Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Hart Hanson - on the fan reaction to The Pain in the Heart


"In my interview with exec producer Hart Hanson, Hanson said he was expecting a "violent reaction" from fans. But here he further explains why they chose to make Zack the apprentice: "We had gone pretty much as far as we could with that character. There’s an opportunity with that character to bring in a number of people. We’re not replacing him with a single character. We’re going have a bunch of people coming in and out and that gives us a bunch of opportunities in the lab for humor and stories."

"Hopefully this isn't really a goodbye to Eric Millegan, who is actually a good friend of Hanson's. "We’re looking for ways to have him back as a guest star from time to time. We love the guy," says Hanson. "But you know, best laid plans. Eric’s a very talented guy and for all we know will be starring on Broadway and that will be that. I wish that for him but not too much."

I got this 2nd hand via the Anti-Boneyard, referencing the official forums for the post. I'll try to find the official link soon.

Behind the scenes during the Bones Finale

This video was taped during the filming of the The Pain in the Heart and features everyone but Eric Millegan and David Boreanaz. There is no embed option, but you can see the video here.

Review partially done...there will be a big wall of a text tomorrow to agree/disagree with!

The Pain in the Heart - Review

...is taking forever. It might be Wednesday before it's up. This episode feels very much like 2 big stories, Booth's faked death and Gormogon resolution, mushed into one block.

Please comment on what you liked, what you didn't, what you didn't understand. Anything that comes to mind. I'll post my review as soon as possible!

The Evolution of Zack Addy - How he became a killer

There are many fans upset with the revelation that our beloved Zack could be gone. The fact that he could be a killer makes them mad.

My thought? It makes sense.

Here's why.

Purpose. Zack desperately wanted a purpose. He tried to find it in Iraq but they sent him home due to 'failure to assimilate' and with the idea that it was wrong that the Jeffersonian was the only place he could fit. He needed to find his own purpose.

Note: Sweets pointed out early in Season 3 that the silver skeleton was 'Gormogon's sole purpose. Zack was not there for that but it was a hint if a connection. On re-watching the Gormogon episodes this past Sunday that scene was my first hint that Zack was the apprentice.

Personality. Zack's entire personality, as most people view the concept, was defined by imitating others. His sole quirks and markers were the result of his rational brain. His hobbies and loves all had rational backing. Model airplanes? Applied engineering. Love of singing? Calculated to win friends. King of the Lab? You could see that even when he claimed the title, Zack often had a look of 'I don't get this game'. He played it because Hodgins did. Being correct in his science was all Zack needed. Hodgins even said to him at one point, "If you're ever going to properly imitate being human..." We had all the signs and what they all pointed to was a weak personality who was primed for someone with a stronger personality to come in and give him purpose without trying to influence Zack's own personality.

Most of the people around Zack had someone, in the end. Hodgins and Angela had each other. And more and more Brennan, his scientific mentor and mother figure, had Booth. Cam was becoming his new mother figure but it seemed to be too little, too late. Zack needed a strong guide and his main ones - Hodgins and Brennan - now had other concerns. That left him ripe for the Master's picking.

But what truly made the transition to killer possible? His supreme governing nature: The Rational. The one thing Zack could truly lay claim to was his intellect and rational being. In Season 1 he was asked what he would do if someone presented him with an irrefutable argument to do something others would deem wrong. His answer? Not without checking with Dr. Brennan, Angela, and others first. But they have drawn more and more into other relationships leaving him more isolated, more vulnerable.

Logic and reason were the only things Zack could call his own. Brennan is very much like Zack, but with her strong emotional attachment to Booth and reverence for life her rational brain is tempered by a vibrant heart. This is how she knew exactly how Zack reached his conclusions, without falling prey to them herself.

(Note: I cried like crazy on re-watching this scene.)
Zack: If you knew what I know, you'd understand. You'd be proud of me.
Brennan: I've always been proud of you, Zack. I've never met anyone more rational or intelligent. But there's a fault in your logic.
Zack: With all due respect, you aren't cognizant of his logic.
Brennan: Assumption number 1: Secret societies exist.
Zack: Accepted. Hodgins has been explaining this to me for years.
Brennan: Assumption number 2: The human experience is adversely affected by secret societies.
Zack: Accepted.
Brennan: Assumption number 3: Attacking and killing members of secret societies will have an ameliorating (improving) affect on the human experience.
Zack: Accepted.
Brennan: All of your assumptions are built on a first principle, Zack. To wit: the historical human experience as a whole is more important than a single person's life.
Zack: Yes.
Brennan: Yet you risked it all so you wouldn't hurt Hodgins.

