Sorry I missed last week’s scene study, and I am also sorry that my draft of it posted live inadvertantly. My bad on all counts! But today, I’m breaking down one of my fave scenes from season five, a short little smile-worthy moment that illustrates to me that all B&B really belong together.
For a little background history, the episode begins with Booth arriving to the lab with Parker, who has developed a fascination with his dad’s love life, asking all of the women in Booth’s life if they want to be Booth’s girlfriend. Booth is flustered by this, but there is also a case to solve, so the issue goes on the back burner with the rest of his love life, and he works the case. Partway through, he asks Sweets what he thinks Parker’s fascination means,
…and Sweets says it’s very natural; Parker is just identifying with Booth as his gender-specific parent. He encourages Booth to allow Parker to see him interact with women. Booth scoffs at the advice, and he appears not to put stock in it. But later, when he’s talking it over with Brennan, he invites her to hang out with him and Parker…
“It takes a village, Bones…” he begins, and Brennan is not 100% sure exactly what he means.
“I beg your pardon?” she asks.
“A village,” Booth clarifies. “To raise your kid properly. It takes a village.”
“Well, metaphorically,” Brennan counters. “It doesn’t mean we must all grow up in hamlets of 800 people or less.”
Booth either isn’t really listening to her or doesn’t even want to get into the literal definition of village. What he wants is to ask her a question:
“Will you be my village?”
…to which a lot of us immediately responded, “Yes. Yes, I will be your village, Booth.” Of course, he wasn’t speaking to us (RATS!), but if it can’t be us, then it’s gotta be Brennan, is my take on it!
I love that he doesn’t ask if she’ll be IN his village, as in a small part of the social structure he plans to build in order to provide Parker with a good view of his personal life. No, he’s not setting up a mass structure. With Parker, Booth, and now Brennan, he’s still got room for 797 other people.
“I need Parker to know that I lead a full and rewarding life.”
“But…you don’t” Brennan argues.
“What? Yes, I do.” Booth scoffs.
“No, you don’t,” Brennan insists. ”
“You work too much, you don’t socialize, all of which prevents you from having a full sex life.” The zing. The sauce. It’s hard to capture in screen stills, but do yourself a favor and watch the way Brennan’s eyes just track all over Booth when she talks about his sex life. It’s so subtle, but she does it a lot whenever sex comes up between them (another example is in season three, Man in the Mud…during the “Play the field and not plow it” scene). Ahhhh!
“Alright, please. Let’s just…take a hint from the suburbs, and you know…make it look good.” Booth asks. And again, yes, Booth, I’ll totally play village with you. 🙂
“You want to know if I’ll help you fool your son into thinking your life is gratifying?”
“Yeah,” Booth answers, which makes me sad. There’s this underlying context there that tells us Booth DOESN’T think his life is necessarily gratifying. In some ways, it seems (and all the more so this season), that Booth has an ideal of what the perfect life would be. Yet, from where I type, I think it has less to do with what Booth imagines to be perfect than his idea of what he wants others to see when they look at his life. I think, generally, when asked Booth would say he likes his life; he likes his job, his partner, his son, etc, etc. But when presented with the suburban family life, and when Parker gives the impression that Booth needs a girlfriend, that’s when Booth gets edgy. It’s less to do with him wanting the perfect life and more to do with him wanting to appear as if everything is fine. Just fine. Does that make sense?
There’s a lot of talk that he tries to control women and push them into his vision of the perfect life, but I don’t see that. I see it more as him trying to make things right. There’s a thin difference between the two, but that difference is Booth’s character. He’s not a chauvinist pig who controls women and plays games with them; he’s a good man who wants to get it right, but doesn’t quite see that it already IS right…not because of anything he’s done, but because of the good person he is (which he has a hard time seeing). Hahaha, that’s sort of a circular description, but I still think it works. Back to the scene…
“Will you do it?” Booth asks her.
“How?” Brennan asks.
“Come to dinner with us. Have fun,” Booth suggests. “Laugh at my jokes.”
See? There it is again…that idea that Booth would have to do something in order to prove he’s likable or worth being around or that his life is good. Brennan, thank goodness, does a better job of seeing the reality, which she basically says when she says…
“That might turn out to actually BE fun, thus becoming a self-fulfilling desire.”
She looks so pretty in this scene, I think, but she also is SO close to understanding the reality that Booth doesn’t have to DO anything to prove to Parker that Brennan enjoys his company. Parker is also mostly oblivious to this inner working, at the end of this episode, but that’s mostly for another day (of course, Brennan also gets THAT one right TOO, when she just talks to Parker about why he wants Booth to have a gf).
“Right,” Booth smiles. “So…you’ll do it?”
“Yes,” Brennan answers and does the cutest little shoulder shake as she leans in to make a joke. “I will be your hamlet of 800 people or less.”
“My village,” Booth insists, which is sort of not cool, but he’s so close (what is he even doing? Reaching for a napkin or something?!?), and his voice is so low, and his eyes so heavy lidded, and he smells so good, and…oh wait…we can’t smell him through the screen? Rats, again!
But still, it just kills me, because he’s totally ‘responding’ (if you catch my drift) to her teasing and squinty flirting, and instinctively he can’t help but tease back, even if he doesn’t want to be doing that.
“I was being amusing,” Brennan insists. “You should laugh at my jokes too!”
“I’m laughing.” Booth says. “On the inside.”
And Brennan makes a face that shows she’s not impressed.
Don’t worry, Brennan. Your joke was amusing. I laughed. A lot of us laughed. And Booth liked it too. He likes your jokes; he just can’t quite admit it yet. Because if he does, then he’ll feel the urge to say that he loves you. A lot. Everything about you. And THEN, if he admits that, then he’ll have to admit he wants to have 797 squinty babies with you to make your little B&B hamlet complete.
And if you want to adopt 30-year old bloggers, I’ll gladly be in your village. 🙂
Peace, Love & Bones,