Friday, August 21, 2009

Guest Episode Review - #118 "The Man in the Morgue"

Time for the next Bones Season 1 Episode review: The Man in the Morgue! If you want to start at the beginning here are my Season 1 Bones Reviews from last summer:

# 079 - "Pilot" - My Review
# 101 - "A Boy in the Tree" - My Review
# 102 - "The Man in the SUV" - My Review
# 103 - 'The Man on Death Row" My Review
Guest Reviews so far:
# 103 - 'The Man on Death Row" - Meryl
# 104 - "The Man in the Bear" - ForensicMama
# 105 - "A Boy in a Bush" - Bekka
# 106 - "The Man in the Wall" - Jeni
# 107 - "The Girl in the Fridge" - Jenny
# 108 - "The Man in the Fallout Shelter" - Emma
# 109 - "The Woman in the Car" - Milky
# 110 - "The Woman at the Airport" - Robyn
# 111 - "The Woman in the Tunnel" - Winona
# 112 - "The Superhero in the Alley" - Ellynne
# 113 - "The Woman in the Garden" - Kate
# 114 - "The Man on the Fairway" - sai
# 115 - "Two Bodies in the Lab" - This review is classified as Missing in Action. Please email obsessedwithbones[at]gmail[dot]com if you happen to spot this review or have any information. There is no financial reward but any information would be appreciated. Help us track down our beloved episode review so that we may share it with all fans!
# 116 - "The Man with the Bone" - Emma
# 117 - "The Skull in the Desert" - em-jay
This review was written by Kate.

Season 1 list - all covered, still need 3 submitted
Season 2 list - 1 or 2 free!

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The Man in the Morgue Review and Commentary

Teaser: When Brennan loses her memory and is suspected of murder, Booth flies to New Orleans to clear her name. The two discover that the body Brennan was examining has gone missing and begin to suspect the two crimes might be linked to bad voodoo. First appearance of Caroline Julian!

Review and Commentary: The episode opens with an explanation of how there are still bodies waiting to be identified in New Orleans in the wake of hurricane Katrina. The camera cuts to a temporary morgue. Two male workers brag about their sexual exploits, which Brennan finds mildly amusing. She and Zach (via a webcam) discuss the situation. It’s exposition, it has to go somewhere! Meanwhile, the remaining male morgue worker, Dr. Graham Legiere, subtly hits on Bones, knocking over the instrument tray in the process. Smooth, he ain’t. But he keeps trying (with some groan-worthy lines) and Bones finally puts him and us out of misery by agreeing to get a bite to eat after work with Graham. Scene then cuts to a bloody and battered Bones lying on a bathroom floor. Disoriented, she sees snippets of a violent scene playing back in her mind. She attempts to lift herself up, only to discover her wrist is broken. She looks in the mirror, not recognizing her injuries. The phone rings—her shuttle is waiting. She says her flight’s not until Thursday. She’s politely informed it IS Thursday. What happened to Wednesday, she asks? End awesome scene and roll opening credits.

Brennan is in a clinic, being examined by a doctor. Det. Harding, previously introduced in The Exposition, is there to take a statement. Bones is revealed to have amnesia and a missing earring. A throw-away statement about “no signs of sexual activity, forced or otherwise” reminds the viewer this ain’t Law and Order: SVU. Booth rushes into the exam room over the protestations of a nurse (who is a very ineffective bouncer). Bones claims she told him not to come, but evidently he was as unconvinced by her request as I was. “We’re sort of partners” she explains to the highly-skeptical Det. Harding. She goes over her injuries and amnesia again for Booth’s benefit. There’s also a lot of chatter about her lost earring. (Foreshadowing: A Valid Literary Technique) Det. Harding promises to investigate and leaves Booth to nurse Bones’ wounds. And when Booth gently puts his hand under her chin to examine her injuries, my heart leaps sky-high! Do you see how so gentle he is? Favorite Booth Moment™ #9.

In the lab, Zack, Angela, and Hodgins receive some X-rays from Brennan. They’ll be important later, right now it’s more bad FEMA jokes. In New Orleans, Booth is trying to comfort Brennan when Zack calls with information on John Doe 361, previously introduced in The Exposition. No accidental death for him, alas. Booth chimes in and Angela has a field day with the two of them being together in the Big Easy. B&B decide to get something to eat, while Booth tries to jog Brennan’s memory.

In the usual diner masquerading as a New Orleans diner (they’re more colorful, you see), they are greeted by the chef, who recognizes Brennan. She had dinner there on Tuesday night with Sam Potter. B&B head to the morgue to find Sam. Sam explains the topic of dinner conversation was voodoo and ever-so-helpfully gives some general background on the bad voodoo, Secte Rouge, that’s to blame for the hurricane and possibly John Doe’s murder. He even tells them where to find a rare ingredient. Off to the voodoo shop, then!

Booth and Brennan have one of their trademark fights in the car over voodoo/religion. It’s revealed that Booth is Catholic, although this is heavily implied in “The Man in the Fallout Shelter.” Booth arguing that he shouldn’t have to tell Bones that Jesus isn’t a zombie is classic. I love how she doesn’t see the difference (or the blasphemy). The argument ends when Zack calls with an update on John Doe. Angela asks when Brennan is coming home, why Booth is there, and doesn’t believe the whole voodoo-amnesia-missing case thing at all.

