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Castle Round Table: "Heroes & Villains"

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Welcome to the latest edition of the Castle Round Table!

This week, TV Fanatic writers Christine Orlando, Chandel Charles, Christine Morrison and Jim Garner bring their analyzing game to "Heroes & Villains," picking apart various aspects of the episode and debating various topics. Won't you join them?

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What was your favorite scene?
Christine: When Castle went to Beckett's apartment. I love seeing these two outside of work. His awkward look when she opened the door made me wonder what he thought she was doing... because I don't believe he was thinking yoga. But the best part was Kate's smile when she saw he was there. It made my night.

Chandel: The end when Castle and Beckett are watching Hastings and her man friend enter the elevator and Castle muses about how similar their relationships are. Then the two make out in the elevator and Beckett gives this little smile like she might have entertained the thought of that being her and Castle and he asks about coffee. It was really sweet.

Courtney: Definitely going with Castle using the board to post up his comics and trace where the Lone Vengeance's costume came from. He was so on board, even Beckett was following. Gates? Not so much. It was pure and simple fun.

Jim: As a comic geek myself, I have to go with Castle's break down of how Lone Vengence has made up his costume. I suspect that his breakdown is exactly how the writers came up with it for real.

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Do you think Alexis following Ashley to school and wanting to take his classes is out of character? As a parent, did Castle says enough about it?
Christine: No. She's been through a lot that could cause her to cling to Ashley more now than ever. Plus, I had a good friend who was just as smart as Alexis but did the same thing, following her boyfriend to college and even sharing his major. They had broken up by the end of freshman year. I liked Castle's response. It was questioning but not preachy but I'd like to see him put his foot down about them living together. To me, that's just taking things a step too far.

Chandel: I think Alexis is out of character for sure. I mean, I get that she maybe feels a little rejected because her father has been investing a lot in Beckett, but Alexis completely overreacted when Castle tried to explain why she should be taking time to explore her own passions. I really don't understand how we went from that to moving in with Ashley. That really threw me for a loop. It's like they want to take Alexis in another direction, but aren't sure how to get her there.

Courtney: It's hard to remember that she is just a senior in high school, especially since she has been acting like she is 50 from the beginning of the series. I don't think it is out of character for a teenager, she wants to be with her boyfriend. Is it out of her character? Yeah, a little. This is someone who always wants to do the right thing, not just someone else's idea of the right thing. Castle handled it the right way, explained that she needs to make choices, not just use Ashley's.

Jim: While I don't think her wanting to spend that much time with Ashley was out of character, her apathy toward her own future was absolutely out of character. As Castle said, Alexis has always been serious; she would have had an end-game for the classes. Castle said enough, as pointed out by Beckett, pushing too hard would just make her rebel that much more.

Fans seem torn over Victoria "Iron" Gates. Do you like what she brings to the precinct or would you prefer her gone?
Christine: I like that she keeps everyone a little off balance. Everyone gets a boss like this sooner or later. If you make her look good, she's in your corner. If not, watch out. Beckett's no longer the golden child she was with Montgomery and Castle's trying to justify his worth. I think it makes things more interesting at the precinct.

Chandel: I'm not sure how I feel about her yet. She brings a certain tension, but I'm not clear on her motives or how I feel about her personality. She's kind of an enigma. So I just think I need a little bit more time to see what she adds to the precinct.

Courtney: She's going to be by-the-book and not bending over to help out Castle and Beckett. It may not be ideal situation, but it gives the two a new challenge they haven't yet faced. As of now, I'm good with Gates.

Jim: Honestly, she's as sour as day old lemons! The fact that she want's to be called "Sir" instead of "Ma'am" bugs the ever living snot out of me! Having come from a military background, I can say: even high ranking female Generals want to be called "Ma'am." GAH!! Begone foul beast!

Beckett tells Hastings, “You’re a good cop and you have somebody who cares about you. Don’t be so driven by your past that you throw away your future.”  Do you think Beckett will be able to take her own advice?
Christine: It seemed as though Beckett caught the similarities to her own life. I'm hoping she starts to come to terms with things by mid-season and realizes her future is standing right next to her.

Chandel: Interestingly enough, I think eventually she may be able to do so. But it may take solving her mother's case. I think the pace of her pursuit will decrease until she herself realizes this point. Yet I think this understanding can't truly be realized until she can see who she is without her mother's case running in the background of her mind. It was a great line and great job by the writers.

Courtney: She will... eventually. She is going to wrestle with her past a little more before she can get past it and move on. Hopefully into the arms of the sexy Nathan Fillion.

Jim: Sadly for the fans, not any time soon. I do hope that she and Hastings visit again, I think Kate needs that mirror to help get her to the point she can let down the walls and let some hunky writer in.

So Beckett sees herself as Elektra and Castle as Batman. Who is your favorite superhero?
Christine: The Wonder Twins. I know it's goofy but my husband and I occasionally reference them when we figure something out together.

