The second episode - 8.11 - was one of the best episodes of the series as far as science verging on science fiction, so let's start with that. A murdered archeologist leads the team to killings some 25,000 ago, and those victims turn out to be a Neanderthal / Cro Magnon couple, with a three-year old daughter. Bone says this is the first hybrid child - which is not quite the case, because who knows how many earlier hybrid Neanderthal Cro Magnons there were, which we just do not know about - but it's the first hybrid discovered and an incredible discovery.
Science break: Neanderthals lived for hundreds of thousands of years, until about 25,000 years ago. Cro-Magnons, which is what we are, appeared about 40, 000 years ago. No hard physical evidence of their interaction, let alone interbreeding, has been discovered to date, but it's a safe or at least reasonable bet that they did, because they inhabited the same areas and there is some genetic overlap. The possibilities have long intrigued scientists and science fiction writers, including me (see The Silk Code).
Back to prehistoric Bones: the astonishing discovery provides a great occasion for Bones coming to terms with her super-competitiveness. She allows Clark to get the credit and lead the team in its explication of what happened to that Neanderthal / Cro Magnon family all those years ago. It's a story of racial hatred, ever plaguing our species, but also of love transcending through the ages. Sadly beautiful, really.
Meanwhile, Bones solves the crime in the present with Booth's help - as they also do in episode 8.10, which could be called them dancin' Bones. Yes, Bones and Booth do a nice waltz, and figure out who killed the pretty ballerina.
But the real story here - in 8.10 - is Angela, who wants to rekindle her relationship with art, shunted aside for eight years in her work for the detectives of the Jeffersonian. If science was the hero of 8.11, art was the star in 8.10, in both dance and painting. The two shows together provide a portrait of what a cultural force Bones is - a series that goes so far beyond the usual detective show as to be its own new genre. Art and science, Neanderthal and Cro-Magnon, Booth and Bones ...
But lest we forget its detective moorings, Bones will be back next week with what looks to be a riveting encounter with its criminal nemesis.
See also Bones 8.1: Walk Like an Egyptian ... Bones 8.2 of Contention ... Bones 8.3: Not Rotting Behind a Desk ... Bones 8.4: Slashing Tiger and Donald Trump ... Bones 8.5: Applesauce on Election Eve ... Bones 8.6: Election Day ... Bones 8.7: Dollops in the Sky with Diamonds ...Bones 8.8: The Talking Remains ... Bones 8.9: I Am A Camera
And see also Bones 7.1: Almost Home Sweet Home ... Bones 7.2: The New Kid and the Fluke ...Bones 7.3: Lance Bond and Prince Charmington ... Bones 7.4: The Tush on the Xerox ... Bones 7.5: Sexy Vehicle ... Bones 7.6: The Reassembler ... Bones 7.7: Baby! ... Bones 7.8: Parents ...Bones 7.9: Tabitha's Salon ... Bones 7.10: Mobile ... Bones 7.11: Truffles and Max ... Bones 7.12: The Corpse is Hanson ... Bones Season 7 Finale: Suspect Bones
And see also Bones 6.1: The Linchpin ... Bones 6.2: Hannah and her Prospects ... Bones 6.3 at the Jersey Shore, Yo, and Plymouth Rock ... Bones 6.4 Sans Hannah ... Bones 6.5: Shot and Pretty ... Bones 6.6: Accidental Relations ... Bones 6.7: Newman and "Death by Chocolate" ...Bones 6.8: Melted Bones ... Bones 6.9: Adelbert Ames, Jr. ... Bones 6.10: Reflections ... Bones 6.11: The End and the Beginning of a Mystery ... Bones 6.12 Meets Big Love ... Bones 6.13: The Marrying Kind ... Bones 6.14: Bones' Acting Ability ... Bones 6.15: "Lunch for the Palin Family" ...Bones 6.16: Stuck in an Elevator, Stuck in Times ... Bones 6.17: The 8th Pair of Feet ... Bones 6.18: The Wile E. Chupacabra ... Bones 6.19 Test Runs The Finder ... Bones 6.20: This Very Statement is a Lie ... Bones 6.21: Sensitive Bones ... Bones 6.22: Phoenix Love ... Bones Season 6 Finale: Beautiful
And see also Bones: Hilarity and Crime and Bones is Back For Season 5: What Is Love? and 5.2: Anonymous Donors and Pipes and 5.3: Bones in Amish Country and 5.4: Bones Meets Peyton Place and Desperate Housewives and Ancient Bones 5.5 and Bones 5.6: A Chicken in Every Viewer's Pot and Psychological Bones 5.7 and Bones 5.8: Booth's "Pops" and Bones 5.9 Meets Avatar and Videogamers ... Bad Santa, Heart-Warming Bones 5.10 ... Bones 5.11: Of UFOs, Bloggers, and Triangles ... Bones 5.12: A Famous Skeleton and Angela's Baby ... Love with Teeth on Bones 5.13 ... Faith vs. Science vs. Psychology in Bones 5.14 ... Page 187 in Bones 5.15 ...Bones 100: Two Deep Kisses and One Wild Relationship ... Bones 5.17: The Deadly Stars ...Bones Under Water in 5.18 ... Bones 5.19: Ergo Together ... Bones 5.20: Ergo Together ... Bones 5.21: The Rarity of Happy Endings ... Bones Season 5 Finale: Eye and Evolution
"Combining Neanderthals and mechanical looms, cantaloupes and coded butterflies, Levinson's debut novel...offers a flurry of amazing prehistoric technologies, demonstrating that the mysteries of our past can be just as fruitful as those of our future... Levinson creatively explain gaps in both ancient history and biology... providing more wonders than many a futuristic epic." -- Publishers Weekly