can see the similarity to Cold Case endings but as I quite like Cold Case I don't have a problem with the odd nod to it.

Catch you later

Jude x
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Re: Bones 4.14 Hero in the Hold

Post by Callieach »

ThyneAlone wrote: I felt that TJ got more time than usual to have a go at this one, Callie. Over recent eps he has been shamefully neglected. [...] No-one on the team has been shown as a fully-rounded individual since S2 in my view. And Jack has a wonderful sensitive side, it's true. But here's a thought - would he not be keeping it carefully under wraps after being wounded again by Angela? Wouldn't the abrasive side be more to the fore?

Very nice thoughts here. I suppose I'm still used to the season 1 and 2 characters, when the team got equal time, et cetera. My issue with Jack's portrayal in this episode takes into consideration the damage Angela did to him. But there is a difference between keeping your emotions under wrap and one emotion not rising even under the most stressful of circumstances. Notice that his other traits came to the surface: sarcastic cynicism, disestablitarianism, conspriacism, blantantly not giving a damn. And yet no vulnerability? It's not realistic to think that a person could change that drastically within the approximate timeline the audience assumes.

I'm not out-and-out disagreeing with you on this point, I'm just saying I wish we could've seen what we know.

I 100% agree, however, that deus ex machina makes a great discussion point. Art is so controversial.
Jude40 wrote: I especially liked the way Emily Deschanel portrayed Brennans conflict between logic and emotion going with the heart rather than the head for once.
This is a point I wasn't going to mention, but since you did, I'll concur. :P I came into the series through Kathy Reich's novels and was initially appalled at the character that shared Tempe Brennan's name. But the more Emily amazes me with subtlies, the more I care for TV-Brennan. This episode was definitely example at the way she straddles those fine lines between feelings and thoughts.
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Re: Bones 4.14 Hero in the Hold

Post by Sinkwriter72 »

Hang on to your hats, people. This post may break the computer. :oops: *sheepish grin*

Okay, I admit it… I needed a pep talk before posting for this one. (Thank you, Steph. *hugs you*) Mainly because I have many thoughts about this episode (surprise, surprise), and not all of them positive. However, I’m part of the problem.

As I sat down to watch this week’s show, this was a bit of what was tumbling around in my mind: this episode is, in a way, a sequel for the Gravedigger storyline from Season 2, which means there are many different ways to return to that material, many different angles of approach; the original episode “Aliens in a Spaceship” was so overwhelmingly magnificent, it’s tough for any episode to even get close to that artistry; and while there are many Bones episodes that I love, I always come back to “Aliens in a Spaceship” as my ultimate favorite. That makes the Gravedigger storyline personal for me, and I suppose my astronomical expectations make it a great challenge to see the sequel with completely clear eyes and open mind.

That doesn’t mean I can’t make some valid observations, though. :D

Before I get to my own thoughts on the episode at hand, I just want to say to Jude: You have no reason to apologize for your opinions. We like having good discussions here, and I’m very glad that though you may have felt apprehensive, ultimately you felt comfortable enough to express your thoughts. I applaud you for that. And for what it’s worth, I agreed with you. I thought you raised some excellent questions -- particularly about the plot inconsistencies, like Sweets moving back into the story even after Cam kicked him out, and how it somehow goes unnoticed that the guest of honor at an important event doesn’t show up -- and I think you expressed yourself thoughtfully, not negatively. Furthermore, I’m not surprised you felt a bit disappointed. Like you said, this is a completely different occasion than watching a mostly comedic episode in which the main goal may be to laugh and be entertained, regardless of inconsistencies. Not only is this episode a dramatic one, it’s a follow-up to one of the best episodes of the entire series. Therefore, I think we all go in wanting to see something specific. I also think we all want to be as blown away as we were the first time.

At any rate, for better or for worse, my thoughts on "Hero in the Hold":

The original episode “Aliens in a Spaceship” managed to tie everything together beautifully, puzzle pieces fitting into place, each character’s position within the overall story structure given the right amount of attention, flowing and resolving just right, especially emotionally. In that episode, each person played his or her part in the rescue of Hodgins and Brennan (including Hodgins and Brennan), which demonstrated rich themes of teamwork, family, faith in -- and care for -- one another, and an intense unwillingness to give up.

With “Hero in the Hold,” it seemed there was too much going on and most of it wasn’t dealt with subtly or with good resolution. There were FBI evidence theft issues (which were not wrapped up properly, nor hinted at as though it might be resolved at a later date); Booth’s brother’s involvement and subsequent legal troubles (again, not returned to or resolved); the whole ghost story angle; plus trying to cover the Gravedigger, Vega, Booth, Brennan, and the Squints’ parts within the episode’s storyline… it all seemed to go too quickly and tried to cover too much.

I found myself thinking, what is the goal of the episode? Is it supposed to be a ghost story? A tense thriller? A wrap-up of a previous case? An emotional exploration of what the original incident did to each team member? Or… ? The writing seemed unfocused. There were moments, glimmers of potential, but it seemed like they pulled back from their own ideas rather than choosing to delve deeply. Instead, they went with ideas that didn’t quite fit with the Gravedigger plot.

First of all, I did like the story about Booth and his former Ranger buddy. It was an interesting way to touch on Booth’s past as a sniper, and I liked getting that further glimpse into his history. However, I think that angle would have been better suited as its own ghost story episode. I’m not sure it fit well as part of the Gravedigger story arc.

I think I would have liked it better if we hadn’t seen Teddy the entire time. Having Booth talk to the guy and get help from the guy throughout the entire episode didn’t really make me feel as if Booth were in any sort of real trouble. It took some of the focus off of Booth and put it on this stranger (whom we had to focus on because we didn’t know his story or how he related to Booth). It might have had more urgency and intensity if we’d seen Booth having to do all this stuff by himself, all alone. It also would have been really eerie and scary for us as viewers if we’d had at least one scene where Teddy wasn’t there, and instead we saw Booth alone, working, talking to himself as if Teddy were there, as Booth tried to get something open or pry something loose or get free from his confined space. We might have then worried more about the state of his physical and mental well being, clinging to every moment, wondering if he was going to be all right. It might have given us the sense that Teddy was a figment of Booth’s unconscious mind after being drugged and electrocuted, perhaps as he suffered from lack of oxygen, or that maybe he was Booth’s way of mentally getting through his ordeal, to stay focused, to find things in his surroundings that might assist him in getting free. Perhaps Teddy would have been a symbol and reminder of a time in Booth’s life when he had tried with everything in him to save someone and get through the danger with sheer will. He didn’t succeed that time; this time he would be determined to have a different outcome.