I really cried when they did...

Zack is more rational but Brennan is more complete. She acknowledges, to a point, her heart and therefore can incorporate it into her decision-making. By ignoring it or not understanding it Zack is even more at it's mercy. He realized this too late.

This wasn't as sudden as it seemed, to me. It was foreshadowed heavily in 'The Verdict in the Story'. Zack made mistakes? He could make a bigger one. Brennan is rationally capable of taking a life? Then Zack most definitely is. But there's a difference. Brennan could do it to rationally head off a death of a loved one: brain tempered by heart. Zack could do it on the basis of any irrefutable argument. Personal relationships need not, and should not, be involved.

Zack is not insane and Sweets knows it. Some might rationally try to argue he is in some ways more highly evolved, beyond what society can handle. Science is striving to create robots unconcerned with emotions. Personally, though, I think it could be a bit exhausting to have a robot to which you must prove the reasoning for every command...

We're not supposed to see Zack as 'bad'. For all his intellect and all his logic he never could grasp the one most important aspect of the human condition:

Booth: Brain and Heart, Bones. Brain and Heart.

Zack missed the heart completely. And for that we should feel sad.

Comments welcomed and encouraged.

Eric Millegan and Bones Season 4 - Update

Click here for all the Bones Season 4 Info

Here is what's been said so far about Eric Millegan's future involvement with Bones.

Hart Hanson - We've not seen the last of him
Eric Millegan - No one is leaving the show
Fox Season 4 release - He is not listed as one of the regular cast members.

So...likely we'll see him from time to time but there's absolutely no way he can return to the role he's always held. Even if they'd rehire him he would never get security clearance to do the job. So... Zaccaroni is gone for good, sadly. But Zack may still be around.

Update: Looks like the 'time to time' is a big IF and probably to be very rare. Very sad.

Bones Forums - Eric has posted his intentions
TVGuide - Has posted a long Q&A

Eric Millegan posts on the Bones Forums

You can visit the thread here. He made the thread-starting post but hasn't, and probably won't, reply. Still go let him know he's loved!


10994.1

Hello wonderful members of the Boneyard,
Now that you've seen tonight's episode, you've found out what I found out two months ago. I will no longer be a series regular on "Bones." Creatively, they decided to carry out this storyline in which my character, Zack, was the apprentice to the Gormogon serial killer. The storyline landed Zack in a psychiatric facility and so he is no longer working at the Jeffersonian. This wasn't my choice, but I embraced the challenge as an actor.
Over the last two months, I have been auditioning for some very interesting projects and I will keep you informed as to how it all goes. I'm also planning on bringing my cabaret show to NYC before the year is over. Once the date is set, I will let you know. I want to apologize to all of you for the times, over the last two months, in which I've had to be vague about still working on the show. I know that I told TV Guide that no one was leaving the show and well, you never know, my character is alive and there's always the chance that he could return. Maybe they'll have to visit Zack to help solve a case! I couldn't tell you the whole truth because I was sworn to secrecy by the producers to tell no one about my leaving the show until now. I hated not being able to tell you (it really really sucked) but well, unfortunately, it was my job to keep the secret. There you go. I will really miss being on the show and I will really miss working with my friends David, Emily, Michaela, TJ, John, Tamara, Patricia and company. I loved working with Hart, Stephen, Barry and all the other producers, writers, and directors. I enjoyed working with the crew and it was an honor to be a member of the FOX family for 3 years. From day one, I have read all of your comments every night after every show and it's meant so much to me. You have been my live audience. Thank you.
Eric Millegan

Eric Millegan Interview with TV Guide

TVguide has now posted a lengthy interview with Eric Millegan. I'm going to copy the whole thing here but you can still visit the page at this link.