Chandel: I did not grow up in the age of Marvel characters with which I can identify. But if I had to really choose one, it would be Kate Beckett. Marvel character or not, she is a super hero to me, kryptonite and all.

Courtney: Emma Frost.

Jim: I have always been a Spiderman fan. After all he is mild mannered and honorable. Right, Rick?

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    I've watched episode more than I care to admit and it would appear, based on this and subesquent 2 episodes that the relationship between Castle and Beckett is substantially different this season. Kate is in therapy now, by choice, because she wants to work on herself. As she tells Michael Dorn (great shrink voice, btw): I don't know where to begin. And so she softens ever so much. The beginning is their friendship, that had been sorely tested. While it is functionally, for the purposes of television, a 'reset' of the relationship, the difference is that now she knows how he feels, and ses how that admission has translated into a seriousness she never knew. He worked tirelessly on her case until he was removed from the precinct. It is a subtle, but most definite esclation of emotional stakes, and it is to the writers credit that this can be conveyed even when the story premise lightens, as it did last night (10/3).

    Corlando

    David- Oh, I love that idea. Like you, I haven't read anything about the actress leaving the show and it seems unrealistic given how smart Alexis is that she wouldn't get into the school. The one thing that would make her rethink her decision is a falling out with Ashley. I'd like to see it play that way but we'll have to wait and see if the writer's like it to.

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    Hmm dunno maybe it's just me and the numerous fanfics I've written for various series..
    But can anyone else see Alexis/Ashely coming to a huge crash and burn?? If Alexis is staying in the series and I've not seen any rumors online saying she's leaving, the way to do it is have a huge bustup between AshLexis. It's also a good growing up experience for Alexis.
    If they write it in I sure hope they make it that Kate plays a major role in it and Alexis goes ot her for advice ..
    We'll see how it plays out but I do see a AshLexis bustup in the near future.

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    Favorite scene - I thought it was clever writing when Beckett and Hastings had their conversation and it was apparent there was something going on in Beckett's mind while she listened to Hastings. I think it took a brick or two out of the wall. Alexis - I agree with others that her behavior at times is just to bug Castle. She has to be a little concerned that she's been #1 in his life and now she's having to share him with Beckett. She adds a needed dimension to audience appeal. I wonder if she will really leave NY for Stanford. That would be a loss. Iron Gates - I think the writers dreamed up the whole Montgomery epoch at the end of the last season to 1) make that last show intriguing and 2) to pave the way for a fresh character to shake up the comfortable groove the detectives and Castle had settled into. Her character brings many opportunities for the writers to have sub-plots going on to change the pace of the show. I agree with everybody else the "Sir" thing is an unpleasant distraction, but it's just a writer's ploy to establish the nature of her character. Relationship development - It's a blinding glimpse of the obvious that this is the biggest challenge the writers are facing. The "Bones" situation has been mentioned and I would add the Harm and Mac situation from "JAG" which went on for years but finally culminated in their engagement on the last show. This is only the fourth season for Castle and Beckett but so far there have been almost no scenes of romantic interaction (mainly tactile) between the two. Harm and Mac were allowed several close scenes over the years, especially in the later years. The writers will have to be clever in letting this happen to Castle and Beckett so we can get a little satisfaction but without giving too much to keep us from coming back. It's an old hook but it sure works. Just give us a little encouragement that Kate is "de-icing" a little bit. Personal comment - I do not like Beckett's hair style this season. Straight hair with no hair covering part of her forehead is not flattering to her. Her forehead is too high and her nose is more prominent this way. I wish they would go back to her season 3 hair style. They've gone from short hair in the first season to this, so I guess it is a seasonal thing to change the look each year. She has a harsher look which I think needs to be softened.

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    Favorite Scene: Beckett suddenly realizing that Castle doesn't believe that the reporter is actually the killer. Even though she's not sure of what he's onto, she follows Castle's lead out of complete respect for him. That kind of deep respect is the solid foundation for the very best of relationships and it was deeply touching, from my perspective. Alexis: Stanford is a very big school and with a completely different "culture" than Alexis is used to growing up in NYC. Knowing hat her boyfiend is out there with all those sun-bathing co-eds is enough to make any girl a little insecure. Plus, as someone else pointed out, her dad had been deeply preoccupied with Beckett. He is building a new life that for the first time is not centered around her. It's like a double dose of abandonment. Alexis would have to be super-human, herself, not to be a bit on edge. So, "out of character"? No. Just a new and different angle of a young woman going through two major transitions in her life simultaneously. Iron Gates: Castle and Beckett were in a comfortable groove under Montgomery's administration. Gates is an entirely new factor in the equation. A catalyst, of sorts, that could either draw our leads closer together in an "us vs. her" situation OR she could actually drive a wedge between them. Or both, sequentially. Gates offers the writers a plethora of story arc options. I'm not a fan of A-type managers in real life but, in this case, I can see how Gates could actually serve to force the reluctant lovers to get real. (So I don't give a fig what people have to call her.) The Relationship Development: Early on, there were a lot of comparisons to "Moonlighting" and how everything went downhill once the leads finally got together. It's a deeply flawed comparison. The leads in "Moonlighting" didn't grow at all. They were just two immature egocentrics in a purely chemical-driven attraction. Castle is growing into a better man because of Kate. And Kate is finally motivated to heal her heart more than solve her mother's murder, thanks to Rick. If these two get together, it wouldn't end the tension in their relationship. Because that would just be taking their joint adventure to a whole nuther level. And wouldn't it be ironic if they relationship pushed Kate off the force and they formed a freelance team of private investigators? Superhero: For me, it's none of the Marvels. It's Laura Croft all the way! PS: Why is there NO speculation about the identity of the guy who's too big for Kate to touch behind her mother's murder? Is it someone we've never met? That would be a cheap trick. Or could it be someone who's been in the distant background yet pivotal from the very start? Now that would be really slick!

