**SPOILER WARNING!**The Season 5 finale was a humdinger and totally pulled the rug out from under me. Man, did I not see this ending coming. It hit me like a Rocky Balboa right-cross to my skull that placed my dazed and confused arse right on the mat. Staggering to my feet and using the ropes (or in this case my couch), I put my gloves back up and to prove that I can take more. That I could go the distance one last time before the summer hiatus. I will say this: It did not look like the Castle gang was going to be coming back this Fall and I was on edge for the full hour of the Season 5 Finale. I had exhausted all inside sources at ABC and anyone I knew that worked, interned or ever did anything for Disney. I came up empty with absolutely no new intel. So, obviously I was bummed. If this was to be the last primetime Castle, it better be one terrific swan song…
The episode starts off simple enough with your run of the mill NYC murder of a young college co-ed that wound up on the wrong side of the tracks. Considering she had a Harvard degree to her name, what exactly was this girl doing in a sleazy motel for transients and foreigners? Seriously, she had the cash to stay at the Plaza or stay her Aunt’s in Midtown (I wish I had an Aunt in Midtown).
So, I was puzzled and thought maybe this could be a random murder due to where this chick was located in the city. Castle, Lanie, Espo and Ryan are all at the scene. But guess who’s late? Oh, Beckett. You have some explaining to do. Like why were you down in D.C. for an interview for a federal job (thanks to a run in with Agent Stack in last week’s show). It was clear that the guest spotting fed was impressed with Beckett and you just knew that he was going to recommend her, especially considering he himself came from a homicide background.
Kate aces the interview in D.C. and does not think much of it until she has to explain it to her dad, the guys at the 12th and of course Castle who fears change like I fear public restrooms. At the crime scene, Beckett does not divulge why she was late or anything and things seem to be business as usual. When they discover that the victim had hid a laptop in the laundry room of the slum-like building, they get a lead that takes them to a prominent law firm with some top tier clients. This is the kind of law firm that caters to people that do not get in legal entanglements because of the size of their bank accounts.
As the plot thickens, even Castle points out that it sounds like something out of a Grisham novel, which I had already written down in my notes. It indeed proves to be an intriguing murder that includes a prominent up-and-coming political candidate. It very much reminded me of the DePalma film Blow Out or at least Ted Kennedy’s real-life account at Chappaquiddick. If you do not know what Chappaquiddick is, shame on you.
However, the murder is clearly just the window dressing for a much bigger picture of what is going on in the life of our favorite crime fighting duo. Ryan and Esposito are totally competent investigators, so I always feel that if Becks cannot commit 100 percent to a case, it is left in capable hands.
When Captain Victoria “Iron” Gates calls Beckett into her office, I feared that Kate was going to get a comeuppance for flying down to D.C. for a new job. Instead, I was thrown a curveball when Gates tells Beckett that the new job is what she is meant to do. Taken aback by this news, Kate is willing to take advice from anyone that knows her situation. Gates is gushing at how perfect Beckett is for the new gig and that she only wishes that she had that kind of opportunity at her age. I very much like the character arc that they have set up for Gates. She has gone from “Iron Gates” to be a big softie. She knows about Castle and Beckett’s relationship and encouraged them to have a PDA after the bomb incident a few weeks back. I dig that they have let her in to their little club. She’s no Roy Montgomery, but she will do and I flat out like her.
While Espo and Ryan are doing a sweep at the motel, they do their usual banter perfectly and discuss just why Beckett is acting so hinky. Ryan thinks that Beckett may be pregnant, but Esposito puts the immediate kibosh on that theory. Suddenly, out of nowhere, Ryan tells Esposito that he better get used to pregnancy talk because he and Jenny are expecting their own bundle of joy. It was a nice moment and these are small little slices of life that make Castle one of the most likable shows on TV.
Back at Beckett’s apartment, Castle stumbles upon a boarding pass out her jacket and the jig is officially up. When Rick questions Kate on just what the hell is going on, he gets somewhat of a runaround from her. Castle does not do evasive maneuvers well and he is devastated that Kate would not tell him about such a big job opportunity that is outside of New York. In a huff, Castle leaves to get advice from none other than Martha, the one-woman show still looking for an audience. In my opinion, the worst thing you can do in this type of situation is give “tough love,” but that is the approach that Martha takes. Castle does just not understand how she could not tell him about such a huge thing. Martha questions whether Rick really thinks that the relationship is going to work out. I thought that Martha’s description of Kate’s obsession about her job was spot on, but that lacing into Rick was not what he needed. However, this is what moms are supposed to do: Tell you the truth when you need it the most.
When Kate gets a call from D.C. that she got the job, they cut away to a commercial for us to soak this information in. Kate meets with her dad for some paternal advice. She confides in the old man that she is lost at her two possible futures and what her choice would mean to her life…to CASKETT’S LIFE. Kate then says will be her last case!
She goes back to the interrogation and falls into her rhythm and breaks what could be her last New York crime. After doing what she does best, she takes a walk around the precinct and evades Espo and Ryan by saying that she does have something to tell them, but that she has to tell Castle first. Beckett meets Castle at the same swing-set that they met at after a sniper put a round through her chest. As they sit opposite on the swings, a grim moment falls to the ground like a thud when Castle says he wants more out of this relationship. While Rick explains what he wants, we get blindsided when Castle falls to one knee and says, “Katherine Houghton Beckett, will you marry me?”
Now that’s a finale DoG-ers! Can’t wait till Season 6.