Bones Theory

Scene Study: The Perfect Pieces in the Purple Pond- Every. Single. Word.


Hello, hello!

Happy BONES-less BONES-day! Here’s a scene from an episode of season four, and it’s actually one of my LEAST fave eps for several reasons, but this ending is such a slam bang finish that it cannot be ignored any longer.

Like all BONES eps, there are layers of conflict. Usually anchoring that conflict is a case, and revolving around it can be smaller conflicts for characters. Sometimes, the case conflicts take second fiddle to the relationship conflict, but in this episode, the case reigns as supreme issue. But another issue in this episode is one that, at the time, seemed to come out of nowhere, and that was that Booth felt this need to reaffirm that he and Brennan were *partners*. I remember thinking at the time (and I still do) that I didn’t understand why they were going BACK to those discussions. Yes, we knew they bickered. Yes, we all know they are partners. What was happening? I still don’t quite understand. But whatever the reason was, it happened. The underlying conflict there was that Booth’s back was bothering him and when Brennan offered to help him, he refused, and she felt slighted.

And that conflict is what is resolved here in this scene–alongside a small internal frustration Brennan feels over being dissed as being popular at writing because of her looks and not her scientific accuracy 🙂

Let’s get to it!

The scene opens with Brennan throwing away some paper.

Booth shows up, and it sort of feels like the old days, when he used to lean in her doorway for just a fraction of a second before entering her office. I suppose that technically season four now constitutes as ‘the old days’ , but you know what I mean!

“What are you doing?” he asks.

“Throwing out my book,” Brennan replies

“It’s still on your hard drive”, Booth figures.

“Nope, not anymore, it’s not” Brennan tells him.

“You erased it!” Booth is incredulous as he moves closer. “Whoa. Whoa, whoa, whoa, stop.”

“I don’t want to be a writer anymore,” Brennan tells him as he tries to dig out her papers.

“Oh, why?” Booth argues. “Because of what that writer said? He was an idiot. Did you see his glasses?”

“But I don’t WANT to be a sexy scientist” Brennan kind of whines in this adorable Brennanie way.

“That’s like me saying I don’t want to be a sexy FBI agent.” Booth rationalizes.

“We can’t change who we are,” he argues.

And then it’s this little awkward moment between them that I can never quite figure out. Brennan doesn’t say anything, and Booth is sort of hanging out to dry?

What’s she so worked up about? That Booth thinks she’s sexy? That Booth thinks HE himself is sexy?

Either way, the awkwardness is over when Brennan sits in her seat and Booth bends over to pick up the rest of her manuscript. He’s complaining that it’s hurting his back.

And Brennan is…well, I guess she is honestly annoyed or feeling a crisis on whether or not she should keep writing.

Booth puts the last of the papers on the pile and sighs.

“…suspenseful and chilling.”

Brennan apparently recognizes these words immediately, haha, as if they’ve only been ever said about her.

“Temperance Brennan leads the pack,” Booth continues.

“Anthropology has never been more exciting”

I love this little moment from Booth, because he’s sort of blushing and his voice has gotten softer in that way it does when he’s kind of shy and honest. It’s usually reserved for when he’s talking about his own personal and private life, and so even though he’s talking ABOUT Brennan and her writing, to me, it means that he’s revealing something of himself, or as he put it early in the series, “offering something”.

Brennan gets it. “You memorized my reviews?”

“Angela can scan these and get them back on your computer.”

“You know my reviews, but..” Brennan wants to get back to that little tidbit. “Do you even read my books?”

Say it with me now, “Every. Single. Word.”

Except he doesn’t quite say it with that much pronunciation. It’s more this smooth slide of the words altogether everysingleword…

It’s that low voice again, like when he says his own name… Seeley Booth. seeleybooth… in his NoIAmNotAPrudeButIReallyDon’tNeedToProveItDoI? voice, and holy smokes, that dimple. And the eyes. And the lips. And the jawline. And the button undone beneath the knot of the tie.  And the…

Where were we? Oh yes,

“You never said anything”.

We’ll just forget that in season two’s “Bodies in the Book”, Booth and Brennan talked about her books, and he said he read them because if she has time to write them, he has time to read them.

See how easy it was to forget that horrible inconsistency?


