Good storytelling is making you care about the outcome and the characters when you already know the outcome. And that’s what we got on last night’s Castle. Because, let’s face it, we knew Castle wasn’t going to die. The show is called Castle after all. And yet, when the show called for it, I truly felt for all the characters involved.
We pick up exactly where we left off last week with one exception – Castle actually has less than 24 hours to live. The 24 hours must have been from exposure? Or they needed to increase tension. Either way, a doctor comes to see Castle. He can give Castle shots every few hours, but that will only extend Castle’s life for a couple of hours. His only hope is finding the antidote – there isn’t enough time to make any more.
So Castle is allowed to help with the case, but only from the bunker. They start working on Valkyrie and Dreamworld. They find a reporter who was going to publish a story about Dreamworld until it was quashed by Agent Pierce – I mean the Secretary of Defense himself. (This guest star was a recurring character on 24 playing secret service agent Pierce.) The secretary finally admits to its existence. It’s in
Afghanistan and key in the war on
Turns out our murder victim from last week was stationed there and he was involved in a mission that took out Al Qaeda’s #2. Could that be the motive? Sure looks like it when they find out the victim was being followed by one of this guy’s cousins in the days before the robbery. So they bring in this cousin, but they quickly clear him. After all, he was arrested only 20 minutes into the episode. We do learn that the murder victim was seen removing the body of one of the servants from the house after the attack that killed the #2.
Meanwhile, they manage to get the classified report on this mission only to find out it is so far redacted that it is pretty much useless. However, Castle suggests searching for blacked out words that would be the correct spacing as Valkyrie giving the font used, and they find matches in the report. The tech manages to pull up the recording of the mission tapes using some backdoors he knows about. That’s when they figure out that Valkyrie is a person, someone who is deep under cover as a servant but feeing information to our government. She was supposed to get out before the strike, however, she didn’t and was killed. The victim from last week was pleading with them to hold off, but the Secretary of Defense ordered the strike anyway.
While Beckett and her new partner have been tracking this information down, Castle has talked to his mom and daughter and said goodbye without saying goodbye. It worries him, so Martha calls Beckett, who dodges her call. She then goes to Ryan and Esposito, who get stonewalled when they call Beckett.
While investigating Valkyrie since she seems to be the reason for what is happening now, they discover her fiancée – the reporter who was going to do the story on Dreamworld. They immediately head to his place. Castle insists he ride along so if they find the antidote, he’s there to get it since his time is almost up.
Naturally, he’s not there, but they do find some stuff that proves he is guilty (Really? Wasn’t that sloppy writing? Just last week, easy evidence made Beckett think the murder victim wasn’t guilty.) And he has a press pass to a speech that the Secretary is giving that afternoon.
The team is rolling to the speech, but Beckett and Castle are talking in their car. They begin to wonder if the reporter would go after the Secretary or his wife. Inflict the same pain he feels. So Beckett leaves the caravan and goes to the Secretary’s house. When they get there, Castle collapses. Beckett had better be right.
Of course, we already know she is because we’ve seen the reporter show up to do an interview with the Secretary’s wife. Beckett arrives to find she collapsed and the reporter just fleeing. She chases him, but he gets the jump on her and grabs her gun. While Beckett is pleading for Castle’s life, someone pulls a gun on the reporter. Beckett’s new partner has followed and saves the day.
Fade to black only to come back in Castle’s hospital room. He’s going to be okay, and Beckett and his family are there waiting for him to wake up. He and Beckett talk, and he assures her still that they will make their long distance relationship work.
Then Beckett goes outside and talks to her new partner. Beckett is upset to learn that nothing is going to happen to the Secretary for his part in the raid that killed Valkyrie. It is pointed out to her that in
Washington, things are
much more gray than she likes.
And as her partner is leaving, Beckett thanks her again for having her back even on the wild hunch that turned out to be correct. Her partner says, “That’s what partners do.” But by the look on Beckett’s face, you can tell she is wondering who her partner is or should be.
End of episode.
As I said at the beginning, I knew Castle would leave. And yet his phone calls with his family and his scenes with Beckett were tender and touching. They wouldn’t have been as important in season 1, but in season 6 with the history we have behind the characters, I liked them.
Obviously, Beckett hasn’t left DC yet, but you can tell she is thinking about whose back she has and I think that is going to be part of what moves her back to DC.
And next week looks interesting. I’m very curious to see what a child actor’s death is going to have to do with national security. I think being back in
York will be another bit in the link that takes Beckett home to New York. I’m not quite sure how many episodes this arc
will supposed to last, but I am looking forward to being back in the 12th full
time. This is good for a little variety,
but I miss seeing more of the regular crew.
Heck, we still haven’t seen Laney or Gates this season.
Thoughts on the episode? Let me know in the comments.
And check back tomorrow at little after 10 when I'll have my review of the new Nikki Heat book by Richard Castle up.