Bones Theory

Top Five Tuesday: Call It Like It Is


Good morning, and happy Tuesday!  Hope you are having a good day!
In this week’s Top Five Tuesday, I thought we’d take a look at how B&B describe their personal relationship or what a personal relationship might look like between them. They might not even necessarily call it that, but it is what it is, I think. Over the years, they’ve said various things, and here are just a few to get us started.
Starting with…
1. We’re not compatible.
I find this interesting, because when I think about the word compatible, I think “not cookie cutter perfect”. Compatible doesn’t mean agreeing with everything– it means finding ways to work things out. I think Booth and Brennan ARE incredibly compatible (in many, many ways) and it’s one thing that will actually bring about their success.

From The Dwarf in the Dirt

2. We work together.

From The Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood


If Booth’s reason for not being with Brennan is that they wouldn’t be able to make it work, it’s interesting to me that Brennan’s reason here to Parker is that they work together. To me, that sort of signifies that she considers that it WOULD work between them, except for that pesky fact that they work together. She’s not saying, “We’re not compatible” or “Our worldviews are too different”, she’s just saying that despite their close relationship, it wouldn’t be appropriate to act on those feelings. Of course, she’s talking to an elementary school student, so perhaps she chose different words, but I still think it’s interesting that she never once claimed not to care for Booth in that way. 

3. We don’t make any sense.

From The Truth in the Myth

Ah, but that’s why we like you, B&B! We like that even though you don’t make sense, you somehow do, because then it gives hope in those situations that seem like THEY shouldn’t make sense but just do. Out of all of these examples, this one feels the most to me like one of them (in this case, Booth), offering the other (Brennan) a chance to refute or weigh in with an opinion. Brennan doesn’t take the bait thankfully and just gives him a saucy smile and leaves him on the sidewalk.  In my opinion, Booth was talking about more than just their working relationship. Agree?

4. “You should never indulge in a romantic relationship with someone you work with.”

From The Girl with the Curl

 This episode occurs BEFORE the infamous “Booth draws the line” scene, but I don’t always remember it that way. Though Brennan isn’t saying this to Booth, she is doing her own line drawing so to speak, when she tells Angela that it’s a mistake to date a co-worker (in that case, Hodgins).

I love that she uses the word “indulge”. Oh, Brennan…were you thinking along those lines or something? Perhaps you’re feeling tempted to indulge? It’s not really a Brennan word to use, but in the context of Booth (I assume), it fits.

5. “There’s a line that doesn’t even need to be there”

Speaking of the line, haha, whether or not it gets blown out of proportion sometimes, I think it does have a certain level of existence for Booth and Brennan. But for the most part, they accept it. It’s the “That doesn’t even need to be there” that makes me laugh every time.

From The Secret in the Soil


Sure, sure!

Okay, enough from me. What other instances are there where B&B have put labels on the possibility of a relationship outside their partnership?


21 thoughts on “Top Five Tuesday: Call It Like It Is

  1. To me, it is not so much what they say; but, how they act towards each other. No matter how many times they protest that they can’t go there, they don’t make sense or they are not compatible, we see “Guy Hugs”, hands placed on the back or arm, leaning towards each other, the fact that they have to be around each other even when they are not working together. For people who claim that they can’t be together, we see a lot of togetherness already. They work together, they have drinks together, they meet and have breakfast, lunch, dinner together. They get together on Christmas for a family dinner. I just watched Goop In The Girl last night. Brennan had changed her mind about having a family dinner until Booth took her up on her invite to that dinner. Once he said he was coming, that family dinner happened. You don’t do that for a co-worker, you do that for someone you care about. I think they protest too much. They are already together. It just hasn’t got intimate yet. If they would just open their eyes and see that they have been a couple for a very long time, they would see that the next step would just be a small one.

  2. They do seem to find different reasons for not getting together based on the situation at hand. Sometimes its because they work together. Sometimes its because Brennan says she’s unable to overcome herself and be what he needs. Sometimes Booth draws a line. They are quite adept at adjusting their reasoning to avoid personalizing their partnership.

    I think when it comes right down to it, honestly, that both of them have the same basic reason for their avoidance is–they are afraid of losing their partnership. They know they work well as friends and partners, but both of them have had enough relationships to know that things go bad sometimes. And when they do, it changes everything.

    The relationship they have with each other I think is deeper and profound than most relationships in their lives (except maybe Booth’s grandpa and Brennan’s mom). They both “have scars on their backs”. What if they got romantic and it didn’t work? They’d lose the stability and companionship they’ve found in each other.

    So when do they put labels on their relationship? All the time. The labels vary, but no matter what, they exist to compartmentalize the situation into something they can handle, something they can control. They aren’t fooling anyone but each other. Their co-workers know, Parker and Max know, and truthfully, B&B well, they KNOW…but they can’t admit it yet.

    And honestly, its been good that they’ve set these labels and boundaries, so that they can truly get to know each other without romantic love in the way (aka Sweets rationale to tell Angela to be celibate). They are basing their relationship on all the other things that make relationships work besides the physical. So when they finally cross “the line”, they will know they’ve done it right, even though people don’t understand their partnership, what is between them is theirs, and they alone will know when to strip down the labels and walls and just BE.

