A decade of “Bones”

There’s plenty of life left in those old “Bones.”

FOX’s workhorse, last seen Dec. 11 when it was celebrating its 200th episode, returns Thursday, March 26 with the first of 12 new episodes.

“We are currently shooting the episode that makes us the longest-running drama in FOX history,” executive producer Stephen Nathan says. “It is our 206th — the number of bones in the human body and the number that puts us over the edge for FOX.”

Bones_Emily_DeschanelA decade is a long time for a TV series, and to succeed the characters had to stay fresh. Emily Deschanel, who plays Dr. Temperance “Bones” Brennan, recently watched clips with her husband, David Hornsby, who commented, “Oh, my God! I hadn’t realized how much your character changed.”

Bones and her colleague, now husband, Special Agent Seeley Booth (David Boreanaz), have both evolved during the show’s run.

“Brennan has opened up so much as a person and broken down the walls that she needed as a teenager to fend for herself in foster care,” Deschanel says.

Nathan prides the series on exploring genres and bringing in guest stars. In the premiere episode, Cyndi Lauper returns as Avalon Harmonia, a medium.

“Her appearance coincides with the investigation of a psychic who is murdered, so Cyndi comes back for that thinking that is what she is supposed to be there for and finds out it is more than what she came for,” Nathan says.

An 11th season is not guaranteed, though FOX’s top executives, Nathan and Deschanel all say they want it to continue. As of presstime the stars were in contract negotiations.

“It doesn’t feel like we are at the end though,” Deschanel says. “We will do what we have to do. The show may end at the end of the 10th and I am sure there will be many tears whenever it does end. It feels to me there are still many stories to tell.”

When it is time, the writers have a finale in mind.

“It might very well change with an 11th season,” Nathan says. “Every season has taken us in a direction we did not necessarily expect in the beginning of the season. We can always end the show, but it’s always our intention to keep it going.”