Bones Theory

A Critique of Season Six: Part Two

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Hello, and welcome to part two of this series. If you recall, I’m sort of once and for all working through my issues with season six—hoping that once I’ve got them down in print, it will be a sort of catharsis, and I’ll be good to go!

  1. The over-use of under-developed plot threads resulted in lack of quality.
  2. Hannah’s character was unneeded, poorly executed, and thankfully had little to no effect on Brennan and Booth’s storyline.
  3. Booth and Brennan were treated unfairly as characters, and the ‘punishment’ they suffered did not fit their ‘crimes’.  Likewise, the ‘fix’ they received did not resolve their ‘punishments’.
  4. From a season and series perspective, using the baby/pregnant storyline as a “gotcha” was evil, but not in the genius sort of way.

Yesterday I discussed my dissatisfaction with unresolved storylines, and today, I’m going to talk about Hannah. That storyline was also unresolved or at least wrapped up very hastily, but I find myself not dissatisfied that it’s just over. *breathes a sigh of relief*.

Specifically, I’m going to talk about how despite the chronological order of the plot-lines, it’s a fallacy to state that the current relationship status of Booth and Brennan happened because of the Hannah storyline. It happened in spite of it. Just because something occurs before another something occurs does not assume a cause and effect relationship between those two instances. Over and over after Hannah was gone, I heard people say, “As much as we hate to admit it, Booth and Brennan wouldn’t be where they are if it wasn’t for Hannah.” And that is just simply not true.

For one thing, it partially negates the reality of the pre-Hannah Booth and Brennan partnership/relationship. But also, Hannah never *really* came into contact with B&B in their B&B ness. There were Booth and Hannah moments (mostly in his apartment), and there were Booth and Brennan moments, and there were Hannah and Brennan moments (I’m hard pressed to say which were most uncomfortable to watch, but I’m leaning toward the Brennan and Hannah moments, which just made me crazy). Sure, there were moments where all three of them were together at the same time, but they almost always revolved around case work unless other people were present. There were certainly character dynamics there, but none of which linger to this day, as far as I see.

Brennan had already come back from Maluku with a desire to be more open toward the people she cared about. This did not change throughout the season. Booth’s main revelations and character change for this season came in Signs in the Silence, when he told Brennan he wanted the love in his life to be about more than luck.  Those are series-wide plot threads and themes that were not related to Booth moving on or not.

Booth and Brennan would have happened (and did, and are) whether Hannah was ever in the picture or not. The journey that B&B are on is one that was set in motion a long time ago, and I’m not trying to be fatalistic about it, but more I’m just saying that the moments Booth and Brennan had together this season were not Hannah related—they were moments that were part of that existing journey.

One ‘issue’ for lack of a better word that causes people to think that Hannah was necessary is that two amazing Booth and Brennan moments (her teary confession of regret, his teary confession of vulnerability) occur in episodes that Hannah happened to be in, but neither one is really Hannah related. How do we tell the difference? Because we know the characters of Booth and Brennan. We’ve known them for 110+ non-Hannah episodes, and we see their motivations. We also now have the luxury of seeing the after-effects of those two moments, and in both cases, Hannah is a non-issue for each one.

Okay, you might say. So what you’re saying is that Brennan did not have her realization and make her confession because of Hannah?

And my answer is, exactly.

I contend that if Brennan had really been thinking of Hannah in that moment, she never would have told Booth she had regrets. That would have been a cruel, vindictive move, and Brennan is not cruel and vindictive, and she especially was not cruel and vindictive in that moment. She was open, she was vulnerable, she was honest with herself and with Booth, and her admission could have been revealed to anyone and still been very meaningful.

