This episode, as you might be able to tell by the title, is a little different from the normal Bones case. Based on a book series about “The Locator,” the Bones team has made a deal for a spin-off. Rather than spin-off one of our beloved characters, they chose to introduce a new set of characters, so this episode actually functions as a de facto pilot episode for The Finder.
Booth and Brennan zoom in a airboat down a gorgeous part of the Everglades (and to their credit, there isn’t a single stereotypical shot of a gator). A park ranger leads them to the dumped body, which Brennan quickly discerns is a male in his late twenties. He’s got a fake eye with a serial number still on it, so that’ll make IDing the body easier. He was Sam Nozik, a security guard at a Miami museum. They speak to Lambert Chaisson, the head curator, who reveals that Sam hadn’t reported for work after he was caught on security cameras stealing an 18th century treasure map. A map that hadn’t even been authenticated yet. The map fragments weren’t found on the body, so if they find the map, they find the killer. Conveniently, Booth knows a guy with the finder power.
The guy is Walter Sherman. B&B find him in a bar with his two cohorts. Ike, the cockney, spunky female bartender/pilot is the Systems Analyst. She can figure out the people situation in one glance of a room. She also has a tendency to mispronounce words, so we know she’s street smart, rather than book smart. Leo is the big black legal advisor. He’s a peaceful man, but can take down a biker when he needs to. Walter is… well… he’s a bit off. Extremely paranoid (and with a pre-existing antagonistic relationship with Booth), he demands to see proof that they’re actually with the FBI. When Brennan hands over her ID, he examines it throughly even biting it, leading Booth to have to wrestle it away from him. This doesn’t seem to be anything out of the ordinary to Leo and Ike.
Once Walter and Booth sort out their issues, Walter watches the video from the security camera and spots that the victim was blind in one eye very quickly. He asks B&B if they’re sleeping together and when they deny it, he asks Brennan “Would you sleep with me?” My husband respects this as quite an effortless chat up line. Booth tells him that if he finds the map, maybe he’s got a shot, to which Brennan slaps him on the arm appropriately. Walter also notices that Nozik was drunk while he was stealing the map and after a moment, he agrees to find the map, but he’s just the finder… it’s their job to catch the killer, not his. Booth and Brennan leave and Brennan doubts Walter’s finder power, so Walter takes on the challenge. He asks her to name something she’s lost and she tells him about a 7th grade science fair medal.
The Finder Team of Walter, Ike and Leo head to Nozik’s place to check it out. Ike discerns that he was living within his means, so he was no master thief… he was hired to steal that map. As Walter goes to find a way into the apartment, Leo and Ike discuss whether Walter is crazy or gifted. Ike worries about the day that he can’t find what he’s looking for and Leo suggests that maybe that’s why they’re with him. Once Walter is in the apartment, he takes a look around and then strips down to his boxers and makes himself home. I’m sure that for plot reasons, he’s taking in every inch of the victim’s home and life, but frankly, it’s a little strange and creepy. However, if this is how he’s going to investigate every case (ie: with those gorgeous abs on display), then this show is going on my Tivo season pass right now.
[pullquote]if this is how he’s going to investigate every case (ie: with those gorgeous abs on display), then this show is going on my Tivo season pass right now.[/pullquote]
He’s on the toilet soaking up some more life (or just taking a dump) when Ike calls to see how he’s getting on. He tells her that he’s deduced that Nozik was clinically depressed, no girlfriend, weight issues, health problems, recently sold everything except some crime books, where Walter finds a pawn ticket. No pets, friends or computer”¦ the guy was dying. No liquor in the house, so Walter thinks that the guy got some liquid courage before he was set to steal the map and tried to hold out for more money, leading to him getting dumped in a swamp. Brennan phones him as well and she’s discovered that the guy was dying, too, as well as confirming Walter’s suspicion that the guy had been tortured.
At the pawn shop, Walter is on the phone to someone in Germany working on Brennan’s medal and the team notices that the shop is all set up for receiving stolen goods. Leo advises Walter against trying to redeem the ticket, but Walter says “I’ma risk it,” which I’m pretty sure is his catchphrase, kids. Sure enough, the woman in the shop knows that he’s not Nozik. Ike gets on her good side by letting her in on the fact that the cops have installed surveillance in the store, under the guise of shutting her down for code violations. She gives them the pawned ukulele, which is smashed up. A girl got to it first and fished out a piece of paper from it. The woman doesn’t know her name, but she had a tattoo saying “Do Not Resuscitate” on her chest. The team heads to a tattoo place, where Walter has helped the owner previously. One of the larger, more intimidating tattoo artists recognizes the description and gets a bit defensive. Walter ids the blue spider web tattoo on his head as a sign that he’s in the meth trade and almost gets choked for it. Leo’s skill of being a little intimidating himself comes in handy as he takes the tattoo artist down.
They get a name from the guy: Brittany Stephenson and the name of the bar where she works. Walter hits on her and follows her home”¦ again, creepy, Walter”¦ creepy. She gets on a boat called the Screw You and Walter is sure that someone’s watching them and a type of telescope on the bow of the boat worries him, too. He’s concerned for her and seems deeply connected to her even though they just met. She gets on the boat and tells him that if this works out, he’ll never see her again, but Walter swears he’ll find her. He tells her that she’s beautiful and she gives him a goodbye kiss. I feel like I’ve missed some deep relationship between them in the five seconds I was telling my husband to take the dog out. Weird.