After all, he didn’t have Hodgins or Brennan there, no one to figure out where he was or what surrounded him, not like Hodgins with the dirt and Brennan with the rigging of the explosives in the dashboard (during the original episode), so it would have been cool if the show had allowed us to see how resourceful Booth can be on his own. It took some of the power out of it, having Teddy there the whole time, giving him the answers. It didn’t allow us to see Booth do what he does best. Instead, it was as if someone else was helping him, making it seem fairly easy. In the end, Brennan told Booth (and us as viewers) that it would have taken at least two people to do some of the things Booth accomplished, but those are just words -- I’d rather get to see it happen. We did, in a way, but I feel like it was partially sanitized by having Teddy there the whole time. Having him there diffused some of the great tension and terror that could have arisen from watching Booth having to do it all on his own. We could have felt more desperation for him, with each passing scene as the time counted down. And perhaps we would have seen more desperation coming from him, as he tried to figure out what to do. Again, we saw some, but not as much as I think we would have if Teddy hadn’t been there, holding his hand the whole way.

On another note, one of the scariest scenes in the original episode was when Brennan got zapped and Hodgins became the proverbial deer-in-headlights, about to be hit by the car. I think it would have added great fear for Booth’s well being if we’d actually gotten a glimpse of him being surprised, perhaps even dragged along the ground. If the writers weren’t going to open with him already imprisoned, if they had the time it would have been frightening to see him get taken. Much better than the way they did go about it, which was to completely skip any sort of tension, instead showing Brennan and Booth chatting like normal and eventually, calmly, like no big deal, get to a scene with the Gravedigger’s demanding phone call. That approach felt boring.

That said, given who the Gravedigger turned out to be, it was fairly implausible that the killer was able to shock Booth, shove him through a window (seriously?), drag him to a car, take him to an abandoned ship, and lock him in a container, all without help and without being noticed by anyone.

Other implausibilities:

As Jude said, how is it possible that no one noticed or cared that the guest of honor didn’t show up for the event? Why use that as a reason for Booth and Brennan to meet up (and for Booth not to show up), when there are plenty of ways to create that no-show situation without the complications of something as big as a party in Brennan’s honor? The writers didn’t bother to come up with any sort of explanation, not even a throwaway line that would resolve the issue.

Also, why wasn’t Hodgins in a tux? Everyone else was dressed up -- he wasn’t going to attend an occasion where his own boss, his fellow colleague, was to be honored?

As well, why didn’t they change out of their fancy attire after the Gravedigger’s call came in? These people practically live out of that lab; I think it would have been entirely believable that most of them had changes of clothing there, especially Brennan. Especially given how they usually have to go to mucky, disgusting settings in order to investigate crime scenes. After a couple of times, I imagine they’d all make sure they had extra clothes around at the lab, after getting splattered with slime or wading through muddy waters. I get that they all wanted to get straight to the investigation, no time to spare, but it takes seconds to change into something more suitable for digging around and getting dirty. For me, Brennan’s big earrings and fancy outfit were distracting. If they were going to bother with using this troublesome party/event bit, I think at this point in the story it would have been more in character for her to change. They could have even used it to show how the call had completely flustered her, stirring up memories of her own Gravedigger nightmare, as she fumbled to change her clothes as quickly as possible so she could get to work and find Booth.

An even bigger plot convenience: Why is it that the FBI didn’t really give a damn about one of their own being kidnapped by a serial killer from an ongoing investigation? I get that Brennan, Cam and the rest of the Jeffersonian team felt they were better qualified to find Booth themselves, I definitely get why Hodgins felt so compelled to catch the Gravedigger… but not involving the FBI at all is one of those plot points that defies believability. There’s a lot of bureaucracy involved, but some things you just can’t skip or gloss over. If they had worked with the FBI, or had one quick scene where they managed to convince the FBI to allow them to do the examining of the evidence, there might have been more time available in the episode for more important moments than all that FBI and military ridiculousness with Agent Perotta and Jared Booth.

Speaking of Booth’s brother, I get that the Booth brothers aren’t particularly emotional people (and both military men, thus probably trained to compartmentalize in a crisis), but Jared didn’t seem particularly concerned about the possibility of losing his brother, and in the end, the writers didn’t even resolve anything involving his character. He got into trouble for stealing Vega’s body to bring to Brennan, they showed him in handcuffs, but they never went back to what happened to him. It’s possible they’ll go back to it in future episodes, but in the meantime, they didn’t even have him re-connect with his brother, after Seeley was saved. It was great to see Jared go out on a limb for his own brother after all the times Booth had done it for him, but his sacrifice might have had more impact if he and Booth had actually connected before the episode concluded. Without that, Jared’s story became a loose end plot point that seemed emotionally unsatisfying and a bit pointless. It’s an example of one of the many ways the writers touched potential, then pulled back without really delving deeply. It’s also an example of one of the many (too many) possibilities going on at once, making it nearly impossible for the writers to really explore anything satisfactorily.

One of the plot points that wasn’t adequately examined was the Gravedigger herself. How did she accomplish these acts on her own? What were the reasons behind the Gravedigger’s behaviors? It couldn’t just be about ransom money, because as Steph soundly points out, there are easier, more straightforward ways of accomplishing that goal. To bury someone alive, to allow them to suffocate and suffer such a horribly slow, frightening death… there has to be something that drove her to such vicious, angry, monstrous choices. Calling her insane is too simple an explanation. What was the deeper psychology of it?

