Do you remember that one time (or the few times) when Brennan stated she didn’t ever want kids of her own?
And then there was that brief moment in time when she wanted Booth’s baby. (It’s so brief it’s almost not worth mentioning.) And then she says she’s not good with kids.
For a while now, I’ve been thinking about Temperance Brennan and kids. Together. In the same sentence. Then as I looked at the evidence, I realized that Brennan is actually much better with kids than she thinks. Than anyone thinks.
I’ve chosen one moment from each season to show to you that Brennan is, in fact, good with kids. At least, she’s good with kids in her own way. So what do you say we take a brief look at the evidence, starting with season one.
Season One: The Boy in the Bush: Shawn Cook
We see a very vulnerable, very emotional Brennan in this episode. It’s actually rather impressive when you remember that this is the fifth episode of the series EVER. We get a glimpse of Brennan’s life in foster care and how that shaped who she is. We see how she reacts to Shawn Cook. She is open as she describes the foster system and her experiences. Shawn can relate and he throws his arms around her and sobs into her shoulder. Brennan just holds him close and lets him cry.
So maybe this wasn’t exactly the most positive way for her to relate to a child. But I think it’s a huge step in the growth that Brennan experiences throughout the series. Brennan isn’t one for physical affection (yet anyway- she hasn’t touched Booth’s arm or experienced a ‘guy hug’ at this point) so for her to so willingly accept a child’s hug is pretty monumental. Even if this moment isn’t what would normally be classified as a ‘good with kids’ moment, I still think it’s a big deal in the journey that is Temperance Brennan. What do you think?
Season Two: The Girl with the Curl: Dance class
Here’s a moment when Brennan is left alone with a group of little girls and she’s left to her own devices. She pulls out a picture of her on a dig and starts discussing anthropology. If any of those girls knew who she was they’d probably be dreaming about becoming the next Temperance Brennan.
She’s on the floor, sitting cross-legged, talking about how the little pageant girls have a Darwinian pressure they can’t possibly bear. She takes a chance to get down to their level, in her own way, to teach them something. And they respond to her in a relatively positive way. SIDENOTE: I think it is incredibly adorable when Booth comes in and lifts Brennan off the floor by her armpits.
And then the little girls moon over his big muscles. His deliciously big muscles… Ha ha. Sorry, got sidetracked right there. On to the next one!
Season Three: The Baby in the Bough: Andy
The Baby in the Bough was such a surprising episode for me. The interaction Brennan has with baby Andy was such a surprise. A pleasant surprise that is. She becomes guardian of a baby boy that no one wants. His mother is dead and his dad is a crook. Does that sound familiar to anyone?
Anyway, at first, Brennan is her usual stand-offish self. And then it seems, as with the other two scenarios, when she’s alone with Andy she warms up and starts to be more open. Take the phalanges moment in the car. She crawls over the front seat and she’s talks to the baby as she would an adult. And when Andy starts fussing, as in Girl with the Curl, Brennan is left to her own devices. Thus the phalanges. And it works. Andy stops fussing and he responds to Brennan and her phalanges.
By the end of the episode, we see how much Brennan (and Booth) really did connect with baby Andy. Brennan finally got a taste of baby-ness. Could this be what essentially spurred Brennan’s random baby-hungry phase in The Critic in the Cabernet? What do you think? Was it because she could see Booth’s reaction to “our little guy”?
Which came first? Brennan wanting a connection with Booth or wanting a baby…and Booth was a good option? Thoughts?
Season Four: Critic in the Cabernet: Baby
Remember that one time when Brennan wanted Booth’s baby? Oh, I said that already? Well, even with me mentioning it twice, it feels like we’ve discussed it more than the show has! Yeah, it’s safe to say I feel like that little storyline sort of fell into the water. But that’s not the point. This scene is so brief, but I thought it counted as a ‘good with kids’ moment so I included it.
Brennan actually offers to hold a baby. Of her own volition. That kind of blows me away. The previous examples have been situations that were thrust upon Brennan. This is the first time that she actually volunteered to interact with a child in any way, shape, or form.
