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Castle – “A Deadly Affair” – review
Oh, I am so happy to have my favorite odd couple of fictional detectives back! The one good thing about Mondays is that I get my Fillion Fix. There was a definite jump in my affection for this show during last season: unlike last summer, this summer I actually missed them enough to watch some of the re-runs that were airing on Wednesday nights.
So the first fifteen or twenty minutes of this episode were sheer hilarity, despite the fact that two bodies appear during that span. One thing I think Castle does really well as a series is balance the levity of the Beckett-Castle relationship with the seriousness of murder investigations. The humor this time around was based around the fact that Castle hadn’t called Beckett to explain when he was coming back to investigate with her again, or even if he was coming back again, and Beckett being mad at him for it. Oh, and Ryan “Honeymilk” and Esposito being mad at him for it, too. They were too cute this episode! Taking up for Beckett like the gay best friends they are, and getting all mad at Castle for not calling. Though considering Esposito referred to him as “my other partner” to his old partner last spring, they probably also feel rejected, hence Beckett’s acerbic “if you’re done pining over your girlfriend…” line.
The funny thing is, Nathan Fillion always makes me feel his point of view even when I am totally on board with Beckett’s feelings with respect to Castle. He didn’t call, he ran off to the Hamptons with his second ex wife when she was just about ready to go with him herself, and it’s kind of on him to come back since he was the one who took the summer off. And she’s tired of having her emotions toyed with, so she gives him the passionate “go home” speech (which I loved in part because it was so “I’m still Beckett from the block” vs. his summering in the Hamptons lifestyle, which I thought last spring was why Demming was so good for her). But Castle was just like “what did I DO?” and he was so confused and hurt that I felt sorry for him. So good on Nathan for making me react that way despite myself.
Good on Stana Katic, too, for showing all of Beckett’s emotions in the subtle Beckett way. Anger, hurt, disbelief, jealousy, denial of all of the above, self-satisfied pleasure in the results. I really can’t figure out if she’s grown into the role or if the character has simply grown on me, but I can honestly say that I enjoy her just as much as him these days.
The parallels between Alexis’s love crises and Castle’s always feel both forced and hilarious to me. Wisdom from the mouth of babes, and all that—but Alexis did say it best. “You’re not very good at this are you?” “Apparently not.” Apparently? Dude, it’s a straight up fact.
Anyway, the case this week seemed much more of a frame for some crazy pre-season teasers with Castle getting arrested and then shooting at Beckett. In action it was really just a great frame for Beckett to work out some of her anger at Castle by interrogating him like an actual criminal and then for the two of them to make a bet on who can connect the three unconnected murders first. Best moment in that scene: “What if they figure it out first?” Then together, “Nah.” Ha!
That of course led up to Esposito’s question at the end—“So how long before Castle did you know this was about counterfeiting?” and Beckett’s little smile…oh, she so threw that bet! But of course she wanted him back around, once he finally showed he was sorry for not calling. Also that implication was funny because as insightful as Castle is, I enjoy the episodes when Beckett shows what her training and experience and perhaps simple detective instincts can do instead.
The mystery itself honestly was so secondary to the personal drama that I really have no thoughts on it. Although the secret Burlesque club was pretty awesome. Oh, and it showed that Beckett’s still got it. “You think this is crazy, you should see some of the clubs I’ve been to”—cause girl used to work vice. Reminds me of the time they visited the sex shop and Castle acted like he’d never been in one before (maybe he hadn’t?) and Beckett was all blasé, yeah, I used to wear this all the time when I pretended to be a hooker. Lol.
Anyway. I thought it was a really good welcome back episode that dealt with the summer break between them, got their partnership back on track, and left it open for Castle to break it off with his ex now that he knows Beckett’s back on the market (he looked entirely too interested in the fact that she and Demming broke up for that not to be on the horizon).