Well, let me backtrack a little bit. It was more meaningful because she DID tell Booth, but the way I see it, it wasn’t a “I want revenge” or selfish “Booth is mine” sort of moment. Booth told her he couldn’t, and he brought Hannah’s name in to the conversation. Brennan saw his reasoning and the facts and agreed, but that’s not the same thing as the moment being caused by Hannah’s presence nor a culmination of Hannah moments. Other moments earlier this season that just so happened to have Hannah in them were more about Brennan’s sense that Booth had pulled away from her. Imagine a scenario in which she overhears Booth and Parker talking about going swimming somewhere else. Brennan would have had the same reaction she did– bummed out. Imagine a scenario in which Booth is going to visit Pops and he doesn’t invite Brennan. Imagine Booth stays away from the lab. Imagine that Hodgins and Angela are going to announce their pregnancy and Booth decides to hang out with some hockey teammates. All of those scenarios could have just as easily happened and been just as true to Booth’s storyline. And Brennan’s reactions to those moments would have been the same as they were in the show. Some things she would have cared about, and some she wouldn’t have. She would have frowned and considered things and begun to feel regret as she began to realize how worth the risk Booth is. Those reactions Brennan had weren’t jealousy over another woman in Booth’s life–she was fairly pragmatic about it, and in fact, she was almost over the top in her acceptance and understanding as well as her efforts to make a friend in Hannah. As we know, this friendship lasted as long as Hannah was in Booth’s life.

We never saw Brennan being mopey about Hannah. She felt a twinge in Body in the Bag when Hannah told her what Booth had told her, but it would have been the same reaction if Cam had told her that Booth had told her of their conversation. Or Sweets. Or Jared, etc.

Everything revolved around Booth. That’s not to say that Brennan revolved around Booth like some poky little puppy or anything like that. I just mean that when it comes to Booth related things or issues, he’s the deal for Brennan.

The both of them are just centered on one another (which brings up another question for another day: Does ‘the center’ control them, or do they have to actively agree to be the center?).

Others have argued here that Brennan’s struggle in season six happened because there was distance between her and Booth, and I agree with that. Others have also argued that Booth pulled back in the season six premiere, already prepared to set some distance between himself and Brennan. I agree. Others have argued that Booth was likely to have cared about Hannah, but it wasn’t until she moved to DC for him that he fully decided to commit to her. I agree with that also. But what’s to say that if Hannah had never come that Booth wouldn’t have still been stand-offish toward Brennan.

I mentioned that a couple of times, and heard back, “But how would they do that without making Booth look like a complete jerk?” And I’d argue back that if they’d done it right, it could have been done, and it would have been better as far as both of their character developments. Here are a few organic storylines that already existed that could have put Booth on edge.

  1. Sniper storyline (The ‘threats’ he received in Boy with the Answer)
  2. His dad (so much room there—so much possibility!)
  3. Pops dying or being sick (sad to think about it, but it’s true!)

“Oh, but all of those storylines would have required guest stars, and that gets tricky, and…”

Yes, true, but Kathryn Winnick was a guest star, and I’m not going to get into that except to say these two things:

  1. I’ve heard (but have no direct knowledge) that she has been quite good in other TV roles.
  2. Other guest stars have done more with much less screen time.

Yes, in the end, the show happened the way the writers wanted it to happen, as discussed yesterday and a lot of other days 😀

But my point is that the writers themselves were also very careful not to have Hannah leave any lasting impression. In that way, she was true to her own character (and studying her character would be fascinating!). But her character was not necessary to the plot of this season.

“But what about his line, ‘I have to move on’? Doesn’t that make him a liar if he doesn’t actually do it?” I would hear, and my response was “not necessarily.”

Booth did make an attempt to move on, a couple of times. We hear him tell Sweets that he has a date (Death of the Queen Bee (though who knows if it’s true!), and he does date Catherine. He’s tentative there, and cautious, and obviously not kissing her outside of a pool hall and telling her his deepest heart-issues, but still…he’s trying. Imagine a season where he just tries, on his own, to be himself and work hard, and possibly move on. If the writers would show us scenes of him dealing with loneliness in his apartment or personal family struggles or something like that, it would have made sense, and it could have worked. THEN, the result is a ‘purer’ Booth. Not in the sexual way—I didn’t care about that—but in the strength of his character way. His motivations would have been clearer, instead of, for example, the scene at the end of Sin in the Sisterhood that is vague at best. He would have genuinely struggled and changed and experienced growth from his personal journey.

Supposition, of course, as Hannah did come, he did ask her to move in with him and he asked her to marry him and all of that.

