[INSERT INTERRUPTION: Um. For someone who didn't take any notes and could have sworn she'd forgotten how to review normal TV shows, this turned into a really long essay. I'm sorry. I inserted section headers for your convenience.]
Section One: The Breakup
Which is funny, 'cause it used to be all for Hodgins and Angela, AND THEN THIS EPISODE HAPPENED. I knew it was coming, because am spoiler whore, but I a) didn't expect it in the season premiere - even if they waited until hour 2 - and b) had prepared myself for a huge fight with mutual anger. I don't...I don't even know how to respond to this. My angry feelings, let us work through them.
To begin with, my feelings on
And then I figured that he was going to be a mitigating factor in the breakup, like maybe he'd hang around long enough to convince Angela that she wasn't sure, and then they'd get back together for a while, or at least he'd keep semi-courting her the way he was, refusing to sign divorce papers, until the tension produced too much strain for them to ignore. I also started feeling like people might eventually become sympathetic to him and start shipping him with Angela at least as an idea, so I was firmly dead set against this possibility. (Which, my bad! The Unexpected Shipping turned out to be for Cam/Sweets. Fandom, I will never fully understand you)
As an aside, I would like to note that Hodgins just completely broke my heart in this episode. Poor thing, gallantly trying to defend his territory despite the obvious odds stacked against him, like a little mongrel terrier staring down a blue-blooded, prize-winning German Shepherd (is the mental picture I got from the diner confrontation).
I love that he doesn't even flinch from the idea that Birambau is pretty much superior in every way (though I'd give Hodgins' brain the edge on intelligence and general knowledge), but it doesn't matter because he loves her more. THAT'S the kind of fantastic emotionally-in-tune side I like to see from my scientists!
I also like to see them solve their problems with violence, as evidenced by my whoop of "WOOHOO!" when he tried to deck the bigger guy. (Dear Hodgins: this woman (not-so-)secretly loves it when men fight over her. Or, you know, she would. In theory, if it ever happened. So you're not wrong.) Even if it was one of those unfortunate cases where the little guy has no real experience with physical altercation, and ends up hurting himself a lot more. XD
Still, though, when they found a way to successfully go through a whole mini-arc of relationship problems and even come to resolution over the course of the hour, I was both surprised and pleased. I pushed the doomsday spoilers out of my head, and I just accepted the kiss set to bicycle bells, amazed at how well they'd written this. Maybe the show's becoming Numb3rs! Able to give their frontrunner ship conflict through a series of small issues that just ripple the surface, rather than big breakups and gaps of time between happy periods! (although, just wait. My unbridled faith in Numb3rs' approach to Charmita is probably due to bite me in the ass this year)
Although I didn't need to see Cam get naked with her new god. I can't blame her, but I didn't need to see it. You know what else I didn't need?
Section II: Getting my therapist hate on
SWEETS STICKING HIS OVEREAGER PUPPY NOSE INTO EVERYTHING. God damn it, man-boy, GTF off my show (especially the credits! Get the hell out of my credits, you undeserving... gorbellied plume-plucked maggot-pie!). I loathe his very existence, his giant teeth, his smug I'm-so-pleased-with-myself smirk whenever people listen to him and/or follow through on his instrutions, the fact that he has no place on this show and yet somehow he's in the goddamn credits...this feeling is exacerbated by the fact that everyone I know is all "Oh, Dr. Sweets! He sparkles and dazzles me!" and in order to compensate for that overflow of undeserved love, I have to throw in extra cursing and vitriol.
That's right: I'm blaming Sweets for the breakup, not Hodgins or Angela or even Cam. In fact, I'm putting less blame on Cam than anyway - what strange world am I in? - because she did nothing wrong by sleeping with him. Her timing could have been better, but Angela should be well over him and I've never really understood why friends' exes are supposedly off-limits anyway.
She also should have known better than to mention it, but lo and behold, there was Sweets being all "Clear the air! Truth is the way of sunshine and happy faces!" who convinced her to do it, and furthermore to do it ASAP. Therein lies the problem! Despite the fact that Angela should be and probably is over her ex, having just seen him again for the first time in five years is going to understandably bring some old emotions to the surface. They're more memories of emotions than actual feelings, but still, it's going to make her feel weird to hear that her boss just jumped his bones.
Cam should have waited to tell her. I'm actually an advocate for her not saying anything at all - because damn it I am a grand believer in ignorance being bliss and painful knowledge not being of any benefit, and therefore one should always bank on the chance of never being exposed to painful knowledge - but if she had to, it shouldn't have been while Angela was still reeling in an emotional tizzy. Wait for the keel to balance out a little, when she's able to process things rationally again. God.
In conclusion, it's Sweets' fault that Angela freaked out, made Hodgins suspicious of her freaking out, and then made her call the entire relationship off because of his 'paranoia.'*
(* = HI THERE, ANGELA. My name is RS, and I would like to point out that he was nowhere near that bad; and furthermore, he has a right to some slight insecurity given that...you're objectively much prettier than he is and he probably still marvels over the fact that you're together, and my opinion after 2 seasons of watching you both is that while you're very much in love, you are also not capable of falling as in love with anyone - him included - as he has for you. Doesn't take anything away from your relationship, it's just the state of things.)
Section III: The breakup, redux
Last word on the breakup: why? The conclusion across the intarwebs is that we're pretty much unanimous about the fact that it was incredibly lame and contrived, tacked-on and pointless. And that, I think, is really why I'm so bitter about it. Not because I have 500% DEVOTION IN THE ULTIMATE SUPREMACY OF HODGELA - they were ultra cute back in the day, but the show's been weaning me off their Puppy Love sweetness for a while, and I've come to find them a slightly more average couple, even though I still think they should get married - but because it wasn't believable.