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    I think I might be the only one whose favourite scene was Detective Ryan playing Castle...I loved that scene. The idea that a writer is playing cop is farfetched, so having Ryan build exposition like Castle just reaffirms the effect and value that he has to those cops. Also, I laugh everytime they call Gates "sir". I think it's hilarious. I agree with some of the previous posters. Teens like Alexis actually do exist - straight arrow, mature, responsible (I was one of them, I know). Alexis making a questionable judgement call isn't terribly out of character (remember the cheerleading episode), but her complete rejection of reason and absurd reason for rejecting it was way out there for her, and for the show. Castle may be immature but he's never been so immature that he's been a bad or inconsiderate father. When it matters, he's been solid. I like how things with Beckett and Castle are right now - I like that Beckett knows where she is and what she needs to be able to move on. But this better be resolved this season. They can't let Castle turn into Bones - WAYYYY too long.

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    I do like Alexis on the show, out of character or not, I liked the way Castle responded to the situation. BUT, what I don't like is the superial tone she use with her father. I mean, Castle is the coolest Dad ever (in my opinion xD), and we know he can be immature but I think he's a good dad anyway. I really don't know what she can reproch him. Yes, he can be childish but he really really care for her, he lets her be her own person, he gives her freedom, he is really here for her, always. I really don't understand what she reproches him...

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    For a woman in a male dominated society being called "Sir" is her way to make her one of the boys. It's dumb but there you go. I know it's a stupid writer thing but maybe there's a story line about it sometime? Personally I hate her being called Sir.
    I'd just call her Captain, which is her appropriate title anyways.
    I've never liked Alexis and am glad she's doing normal teenager stuff, she was always miss perfect like grounding herself and other Miss perfect things.
    I think the thing that made me not like her was when she came into the police station and gave her dad a mouthful for checking up on the violin teacher, if my daughter did that to me, well I wouldn't tolerate that, after all I am her Dad :) Moving on.. Did Castle say coffee at the end I thought he said tomorrow?
    Best part was the look Kate had at the end, I read it was wanting to do that with Castle (kissing) but the actors do need to work on their body language a bit better this scene could have been played out in subtle ways so much better than it was. Prefer they get together or at least kiss sooner rather than later. After the Bones debacle I'm not sticking around 6 years to see them together.
    I'd actually like to see them almost accidentally kiss like in She's Out of My League where he's undoing her seat belt and they kiss almost accidentally? You know how Kate sometimes sticks her face to Ricks just to tease him?
    Right at the very end of an Ep I'd like to see her do that and Rick leans in and kisses her right smack on the lips, fade to black... No super hero

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    -I'm torn between Kate's smile when she opens her door and finds Castle there or the look on her face when the couple kisses in the elevator. Both are great shipper moments. -It's unusual for Alexis to not be focused on her education but she's young and in love. That can make a teenage girl do strange things. -I can't stand that she insists on being called Sir. That seems so dumb. Other than that I'll reserve judgement until later in the season because I loved the actress on 24. -Kate's not stupid. She may not be ready to deal with everything yet but she has to know that she has some of the same issues. -Superman all the way!

    Blu

    Fave scene-anytime castle spoke about a superhero....he was so excited it was contagious. I was grinning like a comic book geek myself, and Im not. Alexis- I love this girl. I was this girl...still am. Her love of ashley is in character. her disregard for her own future was out of character. I love the fact that she represents some teens who are actually mature and I hate when the writers feel they haveto give into teen stereotypes by making her do reckless and stupid things like every other reen on tv. I thought castle handled it well. he always does. big kid aside he is one of the best dads on primetime and their scenes make me smile. I continue to like what Gates offers, though I simply detest the 'sir' thing. I identified with beckett..its always easy giving others advice that you should heed to yourself. getting the advice and doing something about it are different things. Cant say that I have a favorite superhero