Bones Theory

Vintage Bones: Scene Study- The Boy in a Tree: Absit Invidia


Hey, hey!

This end scene always makes me laugh, yet I somehow manage to forget about it when I think about moments in the show that I like a lot.

In this episode, the squints have sort of overrun Booth by coming to Wong Foos. This annoys him, because it’s his thing. I like this issue at the beginning of the series–the idea that Booth chased after Brennan (for a year or so), but then was resistant when she wanted to partner up. He finally agreed and though they make each other crazy in a lot of ways, he respects her brain and the results they get when they solve cases. What he DOESN’T want are the squints, yet…by getting Brennan, he has gotten them. It’s such a fun thing in the series that Booth, the ‘family’ man, really had none. Brennan, the independent one, has these people who are just part of her island. One of my favorite moments (later) in the series is when Booth says that her people are his people, and she is like ‘I have people?’, and he gives her this look like “don’t you realize what you have?”. It’s very sweet.

But at this point in the story, Booth doesn’t think it’s sweet. He thinks it’s annoying that his life is being taken over by squints. Haha!

Let’s get to it.

“Oh, no. This isn’t going to work,” Booth exclaims as he and Brennan walk into the restaurant after their case. I like that Brennan is already with him, because I think it was likely they were going to grab dinner and share a drink. But once the rest of the squints are already there, well…just no!

“I mean, this is my place!” he declares and immediately walks over to Sid to try to reason with him.

“As long as they keep it down on the subject of rotting corpses and bodily fluids, I have no beef at all,” Sid tells him. Booth is not pleased, haha.

Hodgins praises Sid for bringing him something to soothe his heartburn, and Booth just can’t deal with the traitorousness happening. One quick sidenote: I have a SERIOUS thing for season one Booth and his edgy, cocky attitude and his face and dress shirts and his hair, especially his hair. So…I’d sort of forgotten about that. Be warned, basically.

“New rules,” he declares, and he’s just so cute when he’s trying to assert some independence! “That counter is mine. That booth…is yours. Everything else here is MINE.”

“Mine. Mine. M.I.N.E,” he spells, in case their genius brains can’t quite get the concept. He sits at the bar and then glares at Hodgins, gathering all of the counter items unto himself until Hodgins leaves the bar.

Hodgins gives him this look like, “You’re a crazy person, dude,” but Booth doesn’t even care. Haha!

Brennan joins him, which I love, because they look so pretty together 🙂

And then she gives him one of her all time awesome ‘compliment that is not quite a compliment’ when she says, “I’ve been thinking about your whole ‘something stinks aptitude,”

“Oh yeah?” Booth sort of snarks back, because he’s sure that whatever she is going to say is not complimentary, and he’s just not in the mood. He’s still not single at this point, and he considers himself the expert in a lot of things. I imagine that it annoys him a bit that he always feels (mentally at least) second best when it comes to the squint squad. She’s already made her thoughts on ‘his gut’ known, so I’m sure he’s just waiting with baited breath to find out what insight she has come up with regarding it.

“I think you have a subconscious knack for reading body language,” she compliments him. “Stress in the voice, other subtle , yet discernable indicators,” she explains.

“It’s not mysterious,” she maintains. “But it is impressive. And in the future, I will try to record it in an appropriate degree of objective worth.”


On the one hand, it is very generous of Brennan to compliment Booth and to go out of her way to do so. I see it absolutely as her trying to be a good partner, to mend a part of the tension between them. But where she goes a little wrong is when she assumes that Booth doesn’t know that he is skilled at reading body language. I’m sure as an FBI agent, he’s taken courses in body language and the way people act. It’s just amusing to me–sometimes he indulges her telling him what he already knows, and sometimes he doesn’t.

I think we can see all over Booth’s face that he thinks she’s a little unbelievable to be ‘complimenting’ him by telling him what he already knows AND telling him that in the future, she will try to record it objectively. But it’s the good ‘unbelievable’, for the most part.

“Thank you, Temperance. I appreciate that,” he says, and I mostly believe he’s genuine. I think he knows she’s being nice in her way.

But he’s also not about to let her infiltrate his recently self-acquired space, right? After all, what message would that send to the rest of the enemy squints?

“So…” he begins.

“What part of ‘this is mine’ did you not understand?”

I love this look from Brennan above, because I think she’s trying to figure out if he’s serious or not. After all, they sort of have a thing going on, this partnership, AND she DID just compliment him and make a very generous commitment to consider his gut instincts as valid. So why is being like this?

“Do I have to say it in Latin?” he sort of mocks her (as earlier in the episode, she and Zack knew the Latin motto of the private school their victim was murdered at).

Brennan smiles an ‘It ain’t no thing’ smile and gets the last word in, oh, and IN LATIN TOO, because that is how she rolls, and Booth can deal with it 😀 , “Absit Invidia’, which basically means “no offense” or “let there be no ill will” as she walks away.

Booth plays it cool for about 30 seconds before he picks up the card she left on the bar.

It’s a Jeffersonian official access card, which is basically an official olive branch/invitation from her to be included at the lab. And again, I’m reminded that she’s the one with the family-type unit here, and he’s on the outside…not so much looking in, more keeping them all at arm’s length (except Brennan), but this is a first step in him becoming part of her team.

