We begin with a woman who’s clearly going for Mother of the Year, as she tries to get her six-year-old daughter to climb down a ladder into a well and pretend she’s been kidnapped. The six-year-old, already smarter than her mommy, refuses, so mommy goes down the ladder to show her how “fun” it is. Mommy sees a skeleton and screams, and the daughter, awesomely, throws down the ladder and runs away. This kid is going to grow up and discover the cure for everything, while also creating world peace.
Booth residence. Booth is totally stressed out about how much studying he has to do before he testifies in front of the subcommittee. To that end, Sweets wants to take some of the workload off Booth by heading murder investigations. Brennan balks at that, since Booth is her partner. He promises he’ll still be around, and she can call him any time. Brennan gets a call about the bones in the well, and tells Booth to let Sweets know to meet her there. She tells him if Sweets is incompetent, she’ll let him know. Booth speaks for all of us, when he says, “Yeah, I’m sure you will.”
At the well. Brennan and Hodgins are down there collecting evidence, while Cam supervises from above, as if they’ve never done this before, which Hodgins snidely comments about. Victim died five days previously and is a male in his mid forties. As they send up all of the insect/tissue evidence they’ve collected, Sweets arrives and really gets into his new role as he starts barking orders at everyone. First order of business is expanding the perimeter. Then he threatens that anyone not wearing paper booties is going to be written up. Already I’m annoyed with him, and I usually like Sweets. Sigh. He tells Cam he has to do everything by the book, because he can’t let Booth down.
Brennan hears Sweets has arrived and tells him to make sure that Cam has the support that she needs, as she is in charge of the scene. Also, that sometimes the FBI techs can be sloppy handling evidence. Cam immediately points Sweets toward someone who isn’t wearing proper gloves. Good job getting rid of the annoying fly, Cam!
As for the skeleton, the head has a bunch of coins embedded in there, due to an “electro-chemical reaction,” and Brennan fears they’ll have a hard time removing the coins without damaging it.
Sweets, having only been gone a couple of minutes, apparently had enough time to question “the locals” and find out that the area is host to family picnics by day and underage drinking by night. Then he hands Cam some booties. She tells him how considerate he is as she puts then down. Sweets wisely doesn’t push her about it.
Cam tests Sweets and asks how he knows it’s a murder (did he say it was a murder?), and he talks about the drag marks and how the grate inside the well looks like it was stomped on. It was a body dump. Cam says she’s impressed, and Hodgins wants to know if he just “Brennan-ed” her. Brennan wants to know what that means but assumes it’s a compliment, since Sweets seemed to be very thorough. Sweets, from above, yells, “Thank you!”
Lab. Wow, ANOTHER intern? Her name is Jessica Warren, and she’s participating in Brennan’s first cardinal rule of “Never do that.” She’s speculating and gets a slap on the wrist for it from Brennan. Unlike other interns, she doesn’t immediately cower but protests that her instincts are highly developed. Sweets comes in to say he appreciates how Ms. Warren is there to learn, but maybe they shouldn’t be using a novice. Cam says she appreciates him following the body to the Jeffersonian and protests he really didn’t have to do that in a tone that suggests she really wishes he hadn’t. Sweets is still worried Booth will know he’s not following protocol, even though Booth hasn’t followed a body back to the Jeffersonian since forever.
Then the intern pipes up, calls Sweets “dude,” and chastises him for making it all about him. “What about this guy, huh?” I see the intern is making tons of friends already. To make matters worse, she tries to “shrink” Sweets by saying that someone as uptight as he is usually has something bubbling inside. Then, to fully solidify herself on Brennan’s crap list, speculates about what a wild man Sweets really is, and Brennan tells her that if she says one more thing not related to the remains, she’s going to be dismissed.
Cam, eager to be rid of Sweets, gives him the paperwork and notes that the chain of is custody is complete. When Sweets starts to protest, she reminds him of protocol. He leaves, but not before he gets a flirty smile from the intern. Brennan comments that she likes Sweets in his new role, due to his attention to detail.
