There have been a few Esposito-centric storylines throughout the run of Castle, but Castle Season 8 Episode 16 was the first one I truly enjoyed from beginning to end.
It really was a “Heartbreaker.”
Espo and Sonia had amazing chemistry. In just their few scenes, I found myself rooting for these two even though I knew it could never work. Javier is too good of a cop to maintain a serious relationship with a criminal, and that’s what Sonia was.
I do believe she had a good heart, but she consistently made bad choices, as Espo pointed out in this Castle quote…
I know that you had a tough go when you were little but sooner or later you've got to stop blaming your childhood. At some point, when you choose wrong over right that's on you.Esposito
It was telling that Esposito never told his family that Sonia was sent to prison and took the blame for their failed relationship. Was that because he didn’t want to look the fool or that he felt guilty for arresting the woman he loved? I’m not quite sure; maybe a little of both.
I never doubted that he loved her or that she loved him in her own way. He may have been tempted, but if Sonia thought that Javier Esposito could run off like a criminal with her, she never really knew him at all.
One of the highlights of this installment was that Ryan had Epso’s back every step of the way. After a horribly bad start to Castle season 8, this reminded us what we’ve always known – that these two are partners until the wheels fall off.
Even in the aftermath, Ryan was there for Javi…
Ryan: I just called in sick. Let's go get really drunk.
Esposito: Damn straight.
I also loved that we got a glimpse into Espo’s family and that Ryan has obviously spent a lot of time with them. I wish we got more scenes like that on a regular basis.
If the show writers had to give us more non-Casketty episodes this season because of scheduling conflicts, then I wish they had been more like this one where they focused on characters we love instead of forcing us to watch newcomers we don’t care about in convoluted storylines we wish would end.
Back at the 12th, Beckett was smart enough to admit she’s made similarly bad choices when she’s gotten too close to a case, but as Captain she had to suspend Esposito. Espo didn’t seem to have a problem with that. He’s adult enough to realize there would be consequences to his actions.
The episode also had some funny moments along the way:
- Ryan saving Castle from himself by putting his hand over his mouth before he could make a comment.
- Castle and Ryan’s simultaneous “Don’t tell Beckett!”
- "Turns out that Chicken, Chicken, Chicken is bankrupt, bankrupt, bankrupt."
- "Contrary to what you three have led me to believe, those women’s prisons are nothing like the late night skinamax movies."
On the downside, how could Martha and Alexis not ask any questions about Beckett moving back home? I get that they’re just happy to have her there, but she’s been gone for months. I simply can’t imagine Alexis and Martha not peppering Castle and Beckett with some questions. Some will say it isn’t their place, but it feels out of character to have them say nothing about this separation.
Of course, as a fan, I’m more than happy to forget it ever happened because it never should have. It was the worst storyline in Castle history and wasted most of the season. Also, even the mere mention of Vikram’s name made me cringe.
My only other complaint was the boob joke at the end. I’m sure some will find it funny, but it fell flat for me, as I expect smarter humor from Castle.
Let’s hope this is the last we see and hear from Lucy/Linus because I was over this gag months ago. I think the concept had potential for fun, but it never quite lived up to it.
Thankfully the Castle and Beckett separation is finally over, and I hope we can all move on to some wonderful Castle fun moving forward.
If you can't wait for more, you can always watch Castle online here at TV Fanatic.
C. Orlando is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow her on Twitter.