bones party in the pants booth marianne brennan joanna cassidy fox 'Bones' recap: It's not just strippers who have mommy issues in 'The Party in the Pants'

While the case of the week in “The Party in the Pants” deals with a murdered stripper/stockbroker, the real story of this “Bones” episode is the return of Booth’s long-lost mother, Marianne (Joanna Cassidy). She abandoned Booth’s abusive father — and Booth (David Boreanaz) — 24 years before and comes back this week to make amends.

Murder is easier to solve.

The victim

Thanks to a very irresponsible contractor and her inept nephew, the body of Jack Spinler is found in a demolished building. His polyester, tear-away pants and thong immediately make it clear that Jack is a stripper. As it turns out, he is also a stockbroker.

As such, a lot of people may have wanted Jack dead.

The suspects

Seth: Jack’s stockbroker boss is a sleazy jerk who claims to be happy with the victim’s work. There’s also an illegal scheme to steal clients’ money. Unfortunately, Seth has an alibi and is only guilty of financial crimes.

The girlfriend: Jack was dating a rich girl with daddy issues. Although the stockbroker scheme lost a bunch of her money and although Jack was cheating on her, she’s innocent of everything but psychological messiness.

Jason White, the jealous fiance: One of Jack’s stripper conquests was a bride-to-be named Celia. Her fiance, Jason, was arrested for battery after she cheated — but Jack was gone before Jason arrived to get mad.

Storm: Jack’s stripper friend is initially a suspect because of some stolen gigs. But that’s far less important than the fact that Jack invested all of Storm’s savings in the illegal investments. All of the money was lost and Storm tried to retaliate by beating Jack. He overdid it.

Storm isn’t exactly sorry about killing Jack.

Mommy issues, so many mommy issues

After a 24-year absence from his life, Booth’s mom shows up in his office. He is initially happy about this, probably because Booth blames his father for everything bad that has ever happened. Abandonment doesn’t seem so bad next to cruelty and abuse after all.

Marianne comes to stay with Booth and Brennan. There is dancing and singing about monkeys and blunt questioning from Brennan. Even though the tension is very obviously there, Booth manages to keep a smile until Marianne takes him to a park for some big news: She’s marrying a piano player named Reggie and wants Booth to give her away.

This would be stressful enough for Booth without another bombshell: Reggie has two kids, and Marianne has spent years mothering them. Understandably, Booth is a little bit furious that his mother has been raising these kids while completely ignoring her own. A brief, tense fight ends with Marianne heading for a hotel.

It’s not over yet. Marianne comes to Booth’s office again and tries to explain herself. Not surprising for a woman who was once blamed for her own abuse, Marianne quickly shifts the blame for all of this onto her son. Her “apology” pretty much consists of insisting that she has the right to be happy and that she only stayed away because she knew Booth would never forgive her.

Booth doesn’t exactly help the situation by just staring at his mom, but can you blame him? The woman who abandoned him has essentially said she may have left because of an abusive dad, but she stayed gone because of a resentful son.

Ouch. Seriously, ouch.

But Booth, being the good guy that he is, pretty much takes the blame and feels terrible about the whole thing. Some counseling from Brennan and the site of his childhood toy in Christine’s arms make Booth relent. He and Brennan go to Marianne’s wedding, where Booth gives away the bride and Brennan catches the bouquet.


Fun fact: The actor who plays Reggie the piano player also played the end-of-the-world cult leader on a Season 4 episode of “Parks and Recreation.” It’s entirely possible that no one else finds this amusing.

The quotable “Bones”

“You are in big trouble! Get this thing off of me, Dale!” — Irresponsible Aunt Alice

“You are a grandmother … Twice over!” — Booth

“I’m not gonna let you go this time.” — Booth

“Either rats ate the rest of his underwear, or I’d say our victim was a stripper.” — Cam

“How bad is your luck to have the same building on you twice?” — Cam

“When did empowerment become stuffing dollar bills down men’s pants?” — Cam
“The 1970s. I already said that. You should pay closer attention.” — Brennan

“I’ve got nothing. I just wanted to talk about your mom.” — Sweets

“If I had any non-crime related cash on me right now, I would be stuffing it down those pants.” — Angela

“We won, baby.” — Booth’s mom

“You can’t have too many noodles.” — Booth’s mom

“I imagine he didn’t start stripping as a kid!” — Wendell
“Not professionally …” — Brennan

“It’s been 24 years — feel guilty!” — Booth

“You were a stripper?” — Booth
“I was only once …” — Brennan

“Wow. These strippers really have elaborate back-stories!” — Party Girl

“Any evidence of disgruntled customers?” — Brennan
“Nope. All gruntled. All very, very gruntled.” — Angela

“The Jesus myth is all about forgiveness, isn’t it?” — Brennan
“It’s not a myth.” — Booth

“I have receipts. I can probably find the hooker I was screwing!” — Seth the stockbroker’s alibi

Posted by:Laurel Brown