As I said before, it’s a brief moment. There isn’t much interaction between Brennan and this baby. No phalanges or talking or anything super cutesy. It’s just Brennan, with this look on her face. Talk about cute! What is going through her mind at this exact moment, do you think? What is going on in BOOTH’s mind?
Season Five: The Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood: Parker
I know Parker has been in Brennan’s life since he entered the scene in The Man in the Fallout Shelter in season one. Despite the fact that he’s been around for awhile, we’ve never seen really good interaction between Parker and Brennan up until now.
Booth is so nervous about bringing up the topic of his love life with his son around. Brennan, ever pragmatic and level-headed, suggests Booth just ask Parker why he thinks Booth needs a girlfriend. Of course Booth, ever the prude (gentleman), really doesn’t want to talk about it. So Brennan asks instead. And Parker responds honestly and without any hesitation. It’s obvious that Brennan doesn’t intimidate or seem ‘cold’ to Parker.
This is just such a great scene. Booth, Brennan, and Parker sitting in the diner eating lunch after a long case. It’s obvious that Parker likes Brennan. He calls her awesome after all. Okay, okay. He calls her awesome after she gives him a key to her building so he can use her pool. But that is beside the point. The POINT is that Brennan was able to get him to open up and reveal why he wanted his dad to have a girlfriend. She was upfront, forthright, and honest with Parker, thus rendering her ‘awesome’ in his eyes. And I think she blew Booth away too. But it isn’t really hard for Brennan to blow Booth away, right? It’s sweet when he also calls her awesome.
Season Six: The Body and the Bounty: Prof. Bunsen Jude, the Science Dude’s TV show
Brennan is presented an opportunity to go on with Professor Bunsen Jude, the Science Dude , on his TV show. She says no at first but after a discussion with Booth where she basically states that she’s not good with kids and Booth argues by saying people can evolve, she starts to consider it. Angela helps by convincing Brennan that she has the chance to give little girls everywhere a dream. (That may not be verbatim or even what Angela said but that’s what I got out of it.) How can Brennan deny a chance to let children see how fun and cool science can be?
By the end of the episode, we have an opportunity to see Brennan totally out of her element. That’s not something that happens very often. And despite the ridiculous outfit, the kids are eating it up. Talk about a role model. She doesn’t have personal interaction with kids but she still does a great job at interacting with them. Oh and her outfit. What a corny and ridiculous outfit. But Brennan looks so cute and sweet in it as she does the song or slogan or whatever it is. And Booth can’t take his eyes off of her. I feel like this episode gives us a glimpse at the pre-100th episode Booth and it’s so fun. Okay, I’ve kind of gone off track again. The point is, here’s how I feel about it:
I know that there are a more examples throughout the series of Brennan interacting with kids. Take her step-nieces for example, or times with Parker, and what were those baby-Brennanite-girl-science scout-types? The Woodchucks? And I certainly could have gone into greater depth on some, if not all, of them. But I felt that these brief moments in the series were just great examples and showed how Brennan really is around kids, despite how she thinks she is around them. I think her biggest issue when it comes to interacting with kids is that she really doesn’t know how to take them. She’s repressed her own childhood memories in an effort to cope and focus on her work. This coping mechanism is what makes her so distant and cold around adults at times.
There are moments though, when we see the truly warm hearted person she is. Whether it’s being generous with her money, her time, or her expertise, she has her moments. The previous examples I gave are times when Brennan has been open and willing to show her vulnerability, whether she knows it or not.
So, in conclusion, I think Brennan is actually pretty good with kids. She may not feel like it but she has a warm and giving heart, but as Booth told her in The Critic in the Cabernet, she’s going to be a good mom (someday).
So what do you think? Do you think Brennan really is good with kids? Or are these moments that we’re given to settle our minds over Temperance Brennan’s outward coldness? Do you, like me (and like Seels!) REALLY want to see this storyline developed? What’s your opinion? What do you think is Booth’s opinion?
Discuss, discuss, discuss!