Bones Theory

Morning After Q: Are Booth and Brennan Still Alpha?



Do you remember this?



I was thinking about it the other day (and the subsequent article), especially the part when the interviewer asked them which one would be on top, “They’re both alpha,” he (or she) said, regarding Temperance Brennan and Seeley Booth.

ED and DB answered that it would be a compromise, or something like that. But it had me thinking this week…are B&B still both alpha, or have they been watered down to some sort of acceptance?

Is what we see now the broken down/lost the edge and grasping for one another B&B or is this the refined “No shiny baubles” mature and ‘all that alpha stuff was just a cover” B&B?

In other words, have B&B lost something good that makes them…them, -or-, are we seeing something more along the lines of Brennan’s season four birthday toast to Booth–that the quiet man (or woman), the one who cares for family and friends is the real alpha?

Namby Pamby or comfortable in their own skin with nothing really to prove?


Peace, Love & Bones,




14 thoughts on “Morning After Q: Are Booth and Brennan Still Alpha?

  1. I think B&B will never left being Alpha about their lives and profession. The way they deal w/ other people and the bad guys they fight to bring the justice every day. But about each other i think they already found a common ground between the Alpha mode and the situation they’re now. They need this now.Now they’l be sharing everything , they being sharing a new born life together. They still can be Alpha for the things out there but w/ their nearness, trust and love they need be totally open and ready to it. And i think they will.

  2. While I think Booth is alpha in his professional life, I have never thought he was alpha with Brennan. He has allowed her to lead throughout their non-relationship. The one time he tried to dominate *100th* she refused to agree and reset the relationship on her terms *Partners Only* and he agreed.

    She watched him be in a relationship with another woman where I also think he allowed the woman to dominate. Again, when he tried to be alpha and take control by proposing, he was refused.

    Hopefully, Brennan and Booth will be “just partners” in this relationship and by that I mean equals with neither one trying to be the alpha over the other.

  3. I think the wonder that is Bones, is that they are both Alpha in their own way. Booth has his strengths, and Brennan concedes that, and Brennan has her strengths, and Booth concedes that. In that way, neither one HAD to change for the other, because they both realize that they complete each other when they’re together.

  4. I think one of the most classic B&B exchanges answers this question perfectly.

    Brennan: I don’t wanna be a sexy scientist!
    Booth: That’s like ne saying I don’t want to be a sexy FBI agent. We can’t change who we are.

    I’m thinking they are both still alphas and that’s going to be part of this upcoming story. They’ll both want what’s best and they’ll think they each know what’s best. They’ll need to make decisions together and that’s what’s going to be interesting.

    Booth will tout his experiences as his background. Brennan will tout anthropology and any research she’s done. Just like always…brain vs.heart and they’ll meet somewhere in the middle. Too much of a shift for one character and its no longer believable.

    So I think yes, they’re both still alphas. We’ll just be seeing the battle for dominance occuring over baby bottles and diapers in addition to evidence and suspects.

  5. I would have to say that they are both comfortable in their own skin with nothing really to prove to each other. They are both at the top of their field and by definition, Alpha; but, when it comes to each other, I think they have finally come to the point where they are now equal in their relationship. Neither one needs to dominate the other.

    For six seasons, we were constantly reminded that they were “just partners” and yet one was always trying to get the other to come around to their thinking, their point of view on love. Neither could see the value in the others belief in how relationships work. At different points, one has pursued the other when the other was either not available or not interested. They have now reached the point where both are comfortable with who they are and trust that the one they love is in love with them. They also believe that neither will run from the relationship they have now. This is huge for them. They both have been insecure about their relationship in the past. They have both felt the pressure of possibly making the wrong step and losing their best friend and partner. I think Booth and Brennan have now reached a point in their relationship that will allow themselves to be true to themselves. I don’t think that they have to be Alpha in their personal relationship with each other. I believe that being equal in their partnership will go along way to make sure that they remain best friends and lovers.

  6. I believe the magic in their relationship, especially in the new footing that it’s on, is that while they both believe they are *the* alpha, they also both want to, in certain situations, step back and let the other believe s/he is the alpha, because of how they feel about each other.

