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Ranking Bones' Forensic Investigators From Worst To Best

The Jeffersonian Institute seems like it would be a pretty unusual place to work. First, there's the queen bee, Dr. Temperance Brennan (also known as Bones), who is a genius at forensics but somewhat lacking in the social skills department. Then, there's the fact that Dr. Brennan (Emily Deschanel) and Booth (David Boreanaz), the department's FBI liaison, seem to have a weird flirtation going on that would probably be distracting if you were trying to get work done. Then there's the fact that the shelf life for interns at The Jeffersonian is pretty short — you might even be at risk of being murdered or going to jail if you work there.

Despite all of these complications, the characters on the Fox series "Bones" are rarely boring, and at least all of the drama at the Jeffersonian gives fans something to talk about. Because there have been so many different staff members in the forensics department, we thought it would be interesting to evaluate each investigator and see how they stack up. And because this is a very scientific ranking, we've opted to not include non-forensic characters like Booth and James Aubrey, instead just focusing on the characters who work in and around the lab. 

We've also decided to only include characters who appeared in more than three episodes of the show, which means the incomparable Betty White (who played Dr. Beth Mayer in two episodes) is also not on this list. Now that we've gotten all that out of the way, we can get on with the ranking. Here are all of the "Bones" forensic investigators, ranked from worst to best.

Oliver Wells

Oliver Wells (Brian Klugman) is a character on "Bones" that no one at the Jeffersonian really liked, and we have to agree with them. Apart from Hodgins, who he actually gets along with quite well, no one at the lab likes him — and he doesn't care one way or the other. While Dr. Brennan certainly has some issues with her social skills and strives to improve her relationships with others as the series goes on, Oliver does not have the same ambition.

He's smart and good at his job — we'll give him that — but the lab with him in it isn't a particularly enjoyable place to be. Sometimes unlikeable characters can be interesting because they challenge and create conflicts with other characters on a show, but there really wasn't anything fun about Oliver when he was in the lab. The way he constantly challenged Bones was just plain rude, and he never really displayed any redeeming qualities. According to a Reddit poll, Oliver is one of the least liked characters on the show, so it's only right he be ranked in this position.

Jessica Warren

Jessica Warren (Laura Spencer) is not as outwardly unlikeable as Wells, but there's not a whole lot we love about her, either. Part of the reason Jessica isn't a particularly beloved character is because she was the last intern to be introduced at the Jeffersonian (she arrived in Season 9), and thus didn't really have a chance to mesh with the team in the way the other interns did. Jessica doesn't really seem to fit in at the lab to begin with. Having grown up in a hippie co-op, Jessica doesn't really like following rules, which (understandably) upsets Cam and Dr. Brennan.

She later goes on to have a romantic relationship with James Aubrey, Booth's FBI partner, but we don't really feel the love here, either. There was just nothing about Jessica that really made us care for her, something that was especially noticeable given that we'd already had nine seasons to discover our favorite characters. Unfortunately, Jessica was not one of them.

Rodolfo Fuentes

Rodolfo Fuentes (Ignacio Serricchio) is one of the most experienced interns the Jeffersonian has seen. He was a doctor of forensic anthropology back in Cuba, but had to start his career again when he came to America. While Rodolfo's experience is certainly a great benefit to the team, his behavior is not as welcome. Rodolfo is a huge flirt, and we don't love the way he hits on every woman he comes into contact with. First of all, it's unprofessional, second of all, it creates some tension among the staff.

Rodolfo does have a redeeming moment when he tries to smuggle medicine back to Cuba — letting viewers see that he does have a heart underneath all the bravado — but we don't see enough of him to really love him as a character. Like Jessica, the fact that he only enters the show in Season 9 means that fans didn't have as much of a chance to get to know him like they did some of the earlier staff at the Jeffersonian.

Colin Fisher

We actually like Colin Fisher (Joel David Moore), and the only reason he's not higher up on this list is that there are other characters we like just a bit more. The best thing about Fisher is his dark sense of humor, which actually made sense considering the interns were always surrounded by death. While he could occasionally be a bit rude, we appreciate the fact that he was a straightforward person and also not as combative as the similarly sarcastic Wells.

For the most part, Fisher's morose, bleak sense of humor was a welcome addition to the lab, especially since many of the other interns often took their work incredibly seriously. Fisher was also dedicated to his work, but his morbid perspective is a different flavor of nerd than that of his colleagues, one that we quite enjoy.