    Whew! I waxed more eloquently than I meant 🙂

    • Great post Seels and nicely put, bb. I’m definitely with you that by putting labels on their relationship they are trying to keep safe, keep their boundaries. Their body language and their actions for each other, though, shows that those boundaries were crossed a long time ago. As for anything Booth says after the coma dream, I take it all with a grain of salt. What he says to GG is nothing more than a way of trying to convince himself that what he’s feeling can’t be real; sort of trying to talk himself out of what is now inevitable particularly because he’s not sure she can reciprocate. The other Booth quotes? He’s just trying to gauge her reaction, to “feel her out” (or up, like Brennan likes to say) if you will. It’s also what he did he in the conversation with Brennan about Playdoh and the joining of the souls, or the elevator “what then? It couldn’t work” discussion. If she had said “oh, I think it could” he’d been all over it like an ant at a picnic.

    • Wow, I think you’ve just summed it up perfectly!

      • I think you hit on the essence of the show and their relationship: it comes to the ties formed by friendship. If at any point in the (near) future they get together, it seems to me that a nuclear explosion would be about the only thing to pull them apart. (Yes, but it is TV and those pesky producers have many, many ways to cause havoc. I’m sure Booth’s past might rear its ugly head and create some edge-of-your-seat moments.) If they could survive HB and rejections and whatnot, as well as people shooting at them, trying to blow them up and the like, they have a good shot at surviving the day-to-day conflicts that spring up.

    • BB, you are right, they aren’t fooling anyone, what I find funny is the comments made to Booth and Brennan by total strangers, for example:
      BOOTH: People fall in love and they get married. That’s what people do.
      BRENNAN: I thought you didn’t want to talk about it.
      BOOTH: Look, I’m just saying! You know, you believe in love, don’t you?
      BRENNAN: I believe that dopamine and norepinephrine simulate euphoria because of certain biological triggers like scent, symmetrical features…
      BOOTH: Symmetrical features.
      BRENNAN: Yes, it’s an indication of a good breeder. You appear to be a very good breeder.
      Major: How long have you two been going out..
      Brennan: What—
      Booth: —We’re, we’re partners.
      Brennan: That’s it.
      Major: Well, me and my partner talk baseball.
      (The Glowing Bones In the Old Stone House)

      How funny is it that total strangers can see right through Booth and Brennan.

      • Yes! Blind children could see what’s between them is more than “just” friends or partners! But what do I know… I’m friends with my co-workers and even friends with my ex… 🙂

  3. “We’re just partners.” – Not unlike “we work together,” “we’re just partners” is how they describe their “relationship” to everyone who thinks they are more than they think they are. The funny part, of course, is that we all know that they ARE actually more than they think (or at least will admit) they are. Confused yet?

    “I’m a scientist, I can’t change.” – I guess this isn’t technically a description of their relationship, but I consider it somewhat similar to Booth telling Gordon Wyatt that he and Brennan aren’t compatible. If compatibility can be described as “finding ways to work things out,” then this is Brennan telling Booth she can’t do that.

  4. We can’t overcome our differences.

    From Couple in the Cave…
    SWEETS: Yeah, I mean crossing class boundaries that extreme would be rare and indicate that our victims had something in common that we haven’t discovered yet.
    BOOTH: So its not possible for two people to overcome their differences?
    BRENNAN: We couldn’t.

    She goes on to say that Booth was lucky to find someone with whom he has parity.

  5. I just want to say that “We don’t make any sense at all” was NOT a reason Booth was giving why they can’t be together. To me, that was him saying “We don’t make any sense, but we work.” Because isn’t what he’s explaining something like “Just because you can’t explain something doesn’t mean it isn’t real”? I think they’re past that crap at this point, ever since Blizzard I think they’ve been on the same page relationship-wise. They’re gonna give this a try, someday.

    • I would agree with you. It’s something he’d figured out and wanted to say to her. It’s silly and charming and appropriately toned for their relationship at that point.

  6. You know, what strikes me as funny (ironic, not hahahaha) as I read these comments made by B&B – for all their words about “we don’t work/we couldn’t overcome our differences” etc., they are working, aren’t they? They are making it work.

    Love interests, bed partners, flirtations – they come and they go.

    Who is always there?
    Brennan for Booth.
    Booth for Brennan.

    To paraphrase Shakespeare, methinks they dost protest too much.

    • Which goes to Tricia’s comment regarding “We don’t make any sense at all.” It’s like what Sweets said earlier of their relationship, “You shouldn’t work well together, but you do.” They worked well together most of this season despite a SO and all the unspoken crap between them. They work well together despite their different POVs on so many things and their different approaches. It works. They work.

  7. I’ve always liked the dedication in Brennan’s book at the end of “The Woman in Limbo”:

    “This book is dedicated to my partner and friend, Special Agent Seeley Booth.”

    For me, that pretty much says it all. They have become more, but everything else that they have built between them is based on that friendship and their partnership.

  8. What is the infamous “Booth draws the line”-scene exactly? I have got to watch this show a third time, lol.

    • It’s the end scene in The Man in the Cell (season 2, episode 12 – the closing Epps-episode). I’m still not convinced that it was meant to be such an important symbol, but it sure has had a resounding impact on fanfiction ;-).

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