April 2, 2012

Bones - Season 7, Episode 7 (Review)

Welcome back, everyone!  Season 7 of Bones has returned following Emily Deschanel's real-life maternity leave.  She's noticeably fake-pregnant in this episode, and the birth scene is utterly cringe-worthy.  Let's get to it!

The Prisoner in the Pipe

Episode Summary
So there's this kid who looks to be at least 5 who won't poop in the potty without a kitten and an ice cream truck or something.  She lifts the lid and - bam! - is surprised by some floating body parts.  Cue staggered screaming from her father.

Meanwhile, Booth and Brennan are taking a tour of a local hospital.  Because you wait until your due date to do that.

At the kid's house, Brennan identifies an entire sphenoid and half a maxilla, but there's no mention of the hilarious toe floater from the first scene.  The Jeffersonian team figures that all the bones are from one person, since there's no duplication (MNI = 1).  From the maxillary sinus, Brennan assesses the skeleton as male.  She also notices a lens implant in the eye, which Saroyan excises and Angela traces to Rob Lazebnik, a man in Jamestown prison for perpetrating a Ponzi scheme.

Brennan and Booth investigate a murder at a prison (credit: FOX)
The Jeffersonian team attempt to figure out what caused Lazebnik's death.  The ocular fluid has a negative tox screen.  A fragment of the right 9th rib has striations consistent with a stab wound, but Brennan can't conclude from just this one bone that the man was stabbed.  Hodgins sends a robot into the sewer, and he and Daisy find more pieces of the dead man.  Daisy notices some remodeling of fractures to the manubrium, the left clavicle, and two upper ribs.  These breaks occurred more than a year ago, around the time Lazebnik entered prison.  Angela reconstructs the skeleton, and Daisy notes a nick on the anterior portion of the first lumbar vertebra.  This suggests a stabbing, if a 3.75" object went through a doubled-over Lazebnik and slit his inferior vena cava. The body was likely dismembered using acid, as Daisy finds micropitting on the bones.  They also realize that Lazebnik was killed in prison and dumped into the sewer, which sends Booth and Brennan to Jamestown to see what they can find out.

B&B meet with one guard and the warden.  Both are creepy, but not killers.  Because of the micropitting, they suspect that Lazebnik was dismembered with hydrochloric acid, which is being used in the mailbox-making facility on the prison grounds.  They talk to the head of the operation (whose name I didn't catch), but even though his parents were swindled out of money by Lazebnik, he didn't kill him.  They also find the shiv that likely killed him.  Brennan starts having contractions, but Angela finds another clue: from the paper that made up the shiv, she reconstructs a recipe from a prison cookbook.  Brennan takes a crappy cell-phone picture of fingerprints she got by dusting the cookbook with cocoa, and Angela runs them through the Jamestown database: Hayes Jackson, who works in the kitchen and befriended Lazebnik, eventually killed him.  Because Hodgins found prison-grade rubber in the bones, Brennan chases Jackson asking to see his shoes, because four weeks after a murder, there would still be tiny bone fragments in them.  She goes into labor in the middle of a prison fight.

This being TV, Brennan is going to give birth immediately.  She can't make it 10 miles to the hospital.  So Booth pulls over at a swanky B&B, but the proprietor turns them away.  He relents and lets them use the stable.  Cue ridiculous and utterly unnecessary Christian overtones.  Brennan pushes, and Booth delivers the baby.  They gaze at the baby, not bothering to warm her up or nurse her.

It's unclear if they go to the hospital, since Brennan is wearing the exact same clothes, but the Jeffersonian team is waiting for them at home.  In the dark.  Because they're unafraid of an FBI agent shooting them.  It's actually kind of endearing that they put up a banner with Welcome Stapes.  They name the baby Christine, after Brennan's mother (and, you know, after Jesus himself, because of course an anthropologist who thinks religion is stupid would name her baby that).

Forensic Comments
  • The opening scene had me laughing out loud.  The toe was somehow connected to a... metatarsal?  I dunno, but it certainly wasn't a proximal first foot phalanx.  Then the toe disappeared when Brennan went through an inventory of pieces.
  • And, hey, can an entire sphenoid fit through a toilet drain?  I had a frog come up through mine once. So I actually feel for the poor little poo-shy girl.  It's been two years, and I still turn the light on if I get up in the middle of the night.  But the frog was tiny.  Sphenoids are huge.  And funny-shaped.
  • Why didn't Saroyan have a strainer to get the eye out of the toilet?  That's just piss-poor planning (pun alert!).
  • Brennan was really reaching for a sex estimation: maxillary sinus?  Wouldn't, I dunno, tooth size be better than that?  I know that those sinuses can work almost as fingerprints, but sex estimation from the maxillary sinus is only like 70% accurate.
  • I wouldn't let anyone put rose water on bones.  Especially not in a murder investigation.  I don't care if it's "inert."  Poor judgment, Miss Wick.
  • The ends of the clavicle are medial (towards the midline) and lateral (towards the arm), not "distal" as Daisy said.
  • Why did Lazebnik, clearly a white-collar criminal, go to a maximum security prison?
  • Cocoa powder?  And a crappy cell phone picture?  Really?  That would stand up in a court of law? (And those prints would even be there after 4 weeks? Along with the teeny bone fragments in Jackson's shoes?)
Dialogue and Drama
  • I hate TV baby-birthing scenes.  They seem to all be written by men who have never attended an actual birth.  Anyway, many of my complaints can be summed up with this link to Angela's birthing episode.
  • But really, Brennan's labor was way too fast (car baby!).  She didn't warm the baby up afterward.  She didn't immediately put the baby to her breast.  These are things you learn in birthing class.  And, well, as an anthropologist.  At least they smeared the 3-month-old newborn stand-in with jelly. (Guesses at to whether it was Deschanel's real baby, Henry?)
  • I simply cannot get over the manger-birth scene and the fact Brennan named her baby after Jesus, immediately following her complaints about baptism, religion, and mythologies.  Do the writers hate Brennan?  Because they're writing her as compromising more and more of her principles every episode.
  • Let's talk about the characters' appearances back from hiatus... Deschanel's hair is sooooo shiny.  I remember when my hair was that shiny thanks to prenatal vitamins.  And is it me, or did John Francis Daley gain some weight?

