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WendyCR72

S11.E22: The Nightmare Within The Nightmare

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Season Finale:

The team dives back into investigating a serial killer from the past, attempting to find “The Puppeteer,” who lives with his victims’ bodies before disposing of them. Meanwhile, Brennan works through her guilt over her retirement last year, blaming herself for not stopping the serial killer earlier. However, little does she know she might be in some trouble of her own.

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East Coast airing is over and spoilers are fair game, so if you're on the west coast, stop reading now!

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Welp. That happened.

Color me not all that surprised, but yeah. I think "be careful what you wish for" applied to a subset of the audience tonight! Eric Millegan certainly upped the creep factor!

Now can Booth off Zack free and clear, please? (Once burned hands were mentioned and someone who worked at the lab, I'm shocked no one but Booth clued in right away. (Cam eventually got it.))

Always knew Zack was odd, but yeah. Time away was not good for him.

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Fruit of the poisonous tree.

I didn't buy the season three reveal, so I don't buy this either, regardless of how nicely they dropped  hints all half-season long (the killer sees Brennan as a mother, Brennan sees her interns as her children) and actually used a killer who had the knowledge needed to do the crime.

I thought the whole crew looked like morons for not panicking and calling security the minute Brennan said she didn't send the email-- if not when they received the email in the first place since it's wildly out of the norm for Brennan to interrupt her current investigation/obsession for a dinner party. Then they looked like morons again for not making Zack as a possibility well before they did. (Aubrey, who didn't live through season three, is excused.)

This show has a weird self-loathing thing going on.

Edited by Panopticon
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So are we supposed to believe that Zack just freely came and went from the psychiatric facility to hang out in the puppet guy's basement, set up the classroom scene, live with his victims for months, etc? Right.

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How does that even...

It's bad enough that Pelant was uber, uber mastermindy beyond all masterminds but this surpasses even that challenge to one's suspension of disbelief.

Worst psychiatric hospital ever (they were probably all in on it).

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15 minutes into the episode my reception started breaking up (it's storming here now) so I was willing to give the show the benefit of the doubt that maybe I missed something that would fill in the plot holes--but I guess not, huh?

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11 minutes ago, Kathira said:

So are we supposed to believe that Zack just freely came and went from the psychiatric facility to hang out in the puppet guy's basement, set up the classroom scene, live with his victims for months, etc? Right.

As much as I hate the all-omipotent bent this show loves, I can sorta see this: Zack has a high IQ, was smart enough to avoid jail using Sweets, and was an apprentice to one killer as it is. I could see him finally tipped over the edge sanity-wise and, having been at that place for so long, maybe gaining the trust of staff and learning the layout of the building and knowing schedules by heart, etc.

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As usual, my like and dislike of a show hangs on the BB relationship.  Is there a reason she was so angry at him all episode?  Are ED and DB fighting?  I would have much preferred that Max hug to have been with Booth. I don't expect a makeout scene, or even a freaking kiss these days, but would it hurt them to speak kindly to each other?

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3 minutes ago, Mama No Life said:

As usual, my like and dislike of a show hangs on the BB relationship.  Is there a reason she was so angry at him all episode?  Are ED and DB fighting?  I would have much preferred that Max hug to have been with Booth. I don't expect a makeout scene, or even a freaking kiss these days, but would it hurt them to speak kindly to each other?

Actually, I think the anger was part of the show and is for a purpose this time. What, I don't know, but I got the vibe that something was up and it ties into creepy doc somehow.

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I could kind of accept Zack the genius figuring out how to come and go as he pleased, and I could accept his sanity degenerating through the years of confinement after losing his career and the complete use of his hands.

But I couldn't accept him aiding a killer in the first place because of a logical fallacy that individuals are expendable. Not after the monologues he had about the meaning of the holiday season in season one. Not after his family flew en masse from Michigan just to see him through a glass wall on Christmas day. Not the one character who had an adoring, functional family of origin that gave him a place to fit despite his oddities. It was such a nice touch for the show to make the weirdest character the one with the most secure upbringing. And while Zack himself could be a lot to take, his presence often allowed Brennan to be  more human.

Those early seasons were so lovely, and it's as if the show is making a concerted effort to turn them into something bitter and ugly retroactively.

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The Bones Comic Con panel is tomorrow, so it'll be interesting if anything can be gleaned from this. I know the whole cast and the EPs will be there. The Comic Con key art/poster has also been revealed.

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3 minutes ago, Panopticon said:

Those early seasons were so lovely, and it's as if the show is making a concerted effort to turn them into something bitter and ugly retroactively.

I don't believe that myself, and I think the whole idea of accepting what Zack can and cannot or would or would not do is proportional in terms of those who liked him and those who didn't. Which, in turn, colors things for each person.