Finn Abernathy

Finn Abernathy (Luke Kleintank) was first introduced in Season 7 of "Bones," and he was initially a very mysterious, almost-dangerous seeming character. After his stepfather disappeared under suspicious circumstances, the team initially suspected that he had killed him. Eventually, though, the team came to like and respect Finn, and his unique perspective on life was an important addition to the lab.

Though it initially seemed like Finn was going to be something of a southern stereotype — especially with how often Hodgins teases him about his accent — he became a really interesting and well-drawn character that revealed a lot of hidden depth. Though Finn had a troubled youth and spent some time in juvenile detention, he's a very kind, honest person who just wants to do his job well. The youngest team member at the Jeffersonian, it's also nice to see his colleagues try and support him and teach him the ways of adulthood.

Daisy Wick

While Daisy Wick (Carla Gallo) initially came off as a rather annoying character, we actually grow to like her as the series goes on. Like Zack, Daisy idolizes Dr. Brennan, and is clearly trying to do everything she can to be like her. This try-hard attitude is somewhat grating at first, but Daisy's evolution on the show is compelling to watch.

The first moment that causes us to like Daisy more is her relationship with Dr. Sweets. Their relationship allowed her to become her own person, rather than simply someone trying to (re)make herself in Dr. Brennan's image. Similarly, when Sweets died and Daisy was left with his child, we see more of Daisy's true strength and how she's able to evolve as a person. It's at this point that she no longer acts like a teacher's pet and becomes more of a capable scientist on her own terms.

Vincent Nigel-Murray

Vincent Nigel-Murray (Ryan Cartwright) is one of the more likable characters on "Bones," and his nerdy quirks only endear us to him more. One of these quirks was the fact that Vincent was constantly spewing random pieces of trivia throughout the day. We later learn he uses these pieces of trivia to focus his mind on the case.

Being that he was such an entertaining, and generally good-natured character, it was quite a shock when Vincent died at the end of Season 6 after being shot by a sniper. His death was also very upsetting for Bones, who found it hard to fathom that he was taken away so suddenly and so unjustly. If anything good came from Vincent's death, it was at least the moment that finally pushed Booth and Bones to confess their feelings for one another after years of dancing around the issue.

Clark Edison

One of the best things about Dr. Clark Edison (Eugene Byrd) is his relationship with Bones. The first intern to join the team after Zack left, Clark had big shoes to fill. But, unlike Zack, Clark did not idolize Dr. Brennan nor did he ever suck up to her. Instead, they had something of a rivalry going on in the lab, which was actually quite fun to watch.

Clark was also an important character because he pointed out just how strange the lab at the Jeffersonian was. Clark hated behavior he deemed as unprofessional and had a particular disdain for his colleagues speaking about their personal lives while at work. Of course, Clark couldn't keep up this distance forever, and eventually became drawn into the Jeffersonian drama after a while, even opening up about his own life sometimes. This push and pull between Clark's rigidity and the chaos of the lab is fun to watch, and Clark's addition to the team was an important moment for the Jeffersonian.

Zack Addy

Zack Addy (Eric Millegan) was a beloved character on "Bones," which makes his downfall all the more upsetting. Zack was Dr. Brennan's first intern on the show, and for that, he will always be special. In fact, it was never really the same after Zack left the lab, especially since it took a full 11 interns to replace him. Like Daisy, Zack idolized Dr. Brennan, and, like his hero, lacked well-rounded social skills. But, for the most part, his awkwardness was endearing, and he was an easy-to-like character.

Unfortunately, his naïveté about the ways of the world made him the perfect target for a serial killer named Gorgmon, who manipulated Zack into doing his bidding. In one of the more shocking storylines in the series, Zack killed a lobbyist and hid his bones within the Jeffersonian, something that later resulted in him getting locked up in an asylum. This was a fairly divisive storyline, as Zack's fans had a hard time believing he would do something like this, but it certainly made for compelling television.

Jack Hodgins

Jack Hodgins (T.J. Thyne) is an entomologist, botanist, and mineralogist at the Jeffersonian. Known by Booth as "Bug Boy," Hodgins is an eccentric scientist with a sarcastic sense of humor. Though somewhat strange by "normal" standards, Hodgins is nonetheless one of the more sociable members of the Jeffersonian team. He loves any excuse to do experiments in the service of solving a case, and will take any opportunity he can to make a joke. Good friends with Zack and the eventual husband of Angela, Hodgins is an integral member of the team and a fan-favorite.

