Castle Recap: Cheeseburgers!
This week on ABC’s Castle, Rick met his No. 1 fan (with a bullet!), though under less-than-ideal circumstances. Beckett, in turn, gave the 12th an unofficial assist, prevented as she was from reclaiming her old job.
THE RECAP | A woman, Emma Riggs, flees the cops as they storm her apartment, then takes several people hostage inside a dentist’s office. (That would be a quaint storefront dentist’s office. In New York City. OK….) Turns out, Emma’s wanted for murdering the man whose body lay dead on her apartment floor. Emma tells the cops she’ll only talk to novelist/NYPD consultant Richard Castle, and after an amusing round of “Richard Castle Trivia,” she allows him to join her.
Emma claims she is innocent, that the victim was her boyfriend Angelo. Castle is inclined to believe her, based in part on some incongruity with the texts sent from her phone. But things look iffy when Beckett phones Castle with info from Emma’s sealed juvie record — that she committed an identical murder as a youth. As Castle hears Emma’s side of the story, a hostage makes a grab for the gun and, in the scuffle, Rick gets shot, though the bullet is stopped by his vest. (Still: My understanding of how vests work is that, at that short of range and with a shot to the sternum, he’d have the wind knocked out of him and then some.)
Eventually, it’s deduced that Angelo had broken into the orphanage where Emma was raised to secure her birthday gift — her adoption records — and that Emma’s father is real estate tycoon/aspiring governor Aaron Stokes. What’s more, Stokes’ lawyer had paid a records clerk to reveal the contents of Emma’s juvie file, But Aaron, after a gentle interrogation by Gates and Beckett, maintains that he had no role in the frame job. Instead, it was his shady lawyer/son-in-law, who feared Emma would try to lay claim to half the trust that otherwise would be going to his wife, Stokes’ other daughter.
In the wake of the big win and Stokes’ appreciation of the NYPD’s deft handling, Gates drops a hint that the excellent Kate Beckett can’t rejoin their ranks due to budget cuts made by Stokes’ “golfing buddy,” the police commish. One phone call later, Beckett flashes her badge and announces to the boys, “I’m baaaack!” As for the workplace dating thing, Gates’ “engagement gift” to Rick and Kate is her accommodation of it, provided they keep things professional. But since Kate’s not officially back on duty just yet, she gives her fiance a big kiss in the middle of the squad room, amid cheers.
THE REVIEW | As our friends in Canada foretold, this was a very enjoyable episode, coupling a solid case with a unique (for Castle) hostage scenario. And I’ll even go along with how Gates cued Stokes to use his leverage to get Beckett back on the force. Absurdly convenient, yes, but efficient, and it solves a “problem” for poor Kate (who hasn’t been without a job since age 15!) as well as the show. The cold open, in Rick’s bedroom, was fun and made a point but, gosh, was a bit heavy handed, to the point of being sitcommy. As Stana said, we’ll eventually see how that icky living sitch shakes out. And seeing Kate go in for the kiss surely pleased the crowd out there. Final note: I’d one day like an actual Misery riff, where Rick is abducted by an insane superfan. Season 7?