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Why The Security On Bones Bothers Longtime Fans

Fox's Bones ran for a whopping 12 seasons from 2005 until 2017, and in that time, the writers and production team probably had a load of homework to do, since the premise revolves around both the crime-fighting of the FBI and the scientific study of the fictional Jeffersonian Institute. Fans in law enforcement would be scrutinizing the procedural aspects of the show, while those in the scientific community would scoff at scientific inaccuracies. And though Bones does a decent job keeping a lot of aspects accurate, falls short with others — it happens.

Twelve seasons is a lot of time for a show to rack up various errors, and Bones has quite a few on its record. For example, Dr. Temperance Brennan (AKA Bones), played by Emily Deschanel, frequently identifies a victim's race by certain features on the skull; a professor of anthropology told BuzzFeed that race is "the hardest thing to determine," and isn't as simple as Bones makes it seem. Additionally, the show has occasionally mispronounced a pre-human species names and simplified complex procedures. 

However, even more than all of that, there's one facet of Bones that bothers longtime fans to an incredible degree: the card-swipe security system in the Jeffersonian Institute. 

A useless bit of engineering, according to Bones fans

Upon the platform of the Jeffersonian is where all the cool stuff happens. It's where the cast gathers around the "slab" to kick off each mystery. The platform is separated from the main floor by four or five steps. There's no gate and no doors — nothing but a single card reader where employees swipe their IDs before entering. The whole system has been bothering fans since season 1.

"Rewatching bones and every time they swipe to go up in the platform in the Jeffersonian I wonder what is the point. There is literally nothing blocking the way!" u/CodEnvironmental405 posted in the Bones subreddit. "Is it a laser or something?"

Plenty of fans chimed in, concluding that it must be a laser, but they aren't sure for what purpose. "There must be [a laser], because an alarm sounds when someone goes up without swiping," commented u/jsat3474. "But it's not very secure because one person swipes and all 4 of them go up."

One of the users questions how a laser could possibly know if an employee is going up or down the platform stairs. Redditor u/trullaDE reasoned, "There are probably two laser beams (they don't even need to be far apart), and depending on which one breaks contact first, you know if someone goes up or down." Still, this doesn't explain why there's a card reader in the first place.

Several Bones fans in the subreddit decided the device is used to keep a log of employees working with the evidence in case something goes wrong — but that doesn't settle minds either, since one person can swipe for a multi-person entry. "It drives me nuts every time because it seems so pointless and ineffective!" said u/CodEnvironmental405, summing the whole thing up perfectly.