There are those who say “Bones” is past its prime. That the show is little more than a basic procedural that likes to show us disgusting human remains. That there isn’t much point anymore.
To those people, I would like to present “The Corpse on the Canopy.” With the return of evil mastermind Christopher Pelant, this episode proves that “Bones” has still got exactly what has made it an excellent show for 8 seasons.
Relive the excellence with this recap.
Pelant says good morning!
You know what’s not a fun thing to wake up to? A screaming baby and a corpse dripping on your head. Alas, that’s what Pelant (Andrew Leeds) gives Hodgins (T.J. Thyne) and Angela (Michaela Conlin) at the beginning of “The Corpse on the Canopy.”
The sinister wake-up call also involves knockout gas and flowers circling little Michael Vincent. Add in the flayed and deconstructed body of our murder victim, and things can’t get much creepier.
“Bones” goes low-tech
With Pelant being the computer genius that he is, the Jeffersonian team has to leave its computer-aided procedures behind. This means a special cover for the exam area, bulletin boards covered with photos and documents, books and slide projectors instead of holograms… Hodgins even breaks out a pair of Enigma machines for FBI/Jeffersonian communications.
Also, Hodgins biopsies his and Angela’s lungs. Ouch.
All of this works. The lung biopsy finds evidence of a specialized gas that only two of Hodgins’ companies make. The exam (combined with a top secret file obtained by Flynn) identifies the victim as Xavier Freeman, a mercenary working for the Serberus company. It turns out that Pelant has infiltrated Serberus using a new identity — Justin Trimple.
Case solved, right? Nope.
Search warrants and monkey parts
Apparently, you can’t just invade a company to look for a guy when you don’t have specific evidence that he’s there. That is very annoying. And it makes finding Pelant that much harder.
It’s the name of Justin Trimple that finally gets the FBI the information it needs. They can’t just do a computer search of the name, since Pelant would know it immediately. Instead, Angela simply spams Pelant under that name.
When the computer genius blocks the spam, the FBI has its location. Pelant is indeed inside Serberus.
Meanwhile, the investigation of the remains has hit a standstill. The team knows there’s a message, but they just can’t find it.
Then Pelant offers a clue. That would be the index finger of a Barbary ape. Because of course that’s the kind of clue a guy like Pelant would send through the mail.
Caroline (Patricia Belcher) finally signs off on a search warrant for Serberus. Because this is a mercenary organization, Booth (David Boreanaz) and Flynn (Reed Diamond) lead in what amounts to an army of FBI agents. They know Pelant is inside somewhere.
Unfortunately, Pelant has access to the company’s security cameras. He makes his escape through the super-awesome secret passage into the Serberus parking garage (Note: I want one of those secret passages!!!) and even fires the security machine guns hidden inside all of the building’s walls.
This proves to be the downfall of Agent Flynn. While Booth manages to avoid the hail of bullets, Flynn takes a whole bunch of hits. The distraction of a nearly dead colleague means that Pelant is already driving away when Booth can take a shot. He hits Pelant, but the wound is not fatal.
Christopher Pelant is gone again.
In which I geek out over a Vesalius reference!
The story isn’t over yet. And it’s time to get nerdy!
It turns out that Pelant also used his military access to arm and program a drone missile. If the team can’t stop its progress, a girls’ school in Afghanistan will be wiped out. Pelant is a jerk.
How do they stop this?
It’s actually quite brilliant. The Barbary ape finger leads Brennan (Emily Deschanel) to the Renaissance physician, Andreas Vesalius. Vesalius’ works include lettered diagrams, one of which resembles the corpse left with Angela and Hodgins. Putting the corpse together with the diagram, the team finds a word: Lyceum.
Lyceum proves to be the coded entrance into the drone’s systems as well as a hint about the target. While Angela frantically tries to stop the attack, we get to see a bunch of cute little Afghan girls learning their letters (In case you were wondering, the chalkboard contains the phrase “God is great” and the letters of the Arabic alphabet.).
Let’s take a moment now to celebrate one Jack Hodgins. Not only is the man instrumental in solving almost every aspect of the case, we get to see his true sacrifice in order to save countless innocent lives.
Probably as payback for that time Hodgins almost killed him, Pelant targets all of Hodgins’ money at the same time as the drone attack. If Hodgins tried to stop the money transfer, the kids will die.
Hodgins lets the money go. Our super-rich scientist is now dirt poor. Other than his salary, of course. And his house and cars and other material possessions.
But still. It sucks.
Yeah, Booth hit him with that last bullet. In a final chilling (and disgusting) image, we see Pelant in a veterinarian’s office. A corpse lying behind him, Pelant sews ugly stitches into his own face. Looks like Booth blew about half of the man’s head off.
Hopefully, someone will get the other half next time.
Cool things they said
- “Flaying and flowers. OK, that settles it. Pelant is back from Egypt.” — Booth
- “Isn’t there some way to just get rid of him?” — Angela
- “Morally, I have no problem with killing a killer.” — Brennan
- “I just don’t understand how someone could do this to another human being.” — Angela, “You’d have to have a strong knowledge of anatomy, a well-balanced cutting implement that really holds its edge, floor-draining would be helpful…” — Brennan
- “I’ll say this for the evil little troll, he always tops himself.” — Caroline on Pelant
- “Word is, that’s what it takes these days.” — Caroline on Pelant murdering a guidance counselor to get into Stanford
- “Money is always the issue.” — Hodgins
- “You think I can just foxtrot into a judge’s chambers with my winning smile and girlish figure and just get what I want? I appreciate the compliment, cheri, but it just doesn’t work that way.” — Caroline
- “Maybe it’s true what they say about motherhood… That it makes you dumber.” — Pelant
- “Pelant doesn’t want to kill me. At least for now.” — Brennan
- “Thank God I am a packrat!” — Hodgins
- “Absence of bug infestation indicates less than two days.” — Hodgins on how old the food is
- “We’re still waiting for him to make the next move, and I’m not OK with that.” — Booth