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I loved Zack but I am going with this. I may be dumb but I didn't figure it out until the whiteboard scene and then it all made sense. Zack was able to escape the psychiatric hospital before, he used Sweets to get out of prison, he has worked directly with a serial killer and he always seemed to see Brennan as a mother figure.

I was one of the few people who had no issue with Zack being the apprentice. Being in combat can really mess with your head, even if it was a short time, and Zack was not able to handle it. Zack's going overseas even caused a rift between Booth and Brennan - she was mad at him for not stopping Zack because she knew he couldn't handle it and she expected Booth to stop him.

I have hung with this show for it's entire run and I have no problem with a former member of the team being the big bad for the final season.

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7 hours ago, WendyCR72 said:

I don't believe that myself, and I think the whole idea of accepting what Zack can and cannot or would or would not do is proportional in terms of those who liked him and those who didn't. Which, in turn, colors things for each person.

Not true in my case. I didn't actually like him as an individual  but thought his absence caused a crack in the show's structure because all the social oddities got dumped on the title character.

What I did agree with is your original comment, that there was a be careful what you wish for aspect. I didn't especially wish for a Zack return but I know the show likes to rub it in with meta dialogue when fans are critical. So this is just a step beyond that. 

No harm no foul. Obviously not the show for me and I wish I'd realized that before now

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Maybe I'm missing something, but I didn't understand why they figured that the killer had to have been born after 1978 because that's when the book of nursery songs was written.  Why couldn't an older person, say someone in their late 50s, have a copy of the book?  

As soon as they started realizing that the killer had to be someone who was familiar with the lab, I started running a list of squinterns through my head.  I kind of thought it might be Oliver Wells, since he always seemed to be trying to prove that he was smarter than all of them.  I even briefly thought that maybe Daisy had gone off the deep end (mainly when they said that the killer wasn't someone with great strength).  I realized it was Zach when they mentioned the high IQ and then brought in the probably of burn injuries.  I'm okay with the killer being Zach, but I'm hoping that there's something else that we haven't found out yet.

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Zack has a big scar on his head. We have a psychiatrist who is a also a neurologist, and has a passion for how the physical brain controls and interacts the mind. Has he been experimenting on Zack? Controlling him?

That also gives another layer to the puppet master theme.

My hunch is that the nightmares Bones is experiencing, and the same ones that the doctor's patient were experiencing, are not random or wholly psychological. Something is inducing them, which means someone has to have access to Bones. 

At first it felt like Wendell could be behind it - he brought her coffee right before she slipped into a dream. (Although even bringing the coffee could have been part of the dream.) I'm not sure if we've seen him bring her coffee in previous episodes. If he were a part of it, it's possible the doctor got to him while he was getting his cancer treatment, although there's no apparent scar.

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10 hours ago, WendyCR72 said:

Actually, I think the anger was part of the show and is for a purpose this time. What, I don't know, but I got the vibe that something was up and it ties into creepy doc somehow.

Yeah, it almost seemed like Booth was jealous of their connection.  And I suppose that Brennan is angry with Booth and herself for quitting.  I was just excited for this episode....first one in a while....because I thought I might get some love. lol

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4 hours ago, BooksRule said:

Maybe I'm missing something, but I didn't understand why they figured that the killer had to have been born after 1978 because that's when the book of nursery songs was written.  Why couldn't an older person, say someone in their late 50s, have a copy of the book?  

Although they didn't explicitly say this - my take is that the songs were relevant to the killer because his mother taught/played them for him. Since the death scenes have something to do with his mother, they figured he'd have to have been a child when the book was published. Of course, even with that rationale, the killer could have been born before 1978, just not much before it.

So when did Eric Milligan start looking like Peter McNichol - or did he always and I just missed it because of that mop of hair he used to have?

Edited by Clanstarling
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If you look at recent photos of Eric Milligan, you can see how different he looks now but who doesn't after so many years?  

I have to say I absolutely hate this storyline - I know it's silly but I just so much loved his character before he felt he needed to leave the show and so they cooked up that horrible story of him being a killer - and, now, this?  Ick.

As someone who works with people with disabilities, I am disappointed to see them taking the direction of Hodgins into being able to walk again. Not because I begrudge anyone that wonderful chance but because, overall, it is so unrealistic and it really takes so much work and emotional and physical effort for people to come to terms when they have suffered such an injury and have to adjust to the new limitations and realities in their lives - I would have much preferred they went down that road (just once in fiction they could do it!) - 

I should have known this show wouldn't do that though - but it is disappointing.

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I'm just going to go with what someone said about a scar, because the show was so darkly lit near the end, I could barely make out anything! I actually screamed "For the love of God, someone turn on a light!" so I could see something. Except for Brennan calling him Zach, it could have been anyone for all I could see of him!!! 

