Well. Booth has been dumped. In terms of story, this seems rather abrupt, but in terms of my disdain for Hannah, not soon enough. This whole season has been dragging on and on and on until we can get back to "the heart of the matter", Booth and Brennan, and where do they go from here?
I read a lot of blogs about Bones, and all the recaps and interviews with the producers, so I feel like I have a pretty decent perspective on things, but here's something that no one has said about why the Hannah storyline didn't work out - CASTING. CASTING. CASTING. Make no mistake - Katheryn Winnick was severely miscast. How do we know? Past experience.
Take The Office, for example. After Pam left Jim's heart scattered on the sidewalk way back in season 2, Jim had to leave to get over her. It totally made sense. Booth did the same thing after Brennan rejected him, which also totally made sense. While Jim was gone, he met someone. So did Booth. Believable? I'd say so. But, here's where things differ. The Office brought in Rashida Jones, who, besides being completely underrated as an actress (she's wonderful), had clear, natural chemistry with John Krasinski (they dated in real life). As a viewer of The Office at that time, I totally understood Jim and Karen as a couple. In fact, I could see that if Pam hadn't been in the picture at all for Jim, that he could have ended up with her and we would have been just as happy as an audience. On paper, Hannah was supposed to be the same for Booth. And, on paper, she was. She's beautiful, adventurous, committed, a strong person, intelligent - in short, everything Booth needed in a new girlfriend. And it made sense, too, that Brennan could be friends with someone like that. After all, Pam and Karen were friends for awhile before Pam threw down her feelings about Jim, because they were similar - why Jim was attracted to both of them in the first place! Unfortunately, Katheryn Winnick had ZERO chemistry with David Boreanaz or Emily Deschanel, which made an already less than desireable situation for the audience even worse. Her stilted line readings were like some of my seventh graders when trying to read dramatically out of their Basil reader - more plainly put, painful. She did nothing except look pretty and had no discernable talent except turning oxygen into carbon dioxide. I firmly believe that no one would be as underwhelmed by this season if they had cast someone better. I keep picturing Sela Ward (who is too old for Booth, but someone like her, who has screen presence).
With that said, where DO Booth and Brennan go from here? I think a few important things were brought out tonight. I have rewatched the end scene a few times, and it seems obvious to me that when Brennan asks him, "What happens next?" she leaves off the "for us". She wants to know what's next for them. But, it also makes sense that Booth is "mad at all of them". He wanted Brennan, and because she rejected him, he got with Hannah, and then she rejected him too. Without Brennan's rejection, he wouldn't be there. So, it makes sense that he wouldn't want to explore the option of the two of them right away. He'll be keeping her at arms length, and I think that's expected and realistic. The only way that the rest of this season will make sense is if the way these two grow back together is completely authentic. They'll get back into their old/new groove, but since they have both been much more emotionally transparent, it will be easier for them to be open with one another when things start getting serious again.
Le sigh. I don't care if this season has been lackluster. I love these two, and I'm sticking it out until the end.