Bones Theory

Girl, Eventually


I know what it’s like to want to die. How it hurts to smile. How you try to fit in but you can’t.

~~Girl, Interrupted~~


Okay, before we get started today, I just want to mention two things.

1.)    Bones Theory readers are smart. Like…really smart. Everyone here is so nice also. Nice and funny and smart. I’m just amazed at it every single day. Thank you, thank you, thank you each one, for sharing your heart AND YOUR BRAIN here at BT. I find it very inspiring. To those who have commented to me privately that you never feel like you have anything to add to the comments…to that, I say…bring it on! Don’t worry about that! What you have to offer…it’s you! We want to hear it; I promise. Even if you agree with each person…well, heck, we want to hear that too. Also, likewise, to those of you who do not speak English as your first or ‘native’ language, please do not apologize for your English. I think it’s wonderful to hear from BONES fans from all over the world, and I guarantee that your English is 1000 times better than my attempt to speak your language. I promise, promise, promise.

Okay, having said all of that, my next point is just a bit snarky, though it might not even apply to BT readers/ writers/ commenters at all, and that is this.

2.)    I do love everyone; I promise. But I was just thinking the other day that one nice thing about this season is that people are generally being a LOT nicer toward Brennan, and I find that very refreshing. I remember the days where she was called cold and insensitive toward Booth’s (seemingly) overt advances of love and devotion. When he mentioned love; she’d scoff and ridicule at times (not always, but sometimes). When he says he gets nervous when the two of them are around super smart people, she says not to worry, because she knows how stupid he is. Haha, I loved that, in season four, but Brennan got a lot of heat for that, for not falling into Booth’s completely available arms. This isn’t a reprimand or ANYTHING like that; like I said before, I think BT readers and commenters have got it going on in the rational department; I’m just saying I think it’s always worth making an effort to sort of extend as much good grace toward Booth as we are extending toward Brennan this season. Does that make sense?

Okay, off my high horse now, and back down onto the ground. And the weather is nice down here and perfect for talking about our fave lady, Dr. Temperance Brennan. Specifically, we’ll talk about her in the context of ‘eventually’ and ‘everything’. We’ll talk about Booth too, probably on Wednesday, but for today, it’s Brennan. Let’s do this thing!

Is it greedy to want to see even MORE about Brennan before she met Booth? Don’t get me wrong; I’m very thankful to that pre-pilot  canon peek we got into B&B in the 100th episode. But I find that it also raises some questions. She wanted to get out of the lab; we can see that by the pilot. And she DID get out of the lab, on her expeditions and digs, etc. But what do you think about all of that…was she feeling edgy before she met Booth? Or was she fairly satisfied with her life, both personally and professionally? Is Booth the cause or the effect, do you think?

So then, that raises the question…who is the real Temperance Brennan?

Not that any of us can maybe say who the real ‘us’ is. And it can change over time. But I sort of wonder about Brennan. We have somewhat of an idea what she was like when she was 17, 22 maybe, etc. But what about when she was 13? What about when she certainly would have her own personality, but not any issues of abandonment? In her memories, she remembers her family very fondly.

The picture that is in the file she gives to Booth (in season one) is very sweet, very optimistic. Right?

Does that girl still exist? What is Brennan optimistic about?

How does that girl stay optimistic?


I think this part of Brennan is how she and Angela are friends. Brennan can recognize beauty…it just might be in ways that are different than other people. She sees beauty in 2+2=4; she sees beauty in the circulatory system, and she is amazed by Angela’s work in the lab. Angela helps her to keep in mind that it’s also important to share that beauty…whether it’s a gorgeous sunset with someone you care about or something else. Brennan wants to experience those things.

Right? So then…what is it that sort of puts her on edge about it, though? Is it only when Max is involved? Remember in season four, The Bone that Blew, when Max is around, teaching the children at the lab?

MAX: Science Squad, meet my daughter. The world famous anthropologist, Temperance BRENNAN: . Of course, I taught her everything she knows.

BRENNAN: Actually, I went to college. I have multiple degrees.

MAX: Well, tell the uh, kids a little something about refraction.

BRENNAN:  Snell’s Law states that the angle of incidence is related to the angle of refraction, where V equals the wave velocities through the respective media and N equals…

MAX: Nifty, that’s very nifty. But wha-what was your favorite example when you were a kid?

BRENNAN: Rainbows.

CHILD: Rainbows! I love rainbows!

MAX: Yeah, rainbows. She used to make me drive her all the way across town, the other side of the rainbow. She didn’t believe that light came out of the back of a raindrop. Yeah. So, are there any questions for our, uh, scientist?

Later on in that episode, Brennan and Max are talking and Sweets joins them, making it very clear why HE thinks Brennan doesn’t want Max to work at the Jeffersonian:

SWEETS: Well, at the time you abandoned your daughter, 15 years ago, you were a well-regarded science teacher. Now…here you are, basically in the same situation. And subconsciously, she doesn’t want to risk feeling that sense of abandonment and bereavement again.

MAX: Boy, that is such a load of crap. (to BRENNAN) You are far too rational for that.

BRENNAN: Exactly.

What do you think about all of this? Can you imagine a scenario in which Brennan, feeling disappointed after a junior high school dance or something, comes home. Max and Christine notice, and Max tells her “Don’t worry about it baby; you’re far too rational for that.” At which point Brennan nods and understands and sees that being rational is the key to not getting hurt at junior high dances. Christine may not agree, but she might not say anything.

I’m being COMPLETELY fictional, which would annoy Brennan to the maximum…but I just wonder what you think. What parts of the Brennan that we see now…what parts of those are who she has always been? Has she always been curious? Has she always been determined? Has she always been not quite up to date on current events past the Industrial Revolution (haha! Remember when she told Booth that in episode 100? SO FUNNY!). Has she always (like our original quote) not quite been able to fit in? Because of her brain, her circumstances, her vocabulary, her curiosity?

What about this Brennan?