This sort of goes back to yesterday’s “but it didn’t actually happen” idea, but this reminds me of something TJ Thyne said about the Hannah vs Brennan issue, back in September, 2010. It was during an interview with pal Marisa Roffman and Hart Hanson, and when asked what he thought, he said this…

TJT: Here’s my feeling on it…my feeling is if Brennan goes up against someone who is vivacious and sexy and sassy and smart and has it all and can fight and in the end, [Brennan] wins her man, then God, you’re going to be so much more excited for her!

Except it wasn’t so much that Brennan was even against Hannah, which might have been very deliberate on the writers’ part. But to avoid that cliché, it just resulted in blah. There wasn’t a victory, because there wasn’t a fight. There wasn’t a fight, because that’s not Brennan’s style (or Booth’s), and as I mentioned before, she loves Booth and never would have gone there. Who knows how long they would have remained partners realistically, but still…from what we saw, there was no sense of jealousy.

That brings us to Booth’s ‘moment’ in Daredevil in the Mold. After that moment, I was convinced that the Hannah storyline had been mostly a waste, but I was willing to wait for the rest of the season to see how it played out. And as episode after episode went by…she was barely mentioned.

One argument I receive is “Oh, well, Booth threw those peas, so that means he really loved Hannah”.

My answer is, “He did love Hannah, but the peas were mostly just annoyance at Sweets”. We’ve seen him annoyed at Sweets before, like when he stormed in to the interrogation observation room when Sweets was feeding Perotta questions about his dad, and later when Booth once again called Sweets out for asking questions about his dad (see a theme?). Because the word “Hannah” was mentioned doesn’t mean his throwing the peas was about that. It COULD have been, but it just wasn’t. If the writers had really shown Booth struggling a lot, it would have made sense. But they didn’t, and he wasn’t—not really. His angst for the rest of the season was Broadsky related (again…could have been just that), with the singular annoyance of Walter Sherman.

Hannah happened, but there were a lot of other moments that happened at the same time and within those Hannah episodes that have nothing to do with her. And to attribute the resolutions or effects of those other moments TO Hannah and that storyline is just false reasoning.

If Hannah hadn’t been around, would Booth and Brennan still have had conversations about whether or not love was real? I think so. If Hannah hadn’t been around, would Brennan have still come back from Maluku, more open to the possibility, only to find Booth tentative? Seems like it. If Hannah hadn’t been around, and Booth had kept himself distant except for a real ‘just partners’, would Brennan still have felt the loss and expressed her regret to him? Yes.  If  Hannah hadn’t been around, would Booth have acknowledged Brennan’s regret, but been strong enough to say something like, “The last thing I want to do is hurt you, but I just can’t, Bones. I can’t go there again.”

If the answer to that last question is ‘no’, then it’s a Booth issue, and it’s not Hannah related. So the writers gave Booth a crutch (Hannah) to fall on after Brennan expressed her regret and did NOT make it about his character growth, nor his ability as a grown man to rationally choose not to be with Brennan if he didn’t want to. The writers set him up to fail in that moment, because they didn’t give him the strength as a character that he needed to be in order to face his truths.

That’s getting into tomorrow’s topic about how badly Booth and Brennan were treated, so I’ll stop there for today. See you when the sun’s shining!

Peace, Love & Bones,

~S

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21 thoughts on “A Critique of Season Six: Part Two

  1. Ah, Hannah: bad idea, worse execution.

    If they had not had Hannah and Booth had said that he can’t go there again in DitP, then they could have given us one of the things they told us they were going to give us: Brennan chasing Booth. They could have reversed roles for a while. That would have been much more compelling than Hannah. It would have reflected some actual emotional turmoil on both their parts.

    This discussion also helps with what I found the most baffling event of the season: Booth proposing to Hannah, despite Brennan’s confession, and then, despite being devastated (apparently), coming back around to Brennan pretty darned fast. There is no coherent reason for it. It was just the way the decided to deal with that “scrummy conundrum,” I guess.