Yeah, I did just do that. Booth grins doth cover a multitude of writing sins.

Booth has another way of rationalizing it. “Well, I figure I’m all over your real world,” he tells her. “Why would you want me in your fantasy world, too?”

Um…because, Booth. Because. Because you are the sexy FBI agent, and you can’t change who you are!

“I can appreciate that,” she tells him as she yanks back her manuscript. Really? You can appreciate that he so kindly stays out of your fantasy life, Brennan? Something else you could appreciate is tossing the papers to the side and tossing the man to the desk.

“See how this works?” Booth is excited. “Give and take? We’re partners!

Yeah, nope. I still don’t feel the writers’ reason to emphasize that so much.

“Except you won’t let me fix your back,” Brennan challenges.

“Oh, come on, my back is fine,” Booth waves her off, and Brennan retaliates by threatening to throw her book away in the trash can.

“Oh really?!” she asks.

“Okay, how do I know that you’re not going to like paralyze me or make it worse…”

And I love the way Brennan has tilted her head to the side in that way she does when she thinks he’s being unreasonable. As if to say, “I AM a best selling author Booth. And the world’s most renowned forensic anthropologist. Your back is no match for my awesomeness.” She just sets the papers down, very calmly, but with authority.

Booth’s eyes sort of flare when she really looks at him.

“I also help you by explaining a lot of things to you…” she continues (notice, not by talking about any sort of skill she has with the skeletal structure, haha), but it doesn’t really matter, as Booth is staring at her! Ooohlala!

Hey Booth, would you like her to stay out of your fantasy world?

How about now?

He’s muttering something about how he also explains things to her, but clearly his mind’s not in it. To be fair…

It’s getting kind of crazy up in there!

“Well, my things are more important,” she argues.

“That’s debatable,” Booth gasps out quickly before she wrenches him back and she (what he will later in the season call) crrr-acksss it!

“Necessary pain,” she tells him and then gives him this little twirl thing that seems to me to be more on the side of “Thai massage” if you catch my drift.

“The way you help me,” Booth tells her as he straightens up. “Is you help me be a guy,”

“I help you be a guy?” Brennan asks him. And also…

Oh, hey, hey! Not so immune now are we, Ms. Sexy Scientist!

“Yeah, you know…it’s a guy’s thing to fix things to make ‘em right. When I fix things,  I feel that I am one with the universe.”

Well Booth, sweetie, babycakes, … while you are summing yourself up in a nutshell, she’s not even listening to you

Brennan presses on the small of his back and Booth arches forward, “Whoa”, but then he’s smiling.

“That was amazing,” he gushes. “How did you do that?”

“See, we help each other” Brennan tells him.

“Quid Pro Quo”

And this is actually my favorite moment of this scene…right here.

“I know what that means—quid pro quo,” Booth brags, a little dazzled.

“I’m sure you do,” Brennan answers, completely sincerely and also a little dazzled, perhaps? But I really do love that. She believes him that he knows what that means, and she’s so…open in that span of a few seconds. Her voice is affected by his nearness, her eyes are wider and bluer and all of those other things that indicate all that good stuff.

“I know a lot of things,” Booth gets cocky.

“Wellllllll, you didn’t know what mysophobia meant,” she tells him. Nice try, Booth. Thanks for playing the “I know what that means” game!

But Booth doesn’t care; he’s just happy to have gotten the chance to play! “Well, you didn’t know that you could just take coffee grinds. It was garbage, and…”

The scene fades away as Brennan says, “I sort of knew that…I was just making sure that you knew that.”

Hahahaha! Yep, they can’t change who they are!

Booth had JUST gotten done telling Sweets that he had tickets to a game and didn’t want to be late, but then he shows up at Brennan’s office. So what do you think? Did Booth make it to the baseball game? Did he even really have tickets? Or are his really good seats at some bar with Brennan next to him?

What’s the significance in them reiterating their partnership here? Is Booth as affected by Brennan’s touch as we think, or do we exaggerate it in our minds? Though Brennan is helping Booth physically, he helps her emotionally. Which is more vulnerable in this scene?

Lots to discuss, so get to it! I want to read every.single.word!

Oh, and here’s just one more time for good measure.

COME ON NOW! Why wouldn’t you want this in your fantasy life?