Jessica thinks the guy was an athlete, due to a “vibe” she gets. Brennan points out that vibes aren’t evidence, so Jessica points out a bunch of factual sciencey stuff that led her to that conclusion. Bottom line, there was a strain to his shoulders from overdeveloped muscles. He was probably a swimmer. Brennan concedes that, based on the evidence, this may be correct. Jessica, who I’ll just call “Daisy 2.0” brags that “It all started with a vibe.”
FBI. Sweets is so proud of all the paperwork he did, which Booth tosses aside, as I figured he would. Apparently there’s a whole section devoted to how much he hates the intern, but Booth has already been filled in by Cam, and he doesn’t care about that, either. He just wants Sweets to look at the crime scene photos and do his “shrink thing” he always does. Since Sweets was physically at the crime scene, he doesn’t need the photos. He thinks the murderer was methodical, deliberate, and thoughtful. Booth speculates it’s not a crime of passion. Sweets said it could have been initially, but afterward, he accepted what he’d done and had no regrets.
A beep comes from Booth’s computer. It’s Angela, who’s identified the body as Brian Thomas, age forty-three. He’s the head swim coach at Knox Community College in Maryland. He was reported missing by his wife. She’s already emailed Booth with the info. Booth wants Sweets to interview the wife and find out if she’s a grieving widow or murder suspect.
Interrogation room. The wife looks distraught. She says Brian had no enemies. He just taught and swam. No competitive problems, since he hadn’t competed for years. When Sweets asks what time her husband left the house the day he went missing, it’s revealed she didn’t know, since she’s a nurse, and she works nights. Her husband would stay late at the pool. Lately, they haven’t been spending much time together. They talked about taking the summer off to travel.
Jessica and Hodgins. She calls him “Curly” and he says judging by the nicknames and her competitive nature, he surmises she grew up with boys. She says it’s a good call, since she had five brothers, and proceeds to kind of “play punch” him as he’s pouring hydrochloric acid. Good call, new intern! She’s worried it will hurt the bones, but Hodgins tells her not to worry, and he applies it to the skull to dislodge the coins. Jessica comments on how smart everyone at the Jeffersonian is and wants to know why there isn’t more appreciation for scientific imagination. He tells her to try the H.G. Wells exhibit on the fourth floor. Jessica wants to begin de-fleshing the bones and asks where she can get eighty pounds of pineapples.
Booth comes to see Sweets and tells him Cam called to let him know the tox screen is clean. Sweets wants to know why she didn’t call him, but Booth just tosses it up to force of habit. Sweets did a little research on the community college where Brian worked. He shows Booth an article in which an “anonymous source” told a reporter about hazing on the swim team. They were made to drink dangerous amounts of milk and vinegar until they vomited. Ewww…gross! Two students were hospitalized, and one of them quit the team. When Booth asks why one of the students would turn against Brian, Sweets says he tracked down the student reporter and found out Brian was the “anonymous source.” Booth wants to go with Sweets to talk to the swimmers, but Sweets reminds him he’s going to be on CSPAN, and he has a lot of studying to do. When Booth suggests he take Bones, Sweets is insulted and thinks this means he needs a babysitter. Booth tells him to it’s so she can do her “Boney” thing. Hmmm…
Bones and Sweets at the community college by the indoor pool. Bones is happy Sweets is making deductions based on evidence as opposed to, as Sweets says, “his usual meaningless psychobabble.” Bones agrees. I wish she’d make up her mind. One week she respects him, and the next she thinks he’s a quack. Sweets brings up Jessica and how Brennan had promised to fire her, but Brennan points out Jessica is Mensa and graduated Michigan State at the age of nineteen. They need her expertise, and she’s surprised Sweets isn’t more accepting.
