Castle Season 5 Report Card: A-

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With a long, hot summer looming ahead, TV Fanatic is going back and grading the best - and worst - of the 2012-2013 season. 

Having submitted our report cards for The Mentalist Season 5 and Once Upon a Time Season 2, we're taking out our proverbial red pen and moving on. It's time to grade this season of Castle.

Did Kate and Rick's romance work for you? Did the season finale leave you yelling at your TV? Check out our report and then tell us what you thought about Castle Season 5.

Caskett Sighting

Best Episode:  "Still"  Yes, it was a clip show but is was the best damn clip show ever! Watching all of the love, laughs, and drama from all five seasons was a treat. Having Castle stand by Kate even as a the bomb ticked down was a bonus. Finally hearing Beckett tell him she loved him and that they were just beginning…sigh. I'll be rewatching this episode all summer long.

Worst Episode:  "Swan Song" While there were some fans that enjoyed this episode's unique mockumentary style, I felt the entire concept fell flat. Watching Castle and Esposito mugging for the cameras while Beckett and Ryan shyly tried to avoid them worked…for about the first ten minutes. Then it quickly became an annoying gimmick and I found myself wishing it would all be over.

Biggest Improvement:  Caskett. After four long seasons of its audience wishing, hoping, and begging, the show finally made our dynamic duo an official couple.  Nothing was better than watching these two smile at one another over their coffees…while in bed. It's about damn time.

Most Frustrating Moment:  Plenty, I'm afraid. The most annoying thing about this show is that these two incredibly intelligent, likable characters rarely talk to one another.  At times it feels as though every important conversation gets interrupted never to be finished. Like in "After Hours" when Castle begins to address Kate's concerns about them being so different only to be cut off.  And did anyone else have their fingers crossed during "Significant Others" hoping that Kate would find out that Meredith cheated on Castle during their marriage?  It's the missed opportunities on Castle that make me crazy.

Character We Saw in a Whole New Light:  Detective Kevin Ryan. Yes, Ryan has always been adorable and good at his job. We love his bromance with Esposito and his relationship with Jenny, but "The Wild Rover" was a revelation.  Who knew Kevin Ryan could be such a bad ass? In one episode he went from sweet sidekick to an undercover cop with a dangerous streak. Seriously hot!

Character We Need to See More Of:  Dr. Lanie Parsh. It's been five seasons. Why don't we know more about this sassy, sexy lady besides she's Kate's best friend and Esposito's on again/off again booty call?  Lanie Parish is far too dynamic to be kept in the background.

Hopes for 2013:

  • Less Fear:  Or at least have them deal with their fears together. I have loved Kate Beckett since Castle's season one premiere but even I found her frustrating over the last few episodes. Deep down, Kate is afraid that the moment she's all in, Castle will get bored and leave. And Castle has kept things status quo all season because he's terrified that if he pushes for more he'll scare her off. I get it…but that doesn't make it fun to watch.  No matter what the answer is to the proposal at the end of "Watershed" I'm hoping it pushes these two to open up and face their fears…together.
  • More Down Time:  Yes, I know Castle is a crime procedural but to be honest, I don't tune in for the murder of the week. It's the characters that keep me coming back for more and the scenes I love the most are the casual scenes outside of the precinct. Let's see the gang hanging out at the Olde Haunt or another poker game at the loft where Martha can flirt with Esposito.  Those type of scenes from season 1 were huge fun and I miss them.
  • More Romance:  There were some episodes where we didn't even see our favorite couple holding hands and more kisses were cut short than completed.  Thankfully things picked up over the last few episodes and I hope that's a trend going forward. I'm not asking for sex scenes (although I honestly wouldn't complain) but it's the small, intimate moments that make this show and this couple such a joy to watch.

Castle Season 5 Report Card:  A-

Now it's YOUR turn Castle fans. Grade the past 24 episodes:

C. Orlando is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow her on Twitter.


Maggie, please go to the "Sad Faces" Castle review page (has around 360 comments) and look at my theory of the DC job for Beckett. The comments are at the end, or beginning? Page 1.


Rick Castle used to be a smart, funny, rich, well connected, etc., man but the writers have turned him into a jerk. What's with Kate Beckett, she tells him that she loves him but then neglects to tell him that she has applied for an out of town job? Really! The show has a great cast ensemble, not a weak one in the bunch, they should use them more. I think Marlowe should review seasons 1 and 2 or better still take a look at some of the old Nick & Nora Charles episodes. All were A+, this season should be a B. In Watershed, does anyone else think the job offer is a set-up and that there was someone else in the room with the deputy director when he offered Kate the job?


