It’s Four Squints and a Funeral, if you consider Booth an honorary squint. Booth, Bones, Angela and Hodgins are on their way to the funeral of a Jeffersonian coworker, and that is how “Bones and Booth Get Lost in Translation” begins. Bones complains that she shouldn’t have to go to an all-day grieving event when she didn’t even know the deceased, who died of a congenital heart defect. Hodgins knew him. He was kind of a friend. Cam is more concerned about the living than the dead. Her new daughter is sixteen years old and she just caught her smoking.
They arrive at the deceased’s house for the wake. Sweets and Angela are already there. (No interns this week!) The funeral director Franklin Tung invites everyone for the viewing and then into the family room for reminiscences. Hodgins points out Amy Veleska, the late Dr. Hank Reilly’s assistant. She’s really broken up over her boss’s death.
Bones recognizes a lot of people from work, including Dr. Jonah Amayo from the Caribbean Department. One of the guests recognizes her. He’s not from work, though. He is Barney Reilly, the deceased’s brother and a fellow author.
As each person views the body, they do something a little different. Hodgins leaves a folded up bill on the corpse (I think he’s paying off a bet); Cam comments on how peaceful the body looks (no more worrying about his pension plan taking a beating in the markets); Angela looks sad; Booth takes the bill off the body and pockets it (what – like the dead guy’s going to spend it?); the mom takes a whiff from her oxygen tank and looks in the coffin; so does the brother. Amy lays a rose down on her boss’s cold, lifeless hand. Mrs. Reilly, the widow in the front row, is not at all pleased with that gesture.
Booth ushers Bones up to the coffin and tells her she has to look.
I’m just going to say this once tonight. In what was otherwise a really funny episode, the writers seem to have forgotten that Bones is A CERTIFIED FORENSIC ANTHROPOLOGIST. She has experienced death rites all over the world and damn well knows how to act in any given funeral-type situation. She is not a moron. Neither are we. This whole lack-of-social-skills thing has gone waaaaaaaaaaaaay too far. Find your laughs elsewhere.
Bones looks at the deceased. She moves the rose, which has rolled off the dead man’s hand. In doing so, she touches his chest. And then starts feeling up the corpse. Booth rushes up to her, saying “You really suck at this.” Bones replies, “He didn’t die from a congenital heart failure. He was murdered.”
Booth hauls Bones out onto the patio and hands her a drink. She does and chokes on it. “What is this?” “Whiskey. It’s a wake.” Bones reiterates that Reilly was murdered. Booth says she can’t say murder at a funeral. She must use a code word. Instead of murder, say “translation.” Okay, Reilly got translated. Booth asks if she isn’t making this about her. No. She definitely felt cracked ribs when she moved the rose. It was a translation, damn it. Booth gives her more whiskey. When she asks why, he admits that he is trying to get her drunk so she shuts up.
Bones will not be denied. “Booth, we’re talking about translation here.” Booth asks if the coroner found any evidence of translation. No. Well, if she’s sure, he’ll talk to a judge tomorrow and get the body re-examined. That won’t work, Bones says, because the family is cremating the body right after the wake. They need to examine the body now! Booth says that taking the body out of a wake for an autopsy will scar the family for life. “But Booth, he’s been translated!” Booth agrees to call a judge for the injuction. He tells Bones to go back to the wake and stall. He even has her practice her “sad” face.
The mourners have started their stories. The wife tells a long, sad tale about how she made her beloved husband tea every morning and asks what she is going to do before breakfasts now. She is completely toasted. It’s good to know that they didn’t skimp on the refreshments.
Back in the viewing room, Booth informs Bones that the judge denied his request, mostly because he didn’t want to give her more material as a pulp fiction writer. She vehemently denies the “pulp” part. Anyway, she has proof. She has taken a cell-phone photo of bruises on the deceased’s chest. Booth says she can’t get caught undressing the corpse and says he will go to the door and stand guard.