Ratings
Forensic Mystery - C-.  So, they got the victim's name from his corneal implant.  And they knew he was stabbed pretty early on.  There wasn't much mystery here.

Forensic Solution - B-.  Most of the forensic work didn't stretch the imagination too much.  The cocoa fingerprints were suspicious, though.

Drama - D.  Manger.  'nuff said.

I am vaguely interested to see what happens next week.  Angela and Hodgins' baby was featured for, like, two episodes (but didn't even make an appearance at the B&B baby homecoming in this one!), but this baby is the product of the two main characters, so I'm curious how the writers will handle it.

8 comments:

mysticalbeast said...

of course the writers hate Brennan. They made her pregnant by griefsex as if she never heard of contraception. Than she had to "confess" to Booth (telling him "you're the father - out of the dozens possible?) and was only able to enjoy her (long wished) pregnancy after his approving smile - She was once a strong selfconfident and independent character *sigh*

Kristina Killgrove said...

Oooh, good points. It's like the writers thought Brennan was a feminazi for five seasons, and now they're trying to "reform" her... with the love of a good man and a pregnancy to keep her in her place. I don't know if I can watch next season.

Lynn said...

Hilarious review, thanks. In addition to the love of a good (though challenging) man and a pregnancy, I think we can expect Brennan to find that mama-baby connections make anthropologists all soft and emotional. Calling Steve Rhoads in for a consult.

Rachel Perash said...

I'm surprised the woman who never wanted to have children and pretty much hated them never thought about having an abortion or putting the baby up for adoption.

The writers were also very unclear that B&B had sex. It just showed them laying down crying and then Brennan told Angela she "slept" with Booth. Since when is she shy about saying sex or sexual intercourse?

The show seems to be going downhill and I'm with you about possibly not watching any more seasons.

Co Co said...

OMG what a train reck! Born in a manger? Busting through a prison, turned away at the Inn? Really? Are you kidding me? Who wrote this? FIRE THEM!!! I love Bones, I can watch over and over, this one, never again. Will I keep watching?
You will need to give me something worth watching, if this is a sample of what is to come, my answer is No!!!

Jinx said...

i'm with most of you on how they screwed up Brennan's character. In the first two seasons, she carried guns, had f'ing awesome martial arts skills, and now? nothing. she is no longer independent as she was in the beginning. And i found the fact that she gave birth in a stable just pathetic. Really? come on. But, i didn't even realize the thing about CHRISTine until now. Was that coincidence? maybe not...
i think Brennan needs to become more compassionate, even if it isn't really her style. i mean, come on, she has a daughter now! and she needs to let Booth "be the father" as he said he needs to be, by listening to him about safety precautions. Espcially when you're in maximum security prisons! -.-

chefgeo said...

it was BORING, BORING, BORING! All the characters were unbelievable and inconsistent with normal traits. getting sick of brilliant but childishly "stupid" sex crazed Daisy. She's like some hormone driven self-obsessed idiot savant. and why the heck would Saroyen be walking into Brennans office to find Sweets disheveled? I'm not digressing just pointing out some of my personal issues with the episode. The whole thing stinks of high school creative writing wannabe and a director from a community college first year visual arts/media class. I always ask myself when it comes to a show (tv or movies) where the participants appear talented and intelligent based upon previous work: How the hell do they let it fall apart this badly? Are actors so mindless and maleable that they cant smell the stink of a lousy episode? Why wouldnt they draw attention to the lack of consistency and the weaknesses in plot, story continuity and character development? Believe me, if my muili-million dollar salary and career depended on it I would be all over those crap writers and directors. I performed in community theater for 14 years and always argued particulars with the directors let alone glaring horrible mistakes like this episode was full of. Well I am one that will refuse to fill my evenings with lousy TV even for nostalgia sake. So I hope they bring back the quality or its the end of Bones.

The Bra Lady said...

My comment to my spouse about this episode was that BOnes had "jumped" the shark". If you aren't familiar with that Phrase, Google Fonzie and Happy Days. Pardon the pun but this show is headed for the boneyard!

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