Review: Castle 8.15

I’m torn on this one. I loved the premise of it, but, in what’s been an unfortunate theme this season, the shoddy Loksat elements dampened my enthusiasm.

But let’s start with what I did like. It was great to see Beckett back at the Academy, trading stories with Espo and Ryan and showing what a rockstar she was there (and really, is anyone surprised?) I also enjoyed seeing her as a teacher/mentor figure for the recruits, a role she’s well suited for with all she’s learned throughout the series. Her quick bond with Decker was particularly nice, especially that scene they shared in the gym. I love that Beckett taught her to use being a woman to her advantage, rather than acting as though it was detriment. I wouldn’t expect any less from Kate, but it was a nice beat regardless. I also liked how quickly she put her faith in the young recruit, trusting that Decker could handle a meeting with her dad, not even taking her out when she pulled a gun on him. Basically every character on this show has held a gun on a suspect for a little too long, so join the club, man!

The case was also good, though I don’t know if they played up the creepy “killer among us” aspect enough. That classroom interrogation scene was entertaining, but they could have done more with people questioning the motives of their fellow recruits. However, these are future police officers were talking about it, so it was nice that they had a sense of respect and honor while still defending their murdered colleague. I was glad that Beckett’s mentor wasn’t actually the killer (she’s been burned by way too many already), and that tense gun range takedown of the real murderer was excellent.

After they caught him, it was good that Beckett helped Decker see the benefit of continuing with her police training: using it as a way to finally put her dad behind bars, while also recognizing that it shouldn’t be her only reason for being a cop. It added another layer to the similarities between the two women, with Beckett becoming a cop to get justice for her mom and Decker becoming one to make her dad face his own. However, Kate’s “you can’t do this alone” part of the speech felt tacked on, a cheap way to show that Kate had learned (yet again!) that she and Castle are better off together than apart.

That brings us to Loksat, and man oh man do I have notes. For one, the fact that Castle needed to be convinced by Hayley to tell Beckett the truth was ridiculous. I don’t buy that after a season (and really, a series) of Castle constantly wishing that Beckett would just be honest, he would keep something this big from her. I also feel like the reason for his hesitancy was weird, did he really think Kate would blame him for the deaths of her friends from the A.G.’s office? If I’m Beckett I’m mad because, like in season four, he prevented me from having the whole story about my mother’s murder and made a huge, life-altering decision for me, not because of any accidental role he played in the murders of people I haven’t seen in three years.

Unfortunately, it never really became clear in this episode why Beckett was mad. I can assume it was for the latter reasons, but instead of talking about it they drank, proving once again that they’ve completely forgotten the communication skills they’ve been building over the last four years.  At the end of the hour, I think Beckett came to the conclusion that they’d both made mistakes, they were thus even, and nothing more needed to be said on the subject. Which again, probably sounds familiar because it’s essentially the same understanding they came to at the end of season four, realizing that, oh hey, we should forgive each other because we’re far happier and more productive when we’re a couple working together than when we’re apart. A nice and completely accurate sentiment, sure. But, to sum up my feelings on this entire season: boy is it frustrating to see characters come to a conclusion you thought they’d reached years ago.

What are your thoughts on this episode and the new Caskett development? Hit the comments and let me know!

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