There are so many MORE examples of her wearing her metaphorical heart on her sleeve, whether she’s wearing a Jeffersonian lab coat or not. In fact, it would take another watch through all of the episodes, but there might be MORE of those moments than moments in which she uses rationality as  a shield. What do you think?

Not to boil HER down to an anthropological inevitability, but if she hadn’t met Booth…where would she be? Would she have had the journey she’s had without him? Okay, okay…obviously not the exact same journey, but you know what I mean. Was she already itching to get out of the lab before she met him? If so, does that change her ‘eventually’?

She has faced pain and hardship and she’s beautiful in her rationality at times. But…what’s the end result? What’s the eventually? And what does ‘everything’ entail for her? Has that definition changed since the pilot episode, or was it always there…just waiting to be unlocked?

I don’t know for sure; I’m curious to know what you think. Did she always find pleasure in simple jokes (Hay…is for horses!)? Did she just in the most recent years consider wanting a child, or just now confess it? Did she only fantasize about a life with Booth when she was in Maluku, or is that something that’s been happening since this?


We’re talking about Brennan here…her innate desires and wishes, but I think Booth plays a big part in that as well. Why did she write about a single life shared? I remember after the season four finale, I felt concern and uneasiness at the idea that there would or could ever be a situation in which Brennan had to ask Booth to confirm HIS love for her? In what universe, right? But now, I can see that we’re headed in that direction (another grudging salute to End in the Beginning! Ha…by the end of this journey, I’ll probably love that freaking episode or something!)…


Is Brennan’s eventually the confidence she has in her own love for Booth? Is that her journey? To love and be loved? She can still be herself, still love Booth and love science at the same time, right? Can she be in love and rational at the same time. This is part of her conclusion…come on, it’s gotta be, right? She’s not going to find God and get married; I don’t think that would be in character at all. So there has to be some sort of ‘eventually’ in store for her.

What is that? What is her everything, and what is her eventually? AND to throw another wrench into it…do you think she’s already hit ‘eventually’? Has Booth? Were their confessions in the 100th and DitP their ‘eventually’ moments? The OTHER one just wasn’t ready at the right time?

Thoughts from you?

Peace, Love & Bones



40 thoughts on “Girl, Eventually

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  2. This is a tough one. We know that Brennan was a lonely child in high school. She told Angela that sometimes the only word she said all day was Polo (in answer to Russ’s Marco). Since this was when her family was still together we can already see the fairly friendless Temperance. She had friends when she was 9 or so because Brennan told Booth that she and her friends were crazy about Cyndi Lauper and yet by the time high school came along her only friend was the janitor. The rest of the kids considered her creepy. Whether her parents had been in her life of not, I think she was already on a solitary road. Max appears to be very smart also and he told Brennan that the only family he had was his wife and kids. Sometimes when I watch the episodes with Max and see the cold logic he portrays, I can see Brennan. Max and Brennan are really the same side of the coin. I think that worries Brennan in the dark of the night. Max is solitary and so is Brennan. Both are drawn to science. Max has killed to protect his own and we know that Brennan can do the same.

    I think before Booth showed up the second go round, Brennan had been thinking about going into the field. She black mailed him to force him to work with her on cases in the field. Brennan is very deliberate and probably had already come to the conclusion that she liked working away from the Jeffersonian so when Booth came back and wanted to work with her again she made sure that happened.

    We know that she is not the cold fish some think. She was so happy when Angela asked her to be the matron of honor at her wedding. She wants to participate in normal life but I don’t think is knows how. She is so smart when it comes to science; but, though she is not completely clueless, she is insular.

    I think her life plan before meeting Booth was to work with old bones. After meeting Booth the first time, she wrote her first book. We have heard enough times to know that Booth is the FBI agent in her book. Even though the first go around with Booth was disappointing for her she thought about the work she could do so solve murders (remember she probably would have liked to solve her parents murder at that time) so when Booth came back this was her chance. I don’t know if she would have found a chance to work with the FBI without Booth but I think Booth presented with the opportunity she needed and wanted.

  3. I think Brennan needed Booth in her life to show her that the world out side of the lab and out side of her rationality has a place to her too.Booth made Brennan remember that she’s still that little girl was abandoned by her parents. She just put that Brennan kept in a closet just waiting to something special in her life to make her little by little want be that Brennan again. And this something special in her life is Booth. He shown her that she can be the girl again and can continue be the smart and fearless Brennan that Booth known and learn to love.The love Brennan feel for Booth made her want be this other Brennan now more than ever she want be with him and love him to be that girl again ans be loved for him too.

  4. I am so excited. I can’t believe I’m the first one to bring up this detail!

    It was Angela, not Booth who made Brennan want to “live wider,” shall we say. Booth was who/what made it possible. I am roughly quoting Hodgins here, but I’m not sure which ep it was. Brennan saw how Angela lived and wanted a life more like that. Then Booth came along and gave her the opportunity.

    About being friends with the janitor: didn’t that come after the abandonment?

    I’ll stop here to ensure that I get my detail up before anyone else. ;-D

    • We know that Brennan was in high school (age 15) when she was abandoned. She told Angela that sometimes the only word she said all day was Polo, which implys that she didn’t have many (or any) friends. We don’t know that the janitor came after the abandonment. We just know he was her friend in high school. I know in one episode, Brennan said that her grandfather got her out of the foster system and in another episode she said she didn’t know her grandparents, so I don’t know if she went to two different high schools or the same one before and after abandonment. I wish they would explain that a little better.

      • The janitor was part of the high school reunion story; reunions are usually tied to graduation classes. So the janitor was part of her last year or two in high school. Given she was a foster kid who we know was in multiple homes and schools, she wouldn’t have known him until after her family was gone and she was on her own. Or that’s how I’ve put the pieces together.

  5. In regards to Booth having to “prove” his love. When B&B finally happens, I don’t think that it will be Booth doing something wrong that makes him have to prove his love to her..I just think that Booth has spent the last 6 years proving that love exists, and it will become their “thing”. Brennan always needs “proof”..that’s who she is and I don’t see being in a loving relationship changing that. I think we all need, on some level, proof that we are loved, on a daily basis. That line in The End in the Beginning was just so sweet, and loving from her that I didn’t take that in a negative way. OH, we have a moment coming up here soon, that he will have to prove his love to her, but once they are past that, any time she asks for the proof I think is just the cherry on top.

