Emotions torn as Bones wraps up
Stars David Boreanaz and Emily Deschanel discuss Bones’ final season – and the series’ history – with
Not many network TV series go for 12 seasons; certainly few that flirted with cancellation for half of their runs. But somehow, Bones has pulled it off, and now the show has earned the right to go out on its own terms.
The series opener The Hope in the Horror, which screens for the first time in New Zealand on July 7, also marks the first directorial effort by co-star Emily Deschanel, who plays forensic anthropologist Dr Temperance ‘‘Bones’’
Luckily, she could draw on the experience of her onscreen partner, David Boreanaz, who has helmed nearly a dozen episodes of the series. He also directed the series finale, and worked out the schedule so that Deschanel could wrap about a day earlier than she anticipated.
‘‘I was very emotional, and I didn’t know that would be it,’’ she recalls now.
‘‘I thought I would be working the next day. That was a bit of a shock, honestly, and I fell into a puddle of tears.’’
Deschanel’s directorial debut didn’t make her quite as weepy, but there was still plenty of emotion involved since her episode featured the return of original cast member Eric Millegan, who plays brilliantintern-turned-serial-killer’sapprentice-turned-psychiatric patient Zack Addy.
At the end of last season, ‘‘Brennan’s been kidnapped’’ by Addy, she says, though the reason why ‘‘may not be that sinister’’.
Millegan recalls reading the script for the Season 11 finale, in which viewers find out that Zack has kidnapped Brennan and is holding her hostage.
‘‘I’m the cliffhanger,’’ Millegan says. ‘‘I’m Luke Skywalker at the end of The Force Awakens.‘‘
‘‘You’re going to learn everything,’’ he adds. ‘‘What Zack has been up to all this time, why he kidnapped Dr Brennan, and you’re not going to be disappointed with the answers.’’
Millegan, 42, says he couldn’t be more excited to be back in action on Bones, even though he won’t give away any secrets about whether Zack is evil or just misunderstood. He says it’s been fun going on Zack’s bizarre journey, from assistant to forensic anthropologist to kidnapping Brennan.
‘‘Near the end of the third season, they called and said, ‘We need to talk to you.’’’ Millegan recalls of how Zack’s first dramatic shift in character. They told him: ‘‘You’re Gormogon’s apprentice.’’ He says: ‘‘I was like, ‘What? Have I been eating people?’ and they said no.’’
Even though finding out Zack was working for a cannibalistic serial killer was a bit of a shock, Millegan recalls: ’’I had good material as an actor.’’
His departure in the third season also prompted one of the show’s longest-running jokes: the ‘‘squinterns’’.
‘‘When Eric left the show, we decided to try different interns to see if we could find one we liked,’’ executive producer Stephen Nathan recalls, ‘‘but after a very short time, we realised, this rotating intern thing is great!’’
For a show about death, Bones killed off remarkably few regular characters, among them Zack’s successor, Vincent Nigel-Murray (Ryan Cartwright) and FBI psychologist Dr Lance Sweets (John Francis Daley), whose final episode Nathan describes as ‘‘brutal’’.
Throughout its lengthy run and many time slots, the one constant has been the relationship between Brennan and Boreanaz’s FBI agent, Seeley Booth, who evolved from reluctant co-workers to spouses with two kids.
‘‘The arc of Booth and Brennan was really the most gratifying,’’ Nathan says. ‘‘There was something so slow and honest about their evolution as individuals and as a couple. You didn’t have to force it or rush it. While there was always this Moonlighting curse hanging over our heads,’’ he says, referring to the Bruce Willis-Cybill Shepherd series that flamed out once the couple became a romantic couple, but adds: ‘‘At a certain point, the tension was dishonest. They needed to be together.’’
Boreanaz and Deschanel agree, expanding on Nathan’s point.
‘‘Booth taught her compassion and love for others, that you have to take your time and not blurt things out,’’ Boreanaz explains.
‘‘He taught her how to see people for who they are, not what they are. She was always very clinical, so he opened up her life force. For Booth, it was being able to recognise the clinical aspects of the job that he was doing. Booth fell not only for her, but her determination and passion for finding the killer or getting the job done.’’
Adds Deschanel: ‘‘When people love each other, they change each other for the better, and I think that’s certainly the case with Booth and Brennan.’’ – TNS
Bones 8.30pm, Fridays, Prime.
Emily Deschanel and David Boreanaz have spent 12 seasons working together on Bones.
David Boreanaz directed nearly a dozen episodes of the series, including the season finale.