Bones Theory

Morning After Q: Does Booth Actually Need a Hamlet of 800 People or Less?

54 Comments

Hello and Happy Friday!

Okay, so while I really did enjoy last night’s episode (and have enjoyed this season so far), I thought it was interesting that Brennan was definitely pushing Booth toward accepting Aubrey. It was interesting to me for a few reasons.  While there were times when Brennan definitely encouraged Booth to open up more to Sweets (like Mayhem and times when Sweets stayed with them), I think Brennan has been pretty satisfied being Booth’s main person. It’s not like we see her saying “oh, you need more friends,” or whatever. And previously, before they were together, she would be curious about his personal life and drop little comments about it that showed she wanted to know more, but it’s not like she pushed him toward other relationships like she did here. I think it’s a natural point to making Aubrey a legitimate character that eventually he will be working more with Booth, and they have to get there somehow (and typically, those sort of pushing comments WOULD have come from Sweets, as Booth sort of acknowledged, by way of trying to get her to stop doing it).  So it was interesting to see her actively doing that. I think it also stemmed from her sort of worrying about him and wanting to make sure he didn’t get too…insular, I guess. At the same time, Booth is never going to be the kind of guy who really has a lot of friends. He’s just not that guy. He’s good with people, and he’s intuitive, but he doesn’t trust people. Or, moreso, he doesn’t want to put in the effort of letting people in, of letting them see some of the junk in his past and having to discuss it or reciprocate or whatever.

It’s part of what makes the story between him and Brennan so beautiful, that with her, he was willing to do that–in fact, he chased her down and wouldn’t lose that connection with her.

I don’t think Booth being willing to work with Aubrey means he needs a ton of friends, but do you think Brennan is right–does he need to open his friend circle a little bit and trust more people?

Thoughts?

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54 thoughts on “Morning After Q: Does Booth Actually Need a Hamlet of 800 People or Less?

  1. Oh gosh, Sarah, what a good question to make me think on a Friday morning! 🙂

    I agree with your description of Booth and friends. He’s the kind of guy to have a handful of very good friends he can be loyal to and not the guy who has tons of acquaintances all over the place. And I don’t think he needs to have a ton of friends. He just wants a few people that love and validate him and he’s good.

    I think one of the reasons Booth loves having Brennan as his work partner is that he can trust her to do her job well and help solve cases…but also to “have his back” on a personal level. But at this point, I think Booth is more secure in himself (thanks to Brennan) and when he let Sweets become a field agent with him, he was letting more of that insecurity go. Now he’s working with a completely new person, and some of that insecurity is coming back. Brennan had to give him that little push, give him that confidence to accept someone else into his work circle. Now that he has her to come home to in the MLS (Mighty Love Shack)—we came up with this on the imdb board!—he doesn’t need her to be physically next to him at every moment. He can be secure in knowing she has his back by doing her excellent work in the lab, and that she is his “life partner”.

    Brennan is essentially his hamlet and he is hers. But not to the point where they exclude all others. Having each other helps them be better people and interact better with those around them.

  2. Ooh fascinating topic.

    I think in this scenario the trusting comment is more related to recent events. Booth has become even more mistrustful of the people he works with, justifiably so. But he can’t live like that permanently. At least in the past he was open to working with Shaw and to some degree Shaw and Flynn. But here he wasn’t even open to taking Aubrey out in the field. I am not sure how much of it was related to not wanting to feel like he was replacing Sweets or that he was scared of trusting someone in the FBI. I think Brennan felt it was more of the latter and she is pretty good at reading Booth when she trusts herself. Like Brennan said he used to believe that people were good and deserved to be trusted at a basic level. I mean he will never be the kind of guy to open up to other’s easily. But he was able to trust people he worked with in the army and in the FBI. I think Brennan just wanted him to get back to that mindset.

    Whether or not she wants him to have more friends is an interesting question. In some way I think Brennan is very satisfied being Booth’s main person. But there was also that conversation in Mystery in the Meat where she tells him she doesn’t want to be his best friend. So I am not sure she wants them to be everything to each other.

    But I think Booth is more than content with her being everything. Like you said Brennan is the only one he ever put the effort in opening up to. I see Booth as someone who has tons of acquaintances– like his army buddies and such but not a lot of friends. I think we saw over and over again that most of his relationships were on a shallow level. Brennan is the only one he willingly opened up to. The other people in his life that we’ve seen him open up to were still kept at arms length. Sweets probably became the closest but I do think it was Brennan forcing him to open up that got the ball rolling on that one. I am not sure I would classify Aldo as a friend because Booth still thinks of him as a priest. And lastly Cam– they were friends but I never got the impression they were that close– whatever she learned about him was mostly through observation. Even when Cam tried to push him to open up about his relationship with his dad and Jared, he stopped to talking to her for 6 months. I always thought it was so cute that Brennan didn’t even have to push– she just sits next to him with some cake and he opens up.

