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Castle Review: Creepy Clowns & Seashell Stories

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I walked away with several thoughts after Castle Season 6 Episode 8

Diamonds are nothing but shiny rocks. Clowns are darn creepy. And seashells are the next chapter in a great love story.

Let's start from the beginning...

Not Looking Happy

Barrett Hawk sitting next to Alice Clark in that car as he shut off her ringing phone was fairly disturbing. He was just so darn calm about the dead woman in the driver's seat.

Kudos to Anthony Ruivivar who struck just the right note between cocky and menacing as the professional fixer. I was actually a little relieved he wasn't the murderer.

When they uncovered that Alice's boyfriend, Matt, had a secret identity I thought that was the end of the story. Matt/Leo's back story about the blood diamonds and his crusade to end the savage violence surrounding those gemstones was a surprising twist. But I was even more surprised when he turned out not to be our killer.

Esposito and Ryan played a huge role in the investigation and I couldn't have been happier. It was great fun hearing them share their own relationship theories as in this Castle quote...

Ryan: I don't know about you but I am very comfortable in my masculinity.
Esposito: You do realize you're wearing a sweater vest, right?

I don't think anyone can question either's masculinity after that epic gun battle. There was so much to love in those action packed moments.

First, I knew someone was going to try and steal that diamond from the boys at some point. Driving around town with a $60 million gemstone in your pocket is just asking for trouble.

Even though I suspected it was coming, when their car got hit, I definitely flinched. Then these two proved what an amazing team they are.

From Espo pulling Ryan down in the car when the shots rained down around them to the two of them covering one another as they ran for the cover of the subway stop, they were nothing short of the dynamic duo of the 12th precinct.

And on a side note, I have to mention that thanks to watching the movie Poltergeist when I was as a kid and tonight's episode of Castle, I'm probably going have nightmares about evil clowns tonight.  

As if clowns weren't creepy enough.

Castle

Exactly. Moving on…

Kate and Rick's debate over Linus the Lion was really adorable. I mean, Castle named him Linus! And he bought him with his first royalty check from In a Hail of Bullets, so he wasn't just being stubborn. There was obviously sentimental value there for Castle.

But Kate was waking up to a glaring lion. I could see how that could be intimidating.

Castle's original takeaway from Alice's relationship book was destined to backfire.

Castle: You see, I'm honoring you by inviting you into my territory and Linus is part of that territory.
Beckett: And if you want to be invited into my territory again, you should probably rethink that.

Whereas Kate countered him perfectly at every turn. She even pretended to be fine when he mentioned she should ditch her elephants on parade. Of course, we all knew he didn't mean it and I'd always suspected he had a soft spot for that desk ornament.

I actually like those elephants. They obviously have family values and this one's good with money.

Castle

But it was the final scene that brought it all together. Castle realized that they needed the loft to be about their story if it was going to be their home.

So down came Linus and up went seashells. His gesture was made all the more special in that Kate immediately recognized the shells that they'd collected together on their first walk on the beach in the Hamptons. I'd say that move definitely got him back into Kate's territory.

Because it wasn't his story or her story. It was their story. And it was perfect….almost.

I probably sound like a broken record but that was a perfect opportunity for a kiss. The fact that there wasn't one was actually a distraction from an otherwise almost perfect story.

Am I overreacting or was Castle and Beckett's shared seashells enough to make this story perfect for you?

Review

Editor Rating: 4.6 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.1 / 5.0 (180 Votes)

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

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I enjoyed this episode. The absence of Alexis made it so much better. And we got some much needed bromance between Ryan and Espo once again. Warning: Off-topic post below. Some of my caveats with the show's direction in general come below. James, Exactly! Beckett hides information from Castle and decides to move to Washington. No apology. Castle does something much less wrong. Apology. Alexis behaves like a brat. No apology. Castle overstates his feelings just once. Apology. It is really getting annoying to see that Castle has to be the one who gives in all the time. I agree that he was so much better in the first couple of seasons, when the writers seemed to be playing with his character. I also hate it that we've been constantly shown that Beckett is this broken, damaged woman because of her mother's murder. Not enough has been spoken about the fact that Castle probably had the most difficult upbringing of all the characters in the show. He had no idea who his father was. Martha doesn't seem to be the most responsible of mothers, and she was not a very successful actor. That would've made for some really hard times. Richard Castle is a self-made man. We never see these multiple facets of his character. That's a huge problem for me. The writers seem to have found a sweet spot in terms of writing his character. Have him spout a few over-the-top theories that make the fans laugh. Have him be aloof and crack a few jokes here and there. Have him always be the one who gives in to every woman in his life. Mother barges in. He gives her space. Ex-wife barges in when he is in another relationship. He gives her space. Daughter barges in with a hipster. He gives her space. Becketts forces him to remove a personal memento off his wall. The writers have formed this image of a Castle who's so caring and affectionate that it has become very one-dimensional. And the even bigger problem is that it cannot be changed right now. I know some of you are saying that this is how Castle's always been. But I've been seeing some of the earlier seasons, and he really does come across as a much more well-rounded character. That hasn't been the case in the last two seasons, and that's sad for a show that's named Castle.