Brennan has a picture of Avery Parrish, the guy who supposedly orchestrated the hazing, and spots him right away. Brennan, in her usual tactful style, him and a couple of the others, that Brian’s flesh was mainly eaten away by rats. One of the swim team, Quentin, who’d just gotten out of the water, asks if she said “bats” and Brennan says he has hearing loss due to excessive exposure to water. Then she insta-diagnoses Avery with swimmer’s shoulder. They question Avery about Brian turning him in for hazing, but he says he loved the guy, no matter what he did, since if it wasn’t for Brian, neither he nor Quentin would have gotten scholarships at four-year colleges. Quentin says when he got out of the army, he thought he’d only go to community college. They said the last time they saw Brian was the previous Wednesday. It turns out the students all think he was having an affair with an attractive female red-headed coach named Gabby, who appears to be flirting with a member of the swim team. She’d been the only other one there with the coach that night.
Interrogation room with Coach Gabby, who insists they were friends and coworkers. Full-disclosure Brennan points out she’s had sex with both of those in the past. When Sweets says he thinks the affair meant more to her than to him, she points out again they weren’t having an affair, but he was having an affair with someone else. Brian had given her a ride home one night, and she found an earring in his car that was gaudy with rhinestones, nothing like what his wife would wear. And he smelled like perfume, which his wife also didn’t wear, since it would irritate her patients. Sweets says while she thinks this clears her, it actually doesn’t, since the motive could be jealousy. Brennan agrees and says his reasoning is sound.
Lab. Lots of pineapple (why didn’t she just get pineapple juice?). Anyway, Jessica learned about the benefits of pineapple when she took a Thai cooking class and saw how it removed the meat from the bone. It removed the staining as well, and she says she’s also glad it didn’t deteriorate the bone. Cam comes walking up at this point and is quite dismayed Jessica risked the remains on a technique she wasn’t sure about. Jessica, who obviously misses all social cues, thanks Cam for trusting her. Cam says she doesn’t now, but Jessica is unfazed and talks about how “stoked” Brennan will be to see all of the injuries. Hodgins backs her up. Conclusion: Brian was beaten while he was in the fetal position. Hodgins says he’ll swab the wounds in hopes of identifying a weapon.
FBI. Sweets found out Brian ate at the same place every Friday night and paid with the same credit card. Since this was a night his wife worked, Booth surmises he was having an affair, and even though he yelled at Sweets for interrupting him during his studying, he insists he needs a study break and goes to track down that lead.
Lab. Jessica is telling Brennan about her fabulous pineapple method. Brennan says she’s lucky it worked out, and Jessica goes through a whole speech about how she wouldn’t call the discovery of penicillin “luck.” When Brennan tells Jessica to get her approval before she tries anything like this again, she laments about the red tape. I didn’t think anyone could be as annoying as Daisy, but I agree with Sweets. I want to put tape over her mouth. Back to the evidence, it seems Brian was thrown feet-first down the well. Brennan calls Jessica on her not catching that Brian had a bunion and some other injuries, which are like what women get when they wear high heels. Goodness, if I’ve figured out the secret by now, why haven’t the geniuses? Anyway, Brennan speculates Jessica’s “vibe” must be broken. Brian also shows continuous strain to his upper back that had nothing to do with swimming and was involved in “another strenuous physical activity.” I’m just going to leave that there without comment.
To further my hypothesis, Bones and Booth visit the restaurant where Brian went every Friday night, and nobody who worked there recognized him. Booth suggests going to a nearby hotel, but when Brennan spots an overly made-up, very tall woman going through a door right next to the restaurant, Brennan drags booth toward the place saying “It makes sense.” At last! The place is called “Madame’s Apple.” Booth says it’s a club. Boy, won’t he be surprised when he gets inside!