  2. You make an excellent argument that B & B didn’t NEED the Hannah character to get together, but I think it’s safe to say from the writers’ point of view, Booth having a girlfriend was the EASIEST way to accomplish Brennan’s epiphany and the eventual coupling of B & B expeditiously and realistically. And I suppose I should make it clear that while I found the whole Hannah sub-plot painful (and I still can’t bear to watch early season 6 episodes because it makes my stomach hurt), I didn’t hate Hannah. That said, I don’t think they chose very wisely as far as the actress was concerned, and I don’t think they developed the storyline in the best possible way to achieve the desired result. I don’t have anything again Kathryn Winnick, but I just never felt like she was a very good fit for the show or with Booth. I felt like every scene with her was a little awkward, and I never really bought it. Then again, maybe that’s what they wanted?

    I feel like this reply is very disjointed because I am being continuously interrupted by my children, so if this is incoherent, I apologize, but here’s the gist of what I wanted to say: While I’m okay with using “Booth has a girlfriend” as a way to move the characters forward, I am not at all satisfied with the way the writers for the show actually executed it.

  3. Hannah was pointless. There is nothing left to say about her. She added nothing to this season and nothing was gained by her being on this show.

  4. I guess I’m in the minority, but I didn’t hate Hannah. And I think she was part of the reasons B&B finally got together.

    First of all, Booth wanted to move on, he was hurting, he saved her life, there was at least some bond. And while Hannah cannot ever hold a candle to our beloved Brennan, she was in my opinion, a kind of Brennan-lite. She was career focused, not wanting to get married, pretty, etc. But she was like Jared….kind of along the same lines, but a poor imitation of the real thing! So I think she was meant to kind of shake things up a bit for Brennan. Remember that scene in the apartment when Brennan and Hannah both say thank you but its not directed to Brennan and then she feels awkward? Brennan starts to think about what her decision might have cost her.

    Secondly, I never perceived Hannah as an actual threat to B&B. I figured she was just one more GF/BF to come between B&B temporarily. She was just sort of a plot point for me, and I never freaked out that she was there. She just was kind of like a piece of furniture. But I think that’s how she was meant to be. She wasn’t fleshed out fully because she was only there for a limited time, she wasn’t a series regular. So her loose ends haven’t bothered me as much as let’s say Zach/Gormogon.

    Finally, I kind of liked them putting Hannah and Brennan together as friends. They were kind of similar so it made sense, and it was kind of fun seeing awkward Booth at the two of them being friends. And it made it harder for Brennan to compartmentalize. Booth at work, she didn’t have to think about Hannah. But if she socialized with Hannah, it but Booth/Hannah more forefront in her mind. I truly think it did help to precipitate Brennan’s regrets confession.

    Yes, I could see them doing a bit more with her character but I would just be nitpicking. I was OK with Hannah, I thought it did bring up interesting reactions of both B&B, and now Hannah’s gone and B&B are together, so isn’t that really all that matters in the end? 🙂

    • I wrote my comment before reading yours. In the beginning, I HATED Hannah. Now I think of it as similar to what you said – just one more GF/BF to come between B&B temporarily.

  5. I think they COULD have made Hannah an important plot point in the journey of B&B by making one or both of them realize how much they meant to each other but that just DIDN’T happen. At this point, I think it’s important to view it this way: take your reasons for bringing Sully into the picture for Brennan back in Season 2 and apply it to Booth & Hannah. Don’t expect any more or any less than that. I think that because the 100th episode happened and we have the culmination of six seasons of B&B relationship, we expected more out of the Booth & Hannah storyline (and in my personal opinion, we SHOULD have received more out of the storyline). I understand that many people on this forum have said that Booth & Hannah has a much more serious relationship. This may be true, but, to Brennan, Sully was pretty serious for her.

  6. I agree that Booth and Brennan would have been together with or without Hannah. My next statement is going to make everyone throw rotten tomatoes at me, but during the Hannah mess, I saw a different Booth. The very beginning of season 6, showed a happy Booth. I don’t remember seeing a happy Booth for that long a time, in any of the previous seasons.

    Booth was always portrayed as wistful, and longing. He wanted to be with Brennan, but because both of them were scared of their feelings, neither of them tried, so they just danced around their feelings for 5 years.

    I have only watched the season 6 episodes maybe twice, so there is probably a lot I missed, but IMO, Booth did seem happy. His relationship wasn’t forced, and he was able to express the romantic side of his personality.
    I think Booth has a strong romantic side, but he knows he can’t express that with Brennan, so it was nice to see that. Please stop throwing the tomatoes now.

