Thursday, June 4, 2015

Ask Matt: Bones Departures, June 4th


Question: Everything I read about Bones right now is focused on Booth and Brennan and how long their separation will last. Personally, I'm more interested in the other couple on the show: Hodgins and Angela! Are they really going to move to France? Are the two leaving the show? What do you know? — Kelly
Matt Roush: This is as good a time as any as we re-establish this column on the TV Insider site to remind everyone that this is not a spoiler column. I'm happy to comment on what has already happened on a show (or has been widely reported), but I'm not going to spoil, speculate or tease too heavily about what's to come. I will tell you I've seen this week's episode of Bones, which advances this particular subplot—which clearly seems to have been spoiled elsewhere (I don't seek out such things)—about Hodgins and Angela and their romantic notions of Paris. Several characters make note during the hour, in a very meta way, that they never thought they'd be doing this job so long.
But here's how Fox describes next week's storyline for the June 11 season finale: "Angela is skeptical about her and Hodgins' decision to move to Paris [maybe that's where the spoiler came from? Good move, Fox!], and Brennan and Booth contemplate options outside of the Jeffersonian and FBI." All of which sounds to me like standard-issue end-of-season teases, in this case perhaps amplified by the fact that the producers may not have known at the time of production whether this was in fact the end of the series. (The finale's episode title just changed from "The End in the End" to "The Next in the Last," which sounds a lot less final to me.) So basically, since I don't know anything for sure—and if I did, I wouldn't tell—I'd assume if you don't hear anything different, or unless the actors start giving exit interviews, that everyone will be sticking around for a while longer. Although they may be leaving some of that up in the air for cliffhanger purposes.

Question: I am glad I found you on Twitter and your column again. My question is about showrunners. I have always been a big Bones fan and now I see that they are changing show-runners again. I have to admit I wasn't as crazy about the past few seasons as previous ones, but I feel that may also be due to the age of the franchise. So, I was wondering how big of an effect does the showrunner have. Does he or she set the overall tone of the show, hire their own writers, dictate general character development? I do miss Hart Hanson. I was surprised about the change in the feel of the show since Stephen Nathan has always been a part of the show. — Tina
Matt Roush: Welcome to TV Insider and thanks for the question. I'll admit I don't watch this kind of show with the sort of constant attention that would allow me to make this kind of judgment. But it's a fact that, no matter who's in charge, it's harder to keep any series feeling fresh when it hits the decade mark, and a sense of franchise fatigue is bound to set in. The need to keep shaking things up, as in Booth's gambling addiction causing a (presumably) temporary separation in their marriage this season, will strike many as contrived and annoying, and that's fair. Your bigger question is harder to answer. As you noted, Stephen Nathan has always been part of the show, so his taking over the running of Bones was more an evolution than revolution.

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