Fighting with the Sky

Bones: The Gamer in the Grease

Posted on: December 4, 2009

It’s been a while since I’ve written about Bones, but I thought I should jump back on the wagon.  This week’s epsiode was about a gamer (famous for his high score on an old school game) was murdered.  The team investigated how he got his high score as well as his competitors.  On the side, Hodgins, Sweets, and the intern Colin Fisher have gotten three tickets for the movie Avatar so have to switch spots standing in line to get good seats for the movie.  It was entertaining only because they have to make up weird excuses to leave and for where they have been because they shouldn’t be standing in line for a movie while they are supposed to be working.

First off, how much do you think Avatar had to pay to get intertwined into the script like that?  It was kind of weird…not only because I don’t really understand what the movie is about, but that’s a conversation for another place.  Of course there were the gratuitous digs at how sci-fi nerds never get laid…but oh wait, Fisher is nearly 100 girls that he has slept with, so that disproves the myth, obviously.  I don’t always appreciate these kinds of comments.  I’m kind of a sci-fi nerd.  I don’t think an enthusiasm about science fiction is an automatic turn-off.

Speaking of this.  Sweets meets this girl in line for Avatar who completely throws herself at him and offers to show him the tattoos on her breasts multiple times.  He seems into it, but ultimately has to resist because he has a girlfriend.  But then Fisher shows up and they are introduced and automatically get into the tent to have sex.  I’m sorry, but how has loud, active sex in a flimsy tent while in a very busy line for a movie?  It just seemed really out of place and forced.  But then we got to have Hodgins be all sweet and comfort Sweets because he was feeling blue about the number of women whom he’s slept with.  It’s about the quality not the quantity, according to Hodgins.  And it’s all good, because Sweets has probably had sex more times that Fisher even though Fisher’s had more partners.  So isn’t that still about quantity?  Sweets said nothing about how good the sex is.  They just figured that having more sex was better than more partners.  While the sentiment was sweet, I didn’t really buy the argument in the end.

But I did like that they showed that not all “sci-fi nerds” are men, that women can enjoy sci-fi as well.  Even if their main example was a woman who would sleep with anyone who sounded like they had an interesting job.  Not the best representation of women sci-fi fans, but at least it’s a start.

There was a short little line about sexism in the gaming industry which I appreciated.  The top gamer now that this guy has been murdered is a woman.  Booth makes a comment about how it’s good for business because more people would pay to see a woman.  The woman “fights” back by saying that it shouldn’t be about the gamer’s gender but their skill.  I liked this woman.  She was pretty awesome.  And she even fixed her own machine!

And as always, I liked that there wasn’t a whole love of Bones/Booth relationship drama in this episode.  Always a fan when they do that.  But there was a lot of talk of sex in this episode, what with the counting of the partners and number of times and all.  I just don’t really understand why it should matter how many times you have had sex versus another person of how many partners so and so has had.  It should be about your experiences and what is best for you, not a competition among men to see how many chicks they can score.  And trying to say it’s about quality and not quantity does not count when your evidence of that is simply how many times you’ve had sex as opposed to the number of partners.

So here’s the thing with Bones recently…there hasn’t been a whole lot of storyline outside of the investigation in the episode.  Which is ok, the investigation is usually what I find most interesting, especially how they discover all of the things that they do.  But it’s kind of hard to write reviews of an episode when there’s not a lot outside of the investigation because that’s not really what I want to write about.

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3 Responses to "Bones: The Gamer in the Grease"

The wife was watching so I caught some of this episode. I saw the part where Hodgins was comforting Sweets on his masculine performativity and failing miserably at it. “It’s about quality not quantity, but I’m only going to point out that you have way more sex than that guy! You are a machine! Which makes you totally manlier.” Of course it wasn’t “You are in a relationship that doesn’t include fucking other people. You want cookies? For achieving minimum standards of behavior? Sir, please.” Or “Are you in a relationship that includes mutual affection and respect? Is that important to you or are you just looking to keep score?”

Aaaaaanyway. I hated the end so much. The guy was probably not actually a bad portrayal of a parent of a child witn an autism spectrum disorder because all the stuff he was saying about “My kid’s eyes are so emptyyyyyyyyyyy and the only thing he has is that gaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaame” are things that parents say. (Anna of FWD has helpfully provided a transcript of that hideous Autism Speaks ad; a link to it is in her <a href="http://bitchmagazine.org/post/were-not-looking-for-pity-the-trouble-with-poster-children"post at Bitch today, which seemed relevant.)

It’s heartbreaking. People on the autism spectrum communicate differently and often even the people closest to them don’t take the time to learn how they communicate. They just assume that because they — we — don’t communicate like neurotypical people they don’t communicate at all. Because we don’t display emotion the ways neurotypical people do, we’re assumed to not have emotions. We twitch and rock and flap our hands because it’s comforting and it disturbs the neurotypical so we are trained out of it, sometimes using pain as a negative reinforcement.

I’m sorry. It’s a long comment. It’s just… the closest anyone on the show came to challenging the father’s attitudes was saying that the kid didn’t care that the mailman had stolen his perfect game. Maybe not but that felt shitty too — everyone says that they can’t communicate with the kid but everyone somehow knows how he feels, what he wants and needs?

There was finally someone acknowledged to be on the spectrum on this damn show and it just hurt.

I completely agree with kaninchenzero. The way autism was handled in this show was cursory and offensive. I stood aghast at Brennan’s last line about the kid not caring about anything because of his autism. She of all people would understand autism, I would think. Grrrrr

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