    • Whoops I a meant Sparling and Flynn

    • A good observation from Mystery in the Meat. Booth never really answers her query there, as it is clear that she is his best friend but doesn’t say so after her admonition.

    • Yeah, but I make a differentiation between those other FBI guys and Aubrey because he is now in the opening credits of Bones. 🙂 Yeah, we saw Booth with other FBI people, but none really on a partner-y type basis. The rotating cast of FBI people were kind of like the Squinterns. Shaw, Starling, Beck, you name it, they were hardly around enough to get to know. Closest to Booth probably being Sully, but then again, they took time to get to know him and he was around for multiple episodes. Aubrey will be on this show full time now, and he will be out with Booth a lot. So Booth is gonna have to trust him and work with him more than any other agent they’ve had on the show. Opening up to that type of working relationship is a little bit more in-depth than the others.

      • I am not disagreeing with you at all- I completely agree with what you are saying– but there are two different perspectives here- one is the show perspective and the other is the characters’ perspectives. For e.g. Booth and Brennan don’t know that Aubrey is now in the opening credits– so they don’t know how close or not close this guy is going to become like we do.

        The way I see it, Aubrey, like Shaw, just really really wanted to work with Booth. Even when Sweets was around Aubrey just wanted to be a part of Booth’s team in ANY capacity. So in a sense, he was acting quite similar to Shaw. Initially, from Aubrey’s own perspective his role was never to be Sweet’s replacement or become Booth’s go to guy in the FBI because Sweets was still there. Aubrey just wanted to participate. But while Booth was willing to allow Shaw on the cases he was very reluctant to allow Aubrey to participate at all. Even in Conspiracy, Booth was reluctant to work with him despite the fact that Sweets trusted him. Normal Booth would’ve given the guy a chance to show his mettle — but this isn’t normal Booth. This is a Booth that is not trusting anyone in the FBI.

        Of course this lack of trust is intensified after Sweets death (justifiably so). Thus Booth clings to Brennan. Brennan notices this and recognizes (with help from Sweets) that its imperative that Booth start trusting people other than her again. Booth needs some allies in the FBI but more importantly he needs to get back to who he was.

        Lets be honest, Booth is more than capable of handling cases by himself. He needed Brennan for the science but he never needed Sweets and he sure as hell doesn’t *need* Aubrey. But that’s not the point– Booth needs to learn to trust in the world again and who better to start with than someone who has already shown to be keen, loyal to him when everyone was against him and someone Sweets thought was trustworthy. That’s why Brennan has been pushing him. It’s just the way it worked out that with Sweets gone Aubrey has a chance to have a more in depth working relationship with Booth.

      • “Lets be honest, Booth is more than capable of handling cases by himself. He needed Brennan for the science but he never needed Sweets and he sure as hell doesn’t *need* Aubrey. ”

        Actually, it may be the case that Aubrey needs Booth to become a better agent. Booth is well known as having a great record at the Bureau and I think it is part of his job to groom others. Of course, prior to Brennan he never had a partner, and overall, doesn’t seem to want one (Sweets wasn’t an agent, but a profiler psychologist so was never a true partner. Even Brennan, who is his partner is not an FBI Agent but a consultant). But I don’t think that over time he shouldn’t mind being a mentor to Aubrey.

    • I did not take Brennan’s “not my best friend” comment in MITH as a slam or an attempt at creating distance, instead I took it as an affirmation. He couldn’t be her “best friend” because, to Brennan, that title came with automatic limits. Her relationship with Booth transcended those limits , therefore, to her literal mind, it could not fit within that definition.

      • I didn’t mean to imply that her comment was a slam or an attempt to maintain distance. But I am just not sure Brennan wants them to be “everything” to each other. That if they have to rely on each other to fulfill all their relationship needs, if one of those things fades or changes, they’re pretty much screwed.

      • Yes, exactly. She said it herself, that he’s on a whole other level.

  3. Simple answer – Yes, Booth needs his hamlet, but he only needs a few people in it.

    I don’t think that Brennan is pushing Booth to “make friends” per se; I think she is just worried about the level of isolation he has chosen since his release from prison. I don’t think she is trying to lessen or belittle their personal bond at all. He is everything to her, and I believe that she relishes the fact that she is everything to him as well. The opening scene of the episode, where Booth had been up and dressed for hours, show that he is pulling away from her, too. I think that by pushing at the emotional walls that Booth is putting up, she is trying to strengthen/save their relationship.