    I, personally, don’t think their confessions in the 100th and DitP were their eventually…because they barely scratched the surface of their feelings. Their “eventually” will come when they are BOTH ready and are in the moment and not as a result of outside emotional pressures.

    You made a statement about her not finding God and getting married…I disagree, not with the God part, but with the marriage part. I do see her changing her beliefs in that arena…for the longest time it was an “antiquated ritual” but then she tells her cousin Margaret in Season 5 that she needed a reason to get married, and I believe she will find that reason…in Booth.

    • I had wanted to say something to this effect about the “do you love me” in EitB not being a real question as to whether Booth loves her. I saw it more as a way of asking if he wants to make love without coming out and asking that. Like crzy4bones, it’s a kind of game they play with each other, a love game perhaps.

  6. I know it’s not the main point of this post but I loved that you raised the question about for how long has Brennan been fantasying about a life with Booth. Because, for me, she has been doing it for a LONG time, hence the book on The End in the Beginning. And when she actually said it out loud on The Couple in the Cave – in the presence of Sweets, I must emphasize – I actually squeed and also felt her pain. I was happy because she overcame so much to confess something like that and I was also really touched by her confession because she must have went though a psychological hell having to deal with all those feelings without having anyone around to explain those things to her (“Sometimes people need to explain things to me,” this line has been crossing my mind quite frequently while watching the show). I recognize it was good for her and that she somehow needed it but it wasn’t easy at all. After all of what they (Brennan and Booth) have been trough at that point, she still dreamed of a life with him. She still does. And, in some way, at the beginning of the season, she confessed it without using a book to do it so and way before The Doctor in the Photo.

    I can see that girl on many episodes, to cite a few, A Night at the Bones Museum, Double Trouble in Panhandle, The Wannabe in the Weeds, The Body and the Bounty, The X in the File… I like to think (and I believe) that she was a girl (almost – because after all she’s Temperance Brennan haha) like any other girl, I mean, when it comes to dreams and boys (Smurfette anyone?) she was a normal girl who from day to night had to grow up and focus on surviving and standing up for herself and by consequence that girls became lost someplace deep within her and I just love to watch she rediscovering/manifesting/rescuing that inner girl from years ago. And her friends have a huge role on it.

    I don’t know if I made any sense to you but in my mind it’s pretty clear. lol

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us once again! 🙂

  7. Wow! so many questions…so much to think about! I think Brennan was uncomfortable with Max in the lab because it was an invasion of her space, her comfort zone. She needs the lab to feel validated as a successful, smart contributor to society. When Max invades it, it makes her wonder if even that part of her life that she knows to be true, will always be so. That ep was so sweet — Booth accepting her family, even letting Max work with Parker. I do think her friendship with Angela took some effort on Brennan’s part to establish. She sees Angela’s genius working well with her free-spirit and she knows that she needs help in the free-spirit area. I feel so sad for Brennan when I think of her childhood. I think she always had some walls up and when she was abandoned those walls became more impenetrable. But deep down she was always looking for someone who could accept her and when she found Booth she knew that he could. I think that is why she didn’t want to spoil their budding relationship in the 100th.

  8. regarding Brennan & high school…where it gets tricky is Andy the lacrosse captain turned shop teacher. He is at the reunion (like Mr. Buxley and others) and yet, in season three, Brennan tells Booth that Andy got her the brainy smurf in Secret Santa AND when Booth laughs at her, she later tells him that the only person who knew about that was her mother. So, at some point…Andy was a classmate before her parents left. Andy could have moved schools, I guess, but I doubt it. That’s one of those things I chalk up to general BONES bullcrap.

    • I always thought she could have ended up back there (she mentioned going back to an old school when she talked with Sean in Boy in the Bush) after a while, or even multiple times. *shrug*

    • I think that these are the kinds of details that are best attributed to “general BONES bullcrap” — details from early episodes that they probably never thought they’d have to worry about. Boy in the Bush (?) is very, very early. They weren’t thinking about sending them to her high school reunion at the end of season 5 yet.

      • Of course they didn’t know back then, but when they did this episode they were supposed to know what they did before, after all they remembered Andy, why not remember all of his story?

    • There are many time lines that don’t seem to match up. However, I interpret her high school as freshman year with the Yellow Jackets where Andy gave her the brainy smurf, then switched schools while in foster care and then maybe her grandfather got her and brought her back to graduate from the Yellow Jackets school where Death of the Queen Bee takes place. When she says her mom was the only one who knew about the brainy smurf, I think she means the only one that she shared that with (that mattered to her). This type of time line would support that she had few if any friends.

  9. Ahhhh, My favorite topic, Brennan! (But don’t worry, that doesn’t mean that I hate or blame Booth for anything)
    Brennan is just such an interesting character. There are many geniuses that have characteristics bordering on asperger symptoms, so I don’t believe that her social/emotional awkwardness is just a result of her past ‘misfortunes’. Therefore I also don’t believe that she is ever going to be able to just completely overcome that, get (over) it, and suddenly understand what everyone means or what she needs to do/say in some situations. You can’t teach a duck to whistle.
    And that to me is the magic of Brennan: That the things she doesn’t get make the things (and moments) she does get SO much more special.

    About Brennans childhood I have this Image in my head that is very sentimental (scary territory for us North Sea folk 🙂 )and based on conjecture. I imagine a ‘con couple’ with a young son who is just as peoplesmart and socially insightfull as they are. And then they suddenly get a daughter who is super intelligent but also helpless in a way, and who has a kind of special innocence about her, and they realize their child(ren)s need for protection, so they make some changes.