    I think the DitP, episode would have happened whether or not Hannah was there. Brennan was building toward a breakdown for a long time, and IMO, it was needed. I am glad they showed that. I am glad they didn’t just gloss it over, and say it happened even though we didn’t see it.

    The reason I say this is because they never showed her being the least bit jealous, and I think Brennan had grown as a character enough, so that she would have felt jealousy, as in CitC, where she expressed jealousy over the ability for others to have love.
    I agree that Brennan is not cruel of vindictive, so that confession was just her way of saying; I regret what could have been.

    I think the ‘center’, revolves around them in that they are the center, and through their feelings and passion, they pull everyone into what they have. The way our sun pulls the planets into orbit.

    I also think that Booth pulled away from Brennan because he realized that he needed to, for his own peace of mind. This is a man, who has loved this woman for three years. He has waited for her to catch up to him, and he needed the time in Iraq, to pull himself away. He needed to use that ability, which he has, to compartmentalize his feelings.
    I agree that he loved Hannah, as he said there are different types of love, and his love for Hannah, although not the true, met my split apart(reserved for Brennan), kind of love, was real. However, he loved Brennan more. I just think he wanted something that he thought she would never be able to give him, so he looked for that in Hannah.

    The marriage proposal was way out in left field though. I still don’t understand why he proposed. I don’t think he wanted to be with Hannah forever, so the proposal makes no sense to me, and the idea that I have heard, that he did it to get rid of her, is stupid. Sorry if I hurt anyone’s opinion.

    If Hannah hadn’t been around, would Booth have acknowledged Brennan’s regret, but been strong enough to say something like, “The last thing I want to do is hurt you, but I just can’t, Bones. I can’t go there again.”

    This would have been a great plotline for season 6. The idea that Booth struggles to move on, despite Brennan, and she sees the pain she has caused him, and realizes that she needs to accept the love she feels for him, and then take that step toward him. Then we would have waited for Booth to catch up to her, and it would have fit with the rest of the series, in that they would have exchanged places, more or less.

    I have gone too long, and I apologize for the rambling, but I am still so angry over these issues. Thanks, Seels for posting this, and letting me ramble.

    • No tomatoes thrown. I think that Booth asked Hannah to marry him for the simple reason that he had put a lot of himself into this relationship with Hannah. Like you said, he was happy (or at least he thought he was happy although I think he may have not been – sea shell scene at the diner) and wanted to continue that happiness. He asked Hannah to marry him because it was a natural progression. I also firmly believe that Sweets saying that he didn’t want to be old (like Booth) and not married caused Booth to realise that he didn’t want to be as old as he was and unmarried either. He should have sat down and talke to Hannah about it and that is where he made his big mistake. On the other hand, I am glad that Hannah said no. I firmly believe that Booth will be very happy now that he has Brennan in his life. He loves her and now that they are intimate partners as well as working partners, we will see a happy Booth.

      • I see what you’re saying, and I agree that Booth was wistful in the later episodes, but I think some of it was because he was wondering what could have been. He knew Hannah was the safe choice, and he was going with that choice. My idea of the whole marriage thing is the same as yours, because I believe he did it as a reaction to what Sweets said, but although Booth can be impulsive at times, and maybe it was just an impulsive move on his part.
        I know it has never been said on the show, but I always thought Booth took marriage to be, ‘until death do us part’. That is the Catholic way, and this decision seems too important to be impulsive.

        I am also glad Hannah said no, because I think I would have maybe stopped watching if she stayed on the show.

      • No tomatoes from me either. I think Booth was shown to be happy and in love and committing to Hannah. Which is fine! He has that right. Brennan didn’t say wait for me or fight for me she said no, thanks, and by the way, I’m going away for a year and I’m not going to contact you in any way.

        Which was her right too. Neither of them did anything wrong.

        My issue with Hannah was that since we were shown a Booth in love with Hannah, how does he become the Booth who is back in love with Brennan, making wishes with her a month after Hannah is gone and having a child with her four months later? We didn’t see that onscreen.

        I know that I am supposed to know Booth never stopped loving her. But it was not shown on screen.

