Two Booths Don’t Make a Right on BONES Season 11 Premiere
By Olga Kijana
The highly-anticipated season premiere of FOX’s Bones was every bit as heart-stopping as promised.
The joy of seeing Booth and Brennan, Christine and baby Booth as a happy family enjoying their new murder-free lifestyle was fleeting as the squints were called to a crime scene later that night, discovering a charred body and a gun – Booth’s gun.
Could the body really be Booth’s? If not, whose is it, and where is Booth? Is he to blame for what happened to the victim?
Meanwhile, how have things been running at the FBI and the Jeffersonian since Booth and Brennan’s departure? And will those changes help or hinder Brennan’s attempts to get to the bottom of the mystery surrounding Booth’s disappearance, the true identity of the charred remains and her husband’s involvement with a criminal gang?
Those are the questions the season opener, ominously called The Loyalty In The Lie, attempts to answer as Brennan, the squints, Aubrey and Caroline are joined in the investigation by Special Agent Grace Miller (Kim Raver), who is convinced of Booth’s guilt.
At first glance life seems to be going well for Booth and Brennan who have adjusted to their career changes, with Brennan cataloging artifacts sent from Munich and making sure Christine is aware of the difference between an axe and a plough, and Booth playing with baby Booth and getting ready for a seemingly ordinary day as a freelancer training young FBI agents. The banter and plan to visit Hodgins and Angela in the evening with the kids.
However, a crime scene makes it clear that the play date at Angela and Hodgins’ will have to be cancelled. To everyone’s horror, the gun found on the body is registered to Booth, and the remodeled fractures on the body, burned to a crisp, bear a striking resemblance to Booth’s, based on his abusive childhood and injuries sustained in the military. To make matters worse, Brennan discovers Booth left his wedding ring at home before leaving that morning.
Despite Arastoo’s conviction that the victim is Booth, Brennan refuses to accept that her husband is gone without seeing the evidence with her own eyes. With Cam’s permission, she examines the bones herself, fighting the emotions as memories that rush through her mind. In a bitter-sweet moment of relief, her expertise leads to the conclusion that the victim is not Booth, but his trouble-maker brother Jared, whom we haven’t seen since the fifth season when he got engaged. As Brennan is comforted by Angela about Booth’s still unknown whereabouts, we are allowed a glimpse at Booth’s ordeal for the first time as he tries to stop the bleeding from a gunshot wound in his stomach.
At the FBI, where Aubrey has taken over Booth’s office, a special task force is being created by he and Caroline in order to get to the bottom of Booth’s disappearance and his ties to the case. They are joined by Special Agent Grace Miller, who is convinced of Booth’s involvement in his brother’s murder based on his history of issues with authority and gambling addiction. Questioning Jared’s wife Padme, Brennan and Miller learn that Jared was in debt and a friend from the Navy, O’Donnell, was helping him get back on his feet – which is how Padme recieved many expensive gifts from Jared. However, O’Donnell refuses to say a bad word about Jared out of loyalty for “one of his guys” when confronted about Jared’s activities.
Meanwhile, Arastoo and Cam are both facing big decisions when it comes to each other. Cam considers Arastoo to be the best candidate as Brennan’s replacement, but at the same time has reservations about this promotion because she is in a relationship with him. Arastoo is ready to propose to Cam, but he is worried that his mistake identifying the body as Booth’s might have cost him her respect. Working together with Arastoo, Cam accidentally notices the box with the ring, however, the two of them quickly decide that it’s not the best timing to pop the question. As a compromise, Arastoo simply shows Cam the ring, which creates a highly amusing misunderstanding when Hodgins walks in.
New evidence transpires in the case, which points to Booth and Jared working in a team of five and Booth having a secret bank account to send Jared money. Moreover, the glass embedded in Jared’s skull leads the investigation to the house of an infamous criminal Masborian. There, a scene of a robbery-went-wrong transpires, in which Masborian was gunned down, and his safe emptied. However, the most upsetting discovery is that one of the major blood stains belongs to Booth, which means that wherever he is right now, his wound is severe and he needs medical attention. Back at the FBI headquarters, Caroline shares with Aubrey that Agent Miller has a secret – her partner has gone missing around the same time as Booth.
The episode ends with Booth, bleeding and in pain, but powering through. One of the robbers is concerned about his wound and suggests that he see a doctor, which gets vetoed by their leader – no one other than Jared’s Navy buddy O’Donnell. O’Donnell wonders if Booth is still loyal to them, and Booth’s face when he says “To the end” is not convincing, which gives us hope he is still one of the good guys.