'Bones' recap: Pops knows best (and now, about Club Jiggle)

Is it just me, or did this episode feel like a bit of filler? Yes, it’s always fun to see Brennan get giddy (for her) over investigating sexual fetishes, but they failed to make the “feeders and eaters” as compelling as the “horsey play” from Season 3. Getting to meet Booth’s grandfather Hank (guest star Ralph Waite) and having him try to play matchmaker for Booth and Brennan was sweet, but for this to be a proper Sweeps episode, Pops needed to die. There, I said it. (Note: I do realize that had Pops died at the end of this episode as written, it would have been too cliché. We’d have needed to meet him under different circumstances.)

The most interesting part of the hour, for me, was how Pops came to the realization that he needed to return to his retirement community instead of staying with Booth. He said it was because he was needed there for fishing and sex and because Booth’s appliances sucked, but do you think Brennan talked to Pops and told him that he needed more attention than Booth could provide — and that it would be hard for Booth to tell him that because he’d worry Pops would think he doesn’t love him? If there’s anyone who could have that conversation, it would be Brennan. I love that Pops got her and respected her “steel ovaries.” When B&B drove him home, he pulled her aside. He made sure she recalled her promise: She would tell Booth when the time was right that his abusive dad left because Pops had told him to get out, he didn’t deserve to be a father. And she’d be there to hold him, if he needed it. “He’s big and strong, but he’s gonna need someone. Everyone needs someone,” he told her. “Don’t be scared…. It all goes by so fast. You don’t want any regrets.” Brennan said she didn’t understand. “Yes, you do,” he told her. There’s no question Booth understood Pops’ parting words for him: “Now listen here,” he said gently patting Booth’s heart. “You remember, it’s all in there. Everything you need to know. [Looks at Brennan] You just do what it tells ya.” What it told him, apparently, was to compliment Brennan on her necklace. She said he’d seen it before. He said he hadn’t. Was that a sly hint that he was looking at her breasts for the first time?

The episode had some other tender moments, such as:

• Angela explaining to Brennan that Booth likes it when Pops calls him “Shrimp” because it makes him feel loved, and Brennan failing to hide a little smile when she told Angela the only nickname she’s ever had is “Bones,” from Booth.

• Clark finally tolerating personal conversation at work and saying that Booth is a good man for wanting to take in Pops. “I’m moved…  and now I’m not.” Clark’s grandfather never got to see what he became. Ah.

• Pops in a dance sandwich at Club Jiggle. Okay, not “tender,” but did you notice how when he first started to dance solo, it was a move Booth would totally do? Okay, maybe I’m glad Pops lived…

Would you like Hank to visit again and maybe use his Military Police background to go all Murder, She Wrote? Or do you anticipate the next time we see him being at his funeral?

Photo credit: Greg Gayne/FOX

Comments (49 total) Add your comment
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  • Kristen

    I would LOVE to see Hank again! What a cute old man! Loved the ep!

    • Monica

      I so love Hank and Booth! They so rocked!

      My favorite episode!

  • Lily

    This is random, but did anyone notice something weird about the camera work this episode? The first 15 minutes seemed off somehow.

    And yes, the episode felt like filler, which was especially disappointing considering how good last week’s episode was.

  • Jenny

    Booth’s struggle to do right by Pops really broke my heart.

    David and Ralph totally got that grandfather and grandson relationship to a T!

  • bonejonsing

    Thanks for validating my thoughts. As soon as Pops said to Booth, “I don’t want you to think I don’t love you” my mind went to Brennan. I wondered whether she had a talk with Hank behind the scenes.

  • Miranda

    quick correction for you.. it was Angela she was talking to about the nicknames.. not cam.

    That was one of my favorite scenes.

    • Mandi Bierly

      Thanks for the catch. My mind was already on to Cam’s scene with Clark.

  • PHD

    definitely filler…

    but still a quality episode and furthered character development.

    Heroes and Smallville should review this numerous times.

  • Sue

    I loved the episode, too. Bones combines graphic crime-solving and sweet, compelling characters in a way no other can. I think the necklace incident had less to do with where Booth looked and more to do with what he said, “I don’t think so”, just like Pops.
    I really hope we see more of Hank as well.

  • SweetsNotBrennan

    I figured it was Sweets that said something to Pops over their game playing. Sweets would know how to work it where everyone came out feeling ‘good’ about Pops going back to the retirement community.

  • jmag

    definitely filler. . .Booth is developing what with the brain tumor and and the aftermath of that and all; but Brennan is stagnant. Her character hasn’t moved much from the cerebral and literal interpretations of absolutely everything. How could she not know what Pops was talking about in the end? The denial is starting to grate on my nerves.

    • Zero II

      I don’t know; I think she’s making progress in the past few weeks. She’s a lot more sensitive to Booth’s emotions than she has been in the past, and come on, she KNEW what Pops was talking about. She just didn’t want to admit it to herself.