That brings us to Sweets. I’ve complained frequently and loudly about the misuse of his character. How he’s too often been in the lab unnecessarily, how he’s been doing elements of Booth’s job when Booth can do those things himself, how he’s never really been established as a character with his own purpose. Here was one of those times where his character actually could have had a real purpose in the episode, rather than one drummed up as a convenience by the writers. He’s a psychologist, a criminal profiler, the perfect person to know or find out exactly what was going on in the Gravedigger’s head, to get her to reveal her pleasure in being in control and causing others such terror, or to show that it’s not an easy task, getting criminals to admit guilt, getting criminals to admit why they do the hideous things they do. Instead, they wasted the opportunity. The writers played him for a laugh (having him enter a crime scene, carrying one of Angela’s spike-heeled shoes for protection); they kicked him out (a reasonable idea under the circumstances, given that he works for the FBI and they didn’t want him to get into trouble or feel compelled to notify his superiors about what the Jeffersonian team was doing in secret); then they brought him back anyway. Why did he come back? If it was out of allegiance to his colleagues, they could have given him a line about that, but they didn’t bother. Was his presence necessary at that point in the episode? Did Angela really need his help with the video camera equipment at the cemetery? Wouldn’t it have been more dramatic if she’d realized that the site was booby-trapped and had to alert Brennan and Hodgins on her own, without all that verbal explanation to Sweets? It’s almost always better to show, not tell, especially in an episode like this, where building tension is everything.

One thing I will say I liked about Sweets in this episode was that moment when he seemed upset and repulsed at the others’ idea of using some sort of torture in order to get information out of the Gravedigger. Intellectually (and as a psychologist), I’m sure he felt there were more civil ways of interrogation, and it seemed in keeping with his character to say so. I was impressed that he did say so, especially under pressure when surrounded by all those other people who were so angry and personally affected by the case.

Once the Gravedigger was captured, that gave Sweets a purpose to be there again. That interrogation scene should have been his moment to shine, to show what he really could do. (Or to watch him get shaken up by the devious mind that had at different times managed to disturb everyone else.) Instead, during the interrogation he kept telling everyone else what wouldn’t work, rather than jumping in and finding something that would. He should have tried, at the very least. Otherwise, what’s the point of him even being there? His presence became unnecessary. He became one of the extra bodies that kept the episode from accomplishing a richly, emotionally connective experience with the viewers because there was too much going on and too many people involved.

It would have been great if they had focused more tightly on what the Gravedigger’s return meant for the original team members who had been affected, for a stronger emotional impact for the characters and for the viewers. The writers hinted at each person’s emotions, touched on them, but never really got up close and personal. They gave us glimpses, but ultimately, I think they kept us as viewers at arms’ length through the pacing of the episode, the writing, and in the way the shots were filmed.

In the original, we were trapped in the car with Hodgins and Brennan; everything was tight and intimate. In “Hero in the Hold,” Booth wasn’t stuck in a small container (not for long), and we didn’t really see his emotional reaction to waking up in such a place. The scene started with him already fighting to get out. That takes away some of the emotional connection for the audience. We didn’t feel his terror, or the enormous intensity of the ticking clock counting down, running out of time, not like we did with “Aliens in a Spaceship.” As well, many of the scenes seemed to be in open space, like Hodgins and Brennan in the cemetery, or Booth in the vast caverns of the abandoned ship; it wasn’t stiflingly intense like the original episode. Instead, we saw a lot of wide-angled shots, showing the entire setting, from a distance, from above, never really getting close to the characters, not like in “Aliens in a Spaceship” where everything was raw emotion and right there with the actors. Here in this new episode, I think those distance shots diffused some of the urgency and hold-your-breath scariness the episode could have had, and the pacing made it feel as though there was no time taken to really, truly experience what everyone was going through. They hit the emotion for a second, then pulled back and moved on.

For example, we had this great scene that opens with Hodgins manically doing push-ups, to relieve the tension he was feeling about the Gravedigger returning. But just as quickly as the scene started, the camera had already moved on, focusing on Brennan coming in, never getting in close enough for us to see Hodgins’ face or truly feel his intensity. And the fact that he jumped up and explained why he was doing the push-ups took a bit of the trauma out of it, instead making it a bit over-obvious. I’m not sure we needed a verbal explanation from him -- TJ managed to convey his character’s anxiety and tight mood physically. I think it might have been better if he had not said a word about it, just jumped up and avoided explaining himself. We would have gotten so much more out of that because the camera would have taken the time to pick up on TJ’s wonderful, subtle facial expressions that say so much without the need for words. Then we could move on to this marvelous tension between Brennan and Hodgins where she accuses him of stealing the FBI evidence. The look on Hodgins’ face in that moment was remarkable. TJ played it well; it was like there was something there but he was forcing himself to mask his true emotions, like Hodgins was unwilling to admit anything but deep down we could see something stirring up in him, a mess of emotions.

TJ was wonderful, but I kept wishing that they had given him at least one scene like he had in “Aliens in a Spaceship,” something that took the time and gave him the space to really let loose. What he had wasn’t enough. Actually, I don’t think any of the actors were given enough room to sit with their character’s emotions and really get into it. The original episode gave each character at least one scene (most had several) to express themselves and what they were experiencing. Everyone had his or her place within the story structure, and we got up close and personal with each one of them, and felt their raw emotions. We saw Cam’s quiet concern. We saw Zack flustered and nervous and uncertain. We saw Angela’s guilt (over turning Hodgins away even though she did care about him), and her immense worry about her best friend and the man she had feelings for. We saw Booth’s angry intensity, which tried to hide his true fears (that he might not find his partner Brennan in time), and we saw his fierce determination. We saw Brennan’s wonderful strength and focus, and we saw her tears (which is such a rare thing for her, thus so effective). And we saw Hodgins’ vulnerability, his physical pain, and in the end, his emotional anguish. The writing took the time to highlight and explore each person’s emotional journey, and that’s what made every scene so powerful.

But with this episode, they only touched on everyone’s feelings and then they pulled back and moved on. It went too quickly; they didn’t take the necessary time.

