Comic-Con 2012: 5 Things to Expect From Next Season of 'Bones' (Video)

Emily Deschanel, David Boreanaz and showrunner Stephen Nathan talk about time jumps and long-term ramifications of the recent cliffhanger and offer up a little unseen footage.
Getty Images

The Bones panel was a relatively quiet one during Friday's Comic-Con programming. With creator Hart Hanson calling in sick, series stars Emily Deschanel (Dr. Temperance Brennan) and David Boreanaz (Special Agent Seeley Booth) were joined by showrunner Stephen Nathan to talk about the unique circumstances of the series' chopped up seventh season.

Babies (on screen and off), abbreviated episode orders and avoiding the "Moonlighting curse" steered much of the conversation, before the trio moved on to the upcoming eighth run -- which goes into production shortly.

VIDEO: Inside THR's Comic-Con 2012 Video Lounge Featuring the Festival's Biggest Names

So what's in store for the senior procedural, now that Brennan is wanted for a crime she didn't commit and on the lamb with her and Booth's infant daughter? Here are a few key points they brought up on stage.

There will be another time jump. "She'll have been gone for about three months," Nathan said of the series' latest move. The previous two seasons have both kicked off with significant skips in time, namely for Booth's tenure in Afghanistan and Brennan's fast-tracked pregnancy. "Everybody has been trying to find a way to get her back to clear her and they've been thwarted at every move."

Booth is not pleased. Naturally, Brennan's baby dad does not take her fleeing D.C. with their daughter very well. "It’ll be difficult for him,” said Boreanaz. “He is now being thrust into a position where he’s going to have to deal with the bureau asking him questions." "He's angry enough that he's no longer going to be a good boy," added Nathan.

Things won't be resolved quickly. Though Deschanel will obviously return with the series, Brennan's unfortunate circumstances probably won't be fixed right away. And Booth and Brennan's relationship will need work over the course of the season. "I think this season is when we see whether they can survive what we put up against them," said Nathan. "Is love enough?"

PHOTOS: Portraits From THR's Comic-Con Roundtable

Pelant is a new kind of villain for the series. Hacker-turned-serial-killer Christopher Pelant (Andrew Leeds) is sticking around. They haven't seemed to settle on how many episodes he'll appear in, but his presence will be felt. "He will be a cloud that stays over their head and everyone at the Jeffersonian," said Nathan. "It's going to be much darker this season."

Boreanaz will direct again -- and Deschanel might. "When I'm done, I always say I don't want to come back and direct," said Boreanaz. "But then I do." The actor said he'd likely helm another episode this season, before Deschanel hinted that she might be up to it as well. "I was all set to direct and then I got pregnant," she said, noting that pulling double-duty on set during her first trimester was just too unappealing.

As for new footage, what Fox did choose to spill during the panel seems to all be from the four standalone episodes filmed after season seven and planned for the fall run. Watch the reel below: