'Castle' Preview: Taxis, Syrians and Bolt Cutters
'Castle' Preview: Taxis, Syrians and Bolt Cutters
Laurel Brown
Laurel Brown
Senior Writer, BuddyTV
Is it just me, or has Castle been getting darker recently? The heartbreak of Beckett's mother's murder was revisited, and then Castle had to deal with an old friend who turned out to be a killer. The fun is still there, but a dark cloud has been hanging over the show so far in 2011.

Things get even darker this week.

This new episode, "Setup," starts up the dark right away. Before we even know what's happening, Castle gets herded into a freaky ET-style tent by men in radiation suits. Beckett's waiting at the end of the tunnel, but all other explanation needs to wait until the second half of the episode. The tension is set.

The tension is a good thing too, because "Setup" is, for the most part, just that: a setup for future action. The case begins like any other, with a cab driver found murdered in what appears to be a basic carjacking and robbery.

Castle and the detectives go through the motions of tracking down leads and identifying suspects, all the while building a case that gets more and more complicated. Within the first 20 minutes, we've moved from a simple robbery to hidden cameras to inexplicable cash to creepy storage units.

Nothing is what it seems. And then Homeland Security gets involved. This is very much not a typical Castle case.

Plot Points to Watch For:
  • We finally get another glimpse at Beckett's motorcycle-riding-hero-doctor boyfriend. Briefly. And it turns out that Beckett hasn't been seeing much more of him than the rest of us.
  • There may be a Firefly shout-out from Martha in this one. That or we're just dealing with a fortuitously-named spiritual retreat.
  • Castle has a thing for bolt cutters.

The "Setup" episode of Castle is dark, definitely. But it's a fun sort of dark and definitely a wild ride through high tension. It's only a bonus that the episode -- officially the first installment of a two-parter -- ends on an excellent cliffhanger. But it's going to be a long, dark week waiting for the end.

Are you looking forward to "Setup?" Do you like the darker-toned Castle episodes, or do you prefer the show to be light and fun? Leave us a comment with your opinions!

(Image courtesy of ABC)