An example: there was that scene where Brennan and Hodgins tried to leave the evidence for the Gravedigger, and they noticed there were cameras set up by the killer, watching their every move. Hodgins stared up at the camera and practically screamed, “I WILL FIND YOU!” It was my favorite moment of the entire episode. Everything we needed was in TJ’s voice in that moment. It was chilling and intense, because we could hear the anguish and the desperate anger in his voice. I was afraid of him and afraid for him, watching him in that moment. It was fantastic.

The problem lies in how they handled things right after that moment. They didn’t zero in on Hodgins’ face, they didn’t stay with him and torture us with his pain. Nor did they bother to show a good reaction shot from Brennan, who was standing right next to him, or from Angela, who was watching him on the video feed (she seemed to blink in surprise, but they moved on too quickly to really let it provide an impact). Instead, they pulled up into this long camera shot from above, staring down at him and Brennan. It disconnected me from the emotion of the moment. Hodgins had me. TJ had me. The tone of his voice and those agonizing words, “I WILL FIND YOU!” had me. But the camera chickened out and pulled up and away. And the writers didn’t explore the power of what that moment meant for Hodgins as a character; they didn’t go back to that in any way during the episode, not for him or any of the other characters experiencing it with him. No one talked to him or yelled at him about it, no one expressed worry, no one gave him a hug. I wish we’d seen Angela try to speak to him about it, express her concerns about his rage, or try to comfort him or squeeze his hand to let him know she remembered the aftermath of what he’d gone through the first time. There were no moments.

There was so much potential and not enough of those types of gripping moments, the ones that grabbed our hearts in the original. They had plenty of opportunity to do so, and especially with the conflict between Hodgins and Brennan. I would have liked even more confrontation between the two of them. I liked Angela’s shock in finding out that Hodgins had stolen the evidence, like she didn’t realize how far gone he was about this case, how strongly he felt, and perhaps how long it’s been since she’s paid attention, given that they aren’t dating anymore. There may have been some terrific guilt on Angela’s part that could have been explored. She was there for him so beautifully the first time around; this time, she was disconnected from him, and that was really sad to see -- exploring that more in depth might have given us one of those rich moments. Also, Hodgins said to her, point blank, “You don’t know what it was like,” which is true, but she does know what it was like to worry and wonder and fear for Brennan and Hodgins, she does know how it affected Hodgins, she saw the aftermath of what it did to him (even more than we saw as viewers, I’ve no doubt). I think if the writers had taken the time, Angela would have made that point to him, she would have spoken up. Even if Hodgins didn’t respond to it right away, it would have established something for the two of them, or between him and Brennan, as they struggled to deal with each other and with what they were each feeling as this case re-emerged.

There was also potential in the Gravedigger interrogation scene near the end of the episode. Except for Sweets, everyone seemed to be experiencing murderous rage towards the killer. It was startling to watch because it made me question the lengths to which these people might go in order to get the information they needed. Without Sweets there, what would they have done? Would they have hit the woman or tried to torture her? That stirred up many questions about these characters, how they were handling the whole ordeal, how badly they’d been scarred by the original nightmare, and what they would do to arrest this criminal and find their friend, all of which could have been fascinating. Again, however, the writing was unfocused because there were too many ideas going on, too much to explore and not enough time to get to it all. As a result, they skirted around the edges of Hodgins’ rage and Brennan’s compartmentalization of everything (to the point of implausibly denying any feelings for Booth, even friendship or partnership care for him), rather than really digging into it and unearthing something honest. Again, touching on the possibilities rather than delving deep.

Something interesting that just occurred to me, as I thought about the possibilities for ‘moments’: they never really gave Booth a solid, intimate moment of his own in this episode. If anything, this would have been the perfect time to show him pray. It’s a big part of his character, it’s been mentioned repeatedly. I think it would have been a very nice touch, a beautifully poignant moment for him. Even if he didn’t say it all out loud. Even if it was short and sweet, just something he said quietly before trying to escape his prison. I think it would have been something very much in character for him. These are the opportunities the writers didn’t seem to take the time for, and that is very disappointing.

Another really powerful moment for me as a viewer was when they all discussed how the Gravedigger was ‘cleaning up’ after herself, disposing of all people and evidence that could incriminate her -- in that scene, Hodgins believed Booth was probably already dead, as part of the ‘clean up.’ The look on his face as the elevator doors closed was spot-on. I could really feel his guilt and upset, his almost giving up, his realization that he might be responsible for Booth’s death. It wrecked him, and we could see that through TJ. Awesome work in that moment.

But again, the writers never really returned to that. They revealed this emotion Hodgins was feeling, but they didn’t explore it any further. We didn’t get to see Hodgins with Booth. We didn’t get to see Brennan and Hodgins reconcile. Not including the scene with Booth and Brennan in the helicopter at the end, no one really had a scene to resolve their stories or their experiences. We didn’t see Hodgins feel closure at long last (or possibly, not feel quite satisfied after everything he’d been through). We didn’t see him reconnect with Brennan or Angela. We didn’t see Cam get to be a part of any of it, which isn’t fair because she did used to date Booth; she’s entitled to have feelings and concern for him, too. The powerful feelings of family and teamwork that were prevalent in the first episode weren’t found here. Despite the fact that the Gravedigger was still at large at the end of “Aliens in a Spaceship,” the small moments of resolution and closure that we did get were immensely satisfying and felt real and right.

The emotional subtleties of the original weren’t found here in this episode. No powerful, emotionally connective moments between characters. And there is no comparison to the gentle time they took in “Aliens in a Spaceship,” letting the rescue scene simply flow from one moment to the next, all scored so touchingly by “A Light on a Hill.” I wish “Hero in the Hold” had allowed for more character moments, rather than trying to cram in so much.