    I do think that Aubrey is being pushed on Booth a little too hard and a little too fast, but the reasoning behind it (restoring Booth’s trust in his co-workers) is sound.

  4. I enjoyed this show because the writers have not had Booth
    bounce back to his old self but have him still showing the effects
    of jail, FBI betrayal and Sweets death. I like seeing Brennan urging
    him to move forward and not have these past situations effect
    his sleep and his acceptance of Aubry. I think her anthropology
    training helps her understand what steps Booth must take to get
    back to the ‘good’ man she knows.

    I doubt Aubry will ever mean as much to Booth as Sweets did.
    Sweets being a shrink understood Booth and his moods When he
    took out his anger or frustrations on Sweets. Aubry had his feelings
    hurt when he thought Booth didn’t trust him.

  5. As for the root question – does Booth need his village… Brennan realizes that he does but Booth needs to be convinced that he needs it. And I don’t know if he’s been convinced but he’s at least been pushed on that path.

  6. I think if Booth wants to continue working at the FBI he definitely needs to be able to trust someone there. Brennan can’t always be with him and lets face it, she’s not a trained agent and while out in the field, she’s usually unarmed. Plus, having your wife and mother of your kid with you during a hairy situation is not ideal, it can be very distracting for him. I think Sweets’ death has proven that any situation can easily turn deadly and perhaps if Sweets had been with another agent, he’d still be alive. I think Brennan pushing Booth was about getting him to trust people again and not so much about wanting him to make new friends. Brennan trusts Aubrey, he’s certainly earned that trust by being willing to work with them when nobody else at the FBI would and putting his reputation on the line. If Booth needs someone from the FBI to back him up, then Brennan is right to want that someone to be Aubrey, a good and qualified agent who works hard is is just very interested in being part of the best team out there.

  7. Booth seems to have had a ton of friends in the army. There is always ‘an old army buddy of mine’ cropping up in this and that episode. But he refused to have a partner at the FBI before he started working with Brennan and we were never told why that was. Brennan is definitely his go to girl just as he is her go to guy. She does have Angela to discuss things with and now and again Booth had Sweets but for me that was never a very convincing relationship. Sweets was too needy for Booth’s attention and approval to be objective. In terms of the show Aubrey offers a more balanced relationship but this episode emphasized his need for Booth’s approval which I hope will taper off into something less master and apprentice. Really Aldo and Danny were the two characters that worked well as Booth’s friends but who knows if we’ll ever see either of them again.

    • I agree– there was something always off centre about Sweets and Booth’s relationships. Sweets wanted to be friends with the cool jock from high school. So there was always a bit of hero worship in that dynamic. And Sweets immaturity brought out Booth’s immaturity in some ways. Booth needs someone who likes him but also can be objective about his flaws. I thought Aubrey was a good balance between respecting Booth and also standing up to him as necessary. While I think Aubrey wants Booth’s approval I don’t think he is as desperate for it as Sweets was.

      But I don’t think army buddy necessarily means solid friendship or confidante. I thought Aldo was great but at then end of the day Booth still thinks of him as priest. So they could never be equal friends. Danny had great potential but I don’t think we will see him again at least not enough for Booth to truly open himself up to him. I don’t know I think Booth was always depicted as this loner character. Brennan at least had people that she opened up to in her life: Goodman was sort of a father figure, Angela was best friend, Zach was like a little brother. Even Stires was someone we saw Brennan open up to. But aside from Parker, Booth never really had anyone. At least not anyone he could open up to. When his emotion overwhelmed him after coming back from the army he took to gambling. Besides going to confession it seemed like he had never dealt with his emotional baggage of his sniper past until Brennan. So it never seemed like there was anyone in his life.

      • I think you’re right which is why the B&B relationship is so rich. Brennan is definitely Booth’s best friend which is an interesting irony as he is portrayed as the people person who seems to get along well with others and Brennan is not so much. Although I think with Angela we have to give the credit to her for investing an inordinate amount of time in Brennan’s hidden child. As she once told Brennan, most people wouldn’t make the effort.

      • I think Angela has been a great friend to Brennan over the years. I know a lot of people don’t love her but she is an amazingly loyal friend. But I gotta say Brennan was also a pretty good friend to her (at least in the early seasons). I mean Brennan flew down to the desert at the drop of a hat the minute Angela needed her. At least up to S4– it seemed like more of a balanced friendship with Angela confiding in her and asking her for advice sometimes. Brennan’s advice about infinity going in both directions is my favourite line from the show.

        Then of course they changed Brennan’s character to make it seem like it was only this one sided thing…..

