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Castle

Castle Round Table: Season Finale Review, Reaction

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Welcome to the first-ever edition of the Castle Round Table.

Following a truly astounding season finale, our staff was left with no choice but to debut this popular TV Fanatic feature in honor of the ABC hit.

Below, critics Christine Orlando, Jeffrey Kirkpatrick, Courtney Morrison and Chandel Charles pick apart "Knockout." As always, reader feedback on the following topics is encouraged...

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What did you think of Montgomery's involvement in Beckett's mother's murder?

Christine: I thought they did a fantastic job of showing how he made a serious mistake in his younger days and spent the rest of his career trying to atone for it. It added a wonderful complexity to his relationship with Beckett and showed Montgomery as a flawed hero instead of a villain. Ruben Santiago Hudson is such a pro. I'm really going to miss him.

Jeffrey: Completely shocked. Never entered my mind that he would be a part of it. Loved it because rarely on a procedural does a member of the core cast get offed like this and in both villanous and heroic fashion. It opens the series up a bit to taking risks when you remove the barrier that assumes everyone is safe. Watch out, Ryan and Esposito!

Courtney: I was shocked! Montgomery’s always been so good to her, I never would have thought it was to make up for something. I realized he was hiding something but I didn’t think it was that he was the third cop! Have to say, one of the best twists I have seen all season on any show.

Chandel: It was surprising, yet I somehow expected it given the story about how they met, there was a hint of something I couldn't quite place on Montgomery's face and I just knew. What was best about it was how much we learned about Montgomery in his final episode. There was redemption in his actions and it will be sad to continue this journey without him. He was young and made a mistake, but spent his entire career trying to correct it by making Beckett the best detective he could.

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What would you like to see in a new Captain next season?

Christine: Someone who isn't a fan of either Castle or Beckett. That type of thing can be used for drama and comedy. Beckett will have to prove all over again that she's earned her place as the head of the team. Maybe even have Beckett go to the mayor and ask to have Castle remain at the precinct when the new Captain wants him gone. Have Beckett fight to keep Castle around for once. That would be a great twist.

Jeffrey: Breasts. Seriously, I actually would like to see a female captain. It would introduce a different dynamic for the series.

Courtney: I wouldn’t mind seeing Ryan take the job, then we could see a rougher side of him.The new Captain definitely needs to be on board with Castle hanging around. Maybe a woman? Even up the playing field a bit while giving Kate a challenge.

Chandel: Someone wary of Castle's involvement with the department to give the show another angle to work plot wise. Maybe a woman just to get some more girl power in the NYPD, plus I think it would present an opportunity for Beckett to maybe make a female friend in the department. Marlowe has presented himself with a wide array of storytelling opportunities with this sudden vacancy.

How will Castle's confession (that he loves Kate) be handled?

Christine: I'd love for them to handle it straight on but that just isn't Castle. I think Kate has issues she needs to work out before she can openly reciprocate those feelings but I think she needs to give him some hope to stick around.

Jeffrey: Oh, they'll find some way to draw it out. Coupling on a procedural is dicey, particularly with your two leads. The will they or won't they is part of what keeps Castle fans simultaneously excited and frustrated. Why ruin a good thing (ratings-wise)?

Courtney: Hopefully the writers won’t go the typical route in that Beckett never heard him because she was unconscious. The perfect scenario would be Kate waking up in the hospital and saying “I love you too, Rick.” One can only dream...

Chandel: In a way that's very true to their relationship. I think it should be handled in the break room over coffee or something; coffee has always been their subtle sign of affection for one another. Give them some time to get Kate through her recovery so that his confession and their discussion isn't just something said in the moment Castle thought he was losing her. Adds a little bit of credibility.

Do you want to see Castle and Beckett get together in season four?

Christine: Absolutely.  I'm tired of every show keeping their leads apart. It's so boring! Castle and Beckett have amazing chemistry. They'll make such a fun couple with lots of new story avenues to mine. I'm okay with the show taking its time and I'm all for enjoying the ride, but I'll be horribly disappointed if we don't see them move this relationship forward by mid-season. Watching these two date will be sweet, funny, and really entertaining.

Jeffrey: No. I really don't ever want them to get together. (Gonna get hate for that one.) I love that they care for each other, but would rather it be as best friends rather than anything amorous.Why does every show HAVE to couple its main characters?

Courtney: I understand the writers' hesitation to build up the relationship before making them a couple, but come on, it’s season four! Even if they don’t get together in a full-on relationship, they need to move a little forward. I wouldn’t mind some between the sheets action. I’m just saying.

