This week’s episode of Castle, “Secret’s Safe With Me,” could have just as easily be called “Everybody needs their stuff,” because everybody keeps saying that – and also demonstrating how you can learn a lot about a person from his or her belongings.
The victim of the week is Philadelphia waitress Wendy Dupree, found shot dead in New York, where she’d traveled for a storage unit auction of the sort seen on shows like Storage Wars. She wrote the number of the storage unit she wanted in her blood as she was dying. Beckett doesn’t have time to get a court order to stop the auction, so Castle (with an assist from an auction-going who gives him $1600 cash in return for a $2000 check and a character named after his mom) wins it himself. (Castle: “You are so going to owe me for this.” Beckett: “Castle, I don’t know if the department’s going to be able to reimburse you for all of this.” Castle: “That’s not the owing I mean.” Heh.) Once they look at the stuff, it’s not immediately obvious what’s important, and the unit was rented under a fake name.
It turns out that the contents of the storage unit actually belonged to Wendy’s twin Wendell, who was killed by a subway train six months earlier – and Wendy didn’t think it was an accident. Wendell had worked as a chauffeur for socialite Anjelica Henley, who tells Castle and Beckett that Wendell was suspected but cleared in the theft of her diamond bracelet in a break-in shortly before his death. They can’t find the bracelet in the storage unit, and it turns out that the break-in was real but Henley faked the theft of the bracelet in order to get the insurance money. Castle realizes that whatever is hidden in the storage unit is inside a “Gemini” (meaning “twin”) doll, and when he smashes the doll he finds a USB drive of crime scene photos and a glass eye. Wendell in fact broke in to his employer’s house to steal a glass eye to compare to the one left at the scene of his parents’ fatal car crash years before – because if the hit-and-run driver who left the glass eye had called for medical help, the twins’ parents probably wouldn’t have died. And the owner of the glass eye? As Castle says: “I’ve worked a lot of murder cases waiting for the day I could unequivocally exclaim ‘The butler did it!’” Indeed, Henley’s butler confesses to the murders and the hit-and-run.
Most of the team doesn’t have too much to do this week beyond the routine case stuff – but it’s Gates‘s turn for the spotlight. It turns out that the “Gemini” doll hiding the evidence – the one everyone else thinks is creepy – is part of a line she’s collected since childhood, and when Castle offers her the doll, her attitude toward him completely turns. She even announces that she read and loved Frozen Heat and has ordered the rest of the series. But, of course, Castle ends up breaking the dolls – and breaking one of Gates’s own dolls in the process – so by the end of the episode we’re back to the frosty status quo.
The Castle family is back this week, just in time for Alexis to head to college. Castle tries to convince her that she can’t actually take all her belongings, but Martha and Beckett both echo the “Everybody needs their stuff” theme. Martha, it turns out, has known about Castle and Beckett all along and makes him tell Alexis, but she’s so preoccupied with starting college that she barely reacts. When she cancels her big night-before-college dinner with her dad, he worries that she feels threatened by Beckett, but she’s actually just nervous about leaving home. Alexis: “How can you be so smart and so clueless at the same time?” Castle: “Practice?” Heh. Alexis says “No matter what, I’d wake up and you’d be there. And I’d know that everything’s fine,” but when she wakes up at school, her dad won’t be there. Castle: “Well, everything is going to be fine. And you are going to be fine.” He checks under her new dorm bed for monsters one last time, and they’re both crying, and Martha is in the hallway crying, and I’m crying, and there are just TEARS EVERYWHERE. But never fear: Martha assures Castle that she will keep living with him so he is never ever alone. I’m sure his new girlfriend appreciates that, Martha.
Castle and Beckett are still trying to keep their relationship a secret at work, and Beckett’s worried that Alexis will tell Lanie, who will tell Esposito – does this mean Lanie and Esposito are officially back together? I forget. Anyway, there was one moment that stood out to me as a sign of how strong a couple Castle and Beckett are already: at the auction, Beckett takes Castle’s checkbook from his pocket and he automatically signs a blank check for her, no questions asked. Bet he wouldn’t do that for any of the “hundreds of beautiful girlfriends” in his past. And when he’s leaving the precinct for the night, he whispers that he wishes he could kiss her, and instead shakes her hand while narrating a dramatic kiss. Aww, writer boy.
The “stuff” theme comes up here as well, as Castle answers Beckett’s desk phone (bad boy!) and then opens a drawer to find a pen and instead finds a little figure of a man made out of twigs and twine. She’s upset about the invasion of privacy, but he tries to guess where it came from – an old boyfriend, her first crime scene, etc. By the end of the episode, Castle says he will stop guessing because he now understands that he has no right to pry – and so Beckett tells him. After her mother’s funeral, she and her dad ditched the reception and went to Coney Island, where they walked on the beach and made the stick man out of things that had washed up on shore. Castle: “Does that make that day a bad memory or a good one?” Beckett: “Both. He’s a reminder that even on the worst days there’s a possibility for joy.” She’s come so far, really, and I love the way that the two of them are growing and changing together.
Next episode: Romantic getaway to the Hamptons! Except, you know, with murder.
(Image courtesy of ABC.)