        I think the beauty of Booth and Brennan is that they each have what the other person needs. As Sweets said they complement each other. They complete each other. Brennan needs Booth to help her to allow herself to believe in dreams while Booth needs Brennan to ground him– make him face reality when he doesn’t want to because its only when you face reality that you can move forward for real.

      • I see B&B as a Venn diagram, each, as you say, having things the other needs, but overlapping in ways that (to quote Brennan) bind them to each other. Each came out of a damaged or traumatic childhood and each has struggled to connect on a truly intimate level with other people. If these were actual humans I would speculate that part of Brennan’s fear of a romantic relationship with Booth derived from the fact that she recognized so many of her own demons in him. It is truly amazing to me how much food for thought is to be found in these two characters, more than any others I have ever watched on television. As much as I criticize some of the writing, overall the writers are to be commended for creating them.

      • Oh and I totally agree about Angela. Her relationship with Brennan in the first few seasons was a far more equal and I would say more interesting one.

      • EL I completely agree with that. B&B at their core are masterpieces. They have a connection that is something ethereal. I think that’s why I felt so cheated by S6 because it made what they had seem so commonplace.

        I tend to watch B&B as real people. And I completely agree with the assessment that Brennan’s fear of a relationship with Booth stemmed from the recognition of her own demons within him. I actually think that’s what she meant by saying he needed protection from her. Brennan truly feared an inability to hold up her own end of the relationship bargain would destroy him. That’s why she was so careful to warn Hannah not to hurt him.

      • And why Hannah, who had no real intimacy with Booth beyond sex, completely misunderstood what Brennan was saying. Having rewatched that scene I realize that Brennan’s rather touching belief that Booth would give himself completely to the woman he loved did not at that moment include an understanding of the fact that she was the only woman he had ever or could ever give himself to completely. Booth’s relationship with Hannah was a never-ending litany of lies, about who he was, what he wanted and what he truly felt. If he understood ‘Jupiter, daffodil, daisy’ about Brennan, she was just as intuitive about him which leads to the question, did Brennan realize at some level that Hannah didn’t love Booth the way Booth deserved to be loved?

      • That’s a good question EL–I go back and forth on this issue. I think the problem for Brennan is that she doubts herself in a lot of ways when it comes to reading people.

        I do think what she saw over and over again was that as much as Hannah cared for Booth– that she herself could care about his needs more because she knew him better. Like that scene where she tells Hannah to be careful with her life because of how hurt Booth would be if something happened to Hannah. Tbh, I don’t think Booth was all that torn up about Hannah being shot (note how he let Hannah go to a bad part of town by herself and but personally followed Brennan). But the point was Brennan was observing that while she, herself, cared about Booth’s feelings his girlfriend was seemingly unconcerned. She is also saw how absent Hannah was from his life. Then that scene in DitP where Hannah talks about not wanting kids.

        A part of me thinks that Brennan herself recognized how lacking that relationship was. She observed he wasn’t being open and honest with Hannah and she observed that Hannah didn’t know him very well. She knows Booth’s not a balker. But I think she also knows Booth well enough to know that he wasn’t truly happy. But the question is how much of her own opinion did she trust?

        That scene in DitM where– she tells Booth that Sweets must think his relationship is healthy if he was asking for his opinion was an interesting comment to me. It almost came across as if she didn’t really believe the relationship was healthy but if Sweets thought it was then maybe it was. Then that deleted scene with Angela– while Brennan says she doesn’t have the power to make Hannah go away she has a pretty confident look on her face. Almost like, “yeah I could, I just shouldn’t.” She also brings up Booth’s “person you love the most” line, which means to me, that she knew he meant her when he said that. Also interesting to me that despite the fact that this was supposed to air after DitP, Angela totally believed Brennan had the power to break up Booth & Hannah and Angela is the one that usually knows the truth of things.

        All in all I do lean towards Brennan realizing that Hannah wasn’t the right fit for Booth.

      • I always have found it significant that they cut the Angela-Brennan scene with Angela telling Brennan that she hated Hannah. It came too close to how the fans felt. OMG we could analyze season 6 through an entire doctoral dissertation, couldn’t we?

      • I don’t know why they cut that scene — it’s the one scene that redeemed the entire season for me. But I agree, it was probably the “I hate Hannah” line that got it cut– especially since it was her last episode. Plus it might’ve lessened the emotional impact of what happened to Booth- knowing or strongly believing that Brennan had the power to make Hannah go away. In any case I am glad they released it and its canon for me.

        I actually love analyzing S6. It was conceptually interesting just poorly executed. I think what they were trying to do was show a relationship that looked real on the surface but fake underneath– but that is a hard thing to pull off.

  8. I loved the episode! especially when Brennan showed so much concern for Booth!! Aubrey is okay I guess but I hope he doesn’t take over Bones going out in the field!!!!! The acting was superb as usual!!!!