    I don’t believe at all that Brennan has been leading their relationship to this point. She refused to be pushed into something she didn’t think she was ready for (and she wasn’t!), but she has very carefully tiptoed along the path Booth has been leading her – learning to trust in her feelings.

  7. I still think they are still alpha in their professional lives. They will never do anything less than their best and will throw themselves into their cases. On the personal side, they still each have alpha qualities, but usually understand when a give and take is needed. Like when the alpha side of Booth told Brennan she was staying at his place in tHitH. The alpha side of Brennan bristled, but she let it go at that time. Perhaps for something else she wouldn’t have let it go. I think that their alpha qualities that they are more likely to display while together would come from being protective, flirting, and being competitive.

    I think it’s still kind of early to say they’ve lost it. They were both put through the ringer in S6, so hopefully with them on a more comfortable footing with each other, that confidence would allow them to be more alpha like we’ve seen in the past.

  8. I have no idea, Sarah.

    Broken down and lost their edge seems a pretty accurate description for B&B in season six. Frankly, I have no idea what the status of their relationship is/was by the end of the season.

    And since there will be a six/seven month time jump between the finale and the premiere, who knows what it will be then? I’m not complaining about the time jump, btw, I know it is logistically necessary. I’m just saying I don’t feel I can predict what their relationship will be like in six months.

    I hope it will be less angst-ridden.

  9. Welll…..hard question, because we have hardly seen them as a “couple”. We sort of skipped over that part and went straight to baby! Namby Pamby or comfortable in their own skin with nothing really to prove……If I were to venture a guess based on the past and the bowling alley interactions, I’d say its the latter “comfortable in their own skin with nothing to prove”. I think that lil bit of undercover is to give us a glimpse of what we won’t get to see–dating B&B. Wanda flashing her “engagement ring”, proud of her “muffin”, protective Booth (yay!), and their ease during the cheek kiss followed by Brennan’s laughter, which was totally relaxed and awesome!

    Obviously we are going to have bumps in the road ahead for these two (its TV after all!) but I would say that their years of partnership has already built that ease between them, and now they’ve let down that final guard and got together in every way….I think they just have naturally matured into being comfortable in their own skin, and they can do that with each other more than others, they can truly be themselves with each other, warts and all. She can be abrasive, and he can spout off in anger, but they don’t actually repel each other, they understand. And that deep understanding I believe would lead to a comfortable relationship, and like you said, its the “quiet man”, and to quote the oft-used (kinda) “what theirs is theirs” and they don’t have to justify it to anyone else.

  10. Okay, what is it about DB in grey that short circuits the brain? That pic is amazing; they’re both just gorgeous in it. Must stop looking now to be able to reply… :p

    Aaaanyway, as to the question, I really like what Shep said up above. Well said, Shep!

    To add my own take on it, I think true Alpha personalities tend to gravitate towards each other. Clearly that’s the case with our dynamic duo. I don’t think either of them would find the other nearly so appealing if they weren’t both Alphas. And I don’t think we’d be nearly as invested in them if they weren’t. After all, part of the fun is watching them go nose to nose with each other and waiting to see what happens next.

    When it comes right down to it, as much as Booth seems to dream of the wife, the white picket fence, the kids and the dog, he wouldn’t be happy with a woman who didn’t challenge him and was a mousy little suzy-homemaker type. I honestly think that’s one of the things that fascinates him about Brennan: she challenges him every day, and even when she’s driving him up a wall, he likes that. He’d get bored with a 50’s housewife type… and fat from eating all the pie she’d make him. And no one wants to see a fat Booth.

    As for Brennan, she would never put up with a man who wasn’t her equal in every sense of the word. Doesn’t she pretty much say something to that effect in an episode? Something about how she wouldn’t lower her social status by working with a lesser agent? (I can’t remember the direct quote and I can’t think of the episode right now, darnit.)

    Despite her sniping at Booth about not being intelligent, I think Brennan knows that he is her intellectual equal. He may not have all of her expertise and book learning, but he is very smart. One does not become an FBI special agent (in charge) without having a brain in that gorgeous head. And lets face it, you don’t bicker (am I the only one that hears that word in Booth’s voice from the session in Sweets’ office? :p) and have verbal sparring matches and battles of wits with someone almost every day for six years if they can’t hold their own with you. I think What do you do with this one, Temperance? kind of says it all about that.