They reach the voodoo shop and interview the owner. More background on Voodoo, Secte Rouge, Katrina, etc. Graham Legiere is listed as having bought the rare ingredient, so B&B head over to his house to talk to him. Curiously, he is not answering his telephone. Could it be because he’s skinned and nailed to a wall? Ding ding ding! We have a winner. Also the line, “Something bad happened here and I got away” is gosh-awful, but Emily still tries to sell it, bless her heart. In seriousness, the body in this episode is disgusting and one of the worst in the whole show, definitely the worst of season one. “The Man in the Morgue” actually gave me nightmares the first time I watched it. Getting back on track…

The murder site is being investigated after B&B called Det. Harding. She asks why B&B went to find Legiere: social call, business, revenge killing? The revenge killing is confusing. Exactly why do they want revenge on Legiere? I’m not clear on this. While Harding and Bones are arguing, Booth spots Brennan’s missing earring by a table. He waits for an opportune moment, then swipes it. Harding vows to arrest Brennan if she finds even one shred of evidence.

Booth and Bones return the morgue to look over the cases she and Graham worked on. John Doe 361’s file is missing. Booth recommends Bones takes real vacations from now on. And oh hey, it’s the Booth who knows Latin today. I love Booth, but his knowledge of Latin waxes and wanes like the moon. They search through the bodies looking for John Doe, while Sam performs a voodoo ritual involving a snake. Brennan happily handles the snake, which will be directly contradicted in “The Mummy in the Maze.” Writers, know thy character! Thou shalt not change traits for humorous purposes in later episodes.

Back in the lab, Zack and Hodgins have a misunderstanding which leads to Zack having a break-though with John Doe’s x-rays. Zack also mentions how Hodgins tries to look taller around Brennan (height unknown, but Emily’s 5’9”) and Angela (5’7” on the show, 5’8” in real life). In New Orleans, Booth tries to get Brennan to remember anything more. Brennan points out it’s not hard for her to have committed the murder, but Booth ignores her. He’s sure she didn’t murder anyone. “Let’s just be wildly emotional and assume you didn’t psychotically murder a coworker who invited you over for dinner.” Hilarious. They find the “voodoo dumpling” on Brennan’s pillow, but before they can fully analyze it, Det. Harding and half the police force break through door. So much for knocking. (“A key! I have a key!“ Tons of bonus points if you know what that’s from.) Det. Harding and Booth enjoy a little standoff at gunpoint, before Harding relents and puts her gun down. Despite Booth’s constant attempts to keep Bones from being arrested, she is…um…unaware of how Booth is trying to help. She offers him her hotel room, pointing out it’s already paid for.

Bones is taking to the police station for questioning, where she tells them everything she knows. Booth gets her a lawyer, Caroline Julian (making her first appearance, though the subtitles spell her name “Carolyn”). She runs over Brennan’s previous history (trained in martial arts, two assault charges, shooting an unarmed man—“he was trying to set me on fire!”) and reconfirms that Brennan is an excellent shot. (This too will be contested in the third season.) B&B return to the diner and discuss why Booth is nice to Bones. The ending of the conversation—“So maybe you should be a little nicer to me, huh?”—is dripping with endearment and eye-twinkles. Always enjoyable to see Booth turn on his charm. Caroline arrives and reveals the tox screen came back negative—Bones wasn’t drugged. They discuss alternative scenarios, but Booth is unwilling to admit Brennan’s guilt. Bones looks over the x-rays and sees her broken wrist did not result from a fall, but from a defensive struggle. Zack, Angela, and Hodgins call from the lab with the name of John Doe 361: Rene Moulton. Angela is concerned that Brennan isn’t back yet. Bones says not to worry, she made bail and the murder charges won’t stick. Angela threatens to come down and get her, but Brennan insists things are fine. After she hangs up, Angela vents her frustration at Brennan’s actions to Hodgins who consoles her by saying Brennan wants to have a full life like her.

Booth and Brennan return to the morgue in search of Rene Moulton. They search the bodies already identified and discover the body of Mike Doyle (introduced during The Exposition and flashbacked to here, just in case you forgot about him) along with Rene Moulton. Det. Harding comes to investigate the latest corpse and it’s ascertained that Mike Doyle was killing while having sex. Remember at the beginning of the episode how he was bragging about his coffin sex? Well, here’s the reason. Bones concludes that Doyle’s girlfriend is the Secte Rouge killer. Sam spreads some special ashes on the body of Rene Moulton and magically reveals the grill of a 1959 Chevy, just like the owner of the voodoo shop owns. He also has a voodoo daughter, as Booth puts it.

Everyone races over to the voodoo shop. The voodoo daughter is in her room praying. (She’s a good voodoo daughter.) Except by “praying,” it’s meant “impaled on a wall spike.” Her father removes her from the spike, while Booth and Det. Harding look disgusted and cover their eyes. Apparently cops are squeamish about impalings. Various voodoo-y things are explained and Bones concludes the daughter was murdered because no one can impale his- or herself so forcefully as to have six inches sticking out the back. This is shocking, I know. The shop owner is the real big bad voodoo murderer. He tries to curse Brennan on her way out, causing her to poke him in the eye. Because no one is scary “once they’ve been poked in the eye.” Which is actually good advice, if you’re ever in a horror film.

Back in the lab, everyone is sitting in Brennan’s office listening to her recount the tale. They debate the existence of magic and spells. Brennan argues against it, saying that objects have no intrinsic power. Booth sits there quietly listening, then shows the missing earring. He leaves the room after giving Bones the earring and a tongue-in-cheek lecture about it just being a thing. Angela asks if Booth’s actions have a particular meaning. Bones says they do. End scene and roll credits.

Happy Birthday, Stephen Nathan!

Happy Birthday, squarechicken. Stephen Nathan turns 51 today. I wonder what meal he will tweet happily about today?

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