On the last episode of Bones, we saw Brennan face an emotional challenge when she had to tell Wendell that he was suffering from Ewing’s sarcoma, which is a rare form of bone cancer with a high mortality rate.  Wendell thought he had a normal broken arm from playing hockey and initially decided to refrain from a rigorous course of treatment that offered little hope for a cure in favor of setting out to see the world. The intern ultimately turned to Brennan and Booth for support as he decided to fight for his life. This episode was quite moving, and I am hoping that we will continue to see Wendell for a long time to come.

This episode of Bones, titled “The Master in the Slop,” has Sweets busting out his chess skills as the team probes the murder of a chess champion. Sweets is certainly one talented man!

This Little Piggy

The show opens with Booth and Brennan eating breakfast in the house while Booth sings the praises of waffles. Brennan is more concerned with the fact that Christine took last place in an egg race. Soon enough, Brennan heads to the Jeffersonian to examine some remains that are found on a pig farm in the pig slop.

Cam brings back Dr. Filmore, the Canadian forensic podiatrist. Brennan is very unhappy with Cam’s choice, even when Cam explains that he is writing a report on the subject of forensic cooperation between the FBI and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. Brennan is further unnerved when Dr. Filmore explains that he has earned his PhD in forensic anthropology. Did I mention that Dr. Filmore also grew up on a pig farm?

Cam’s Award

Meanwhile, since there is no skull yet, Angela is pursuing her artistic bliss by painting in her office. Cam was contacted by “Science Monthly” to be in their outstanding women of science issue. Bravo, Cam! Cam is concerned that Brennan will be upset since she did not win the award this year.

Weird Science

Hodgins rigs up a contraption that will separate the remains from the liquid in the pig troughs. Sounds appetizing! Brennan finds evidence that the body was dismembered with a reciprocating saw, so Dr. Filmore’s suggestion that it could have been an accident is shot down. When the hose becomes clogged, Hodgins climbs up to check his fantastic creation, and when he restarts it, he blasts poor Dr. Filmore with the liquid and remains. Brennan tells him to stand still so she can peel pieces of the body off of him. Yikes!

Angela tells Brennan that Cam has won the prestigious award this year, and gently reminds Bones that she should be happy for Cam. Brennan also seizes the opportunity to tell Dr. Filmore of her own excellence in her field, which causes Dr. Filmore to makes notes about how Canadians must accept the ego of Americans. 

Hodgins finds the chemicals hempseed oil and beeswax on some hair. Since the victim is a blonde male, the brown hair that Hodgins examined could be from the killer. He also finds traces of chestnuts in the victim’s clothes, and Filmore explains that sometimes farmers sweetened the pig slop with them to encourage the pigs to eat.

Getting Away With Murder

The hair in the pig slop belongs to Jarrod Henry, who was acquitted of the crime because there was no body. It turns out that Henry disposed of another victim in the same manner. Booth interrogates Henry after they find the same type of saw in his garage. Henry admits to cutting up the body, but claims that someone tossed the body in his yard to set him up. When Henry realizes that Booth does not know the victim’s identity, he offers to help with a sketch of the victim.

Angela is able to identify the victim as Albert Magnuson, a famous chess player. Sweets is shocked, and lets Booth know that he, too, was quite the chess player until college. Sweets is hilarious!

Booth says that Magnuson was earning a lot of money from merchandise with his name and likeness, and all the money would now actually go to Levitt Holdings, and the chief officer, Suzanne Levitt.

More Money, More Problems

Booth and Sweets question Levitt, who is shocked by Magnuson’s death. She last saw him two days ago for lunch before he headed off to the chess club. Sweets picks up on the fact that Levitt and Magnuson had a romantic relationship, and she confirms that they were going to get married. Booth voices his concern that Levitt had total control over Magnuson’s finances. Levitt was home alone at the time of the victim’s death, and she points the finger at the chess champion’s ex-wife.

It turns out that Ingrid, Magnuson’s ex-wife, was a member of the strict Dutch Reformed Church. She never turned in her visitor’s visa, and Brennan believes that she will be difficult to find.

Lead Chess Nerd

Brennan asks her husband if she is wrong to think that she should get the award, and not Cam. Booth tells her that Cam receiving the award doesn’t make Brennan any less of a success, but Brennan is disappointed with his response.

Sweets joins the couple at the diner, and is excited to let them know that Magnuson had enemies at the Mayfair Chess Club. Booth asks Sweets to check out the club, and Sweets wants to be lead on the case. Booth tells him he is, in fact, “the chess nerd on the case.”
Sweets arrives at the chess club, and sees Levitt, who is with her son, Tim.  Levitt actually met Magnuson through her son, and the chess champion was her son’s mentor.