    I think Max was probably a good father in general, but in a way he is also a very hard and desensitized man, so I’m not sure if he was the kind of father that a socially challenged child needs.
    We don’t know much about Christine Brennan. Brennan once said (I forgot the episode) that she has very few real memories about her mother, which has always seemed strange to me. However in “The Boy in the Time Capsule” she says that the only person who knew about the embarrassing Smurf incident was her mother, which together with her lack of friends leads me to believe that her mother was much more important to her than she cares to admit.

    I love that scene where she says she knows exactly how stupid he is. People who think she meant to be mean there, really don’t get her. The thing that worries me though is that there have been moments where I wondered if Booth really got her. There are times when Brennan is saying something in an awkward and sincere way that is totally uncalled for but also kind of sweet and funny, but sometimes Booth just gets annoyed or kind of brushes her of. It makes me wonder if he takes her too seriousy, or not serious enough. And I don’t mean that Booth should always be understanding or should never call her on saying something inappropriate, but he just comes across as being a bit snarky sometimes. But maybe that’s his way of keeping a little distance from her.

    I think being in a steady relationship is something that Brennan is going to have to learn. Probably with trial an error but a lot of determination. And that is one of the big reasons I don’t want this show to stop with them getting together.

    • A shrink I know, who has done some forensic anthropological work and is a Bones fan to boot, puts Brennan on the very, very, very slight end of the autism spectrum. Not Asperger’s, but some very, very, very limited form of autism. She puts Zach much farther into the autism spectrum.

    • The thing is I wouldn’t put past the writers to suddenly tell us one day that Brennan is not really a genius after all to shake things up…
      As for how was her mother, in judas Max told her that Brennan and he always saw the world in black and white unlike her mother ans Russ.

  10. Brennan as a child was curious. I could see her asking questions over and over until an answer was given that made her questions understandable to her. Her dad loved her and would be willing to prove to her that what she was saying was wrong, or it was right. I think as a child she was secure in her families love but was shy, awkward and timid around those outside her family. As a child with both her parents with her she was happy and secure.

    When they left and her brother abandoned her she had no one to make her feel safe. Foster care made her feel lonely. School was not fun for her. While she loved to learn the atmosphere must have been horrrible for her each day. She was misunderstood and picked on. She built up walls and borders around herself to help keep from feeling emotionally battered each and everyday. I think these walls carried over into her college days because there still was no one she could turn to talk to. It is a learned behavior that got her through the worst time in her life and she isn’t willing to give it up.

    Brennan doesn’t trust people in general because those who were suppose to be trustworthy failed her. She has come to realize that the only one she can trust 100% is herself. Opening up and trusting again has been difficult and hard for Brennan. She knows what it feels like to lose those she loves. She gives of herself but only when she can assure herself that the walls she has are high enough to protect herself from further heartache and pain. When she opened herself up to Booth I believe she knew what his answer was going to be. She was willing to let him know how she felt because she felt she could handle his answer whatever it was.

    Brennan knows who she is and what she is now able to handle as far as emotional feelings are concerned. What she has a hard time doing is expressing them clearly and allowing people to really get to know and understand her as a person with needs and feeling, and looking past Dr. Temperance Brennan the scientific cold and unfeeling anthropologist.

  11. My little sister and I were talking one night, and I asked her “My two favorite Brennan moments are when she’s so excited about getting cookies from Micah in Doctor in the Photo and when she tells Booth she’s going to yell kidnap out the window. Why?” My sister’s response was “because that’s the real Brennan.” I think my sister is right. Not that what we see isn’t the real Brennan, but I think in certain episodes (Night at the Bones Museum and Doctor in the Photo especially), we see Brennan’s guards down, and that’s when her inner light really shines.

    I think Brennan had the expected eventually (before she met Angela) of continuing on with her work in ancient remains. When she met Angela, she probably thought a bit more about current cases, and maybe had an eventually of working those cases. Then Booth entered her life, and here she is, given the chance to satisfy her curiosity (with a really good-looking guy to boot). Brennan’s someone I peg for being an innately curious person. To her, following Booth around could be like an anthropological study. Maybe her expected eventually changes a bit to definitely include contemporary cases. They fight, and soon she ends up going to Guatemala, looking at not-so-long-ago victims. Then, at the thirteen months minus a week mark, he picks her up from the airport. Talk about a continuing eventually. I think the way she handled Booth says that she knew that he would try to contact her again. And that she wanted to work with him (with a little pushing away, first, but that could have been a test to see how serious he was). I think her idea of her eventually is still focused on what she is doing now — she is still doing what she has planned. I think she wants it to change, and has for a little while, but I don’t think she knows what direction she wants it to change in, exactly (other than being with Booth, which I think she now accepts as a possibility).

    I think eventually for Brennan will mean being able to work on what she wants to, to feel free to make her own decisions, to feel free to feel, and to trust that the people she relies on won’t leave. I believe that without this foundation, a relationship with Booth would not hold. I think her everything means Booth in the picture. It also means her lab and her friends in the lab in the picture. I don’t know about everything else — that’s why I watch the show, not for the eventually, because I know that it will happen, but a) how she reaches it and b) what “everything” entails.

  12. Wow, so many questions, so little time! LOL

    No idea where to start, so i’m gonna jump around a bit. That’s just how i roll 😉

    First off i have to say in the 100th, i think BOTH Brennan and Booth were ready. (I know my good friend Ryn will disagree with me…but she almosty always does. That’s just how we roll! LOL). I think Brennan was ready…i just didn’t think she realised she was. I have MANY issues with the 100th…like, a truckload. And one of them is Booth’s…approach to it, and his reaction to Sweets ‘dare’. I know some believe she would have had the same response regardless of how he approached her, and some believe Booth ALWAYS planned on asking her and Sweets had almost nothing to do with it.

    But i disagree on both. We all know from past episodes that how you approach Brennan is VITALLY important. Two people can ask her the same question and get two different answers depending on how they ask. And as for Booth, to me his ‘declaration’ was pure spur of the moment. Because honestly…if THAT was the speech he ‘planned’ then he’s a complete idiot. And i don’t believe he’s an idiot, ergo he didn’t plan it 😉

    Sorry, got sidetracked.