Tonya b
@ Balaji Sivaraman

OMG Balaji, are we in sync mentally? You said it all correctly!! I just watched the S3 premier rerun on TNT and I was reminded that the die hard Beckett fans were so upset that Castle went off to the Hamptons with Gina in the S2 finale that Marlowe actually 'adjusted' the premier to allow Beckett, Ryan, Espo, and even Capt. Montgomery to be pretty darn mean to Castle. I was shocked to see once again just how mean they were to him. And you are right, Castle really did nothing wrong, but he is the ONLY one who was forced to apologize. Ryan nearly shot him and called him a dirtbag, and neither one would even look at him let alone speak to him at first. But Beckett accepts a job in another city without even telling her PARTNERS that she was interviewing for it, and we see no animosity towards her at all, and specifically no apology! Beckett continued to be very mean to him in spite of learning positively that he did not know that she broke up with Demming before he left for the summer! Seriously? The best example of the huge double standard between Beckett vs. Castle in the bad behavior/apology department came in Always. When Beckett asked "....and how could you do this?" and Castle replied with, "Because I love you. But you already know that, don't you? You've known for about a year now." Laughably, Beckett replies, "Are you serious, you're bringing this up now, after you just told me that you betrayed me....." So in a nutshell, when Castle tells her that he knows that she lied to him for an entire year, Beckett basically replies with 'how dare you bring up my huge lie when I'm mad about your lie.' Waaa, waaa, waaa (can you hear the baby crying as the tiny violin plays.) It doesn't matter that Beckett actually LIED for selfish reasons, while Castle withheld information (and practically had no choice in the matter) for the sole purpose of trying to save Beckett's life. Sure, we got the global "I'm so sorry" at the end but it only minimally compensated for how horribly she treated Castle. Think about it, if she didn't cart Castle off to bed at the end and that apology was all there was, do you really think the series would have survived?
I also agree that from season 4 up to now, Castle has been reduced as a man and we've lost the self-assured and confident character that we used to love.
Lastly, I can't agree more with your statement that "Castle probably had the most difficult upbringing of all the characters in the show," yet, as Martha said so well, "Whatever mistakes I've made in my life, I raised a good man." On the other hand, from everything that we've been told, Beckett had an idyllic childhood with two loving parents who were well off financially. She had ONE terribly tragic event occur as an adult (yes, 19 is an adult) and she becomes a broken, damaged, walled off, emotionally stunted, chronic liar? Again, seriously?
P.S. Does anyone else find it incredibly weird that Marlowe calls season 6 "romantic," but there have been 4 episodes in a row with not even one tiny peck on the lips between Castle and Beckett? Will they ever hold hands, sneak a tiny kiss in the elevator, go to a nightclub under cover and slow dance together? We saw her hold hands with Josh, kiss Demming in the precinct, and dance with Detective Inspector Colin Hunt. We saw him get his shirt ripped off by Ellie Monroe and have wild rolling off the bed and knocking pictures off the wall sex with Meredith. But even during engagement, our madly in love couple don't even touch each other for 4 episodes and we nearly never see the kind of passion that we observed while they were with other people. I don't understand it.

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@ Balaji Sivaraman

I'm right there with you, he's a shadow of who he was in Flowers for Your Grave. He had the guts and artistic integrity to kill his own main character despite the opinions of his publisher and colleagues. He wasn't afraid to call Alexis's friend's parents when she got wasted at a party (modern Castle would have to apologize both to the friend and to Alexis). He pushed boundaries and got to the bottom of things without apology. He was (mostly) secure in who he was. Season 1 Rick Castle would never have flipped out about his girlfriend guarding a handsome, charming rich guy. The closer he's gotten to Beckett, the less in-command he's become. Sometime I'm afraid Nathan Fillion was right about the curse of Moonlighting rearing its ugly head...