Sweets is hailed as a returning hero by the chess club members. Ten years ago, Sweets was actually one of the youngest chess masters in the federation. Sweets and Levitt’s son play a game, and Sweets looks right at home. While they are playing, Mr. Wakefield, who used to be Tim’s teacher, stops by and tells him that he hopes Magnuson didn’t misinterpret their last conversation. Wakefield also tells Sweets that he and Tim were at a deli at the time of the murder.

Scene of the Crime

Booth and Sweets trace Magnuson’s last steps and discover that the lights in the parking garage are broken. They find blood at the victim’s parking spot, but his car is gone. When they examine the crime scene, they find blood on the wall, as if Magnuson’s head was smashed against it. When Wakefield arrives to bemoan the fact that some of the members had to park in the street, Booth is clearly not a fan.

Angela has no luck with the security camera footage, but is able to discover that it was fried at 2:30 am on the night Magnuson died. Cam tells Angela that she told the magazine that she will only accept the award if Brennan and Angela are recipients also. Angela is moved by Cam’s gesture.

Who’s That Girl?

Back at the chess club, Sweets plays with his old friend, Dimitri. Tim is impressed with Sweets’ technique, and so is An Ni. Unfortunately, Sweets greets her as “Annie,” and she is wastes no time in correcting him. Sweets also notices a picture of An with other members of the chess club, and notes that Magnuson has a cast on. She explains that Tiffin Olin broke Magnuson’s hand with a clock timer. Olin was kicked out of the club after his tantrum. Sweets discovers that Olin plays in the park, and Booth heads over to question him. We learn that Olin was propositioning a lady of the night, who was really a cop, at the time of the Magnuson’s murder.

Trial by Fire

Angela locates the victim’s ex-wife who is working in Virginia as a nanny for a church family under her maiden name. She shows Booth some pictures of her ex with Suzanne Levitt, and she deems the steamy photos “unnatural.” Ingrid believes that she was justified in setting Magnuson’s apartment on fire because it needed to be cleansed. She also claims that she has an alibi, and was home alone at the house where she works.

Scenes from a Chess Board

Wakefield cuts in front of a line of chess club members waiting to play against Sweets. Sweets wins, and Wakefield storms away. Sweets is like a rock star in that chess club! He even beats An Ni, and then takes on Tim. Tim seems to know all of Sweets’ moves because he studied Sweets, and his game play, on the data base for the federation. Tim looks really creepy during the game.

Cause of Death

Dr. Filmore and Brennan finally figure out how the victim died, and the answer is in the feet. The murderer poured rock salt and water on the floor of the garage and tied in to a circuit to electrocute Magnuson when he got into his car. The trauma resulted in the fractures in the victim’s body, and blew off the victim’s toes and hurled him against the wall.

Brennan thinks that Suzanne Levitt is the killer. Sweets tells Tim that he is playing above his rating, and states that Magnuson wasn’t his mentor. Tim wins, and when he stands to shake Sweet’s hand, Sweet slaps the cuffs on him. Sweets thinks that Tim is a sociopath, and that he is protecting his mother because he refused to sacrifice his queen. Booth reluctantly lets Sweets talk to the young suspect.

Confession is Good for the Soul

Angela re-examines the surveillance camera’s hard drive, and discovers that Magnuson was actually murdered two hours earlier. The camera was put on a timer to cause another power surge while Tim was at the deli, thus giving an inaccurate time of death. There isn’t enough evidence to charge him, so it is up to Sweets to get a confession.

Sweets and Tim continue to spar in an interrogation that it is, in itself, a game of chess.  Sweets and Brennan tell Tim that his mother confessed to the murder. Booth brings Tim’s mother by in cuffs, and Tim confesses that he couldn’t let another man take his mother away.

Cam and Angela come in and, as Brennan begins to apologize, tell her that the three of them are being honored. They explain that the magazine is doing a calendar this year, and all the honorees must pose in revealing bikinis that have pictures of legendary female scientists on them. Brennan is impressed by the other scientists who have already agreed, and she is in!

At home, Brennan tries again to teach Booth chess. When he gets frustrated, he suggests playing one of their daughter’s games, only with the added incentive of alcohol.

I loved this episode of Bones, especially seeing Sweets in his element.

Bones airs Fridays at 8 pm on FOX

(Image courtesy of FOX)

Kim Stempel

Contributing Writer, BuddyTV

Kim has been covering television entertainment since 2013. She is addicted to Real Housewives, Pump Rules, Dancing with the Stars, and many more shows.