Devika Syal ‘18 / Emertainment Monthly Staff Writer
It was the end of an era for Castle this Monday night. The second half of this two-part episode resulted in the characters finally saying goodbye to 3XK after years of chasing him or being played at his hand.
The episode began right where the last one ended. Castle (Nathan Fillion) realizes that something might have happened to Beckett (Stana Katic), so he, Ryan (Seamus Dever), and Esposito (Jon Huertas) rush to where she said she was going, only to find her abandoned car with the words “help her” written on the glass. From there, the episode kicks into high gear as the members of the 12th precinct rush to save Beckett.
This episode and the one before it are two that deserve to be watched fully through, since no recap could do them justice. Like last week, it seemed that so much and so little happened, mainly because there was a lot of action paired with a lot of suspense. However, it did end in a victory as Castle finally figures out how to get into Tyson’s mind by letting him think that he had control all along. The episode ends in an extreme criss cross. When Tyson thinks he’s tricked Castle into following his plan when Castle has all along been leading Tyson through his own little game, all with the help of Ryan and Esposito.
The way Dever, and Huertas played their characters in this episode deserves to be commended. The facial expressions seen on Dever and Huertas throughout the episode should be enough to win them awards. Not only did they bring a completely different level to their characters, but they also emphasized their characters relationships between each other, Beckett, and Castle. Huertas channelled into Esposito a one man detective machine, shouting out orders to everyone and anyone who could hear him in an attempt to get closer to finding Beckett. Dever was on a completely different level as Ryan. He acts as Castle’s rational side throughout the episode, after having shared an experience with him regarding Tyson. Ryan has a lot of guilt for letting Tyson go in the past, yet he channels that rage into something productive by trying to control Castle. Two moving scenes in the episode consist of Ryan holding Castle back from doing anything that could possibly affect the investigation.
Castle does end up doing something stupid, but of course it helps him in the end. Since there have been so many episodes consisting of Beckett being in trouble and the precinct rushing to help, this one at first didn’t seem any different. This is especially true in the case of Castle’s worry for her. It’s easy to forget, however, that Castle and Beckett are married now. They’re a family and their bond is much stronger. Therefore, this warranted a much harsher reaction to the goings-on from Castle than previous episodes showed. Fillion channels a ruthless, takes-no-nonsense Rick in one particular scene, when he barges into Tyson’s–still posing as Michael Boudreaux–apartment, beats him up, then holds him at gunpoint, uttering the same line over and over again: “Where is she.” This results in Tyson pressing charges against Castle. However, at the end of the episode it is revealed that Castle’s only punishment is 1,000 hours of community service–surprise, surprise!–at the 12th precinct. So Castle’s back where he belongs!
The news is delivered by Captain Gates (Penny Johnson Jerald), whose relationship with Castle improves tenfold in this episode. Not only does she welcome him back and get a big hug in return, but there is a scene after Castle is held in custody for attacking Tyson where she uncuffs him and they have a heart to heart about how to effectively find Beckett. Another small yet important moment is when Beckett, Castle, Ryan, and Esposito return to the precinct after killing Tyson and Nieman. While the rest of the precinct stands and applauds Beckett, Lanie (Tamala Jones) breaks the silence and runs into Beckett’s arms. Acting only as a best friend should, this small moment meant so much to viewers.
The acting by every character in this episode was beyond expectations. Yet,the best part about any episode that involves Beckett in danger is that she always finds a way to help herself. Katic consistently portrays a Beckett that should act as a role model to anybody who watches her. She’s intelligent, rational, loving, and tough as nails all in one. This episode was no different. Although Beckett made very few appearances during “Reckoning”–two of which were simply voice recordings–she managed to steal the episode. Fans will never forget the image of Beckett, back to the camera, standing over Dr. Kelly Nieman’s dead body with a bloody surgical knife in her hand. The panic-mixed-with-rationality that Beckett showed as she feverishly unscrewed the bottom of the gurney she was attached to and scratched through the velcro straps holding her down until her own fingers were bloody made the audience feel as desperate to escape the hold yet confident that they would do so. After seasons upon seasons of Castle, it has been proven that there is nothing Kate Beckett cannot do.
No matter how strong she may be, Beckett and the rest of the characters definitely deserve a break after what they’ve been through. Next week’s episode features them solving a mystery on Mars, which should bring back the silly, nerdy vibe of the show. Stay tuned, Castle fans!
Overall Episode Grade: A+