  9. This is a great discussion! What I love about it is that it isn’t just about the particular drama in this show. This is a real problem! http://www.salon.com/2013/12/08/american_mens_hidden_crisis_they_need_more_friends/

    “Of all people in America, adult, white, heterosexual men have the fewest friends. Moreover, the friendships they have, if they’re with other men, provide less emotional support and involve lower levels of self-disclosure and trust than other types of friendships. When men get together, they’re more likely to do stuff than have a conversation. Friendship scholar Geoffrey Greif calls these “shoulder-to-shoulder” friendships, contrasting them to the “face-to-face” friendships that many women enjoy. If a man does have a confidant, three-quarters of the time it’s a woman, and there’s a good chance she’s his wife or girlfriend.”

    The thing is Brennan has a good friend, Angela, she can confide in, and Sweets had become closer and closer to Booth over the years. Now Booth only has Brennan, and that’s not enough. I think he does need a good friend to talk to, and Brennan thinks maybe Aubrey could be that guy. It’s a great character development, and I look forward to seeing it be explored.

    • What a great article. I think that’s really true. Especially for someone like Booth who takes great pains to not want to look weak in front of anyone. But I think it will take a long time before Booth will really think of him as a friend. Booth only started opening to Sweets after a few years. I think for now as long as Booth is able to trust someone other than his wife in the field will be the first step.

      • Agreed, which should make Season 10 a lot of fun. Thinking over all of this, in spite of everything, Sweets was the best guy friend Booth had. The loss has to be devastating to him, even if he tries to hide it. Brennan really gets this, and realizes she alone cannot fix what is wrong. This is not only an interesting character development for Booth, but for Brennan as well who is shouldering a lot here. Many have predicted she may have a breakdown later on — that is possible since Booth is not being that solid rock to her he usually is given his emotional issues. All in all, this is a very intriguing plot twist (Brennan must be the intuitive one, not Booth) which breathes fresh life in a series a decade old. Bravo to all involved!

      • I don’t think Brennan will break down. I think she is in a strong place emotionally. She has learned to manage her emotions and not run away from them. She definitely imbibed some of Sweets’ psychology so her using that to help Booth (along with anthropology) is awesome. Although, Brennan supporting Booth isn’t such a new thing — she shouldered most of it when his dad passed away for example. Sweets knew it wasn’t his place to push at that point.

        But yeah the loss of Sweets along with everything that has happened has been a big blow for Booth. The show has never really focussed on Booth’s emotions for a protracted period of time– so its nice for them to finally go there for a change. And watching Brennan being his rock is awesome. Brennan knows how to handle him.

  10. Reading everyone’s comments has given me a lot to think about. I never really thought about Booth and friends other then Brennan. I always thought he had a friendship with Hodgins of course it was back when Booth was more involved with the squints. B&B together with the squints were a family with B&B the center. We never see them together anymore and I miss them.
    Thanks bountypeaches your comments were spot on.

  11. Sorry I was going to comment on Aubrey. I think Aubrey should be the agent Booth works with and trust but he needs someone else to talk with about feelings. I hope they don’t over use Aubrey as they did Sweets. It felt to me that Sweets was more of a partner to Booth then Brennan the past few seasons.

    • Booth doesn’t talk to anyone about feelings, only Brennan. He never really talked to Sweets about feelings either, problems and issues maybe, but feelings? Nope, that’s not Booth.

      • Booth actually does have people who he can talk to, the show just doesn’t jwant to show or develop their relationship: Hank (think thats his name) Booth’s ex army judge buddy, CAM, his Japenese friend, Aldo, Danny Beck, even Wendell, even Caroline has known Booth for years…like I said, they just never explore or develop them beyond an epìsode plot point.

      • The show doesn’t develop those relationships because that’s not true to Booth’s nature. He is the tough guy– and tough guys don’t talk about feelings.

        For example– despite Hank being his army buddy– he couldn’t talk to him about his feelings over his sniper actions. How many years had passed before he chose to talk to anyone about his feelings? That was probably why he succumbed to gambling as an outlet in the first place. Like he ended up shooting a clown instead of dealing with his feelings over Epps.

        Even Cam, the moment Cam pushed Booth to open up about his father or Jared– he stopped talking to her for 6 months, so Cam knows there is a line she can’t cross. He confided in Aldo but as a priest not a friend– there is a difference. Booth was required to confess as part of his faith to gain absolution. By repeatedly having Booth call him father despite Aldo’s insistence– shows that for Booth Aldo will always be a priest. All the other people you mentioned are buddies.