Overall, it wasn’t a bad episode. It just wasn’t as powerful as it could have been. It certainly wasn’t as devastating and gut-wrenching as the original. Everyone had a place in that story, and it was so emotionally fulfilling. I wish this episode had been able to accomplish it as well, in its own ways. “Hero in the Hold” has so much unrealized potential.
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ThyneAlone
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Re: Bones 4.14 Hero in the Hold

Post by ThyneAlone »

Wow, Sherry, that was magnificent. Such detailed, inspired observation. You've completely covered everything I wanted to say when I called it 'superficial'. I really enjoyed the character interaction that was there, but there wasn't enough. I do hope you don't mind you not quoting you at length as I'd prefer to, but I have to come back in agreement on some of your principal points..
Sinkwriter72 wrote: With “Hero in the Hold,” it seemed there was too much going on and most of it wasn’t dealt with subtlety or with good resolution.
There were moments, glimmers of potential, but it seemed like they pulled back from their own ideas rather than choosing to delve deeply.
Well, I think we have all been feeling for a while that we have expanded to too many characters to deal adequately with their individual feelings, even in less tense episodes. Possible 'moment' or connection between the core cast members? - in walks Sweets, or a temporary intern, or Booth's brother, or Caroline, or whoever, and it's lost. Because there wasn't enough time to explore the emotions of all the people close to Booth, Cam was overlooked (remember how he felt when he thought she was dying?) and Jared was made to appear callous and shallow.
Sinkwriter72 wrote:I would have liked it better if we hadn’t seen Teddy the entire time. It might have had more urgency and intensity if we’d seen Booth having to do all this stuff by himself, working, talking to himself as if Teddy were there. We might have then worried more about the state of his physical and mental well being..it would have been cool if the show had allowed us to see how resourceful Booth can be on his own. It took some of the power out of it, having Teddy there the whole time. It didn’t allow us to see Booth do what he does best. We could have felt more desperation for him...And perhaps we would have seen more desperation coming from him.
Yes, I don't understand why Booth has been so diminished over the last 2 seasons. They have made him look ridiculous a few times in the name of humour, they have brought in other characters to do bits of his job, they have made him depend hugely on other people. To me this is not his essential character. He may be a haunted individual, but he is a strong, resilient and intelligent one.
Sinkwriter72 wrote:..they never really gave Booth a solid, intimate moment of his own in this episode. If anything, this would have been the perfect time to show him pray. Even if he didn’t say it all out loud. Even if it was short and sweet, just something he said quietly before trying to escape his prison. I think it would have been something very much in character for him.
Oh yes - and a religious one too.
Sinkwriter72 wrote:it was fairly implausible that the killer was able to shock Booth, shove him through a window (seriously?), drag him to a car, take him to an abandoned ship, and lock him in a container, all without help and without being noticed by anyone...How did she accomplish these acts on her own? What were the reasons behind the Gravedigger’s behaviors? To bury someone alive...there has to be something that drove her to such vicious, angry, monstrous choices. Calling her insane is too simple an explanation.
Don't get me started on that. She was plucked from nowhere, as Gormagon was; her motives and history went unexplored even though there seemed to be a file on her from somewhere; the physical impossibilities of her atrocities were glaring.
Sinkwriter72 wrote:As Jude said, how is it possible that no one noticed or cared that the guest of honor didn’t show up for the event? Why use that as a reason for Booth and Brennan to meet up?...why didn’t they change out of their fancy attire after the Gravedigger’s call came in?
All I can suggest is something unbelievably shallow, ie that they really like dressing the characters up when they're on a case. Hallowe'en costumes, party frocks, Booth doing an 007, anything to prevent them going out in proper work clothes. They do all look stunning in evening wear, but it is simply inappropriate.
Sinkwriter72 wrote:Also, why wasn’t Hodgins in a tux? Everyone else was dressed up -- he wasn’t going to attend an occasion where his own boss, his fellow colleague, was to be honored?
Was it perhaps a misguided attempt to hark back to Hodgins' dislike of parties, small talk and anyone from his 'other life' who might be around? If it was, it might have been more credible had Brennan not been guest of honour. And the party was a ludicrous pretext anyway, as you say.
Sinkwriter72 wrote:Why is it that the FBI didn’t really give a damn about one of their own being kidnapped by a serial killer from an ongoing investigation? ...not involving the FBI at all is one of those plot points that defies believability. If they had had one scene where they managed to convince the FBI to allow them to do the examining of the evidence, there might have been more time for more important moments than all that FBI and military ridiculousness with Agent Perotta and Jared Booth.
All I can do here is nod in agreement and shake my head in bewilderment. Difficult to master simultaneously. Perotta is another peripheral who is startlingly pointless.
Sinkwriter72 wrote:Jared didn’t seem particularly concerned about the possibility of losing his brother, and in the end, the writers didn’t even resolve anything involving his character... didn’t even have him re-connect with his brother. It was great to see Jared go out on a limb after all the times Booth had done it for him, but his sacrifice might have had more impact if he and Booth had actually connected before the episode concluded.
I'm starting to think Jared was a mistake in the first place. He hasn't really told us that much about Booth, he's something of a caricature for whom it is hard to feel any understanding or empathy, and there is no room for him in this story, though I can see why the writers had to use him.
Sinkwriter72 wrote:That brings us to Sweets. Here was one of those times where his character actually could have had a real purpose in the episode...Instead...the writers played him for a laugh; they kicked him out; then they brought him back anyway. Did Angela really need his help with the video camera equipment at the cemetery? Wouldn’t it have been more dramatic if she’d realized that the site was booby-trapped and had to alert Brennan and Hodgins on her own? It’s almost always better to show, not tell.
Another thing that has been irritating me and of which Sweets' introduction is a fine concrete example; all of a sudden we need unsubtle words to tell us how people feel about one another, rather than actions or expressions? Worse, we need a person to tell us, even beyond some of the cardboard dialogue (especially between Hodgins and Angela and, needless to say, Brennan and Booth)? It's not as if the viewers aren't of reasonable intelligence.
Sinkwriter72 wrote:One thing I liked about Sweets in this episode was when he seemed upset and repulsed at the others’ idea of using torture. That scene should have been his moment to shine. Instead, he became one of the extra bodies that kept the episode from accomplishing a richly, emotionally connective experience with the viewers because there was too much going on and too many people involved...they skirted around the edges of Hodgins’ rage and Brennan’s compartmentalization of everything.
The Sweets use grows ever more bizarre. They use him when they don't need him and don't make anything of his appropriate moments. They should make up their minds whether he is comic relief, a genuine team member, or - my preference - an occasional helper when the case demands. Demands a profiler. Not an interviewer or someone out in the field.
Sinkwriter72 wrote:The writers hinted at each person’s emotions, touched on them, but never really got up close and personal. they kept us as viewers at arms’ length through the pacing of the episode, the writing, and in the way the shots were filmed...In the original, we were trapped in the car with Hodgins and Brennan; everything was tight and intimate. In “Hero in the Hold,”...many of the scenes seemed to be in open space; it wasn’t stiflingly intense like the original episode. we saw a lot of wide-angled shots, from a distance, from above, never really getting close to the characters. They hit the emotion for a second, then pulled back and moved on.
You're so right! The feel of the filming was completely different, less involved, less urgent. They seemed to want to move away from emotions to the wider picture. I suppose it might have been a conscious decision to show things from the criminal's POV (all those little chess pieces a long way off), but if so, it didn't really work.
And now, on to TJ:
Sinkwriter72 wrote:-- TJ managed to convey his character’s anxiety and tight mood physically...wonderful, subtle facial expressions that say so much without the need for words...marvelous tension between Brennan and Hodgins where she accuses him of stealing the FBI evidence. The look on Hodgins’ face in that moment was remarkable. TJ played it well; it was like there was something there but he was forcing himself to mask his true emotions, like Hodgins was unwilling to admit anything but deep down we could see something stirring up in him, a mess of emotions. I kept wishing that they had given him at least one scene like he had in “Aliens in a Spaceship.” I don’t think any of the actors were given enough room to sit with their character’s emotions...they only touched on everyone’s feelings and then pulled back and moved on.
It's a little more than he's had recently but still not enough to show his full range. That moment when he screamed at the camera was astonishing, as you say, but you can't act as effectively in a vacuum, and as you say:
Sinkwriter72 wrote:Nor did they bother to show a good reaction shot from Brennan, who was standing right next to him, or from Angela, who was watching him on the video feed Instead, they pulled up into this long camera shot from above, staring down at him and Brennan. I wish we’d seen Angela try to speak to him about it, express her concerns about his rage, or try to comfort him or squeeze his hand to let him know she remembered the aftermath of what he’d gone through the first time. There may have been terrific guilt on Angela’s part that could have been explored. She was there for him so beautifully the first time around; this time, she was disconnected from him.
At this point I am really beginning to feel that you could rewrite this very well! Ever tried that? They have missed out on a lot of opportunities for emotional continuity.
Sinkwriter72 wrote:We didn’t get to see Hodgins with Booth. We didn’t get to see Brennan and Hodgins reconcile...no one really had a scene to resolve their stories or their experiences. We didn’t see Hodgins feel closure at long last (or possibly, not feel quite satisfied after everything he’d been through). We didn’t see him reconnect with Brennan or Angela. We didn’t see Cam get to be a part of any of it, which isn’t fair because she did use to date Booth; she’s entitled to have feelings and concern for him, too. The powerful feelings of family and teamwork that were prevalent in the first episode weren’t found here.
...And there is no comparison to the gentle time they took in “Aliens in a Spaceship..”
I reckon this would have worked better as a 2-parter, I really do, given how much they were trying to squeeze in and how much they missed. They could have resolved these issues and looked at others in two episodes. As you say - replete with roads not taken!
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Re: Bones 4.14 Hero in the Hold