“Stand guard for what?” Cam asks as she enters the room. Although at first she is horrified, she agrees with Bones that the medical report showed no mention of bruising. “See, Booth, he was translated.” Booth says that they must talk to the funeral director.
They search the house and Bones finds the funeral director. In the bathroom with the widow. The widow exits and says it’s her house and she can do who she wants. Generally, it’s “what she wants” but that might have been the whiskey talking. They nab Franklin, who says it is his job to take care of the bereaved. Honey, there is no way that is in your job description. They show him the picture and he says that the bruise appeared after embalming, which is not an uncommon occurence. The rib breaks were from his assistant administering CPR. And now he is going to go take care of some of the other guests.
Booth asks if Bones is happy now. No, she’s not. Those aren’t the ribs that would break in CPR. This was still a case of translation.
Hodgins steps up in the family room to share his memories of the dearly departed. Hank always had a joke, good or bad. Usually bad. He doesn’t get much further along that that when he looks out the window and see that Bones and Booth have decided that Hank needs to spend a weekend at Bernie’s. “Poor Hank! Where is he going? Um, heaven? Heaven!” Hodgins loses it completely but does a good job at keeping everyone’s attention on him. His speech goes down in flames and even the drunk widow is looking at him funny.
Bones and Booth drag the body out to the street. Cam zooms up. “Your car was blocked in so I took Angela’s Matrix.” That wasn’t awkward product placement at all. They dump Bernie Hank into the back seat. Booth says they can’t leave the body lying across the seat – it’ll look dead. If it’s upright, Hank will just look drunk. They sit him up and Cam thoughtfully does up his seatbelt. Safety first. Even if you are already dead. Booth sends Bones and Cam back to the lab while he stays behind to make sure nobody looks in the casket.
Angela corners Hodgins in the dining room. What happened with your toast? He doesn’t have time to tell her before Assistant Amy comes over to tell Hodgins that his speech was wonderful. Hodgins commiserates with Amy. It must have been so hard finding her boss on the floor like that. Had Hank been complaining of chest pains? Angela wonders if Hodgins is channelling Bones with his lack of tack. Amy says no, he was fine when he left. He was going out for a sushi lunch; sometimes they ate together but she doesn’t like sushi. After she hugs him and leaves, Angela says that she’s going to warn the caterers that the whiskey they are serving is 150 proof. When she demands to know what the hell is going on, Hodgins tells her that Bones and Booth helped Bones and Cam to sneak the corpse out of the house. They think that Hank has been translated! “What?” “Murdered!”
Angela intends to confront Booth in the viewing room but she can’t say anything because the deceased’s mother arrives. She wants to spend a couple personal minutes with her son. Angela says no. She says the funeral director did a bad job; Hank’s makeup is peeling and his nose is falling off. Mom takes a suck from her O2 tank and rushes off to find the funeral director.
Meanwhile, back at the lab, Cam and Bones find several stab wounds that have been filled with mortician’s putty. They aren’t knife wounds; they are circular and 3/8th inch in diameter. Cam hold up a blood-draining-thingy that a coroner would use. About this big. Hank was stabbed seven times in the heart. Once again, Cam gets to sum up the weird circumstances. The victim had a heart attack, was declared dead by the paramedics and the medical examiner, and was sent to the funeral home where he was stabbed to death by the mortician. Hank had a bad day.
Bones and Cam set up a video conference via laptop. Booth drags Franklin to his car for the interview. They tell him to explain the stab wounds and he admits to stabbing the corpse. It was late. Everyone else had gone home. He cleaned the body and set up the arterial pump. Just when he inserted the needle the body sat up. It was a reflex! So was stabbing the zombie in the heart seven times. Then the body lay back down and he vacuumed the blood out of it.
Booth wants to know why there was no autopsy. Cam explains that the deceased had a known heart condition and exhibited all the signs of a heart attack. Booth says that may be so but how did they all think he was dead. Bones suggests paralysis. Cam says that even after embalming, some of the toxin might be left in the viscuous fluid in his eye, so she pulls out a humungous needle and jams it into the dead, foggy eyeball. Cam updates the chain-of-death scenario. They now believe that he was mimicking death when he was sent to the funeral home, he came out of the paralytic coma when the funeral director inserted the needle into his femoral artery, he sat up and Franklin stabbed him but he would have died anyway because he had been poisoned first. Hank had a really bad day.