  7. hmm this one is difficult for me, because primarily, I do think Hannah had a lot to do with Brennan coming to her realisation.

    I agree with you that just because ‘thing A’ happened before ‘thing B’, that doesn’t automatically mean that ‘thing C’ happened because of ‘thing A’.

    However, in this instance I honestly feel that watching Booth be happy with Hannah was the wake-up call Brennan needed. She finally realised what she’d turned down, and what turning it down would actually mean for her life going forward. I don’t buy the argument that Booth wasn’t that serious about Hannah until she showed up in DC for the simple reason that she was the first thing he told Brennan about. You don’t carry someone’s photo in your wallet and tell others that you’re ‘serious as a heart attack’ about someone if actually they were just a roll in the Afghan hay. Especially if you’re almost pathologically private like Booth is.

    I don’t think the storyline would have had the same effect if Booth had been single. We’d watched him try to do that around her for the last 3rd of season 5 and it didn’t work. It ended in catastrophic emotional pain for Booth. He had to make a change and so he did.

    I think Brennan made that confession in the car because of Hannah. That’s why she knew it was a big risk to take, it’s why it was so brave to do it. Not that she thought for a moment that Booth would have any different response to the one he had, but because it made her realise what she wanted with him. The only possible reason Booth said no is because he was committed to someone else. I don’t care who you are, if the person you have loved is crying about not being with you, saying they don’t want to live with regrets and you’re single, you’re going to stop the damn car. To me, Brennan said what she did because of Hannah and Booth said what he said because of Hannah.

    I think Booth needed to get to a place where he wasn’t so ‘dazzled’ with Brennan that he was blinded by her. There have been times when she’s behaved really quite badly and he’s never called her on it. Towards the end of season 6, he wasn’t so ‘puppy-dog eyes’ around her, they were much more even.

    I didn’t particularly warm to Hannah. She was a bit annoying and clearly every woman’s nightmare as competition in the romance stakes ha. But I understood why she was there and what she eventually prompted. She was a hiccup. And (on purpose or not I’m not sure) DB actually did a brilliant job of making the scenes she was in ever so slightly uncomfortable. I’ve always maintained that he could create sexual chemistry with a lamppost, so he really did very well keeping an edge of awkward in there.

    I’ll be honest, Sully upset me more back in the day.

    There’s more I could say, but I have to run to the gym, so I’ll catch you all in a bit!

    • “The only possible reason Booth said no is because he was committed to someone else. I don’t care who you are, if the person you have loved is crying about not being with you, saying they don’t want to live with regrets and you’re single, you’re going to stop the damn car.”

      Sophia, I think you are right on point with this observation. I’m not sure I see any other situation where Booth wouldn’t have at least stopped the car and tried to comfort Brennan.

  8. I think Hannah was supposed to be the catalyst for bringing Booth and Brennan together.

    However, as you point out Sarah, as it appeared on the show, the same sequence of events could have occurred with or without her.

    It seems to me that what TPTB were trying to do was create a love triangle without any of the traditional negative emotions associated with it (jealousy, rivalry, competition). Which is admirable. I would not have wanted to see Brennan and Hannah in a Alexis and Krystle Carrington style throwdown.

    But in their efforts to do that, they drained the triangle of any tension. Brennan accepted Hannah, Hannah accepted Booth and Brennan’s relationship, Booth accepted Hannah and Brennan’s friendship and the whole thing was just….blah.

    • I was going to write the very same thing about the triangle. They publicly said it wasn’t going to be cat -fight, jealousy, etc., but it ended up being nothing – and not in a good way.

    • I thought it was interesting in that they had Hannah and Brennan become friends. It helped blur that line between professional life and personal life of B&B so that they couldn’t compartmentalize each other into just a work zone. Same as with Sully, in that he worked with Booth, so Booth had constant reminders of Brennan’s BF, just as Brennan was constantly reminded that Booth had a GF, since she saw Hannah and Booth together socially.

      I’m not saying im Hannah’s number one fan, I’m just saying that I think she did serve some purpose while she was on the show.

  9. The Hannah story was poorly written and poorly executed. When the show’s creators have to tell me in interviews what I’m seeing, then I know they are not even sure that what they intended is what they created. BTW, what they told me I was supposed to be seeing was not even close to what was on my screen.

