Tuesday, April 21, 2009

'Bones' Gets Lost in Translation


I love me some funny Bones! And yet, I also love it when this show does a 180 and tackles a serious, emotional story line. This time, the show went comical to hilarious results. Here's a breakdown with this week's Good, Bad and Ugly.

The entire freakin' hour! Seriously, there is no "Bad" or "Ugly" this week. I LOVED this episode. It had me laughing out loud, laughing so hard I had tears running down my face ("we can't see him like this" "Like What?" "Hitler."), and laughing so hard I had to pause it several times. The whole thing had a Weekend at Bernie's feel to it with Booth and Bones stealing borrowing that body from the wake and then propping him up in the car to make him look alive for the ride back to the Jeffersonian. It was completely ridiculous, but that's what made it so darn funny. And then they managed to drag everyone else into it making the entire story even funnier. The funniest part of the episode, though, was a tie between Booth and Bones referring to murder with the key word "translation" (as in, it looks as though this guy was actually translated - HILARIOUS!) and Angela telling the family that they couldn't view the body because of a mortuary issue that had him looking like Hitler. So freakin' funny!

I would be remiss with the PTR readers if I did not discuss Brennan's continued cluelessness when it comes to issues related to the human condition. I'm kinda torn about this character flaw. On the one hand, I find it very unrealistic that she has no idea how to conduct herself at a wake and needs coaching just to relate to her fellow human beings. That's some serious emotional detachment issues! But on the other, I find that it leads to some really funny moments between her and Booth. Therefore, I'm not sure if I want the show to transform the character to a more human-like state. I suppose they could tone it down a bit, after all, it would be completely within the realm of plausibility that she would evolve as a character and that her continued interaction with Booth would be a strong catalyst and perpetual influence in the slow transformation. That could work for me. In the meantime, I guess I'll just continue to laugh and shake my head at the same time. I wonder if that's easier than patting your head and rubbing your tummy at the same time?

Don't forget to catch another episode of Bones on its regular night -- this Thursday on Fox. If you missed last night's episode ("The Double Death of the Dearly Departed"), check it out for free at Hulu.com.


John said...

I generally like the humor on the series, but this episode left me cold. It was slapstick on what is supposed to be a serious crime show, with humor, and not a Chevy Chase movie.

As a quibble, there is no way Brennan could have detected broken ribs while touching the corpse to simply readjust the rose – unless she was planning on nailing it in place.

I agree with your comments on Bones’ inability to relate to humans. She had to have been to funerals before. And she goes on endlessly about the customs of other cultures and does so without condemnation. American customs she doesn’t subscribe to she actively opposes. At her age, if she is still unable to connect with people and show any tolerance for their beliefs and customs at her age, I actually doubt she could ever significantly change. If this were the first season of the show, you could posit that as she reconnects with her father (somewhat) and develops a surrogate family at the Jefferson and FBI she would begin to understand people and accept them for who they are, even if they don’t act like she wants them to. Now it is hard to believe she can change.

RichE said...

This episode definitely played up the slapstick side more than normal but I have to disagree with "supposed to be a serious crime show" John. Bones is clearly not a comedy but it has always had a more humourous side than the CSIs and Cold Cases of this world. Can you imagine Lilly and gang trying something like that? I'd like to see it but I think it would go down badly with fans.

Bones achieves a great balance between the science, the case and the characters and does so with quite a lot of humour. It is why it's one of the most entertaining shows out there.

It was a great fun episode that was verging on silly, but they can get away with this every so often.

I'm a bit puzzled by Brennan's grave-side issues as well, they dealt with that back when they visited her mother's grave. I guess they can't allow her to evolve too much or they'd loose a key component of the character, her relationships and the humour.


John said...

By serious I didn't mean Criminal Minds/CSI serious, but it is not supposed to be Psych or Monk either (and I like both, especially Psych). This episode was really just a comedy show, with a murder as a pretext. Some shows are set up that way and you like them or not, but this series is normally treats murder as a serious thing and not a set up for a series of gags. When Psych makes light of a muuurder, it works because the show is all about the funny and the characters and takes nothing seriously, except friendship and family.

In the “Bones” universe I don’t think this level of humor works.