To Tonya and Rich Abey, Nathan made those comments back during seasons 2 and 3. He seemed thrilled to finally have a hit show and scared that the supposed Moonlighting curse could hurt it. By season 4 he seemed very on board with the two leads finally coming together and I've never heard him say a negative word since. I'd also like to see them have more fun, flirty, sexy scenes but that's as much the writers as anyone. Other than the scene at the end of The Hamptons episode there weren't any true sex scenes, so to speak. I wouldn't mind more but I think I'd like them to have more open communication more. Every guest actor on the show always mentions what a great cast and atmosphere the set of Castle is. I've never seen any friction between any of the actors. If anything it seems to be just the opposite.


just like with Bones I really think their relationship hurt this season it really seem like their throw idea at the wall and seening what works


Tonya: I've never thought of it that way and yes you make an excellent point. Even if Nathan and Stana dont get along well they still are too professional to allow personal issues affect their work. Plus Nathan in particular gets paid handsomely ($100,000 per episode I recall ...correct me if i'm wrong). So if the writers want to include more sex scenes, the actors (Nathan specifically) are at least 'contractually obliged' to do so. My guess is that the writers did not specifically include a lot of sex scenes because unlike Castle's previous flings, he has an actual real, mature relationship with kate that is not just defined by steamy sex alone (but looking back at what happened in Watershed it didn't look like a very mature relationship!). Sure all fans would love to see more between-the-sheets action, but what I hope for most is that Andrew Marlowe would do justice to the future of their relationship, at least based on what they have gone through to be at this position.


One more thought for Rich Abey. Speaking of passion, I seem to recall Castle having some pretty wild sex with his deep fried twinkie (Meredith) and with the actress who wanted him to recommend her for the role of Nicki Heat (that chick ripped several of his shirts off and threw him on the bed). If they can create some wild fun for Castle before Beckett, why can't they create at least some fun passion with Beckett? Something just seems to be wrong. I don't know if the writers are just completely dense, or they just don't care, or it is a problem with the actors.


Best Episode: Still. Worst Episode: Cloudy with a Chance of Murder. Biggest Improvement: Bringing a little fun back to the show after season 4's moodiness. Most Frustrating: The moody dark lighting that doesn't go away. The loss of the happy incongruous music when we first see a body. EVERYTHING about the three episodes made after Still. Forced relationship angst. Beckett becoming a wholly unsympathetic character. New Light: Well helloooo Kevin Ryan! More Of: Captain Gates! Hopes for 2013: That the writers and cast rewatch season one and two and remember that (a) the show is supposed to be fun, (b) Castle's not an idiot OR a bad shot, (c) Beckett's not a self-centred coward. This season gets a was a solid B+ before the last three written episodes.


Rich Abey, the comments made by Nathan have mostly been during interviews of him alone, not with Stana present. I agree that most of their interviews, ComicCon appearances, etc. suggest that they like each other. But not all of them. You have to admit that in all of the interviews, Stana is the one who cheered for them to "get it on already" and "let them make Castle babies." Never once do you hear Nathan say that he is excited about getting the characters together or doing kissing scenes with Stana. I have to disagree about the level of passion in S5 kisses. Actually the tally for "almost kisses" is higher than the real thing. Even in Murder, He Wrote, we get ripped off in the passion dept when he yanks her close in one scene, only to have an almost kiss. Even the end scene, when she hops on top of him, all we get is a short and dimly lit peck on the lips! Come on!! He would have been all cave man on her in real life!


Reply to Tonya: I really did not see any significant lack of passion between the 2 leads. Sure i'd love more against-the-door-make-out scenes but wasnt overly dissappointed. This is the first time I heard that Nathan made such comments. I've been a keen follower of the show and of Nathan and Stana for a long time and its news to me. Looking at Nathan's and Stana's interactions both on/off set, i've only seen admiration and fondness between them and a little bit of teasing too, plus does anybody remember the make out scene in Always? Sooo HOT and SEXY! And remember 2 months back when Nathan and Seamus bombed Stana's interview with OTRC...left us all with laughs. Or remember the time they read Heat Rises in Comic Con...that was some serious chemistry and heat between can't fake that! So don't worry we will get plenty of chemistry and haven't they given us 5 seasons of it...which is why we stuck with the show for so long!


I actually enjoyed 'Swan Song'. We got plenty of action from everybody in the precint, including Lanie, which is rare. Plus I loved the nod to Jon Huertas' singing skills with that song at the end and Castle's antics behind Gates's back were hilarious! For me the worst episode was 'Significant Others'. It was a bad idea to allow Meredith to stay over plus at the end it placed some serious seeds of doubts on kate's mind about rick and hence made him the bad guy unfairly as kate didnt get to know what really happened in the divorce, namely Meredith cheating on Castle! They should have at least included a small talk between kate and rick at the end so that he could have presented his side of the story and the real reason for the divorce and not just allow kate to take in the manipulating and devious reasoning of a women who could not even be a mother to her only child (whom she had from a marriage mind you and not from a one night stand).

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Castle Quotes

Sometimes the hardest things in life are the things most worth doing.


Castle: The fact that you even think that breaks my heart. I would walk into a tornado for you, Kate.
Beckett: And I would die if I lost you.