This is one of those great NYC-based episodes where the city breathes. New York City is my favorite non-character on the show. Its autumn-based exteriors make you feel the crisp breeze hitting your neck after an 8 to 9 hour day trapped inside cement walls at your dime a dozen salaried job. Sorry I drifted there! Castle is New York. It exudes the speedy walk fast, talk fast tempo that is New York City. And from this die-hard Castle-ite, there is no place better for a murder than the city that was so nice they named it twice. Besides that, this episode has it all: international intrigue, high-end power brokers, blood diamonds and a ghost fixer Barrett Hawk (played brilliantly by Banshee character actor Anthony Ruivivar) that can make anyone disappear— Castle at its finest.
After missing a high power speaking engagement, relationship expert Alice Clark is found dead and it is clearly a professional hit. Nothing taken, but her car ripped to shreds by someone looking for something. Her cash, cards and iPad all left alone. Hmmm. Curious that an A-lister that has a billionaire’s ear would just off herself when things are going so well. That being said, the setup of the arc had me intrigued and I was invested in the episode.
When Alice’s apartment turns up nothing and a lead with a mogul goes awry, Caskett get a tip that Alice had been holed up in one of said mogul’s hotel room for a few days. But upon complete examination of the room, nothing turns up. In fact it doesn’t look like anyone was even staying at the posh hotel. But someone was using the digital safe that housed a $60 million dollar fist sized diamond.
Too good to be true right? How about $60 million being chump change compared to what the diamond—the man-made diamond really is! Through a shell game of who’s done what and to whom, it is revealed that the process to make a man-made diamond, a technique that nails the 4 “C’s” of what makes a diamond a such a precious stone, has been perfected. If word got out that the tech to man-make perfect diamonds existed it would make for a wildly bloody conflict in all of the diamond mining areas and the value of stones worldwide. It is a very interesting and nefarious plot line that stands as one of the best episodes in the Castle canon this season or any other.
The breadcrumbs left behind for us to follow are simply delicious as we are given little tidbits until the final frame when we devour the ending. The ending that frankly was right under our nose to begin with and yet I again failed to spot. Damn you Kruse! Get your game together!! My less than James Patterson-ish ability to spot a crime aside, I was impressed with this new episode. It did an excellent job of facilitating all of the primary cast save for Molly Quinn/Alexis, who I think we have had enough of for a while, and the wonderful Susan Sullivan as “Mother/Gram” that can steal an entire episode with one line. Those relationships with his gals are important no doubt but it is Rick’s family at the 12th that we need to focus on. His family is a nice distraction when it is present, like last week. Even Chief Victoria “Iron” Gates (Penny Johnson Jerald) gets some solid screen time in the high profile case.
The narrative lifts itself above any minor flaws that I turn a blind eye to in one hour dramas. It itself achieves the proverbial 4 “C’s” of one hour dramas. Unfortunately I couldn’t come up with four consecutive words that start with “C” and relate the world of TV drama. I worked on it as long as I thought responsible but came up with bupkus. Still, I love the world of Castleand it is never more present than in “A Murder is Forever.”