Having someone in the lab with a sense of humor and an idea of how to behave like a well-adjusted human being out in the world is important, and seeing Hodgins act as a mentor and friend to Zack is especially heartwarming. Though Hodgins can be paranoid and misanthropic at times, his passion for his work and his humor are essential elements of the show.

Temperance "Bones" Brennan

Though Bones (Emily Deschanel) is the lead character of the show, that doesn't mean she's always the most likeable. That being said, the show wouldn't exist without her, and she experiences some pretty incredible growth over the course of the 12 seasons, so we've got to give her a respectable spot on this list. Even if Dr. Brennan isn't your favorite character on the show, you've got to admit that she has some terrific moments. Though she's not often purposefully funny, her stilted social interactions with other people frequently lead to some hilarious encounters that really make the show what it is.

And, although she's not always a perfect boss, she does try to do right by her interns (and most importantly, her work), and she does become better at communicating with others as the series goes on. Her relationship with Booth is particularly compelling, especially because they are both so different and it takes years for them to finally respect, understand, and even compromise with one another. Though Bones is always Bones, her growth on the show is heartening to see, and we've got to give her credit for always staying true to herself.

Camille "Cam" Saroyan

Previously a police officer and then the youngest coroner in New York City, Cam (aka Camille Saroyan) joined "Bones" in Season 2 and became the head of the Forensic Division at the Jeffersonian. Initially, she butts heads with Brennan and the rest of the team, at one point considering removing Dr. Brennan until Booth and Angela tell her the whole team will leave if Brennan is fired.

After these initial conflicts, Cam learns to better understand and respect the team and is an excellent boss. Though she can be a hard woman to please, she will defend her team no matter what, as long as she thinks what they're doing is right. Cam is a loyal friend and family member, and we see this reflected in the relationship she has with her ex-fiancee's daughter, whom she adopts, as well as in her relationship with Arastoo and Booth. Though she can be a tough cookie to crack at times, she's definitely someone you want in your corner.

Arastoo Vaziri

Arastoo Vaziri (Pej Vahdat) is probably the kindest, most good-natured character on "Bones," which is why he's so high up on this list. Originally from Iran, Arastoo initially faked an accent when he started working at the Jeffersonian because he thought his colleagues would have an easier time understanding the fact that he is both a muslim and a scientist if they believed him to be a recent immigrant. While this secret initially created some tension between him and his colleagues, they all come to understand him better when Arastoo reveals his motivation for doing so.

He is probably the most empathetic out of all the squints, and we often find him imagining what the victims might have gone through prior to their deaths. He's also very sensitive and creative, and when he first starts dating Cam, he writes poetry to her in Farsi in order to share his feelings. There's really nothing to dislike about Arastoo, and we love his sense of romance and his big heart.

Angela Montenegro

One of the original "Bones" characters, Angela Montenegro (Michaela Conlin) is a unique figure within the Jeffersonian. Originally an artist, Angela uses her "Angelatron" machine as well as her artistic skill to reconstruct the faces of the victims that come into the lab. Like Arastoo, Angela is one of the more emotional, empathetic members of the team, and she feels deeply connected to the faces she looks at all day and is very committed to discovering who they were.

Angela is also one of the most cheerful and humorous employees in the forensics division, and her presence in the often dour lab is a welcome relief. She's also an incredibly important figure for Bones — being her best friend — and teaches Bones a lot about understanding her own feelings and tapping in to her sense of humanity. The Jeffersonian wouldn't be the same without Angela's passion, creativity, and wit, which is why she deserves a spot near the top of this list.

Wendell Bray

Though the original "Bones" characters are some of the most beloved on the series, there are a few interns who've made a big impact. According to many fans on Reddit, Wendell Bray (Michael Grant Terry) is considered the best intern the Jeffersonian ever had. There are a number of reasons for this. First, though he's initially standoffish, we come to learn that Wendell is actually a really sweet, sincere guy who has a lot of hidden depth. He's often considered the squint who is the most "normal" because he has a social life outside of work.

Wendell also has the most interesting relationships with the other characters on the show. He briefly dates Angela, and while it doesn't work out in the end, their relationship is very sweet. He also becomes close to Booth, and Booth even comes to see him as something of a younger brother. The storyline where Wendell gets cancer is one of the most affecting in the whole series, and the reason fans react to this story so strongly is because Wendell is such a compelling and endearing character. Wendell represents the very best elements of the show — the push and pull between scientific fact and lived experience, and the idea that there is always more than meets the eye — which is why he secures the top spot on this list.