Thursday, January 12, 2012

Bones “The Truth in the Myth”

At this writing I am several episodes behind the rest of the world, but “Bones” has been going the route of so many crime dramas. It started out as a creative take on solving interesting mysteries with a cast of well developed characters who develop over the course of episodes. Slowly the character development and interactions become so involved that the mysteries and stories begin to take a back seat. The compelling cases have been few and far between throughout the fifth and sixth seasons, and even the interpersonal relationships have stagnated as we head toward the inevitable union that we all know has been coming since the pilot.

That being said, there is another way that “Bones” is blazing its own trail. The relationship between the ultra-empiricist scientist and her blind-faith embracing partner has been explored with an even-handed fairness that is refreshing. Usually Hollywood treats faith like a medieval superstition. This show does a good job of demonstrating that faith does not have to be irrational and that empiricism can be as prejudiced and traditional and dogmatic as the church. It exposes the religious nature of Scientism.

A good recent example was the episode featuring the “Chupacabra.” In it, Booth tells Brennan that he had once thought he had seen a Yeti. Since she trusts his character, she does not belittle his experience the way she would normally do anyone else who had shared such a belief. Instead, she finds a rational explanation for what he had seen. However, the entire story might have been fabricated by Booth to prove a point:

Booth: Bones, at any time did you think that the chupacabra was real?
Brennan: No.
Booth: Then why did you believe that I saw the Yeti in Nepal?
Brennan: Because what I said you saw was totally rational.
Booth: I never saw it. You see, what you did was rationally explain something that never happened.
Brennan: You never saw the Yeti?
Booth: Or did I?
Brennan: No, you didn't! You did? Are you trying to confuse me?
Booth: I might be!
Brennan: Okay, what is your point?
Booth: That things are confusing. Just because you can explain something doesn't mean that it's explainable.

Booth makes an even better point earlier in the episode, and highlights a problem with Scientism that is rampant in our society today. Regarding her refusal to entertain reality that is, as yet, unproven or un-provable:

“You talk a really good game, Bones, but when it comes down to it, you’re no different from people who were certain that that Sun revolved around the Earth.”

1 comment:

  1. that is, as yet,

    Good article. I have never watched this series because I can't stand it. I, of course, am not opinionated.


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