When they do get inside, they see a female impersonator lip syncing to Lady Gaga. They also find Brian’s picture on the wall, albeit he’s in drag. Wait, he allowed them to put up a picture of him? Way to try and stay undercover, Brian. Brennan puts all the clues together and says it all makes sense. Then the lip syncer starts flirting with Booth before another drag queen comes up and takes them to a table for two. They talk with “Destiny Childs” (Ever the gentleman, Booth tries to call her “Miss Childs,” but she says, “Just call me Destiny, sugar.”) It turns out Brian had been working there for a year. When Destiny offers to make up Booth, he says he’s straight, but she says so was “Jenny” (Brian). When asked if Brian had any enemies, Destiny points to the lip syncer, Kimmy Moore, who was upset Brian had taken her prime spot. Kimmy had thought she was good enough to parlay her act into a tour or TV show, but “Jenny” was better. When asked if Kimmy would kill over it, Destiny says Kimmy has the worst characteristics of both genders. The aggression of a man, and the temper of a woman. Brennan notices Kimmy’s muscular structure and says she was strong enough to throw a man down a well.
Lab. Sweets comes to apologize to Jessica for the “novice” remark he made earlier. She accepts and says to pick her up at eight. She likes her steak rare and her beer thick and cold. Because she’s just that cool. I’m really hoping I warm up to this chick, because it looks like she’s Sweets’s new love interest, and apparently he likes them super-annoying. Sweets thought she was kidding, but she was serious. He points out that they’re colleagues (which didn’t stop him with Daisy), and when Jessica is turned off by this, he mumbles about how attractive she is, etc., and that’s just when Cam walks in and tells him the lab isn’t for speed dating. Sure, Cam, we’ll all remember that when you’re smooching with Arastoo or having another public fight with him in front of your colleagues. Anyway, back to the evidence, it appears that Brian had punched someone. The other person’s tooth penetrated a bone in Brian’s hand. The injury happened two weeks before he died, which happened at the same time as the fracture to his foot. Cam mentions the high heels thing, and Sweets gets on the same page as Booth and Brennan, when he realizes Brian was in drag. They agree a fight must have happened at the bar, and Sweets says Booth and Brennan are there (I believe he means the restaurant and not the club next door), so he’ll call them.
Booth and Brennan are talking with Kimmy, who swears Brian took her spot after she came down with the flu and insists Destiny ratted her out, because she’s jealous. Apparently Sweets has already called Booth, because they ask Kimmy to take off her makeup, so they can see if she has any bruising as a result of a fight. Kimmy says this is a no-go, since it takes hours to become Kimmy, and she has a show in fifteen minutes. Booth says it’s either makeup removal or a ride downtown. I don’t know what she’s making such a big deal about, since she only took off the bottom corner of her makeup on the left side. Kimmy says the fight happened three weeks ago, and it wasn’t with her. She said “Jenny” came back in one night after her break with a bloody hand but said the situation has been handled.
Lab. Hodgins and Jessica. Hodgins found traces of copper, zinc, and plastic, and the most common use for those ingredients is plumbing pipe. Jessica says the “lovely dude-lady” was beaten with a plumbing pipe and seems really bummed about it, as if getting hit with a baseball bat would have been a better way to go. Angela comes in and asks if they’d seen Cam but wants to know if that was a “blushing Sweets” she’d seen running out of there earlier. Jessica says he came to apologize for being stupid, and she made him feel more stupid. That’s nice. They talk about how Sweets has a thing for interns, and Jessica says how she’ll make him forget about Daisy, but she won’t, because they’re both so much alike, he’ll probably go running back to Daisy. She makes a comment about how she thinks the “proper ones are always crazy in bed.” Cam comes in just in time to hear this last part and chastise her. Do these people not realize that reprimands just go right over this “genius’s” head? Anyway, Cam says the next person she hears talking about their sex life instead of the case, cleans her autopsy room. I guess it’ll be a race between Jessica and Angela.