    Anyway, as for Brennan’s journey and it’s relation to Booth.

    I think she would have had some form of journey without Booth. It was clear she was anxious to be out of the Lab, and i think she’d have made it without him. Maybe not in the same way, but something would have happened.

    I also think she’d have had a degree of emotional growth without him too, but not to the extent she has. I think Angela would have eased her out of her shell slowly but surely, even if it took her 20 years! LOL

    The thing that makes my head spin though, if i think about it too often, is what would have happened with Max? I mean, my understanding was that Booth’s poking and prodding on his days off is the reason everything kinda happened. Right? I mean, she certaintly wouldn’t have seen Russ as Booth is the reason he turned back up.

    But even if i totally made that up about Max, if he’d have turned up anyway would she have given him the chance? Would Angela have been enough to talk her into letting her father back in? Or would Brennan have lost out on building a relationship with him, and would Max have missed out on knowing his daughter?

    I don’t know….i kinda think she wouldn’t have let him in and that breaks my heart.

    ……………………….ok, i’ll be honest………..i started this 2 hours a go and got distracted. I now have no idea what questions i was even trying to answer! LOL

    I think i’ll just leave it here…otherwise it could all go horribly wrong!

    • I agree that Booth’s approach left a lot to be desired. If it was planned, it had to have been after his coma, and got to the point he thought he was sure about his feelings. I honestly don’t know what it is that Brennan needed to hear or how she needed to hear it. I used to laugh when she says “Your evidence is anecdotal,” because only Brennan would say something like in such an emotional moment. But then, when I really thought about it, I agreed. Brennan doesn’t just need to know why relationships in general work out (the guy knowing), she needs to know specifically why a relationship between the two of them could/would work. She may be clueless sometimes, but she is painfully aware of her shortcomings, weaknesses, her background and the emotional baggage it all entails. She thinks that all she has going for her is that she’s “beautiful and very intelligent.” And after being hurt so many times and so many failed relationships, why should she believe that a romantic relationship where she is involved is a good idea? I can really understand why she thought saying no to Booth was the logical choice, no matter how she felt.

      I wish Booth had given her time to make a decision, but even if he didn’t, I wish Brennan would have asked for it. I wish Brennan would open her eyes to see how her friends value and love her for who she is, beyond her professional success. I wish Booth would have brought up evidence of her open heart to help her see that she is capable of giving love and she is worthy of receiving it.

  13. I have so much love for Brennan so I really appreciate this analysis and everyone’s comments. I think Brennan’s always been the same core person, someone who’s grounded in science and reason and of course, her views on love and relationships have been affected by childhood experiences. I don’t think that Booth has outright changed her, but he’s been a big part of making her see things in a different light and be open to being part of a family and open to love. In the End in the Beginning, one of my favorite parts is when Booth asks Bren if she’s having doubts and she replies, not about anything important and to find out in the end of the episode that Brennan wrote it is huge! It shows that sure, there are doubts in everything, but so long as it’s about the small stuff, well, that relationship is pretty solid.

    I don’t like the idea that Booth and Brennan have missed their moment. There’s a conversation that Angela and Brennan have in Season 1, that nothing in the universe happens once and she’ll get another chance. Plus, it’s from Brennan’s brain not her heart, so even better! I’m sure I’ll appreciate that more when “eventually” happens.

  14. Firstly Seels, thanks for the the thanks. We are using our brains and being rational here because in some ways, it’s the only place we can be. I’m sure I’m not the only one who was looking for some place to talk about Bones without ‘feeling’ as much. The barrage of anti HH/Booth/Bones/writers/etc stuff that’s out there makes this a haven, and I know I speak on behalf of the other regular readers when I say ‘Thank YOU’. Your dedication to this site and this perspective of the show makes us want to join in more. Miss one day and we’re likely to miss a lightbulb moment 🙂


    I think that the real Brennan knows about love, and wants love, and sees beauty in rainbows but she has been burnt too many times – starting from when her parents left. Without Booth, she would have been happy to be alone – live a life of study and history and casual enough relationships. But he changed that….made her see that she can dream of more. She can’t go back now to her ‘before’. What we are going to see from this week is how she deals with FEELING. She could move on too. But then that wouldn’t be much fun for us…

    I don’t think that B&B have reached their eventually yet. When they each declared their love, it was personal, and a risk that they each needed to take at the time that they took it. But they were thinking more about themselves than the other. There was a desperation that each had. I think that the eventually will come when they put the other first – are REALLY prepared to let them go. A bit like the ‘If you love someone set them free’ idea. When they are happy and complete without needing the other, than wanting and getting the other will make them a whole, and give them the ‘everything’ that we have been talking about.

    I know that in some ways it seems we are already seeing this, but Brennan was not happy to let Booth move on, and Booth’s moving on was self preservation. He is not happy not having Brennan. I can’t see these two as a ‘can’t live without you’ couple – even though the romantic in me likes to think so. A strong Brennan and Booth, who want to be together holds more impact for me. So I guess that’s what my eventually is. And they’ll get it as a couple just after they get it as individuals.

  15. First, I want to thak you for all those compliments for us! You’re so sweet! Specially that part for us non-native speakers… you make it easier to comment without beeing afraid about having too many mistakes. Thank you! It’s truly refreshing having a place with no spoilers (altough I sometimes read them) that analyses with a “brain” perspective our favorite show… full of interesting topics, nice (and non-hater) people that are always here to take a break of our own lives.
    Now, lets get to the topic! Brennan’s “eventually”: I believe her eventually it’s when she can live in love, beeing loved not only by Booth, but for her family and friends, without letting aside her own love for science and rational things. And I think she understood that (her own desire of beeing happy and complete) when she wrote that book in tEitB in wich she imagined how could her life be if she reunited that two parts.
    And for the other questions, I really don’t know exactly the meaning of “eventually” -it changes from person to person- but I do think both Brennan and Booth at least realized on tDitP and the 100th what they both wanted from that reltionship, altough neither of them was repared for that confession at that time. I hope they will do somethig about it (now that they know “everything”) and not just to keep quiet and pretend nothing happened. I believe that the only condition for them to reach their “eventually” its to come to terms with their own feelings and the other’s feelings as well.