      • eel8

        I agree with Zero II, I have felt like Brennan has shown more growth than Booth. But that’s just me, because I also feel that she is the one Sweets and Gordon Gordon talked about being “aware” of her feelings. She’s trying to be more normal (for Booth, in my opinion) and be more compassionate (see: last night’s episode).

    • Dana

      I think her character has had huge growth over the past two seasons and is clearly still growing

  • DawninDenver

    I’m suspicious of Pops being such a saint. His son didn’t grow up to pound on his boy without learning it somewhere? Also, when will Hollywood learn that big gals aren’t constantly stuffing their faces with food? Did like that the girls were all so pretty and happy!

    • Sue

      Well Booth had to get His strong decent character from someone. Wasn’t his father a drinker? That can change even the most decent guy. Agree with zero and eel, you could see on Bones’ face she knew what Pops meant, because she knows it already. And I don’t think anyone talked to Pops–Booth must get his intuition somewhere as well.

      • Sally

        Did it say that Pops was his paternal grandfather? He could be Booth’s mom’s dad but I didn’t notice.

      • Sue

        Sally, I just assumed he was Booth’s paternal grandfather. I went to the Fox site and checked the ‘official’ recap and it says HANK BOOTH, so I guess he is. :)

      • Leslie

        When Hank was talking to Brennan, he definitely said that Booth’s father was his kid. So Hank threw out his own son because he was “hitting my grandson.” I think Hank was definitely Booth’s moral compass as he became a man. Booth told Brennan to remember that you always do things for family. Certainly getting rid of your own son in order to save your grandchildren, as Hank did, would be an example. Also, did you notice that Hank and Booth said almost the exact same thing? Booth told Brennan that he was considering a leave of absence to take care of Hank because he didn’t want his grandfather to think he didn’t love him. Then when Hank was explaining to Booth why he was going back to the retirement community, he started out by saying I don’t want you to think that I don’t love you but I have to go back. And my two cents is that Brennan didn’t talk to Hank; I think he reached that conclusion on his own to go back.

    • ellyn m.

      of course they were all so pretty, you don’t think an overweight female will be on tv without being pretty do you???? …did love the fact that Pops knew that big girls have a lot to offer – and I’m not just talking pounds

  • Katers

    I suppose I connected to this episode because my own father is considerably older and on his way to needed nursing home assistance. I help plan out his meds every week and often cook for him now. Every episode doesn’t have to be a killer mystery. To me, this episode’s strength was certainly personal character growth that nearly brought me to tears. When the quality of the character development is so strong, I could care less about the mysteries…this many seasons into a procedural, I think that is a notable feat.

  • Sarah

    I think Bones talked to him – there were just too many clues to suggest otherwise. I enjoyed the episode, particularly Brennan’s reaction when Hank was talking about Booth’s father beating him. Again, ED and DB are masters of the unspoken emotion. Hank was adorable and Brennan seems to really crave “family” even if she says otherwise. I would love to see a Booth generation episode with Parker, Booth, and Hank.

    • Liz

      That’s what I was thinking too! Why didn’t Booth take Parker to see his grand grandfather?? I’m sure Pops woud have loved to see him!

  • Poetic_line

    Not so much filler but a lovely jaunt into the heart.

    It wasn’t really about sexual fetishm as Hank Booth and his acceptance that the younger Booth loved him but couldn’t care for him as much as he needed.

    Also, about Brennan warming to Booth’s grandfather as soon as they met and her warming to him.

    And the necklace scene,it was a turning point that Booth was really looking at Brennan differently now.

    He may have seen that necklace but he never really looked at Brennan in that way as a potential lover.

  • JACKJack

    I really liked how the last ten minutes was like fast-paced science/figuring the case out: I liked that it was all at once rather than like slowly throughout the episode. It felt new and fresh for this show.

  • Lee

    I think Booth has definately looked at Bones as a potential lover before.

    DB has stated a number of times that this season Booth would have to “woo” Bones and after that talk with Pops at the end, I think the necklace compliment was the beginning of his efforts to woo her – for me, his smile after he said it, confirmed for me that he had just decided to follow where his heart is – and has been – telling him to go.

    Loved Pops – I want one just like him. The whole thing he did with his suspenders while dancing was just about the cutest thing I’ve seen in a long time.

    Yes, filler and it is clear that we will not be returning the style and tone of the first few seasons that were more serious and what I do miss are some of those moments at the end of the those episodes early on when Booth would get into Bones’ space and talk about love, why the pony fetish people were having crappy sex, giving her the small Jasper the pig, and many more. Oh well, the relationship is changing and they are clearly almost family now – and each are letting the other into their lives much more. I like that they are showing progression rather than having the way they relate to each remain stagnant – shucks, just like real life. Imagine that.

    • Cass

      Everything you said: Well put.

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