Peace, Love & Bones,



31 thoughts on “Scene Study: The Perfect Pieces in the Purple Pond- Every. Single. Word.

  1. I actually liked the case. It was a weird one and I didn’t guess the mother did it until Zach pointed out that the victim’s mother was OCD. I like it when I don’t guess the killer too early.

    When I see this scene, I think Brennan is annoyed with Booth because in the first part of the episode, he offered to break in the new intern (Wendell) and Brennan gets mad because he is always trying to fix things. I think she thought he was questioning her abilities to handle people and it really irked her. On top of that, she wanted to fix Booth’s back and he was too scared to let her. He may be strong and brave; but, lets face it he is afraid of dentists and he doesn’t like the idea of people cracking his back (at least at this time). I think that Booth knew that Brennan was irritated with him so he pressed her about being partners. Of course, that was my take on the whole thing and I could be wrong. Like Barbara says, we don’t always get all the info.

    I love when Brennan stands behind Booth and moves her arms around him to fix his back. The look on his face when he flicks his eyes back and then forward tell me he is a little scared about what she is going to do and also maybe just a bit hot and bothered that she is actually moving her arms and hands around him. It is sort of a deer in the headlights look. Just love. it.

    Like you I also like it when Booth says he knows what Quid Pro Quo means. He pretends that he is stupider than he is sometimes around people he is after and lets Brennan be the smart one; but, sometimes, I think he would like her to acknowledge that he is actually quite smart.

  2. So, yesterday all I could think was, “Well . . . yea . . . ”

    And today, all I’ll be thinking is “Why would you want me in your fantasy life, too?”

    Bones Theory should come with a label: WARNING – This blog has been known to cause day’s long distraction!”

    My take on Brennan’s momentary hesitation is that she was processing what Booth had just said. That he so matter-of-factly called her sexy, without any flirting to make it more casual or teasing. Works for me, anyway.

  3. I don’t have much to say today, except that I love this scene, and I love this post! and THIS!!! “Booth grins doth cover a multitude of writing sins.” YES!

  4. Quick comment for now: I love this scene. I also like the episode.

  5. Thanks for all the screen caps of Booth grins. Made my day and I was grinning right back on the computer screen!

    Here’s my take on the the constant “We’re partners” thing from Booth:

    We commented yesterday on Brennan’s constant “I’m meant to be alone. Good thing I like to be alone.” That she says these thing to try to stay “impervious” and distant and make herself believe them.

    My take is that Booth is contstant qualifying everything with “We’re partners” to #1 protect himself from his feelings for her, and #2 to help protect her feelings as well. He knows she’s not in that relationship place, but he still wants to be close to her. She writes books, dedicates them to him, of course he’s reading it. He’s digging down in the trash to retrieve her book (with a bad back!!) to help her. So then she ends up fixing his back for him….yay partners help each other!!! It’s like Booth calling hugs “guy hugs” and something partners do…well….we all KNOW they aren’t but he says them to help her justify their closeness. He gives her lots of “rational” reasons for the things they do together to help give her a different, rational explanation besides I LOVE YOU JUST SAY IT ALREADY YOU GUYZZZZZZ! (oops, sorry, I digresss.

    But anyway that’s why I’m OK with “we’re partners”. Now of course, they are “PARTNERS” in more ways than one….so yay!

  6. I actually like this episode too. I thought it was funny how Booth would continually defend Brennan and she would get mad because she can take care of herself. I think that was why Booth kept saying “We’re partners” meaning he has a right to defend and “fix” things in her life because they have that special partner bond. But I definitely agree with bb’s take that Booth has to justify their closeness to himself, to Brennan, and to anyone else who’s watching (though, they aren’t fooling anyone …).

  7. The sun is shining, Booth is smiling, all is right with the world…Who doesn’t love that look when she puts her arms around him? Does she even understand the effect she has on him? It’s almost like Pavlov’s dog; kiss the cheek, slide off the belt buckle, fix the tie=deer in the headlights, 100% falling over-the-waterfall look. It would almost be funny, if I could just remember to breathe while I’m watching.

