“Bones,” one of the longest-running will-they-won’t-they shows on TV, finally comes to a close Tuesday night after 12 seasons of murder.
Two hundred and forty-five episodes of forensic anthropologist Temperance Brennan (Emily Deschanel) and FBI agent Seeley Both (David Boreanaz) flirting around dead bodies told the stories of Angela Montenegro (Michaela Conlin), Jack Hodgins (T.J. Thyne), Camille Saroyan (Tamara Taylor), Lance Sweets (John Francis Daley) and a revolving cast of “squinterns.”
But somehow, Hart Hanson’s underrated drama balanced the larger romances with weekly, and sometimes season-long, stories that stayed fresh — even if the corpses didn’t.
As “Bones” ends at 9 p.m. on Tuesday, we take a look at the crime drama’s best moments:
Booth and Brennan’s second kiss (“The Santa in the Slush,” season 3, episode 9)
Under strong duress from Caroline Julian (Patricia Belcher), the forensic anthropologist and the FBI agent share their second kiss — and the first in real-time — under the Christmas mistletoe. Booth and Brennan maintained their strict professional line for a few more seasons, but the 100th episode of “Bones” kept viewers coming back for more.
Zack revealed as Gormogon’s apprentice (“The Pain in the Heart,” season 3, episode 15)
Brennan’s clueless, genius intern (Eric Millegan) turned out to be a serial killer/cannibal’s apprentice in one of the more surprising twists of the show.
The final run of episodes brought that conviction back into question, but Zack’s mangled hands told the story of betrayal that shook the Jeffersonian.
Booth’s brain tumor (“The End in the Beginning,” season 4, episode 25)
An alternate reality episode created by Booth’s brain tumor thrust the Jeffersonian staff and squinterns into an old-fashioned nightclub with new costumes and the same old murders.
The episode itself was ridiculous fun, if not a little cheesy, but Booth’s face when he realizes he isn’t actually married to his partner is one of the most heartbreaking moments of the entire show.
Angela and Hodgins get married in jail (“The Witch in the Wardrobe,” season 5, episode 20)
Is “cell goals” a thing? Locked up for swerving by a cop from the crime scene, Angela and Hodgins finally get over their weirdness and Bug Boy gets down on one knee with the ring he’d carried in his wallet since their first wedding.
Vincent Nigel-Murray dies (“The Hole in the Heart,” season 6, episode 22)
The most endearing squintern brought in to replace Zack, Vincent Nigel-Murray (Ryan Cartwright) met his tragic end from a Broadsky (Arnold Vosloo) shot meant for Booth.
His breathless “don’t make me leave” sends Brennan running for comfort in first Booth’s apartment, then his bed.
Brennan tells Booth she’s having his baby (“The Change in the Game,” season 6, episode 23)
From the bowling alley to Angela’s hospital bed where she’s given birth to a perfectly healthy boy, Brennan keeps her secret until the last scene: she’s pregnant and it’s Booth’s.
His hesitant smile was a bright spot in the series’ most depressing run.
Brennan gives birth (“The Prisoner in the Pipe,” season 7, episode 7)
An entire episode of bickering in prison comes to a predictable end when Brennan gives birth to Christine in a barn — the Joseph and Mary metaphor wasn’t lost on many.
It’s all incredibly cheesy, but Booth and Brennan’s happiness is so fleeting that you take what you can get.
Booth and Brennan get married (“The Woman in White,” season 9, episode 6)
The Gravedigger was long dead, but her long-term effect on the team arises during Booth and Brennan’s heartwarming episode — the forensic anthropologist’s vows are the letter she wrote to her partner when she was buried alive.
Plus, look how happy everyone is!
Sweets dies (“The Conspiracy in the Corpse,” season 10, episode 1)
A season-long conspiracy that left Booth in prison at the end of season 9 came to a tearful end when Lance Sweets, expecting a baby with girlfriend Daisy Wick (Carla Gallo) is shot in a parking garage.
Daley later revealed that he’d asked to be killed off to work on directing and producing, and his death opened up a new role for James Aubrey (John Boyd) but the little duck’s fatal finale left viewers as heartbroken as Booth was.
Hodgins is paralyzed in an explosion (“The Doom in the Boom,” season 11, episode 10)
An explosion outside a crime scene left Hodgins bruised and battered, but walking out of the hospital after protecting Aubrey from the blast.
Unfortunately, nothing good ever lasts and Hodgins wound up paralyzed from the waist down after swelling around his spinal cord. Zack, from prison, couldn’t help either.
Hodgins eventually finds peace with his wheelchair but the process but undue stress on his marriage.