Tuesday, September 24, 2013

TV Recap: Castle 6-1 - Valkyrie

It really is frustrating when you are waiting all summer for a cliffhanger to be resolved, and then one of the main characters of the show is kidnapped by aliens before you can even get an answer to the question.  At least Bigfoot showed up to help track Beckett down.  However, the time traveling ninjas at the end of the episode were too much.

Oh, sorry.  I’m getting the fake spoilers I’ve been feeding to friends who watch the show but haven’t seen the premier yet with what really happened.  (And I’m already concocting a story for next week involving pirates and shark jumping.)

The reality of the season premier is not borrowed from one of Castle’s wild theories.  Instead it picks up just where the finale left off.  Castle’s just gotten down on one knee and asked Beckett to marry him.  Beckett, meanwhile, has decided to take the job working as a federal agent in DC….

Beckett doesn’t really know how to respond at first.  She wants to say yes, but she knows she is taking that job.  After a few confusing exclamations (poor Castle doesn’t know what she’s trying to say), Castle assures her that he is proposing not to keep her in New York but because he wants to marry her.  Reassured, she says yes.  They’ll work out the details of them living in two different cities later.

Then there’s a time jump of two months.  Beckett is still in training, and it isn’t going well.  Her instincts are not helping her, and she fails one of her training exercises.

Castle, meanwhile, has returned from his long, hard two week book tour on the west coast.  (Wish I’d known about it.  I would have caught him.)  He’s looking forward to a weekend visit with Beckett, especially since they haven’t seen each other in six weeks.  Alexis has returned from Costa Rica early and brought back a boyfriend – Pi (like the Greek letter, not the dessert).  Then he gets the call that Beckett has landed a case and can’t get away this weekend after all.  So he flies down to surprise her instead.

The next morning, she is working on the case before she leaves.  When she drops her folder, she accidentally leaves behind a picture of a blown transformer.  Even though he shouldn’t work on it, he calls up Esposito and Ryan to get as much information as he can.

Castle learns the same thing Beckett does that the transformer controls the power for a building that blew the day before.  Inside is a security contractor for the government, and sure enough, something was stolen that could compromise national security.  The big question is how they got out of the building before the back up generator came on.

Beckett figures out they used the drainage tunnels under the building, which leads to a nearby golf course.  She and her new partner show up there only to find that Castle has beaten them.  Beckett gives him a good talking to, and her partner turns a blind eye.  But thanks to the info Castle has gotten, they do manage to dig up someone who was sitting in his car in the golf course the day before the robbery.

Beckett and her new team are able to use video surveillance to find this guy, and he turns out to be former military.  They go to his apartment and find the gear he needed to pull off the robbery.

And about this time, he kidnaps Castle.  This man is driving away, demanding to know if “they” know about Valkyrie.  When Castle doesn’t answer, the guys announces he is going to dreamworld and falls asleep at the wheel.  Castle tries to stop them but winds up crashing the car.  And it turns out his abductor is dead.

This sends Castle to the agency’s interrogation room, where he repeats the conversation.  They release him, however, and he goes home so he doesn’t get Beckett into any more trouble.

Back at the loft, he encounters Pi cooking dinner – nice juicy steaks.  Papaya steaks that is.  He also learns that Pi is in a bit of a jam.  While he lives in Amsterdam, he’s lost his passport.  Pi gives Castle the idea to talk through his weekend with someone, so he heads down to the precinct.  Ryan and Esposito insist on finding out about the case, and when Castle mentions dreamworld, Esposito recognizes it.  It’s not a reference to going to sleep but to a top secret military base in the middle east.

Meanwhile, Beckett and her new partner track down the dead guy’s girlfriend, who knows nothing about the robbery.  She was on the run, but she was supposed to meet the dead guy so they could disappear together from someone who had scared her boyfriend.  Beckett is the only one who believes her at first.  But she points out the fact that the boyfriend kept the tools of the robbery around his apartment, and they managed to get all the stolen stuff back no problem.  It just doesn’t feel right.  She starts looking into the other floors on the building that was robbed on the idea that the stuff stolen was a red herring.