    On the partners thing, I think sometimes it means “line in the sand” partners (post-Hannah bar scene, Cam almost got killed scene) and sometimes it means “we have utter permission to flirt within these confines” partners, like in Tony and Roxie and the Museum moment. But it’s always primarily been their permission slip to do things that go way beyond what people do in a simple partnership, like saving her book and fixing his back. I guess it’s a way to save face. I think Booth says it the most because he finds that those words reassure Brennan that she’s safe with him emotionally and that he won’t ever push all the way ( even when it’s clear to us that he would want to!) Calling something “what partners do” defuses the significance of what’s really going on even when all an outsider sees is a massive discharge of electricity between them. As to the “why would you want me all over your fantasy world” comment, all I can say is my a…….

    • Every time one of them makes a comment about “we’re partners, that’s what partners do,” etc. I can’t help but remember the deputy (park ranger? sherrif?) who said, “Me and my partner talk about baseball.”

      Sure, B&B. “We’re just partners.” Uh huh. We totally buy it.

      • And they always have that “just got caught doing something we shouldn’t” look every time someone suggests that they’re a couple, like they know what’s going on, but won’t admit it!

      • @maria–I love their looks to each other like that too!! “Why do people always assume we’re a couple?” haha

  8. Lovely post – I haven’t watched this episode in a really long time, so there was lots of nuances you reminded me of (Obviously going to have to go back and re-watch, can’t have the MasterMind Bones trivia level dropping!)

    I loved the ‘you’re a sexy scientist, I’m a sexy FBI agent’ line, because it’s just totally true 🙂 I’ve always thought Booth is more than aware that he’s hot, he’s just not as ‘in your face’ about it as Brennan is, but I love that he uses confident rationality to persuade her. After all, it’s the truth.

    Love the back crack – love that he gets her book out, love when she gets pouty, love the ‘partners’ reassurance. love it all 🙂

    Gotta get back to work!

  9. I think a lot of Brennan’s tension in this episode had to do with Zack’s reappearance. There’s a deleted scene in which she and Booth are talking in the SUV (she’s driving because his back hurts) and she talks about how she can’t understand why Zack did what he did, that his “true best self” would never do anything like that….

    So I think that idea is at least lingering behind her long pause after “we can’t change who we are”.

    • I had my reply all ready to write, but I read yours, and thought I would add something first, and post mine in a little while. I agree with your idea. I saw the deleted scenes yesterday, and she did seem very upset by Zack.

      Maybe the idea of we can’t help who we are refers her to the idea that Zack, couldn’t help who he was. and with her rational way of thinking, she thinks he was predisposed to doing what he did. Although we know he didn’t kill anyone, she doesn’t, and his comment was like a slap in the face.

  10. Sarah,
    I love you!
    Go ahead, make my day with another Bones Theory Study!
    They are soo much fun, so well written, and yes, such distractions! But they keep me going during the Bones drought.
    Thanx so much!

  11. I love this scene, primarily because they follow up this episode with another one, where Brennan hurts Booth’s back and he is on pain medication. Whenever they go back to things they brought up in previous episodes, it feels like an inside joke only I (and you other Bones fans) know.

    Has anyone else noticed that while Brennan is tentative with most people about physical affection, she is always the first one to hug Zach. Has there been a blog post about that, that I missed? Can we talk about her relationship with Zach? I find that so interesting. And Booth’s relationship with Zach, seeing how much Bones loves Zach, is a further topic of conversation I’d like to pursue with anyone who is game.

    • Hi Chilly; I just sent a post to Seels about Zack. I was feeling a bit weird about it because I wasn’t sure anyone still cared, but you’ve made me feel a lot better about it!

    • I started to write a post titled, “She doesn’t like to be touched,” but I got as far as “Except by Booth” and realized that pretty much said it all. 🙂

      • How about a post titled “He doesn’t like to be touched”…”except by” oh, same result…!

  12. This ep isn’t in my top ten but I definitely like it. Sweets, the case and Zach — all good things about it. This scene is just wonderful. That Booth says she’s sexy like it is fact and not just opinion and they can’t help who they are just cracks me up. Brennan is all about the truth so for him to state it like that doesn’t leave her any room to disagree about herself (or about him being sexy). And I think she is secretly enjoying the opportunity to put her hands on him when she fixes his back. The part where he saves her manuscript and convinces her to continue writing shows he genuinely cares. It shows his attraction to her isn’t about how sexy she is — it’s about who she is as a person. She can’t help but fall for him a little bit more then. The ‘just partners’ thing is like the ‘guy hugs’ — it’s just a way to label what they have without admitting to what it really is. MJ Bush: that line about “my partner and I discuss baseball” is one of my all time favorites though I forgot which ep that is in — Physicist maybe? It’s one of the best examples of another character observing their relationship and defining it as something more than ‘just partners’.

