The show got off to an excellent start. Not only did a farmer run over a headless corpse that had been quite ravaged by time and wolves, but Booth informed Bones he was interested in investing asteroid mining. Honestly, I call that a quality start to anything other than Saturday morning cartoons!
Booth has it all figured out. The company needs about $2 billion in seed money to go round up approximately $50 billion in platinum. The conversation at the diner was going swimmingly well until a bloody and bruised somebody burst into the diner hollering for Bones, and reached into his bag telling her he has something to give her. Not a good move, I mean considering her man is an FBI agent.
After face-planting on the floor per Booth's instructions, he slides his bag over to him and out rolls the missing—and bloody—head from the body in the farmer's field. He, Dr. Oliver Wells (Brian Klugman) is Bones' newest intern. His résumé is about a mile long.
The early motive for murder, which of course I've learned by now is just smoke and mirrors from the writers, has to do with the deceased's '59 El Camino. A super sweet ride by any standard, but his ex-girlfriend really hated that thing and, come to find out, they'd just broken up a week ago, which is pretty much when he died, was killed, or otherwise stopped being.
The victim, Benji, was apparently a brainiac and was, according to his ex-girlfriend Courtney (Amanda Jane Cooper), into deciphering time travel. He wanted to be the first person to ever succeed, and he seemed to have had an impressive amount of gray matter between his ears. Oh, and Courtney really—and I mean really—hated that El Camino. Sweets told Booth she's capable of killing if left to her own rage.
This whole time travel idea, paired with the asteroid mining, sucked me right into this episode. I consider these two things infinitely interesting ideas, even more so when discussed by the brain trust at the Jeffersonian.
Dr. Wells is quite a sparkplug of energy and ideas. Right out of the gate he proves to be quite a handful. He's brilliant and he knows and it and he's not afraid to even tell Bones how smart he is and, if she's going to argue with him, shouldn't cherry-pick facts because he's just too smart for such silliness.
I love his impetuousness. It's not often Bones is challenged by anyone, let alone an unpaid intern out to impress everyone.
Seems ol' Benji was extremely smart and was keenly interested in time traveling to the past not the future, which in Hodgins' mind made him extremely smart because of all the problems Einstein theorized existed when traveling backwards in time.
Admittedly, some of this is over my head, but it was so much fun listening to these brainiacs—even if they were made up by writers—talk about this stuff like it was no more challenging for them than making a sandwich or crossing the street. Next time you're watching a truly brilliant television show or movie, remember it’s made possible in large part by some very smart writers.
A new suspect emerged as Angela was able to figure out that Benji had been logged in to a server at a local college for an inordinate amount of time given the fact he wasn't a student there. His login ID belongs to a Professor Hunter (Tony Pasqualini), a theoretical physicist who once taught at the college and who is also a fan of traveling back in time. He was fired for electrocuting a student. Based on some evidence uncovered by the new intern suggesting Benji could have been electrocuted, I'm guessing he was a willing participant because it has something to do with jump-starting a time traveling experience.
I laughed when Bones, based on a very quick and very accurate psychological portrayal of her by her new intern, admitted to Booth she might be narrow minded. The look on Booth's face, like she had finally uttered something everyone else on the planet already knew, became exceedingly expressive, which he quickly had to cover with a Cheshire cat grin. It really was hilarious and a nice humorous interlude in what, to this point, had been a fairly serious episode.
After a trip to see Professor Hunter, it became obvious he could quickly become a prime suspect in Benji's murder. The high-voltage batteries and exposed wires immediately made the term "electrocution" quite meaningful.
Back in the lab, however, Hodgins and Wells, now referring to each other as "brothers from another mother," decided electrical shock wasn't enough to fracture Benji's ribs and instead run a test to prove he was shot.
The whole episode to this point was tipped on its ear based on this information. So far, no one presented had any gun connections. If you're like me, then you hardly ever guess who the killer is until it's already been figured out by everyone else with whom you're watching TV! Hah! Clever writers, right?
Booth and Bones find Benji's El Camino in a barn up north, and something else they hadn't counted on: another body. Not coincidentally, or at least I don't think so, Bones is able to determine this person died in the same fashion as Benji, and happens to be Hispanic, just like Benji.
Oh, and one other thing just like Benji: The skeletal remains found in the barn next to the car are just like Benji's would be in, say, 20 years! This is freaking time travel, right? Did he figure it out? I can tell you I never wanted an episode to end so quickly so I could discover the answer.
So, with just a hint of disappointment on my part upon the discovery, it wasn't time travel after all. The body that could have been future Benji was actually that of his father. The similar injuries happened for a very logical reason and one I don't want to give away here because it's quite good and I want it experienced firsthand.
And the murderer is never the person we suspect, right? In this case it was Benji's older brother Alex (Maurice Compte), who we hardly saw throughout the episode. Seems he didn't want Benji to have anything to do with the old man, so he aimed his gun and pulled the trigger.
I give props to actor Brian Klugman for pulling off a zany Dr. Oliver Wells without going so far over the top as to be offensive. Based on his placement in the credits he could be a show regular, or perhaps several in a row.
A really fun episode with some great twists and turns; oh, and it ends way too fast. Just thought you should know.
Emiah is a writer for the CableTV blog.