    The one thing I will say about Hannah, though, is that it resulted in DB’s finest performance. He likely won’t be nominated for an Emmy, b/c it’s always the same nominees, but no one deserves a nomination more than him – for that one scene in particular but also for the season as a whole.

    • Huronia, that was one of my absolute favorite performances on the entire show; it still leaves me feeling like I was hit in the gut. I agree about the nominations, but what can you do. There’s always been a prejudice against nominating anything with a vaguely scifi feel; just ask the people on Buffy which was a top critics’ favorite, but never won anything. Same will probably happen with John Noble on Fringe, who had one of the most solid, amazing performances on tv this entire year.

  10. I’m aiming to make this comment a little shorter than the first one, but we shall see.

    Hannah. Oh where do I start? I guess at the beginning…which would be last summer when I first read that Booth would be getting a significant other in season six. I’m actually really grateful for that spoiler because as much as I raged and moaned and gnashed my teeth about how utterly horrible it all was, I had plenty of time to get over it before the season started. HH did acknowledge in an interview that he could have gone in another direction, but that’s kind of a moot point because he chose not to. And since there was absolutely nothing I could do about it, I decided for my own peace of mind to let it go and stop getting upset about it.

    That’s not to say that I loved Hannah. I thought KW gave a couple really good performances (the phone conversation with Brennan in Maggots and her conversation with Parker in The Twisted Bones in the Melted Truck come to mind) but overall, I wasn’t all that impressed with her portrayal. And yeah, I think her character could have been written better. There were some terrible scenes (sunglasses without a doubt) and there were some painful scenes (the proposal). Bottom line: I was relieved to see her go at the end of Daredevil.

    But I don’t think she was completely expendable either. I’m probably one of the few people who doesn’t think Brennan came back from Maluku ready and willing to try a relationship with Booth. I don’t think that came until The Doctor in the Photo. While I think it’s probably true that Brennan would have had her breakthrough in Doctor regardless of Hannah, I think Hannah helped her understand that what she had with Booth prior to the end of season five was way more than just a partnership. Sometimes you don’t understand what you really want until you’ve lost it. That first-hand knowledge is what made her regret so real. Could some of that have been accomplished through Booth having some sort of personal crisis (Broadsky, Pops dying, his dad, etc.) that pushed him over the edge and caused him to pull away from her? Perhaps. But I’m not sure it would have had the same impact on either of them.

    As far as the proposal is concerned, I’m not as bothered by the fact that Booth proposed (I figured it would get to that point eventually) as I was bothered by the fact that the promo implied that he was conflicted when that’s not the way it played out at all. But then Fox has a history of misleading Bones promos, so what can you do? I don’t think the proposal had anything to do with him not loving Brennan or loving Hannah more, I think he believed Hannah was the safe option and he went with it. He was wrong, of course, but it’s a fairly simple explanation and I don’t think it’s an unreasonable one.

  11. I loved your post, Sarah. You said everything I’ve been thinking throughout season 6, but much more cohesively than I could ever have worded it. But then I don’t tend to word things well when I’m angry and Hannah made me furious. She was absolutely unnecessary in my opinion…a lazy fix for the writers to stall B&B yet another season. As you suggested, there were many other options (roadblocks) that could have been used to serve this purpose, with much less damage inflicted on the show and its characters. A significant other at this point in the game was just lame. I stomached her presence. I watched as she kissed Booth in THEIR DINER, as they related the fig tree encounter (didn’t need those details, thanks!), as Parker accepted her, and even as they went at it in bed–more than once (images I’ll forever be trying to wipe from my mind). And all of this while poor Brennan looked on (well, not the bedroom scenes, but all I can say is small miracle there). This is probably venturing into part three of the post, but it seemed much more “punishment” than was deserved–for Brennan and for us faithful viewers / shippers.
    For me, it didn’t build the B&B relationship at all, but served more to tear down what I’d seen being so carefully built in previous seasons. After it was broken, did they build it stronger? In my opinion, no. The writers did not take the time or effort to show us that. Did I want to see B&B in bed? Sure (and not the porn version, thank you very much, SN) But I would much rather have seen an honest, open discussion about how each of them really felt about Hannah. Some things are better left unsaid, My Aunt Agnes!
    I guess my biggest questions are:
    1, After watching Booth be so happy /in love with and (OUCH) ready to marry Hannah, how are we viewers supposed to believe that Brennan is really the love of his life and the one he’ll always love ‘the most?” Hannah was extremely in-your-face blatant. To fully recover, I needed something not-so-subtle for B&B. And no, the pregnancy wasn’t it. (Though I can’t make my self hate the story line, much as I’d like to.)
    2. How is the B&B baby supposed to be significantly different from the situation with Parker? I know Booth has grown a lot in 10 years and Bones is not Rebecca, But, if anything Bones is probably more independent than Rebecca. For this question, I’ll give the writers season 7 to answer, but after not getting a satisfactory resolution to question 1, I don’t really expect it to be addressed.
    Do I still love Bones? Sure! More than any other TV show in the past 25 years. Is season 6 a part of that love? Nope, but I still hold out hope that season 7 will be.

