Bones 10×16 ‘The Big Beef at the Royal Diner’: 206 and counting

Source: FOX

This week, Bones celebrates a landmark: not only does it now have as many episodes as there are bones in the human body (get it?), but it officially becomes the longest-running drama in FOX history. So what better way to mark the occasion than by investigating one of their own, the Royal Diner?

It’s funny that over the years, the Diner has almost become a character unto itself; it really is an extension of all the squints’ homes, so I really enjoyed that we got to delve into its world a little bit in this episode. I loved that all the staff know the squints on a first-name basis, particularly Booth and Brennan (and apparently Christine, too), since they’ve sure spent enough hours there over the years. It was really heartening to see such a familiarity between our duo and waitress Joanne and cook Frankie, because I think it adds a small dose of reality into the Bones universe, in that it extends their world beyond the insularity of the lab or FBI. While it seems unbelievable that a food critic would ever dare give the Royal Diner a failing grade, I appreciated how the whole team banded together to try to save their regular eatery — even when the evidence seemed to point right at it.

Source: FOX

Source: FOX

One thing that struck me about this episode is how it wove so many of the currently-active story lines into one hour — save for Brennan’s pregnancy. (You know things are about to get serious when you get a “Previously on Bones” disclaimer before the teaser.) First, we have Hodgins’ “unbreakable” rubber flooring from last week, which apparently is projected to sell 20 million units, thus making him wealthy all over again. Clearly, the speed at which this is all happening is impossible, and awfully convenient, but at the same time, I feel so bad about how he lost all his family’s fortune at the hands of Pelant that I’m happy he seems to be back on track to regaining some of it! I suspect that this time around, Hodgins is going to have more of a proactive role in how he distributes that wealth, as we’ve seen in the past few seasons that he’s very capable of living on a comparatively modest budget. His family’s company was once the biggest donor to the Jeffersonian, and I could see Hodgins himself becoming the lab’s newest benefactor, given how much he loves to play with its toys. (And I loved how Cam was genuinely happy for him, and even more that she delighted in the bureaucratic nonsense that prevented the Jeffersonian from benefitting financially from the discovery. )

Source: FOX

Source: FOX

Next, we have Arastoo’s trip to Iran, which is unsettling Cam. Though I found the constant mentions of him stalled the episode a little, I do think we got some wonderful scenes between Cam and her co-workers as a result that prove just how tight-knit they’ve become. I especially enjoy her interactions with Clark, so I’m glad that he got to be the voice of reason (that Arastoo is fine), even if I was a irked that he was being dragged into the middle of their drama. However, I think her scene with Brennan was incredibly on-point: Arastoo didn’t invite her along because he didn’t want to put her in harm’s way, and any of them would have done the same thing for their loved ones. Brennan is a lot more emotionally astute than anyone gives her credit for, so I was thrilled that for once, Cam acknowledged her wisdom on the matter. (After all, Brennan did just that when she went on the run, but I don’t think we’re supposed to remember that.)

Source: FOX

Source: FOX

Speaking of Clark and Brennan, watching them team up to write a new take on the “Bone Song” was unexpectedly sweet, too. I loved the callback to their conversation in season 9 after he broke up with his girlfriend, in which Brennan encouraged him to call her by her first name, as she does him, and it was hilariously awkward to see him test out “Temperance.” It’s weird, but she’s right that they are equals now, and she wants him to know it. And where the Brennan of the past could have conceivably brushed off his attempts at help, now she welcomes his contributions to her rap. I’d love to see more of this side of them, and hope the writers have dropped the hyper-competitiveness between them for good, now, because they seem to have turned a page in their relationship.

While we’re on the subject of that song: how adorable was that?! I’m all for anything that gets kids interested in science, and I enjoy seeing Brennan’s creative side bust out. (This is the woman who has several best-selling novels, and once contemplated writing a children’s book, so it’s obvious she’s good with words.) I admit to being a little frustrated with Booth’s seeming irritation with her project at times: if either of them is “musically inclined,” it’s definitely Brennan, so I don’t know why he’d dismiss her attempts. Given how thrilled Christine was to be rapping with her mom, I think there’s a market out there for educational ditties like this!

Source: FOX

Source: FOX

Finally, we have one of the subtlest, yet most poignant, moments of the episode: Booth pops into Brennan’s office just to give her a gift — a beautiful (and expensive) necklace. There’s nothing romantic in it to me: it screams desperation, because it’s obvious Booth is on a slippery slope, and that necklace is bought with ill-gotten gains from his gambling. I definitely appreciate the realistic approach the show is taking to Booth’s downward slide. He’s on a winning streak, and he feels like if he uses the money for good (i.e. showering his wife gifts), then the ends justify the means. It will so very obviously come crashing down on him, but I like that the writers are dropping clues, especially because Booth’s excuse about why he left his gambling sobriety chip in the hamper is clearly sending alarm bells ringing in Brennan’s head.

Did you have any big beefs with ‘Big Beef’?

 

is willing to talk about TV to anyone who will listen. She’s thought way too hard about her favorite shows, ever since her grade school days watching “Full House.” She likes to write a lot, about everything. She enjoys candlelight dinners and long walks on the beach… Whoops, wrong profile.

Both comments and pings are currently closed.

Comments are closed.