Post by Callieach »

Here, here, Sinkwriter72. Well said. You've hit the episodes proverbial flawed nail on the head with your mention of "moments". (Also, just how long did it take you type that all up? WOW.)

I'm ashamed to admit that Jack's "I WILL FIND YOU" didn't even stick with me to the end of the episode, because of the series of shots surrounding it. Good line, bad editing. So much could've been done there - a rubberband snap from Jack, a long I-wish-I-could-make-you-stop-hurting look from Angela, a half reproachful, half-understanding look from Brennan. But instead we got nothing.

Another one of your points brings up another objection I have to the episode. Ghosts, by almost every definition, are not physical. They are VISUAL constructs. Parker PHYSICALLY helps Booth. Aside from ghosts on a show about know-it-all scientists being flakey to begin with, ghosts on said show who are intereacted with as if they're made of solid human matter are frustrating. Example: Booth may have believed that he had to carry Parker after he was "wounded" by the blast, but he would not have exerted actual energy "carrying" the ghost.

Feel free to disagree with me on this last point. Supernatural phenomenon is great for discussion.
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Re: Bones 4.14 Hero in the Hold

Post by Sinkwriter72 »

:greetings-wavingyellow: Hi, Steph and Callie!
ThyneAlone wrote:Wow, Sherry, that was magnificent. Such detailed, inspired observation.


Hey, I'm just grateful you got through it without wanting to smack me upside the head because of the length of my rambling! ;) *BIG GRIN*

All kidding aside, thank you for reading it. Truly. I'm so pleased you found something worthwhile within it.

ThyneAlone wrote:Well, I think we have all been feeling for a while that we have expanded to too many characters to deal adequately with their individual feelings, even in less tense episodes. Possible 'moment' or connection between the core cast members? - in walks Sweets, or a temporary intern, or Booth's brother, or Caroline, or whoever, and it's lost. Because there wasn't enough time to explore the emotions of all the people close to Booth, Cam was overlooked (remember how he felt when he thought she was dying?) and Jared was made to appear callous and shallow.
*nodding* Exactly. Excellent points, Steph.

With everything so spread out amongst these characters, so unfocused, no real attention spent on any of them, how is there any time for genuine moments these days?