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3 hours ago, Lee4U said:

If you look at recent photos of Eric Milligan, you can see how different he looks now but who doesn't after so many years?  

I have to say I absolutely hate this storyline - I know it's silly but I just so much loved his character before he felt he needed to leave the show and so they cooked up that horrible story of him being a killer - and, now, this?  Ick.

As someone who works with people with disabilities, I am disappointed to see them taking the direction of Hodgins into being able to walk again. Not because I begrudge anyone that wonderful chance but because, overall, it is so unrealistic and it really takes so much work and emotional and physical effort for people to come to terms when they have suffered such an injury and have to adjust to the new limitations and realities in their lives - I would have much preferred they went down that road (just once in fiction they could do it!) - 

I should have known this show wouldn't do that though - but it is disappointing.

Word.

I'm hoping that he ends up being a red herring and the real killer is not him. If it is, I wouldn't be very thrilled about it.

They did in part. Which is better than not doing it at all.

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Me too, @Commando Cody. Did it bother anyone else to have Bones school Booth on the patterns of serial killers? The specifics have faded in my mind, but it annoyed me while I was watching - I mean, the dude's FBI, for goodness sake. That's kind of their thing. I know it was meant to be exposition, but still...write better.

I wasn't particular fan of Zack in the beginning (I didn't dislike him, he just wasn't a favorite), but his turn to the dark side back then didn't make any sense and it still doesn't.

Edited by Clanstarling
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At first it felt like Wendell could be behind it - he brought her coffee right before she slipped into a dream. (Although even bringing the coffee could have been part of the dream.) I'm not sure if we've seen him bring her coffee in previous episodes. If he were a part of it, it's possible the doctor got to him while he was getting his cancer treatment...

I thought Wendell bringing the coffee was also a dream because right after she drank it she was in the midst of another dream.

I will watch this show until the end of time but I don't buy Zach as a killer.  I wanted him back, but certainly not like this.

I am concerned for Ryan O'Neal's health.  He looked SO thin.

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Funny how perceptions vary - I thought Ryan was looking much better than he had been. And I'm by no means one who thinks thinner is automatically better. His face looked fresher, not as tired as he used to look.

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IIRC Zack helped Brennan find the original serial killer, the one that turned him. If so, maybe he is back to help her again, to find the real puppetmaster? I could buy this more easily than him hanging on to an obsession with her during the whole time in hospital and carrying a grudge that makes him want to torture her. 

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I stopped watching Bones for 3 years after the first time the show runner did his ridiculous number on the Zack character.  Now I am happily out for good.  Glad the actor has some work but noooooooooooo.

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On 7/21/2016 at 8:49 PM, Mama No Life said:

As usual, my like and dislike of a show hangs on the BB relationship.  Is there a reason she was so angry at him all episode?  Are ED and DB fighting?  I would have much preferred that Max hug to have been with Booth. I don't expect a makeout scene, or even a freaking kiss these days, but would it hurt them to speak kindly to each other?

Being very sleep deprived, dealing with the stress of trying to find a psycho killer who is clearly targeting her, and all the while while Booth kept pushing her about her nightmares and general state of mind long after she made it readily apparent that she just DOES NOT want to talk about it are all very good reasons to be pissed at Booth all episode. Booth and Brennan DO speak kindly to each other all the time, they often veil it in their snarky back and forth but they do show great affection for each other. For Booth and Brennan the snarking back and forth is their version of flirting and showing affection most of the time.

I would have preferred if Booth or Wendel or just anyone other than Dr. Brennan was the one who ended up getting kidnapped because it would have been less blatantly predictable. That and that whoever it was getting kidnapped was snuck up on or something because it's really really hard to believe that Zack, a guy with barely functional hands could blatantly walk straight up to Brennan of all people and knock her unconscious, not to mention just another example of the writers making a woman trained in the martial arts ridiculously weak so that the plot could continue.

I expect that Zack is just yet another dupe but at this point I'd rather Zack just be the supposed serial killer because I'm tired of the "puppetmaster of the puppetmaster of the puppetmaster" thing they've got going on with this killer and I'd rather Zack just not be another rung on that ladder, it's the same sort of unbelievable nonsensical crap the writers pulled to keep Pelant around or Epps for that matter.

Edited by immortalfrieza
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On 7/24/2016 at 0:13 AM, Kelda Feegle said:

IIRC Zack helped Brennan find the original serial killer, the one that turned him. If so, maybe he is back to help her again, to find the real puppetmaster? I could buy this more easily than him hanging on to an obsession with her during the whole time in hospital and carrying a grudge that makes him want to torture her. 

I hope you're right about that. If it's the latter, then it's really tragic.

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