MONDAY MUSINGS: Down to the Wire

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As I sit here awaiting the pre- ultimate episode of the season/series, I find myself less than enthused for the show. To me Castle has become a shell if itself, a caricature but totally not funny. I would have expected the story arc to develop towards wrapping up the LokSat mess. Instead we got a Shakespearian murder and the anti- Christ further encouraging Castle’s warped imagination.

Looking back to the last seven seasons, each to me, looked to progress to the season final coaxing us to keep us coming back. Here is my evaluation:

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Season 1 episodes 8-10
In the shortened premier season, the relationships were still being built. Ep 8 we had the two card games, first Castle, a sure winner chooses not to show up Beckett and folds as her co-workers hoot and holler. Later, Castle invites Beckett to the mucky-muck game where she returns the favor. Great character building leading into ep 9 where her old beau returns to work a kidnapping. Here Beckett ponders,through her interactions with Sorenson, what she feels about Castle. It filters into ep10 where she knows her future is not with Sorenson but with the 12th and a partnership with Castle

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Season 2 episodes 21-24
This proved to be a remarkable 4 episode arc. We are introduced to Tom Demming who meets Beckett in the sparring den initially then later they try to kick each other’s arses in a bout full of sexual tension. Demming asks her out and the are together in the next episode complete with a dine-in Chinese at the precinct due to work. Castle not liking these developments (even if self inflicted), escorts Kate’s friend to dinner. Madison makes Kate think if she really wants Castle and if so she did not want to repeat their high school issues. Next episode ratcheted up the competition between Castle and Demming in a truly fun case. It also shows Beckett and Demming are dating (Becking?) and kissing in the break room and sharing cab rides.  But Beckett still thinks highly of her partnership with Rickie. Ep24, Kate is truly torn, as both men invite her away. Castle denied Demming’s accepted. Castle knows he lost but really it is Kate who loses as after Espo talks sense into her, she dumps Tom for Rick just to be left hanging!

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SEASON 3 episodes 22-24
As this season winded down, we get the awesome episode of Kate tracking Royce’s killer to LA as Castle worms his way in. A truly outstanding episode where Kate deeply considers her feelings for Castle, there are three great scenes where we think they may actually connect (Josh who?) They return home much closer to each other. Next show looked to be a throwaway, a beauty pageant murder, but woven in was a nicely disguised drama where Alexis and Ashley would try a long distance relationship. But when Beckett and Castle talk about the odds, she really meant them. Funny how initially she said Alexis is smart for not trying them then giving kudos for giving it a shot. The season ender needs no further detail, a magnificent show with all the emotional highs and lows slowly building up to Caskett.

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Season 4. Episodes 19-23
This really was a 5 story arc to wind up the season. 47 Seconds Castle found out Beckett heard he said “I love You” and was crushed by the deception. He runs with a stewardess as a release while Kate goes to an embassy ball looking marvelous, leaving Castle stunned. She decided to accept a drink from Agent Hunt but her heart was not into it. Next show, Castle still upset, runs with Slaughter, initially Beckett tries to make nice, still not knowing what happened to cause Castle to freak out. Later, she bails him out against her better judgement saying that is what partners do. It shows she has not given up on them. Zombies delivered the prologue to the finale as Castle intimates this is his last case. Later, upon discovery that the “killer” may never remember, there was that great exchange where Beckett actually acknowledged she heard everything when she was shot and elected to reveal she went to counseling. And what can we say about the finale? But the episodes prior built to a great finale!

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Season 5 episodes 21-24
This wind down of the season has Beckett assigned to the richest man in the world. This comes after Castle chose (really?) to play a video game over the temptings of sultry Kate. She is forced to say she is with Castle but clearly the relationship is not defined, just there so to speak. With that in mind, the next installment, Kate faces mortality as she is standing on a bomb. Castle proves his love by staying with her, even returning after promising to leave her to her doom. Now she must know how much he loves her. In a misstep the next episode Kate gets the offer to interview with the FBI and at the end she questions Castle on their status. When Castle stumbles for an answer she is back questioning, leading to the finale where Kate is scrambling after her interview with the Bureau. Castle finds her plane tickets and needs time to think about their status. And we know where that lead!

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Season 6 21-23
This really is only a two episode arc for all intent and purpose. Ep21 the takeaway is Beckett is Castle’s equal in everything. Beating him in scrabble twice and teaching winning isn’t everything especially in strip poker. Veritas really put us through the emotional wringer bringing Beckett closure (or so we thought) to her mom’s murder just in time for her own wedding. The finale took us in roller coaster ride as it turns out Beckett had been married before. She no longer has the moral high ground where divorce is concerned. So we got everything tied up in a neat package before that ending.

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Season 7 21-23
Here the episodes leading to the finale did not make sense, much like the current season. They explained (poorly) Rick’s missing time, albeit only 2 weeks of it. Then had two episodes that did nothing to build to what then was believed to be the series end. And that would have been an excellent ending to the Caskett love story. Rick honored at the highest level by his writer peers, Kate simply gorgeous, perfectly happy as the total woman, great cop with career options, loving wife, open to what the future will bring. The way most of us will remember this great show.

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So there ya have it. Unless we have Alan Masters sharing his abilities with Beckett or that Shakespeare is more gifted than Castle and can re-write their ending, something Castle could not do in season 3. Possibly the demons of the newest episode will take down LokSat allowing Caskett to escape. The episodes leading into this ending have given us nothing to latch onto, But we can hope still!

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