Bones 11×05 ‘The Resurrection in the Remains’: It’s the great pumpkin crossover, Ichabod Crane!

Source: FOX

Given how long Bones has been on the air, it’s probably surprising it hasn’t been forced to cross over with another FOX show before now. Yet it’s a network-stalwart rite of passage, and this week, the show teams up with Sleepy Hollow (its Thursday night time slot partner) for a little Halloween magic (and ratings stunt). You wouldn’t think a show about a hyper-rational scientist and another about a time-traveling revolutionary soldier would be natural allies, yet here we are, and you know what? I’m all for it.

As a fan of both shows, I was extremely curious (and skeptical) about how they would combine the two worlds, given that they exist on such different planes, though excited to see how they’d interact. (Let’s just forget that Sleepy Hollow the novel — and show — exists in the Bones universe and save ourselves the headaches.) So here’s this week’s conceit: a set of current-day remains are found in an abandoned church next to a two-hundred-year-old set missing its head. While Brennan and Booth set out to solve the murder of a young medical student, Ichabod Crane and Agent Abbie Mills travel to Washington to claim the redcoat soldier, which doesn’t jibe with Brennan. However, she allows Crane to stick around and peruse the Jeffersonian archives to solve his own crime in the meantime, while Abbie helps Booth solve the woman’s murder so they can get out of Dodge. Teamwork, everyone!

Source: FOX

Source: FOX

I was quite pleased by how the dynamics worked, overall. Abbie’s lost two mentors in the last three seasons of her show, so seeing her shadow Booth was strangely heartwarming; however, I was even more impressed by our agent’s reaction to her. Despite the plot-device nature of their connection (Booth knew her former boss, and he’d spoken to him about her), he really took her under his wing, and demonstrated an openness to her he hasn’t even with some of his own protégés (like Sweets or Aubrey). Plus, I liked that while Abbie was deeply respectful of him, she also stood her ground when she felt it was right (like when she pursued a lead on her own). I’m not sure whether the writers were just being extra-accommodating of their visitors, or if this is yet another side-effect of the calmer, gentler Booth we’ve been seeing so far this season, but I’m all for seeing this side of him.

I particularly liked Brennan and Ichabod’s relationship because they are the two who are most outwardly different. Yet, they both share a love of knowledge, and pursue it for its own sake, and it’s obvious they’re of like minds in that regard. (Not gonna lie, I’ve been dreaming of their meeting for years. It was everything I’d ever hoped for and more.) As someone who loves both series, it was a trip to see them play off each other. Brennan’s roots are in historical finds, so it was neat watching her get involved in the death of General Howe and appreciate Ichabod’s, um, dedication to historical representation. Meanwhile, the Jeffersonian really is the embodiment of its namesake’s vision, and as someone who actually lived side by side Jefferson, Ichabod looked like a kid in a candy store at the lab. I’d totally be fine with them returning to solve another old case in the future, which I didn’t think I’d be able to say a few months ago.

Source: FOX

Source: FOX

I did have two minor gripes, though. Firstly, I felt like all of the squints “shipping” Abbie and Ichabod so loudly was a little too on-the-nose, and was shoehorned in. It’s one thing to make the newbies feel uncomfortable for the sake of making them squirm (of which I’d approve, because hijinks!), but both hours made a point of painting them as “made for each other” just like Booth and Brennan, which seemed unnecessary to me. (Maybe my personal feelings on the matter are coloring my perspective, though.)

Secondly, I was a little irked at Brennan regressing to describing love as a mere drive for procreation in the second hour, especially since we’ve seen some lovely moments from her over the last few seasons in which she’s admitted emotions are more intangible than that. I’m not sure if that was due to the Sleepy Hollow writers painting her in broad strokes, or if the Bones writers added that line merely to get a rise out of Ichabod (and get yet another Booth-and-Brennan-sex-life joke out of it), but it was a tad disappointing in an otherwise shockingly successful effort. It wasn’t enough to taint the episode, but it did allow me to give them all a little side-eye for the comment.

Source: FOX

Source: FOX

Again, as a fan of both shows, it’s hard to separate the two episodes and focus just on Bones here. While I feel like Bones did a better job of integrating Sleepy’s characters into its case of the week and showcasing them as foils, I think I actually slightly preferred the latter’s hour, in that it wasn’t bound by the constraints of “reality” to involve the Jeffersonian crew. (I wonder what ‘Ressurection’ would be like if the case centered on solving Howe’s murder in present-day, rather than using him as a jumping off point to the med student’s untimely demise.)

That all being said, it was absolutely a fun night for the veteran. It’s been years since we’ve had a holiday-themed episode, and seeing Brennan so dedicated to her Halloween theme was delightful — she might not be dressing up as Wonder Woman anymore, but she gets into the spirit with even more fervor now that she’s a mom. (As an aside, dressing the kids up as Jane Goodall and her chimp is a stroke of brilliance. Kudos, Bones!) Moreover, Booth trying to prank her back was another callback to older times, and I’m genuinely enjoying the return to the show’s roots this year. Here’s hoping it doesn’t end there!

Did you enjoy the Halloween Crossover Spectacular this week?

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.

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