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@ James

It's funny you should mention that scene where Castle calls Paige's parents, because I watched that exact same scene last week in Castle S2 re-run, and had the exact same thought. When Alexis says, "Paige'll get in so much trouble." Castle responds, "Less than she would if you'd have left her there. And the tone when he says, "Now!!!" There's a finality to it. That was a proper stamping of authority. It was even there when Castle screamed his lungs out to Beckett in the Season 4 Finale, about her rejecting his advances, about her holding out on him after having heard everything. That was also great to watch. Castle was in control. But from the moment Beckett fell into his arms at the end of Season 4, the writing's been way off. Both in terms of the Caskett relationship, and with Castle in general. As UKNo1StanaFan says, this show is about Beckett through Castle's eyes. Fair enough! But to show Castle as a one-dimensional character in every one of his relationships including to his bratty daughter is a step too far. Remember when Meredith says the reason she broke it off was because she didn't know anything about Castle. Where's that part of the relationship? Where's Beckett asking questions forcing Castle to reveal bits and pieces of his character? I probably sound like a whiner right now. I do enjoy the show and tune week-in and week-out. But these are things that've always irked me, and this season is making them more prominent.

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I agree that Castle was much more sure of himself & helpful in the earlier ep's than he has been shown in the last couple of years.Would like to see that again. Also, this is a romantic crime series which is what differentiates itself from other crime shows. Let's see some making out!! Witty banter was fun & the last seashell picture was cute though. All in all a good episode I thought.

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I'm back. Not seeing Becketts engagement ring on her finger still upsets me. I have arthritis in my knuckles,what is Kates excuse?

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Someday, I’d like an episode where someone besides Castle himself had to grow up and develop. Good episode overall, but everybody watching knew, from the start, he was going to be the one to yield and take the picture down (It was a sweet gesture in and of itself, but this is really getting repetitive). Also, can we toughen up Castle a little bit? He was so much cooler in the first season. They've played up his comic side so much that the suave, confident, devil-may-care attitude that made him so entertaining and watchable in the beginning has faded away. If we're supposed to believe him when he says he and Beckett are both alphas, he needs to start acting like one himself rather than letting everyone (Beckett, Alexis, Ryan and Espo every time he needs something not work-related) walk all over him. Love the show to death, but Castle needs to regrow his backbone.

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Someday, I’d like an episode where someone besides Castle himself had to grow up and develop. Good episode overall, but everybody watching knew from the beginning that he was going to be the one to yield and take the picture down (It was a sweet gesture in and of itself, but this is really getting repetitive). Also, can we toughen up Castle a little bit? He was so much cooler in the first season. They've played up his comic side at the expense of the suave, witty, devil-may-care attitude that made him so entertaining and watchable in the beginning. If we're supposed to believe what Castle said about both he and Beckett being alphas, he needs to start acting like one instead of letting everyone (Beckett, Alexis, Ryan and Espo every time he needs their help with something not work-related) walk all over him. Love the show to death, but Castle needs to regrow his backbone.

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@ James

Sorry about the double post, I resubmitted in error.

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Nottrampis. You commented some time ago, that Kate Beckett is more beautiful than Stana Katic. IMO, she certainly is this Season. I don't know if it is the clothes she wears or her hair style, but she is stunningly beautiful. PS: She is still mine!!!

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PS: Silly me, we are talking Marlowe here, where continuity and consistency in story telling is irrelevant!

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After the crap of the Alexis arc, this was a typically fun Castle episode, hopefully, we will not get one of these every three episodes! Whilst I am not too bothered about the lack of kisses, as long as there are good Caskett moments, it does seem odd, that a couple so much in love with each other, don't even try to sneek a kiss ever now and then, but the thing that is really bugging me, is the total absence of the engagement ring, it is accepted that it will not feature on her finger at work, but before, when it was her Mother's ring on her chain, we saw the chain and knew what was on it, why change now, after all, Kate is still wearing her Father's watch, and she wore both rings around her neck in DC, why not in NYC?

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I enjoyed this episode, especially the shoot-out with the clowns. (Although I seem to be in the minority about the clowns. I never understand why people think they're creepy.) I was kind of surprised, though, that they didn't come to the conclusion that the diamond was lab-made earlier. Not even Castle with his wild theories came up with that one.
Just one thing bugs me: Why all the obsession over not having a Caskett kiss? I think they're doing just fine at telling the relationship story without a kiss every episode.

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Loved the episode a lot!! I think Rick planned the last hug so Kate would set off the lion roar in his pocket when she pressed against his chest during the hug. Watch again...is that not one of his funny "smiles" as it goes off? Just a thought....

Castle Season 6 Episode 8 Quotes

Castle: You see, I'm honoring you by inviting you into my territory and Linus is part of that territory.
Beckett: And if you want to be invited into my territory again, you should probably rethink that.

Beckett: There's been a murder.
Castle: Yeah, of Linus' feelings.

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