Chandel: They aren't ready yet. Plot-wise, it seems that Castle is going to come into some information that he'll be keeping from Beckett regarding her mother's murder. I don't know if they can really be together until Beckett's mother's murder is solved. What they can do is continue to maintain their strong partnership, deal with Castle's confession, and then build from there in a way that's true to them, which I know Andrew Marlowe will pursue with great care. Great love stories take time.

Which secondary character(s) had the best scene and which scene?

Christine: Martha's scene with Rick when she calls him out on how he can't voice his feelings was such a powerful moment. Susan Sullivan maybe gets one scene an episode, but boy does she know how to make it count. 

Jeffrey: When Ryan and Esposito found out about Montgomery's involvement. Their opposing reactions and near throwdown over it was fantastic.

Courtney: A definite tie for Ryan and Esposito. Their scene outside the bar after discovering Montgomery’s role in the case was outstanding. Their bromance is always a highlight on the show, but these two displayed some real acting, both emotionally and physically.

Chandel: I think Ryan and Esposito's moment in the alley was another favorite moment because they were so torn up about the possibility of Montgomery being the third man that they got into a little skirmish. Neither one of them really wanted to admit the possibility. Even though they roughed each other up, their relationship is so strong that it only took a single look between the two of them to convey understanding and forgiveness. It's a rare thing for two people to have that kind of relationship, so I appreciate it's portrayal in the episode.

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I LOVE TinkonBrink's comment on Beckett having to fight against the new captain in order for Castle to stay her "partner." That would say a lot about Kate's valuing of him. It would show she saw him as more than just the, "funniest kid in school." I'm also curious to find out more about the mayor. It could be the man is another Montgomery....

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If the new captain is a woman, I really hope she doesn't become a love interest for Castle. Unless of course it is all one-sided... on her side! I can't begin to say how tired I am of the love triangles. Every show has them. There are far more creative ways to keep people apart. I do think the writers are looking at more creative ways though. I hope! It sure sounds like they have plenty of ideas to work with going into season 4 with Castle trying to protect Beckett and her trying to determine just how serious his "I love you" was. As far as them getting together in Season 4... I will be okay as long as there is *positive* progress. I do think the Season 4 finale would be a good time to have them make a significant step in that direction. Season 5 is a good season to begin a little more flirting. Of course if they move faster I will be pleasantly surprised and delighted! Just please don't take too long! Drawing something out can kill it just as easily as going too fast. I can't wait to see how this show progresses though. The writing and chemistry between the cast is wonderful!

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-Montgomery's involvement: It is very interesting that Beckett's Father/father figures all seem to have feet of clay. He father's struggle with alcoholism, Royce's fall from grace and Montgomery's hidden secret past. All characters however, seem to find some form of redemption or forgiveness. Jim Beckett got his life back together (with the help of his daughter), Royce's letter with words of wisdom from beyond the grave and Montgomery's struggle to be a better man, to make amends. Judging by the files Montgomery removed from his safe, his involvement in Johanna Beckett's case is not over and will still be felt in season four. -New Captain: Castle does a very good job of taking situations or words and using them again. When they are repeated they could be seen as a mirror or reverse to what happened before. (Good examples of this include, Beckett giving Castle 'magic' flowers after his break up with Gina...only to have Castle bring flowers to Beckett's door when her mother's case gets too much, Beckett standing in the precinct (outside the 'Doorway of Heartbreak') at the end of season two. Beckett goes to tell Castle her feelings only to have Gina interrupt...Castle (standing outside that 'Doorway of Heartbreak' again) after the events of the freezer and the bomb, goes to say something to Beckett only to spot Josh.) So, I could see the conversation Beckett & Montgomery had (about it not being up to the Mayor if Castle stays at the 12th) being repeated with a twist in season 4. If everything runs in counterpoint then the new boss will be female and will not fit into the 'family'. This time will it be Beckett fighting for Castle to stay? -Castle's confession: If Montgomery sent those files to Castle then he will be holding a 'plot bomb' of information that is just waiting to go off. In much the same way, Beckett is holding her own explosive secret (she did hear Castle say "I love you" before she lost consciousness). It is when these two incendiary devices go off (and who finds out the others secret first) that determines the outcome. I'll say this, Castle is a wordsmith, his declarations are mostly verbal (the "Always" the "I love you, Kate".) Beckett's more of an action kind of girl (placing her hand on Castle's knee to comfort him after the 3XK case.) The clue that Beckett not only heard Castle's confession but feels the same way...may not manifest itself in words…but gestures. -Castle & Beckett together in season 4?: I have mixed feelings on this. It's interesting in post-finale interviews Andrew Marlowe uses the words "moving forward" or "grow" when it comes to Castle & Beckett. I'm fine as long as there is forward progression. There will be a lot of fallout from season 3 to deal with in season 4, a lot of baggage and a lot of conflict. How the Castle-Beckett relationship navigates this will be interesting, it's time that Beckett realises that Castle's not just the schools funniest kid...when he says "always" he means it. It's also time that Beckett stop shutting the door on Castle, that gunshot could have left her with some serious regrets and a lot of "if only"... -Secondary characters scene: It has to be Lockwood & Montgomery. For anyone to stand with a teddy bear and be that menacing! He not only frightens tough NYPD cops...he frightens cuddly toys everywhere! I also loved the conversation between Jim Beckett & Castle. The look on Castle's face when he found out that Beckett talked about him with her dad...it was like all his Christmases had come at once (he really has got it bad!) Finally, thank you for this discussion. I hope you consider doing more like this in the future. Castle is a really great show and it deserves all the recognition that it gets.