  12. Oh, Hannah. You may have convinced me that Brennan may not have needed Hannah, but now it seems like Booth did. Forget plot devices, I think it made perfect sense that Booth went with what made him happy at the time. He didn’t plan on meeting someone else; it just happened. And considering everything that was going on at the time I think he was in a pretty low place. I think the scenario you played out of no SO can’t really be assumed, though. After the 100th I was not thinking “This is a perfect opportunity for Booth’s character development.” He was crushed, yes, but I actually think his rock-bottom moment was in Daredevil. And most people (unfortunately) don’t make changes until they reach rock-bottom. I also don’t think Booth would have automatically pulled Brennan into his arms in tDitP. It still could have taken him a lot of time for him to believe her. She was really adamant about not being able to change before, and all she said was that she made a mistake, but he wouldn’t have been able to know for sure that she had changed between those conversations. Also, Booth moving on with not much changed between him and Brennan was not really working satisfactorily for both at the end of S5, so I see no reason why it would have worked out better in S6.

    Like many others have said, even being okay with idea of Booth having a SO, the actress just did not fit well at all with the rest of the cast for me. I don’t think that was all intentional. And I go back and forth on her development. She wasn’t developed well or enough, and yet I really would not have cared to see them delve more into her character. We saw enough of her as it was. I certainly don’t want to give more credit to Hannah than she deserves.

    Somebody mentioned that they didn’t make the love triangle this huge thing. And while I love that nobody was petty, it did make it rather boring. But I was never hugely bothered with Brennan and Hannah doing things together. I got it. And it’s not even like they were BFF’s. They just didn’t have anything against the other, and could actually enjoy the other’s company if they didn’t focus on the fact that they loved the same man (even though I question Hannah’s love – I personally think she just really liked him and was satisfied, which come to think of it, is closer to Cam’s feelings.)

    I personally don’t think Hannah was supposed to be that important, which would just support what you say in your post. I think it was just about curiosity about what the characters would do with a shifted dynamic. The show writers have always said it’s just about Booth and Brennan – that is the central relationship. I think it was talked about so much because fans got worried and upset about it and they wanted diffuse fans’ concerns.

    However, I was really shocked with how she left, and how it didn’t take long for Booth to talk about “love, fate, and happiness” with Brennan with excitement. I actually think he got over Hannah fairly quickly, maybe even by the time he sobered up after his time in the bar.

    I could write more, but I think this is enough for now, and I’m going to get some food.

  13. There are definitely other ways the show could have had Brennan and Booth get together without having the Hannah arc. The Hannah story line was one of the worst story arcs I can remember. We have come to expect so much from Bones and to see it fall so far short is heart-crushing. I’m not familiar with the actress from other roles but even though she’s beautiful, in this role she is stiff and uninteresting — not Booth’s type at all. I guess I could see Hannah and Brennan making an effort to become friends but to actually BE friends is another thing altogether. I never trusted Hannah’s motivations so it seems odd that Booth would have trusted her or loved her. Maybe he was settling for a life with her like Brennan was settling for a life alone. But if he was settling, the proposal and his devastation at her rejection don’t ring true. I am just glad the Hannah arc is over and we (and B&B) can move forward.

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