FBI. Mrs. Brian. She heard about “Jenny” and needs to talk to Sweets about it. He explains to her about how as an athlete and coach, Brian had to adhere to a very structured lifestyle. “Jenny” provided him with an escape. But Mrs. Brian doesn’t care about that. She wants to know why he didn’t tell her. Sweets says that people often reject what’s odd or foreign to them. Brian must have been afraid of losing her. She says she loved him and would have accepted him if he’d given her the chance. She thinks if he’d trusted her, he might still be alive.
Angela found footage from a convenience store camera that shows the fight Brian got into. It was with a plumber (“Joe’s Plumbing” is clearly on the FRONT windshield, which…okay…). Angela tracked down the license plate to a Joe Rizzo.
Interrogation room. Sweets and Joe. Sweets accuses Joe of committing a hate crime and was humiliated, so he killed Brian. Joe seems surprised that “she’s” dead. Sweets says since he’s a plumber, he’s they’re prime suspect and brings up the thing about the weapon being made of plumber’s pipe. But Joe says he likes “Jenny” and used to go see her every Friday night. Apparently Joe noticed some weird charges on his credit card that he never uses but for some reason had all the info about it in his phone. He accused Jenny of stealing the number and using it. He called Jenny a “tranny” and shoved her, so that was why Jenny didn’t react too well. But he was out three-hundred dollars and never did find out who stole the info.
Lab. Hodgins and Jessica. The piping in Joe’s truck matched what was in the wound, so now it’s on to phase two, which includes synthetic skeleton torsos surrounded by cherry-flavored gelatin and minced meat. They will smash the skeletons with the piping found in Joe’s truck to recreate the force profile. While Hodgins and Jessica are hacking away in their little plastic cage and wearing their nice space suits, Cam comes walking up to tell them they could have used Angela’s million-dollar computer to do a recreation, but they say Angela was busy with a stolen internet connection and how within the first forty-eight hours of an investigation, every minute counts. So, I guess that explains why they took a good chunk of the day to recreate those skeleton torsos? How long ago did they approach Angela? Surely whatever she was “busy” with could have taken less time than making those models. Cam threatens that something prohibitive had better come of this.
Angela and Sweets. The thing she was busy with was tracking down who stole Joe’s info. While she does that, she pressures Sweets into going for Jessica. Why, I don’t know. Sweets thinks she’s too unpredictable, but Angela thinks he needs some fun. Then he shouldn’t go for Jessica. Angela realizes that Madame’s Apple had free wifi, so every time Joe logged in, they accessed his account information.
Interrogation room. Destiny Childs, now in her male form, is being questioned by Sweets. He says he would only charge small amounts, and he didn’t think Joe would care, since he was a big tipper. Sweets thinks Destiny killed Brian, because he could have gone to jail for identity theft. But Destiny says that Jenny was a friend who reminded him that Madame’s Apple was more than just a bar but a place where people could be themselves, so he just stopped, because it was either that or lose what he loved most. When Sweets expresses skepticism over Destiny’s willingness to change that quickly, he explains he grew up being laughed at and beat on. When that happens, you learn to survive any way you can, and sometimes you make the wrong choices. He says it may not have been easy to make the change, but he did.
Lab. Jessica comes to tell Brennan the copper pipes are not a match for the force profile, but Brennan already knows, since her methods are better. Then why didn’t she stop the experiment, if she’d already figured it out? Anyway, she wants Jessica to appreciate the gifts she’s been given, and Jessica says she hears that a lot. Back to the case, Brennan says they’re looking for a weapon that has a much higher velocity with the same ingredients as in the pipe. That has the same velocity as a bullet but is not a bullet. Brennan says it was a bullet. When Jessica is confused, Brennan asks her to think of what Brian did when he wasn’t in drag. Answer: Swimming. Conclusion: It was a bullet. He was shot.
Angela’s computer. Brennan, Sweets, Jessica, Cam, and Angela. So, the story is that Brian was swimming, and when a bullet is fired into water, it slows and deforms enough to create injuries that would mimic blunt-force trauma. A bullet exits a gun at nine-hundred feet per second, but it would slow and stop at a depth of eight feet. By Angela’s calculations, the victim was hit from a distance of 5.5 feet away. Based on the size of the injuries, he was probably shot with a .45 hollow-point bullet. Angela does the simulation. As for the plastic, one of the bullets hit a lane divider. He became paralyzed while in the water and drowned.