Switch to Castle, who is investigating the secret military base.  Just as those delicious papaya steaks are ready (and Castle is trying to get out of eating them), two agents show up and drag him back to DC.  Once there, they take some blood and leave him in a room.

Finally, Beckett comes in.  They found what the thieves were really after.  On the 8th floor, the company was developing a deadly toxin.  It’s airborne.  It’s what killed the guy in the car, who was indeed being framed.  And they used his car’s ventilation system to give it to him.

Yes, that means Castle was exposed.  Based on the level in his blood, he’s got 24 hours to live.

Cut to black and to be continued.

I’d actually read over the weekend that this was a two part season premier, but I’d already forgotten that.  (And this may be the annual two parter.  They haven’t decided yet.)  I think watching Castle almost die may be at least part of what makes Beckett decide to return to New York.  She’d rather live there than try to figure out how to make a long distance relationship work.  There’s nothing like almost losing someone to put your relationship with them in perspective.

Meanwhile, Pi is quite the character.  Suspicious mind that I am, I’m wondering what the real story is with his passport.  (Probably is, but it could be a plot point down the road.)

The first time we saw Ryan, he was working on swaddling a doll.  It’s four months until Jenny is due, and he wants to be ready.  Something tells me that Ryan as a dad will be comedy gold this season.

Obviously, the ultimate outcome next week is not in doubt.  The show is called Castle after all.  But I’ll be interested in seeing how they spend those 23 hours before they find the antidote.  You know they are going to drag is out as long as they possibly can.

And I’ll try to come up with a few more crazy “spoilers” for the show as well between now and then.


  1. First of all, how in the world is this season 6?! I can't believe there were 5 seasons already, and I can't believe how long it took Castle and Beckett to get together. :-) Part of me was so irritated at Castle for ignoring Beckett and trying to help her. I think I yelled "Get a hobby" more than once. Maybe it's just me, but I think Ryan is SO much more interesting of a character without his family story; I loved when he was working undercover. Maybe happy families just aren't good drama for TV :-)

    1. No, you need some kind of conflict. And actually, I always thought Beckett was the holdout. Castle was willing to be patient. But maybe that's just my take on things.

  2. I was somewhat disappointed with this episode. First of all, I began to watch all the previous episodes of Castle this Summer (thanks to the public library) and I just ended with Season 4 (Season 5 is not at the library yet). I came into Castle half way through Season 2 so it was interesting to see how it all began. My feeling, and something my daughter has shared with me, is that Castle is no longer as "fun" as it used to be. The stories just seem to be getting more serious. My favorite of all the episodes was The Blue Butterfly.
    Anyway, back to this Season. What is up with Kate's makeup? Has she lost weight? There is just something different about her, especially around her eyes. I'm not the only one of my friends that noticed this. Also, when last Season ended everything was so serious leading up to Castle getting down on one knee. This beginning, with her jumping up and giggling and all over the place just did not fit her personality or the way she was acting before. Yes, I'm glad she said yes but it didn't seem in character.
    Pi - I do not like him. He does not seem like someone Alexis would like, let alone fall in love with. Maybe he is supposed to be smart but he's a klutzy smart and just doesn't fit.
    I want to go back to New York and have more of the Captain, Ryan and Espisto. And more "fun" episodes. I'm thinking this will be their last Season.
    Also Kate's partner - I can't get it out of my head that she should be running a hospital :)

    1. And yet I'd argue that The Blue Butterfly wasn't one of the more fun episodes.

      They so seem to have more serious episodes, but they mix them in with the fun. My guess is this coming Monday's episode will be fun, but we shall see. They still usually have the episodes that are more fun surrounding the more serious ones, but they do usually start and end the season with the more serious episodes.

      I bought Kate's reaction to the proposal. She's happy yet confused about motives, especially since she thought they were about to break up.

      And Pi could be interesting or go annoying very quickly. I haven't decided what I think of him yet. It will depend on where they do with him, I guess.