While not wholly unexpected, Fox’s entertainment chairman Kevin Reilly announced that the network’s hit show Bones has officially been renewed for its 9th season. “After more than 150 episodes, Bones continues to be one of television’s most dynamic and consistent dramas,” Reilly commented. Beyond season 9 all he would say was, “We at Fox, along with millions of zealous fans, look forward to seeing where the incredible creative team takes the series next season.”

The renewal was made possible back in the spring of 2012 when the network optioned the show for two years instead of just one and was further predicted by executive producer Hart Hanson back in the Fall. It was also around that time that rumors began to circulate about the show’s lead actors, Emily Deschanel and David Boreanaz working out contract negotiations for the extra season, should Fox choose to finalize the pick up. No doubt this makes it easier on Hanson and his writing staff, as they can now plot the show’s course with a larger scope in mind. Hanson has mentioned several times in the past that he knows precisely how he’d like the show to end; it’s just a matter of planning out how they will get to that point.

In the rapidly shifting television landscape, what the writers and actors of Bones are accomplishing is something to be proud of. They’ve survived renewal season going back to the days when Fox had a strong lineup of scripted dramas and weathered the writer’s strike. They’ve gone from being a show no one knew was on, to worldwide appeal and syndication. No one could have predicted back in the Fall of 2005 that they would one day be the strong, veteran show for the network to rely on year in and year out.

So savor the moment, Bones fans! And don’t forget to tune into the 2-hour winter premiere on Monday, January 14th at 8/7c.

Bones airs Monday nights at 8/7c on Fox.