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This is a great idea! What I love most about Castle is how the longer you watch, the more intriguing the writing gets. Piggy-backing on Christine's comment, I knew Montgomery was going down when I heard him mention retiring the week before, and I got early in the finale that he was the third cop. (Three years worth of episodes and it never occurred to me until the finale started - GREAT TWIST) Yet, it was far from a predictable episode. Watching the pieces falling into place - about his protection of Beckett over the years, how he got involved in the mess in the first place, wondering if he was going to take Beckett out, the realization that he was going to sacrifice himself for her - it all was riveting television. Personally, I think Ruben Santiago Hudson deserves an Emmy nod for that performance. The episode really shows how a plot twist doesn't have to be out of nowhere or completely change the characters' core. The story told make sense within what we'd been told about all of the characters. I think that's the difference between a good drama, and a fun soap-opera. Soap-operas don't really have to make sense character-wise because the situations carry the story. That being said, I have to disagree with Jeffery about Castle and Beckett getting together. The ultimate problem with will they/won't they, is that it's a fallacy. It's actually more like "When will they?" If the writer wants a story about best friends, then writing in the sexual tension with increasing emotional intimacy probably isn't a good idea. The writer has to come up with more and more contrived roadblocks to keep the characters apart - usually in ways that become more and more out-of-character. Storywise, there comes a point where the audience goes, "this is stupid" and drifts away from watching. Again, losing the audience is far less of a problem when the show is episodic to begin with. I just know that, for me, as an audience member, it sucks when it starts happening in the middle of a well-written drama. Likewise, I think in the way Montgomery was made to be neither all good or all bad, a romantic relationship can have the same kind of dynamics. Marlowe seems to have a good read on this. I think (hope) they are now past using other people to keep them apart. It doesn't make sense anymore. Castle called Beckett on being with men she doesn't love, and the same goes for him trying to be with other women. There are enough issues between them to make their hesitation real without tossing in a third-party. So, I agree with Courtney. C&B between the sheets in season four. Kind of like a touch of Burn Notice: with the on-again, off-again, but partners either way, thing. That would make sense in terms of what's gone on so far, and give AM more dynamics to play with. Terri Miller tweeted that she and Marlowe are the "writer versions" of Caskett. See: Shrek." From what I know about the Shrek movies, the winning the princess and living "Happily Ever After" was unexpected and the beginning of the journey rather than the end. I think it bodes well that when Castle and Beckett DO get together, the story will become more interesting, not less.

