Clearly, “Bones” wanted you to be completely blindsided by their season 10 premiere. While some other shows choose to hype up a character death in advance, it feels almost like Fox’s marketing time misdirected us by talking so much about Booth in prison. We like to think we have a good finger on the pulse, but we never saw this one coming.
So why kill off Sweets in the way that we saw tonight? Ultimately, this decision was made for the primary focus of giving the story a little adrenaline while at the same time accommodating what is a burgeoning career for John Francis Daley behind the camera. Speaking to TVLine, executive producer Stephen Nathan had the following to say about the process that went into figuring this out:
“It was a complicated and very difficult decision for us. John’s career as a writer and director has been taking off over the past few years, and… [this fall he’s helming] a remake of National Lampoons’ Vacation, which coincided with the start of the season. We didn’t know what to do. And then we realized that this fit in very well with the conspiracy arc [that landed Booth in jail]. It gives us something very rich and very emotional to play within the first half of the season. Everybody’s affected very deeply by this. And it also seemed to be a surprising way to start the season. Usually when characters meet their ends on a series it’s at the end of the season.”
By and large we’d say that Nathan is correct about the latter point, though “Chicago Fire” did something similar earlier this week, and while “NCIS” didn’t kill off Ziva, they did write her off in the opening episodes of last season. It’s tough to lose a character that you’ve come to appreciate over the years; it is even harder when that moment ultimately comes out of nowhere.
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