Devika Syal ‘18 / Emertainment Monthly Staff Writer
This week’s episode of Castle was a heart-wrenching and shocking hour of television that kept viewers at the edge of their seats throughout the entire thing.
Straying far from the lighthearted, silly storylines of the past few episodes, this week’s Castle featured a very real and very scary plot in which a young activist, Jared Stone, holds a group of people hostage in a New York subway car with a gun in one hand and the detonator to a pack of bombs strapped to his chest in the other.
Among the hostages was Javier Esposito (Jon Huertas), who had been investigating Stone as part of a murder investigation. The episode was very Javi-centric, and focused a lot on his on again off again relationship with the precinct’s doctor and body examiner, Lanie (Tamala Jones). At the beginning of the episode, he mentioned his fears about the relationship to his partner Kevin Ryan (Seamus Dever), such as if it would last and if Lanie would ever want settle down and have children with him. Using this as the underlying basis of the episode, the two characters used the events that played out through to help them realize their true feelings for one another.
One especially moving moment that illustrated this happened at the end of the episode. Esposito was not the only cop in the subway car dealing with the situation; there was another female cop who he worked alongside. At the end of the episode, when everything has been solved, they had a brief conversation. For a brief moment, there was a worry that in the heat of the moment, the two cops would develop feelings for one another, or that she would make a move on him. However, it took a turn for the better when she informed the audience that in the few seconds before Esposito was about to risk his life to apprehend the criminal, he was whispering Lanie’s name over and over. Even she played a part in helping him realize how important the relationship is.
The episode mirrored one from last season, when Ryan and Esposito were trapped in the basement of a burning building and had to face the prospect of dying there alone. During that episode, Ryan’s wife was about to give birth to their daughter, making the focus the importance of their relationship. This week put Esposito and Lanie in similar situation.
While Lanie and Esposito’s relationship was the central focus of the episode, there were smaller moments that showed just how much the other members of the precinct cared about and worried about Esposito’s safety. First and foremost was Ryan, who carried a lot of guilt regarding Esposito’s current predicament because he was with him but let him go underground to chase the suspect alone. As mentioned, he had been in situations where he would die with his best friend, but could not bear the thought of Esposito dying alone.
Then there was Beckett (Stana Katic), who when asked what Esposito’s favorite pizza toppings were, was able to recite them from memory. But the best part was that although every one of Esposito’s friends were worried about him, they all had faith that he would get everybody out of that subway car alive. Instead of attempting to send a rescue effort to him, they worked alongside him to save everyone because they knew he could do it.
Aside from the emotional and personal side of the episode, the storyline itself was intriguing because it kept twisting to lead to something worse. Starting with a man holding people hostage on a train with a gun, it led to him being a suicide bomber, ultimately ending with the revelation that he was also carrying a deadly virus that could have potentially spread to his hostages. The only problem with the episode is that it spent so much time stretching out the suspense on the train then tried to end the episode with another plot twist. The actual criminal was a newly introduced character in the last few minutes of the episode, and her motive was unclear.
However, while this is a crime show, the importance obviously lay with Esposito, his relationship, and his character development. This was definitely a memorable and meaningful episode.
Overall Episode Grade: A+