        Basically Booth is a rescuer personality. He likes helping others as a way to avoid his own feelings. Like making pancakes for Brennan instead of dealing with his emotions. Rescuers/white knights/caregiver personalties hope that by rescuing others it will fulfill their own need to be rescued. But it doesn’t work like that. To allow someone to rescue you, you actually have to make yourself vulnerable and give up control to a degree. But as Booth and GGW talked about Booth’s whole life revolved around having control of things. So to give up control and admit weakness is a really tough thing to do. Look at how difficult it was for Booth to just say he wanted to kill himself as a child- it required Brennan to push him and even then he didn’t open up much.

  12. i didn’t say they were Booth’s BFF, I said he does have people to go & talk to and to open up to if he so chooses to do so…Aldo may be an ex-priest or priest to Booth but he still chose to seek him out in his time of need to TALK too and he could do the same again due to recent events if the writers would open up Booth’s world more…I lol when Brennan said that she can’t just be his world or whateva because that’s exactly what the writers have done to Booth over the years: they open up a chink of his world and then shut it down and move onto something else…. in S2 Booth had to talk to a shrink due to work, to sort out his mind, what happened to him recently would warrant that again but instead of Booth seeing a shrink, the writers want to keep Booth’s world closed off, they just want Brennan to be his go to person (and to a certain extent use to be Sweets, but now RIP)….the same with Booth’s friend Hank, in S1, he obviously knew so much about Booth & his past, hell Booth even went to his house regulary for FAMILY DINNERS, Booth had confided in him but instead of nuturing that relationship to explore that in future eps, they turned it around that he had to talk to Brennan…. Booth’s world is closed off because the writers chose to do so as the seasons progressed after S1 & 2.

    • Again the point is he doesn’t chose to do so– that is classic Booth. It sounds like you want him to be someone other than they have always written him to be?

      For me, Booth has always been the guy that has had a hard time letting anyone other than Brennan in. Going to someone else’s house for family dinners doesn’t mean you talk about your feelings with them. Yes he could if he wanted to but the whole point is he didn’t. He is the kind of guy that needs to be pushed to open up. Hank knew Booth had military scars just as he himself did. As a lot of soldiers know what other soldiers have gone through. But that doesn’t mean Booth had confided his feelings to Hank. The mere fact that Hank told Booth he *needed* to open up suggests that Booth hadn’t opened up to ANYONE. If Hank’s relationship with Booth was that close then he would’ve pushed Booth to open up to him. But Hank wasn’t a confidante for him. He probably knew if he pushed, Booth would close off— the way Booth closed off to Cam when she pushed.

      Even GGW– Booth didn’t willingly open up to him. He was forced to attend therapy. And GGW was skilled enough to understand the right way to get through some of Booth’s walls. It took Sweets a long time to figure out the right way to approach Booth for him to open up. All through their couples counselling stuff Booth never opened up to Sweets about his feelings despite it being mandatory counselling. The only one time was when Brennan pushed him to reveal something vulnerable. So while they could get Booth to go back to therapy, I think, it would be pretty tough to get Booth to open up or see this new shrink as anything other than NOT Sweets.

      Booth confided in Aldo in S9 because he needed to confess his sins and he couldn’t go to an actual confession because he was living with Brennan outside of marriage. Booth needed someone a “holy” power to give him permission to kill Pelant. It was more about problems and issues than actual feelings.

      The story has always been about two broken people that found kinship with each other that they hadn’t found elsewhere. It’s not like they never wrote Brennan to become overly dependent on Booth. They took away Dr. Goodman and Zach to force her to become more reliant on Booth. Angela went AWOL when Brennan was struggling to deal with the emotional absence of Booth in her life. Now, I haven’t been a fan of everything they have done (cough*S6*cough) but this is the story they are telling.

      The whole point is Booth needs Brennan as much as Brennan needs Booth. Booth’s MO is to shut down and go straight into denial when something bad happens until it would eventually blow up in his face. He needs Brennan to push him. He is not going to willingly open up without a push.

      • I totally agree. You can have friends but you don’t open up to all of them. You only open to the one that you feel they are close to you and they will understand you. Booth only open up himself to Brennan, because Booth love Brennan and Booth feel Brennan will understand him. They are two imperfect persons which see themselves in each other eyes and they love each other. They are soul mate. This is what the writer try to tell us.

  13. Sorry if I repeat something someone has already said as I haven’t had a chance to read the comments yet.

    I didn’t really see Brennan as trying to push Aubrey on Booth but more a concern for Booth shutting himself off too much because of all that happened. Though what happens to Booth happens to Brennan to some extent just like Booth was affected when Brennan was a fugitive for three months. I like Aubrey and it’s nice for Booth to have a real fellow FBI guy which I never felt Sweets was – he was too personally involved, immature, and I didn’t appreciate his behavior when he stayed with them. But I don’t want Aubrey taking time away from B&B being partners like Sweets did. It hasn’t felt like B&B have been real partners like they were for a long time. They haven’t spent the time together that they used to on cases, one of the foundations of the show. I think Mayhem was more of a unique situation and actually spurred on by GG rather than Brennan.

