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Bones isn’t the sexiest show on television. It’s never cleaned up at the awards podium or even finished higher than twenty-ninth among network programs, but over its first eight seasons, it has quietly emerged as one of FOX’s most stable and well-liked offerings. It’s never ended a season with less than an eight million viewer average or more than a twelve million viewer average, which is pretty impressive considering it’s been aired on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. This season, FOX will start Bones on Mondays and later shuttle it to Fridays. For most shows, that might be a sign of how little faith the network has, but in this case, it seems to be a reasoned guess based on all the prior movement that the fans will follow.
The last time we saw the gang at the end of Season 8, Detective Booth (David Boreanaz) told his partner/ baby mama/ fiancée Bones (Emily Deschanel) that maybe getting married wasn’t such a hot idea. She shed a few tears, completely unaware that multi-season antagonist Christopher Pelant (Andrew Leeds) was actually responsible for the decision. He threatened great harm for the Jeffersonian staff if our heroes went through with the union, and considering his long track record, there are plenty of reasons to be fearful.
Every season of Bones has featured a primary antagonist who factors into several episodes each season with the rest of the weeks essentially offering bottle episodes. We’ve been given a cannibal, a US Attorney who buries people alive and a decorated sniper among other big bads, but without question, computer hacker/ sociopath extraordinaire Pelant is the most loathsome and scary the main characters have experienced. He stole all of the money from Hodgins’ bank account. He destroyed Angela’s (Michaela Conlin) prized software, and he even tried to frame Bones for murder last season.
Here’s the Comic Con preview for this coming season…
All too often during Season 8, viewers were given episodes that were dominated by gimmicks like the skull camera (“The Ghost In The Machine”), overwhelmed with non-case emotion like when Booth reunited with his mother (“The Party In The Pants”) or made unbelievable by outlandish plots like Pelant turning weapons on schoolchildren (“The Corpse On The Canopy”). For Bones to get back on track this season, the writers need to realize the show is simply better when it’s a straight procedural.
An intriguing mystery, dogged investigative work by Booth, a wacky experiment by Hodgins, an a-ha moment of brilliance by Bones and one bit of surface level character development involving dating or food or a wager. That’s the time-tested formula fans want, and while that might not be super fun to write for the staff, it’s the reason why the show has lasted for so many years. It’s what fans want to see, and it makes for compelling television. Luckily, the above teaser seems to realize that. Yes, we seem poised for some quitting melodrama from Dr. Sweets (John Francis Daley), but beyond that, it’s all wacky energy, gross body discoveries and whodunits—just the way it should be.
Bones will air on Monday nights at 8 PM EST through October before moving to Friday nights at 9 PM EST in November. You can check out a picture of Season 9 guest star Freddie Prinze Jr below, or look at a photo gallery from upcoming episodes.