  16. I have a question regarding Brennan in foster care. Does her being placed in foster care necessarily mean she was move to a different town? Could she have been placed with different families but stayed in the same town? In elementary school, a girl I went to school with was placed with a foster family but remained in the same town and school. Couldn’t this have been the same situation for Brennan? I think she was moved around within the same town but to different foster homes.

  17. Interesting thoughts! After seeing the 100th my thoughts were that demanding she be a part of every part of Booth’s work had more to do with being with Booth. Can’t say if it was completely conscious or not, but it seemed to me that she was interested in Booth immediately. She wanted to impress him – the way a student would a professor, which was one of most significant relationships she’d had at the time. When she ran from Booth that night, I don’t feel she thought she that there wasn’t going to be another opportunity to sleep with Booth. She was smiling at him in the cab; she didn’t look fearful or relieved. The way she left was playful and teasing. Also, her answer to WHY they weren’t sleeping together was “tequllia” not you’re too serious, or I changed my mind. Brennan being Brennan, if she HAD changed her mind about wanting to sleep with him, she would have said so. (Yes, there’s a point to this.)

    The next day Booth strides into the lab and informs her and Zach are back on the case. I don’t have screen-capture ability, but if you go back and look at Brennan’s face when she first sees him come in and then see it when Booth says they are back on the case, they are vastly different, She was HAPPY to see Booth, and then when he says they are back on the case she is shocked, hurt, disappointed, angry, all in about three seconds (go Emily!) and then the cool scientist mask comes down.

    I think Brennan felt REJECTED by Booth, just as he must have felt rejected by her leaving. So she’s silently fuming while Booth is trying to show he can be a mature individual and still work with her,

    • Interesting thought. I’d like to give Booth a little bit of grief about this. Clearly, they are interested in each other, and make it verbally known. I mean, he even says he would ask her out if they weren’t working together. Then he has to fire her and Brennan takes advantage of this opportunity. Before you know it, he’s confessing a secret and they’re kissing in the rain. Just before, he says, “I think this is going somewhere.” Words of hope, right? I always thought Brennan was just trying to stop something before it started. But maybe she was willing to try it out, but didn’t want to start off with “tequila sex.” Next thing you know, Booth comes back to re-hire her (I looked, but I didn’t see the happy face), effectively putting them back to square one where they can’t be involved. And doesn’t look upset about it in the least bit. So now his “going somewhere” really does sound like a line to get her into bed. That scenario explains Brennan’s reaction better to me.

  18. ….Anyway, hand slipped and hit the reply button.

    The point about that first meeting and kiss miscommunication is that they BOTH felt the only kind of relationship possible was work. Brennan felt she put herself out there sexually, he starts talking about this “going somewhere” they have this amazing kiss and she decides doing this half drunk isn’t a smart move. A one night stand is one thing, but if he’d like it to be more she would too – hence her trying to impress him early on. Then, the next day he came in like nothing happened, but, he still wants to work with her. Meanwhile Booth feels rejected also, and was trying to hold on to her the only way he thought possible. Hence the fighting, slap etc. TOTAL MISUNDERSTANDING of where the other one is coming from.

    A year later, Booth comes after Brennan, for work. In Brennan’s eyes, that is what he values her for. However, she’s still attracted to him – not just physically, his cosmic scorecard thing – his heart pulls her also. (She may even be AWARE of these things, but it’s there). So, she demands the one thing that will let her be a part of his life, to be integral to his work, In work, she knows she is valued, just like MiCHAEL valued her. She hid her deeper feelings about Michael also, hid them from him, said she didn’t have them to Angela and maybe herself…but she’d walked away from him before. She’d walked away from him before, yet fell back in bed with him, and suggests she could help him find a job so that he could STAY and be with her. Brennan was a girl who loved rainbows, who learned love can be yanked away at any moment, so she rationalizes it isn’t real. However, buried deep is the girl who sees Beauty and Truth in its essence, The third of that Trinity is Love, so I thinm at one time she saw it also.

    Meanwhile, Booth does need her help, but it’s also a chance to maybe try again with her. Brennan shuts that down because she not going to set herself for hurt and probably for her a feeling of humiliation is she fell for that twice.

    I think these two have two different stories in their head about that first case, and have continued to work with those misconceptions ever since. If they could clear the air about that FIRST meeting, I think they’d get that happily-ever-after.

  19. Interesting questions Sarah. I read this earlier, and I’ve been pondering it off and on this evening. Personally, I don’t need to see who Brennan was before she met Booth. I’m content getting to know her, and about her life before Booth, through the glimpses of her that we receive throughout the overarching narrative of the series.

    Since the folks at Bones like to use music so much, allow me to use a line from Meredith Brooks’ song “Bitch”: Brennan is “a little bit of everything all rolled into one.” And I think that’s what makes her so fascinating. At least it is to me.

    I think that the woman that we see before us is the “real Temperance Brennan” as you put it. She is the sum of the parts of her whole life’s journey. Just like any of us are. We all have things that shape us: big moments, little moments, and just every day life. Brennan has had some really big moments shape and define how she looks at the world. Unfortunately for her, those things hurt her badly and she’s built walls around her heart to keep from getting hurt again. It’s a defense mechanism and up until Booth, they worked for her.

    But I think that deep down, even with her walls, her personality is still the same. I think that the little girl whose father took her chasing rainbows just because she loved them so much is still in there somewhere, but she’s grown up. She still finds beauty in the world around her. She goes to art exhibits (which is where she met Ange). She collects all kinds of music. She wears funky and eclectic jewelry. She surrounds herself with art and books as reminders of where she’s been. She uses the names of her favorite flowers for passwords because they are pretty, rather than the much more logical and rational secure passwords that any good IT tech or security specialist would recommend be used. She finds beauty in the constants of life; things like two plus two equals four and that the earth will turn and the sun will come up. (Don’t have the direct quote in front of me, but you get the idea).

