Castle: Watershed

Well, that went quickly – here we are again at the end of another season of Castle. “Watershed” was a quieter season finale than many of the previous ones have been, and in some ways didn’t really feel like a finale, but that’s not to say that plenty didn’t happen. Let’s go through the case of the week stuff quickly and then move on to the character stuff.

Our victim of the week is found in the water tank of a rundown residential hotel – and she’s found because people’s showers start running red with blood, so thanks, Castle, I guess I’m never showering again. Most of her neighbors think she was a prostitute, but she turns out to be Harvard honor student Erika Albrook, whose parents think she’s backpacking in Europe. She was using a CD of sex sounds to make her neighbors think she was a prostitute while she used the relatively anonymous location and free wifi to hack into fancy boutique law firm Banks and Bauer. And payphone records suggest a connection between Albrook and former Banks and Bauer employee Ian Blaylock, who the team finds dead in his home. He made an appointment to meet with Albrook, but that was after he was murdered, so his killer presumably killed her too.

Finally, the team finds the string that ties this all together: Albrook’s high school friend Pamela Bonner had been an intern at the law firm and was killed in a car crash on her way home from their summer party the year before, but Albrook insisted that her friend would never drive drunk or in heels, so was trying to find out what really happened. Once they find Albrook’s laptop, they use the records she hacked into to trace a call to Blaylock from Colin Rigsdale III, scion of a political family, and eventually piece together that it was a Chappaquiddick situation – Rigsdale had been driving but knew the accident and Bonner’s death would hurt his political chances, so he made it look like she was driving and fled the scene. His brother Martin Tillage, the black sheep of the family, killed Blaylock and Albrook for him when it looked like the truth was going to be revealed.

On the home front, Castle is agonizing over cover designs for Deadly Heat, perhaps to distract himself from Alexis’s summer plans – he’s delaying sending in the check to pay for her study trip to Costa Rica because he’s worried about letting her go so far away. I was glad that they brought up this reference to Alexis’s kidnapping earlier this season, because that’s certainly something that would have lingering effects on both Alexis and Castle. But Alexis points out that she has to live and not let fear win, so she eventually wins this one. Ryan and Esposito spend most of the episode trying to figure out what the heck is going on with Beckett and Castle, but they do have a nice moment when Ryan tells Esposito about Jenny’s pregnancy.

So. Beckett secretly flies to DC to interview for the task force job, and when she gets back, at least Castle and Esposito can tell that something’s going on, but don’t know what. The Deputy Director of the FBI calls Gates, who gives Beckett her recommendation and encourages Beckett to take the job. “With any luck, this could be your last case.” Beckett is worried that a career move would mess up her somewhat undefined relationship with Castle, and talks to Lanie, which was a nice touch – I like their friendship. Before she can bring it up to Castle, though, her boarding pass falls out of her coat pocket and he sees it. He’s hurt and angry that she would be considering such a huge life change without even mentioning it to him. “Now what does that say about us? Not much, if you ask me.” He talks to his mom about it, and Martha suggests that he’s been holding back with Beckett because on some level he doesn’t really believe the relationship will work.

Beckett does get offered the job, and she talks to her dad about it, which I really liked – and he says her mother would have been proud. Aww. Beckett brings up her insecurities about Castle: “I don’t know what we have. I don’t know if it’s real.” Jim points out that she always ends her relationships and hides in her work when she gets scared, but Beckett insists that the job is what she really wants. During her interrogation of Tillage, she’s clearly thinking about this part of her career possibly coming to an end: “This room has been my life, my home, and I will not let you sit there and lie to me in my own home.” And Castle’s doing some thinking, too. As he tells Alexis: “There comes a point in our lives when we have to stop fooling ourselves into thinking life’s going to be the way we want it to be. Start seeing things for how they really are.”

Castle and Beckett agree that they should talk, and meet on “their” swings. Awww. She apologizes for keeping secrets from him, but he bluntly says that that’s just who she is. And he announces that he’s decided he wants more – that they both deserve more than their current undefined relationship. Beckett obviously thinks he’s breaking up with her, but instead, he proposes. She just looks stunned, and her reaction to this proposal is our cliffhanger for the season.

Honestly, I haven’t figured out yet exactly how I feel about these developments. And I know I have concerns about the possibilities this is setting up for next season. But I’m going to think about this a little more, so meet me back here in a day or two for another post all about the relationship and the proposal.

In the meantime, what did you you all think?

(And yes, in case anyone didn’t see the news on Friday: Castle was finally officially renewed for a sixth season. The ABC fall schedule will be out in a matter of hours, so come back later in the day to find out if Castle is staying in its current timeslot.)

(Image courtesy of ABC.)

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