Bones fans will get a double dose of action this week.
The show will air a new episode on Monday (8/7c, Fox) before shifting into its new timeslot (Fridays at 8/7c) later in the week. And even though lead characters Dr. Temperance Brennan (Emily Deschanel) and FBI agent Seeley Booth (David Boreanaz) recently got married, executive producer Stephen Nathan insists the show is nowhere near finished.
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"It is a new era, but we never thought [the wedding] was the end," Nathan tells TVGuide.com. "We always felt that the marriage was an integral part of their story, but it wouldn't really compromise the show. These characters are so different — that's what sustains the show. Now, in a strange way, they are more honest with each other and their differences can be heightened. But they are dealt with as two people who love each other."
And while the coupling of Booth and Brennan may no longer provide the drama it once did, the characters as individuals still have room to grow. "Brennan is still incredibly handicapped with emotions," Deschanel says. "That's something she really needs to work on. In future episodes, Brennan encounters characters who are like her in their coldness or their inability to feel emotions, and at some point she can recognize that she's like them and see herself from an outside perspective."
Brennan will get her first shot on Monday's episode, when she faces off with rival mystery writer Tess Brown (Nora Dunn). "This has been nine years of humanizing a character, of seeing Booth's influence on Brennan. She is starting to realize — sometimes — her effect on people. She is starting to understand the inner workings of human behavior and interaction in a way that she hasn't in the past. Just as Booth is starting to understand reason and logic in a way that he has never looked at it before, Brennan is understanding the rules of the heart."
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On Friday's episode, Brennan will have to contend with how she's perceived by those around her when she serves as a juror. "There is no juror like Brennan," Nathan says. "You can imagine somebody who feels they're somewhat infallible being on a jury. Most people are mystified by her, as is the judge. While it's very funny, it's also a very difficult process for her and she has to accept things that she has done in the case that she has to resolve."
But Brennan dealing with her social awkwardness won't be represented negatively. In fact, when the Jeffersonian team investigates the murder of a physicist's (Richard Schiff) daughter, Brennan is the only one who can get through to the grieving parent.
"Usually, the human aspect of the show — the understanding — goes to Booth. But there are some people that only Brennan can understand. She can understand the difficulty these people have. There are people who struggle in a way that Brennan struggles. So, it's particularly emotional to watch that happen."
Although Nathan admits the next string of episodes feels a bit Brennan-centric, there will be plenty for Booth to wrestle with later in the season, including the return of Freddie Prinze Jr. as his former friend-turned-CIA agent. "He is definitely coming back," Nathan says. "That's going to be a great episode for Booth. It also will examine Booth and Brennan's relationship now that they have a child and they are married. What does that mean when both of them are in danger?"
But the show will still have room for fun. On Monday's episode, Hodgins (TJ Thyne) will have an amusing turn as he plays mommy to a fly larva. And the Nov. 22 episode will find Angela (Michaela Conlin) finally throwing Brennan the bachelorette party she deserves.
"Angela insists that everything happened so fast that Brennan didn't get all she deserved," Nathan says. "Angela is determined to give her a bachelorette party she wouldn't forget and she succeeds. All of the women who go out for the bachelorette party are greeted with a situation they didn't expect."
And more importantly, the episode will finally put to rest the ongoing tensions between Booth and Angela in the wake of him (initially) turning down Brennan's marriage proposal thanks to a threat from serial killer Pelant (Andrew Leeds). Given the upcoming threat of a new serial killer, getting the team back to a place of harmony is probably a good idea.
"We are doing this in a completely different way than we have dealt with any of the other recurring killers," Nathan says of the new nemesis. "It's not going to be someone who is as visible. Pelant wanted to be known. The next person we meet, we won't necessarily meet. This is going to be somebody who values their anonymity far more than Pelant did."
Bones airs Monday at 8/7c before moving to its new timeslot on Fridays at 8/7c on Fox.