    I also think that in order for her to have become an international bestselling author, she’d have to be in touch with her more sensitive and artistic side – the outward manifestations of which I just mentioned. In my opinion, good stories and good characters are what sell books. (At least it’s what I look for when I’m looking for new reading material.) I think that it would be difficult, if not impossible, for anyone who is truly as clinical and literal as Brennan frequently seems, to be able to write a compelling story with compelling characters that keep people coming back for more. I think that she likely understands people more than she’s willing to admit to, or perhaps she isn’t even aware that she understands them. Perhaps the writing started as an outlet, and when she writes, she taps into a part of herself that she doesn’t allow herself to go near in real life. If she keeps it in her fiction, it’s safe because it’s “just fiction”. If she allowed herself to access that part of herself in her reality, it would get messy and bring up things she can’t, and likely doesn’t want, to deal with.

    I think that when you boil it down, Temperance Brennan is not a person who can be easily pigeon-holed. She’s complex. She’s complicated. And she has a “much bigger heart muscle than people give her credit for”. Someone who mourns the death of a dog, and is heartcrushed by the thought of a woman burying her son alone on Christmas is, underneath the logic shield, a warm and loving person. But, she is very selective in whom she allows to see that side of herself. Namely Booth. The others do see it from time to time, but they don’t get it as up close and personally as he does.

    As for her journey and her eventually, I don’t think there is anything that is set in stone, though I know I’d like to see that eventually that journey leads her back to Booth. She has a tendency to be rigid and set in her ways. But I think that just like anyone else, her goals and vision of her future have changed. What anyone sees as what their life will be at 18 has surely changed their mind and plans by 20 or 25 or 30. That’s just life. I don’t think she believed in or was looking for a happily ever after before she met Booth. But sometimes, a chance meeting, a moment in time can completely change a person’s vision of the possibilities of the future. Now she understands the difference between being alone, and being lonely. Now she sees what could be and what she’s missing out on. I think that she has allowed herself to dream more about a life with Booth than we’ve seen, even after DitP. I just rewatched The Couple in the Cave, and the conversation she had with Angela about what people thought about their lives and where they’d be seem to sum it up: Her words say “I’m where I thought I would be” and she tries to sound convincing that it’s okay, but her face says “but I’m not happy about it”.

    So I think that she’s still on her path to that “eventually”. And hopefully it’s an eventually with Booth in it.

    • Wow. I love Brennan, but you just made me love her even more. 🙂 Now, to make sure Booth sees her like that, how could he resist?

      • Wow back! Thanks so much for the compliment! 😀

        Personally, I think that Booth already does see her like that. I think that is the woman he fell in love with. The problem is that she can’t see it in herself. So I think that the key is not so much to get Booth to see her that way (though, admittedly, he may need a reminder at this point in the story) but to get Brennan to see herself like that.

  20. I disagree with the God and Marriage part. Not the God part…but the marriage part. I can see her changing her beliefs about that. She used to say that it was an “antequated ritual”…but in season 5, she told her cousin. Margaret, that the only reason why she wasn’t married was that she didn’t have a reason to get married. She will find her reason…in Booth. I can see Brennan getting married to Booth…eventually.

    I also don’t think that the 100th and “DitP” were their “eventually” moments. They barely scrached service. Their “eventually” as yet to come.

  21. Truly love this one. I had to think about “eventually” a lot, and even if it’s not the topic, to me it has always been something like “A Streetcar Named Desire”, only that our streetcar is named eventually. It’s the final destination which name you read every day, and somehow you’re familiar with it even though you’ve never seen it. Like Marcel Proust’s walks to Meseglise and Guermantes.

    To me, Brennan’s “eventually” are the unknown but still familiar final destinations of her streetcar. I think she has been aware of the two possibilities right from the beginning, but she hasn’t been able to choose her direction. That means, she hadn’t been until Doctor in the Photo. Now that she has chosen she has to realize that the train doesn’t stop at her station, that she cannot reach the desired destination that easily. (Maybe it’s a streetcar named desire after all…)

    However, now that she knows which line she wants to take, I’m convinced she’ll make it to eventually rather sooner than later.

  22. I am new to this site having bumped in from another, and find it to be very thought provoking. To this point, I have done nothing but read. This is my first response, but the questions posed in this were too tempting to pass up. With that said, here are my humble opinions on the basic question “Who is the real Temperance Brennan?”

    First of all, I believe that the “real” Temperance Brennan is still a work in progress. She has come so far in the last 6 years that she is almost not the same character we met in Season 1, but she still has far to go to reach her full potential. She is an enigma. A genius intellectually, at the top of her chosen field,looked up to by many and sought by all, professionally. A lost 15yr old emotionally, abandoned by those she loved, carrying feeling of inadequacy and helplessness personally. So much so, that she has closed this part of herself off from everyone, including herself.

    Temperance Brennan personifies the “tragedy of genius.” As a young child, Temperance was probably your typical, bright child, hitting all the normal milestones of development ahead of the average child. As she grew, the differences became more pronounced and the gaps between she and her peers continued to widen as her genius became more and more evident. She probably always struggled with the interpersonal relationships, which again would become more pronounced along with her intelligence as she reached middle school.

    With the support of her family, she probably would have made it through school relatively unscathed. However, that was not the case. Abandonment by her family at the age of 15 would be devastating for anyone, but more so for her. At the time when her intellect and social awkwardness was beginning to separate her from her peers, she lost her basic support system, the people who loved her unconditionally and she trusted beyond all else to help her negotiate her world were gone. While she had the intellect to survive, as she demonstrated, she lacked the social savvy.

    So what did she do, she retreated into herself and focused on what she could control. She closed herself off from what scared and hurt her and found solace in knowledge, something she was extremely good at.

    She learned to avoid or compartmentalize her feelings and as everything else, accomplished this at a genius level to the point that she no longer acknowledged feelings as important. As with everything, she did this at genius level. With her steep learning curve, soon this was to become her norm.

