This week's episode of Bones, "The Bullet in the Brain", was one of the best they've ever made. For longtime viewers, the infamous Gravedigger (Deirdre Lovejoy), a serial killer who once buried Brennan (Emily Deschanel) and Hodgins (T.J. Thyne) alive, made her fourth and final appearance. Her screen time in her final episodes was brief (she was gone before the opening credits), but more than memorable. In fact, she not only had a profound effect on some of the cast, but also kicked off a brand new ongoing arc that will play out this winter and spring.
The most effected by the whole incident, in which the Gravedigger's head was graphically blown off, was probably Sweets (John Francis Daley), who was shaken inside and out. His suit was a mess from the splatter, but the biggest problem was what the Gravedigger had said to him before she was killed. Sweets replayed those words over and over again to himself, though, as a trained mental health professional, he should have known it was a bad idea. Her words seeped into his brain and took root, shaking his confidence in himself and his abilities. Thankfully, Ms. Julian (Patricia Belcher) was able to get him out of his funk.
It makes me wonder, though, how much of the effect she had was multiplied by her sudden death. Did the traumatic experience of standing a few feet from her during the assassination make Sweets more vulnerable? Brennan and Booth (David Boreanaz) have criticized him on plenty of occasions, especially when he first joined the team, though that has lightened up over time. He had to have had a thick skin then to not be wounded. Now, after his talents have proved invaluable over and over again, he was so deeply moved. There was obviously more going on in his head than just some mean comments. I was worrying he might do something drastic, but am so happy it didn't come to that.