Let's start with the basics: Why do you watch Castle, Captain Elias?
Well, I'll be honest with you, anonymous fictional fan slash questioner, I don't watch it regularly. I tried, but the massive amount of filler episodes in which the killer is invariably the second guy they interview bored me to tears and I just couldn't keep up. Many episodes have died an unwatched death on my DVR, including last week's episode billed as a murder mystery at a beauty pageant. But every so often it fits my mood perfectly, and after all, I believe in it. If you need a reason for my faith and fandom, here it is:
Nathan Fillion. 'Nuff said.
Every season it seems there are a few episodes where they really go for it. Naturally, these are either premieres, finales, or two-parters around sweeps time. This year was no different, only they were all pretty tame and in the end nothing changed (the Love tension between Castle and Beckett has grown almost intolerable.)
And then KABLAMMO the season finale comes and the entire two-dimensional cast going through the motions becomes several distinct characters with humongous emotions. The predictable procedural becomes a fast-paced plot with twists, betrayal, shock, and yes, some satisfaction for the Castle/Becket shippers.
Out of nowhere they wrote a fantastic episode. It was akin to a movie in its action and excitement. The often cheesy dialogue became entirely...well, at least much less cheesy, and for once it was heartfelt and pertinent and it didn't matter if an occasional cliche slipped in. Fillion was wonderful as always, but Stana Katic, who maintains an endearing character despite being a hardcore cop whose entire life is the job yet somehow manages to shop the new Spring lines and wear stilettos while chasing perps, really turned up the acting and became a real woman. One which makes the viewer understand Castle's (now declared!) love, although the whole easy-on-the-eyes bit was a good start.
Every. Scene. Mattered. For once nothing was a throwaway, or stretched to fit a commercial segment. It was a thrill to watch and I look forward to the inevitably dramatic season premiere in the Fall. (First scene in the ER? New Captain? Finally try the show with Castle and Beckett going out?)
There's just one thing I'm not clear on: Is it impossible to write like this every week? Obviously the personal nature of this week's episode and the mystery it relates to is not something you can stretch out for 22 episodes. But even when it's not a homicide case that directly effects their lives, can't the intensity remain? Other cop shows manage to do it, they make every episode matter, they have story arcs that last seasons. Is the primary audience for Castle so unoriginal that they need the same version of a lighthearted murder case over and over? I think the ratings for the finale should tell the showrunners otherwise.
In related and totally awesome news, as Richard Castle told us at the beginning of the show himself, Castle is coming to comics! Well, his fictional character, Derrick Storm, is. That is to say, not one of the books someone wrote in real life pretending to be Castle that were published and marketed brilliantly, but one of the books in the show Castle talks about having written (all clear?) is being adapted into a graphic novel. And none other than the king of the hill Brian Michael Bendis is writing it. Pretty exciting stuff. I'm particularly pleased that Derrick Storm bears a strong similarity to Nathan Fillion.
Can never get enough of Captain Tightpants.