I really like that this happened early in the series…this idea that Booth was kind of bull-headed toward the team, and Brennan was accepting. Sets a nice tone between them.

It’s impossible to fully get all of his expressions in screen shots, so if you have the time and the means, check this scene out. But basically, Booth is very cute and feeling impressed when he checks out his mug on the id card. Then, we see him eating his pie, but he’s also smiling. He’s giddy like a girl who’s been asked to the prom, basically.

It’s very, very nice.

And how about that hair, hmmm?

Here’s your B&B of the Day:

The “Guys vs Girls Guide to Organizing Stuff” B&B

From Boy in a Tree: Season One

Peace, Love & Bones,



8 thoughts on “Vintage Bones: Scene Study- The Boy in a Tree: Absit Invidia

  1. Dear Sarah,
    I could just listen to you all day. I love all the things you notice cause sometimes they are things I notice and somethings they are things that I wish I noticed. I also love the early Booth with the sharper hair and the creased clothes and the attitude. I’m loving this whole vintage Bones, through the lens of a single scene or focus, as it allows us to rewatch (I had already started the rewatching in anticipation of January’s new episode(s?).) but also be thoughtful. Anyway, you do an outstanding, truly extraordinary, job with this blog. Thank you.

  2. I, too, love the earlier Booth, clean-shaven, unscruffy, blue shirts (oh, those blue shirts). And I love this scene of the alpha male marking his territory. You say he’s not single yet but for me Booth was always single right up until the never to be remembered season six. That’s why the territorial marking is so significant. He may have played around with Tessa at the fringes but she was never M.I.N.E. Only Brennan was ever that and it took him very little time to include her in his marked circle. The whole interplay with Zach, who thought he was being included because Booth never addressed him directly, was hysterical. Booth in this scene reminds me of a single guy who is really interested in a woman who comes complete with a whole bunch of underage kids and he’s seriously questioning his interest in her f he has to take the kids as well. A very good scene. Thanks, Sarah, and Happy New Year.

  3. Oh, those pictures…Merry Christmas to me! In Booth’s defense, the squint squad wasn’t exactly welcoming of him at the beginning, other than Angela (who had her own ideas about carnival entertainment.) It didn’t help that he’s a little insecure and inherently resentful of people with a more privileged or intellectual background-remember the “Philistine vs. Catholic” story? It all makes for the perfect storm of bad relations between him and her staff. The amazing thing about it all is that he falls in love with Brennan notwithstanding the fact that she represents all those things he doesn’t like, and then some; kind of like he was being reeled in against his will. And he was always very sweet, even back then.

  4. I think my favorite scene in this episode is the first time the gang goes to Sid’s and Angela almost pushes Hodgins out of the way to sit next to Booth in the booth (ha!).

    And……another blue shirt picture. Merry Christmas to me! 🙂

  5. First, ah, yes, season 1 Booth grooming is vintage good. However, like fine wine, the man is aging well! Yum. It is interesting to me that, on the surface, Booth does seem to be the “heart” while Brennan is the “brain” but I think there have been instances all along where Booth is just as hard a nut to crack as Brennan if not more so. Yes, Brennan does represent some of those things Booth doesn’t like on the surface but I think her past, being abandoned and in foster care made him respect her more. She overcame a lot to achieve what she has become and I think he admires that. She’s the only smart person he likes afterall:) Also, Booth is a very M.I.N.E. kind of guy:) I like in S7 that Booth seems to be keeping his relationship with Brennan very close. Like he told Sweets, there’s nothing he wants to share. Ha! If you recall in S6 Booth couldn’t seem to shut up about his relationship or ask for advice or stress to anyone who would list how “serious” he was. Riiiight. Booth is more of a M.I.N.E. kind of guy. He has what he wants and ain’t sharing it with anyone. I love cocky/satisified Booth. Booth likes to achieve. Brennan giving him that access card to the Jeffersonian? Score! He gained access and he’s looking good on that photo. Nice.

    • Nice catch on the access card. It isn’t just access to the Jeffersonian, it’s access to Brennan, herself. She’s sharing her sense of M.I.N.E.

  6. What a wonderful episode study! I loved how you highlighted the contrast between Booth being a “family man” but yet a loner, while Brennan is “meant to be alone”, yet she has the Jeffersonian team. They were “everything they never knew they always wanted”. (Fools Rush In)

    Also its interesting to contrast Booth’s early behavior towards the squints to how he eventually came to perceive them. “It was all of us, every single one. You take one of us away and you and Hodgins are in that hole forever. And I’m thankful for that.”

    Oh, wow, I love this show 🙂

  7. I’ve always loved how Booth was being all snarky about his personal space and Brennan just counteracts it with this lovely gesture of inclusion, ha.

    Also, Booth just looks absolutely delicious in that photo where he’s smiling at her after calling her ‘Temperance’ (very glad he doesn’t ever use that name now though). Season 1, darker-lighting, softer-focused filming suited Mr tanned-and-smooth-skinned Boreanaz very well. Very well indeed. 🙂

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