Bones returns to the wake while Cam runs more tests. Booth and Bones bring Angela and Hodgins up to speed. Poor Hank was poisoned with tetradoxin. Since that is a controlled substance, Angela offers to look it up on Booth’s laptop because he has access to the databases she needs. She and Booth go off to investigate, leaving Hodgins and Bones behind with instructions not to let anyone near the casket.
Angela discovers that 3 grams of the toxin were sent to the Jeffersonian, Caribbean Department, Dr. Amayo. They run off to question him. “Excuse me, doctor, how does a Class 1 neurotoxin affect Caribbean Studies?” “I know!” Dr. Sweets exclaims. They really should have specified which doctor they were addressing. “Zombies!” That is the drug used in Santeria. Being an equal opportunity offender, Bones manages to insult that religion as as well. Sweets tries to cover his colleague’s complete lack of tact and draw the other doctor away when Hodgins spits out his news. The late Hank had sushi for lunch the day he died. Maybe the poison was in the food, or he got blowfish poisoning. It’s always the blowfish.
Bones instructs the funeral director not to let anyone look in the coffin while they run off to investigate this new lead. “What am I supposed to say?” he asks. She tells him to tell people that the body is suffering from fluid leakage and he had to take it away to repair it. If I heard that, I wouldn’t want to see it or hear any more details.
Booth and Bones go to the restaurant, which turns out to be a dead end. Sweets returns to the room where he left his friends but they are all gone. He stays behind and tries to comfort a freaked-out Franklin, who’s day started really well with boffing the widow and has turned into a necro-nightmare. Sweets is a trained psychologist; he knows the stresses of Franklin’s job. Franklin nods at the weird man. “Stresses. There’s so much pressure! This job…” Sweets tells him that he has nothing to feel guilty about. Franklin looks a bit more relieved. If a psychologist says what he did was okay… Sweets asks if he was close to the deceased. Franklin offers him a little smile and says he was closer to the deceased’s wife.
Booth and Bones can’t get to Cam. Sweets stops them and asks what is going on. They confess. Booth tells him that he must stall the family from their final viewing while they collect Hank and return him to his coffin. Sweets admits that he may have told Franklin not to feel guilty about killing poor Hank. It’s not his fault. They should have told him that Franklin stabbed him to death. Sweets is uncomfortable being left behind when a poisoner is running around loose. It’s not a poisoner – it’s a translator! So they modify the plan.
Booth runs into a new herring person in the kitchen. She is Erin Miller, the family lawyer. She is the one who had lunch with Hank on the day he died. Booth sympathizes. She says it was a business lunch and she can’t discuss it. But it wasn’t pleasant. She argued with Hank.
Meanwhile, back at the lab, Hodgins and Sweets have arrived to pick up the body. Fortunately by now, Cam has determined that Hank wasn’t poisoned at lunch; the herring didn’t kill him. Neither did the yellowfin tuna. At the wake, the wife specifically said that Hank didn’t eat in the moring; he only had tea. If he he wasn’t poisoned at lunch, it must have been at breakfast. They are done with the body, but Cam is having a little trouble covering up the evidence of her mucking around in the corpse. His face is a little funny-looking now.
Booth is desperately trying to stall the family. A rendition of “Amazing Grace” leaves Amy distraught and the widow pawing at the closest young buck. Hank’s mom looks a little upset but brother Barney doesn’t appear to be grieving at all. That’s suspicious.
Bones arrives to let Booth know that the body is on the property and the others are trying to return it. Booth sends her over to use her feminine wiles to get some information from Barney. Booth, do you know your partner at all this year?