They've had a stressful few days, under extraordinary extenuating circumstances. Clear decisions cannot be made in this state. And so that whole nonsense song and dance about how "two people who don't trust each other can't be together" just filled me with incredulity. THAT'S your idea of trust issues? Hodgins is uncomfortable that your ex hasn't left town yet - like, who wouldn't be a little less than OK with that? I - what - I don't even remember the specifics of the conversation anymore, because even as I was watching it unfold, I was completely lost and going "I don't understand what's happening or why."
I do distinctly remember the heart-destroying expression of hurt masked by stony defense on Hodgins' face as he looked up at her with, "You're the one who's walking away." *wibble*
And talk about a stupid retort. "You're the one who's not stopping me"? How the hell's he supposed to stop you? If he reaches out for your hand right now, are you going to suddenly change your mind and forget what you just said? I kind of doubt it! And he may not have given a fig for his dignity earlier, but right now I hardly think he's going to prostrate himself and plead for forgiveness when he hasn't done anything wrong. ARGH. ANGELA, I FEEL LIKE I AM GOING TO HATE YOU A LOT THIS YEAR.
(Why do the women on this show suck while the men* are awesome?)
(* = For purposes of this statement, Sweets is a boy)
Section IV: This aside didn't quite fit above
Speaking of men that don't suck, hey there Clark Edison! What I love about him is that he's so DISGRUNTLED. I keep thinking I won't like him, and then...then he's all snippy and surly and like, "How the hell is this place so prestigious when it has all these SLACKERS?" He's...oh my God, he's Foreman. Except I don't remember loving Foreman anywhere near this much.
I really hope he becomes the ultimate Zack replacement. In fact, I don't even need a whole wheel of revolving assistants first; let's just call the man back right now and convince him to keep the job. Because, unlike that idiot Sweets, I could never get tired of Clark getting huffy and annoyed by his goofball coworkers. I wanted to see Hodgins take an unwilling new intern under his wing and force him to join the fun-loving lab family!
Section V: LONDON: B/B
Whew! I am running out of steam, which is sad, because this was the part of the premiere I'd been looking forward to, and the part which delivered 100% and FULLY LIVED UP TO MY HIGH EXPECTATIONS. The intarwebs seem split down the middle when it comes to Booth's "manners" in London: either they thought he was an out of character buffoon, or they thought he was hysterical. I fall into the latter camp.
I mean, the first part didn't even occur to me. It was funny! I like him spitting out the cup of tea, and ranting and raving about England, hating on traffic and tiny cars, and just...generally having issues with everything. Madly loved the whole performance. Basically, if Booth was talking, I loved it.
Still don't love Brennan, though. The entire time she was talking, I just kept thinking how much I didn't connect with her character. I know she's frequently been shown capable of caring deeply about other people, being very emotional and everything, but her basic persona still strikes me as disconnected and clinical.
And I mean, I get why Booth likes/is charmed by her - I even get why he might EVENTUALLY, DOWN THE ROAD, IN A VERY DISTANT FUTURE (*clings to hope*) be of a mind to pursue a romantic relationship with her - but that doesn't translate to me liking her individually. That's why I keep rebelling against TPTB's determination to drop shippy hints between the two of them, because I can talk a good game about shipping them and pretend to ship them and sometimes almost convince myself that I ship them, but at the end of the day, I don't. I don't even want to play the game where TPTB drops crumbs without actually feeding the beast.
Unless it's something like "Wexler's not special. You are." Little moments like that, which paint Booth in the most adorable of lights, are all right.
In conclusion, Booth rocks my socks.
Section VI: LONDON: PLOT (my paragraphs have broken down)
No love lost on Wexler, who was dull, not handsome, and demonstrated some exceptionally poor logic about how you'd want to sleep with someone who was, er, extremely experienced, just like you'd want an experienced surgeon. Funny thing, though; I bet the doctor doesn't multiply his risk of acquiring/passing on STDs every time he performs an operation.
Not much more love lost on Pritchard, who rather bored me and was also not sufficiently pretty to keep my interest.
LOTS OF LOVE for the old grandmother in the wheelchair, telling everything like it was. She was the absolute best thing about London. Can she be a recurring character? No? Well, at least she made up for my disappointment about the lack of Stephen Fry.
Just one question: the butler did it, seriously? I kept waiting for there to be a better explanation, and yet that was apparently it. Booo. Who cares about stupid Wexler dying? More with the grandmother! I bet she secretly orchestrated the whole thing! (in a way where you're totally on her side, no matter what her reason is, because she's just that great)
Yeah, OK, I'm done. I feel like I'm going to keep watching this show, because its good parts are very, very good, but the bad parts might get increasingly annoying.
P.S. Hey, remember that time Angela rejected Hodgins after their first date, and they had Stilted, Awkward, Uncomfortable Lab Time? I feel like we're going to get that again, and I'm not looking forward to it. Remember how that time lasted for like, half an episode before he and Bones got kidnapped by the Gravedigger, and in the ensuing rescue Angela decided she loved him after all? COULD WE POSSIBLY FIX IT THAT FAST AGAIN? What do you mean, probably not?
Also, my French class was awesome today, because we had it in the Hill Museum & Manuscript Library - not entirely sure why; I think we made a weak connection between women in biblical wisdom vs. their role in courtly love - and so we basically spent 2/3 of the time just looking at the gallery of pages on display from the illuminated St. John's Bible.
I hadn't ever actually gone in to see it before, just because...that takes effort, and I fear going to strange new places by myself...but it's really, really amazing to view it up close. And, OK, even I - a confirmed disliker of both religion and art in general (I find galleries dull. Sue me) - have to admit that I have massive amounts of pride for the fact that this work of wonder is pretty much "right in our backyard." It's unbelievable; mere photographs don't do it justice.