    Brennan is probably satisfied being Booth’s main person as he is satisfied being hers because I think they’re both loners. It was Booth sensing something in Brennan when they first met, fate, his intuition, something that made him pursue her – chase her – from the beginning and neither forgot about the other even through the first year apart. Even then they had a pull toward each other. They were curious about each other and seemed to delight in finding things out about each other, the good and the bad. I think Booth is happy being a loner. It’s easier for him. Less stressful. Similar for Brennan. They found something in each other that they felt and knew and that’s enough for them.

    The post title reminded me of Neighborhood and Booth asking Brennan to be his Hamlet. I love that scene. How Booth moves in towards Brennan and it almost looks like he puts his hand on her waist or his arm slightly around her. How I wished the cameras had zoomed out a little. They were comfortable and happy with each other. It also reminds me of how in the early seasons Booth told Brennan she had people and how later Booth felt her people were his people, as did the squints themselves. Aliens, Judas, Fire, etc. Also how the squints and Brennan were all Booth’s squints. They were a family. I also liked how Booth and Hodgins interacted and even got personal back then, friendly, and it’s nice to see a little of that back. All of them making some baby steps back toward being family again and I hope that continues.

    I think Booth has a bigger circle than it seems from Pops (dear RW), Max, Jared, Russ, Caroline, Cam, Michelle, Hodgins, Angela, and dare I say Parker, Shaw, Flynn – sadly gone, and more. Also reminds me of the great Christmas’s they’ve had together. These people are still around, show-wise, in the background even if WE don’t get to see them. A good circle of friends and family. Quality, not quantity. I don’t think Booth working with Aubrey means he needs a tons of friends either as Sarah said. I think Brennan’s intentions were more that if the opportunity of a new friend presents itself, it’s something to consider, slowly and carefully. I think what goes for Booth, goes for Brennan as well. They are the same, and they certainly do complement each other.

    • Something that doesn’t seem to get raised very much regarding that first year between B&B’s first and second case is that during that time Brennan wrote her first novel starring ‘Kathy Reichs’ and ‘Agent Andy’. Even then she was fantasizing about him romantically. Then of course there was the book she was writing at the end of season 4 plus all the later Kathy and Andy books. The idea that Brennan was not as hooked on Booth from day 1 as he was on her doesn’t stand up to the weight of the evidence — anthropologically speaking.

      • In the immortal words of GGW: “Yes, one of them is acutely aware of that attraction, struggles daily with it, in fact. ”

        I would agree with you too, EL. And to me, I think it was nicely acted out in the “first meeting” flashback where they first set eyes on each other. I think they had ruined each other for anyone else in that moment. (See also: their first make-out sesh in the rain) 🙂

      • And during that first case it was really Brennan, who was the aggressor. Booth was more than willing but she took the lead. Whatever she was telling herself and despite all the piffle she told Angela, Brennan was always into Booth. That’s the reason she dated a circle around him first with his close friend Sully, then his brother Jared, then his boss Hacker — all lines ultimately led to Booth.

      • All the signs seem to point to Brennan as who GGW was talking about it hindsight. I remember some of the threads earlier talking about that, and how many were convinced it was Booth. I was late to it (and BT, May on both accounts I think) – but reading those threads I could see what they were saying, but I kept keying on that word “struggles”. The later reveal of the vows and the admittance on the novels and Agent Andy (a good clue in the otherwise avoidable Honeymoon ep) seems to bring that more clearly into talking about her.

      • Absolutely EL and bb!!

        As for who GG was talking about, I think in a way GG was talking about both of them but mainly Booth and for two reasons. As relantel said a key word is “struggles”. Booth is the emotional one, the one that struggles with most everything emotionally and with difficulty. He’s very reactive. Countless examples throughout. I think another key word is “acutely”. I think they were both aware of their attraction to each other, but Booth was more “acutely aware” as he’s the emotional one, so he “struggled” with the awareness while Brennan dealt with the awareness rationally and therefore didn’t “struggle” like I think Booth did.

      • I think its the opposite Lindy– Brennan is both emotional and rational. For the most part she lets her brain rule her and she stomps down her heart. But on rare instances we saw her hearts desire come to the surface like writing the coma novel. That takes a lot of acute awareness of your feelings. Especially for someone like Brennan who doesn’t naturally understand feelings. For her to be able to write a love story about Bren and Mr B is very telling. I just don’t see how she could not be “acutely” aware. The struggle for her was whether it was worth the risk to act upon those feelings because of the unreliable nature of feelings and their inherent incompatibles.