    (And take it from me, throwing out a zinger with a ten dollar word in it and getting met with nothing but blinking and a blank stare completely ruins the fun when it comes to verbal sparring matches. Battles of wits with unarmed people are just not challenging. You end up feeling like Darth Vader in Cloud City after he thinks he’s captured Luke in the carbonite: All too easy… Yeah, I know. My geek is showing. :p )

    So, back to the topic at hand… I think the thing about true Alphas is that they are partners. Look at wolves, where the whole alpha male/alpha female thing comes into play frequently. They each have their job to do within the structure of the pack. They might snarl and snap at each other from time to time (and doesn’t that count as foreplay in wolf speak?), they might spend time apart taking care of their own responsibilities, but the pack is theirs and they protect it and provide for it together, each contributing in their own way. (I know that’s way oversimplified, and I have nothing but watching nature shows on PBS to back up my statement, but I like the analogy. 😉 )

    As for the TVGuide question about who’s on top. I think EitB answers that – they both had a turn and were quite happy with it. And I think they’re probably too preoccupied with the uh, task at hand, to keep track of who was on top last time… although I could be wrong about that. 😉

  11. You know Sarah, you make it very difficult for people to concentrate on your post when you add a picture like THAT (and so darn big). It must have taken me a whole minute to get past that image to your actual words. That smile, the undone button, the loose tie…Doesn’t DB look good in grey, and white, and black, and blue, and no shirt…oops, see what I mean? (I just realized that I’ve posted twice this morning with vaguely impure thoughts on my mind-Happy Friday!)

    On to the alpha question, they’ve always taken turns at being in charge, but like Booth said about Brennan to Hacker (I don’t remember the exact quote) “you can’t make her do what she doesn’t want to do. That’s what makes her Bones.” I think it applies to both of them. The only time I think that Booth was about to do something he didn’t want to do was when she cajoled him into donating his sperm without involvement with the baby. Even then he ultimately said he couldn’t (I’m not counting the end scene, since he thought he might not make it.) Now that they’re presumably together, there may have to be more compromise, but compromise is what they’vebeen all about since the beginning. Without it, they wouldn’t even be working together. The compromise moments and what led to them have always been the best to see, so I don’t think that more of those will mean an end to the edge. If anything, there will be a whole lot more at stake this time if they can’t agree. I’ll definitely go with C-Bones’s example from Hole in the Heart. He’s the alpha when he tells her she’s staying at his place and then continues by pushing just a little when he asks to help her with the pillow, but then he backs off. Later he waits for her to initiate “first contact,” both in his bedroom (aaahhh!) and later outside the Jeffersonian. Back and forth it goes. They only seem to hold their ground without giving way when something is really important. I don’t see this changing next season. She’ll want to go on dangerous assignments and be completely independent and he’ll put his foot down on some of these. She’ll want to pay for stuff and he’ll bristle, etc. I’m seeing lots of room for all sorts of edginess to come up. But there will always be room for common ground as we’ve seen time and time again. Gotta have common ground, right?

    PS, I found the following video and I thought it was very charming. It may have been posted here before, so apologies if I’m duplicating. Since I can’t post the link because I’m tech-illiterate, here’s the site: Kiss Me by NineLaiin on Hope it gets you there. As you can imagine, there’s other Bones “Kiss Me” videos, but I thought this one had a wonderful build-up. Hey, we’ve got to entertain ourselves until November!

  12. This is what you get by living in Australia – you miss out on these sorts of pics. But this was very early Bones times for me.

    Anyway, I reckon there’s a gentleness about them now – a mutual connection with compromise. But I would love to think that Mama Bones can still be as alpha as they come with That Man.

    He really does look good in grey, doesn’t he? I didn’t think many people did…

  13. Interesting question. I think another avenue to explore could be comparing the season 7 relationship to what we saw in the End in the Beginning. While EitB shows an idealized view of their relationship, I think it may be accurate in portraying a baseline level of trust they now have with each other. What will be challenging is figuring out how to grow that trust organically, rather than just devolving to sitcom misunderstandings.

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