Eric Millegan Dishes on a Shocking Bones Revelation

080520pre-millegan.jpg
Eric Millegan by Kwaku Alston/Fox
Over three seasons, Bones has uncovered some real deviants, but none of those cases has have shaken our cores as much as finding out one of the Jeffersonian Institute's finest, Zack Addy, has been kicking it on the wrong side of the law. Eric Millegan plays the brainiac lab rat we've loved to love (even through this little serial killer phase) since the start of the show — but possibly not for much longer. Here, Millegan talks to TVGuide.com about how he came the boy who cried Gormogon and what that means for his future. — Sandra Kofler

TVGuide.com: OK, so I have to say this out loud. Zack is the Gormogon apprentice.
Millegan:
Yup.

TVGuide.com: I'm still cringing. How far in advance did you know about it?
Millegan:
Two months ago. They met with me and told me and I was like, "What? Zack eats people?" And they told me that I don't eat people, I kill them — I never reached the eating stage. And I was like, "Oh, My god." But I was kind of excited because I knew it was going to be an exciting send-off.

TVGuide.com: So you're leaving the show?
Millegan:
Yeah. But they said, "You know, you're not going to get killed, so we'll still have the option of bringing you back." It was shocking, and I just had to follow it and know that this is what's happening. Zack ends up carted away to a psychiatric facility, but there is the possibility that the others may come visit me.

TVGuide.com: So we might see you next season then?
Millegan:
Well, I'm not a series regular anymore, but it's possible that I'll be back from time to time. I can't say much more than that, unfortunately.

TVGuide.com: Was this all written for you because you wanted to leave the show, or are you simply following the fate of your character?
Millegan:
Oh, I'm following the fate of my character. It wasn't my choice — it was a creative decision to shake things up and make a good season finale.

TVGuide.com: So you only found out you were the apprentice after the strike?
Millegan:
That's right. About a couple weeks before we resumed shooting.

TVGuide.com: Were there more Zack storylines that would have been pursued, had there not been a strike?
Millegan:
Yes. As you know, at the end of Season 2, I went off to Iraq. They wanted to address it all in Season 3, but because of the strike they never got to it.

TVGuide.com: I was wondering when the show was going to address Zack's post-traumatic stress. I kept waiting to see how he was going to deal with it.
Millegan:
Yeah, I'm sad that we never got to go there.

TVGuide.com: When you first heard about the Gormogon storyline, who did you think the culprit might end up being?
Millegan:
You know, I didn't think about it. People on the board started saying they thought it was Sweets, the psychiatrist. But that didn't even dawn on me. And it never dawned on me that it might be one of us, either.

TVGuide.com: When did the rest of the cast know that it was going to be you?
Millegan:
Not until I knew. After they told me, they told everyone else.

TVGuide.com: Was it hard to keep it a secret form the rest of the world?
Millegan:
Yes. But it's my job to keep it a secret. And one thing that was hard was that Mike Ausiello did an interview with me at TV Guide's Sexiest Stars party, and he asked if I was leaving the show. I said no, and I didn't say I was leaving because I wasn't allowed to. But then everybody on the message boards ran with that, saying, "Nobody's leaving the show!" And I just thought, "Oh no, people are going to be mad at me when they find out."

TVGuide.com: The actor who plays the master Gormogon, we haven't seen him on the show before, right?
Millegan:
No.

TVGuide.com: So was it strange playing Zack as a bad guy?
Millegan:
He's not so much a bad guy. He's more a victim of brainwashing. It's Zack's intelligence that got in the way, because Gormogon rationalized [his cause] with him.

TVGuide.com: Do you think by the end of the episode, Zack really understood how he'd been used by the Gormogon master?
Millegan:
Yeah, I think it really hit him hard. And actually, there was a moment that was cut out of the episode of Zack saying he's sorry right after he explains how to catch Gormogon. Just an "I'm sorry." I saw the cut, and realized they'd cut that out and was like, "No! Zack has to say he's sorry!"

TVGuide.com: What have you've enjoyed most about working on this show?
Millegan:
Working with the people. David [Boreanaz], Emily [Deschanel], T.J.[Thyne], Michaela[Conlin] and Tamara [Taylor] have been just wonderful to work with, and we really bonded very closely. Emily and I are even going to be singing "I Got You Babe" together at an AIDS benefit in August. So I'm still going to be bonded to them.

TVGuide.com: I think fans are going to feel like there's an important chunk of the family missing.
Millegan:
I hope so. I hope people miss me.

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