This week on Castle
the boys go to Atlantic City but don't get to see Carrot Top, Beckett almost bonds with Captain Gates and Alexis accidentally throws a raging party.
After last week's intense, fantastic and emotional episode this week is a lighter, more screwball outing. It also breaks up our favorite crime fighting couple, sending Castle off for some bachelor bonding while Beckett holds down the office with Gates. If you think this means that Gates opened up and the two made each other friendship bracelets, you would be wrong. Gates was just as tough, fact-driven and hard on Castle's contributions as ever. At least by episode's end she seemed to be lightening up a bit, even turning a blind eye to the boys spending some extra bachelor party time in Atlantic City.
The guys, meanwhile, cracked open the case with the help of Beckett, some good old fashion detective work and a few convenient Elvis costumes. Viva Atlantic City!
Party by Facebook
You know how there are all these stories now of teenagers amassing huge amounts of people to parties because some idiot puts the party up on Facebook or Twitter? Well that is Alexis' entire storyline this episode, and it's pretty hilarious.
What Alexis intends as a post-breakup movie night with her friends turns into a huge raging party after she tries to invite a cute, dumb jock. This anti-Ashley named Brian seems to find speaking in whole sentences very difficult, but on the plus side he agrees with me that Alexis has really killer hair.
Unfortunately, some barely-liked kid in her class has posted on his Facebook about Alexis having a party and before you can say 'teen show clichÃ©' the whole place is crawling with teenagers who have never used blenders before. Alexis freaks and kicks everyone out, then runs around the apartment gluing things back together and dragging garbage bags into closets. Thankfully, when Castle returns he's too hung over to notice much awry.
The House Always Wins
The case of the episode is the murder of Sam Siegel, owner of Atlantic City casino The Sapphire. This of course means that Castle and the boys need to recite Kenny Rodgers 'The Gambler' like sad, spoken word poetry. Lanie is not amused by this, mostly because she and Esposito are still barely on speaking terms after their breakup. Esposito says that the breakup was mutual but is this really the last we've seen of that pairing? It would be a shame to break them up so soon, so I'm hoping this is merely a roadblock.
With the victim of the episode being a casino owner, the guys are all too eager to head down to Atlantic City to solve the case and maybe fit in some debauchery while they're at it. "The one guy in this car that's not a real cop isn't allowed to call shotgun," Ryan complains when Castle gets the best road trip seat.
Ryan, however, is being very cagey about the best man situation at his wedding. Esposito assumed he'd be donning that particular tux but it turns out best man will be Jenny's teenaged half-brother instead. So they hope to fit in some best man activities while at Atlantic City, much to Ryan's apparent fear.
Beckett is back in New York, holding down the investigation with Chief Gates. Gates is apparently getting some heat from the mayor of Atlantic City and wants to solve the case quickly. They rule out his ex-wife, who he had given a building in Queens. Gates tells Beckett that she thinks she's a good cop but could be an even better one without all the distractions. And by distractions, she obviously means the hot, crazy writer always following her around.
Beckett, awesomely, defends Castle the entire episode. She defends Castle so well that while I wouldn't say that Gates is softening on the issue by the episode's end, I would say she's a little mellower about it. Beckett explains that Castle's out of the box thinking often helps them put the investigative puzzle pieces together. Gates thinks that good old fashion detective leg work will do the trick but we've been watching this show long enough to know that the team can crack cases twice as fast when Castle is allowed to spitball crazy theories and dress up as dead rock stars.
Fire and Jam
At Atlantic City, Castle is super jazzed to see Carrot Top in a way that no actual human being has ever been excited to see Carrot Top. After getting them front row seats and bottle service at the Borgata, the team gets down to business. And that business is figuring out what shady practices Sam had going on before his death. They first see Sam's business partner, Charlie, who looks exactly like what you would imagine an Atlantic City casino owner or high class assassin would look like.
When they notice on some camera footage that Sam had been punched in the face, they go see nebbish Daniel in the casino's security room. Daniel is the eyes of the casino and cues up footage showing Charlie punch Sam. He also knows that the last time Castle was at the casino he set a mattress on fire and got jam all over the curtains. I'd love to know more about Castle's secret life as a Hunter S. Thompson novel sometime.
They find out from Beckett that Sam had just transferred ten million out of the casino and then uncover that Nadine the receptionist had something to do with the money transfer. Before they can speak with her she's kidnapped. They immediately think Charlie is responsible due to the punching and his super villain face. Accusing him of murder is not a great idea, since they're out of jurisdiction and Charlie boots them out. But don't worry; Castle has an amazing idea of how to get them back in the casino.
A Hunka Hunka Burning Blackmail
Dress like Elvis impersonators! It's genius! It also leads to some of the funniest visuals of the episode, as the three guys walk around like they own the place and flirt with showgirls. If there is a way to wear some kind of awesome disguise, Castle will find it.
Back in the casino they uncover the real truth behind the money scam. It turns out nebbish Daniel and Nadine were in on it together. Not because they wanted to steal the money, but because they were in love. Sam was obsessed with Nadine and had bought her parents' building in Queens in order to threaten eviction. They were going to blackmail him for the deed to the property but Sam freaked out and said they had no idea what they had gotten themselves into.
Soon Ryan and Esposito are hauled out of the casino and Castle is left to talk with bat wielding Charlie. Castle correctly calls that they borrowed money from the mob, specifically a scary gangster named Tommy Moretti. When Beckett shows up to help out she sees all the guys in their Elvis finest and Castle proud to have cracked open the case.
As the episode winds down Nadine and Daniel are reunited, the money is transferred and Moretti turns out to be either the stupidest or cockiest gangster ever when it's revealed he ate at an Italian restaurant close to the murder scene. Of course it wasn't Moretti who capped Sam. It was his ex-wife, who was tired of living in fear of her crazy husband and saw a chance to escape. Gates tells Beckett she'll inform the District Attorney of the circumstances of the crime, which seems like a warm hug on the Gates scale.
Also escaping are Ryan, Esposito and Castle who have escaped paperwork to return to Atlantic City for an unofficial bachelor party. If the tired look on Castle's face when he returns home is any indication, I'm guessing there might have been more pyrotechnics and jam involved.
On November 21 Castle
returns from a two week break with an emotional sniper episode that brings up issues from Kate's shooting. Will one of those issues be the 'I Love You' from Castle? We'll have to wait and find out!
What did you think of tonight's episode? Funny or too goofy? Did you miss Castle and Beckett working together or enjoy seeing them pair up with other characters for the episode? Sound off in the comments!
(Image courtesy of ABC)