  13. And I had to go and loan out my season 4 DVD’s! All these delectable pics and I’ll have to wait to re-watch the episode until I get them back. Oh well.

    How many times am I allowed to say that I love DB’s facial expressions? They’re just so darn cute and…revealing. Very, very revealing. I don’t know who first used the term gobsmacked on here, but it’s a very accurate description of the way Booth looks at Brennan oh, probably half the time. And I’m guessing he didn’t want her fixing his back for the same reasons he didn’t want her undressing him in Goop – it requires a potentially dangerous level of intimacy. Delicious for those of us who are watching, but presumably torture for someone who has the hots for his partner but won’t admit it.

    But that’s not a one way street because Brennan is totally checking her sexy FBI agent partner out from behind. Methinks she likes what she sees. A lot.

    As far as Booth’s need to keep reiterating that they’re partners, I can definitely already agree with what’s already been said. He (well, both of them really) used it as a shield to avoid having to cop to what was really going on.

    • @Stephanie, you are SO right about Brennan liking what she sees. Scroll back up the screengrabs (yay!!) and look at the one right under: “That’s debatable,” Booth gasps out quickly before she wrenches him back and she (what he will later in the season call) crrr-acksss it! She’s totally into it 🙂 Hehe we are on to you Brennan!

      • Also check out the screen caps below “I help you be a guy” and “Well, Booth, sweetie, babycakes…”

        The first one her eyes are kind of downcast like she’s pretending she’s not checking him out. The second one she looks like she’s just flat out admiring the real estate.

        Of course I may be totally reading into things but it sounds good to me. 🙂

      • Speaking of admiring the real estate – now that we’ve had the change in the game, etc., does anyone else wonder how Booth stacks up to Sully?

        You know, for statistical purposes I mean. Pure scientific inquiry, of course. *ahem*


      • I adore this scene, just completely adore it. The case is heartbreakingly sad, but this scene just makes me smile. I love that he reads her books and enjoys them so much that he’s got her reviews memorized. Personally, I like a lot of authors, but I can’t say that I know any of their reviews; heck I usually just ignore the reviews. But I just love that he is proving how supportive he is, even if it’s silently, that he not only reads her books, he reads her reviews, too. And I love that he is so supportive and knows her so well that he literally saves her from herself by rescuing her book from certain doom. It’s kind of swoon-worthy.

        Funny that I’d never noticed Brennan checking Booth out before… think I was probably too busy checking him out myself *whistles innocently* I love that she’s checking him out in a way that he can’t see, and is almost eager to get her hands on him… but then, who wouldn’t be?

        MJ, there is absolutely no contest. Don’t get me wrong, Sully’s great and all, but he can’t hold a candle to Booth. I mean, look at that face, and those grins, and that real estate… yep, Booth wins, hands down. 😉

      • About Sully, he was a nice guy and all….but im preeeeettttty sure he never broke the laws of physics.

        Just sayin’. 🙂

      • lol lol lol

        Well, I wasn’t actually thinking of the physics department. 😀 More like Kimberly said, in the…um…nickname department. Yea, the nickname department. We’ll use that one.

        Come on, guys, get your mind in the gutter with us. We have cookies! 😀

      • MJ, I assure you, my mind was in the gutter when I said Sully can’t hold a candle to Booth… *whistles not-so-innocently* Oooh, cookies! 😀

  14. I always wondered what Booth’s nickname was.

  15. I think Booth is exaggerating the “We’re partners” thing to cover up all the evidence of infatuation that has occurred all through this episode..telling Sweets not to be mean to her, defending her from the mean FBI tech, grinning about knowing that she has a new intern….the guy has it bad but isn’t sure he wants her to know yet.

    And that pause….she’s thinking “does he really think I’m a sexy scientist?” and he’s thinking “Geez, did I just tell her I thought she was a sexy scientist?”

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