Tonight I was watching the season 1 finale "Woman in Limbo," and it brought me to tears ... 1) because the episode was so emotional and moving, and 2) because I don't think we've seen the writers take such beautiful time with their characters like that anymore, not in a long time. Everyone had their moment in that episode -- Zack bringing Brennan the evidence and talking with Brennan about the wounds found on the inside of Brennan's mother's skull; Hodgins finding the movie ticket and realizing Brennan's mother had been alive a lot longer than Brennan knew, Hodgins asking Angela what she thought he should do with that piece of information, Angela and Hodgins going to Brennan together, Angela trying to gently smooth things over, Hodgins trying to be strong and tell Brennan the truth; Angela amused and quietly knowing as Booth asked her why she thought Brennan didn't show Booth her latest manuscript and rambled on with his own thoughts about why not; Booth explaining very carefully to Brennan what he'd found out about her parents, bringing her food in the middle of the night, staying up talking with her about everything, giving her strength when she fell apart wondering who she really was, protecting Brennan when she confronted her mother's killer, there every step of the way. Even Russ -- whom we'd never met before -- fit right into the plot and had purpose in his scenes with Angela, with Booth, and with Brennan.

I watched those wonderful scenes, all written by Hart Hanson, and I just kept thinking, what's happened? Why isn't Hart doing it this way anymore? Does he think it's not a good way to approach his show? Did someone order him not to do it that way anymore because they want to market it differently? I just don't understand, I really don't. Because that episode was beautiful, just so heart-breaking and subtle. Every relationship felt spot-on, and connected appropriately and realistically within the structure of the story. Then I look at "Hero in the Hold" and I wonder why they didn't have that flow, that connection between characters, that attention to relationships, in that episode. It makes me sad.

I especially love your point about the relationship between Booth and Cam. Back when she was in the hospital, he was right by her side through it all. He was so worried about her (and probably felt responsible too, since he'd pushed her so hard to drill into that skull without following protocol). Even if their characters weren't romantically linked any longer, it was still nice to see his devotion to someone he genuinely cared about. There's nothing wrong with showing that! It seems these days they avoid showing any relationships that aren't to do with furthering Booth and Brennan's potential romance. As if allowing Cam to express concern about her former boyfriend and lover would somehow ruin or diminish the connection between Booth and Brennan? I don't think that's quite fair or true, do you? If anything, the concern everyone showed for Hodgins and Brennan in the original Grave Digger story was quite moving to me as a viewer. Romance doesn't have to be the sole reason for one character caring about another. There are plenty of other powerful connections that generate love. The friendship between Angela and Brennan is one prime example. The team's proud feelings about Booth their fearless team leader is another.

For "Hero in the Hold," here's one possibility: they could have played up the amusingly bizarre sort-of friendship Booth and Hodgins have. That, combined with Hodgins feeling guilty over getting Booth kidnapped and possibly killed, could have had enormous impact. As I said in my initial post, I feel they touched on this, but never followed through with it enough to have a strong impact. The elevator doors closing on Hodgins' stricken face sparked the flame, but when they didn't have any sort of resolution for it, that potential died out. Could have been so much more powerful.

So many options unrealized. :think:

ThyneAlone wrote:All I can suggest is something unbelievably shallow, ie that they really like dressing the characters up when they're on a case. Hallowe'en costumes, party frocks, Booth doing an 007, anything to prevent them going out in proper work clothes. They do all look stunning in evening wear, but it is simply inappropriate.
:doh: :roll:

Heh.

Yes, they do look stunning, there's no question about that. (Which is why it would have been nice to see TJ in a tux, too, if only for a moment before he had to change. Alas.)

Sinkwriter72 wrote:Also, why wasn’t Hodgins in a tux? Everyone else was dressed up -- he wasn’t going to attend an occasion where his own boss, his fellow colleague, was to be honored?
ThyneAlone wrote:Was it perhaps a misguided attempt to hark back to Hodgins' dislike of parties, small talk and anyone from his 'other life' who might be around? If it was, it might have been more credible had Brennan not been guest of honour. And the party was a ludicrous pretext anyway, as you say.
Good point. I did think about that, how Hodgins tries to avoid going to parties, especially to stay away from those 'other life' individuals from the ritzy set. I like the continuity of it, if that was the writers' intent. Still, like you and I discussed, why make Brennan the guest of honor, then? That's one invite he probably wouldn't be able to avoid (and probably wouldn't want to avoid, given that he is friends with Brennan and would be proud of her accomplishment). *sigh* Plot points of silliness. Keep it simple(r)! :D
ThyneAlone wrote:I'm starting to think Jared was a mistake in the first place. He hasn't really told us that much about Booth, he's something of a caricature for whom it is hard to feel any understanding or empathy, and there is no room for him in this story, though I can see why the writers had to use him.
I know, I really struggled with that one. They brought him into the season, so they can't ignore him because he is Booth's brother so it's reasonable that he'd be contacted if Booth were kidnapped and in such danger. But like you said, his presence has been caricature-like, and this story already had so many people to cover, he ended up getting in the way. Especially because they didn't have time to give him and Booth a moment together in the end, to really reinforce the impact of Jared finally doing right by his brother. If they didn't have time to do it right, why not wait and give Jared his own episode with Booth, where they could devote the time to advancing the brothers' story? Or, stop pushing the Booth/Brennan agenda so much and give up some of the screen time for some of these other character possibilities, like Jared, or Hodgins, or Cam, etc.?

In fact, this is a frustration of mine for this entire season: the episodes seem formed to always create that Booth and Brennan 'moment,' rather than allowing for other characters to have moments with one another, or with Booth and/or Brennan. Why? Is Booth/Brennan the sole purpose of Season 4?

In "Hero in the Hold," there were so many possibilities for wonderful moments between characters: Booth and Brennan, yes of course, but also the team and Cam, Booth and Cam, Brennan and Angela, Hodgins and Booth, Jared and Booth, even the Grave Digger and Sweets (wouldn't that have been a compelling scene for John Francis Daley to finally get to dig into?)... not everything has to be pointed toward romance to move or impact viewers.

Like in "Woman in Limbo": just watching Brennan turn to her team and thank them for working so hard, staying all night, trying to find anything they could in order to help solve her mother's murder was so touching. Likewise, Hodgins mildly panicking and asking Angela what he should do with the evidence he found about Brennan's mom was such a very cool scene, because it accomplishes a couple of important things: it shows his concern for Brennan's feelings and also shows that he trusts Angela to be discreet, help him, and give him good advice.