Ike flies Walter up to DC where he gives Brennan the medal and she is genuinely awed. He asks if she’s impressed, and explains that he’d like to impress her “for the usual reasons.” Also in the box is a picture of her and her mom, which Brennan is speechless at. “It’s amazing how often people ask me to find something and the real treasure is something else altogether,” he observes. Delivering the medal isn’t the only reason that Walter came to DC, though”¦ he wants to know if someone can recreate the missing chart from the security video footage. Brennan tells him that Angela is his girl. When meeting Angela and Hodgins, Walter reveals that he’s about as tactful as Brennan was circa Season 1 as he asks bluntly if Hodgins is rich. When Hodgins wants to know why, Walter explains that Angela is an eleven and Hodgins is a 7″¦ money explains the difference. That’s only because you haven’t seen Hodgins with his shirt off, Walter”¦ he definitely goes up a few points when that comes off. Anyway, Angela puts together the map and suspects that the Prime Meridian the navigator used for Longitude isn’t Greenwich, but Rome, which was common for devout Catholics. That would put the ship near Key West. The Finder team head back to Key West and go diving. After we get some pretty diving shots, Walter finds Brittany’s body near a reef.
The body is sent to DC, and Cam suspects drowning, but finds something else when she’s feeling around Brittany’s neck. Too far in to swallow on her own, it’s part of the map. There’s blood on it and some of it isn’t hers. It’s probably from the bitten off finger that they find stuck in her throat, too. Walter spreads some of the blood around on the map and sees a hidden image of three nails. He quickly explains that since that’s the map, his job is done and he hands over an invoice for his expenses on the case. The shifty look on his face (and the 15 minutes left in the episode) tell me this isn’t over yet. Sure enough, when Walter gets home he visits a treasure hunter turned Catholic Bishop (Walter helped him find religion). The Bishop confirms that the three nails mean that the navigator was a Jesuit, who would have measured the Prime Meridian from the Copernican Observatory on Monte Mario, not from Rome. Before he leaves, the Bishop wants to discuss the brain damage that Walter suffered in Iraq, but Walter feels like he’s been tricked into that discussion and leaves briskly. In a cafÃ©, we get some of that exposition we’ve been missing about Walter. The unspecified brain damage makes him uber paranoid, but it also gives him his finder “gift.” He sees the way that everything in the world is connected to each other and he’s afraid that if he gets treatment for it, he’ll lose his mojo.
Up in DC, Hodgins has found the nails on the chart and realized the Jesuit thing, too. Angela explains the Longitude issue. At the same time that Angela is using her magic computer to figure out where the coordinates point to, Walter is doing the same with string in the bar. Booth is sure that Walter must have figured it out and that’s why he bolted. Angela doubts the finder power, but even Brennan seems to buy into it. Walter goes diving again and lo and behold, there’s a ship. He brings a Mary statue to the museum curator, authenticating the map, when he notices that the curator’s hand is bandaged up. The curator goes very cold, asking what they want to keep quiet. Walter hits him a couple of times with the statue and states that he wants Brittany not to be dead. Walter seems to be okay with the idea of killing the curator there, but the only weapon he has is the Mary statue and of all the things he would risk, he wouldn’t risk offended Leo’s faith by doing that.
In DC, Booth grumbles that he hates that Walter found the treasure before him and wants to find something”¦ anything to arrest him for. Brennan finally asks why Booth hates Walter so much. When Rebecca was in labor with Parker, Booth was desperate to be there but couldn’t get leave. So he went AWOL. The Military Police sent Walter to find him and right after he held his newborn son for the first time, Walter handcuffed him to take him back. He says that Walter just doesn’t understand that sometimes, you have to look the other way. As B&B walk down a street, a van with Ike and Leo turns up and they put a large box on the sidewalk. Booth wants them to hand over the treasure, but Leo points out that, on his advice, Walter had already quit his consultancy before discovering the treasure. Anyway, he returned it to the original owners, the Roman Catholic Church. They drive away and B&B realize that there’s no treasure in the box”¦ there’s a body. Booth wants to track them down on kidnapping charges, but Brennan reminds him to look the other way. In the box is Lambert Chaisson, the curator, and his bandaged hand.
Back down in Florida, the team debates which is sadder, being an optimist or a fool. Ike notes that the only thing poor Walter can’t find is lasting love, but Walter things that the “Bones lady” might be the one. Really, Walter?
Up in DC, Brennan has rationalized the finder power. She also tells Booth that she thinks that Walter did look the other way the day Parker was born”¦ he waited until after he had a chance to hold his son before he arrested him. Booth still doesn’t like him, though.
It’s hard to look at this as an episode of Bones, as it doesn’t really focus on the procedural aspects of the show that we usually get. We never know what Nozik’s cause of death was and they only cursorily mention what they think Brittany’s is. This is odd for a show that’s so focused on the truth. By all indications, The Finder will definitely have a different feel to it and Walter’s hair-trigger personality makes for interesting viewing, as we’re not sure what he will and won’t do. I think they set up the new show pretty well. What do you think?