    But, as all good psychologists will attest, avoidance is the poorest of the coping mechanisms, and we see this through her nightmares. While she compartmentalizes and rationalizes as she deals with colleagues, the feelings and emotions invade her sleeping hours.

    Enter Booth, her polar opposite. (I know this is a response to “who is the real TB, but she cannot be defined without Booth. His role in her life is critical, in my opinion)

    Although not as intelligent as Brennan, Booth is completely at ease, if not masterful in the realm of emotions and feelings. He is “gifted” in his own right and is able to see her as no one has seen her since her parents left.

    At first it annoyed and frustrated her, then intrigued her, and finally scared her. She had never met anyone who was not intimidated by her intellect and her “cold” exterior. He forces her to “feel” again because he recognizes very early on that her rationalization is her coping mechanism. He takes the time to see the woman behind the anthropologist, the emotions behind the cold exterior.

    As their partnership continues and grows, she begins to become the person she was meant to be.

    As with any relationship, there are almost always bumps in the road and that’s where we are today, at a bump in the road. However, bumps are also necessary for growth and learning.

    The “bump” in this road begins with the coma dream. Booth is no longer a “Knight in shining FBI standard armor”, but vulnerable and unsure of himself. She is now the one he relies on and it scares her into reverting back to some of her old ways. His “dream” was her wish, but her old feelings of abandonment, loss and inadequacy scare her once again. It is this fear that propelled her onto the path that they are on at the moment.

    Who is the “real” Temperance Brennan? She is an enigma. A genius, a lonely 15 yr old girl, a scientist, a friend, a dreamer, a woman in love, a work in progress. She is on the road to becoming everything she can be and more. As the season progresses, we will continue to be privy to the evolution of Temperance Brennan. I for one, am enjoying the story tremendously.

  23. First of all, I completely agree with “making an effort to sort of extend as much good grace toward Booth as we are extending toward Brennan this season”. I’ve sort of always understood Brennan, and her reaction towards Booth, the kind of distant, what people would call “cold” approach. I always thought that if anything she was showing her love more then open Booth was. Just because you’re distant doesn’t mean that you don’t undestand or are not right there. She takes her time, she is scared of being so open, which just makes that day that she is fully completely open all the more amazing. i always loved her for that, she is probably my most favourite television character because of it. But also I’m one of those people who finds good in everyone and everything so… : )

    Now to the oh so many questions that you pose… sure Brennan told Angela that she was lonely in High School, and i believe that she was, but i also believe that she didn’t mind the loneliness. High School is an alienating experience no matter who you are, it’s just how you live through it that is different. I can imagine Brennan dreaming normal girlhood dreams, like being married to her prince charming and being carried away on horseback, away from the wicked witch. It’s not as if Brennan had a supressed childhood (as in up to age 12) she had a damaging adolescence. The fact that she didn’t fit in wouldn’t faze her because she was loved by her family and she had her books and her dreams, that was all she needed to survive. When her family left her however, that wasn’t a fairy tale ending, she no longer had her dreams and childhood fantasies or her family so she compensated by burying herself in books, and logic. She pushed aside her aspirations for a bit, and just worked on the person she knew she wanted to become; the world famous forensic anthropologist.

    What i’m saying now is that Booth is her Prince Charming. She saw that as soon as he sought her out the first time. Maybe she didn’t love him in that way, and sure she disagrees with marriage completely now (only because it was the main part of that girlhood dream that was snatched away), but she saw him as her horseback ride out of this life she had built for herself. It was a different kind of getting out of the lab that he offered. She wasn’t digging up bodies in Rowanda, or Maluku, she wasn’t in complete control. He helped to steer the steed in whatever direction and she just had to held on for her dear life.

    And all this loss of control, all this letting her Prince Charming ride away with her in the backseat allowed her to dream again. She opened up.. more. Sure at first she was cold, but she wasn’t use to someone else holding the reigns, (btw sorry for the overused metaphor.. hehe) she fought with him even though he was doing exactly what she had asked for in the first place ( her dreaming then was putting them together in her books). And that’s what we see now. Her optimism and the beauty she sees in 2+2=4 is her 13 year old self being once again allowed to come out around people she loves. It had been supressed when the people who loved her left, but now she can trust others so much that her dreams are back.

    *Side Note (sortta)/*I find it interesting that most of the examples of when Brennan was expressing her optimistic 13 year-old self were in the 5th season. Sure it’s the pinnacle of B&B’s complete infactuation with eachother so far (and also they were just sooo CUTE!!) but i think that may be due to her writing the storyline of booth’s coma dream. That was sort of her confessing that she still had those girlhood type dreams, and then when booth found out she finally broke down that barrier of just writing about them, to actually hoping that they would happen in real life. */Side Note end*

    I think Brennan’s Happily Ever After is that Dream. The one that all girl’s hold about a Prince Charming coming down and saving them from their lives. And she’s already got that. She already feels safe to dream around people that love her for who she is. Her everything and eventually however is for that dream to be complete with the Prince carrying her off into the sunset because he loves her and she loves him too. Sure there is no marriage needed now, but what marriage represents she wants. Brennan’s a romantic, and I don’t think her everything and eventually has quite been fulfilled yet because although she knows booth once loved her, he turned her down again. She wants them together at the same time, just like we do. Brennan wants her version of a happily ever after, prince charming included.

  24. I sure – when Brennan was child, she was outstanding, extraordinary and very clever girl. I think she was stand out against other children. Maybe even boys like her but was a little afraid try to know her better. When she lost her parents, of course, it was big shock for her. Fortunately, she was very intelligent and devote himself to education when she can excellent realize himself. They afraid to feel pain again, therefore she avoid serious relationship.

    Booth became a very good friend for her. About 6 years she feel care, protection and sincere love. Of course Angela helps her too. She is faithful friend. Brennan is changing and evolving through the series. And her “eventually” will be when she will face her love to Booth. When she will stop afraid to open all her feelings to HER man. When she will happy and gave happiness to Booth. When she will understand that he is really “that guy”.

    And sorry for my english again))

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