ThyneAlone wrote:Another thing that has been irritating me and of which Sweets' introduction is a fine concrete example; all of a sudden we need unsubtle words to tell us how people feel about one another, rather than actions or expressions? Worse, we need a person to tell us, even beyond some of the cardboard dialogue (especially between Hodgins and Angela and, needless to say, Brennan and Booth)? It's not as if the viewers aren't of reasonable intelligence.
UGH. Exactly. Exactly! Do not even get me started on that! It drives me nuts! :angry-cussingblack:
Sinkwriter72 wrote:Nor did they bother to show a good reaction shot from Brennan, who was standing right next to [Hodgins], or from Angela, who was watching him on the video feed. Instead, they pulled up into this long camera shot from above, staring down at him and Brennan. I wish we’d seen Angela try to speak to him about it, express her concerns about his rage, or try to comfort him or squeeze his hand to let him know she remembered the aftermath of what he’d gone through the first time. There may have been terrific guilt on Angela’s part that could have been explored. She was there for him so beautifully the first time around; this time, she was disconnected from him.
ThyneAlone wrote:At this point I am really beginning to feel that you could rewrite this very well! Ever tried that? They have missed out on a lot of opportunities for emotional continuity.
:shifty: Have I ever tried that? Hmm. In what way do you mean? As a spec script or screenplay, or as a piece of fiction like a story, or ?

I admit, back when I watched The West Wing -- after I found out what 'fan fiction' was -- I found myself inspired to try my hand at writing a few short stories, basic scenes that in my mind could have transpired after the end of an episode, or sandwiched in between actual show scenes, moments I felt that might have further explored the character's emotions, or his/her connections with other characters. I especially liked exploring the character Toby Ziegler, probably because he was so internal about expressing his emotions on the show that I felt he probably had moments 'off camera' that would explain things better, you know what I mean? Richard Schiff played that character so wonderfully, so subtly, that he inspired me to further explore the mind of Toby Ziegler, to understand him better, to figure out what made him tick. I found him fascinating.

(And Sharon could probably confirm the bitty piece I wrote in protest to a particular story arc that I felt was completely out-of-character for Toby. It's only 155 words, but it was meant as an apology to the guy, because the writers -- in my opinion, and according to reports, also the actor's opinion -- were dead wrong to do to Toby what they did in the final season. Writing that little piece was my way of being in Toby's corner, as it were. *sheepish grin*)

I confess I've never written anything extensively, not to rewrite a story or episode that didn't do what it should have. I've read a lot of people's works that were inspired because they felt the writers dropped the ball. Case in point: my friend Susan ended up creating an entire X-Files trilogy because the show started unraveling in season six and lost their sense of the characters -- it's quite excellent, actually, and sometimes I wish I could see the actors perform it the way Susan wrote it because I think it would have been unbelievably amazing and riveting.

But no, I've never rewritten anything in that way. My ideas have always felt like extensions of the original work, you know what I mean? "Extra" scenes, because the original episode made me thoughtful about it, but not rewrites.

If ever there were a time to try it, this would probably be it because, as you say so astutely, they seemed to have missed out on many great opportunities for emotional continuity. I obviously have lots of opinions about what could have been explored better. (Hee.) :oops: :mrgreen: But... *shrugs* I don't know. I hadn't thought about it. A part of me would love to. If I did, I'd want to honor "Aliens in a Spaceship" as well as I possibly could. But that may be an impossible task. I'm not sure I have enough confidence in my own writing skills to do it justice. :think:

ThyneAlone wrote:I reckon this would have worked better as a 2-parter, I really do, given how much they were trying to squeeze in and how much they missed. They could have resolved these issues and looked at others in two episodes. As you say - replete with roads not taken!
I think this is an excellent point, Steph. It was such an important episode, with so much to cover for so many characters, it really would have done much better as a 2-parter. More time to do it really well! Alas. :? Alas.

Will you look at me rambling on and on again? Callie, I'll be back to comment on your post very soon! Thank you both for discussing this with me.

I love that people here have opinions and like to have a thorough conversation without yelling at each other. That makes me happy. You're all wonderful! :happy-cheerleadersmileygirl:
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Hodgins
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Re: Bones 4.14 Hero in the Hold

Post by Hodgins »

Oh my goodness. Some people do have some long and well, long views.

I just finished this episode so I believe I am now up to date with all you people across the pond.

I don't think I was too disappointed as such to be honest. It was a decent watch. I've not got much to complain about.

Can't help but find myself starting to like Sweets though. When he first came on the scene, he made me cringe, I just couldn't get my head round why he annoyed me so much but he's slowly grown on me. I guess in a way like both Hodgins and Zack did, two characters whom on a first viewing I didn't really pick up on. But as it progressed I realised obviously I actually fell in love with the pair.

Anyway, back to the episode, Mr B did a fantastic job with the 'ghost' scenes on the boat. I really did enjoy the story behind it all and such.

On a side note, completely off topic I know, but what with my love of Bones and your obvious love of Bones, I thought I would drop in the fact that I've been working today with children at the local leisure centre and one of the kids is pretty much identical to Parker. Everytime I see him he just reminds me of him. Thought I'd share that thought with you.

And now I'm rambling so I'll stop. :D
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begolden
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Re: Bones 4.14 Hero in the Hold

Post by begolden »

Well, here I am, two weeks late to post about this episode, and finding that everyone else has said everything there is to be said--and eloquently at that! At any rate, I will try to get my two-cents in...

I will admit (with some shame) that I fast forwarded through all the Booth scenes, watching only the scenes of the Squints working together to find our trusty hero. It was wonderful to see TJ in so many scenes, as well as seeing him play an emotional role in this episode. I enjoyed the fact that he was playing maverick-Hodgins and following his own set of rules. However, in the final analysis, this episode still pales in comparison to its predecessor.

Think I'll go back and rewatch "Aliens in a Spaceship" one more time...
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