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Thanks so much for giving this fantastic show the attention it deserves! Nearly every week, we fans find a LOT to talk about! I'm addicted to spoilers so I had a pretty good idea going into the finale that Montgomery was somehow involved in Johanna Beckett's case and would die. However, I give Will Beall a ton of credit for coming up with a believable backstory that allowed the captain to die a hero in most respects. I'm also glad that Kate had a chance to forgive him. I think that will help her accept what he did. I understand Marlowe's desire to shake things up a bit at the precinct with a new captain and I can certainly accept the idea that any incoming person would highly question the arrangement with Castle. I'd still like to see the role go to a male because I don't want Castle to be able to charm a female in any way. I want Castle to earn the new guy's respect. I know Marlowe says he'll have Kate acknowledge the "I love you" at some point, and I believe he will. Would I like it to be sooner rather than later? Definitely! However, I've come to accept the fact that it's Marlowe's story and he'll tell it in his way and his time frame. As long as I continue to see Kate and Rick grow towards each other next season, even if it's baby steps, I'll be happy. In the second half of season 4, I definitely would like to see some dating. Kate and Rick don't have to become a committed couple just yet, but should most definitely dip their toes into the water. They function so much like a couple already that I have to believe there will be plenty of fun and spice even if they're dating. My favorite supporting character scene was the alley fight between Ryan and Esposito. That was raw and those guys knocked it out of the park with their acting. Seamus tweeted one day after filming, that he had bumps and bruises to show how realistic it was! Those 2 guys add so much to the show! One other comment. I hope that the actor who played Jim Beckett continues to be used next season as a recurring character now that he's met Castle and was present at the funeral. He did a great job with his scene and I'd like to see him used more if he's available.

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Not sure about having a female captain. I like the dynamic that Becket is surrounded by men and Castle is surrounded by women. Also, regarding the Captain being shot...He was shot in the chest. Why wouldn't the Captain have worn a vest to the hanger, hmmm. I don't recall seeing any blood like with Beckett. Wishful thinking I know.

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Ahh, it's so nice to finally read some well thought out, coherent, non-tweenage thoughts on Castle! *wipes tear* Remind me to come back to this continuously in season 4! I agree with you all whole-heartedly. Beckett has crap to go through before she can be with Castle (I actually agree with one of them; I think Beckett has a complex where she can't be with Castle properly until her mother's murder is solved) - and pushing this and their not being a couple past season 4 will get on the Bones side of the coin. Not cool. But I know Marlow knows this, so I'm fine with it all. I just can't drop the thought that if they get together successfully -still just as sexy, sweet, intreguing and funny, with the ratings - it would be the most incredible thing for a television show. I reckon they could do it. To the person who suggested Morena Baccarin as the new captain...oh my god. Do NOT screw with my head like that =P

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I love how this show has an equal number of males and females in the cast - four and four. Is there any other show with such equal representation of the sexes? I think most other shows (dramas or comedies) tend to have more men than women. But here we have Castle, Ryan, Esposito, and Montgomery on one side of the gender divide, and Beckett, Lainie, Mom and daughter on the other side. It's pretty cool. I'm not sure how a new female captain would work. I would prefer more time given to Beckett's relationship with Lainie or even with Alexis or Martha than to a new female captain. Of all the cast, Montgomery had the least time onscreen, and that was appropriately. I don't want too much time given to the new character, male or female - it will mean less time for the others. I also don't want either Esposito or Ryan promoted - they are the perfect Rosencrantz and Guildenstern for this show. They do wonders as they play off each other, and their exchanges range from subtle comedy to broad comedy to gripping drama. I also really love their devotion to Beckett.

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What a fabulous round-table discussion! I hope you do more in the future! These critics are great!

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This was one of the greatest episodes of Castle to air to date. I think Season 4 is going to be even greater story telling, and more viewers are going to get sucked into the Castle vortex. It appears to me that the cast really responds to Will Bealle's scripts, and you there is no denying the emotional investment each of their characters deliver us to the resolve of Joanne Beckett's murder. It was an absolute pleasure watching the performance from Reuben Santiago Hudson. His scene in the helicopter hangar was nothing short of Stunning. Jon Huertes and Seamus Deaver also got to show us some real chops throughout the entire episode. The alley scene was brilliant.
But i think what did it for me was the exchanges between Castle and Beckett outside the hangar. Nathan Fillion and Stana Katic are a powerhouse together when it comes to projecting the passion in the moment. It was violent, yet tender, frustrating, yet understanding. And all portrayed in less than 15 seconds. Simply beautiful. Season 4 looks like its going to be a real ride, and I can't wait to see what Andrew Marlowe and his talented cast and crew (how beautiful were the sets and lighting all season?) has up their collective sleeves. New Captain, new stories, new romance (we can only hope). But does anyone know what were those files Capt. Montgomery mailed? My guess is that they are the real files of Joanne Beckett and her 3 associates all murdered. And I bet they are going to Castle.
Cheers Castle Fans. Have a great and safe Summer!

Castle Season 3 Episode 24 Quotes

Unless you're a lot dumber than you look, you care about her too. Don't let her throw her life away.

Mr. Beckett

I've been going to that prison for the past four months to have a staring contest with the devil, and the devil just blinked.

Beckett
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