At the community college by the pool. It seems they’re about to do a simulation. They did discover a nick in one of the lane lines. Any bullets should have slowed and sunk but none were found. The killer must have dove in after them. Plus, the filter and the chlorine did away with any traces of blood. Brennan thinks that since the killer had to move the body, there would be trace somewhere. Hodgins comes up from the pool to give a sample of a chip from the sidewall that was caused by the bullet. Sweets tells him to keep looking for the bullet. Meanwhile, Brennan has found blood traces in the hamper, which must have been used to move the body. Sweets points out that Coach Gabby is the only other one who had a key to the pool.
Sweets and Brennan go up to Gabby and ask if she owns a gun. At first she’s all defensive but finally admits to owning a .45 she swears she only uses for target practice.
The lab. Hodgins tells Jessica he found a bullet fragment lodged in the drain. Jessica says that means they’re going to have to rethink things.
Sweets tells Brennan no gun powder residue was found in Gabby’s gun. Jessica comes running in to tell them they’ve been wrong. After Brennan yells at her for not knocking, she says the drain was ten feet under, and thus, Brian was not shot from outside the pool, since it would have stopped at eight feet. Brennan calls her brilliant, and in her first touch of humility, Jessica says she can’t tell her how long she’s been waiting to hear that.
Brennan and Jessica go running through the lab with Sweets tailing them, as they pick up people along the way, including Hodgins and Cam. Once they’re all at the bones, It’s explained once again that the killer was inside the pool. Water transmits pressure more efficiently than air, which means a gun fired under water would be deafening. They locate a hairline fracture on Brian’s stapes (a bone in the middle ear), so they conclude the killer’s hearing would also be affected.
Interrogation room. Quentin, the swimmer with the hearing problem, is in the hot seat. They’ve got his gun he left the military with that Quentin says he carries for self-defense. It tested positive for chlorine. They inform him about the bullet fragment, and it was matched to his weapon. When asked he did it, since he was getting an education, Quentin says it was only at a community college. He served his country, and he felt he deserved to go to a four-year college. There was only one problem. Turns out, Quentin was practicing swimming so much, his grades slipped, so he copied another guy’s midterm. Brian was going to report him. They got into a fight. Quentin shoved him into the pool, then he says he just lost it. He doesn’t even remember how it all happened. He liked the coach but reiterates that he just lost it. He looks broken up about it.
FBI. Booth and Brennan. Booth is done studying. He says if they subcommittee doesn’t like his answers, it’s not meant to be. Brennan thinks he’s ready. She says that Sweets was good, but it taught her she should never take Booth for granted. She asks if Booth was testing her, since if he gets the job, they wouldn’t be working together any more. But Booth says he told Stark that if Brennan isn’t with him, he wasn’t interested in the job. Brennan asks where Sweets is, since they were going to buy him a drink. Booth says Sweets told him he was busy, but Booth thinks he’s tired from doing “manly” work. Cut to Sweets’s apartment, where…oh gosh…we don’t’ see anything but can hear Jessica squealing and stuff breaking. There are clothes strewn all over the floor, and, okay this was fast. Sweets and Jessica are in bed together, post-coital. Sweets thinks he pulled a muscle. Jessica wants to go get the steak and beer, but Sweets thinks he should clean up first. Jessica suggests just getting a new apartment. I guess they’re a thing now. It seems Jessica was softening up near the end there, so I hope that continues.
CJ Stevens falls asleep every night to the comforting flicker of her TV. Nothing makes her happier than the little red dot on her dv-r, notifying her one of her shows is taping. She edits books for a living and was even known among her editing comrades as “the grammar police.” Ending apostrophe abuse is her calling.