Bones goes over and reintroduces herself, asking Barney to call her “Temperance”. She asks about his latest book, and Barney informs her that he is not published yet. He asks for an introduction to her publisher, but she sidesteps the question (not neatly) and suggests he go the self-publishing route. He can’t afford it. “Well, Barney, with your brother dead, I’m sure you’ll be coming into an inheritance.” No, not really. He and Hank were only step-brothers and Hank got the lion’s share of the trust money. “But Hank’s dead now.” Hey, you’re right. I can afford to self-publish! Barney leaves her in the dust as he goes to track down the lawyer to see how much money he’s about to collect.
After the singing, Amy offers her condolences to the widow. “Don’t call me Helen, you tramp!” screeches the loaded widow. “Don’t even talk to me. I am Mrs. Hank Reilly and you are Hank’s skank!” Amy insists that she only respected her boss. The widow wants to know how many times a week she “respected” him.
Meanwhile, Hodgins, Sweets and Cam approach the viewing room window… from the outside. Hodgins helps pass the body through the window, as Frankin looks on in horror, but then Hodgins takes off to find Bones.
The assistant/widow catfight continues. The mom, Barney, Dr. Amoyo and lawyer Erin all look on. Booth tries to break up the catfight by saying that Hank would want this. “Actually,” Barney says, “he would if there were Jello.” Everybody loves Jello. Booth says they need more singing and less fighting. He bursts into song, “Swing low, sweet chariot…”
Hodgins has met up with Bones in the kitchen and they start testing the teas. They quickly find the poisoned one. Now all they have to do is find the translator.
Cam finally has Hank back in his coffin. The funeral director peers over and asks where Hank’s glasses are. Damn! We left them at the lab. Erin comes in to pay her final respects. Franklin stalls long enough for Cam to pull out her own sunglasses and put them on the corpse. With a final adjustment to the body’s mouth to make him smile, Cam steps away. Erin takes a peek and says that Franklin did a fine job; Hank looks happy. Um, thanks?
Bones and Booth confront the widow about her eulogy speech. She specifically said that she brewed Hank’s tea every morning. She says she lied; Hank was too particular about how his tea was made so he did it himself.
As the squints drive home, they have no idea how to find the translator or who it could be. Hank was cheating, the widow was cheating. Cam’s primary concern is still how she can get Michelle to stop smoking. Booth gives her some parental advice; if she stops, Michelle will stop. But that doesn’t answer their question.
Bones has an idea. What if they tricked the poisoner by brewing the tea and having everyone at the graveside service have a cup in Hank’s honor? Only the translator would know the tea was poisoned and would thus reveal himself or herself by refusing to drink the tea! That may be the dumbest thing Hodgins has ever heard. I’m starting to agree with the judge who declined the injuction because if her plots are this bad, heaven help her fans. Booth, though, loyal to the end, thinks it is a fabulous idea.
At the graveside, Bones pops up and says she didn’t get a chance to say goodbye at the wake. She says she would like everyone to have a cup of Hank’s favourite tea as a final send off. Everyone is about to drink, when Hank’s mom knocks the cup from Barney’s hand. Booth is shocked. “You poisoned your own son?” Hank was her step-son. Barney is her real son. Erin says that it is all her fault. The lunch meeting was to inform Hank that the mother was siphoning money from the trust fund to give to Barney. The mom says the lawyer should have minded her own business. She takes a suck on her O2 tank and continues. “It doesn’t matter now. Hank is dead. What’s the worst that could happen?”
Five days later…
Booth and Bones console Barney at his mother’s graveside. She died because she used her medications to poison Hank and then didn’t have her pills when she needed them. Ah, fate.
As they leave the cemetary, Booth asks for a favour. When he’s dead and gone, he wants Bones to come visit him sometimes. Even though she’d feel foolish, she shockingly agrees. He wants to know why. Because you asked her too, twit! No, says Bones, because it would give her a chance to look at herself through his eyes and try to live up to what he thought of her. Booth says that is the nicest thing anybody’s ever said to him. Then he asks for another favour. Before they put him in the ground, he wants her to make sure he’s dead. That is one promise the ever-practical Bones is happy to make.