        Because Booth is emotional– he wouldn’t struggle. He would just react in the moment. The moment something comes to his mind he goes for it impulsively. We saw the moment his feelings came to surface post coma dream he immediately wanted to act upon them in the premiere. The only thing that held him in check was that he wasn’t sure about who he was (“I am that same guy”). Then he struggled because everyone had confused him about what to do– they all told him to go slow and be careful when his first instinct was to act. There he struggled because he was going against his baser instinct. Which is also why it was so easy for Sweets to trigger him. Booth has a very idealistic view of love– he thought if she just loved him the incompatibilities wouldn’t matter. And when it didn’t work out with Brennan he just transferred over that same approach to Hannah. I have to admit I am still not convinced that Booth wasn’t just in love with the idea of love.

      • From the beginning it has been obvious that what Booth wanted was a home, a family and someone to love him but from the moment he met Brennan it was she who was the one he wanted in that setting — for 30. 40 or 50 years. The whole Hannah arc is so scrambled emotionally and conceptually because the writers changed directions and intentions so many times that it is impossible to really unravel who was supposed to feel what in any particular episode. Booth wanted Brennan going into season 6 and he wanted Brennan coming out of season 6. All that stuff in the middle was the real coma dream.

      • That’s a great S6 summation EL! 🙂

      • bountypeaches I agree with several things you said about Brennan and Booth. But I fall back on my initial reaction when that episode first aired and the actual time slowly leading up to that point and my head and heart felt it was Booth. I think at this point in time a case could be made for it being either one of them. Perhaps it has more to do with how each of us defines “struggle”.

        I wonder if when GG stated his observation if the writers actually had decided who was more “acutely aware and struggling” or if they didn’t know and just threw that line out there to leave Sweets feeling how he did and in a sense leaving the viewers/fans feeling the same way. I don’t think they would have guessed we’d be discussing that line – forever! 🙂

      • El said
        “From the beginning it has been obvious that what Booth wanted was a home, a family and someone to love him but from the moment he met Brennan it was she who was the one he wanted in that setting — for 30. 40 or 50 years. The whole Hannah arc is so scrambled emotionally and conceptually because the writers changed directions and intentions so many times that it is impossible to really unravel who was supposed to feel what in any particular episode. Booth wanted Brennan going into season 6 and he wanted Brennan coming out of season 6. All that stuff in the middle was the real coma dream.”

        This is perfect. Absolutely one of the best comments I’ve ever seen about S6. And this — “All that stuff in the middle was the real coma dream.”….priceless! That’s how I’ll always think of S6 from now on!

  14. I agree with you, Lindy, although I can absolutely see how people could think it might be Brennan. It seems to me that Booth had been aware of his attraction to Brennan for a while and as GGW pointed out, he didn’t feel like he could act on it without it being a form of emotional assault on her. This I believe is the struggle part. I actually go more by the way the scene was filmed than anything else, though. Brennan takes the handkerchief out of Booth’s pocket, right by his heart, and after she returns it he touches it and leaves his hand there for a while gazing at her with unimaginable longing. I believe it’s this little exchange, particularly the way Booth looks, that made Sweets change the name of his book. After all, Brennan’s painful disclosure was for Sweets’ benefit, but Booth’s was primarily for Brennan’s.

    It’s funny how we’re all adamant about our choices, though-I think it’s actually a mark of great writing/acting that there can be two such different interpretations of the same scene.

    I would personally love to hear from SN or HH as to just whom they meant, but I get the feeling they enjoy the mystery and the hoopla surrounding that little quote.

    • Sweets had changed the name of his book before B&B had arrived.

      I actually think what Sweets understood was the fact that B&B are more similar than different.

      You have a point of them liking the mystery and leaving clues for both. However I think the way they chose to write the vows was a clue to suggest that Brennan had always been aware of her feelings. She may not have always known what they meant but at the precipice of death, she admitted she wanted a time and place to tell him how she felt about him. Then the next episode she finds out about Cam and after that he reinforces the idea that they couldn’t work together if they were romantically involved. Brennan didn’t want to risk that connection with Booth over what she feared would be a fleeting romance.

    • I agree with you as well mariu and I can see how people might think it was Brennan too. That scene affected me the same way and definitely influenced my feelings. One of my favorite scenes.

      I think the different view points also depend on when someone came into the series, when they saw episodes, and how fast they saw them. I saw the episodes when they originally aired and for me there was no doubt it was Booth.

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