This week on Castle
: Alexis is back with unflattering bangs, there is an unprecedented lack of wedding discussion and Castle is finally (but temporarily) rendered theory-less. Let's dive right in!
Like Clue in Reverse
The murder victim of "Room 147" is Justin Marquette, a struggling actor. He's found shot to death in room 147 of a Best Travellers' Hotel. Justin's waaaaaaaay off-Broadway theatre company informs the team that Justin was threatened by a woman a few days before. The woman, Anita, immediately confesses to the murder, describing the crime scene in perfect detail.
As Beckett informs Castle that "not every case can be shrouded in mystery and intrigue," the case becomes shrouded in mystery and intrigue. It turns out that Anita has a rock solid alibi for the time of the murder. The police psychologist says that she is sincere in her belief that she killed Justin, and she seems kind of insulted that no one else will believe her. In the immortal words of Ron Weasley, "She needs to sort out her priorities."
While everyone is trying to come to terms with the weirdness of the situation, another person comes in to confess to the murder. This guy, Sam, gives all of the same details. Also like Anita, he claims to have never met Justin and has no idea why he killed him. They're also both having trouble remembering the last two weeks, and a search of Anita's apartment shows that the past two weeks of her calendar have been deleted. And as Anita and Sam argue over who really killed Justin, another
guy walks in and confesses.
Dwight is our third confessor, and sadly for him everyone has pretty much had it by the time he gets there. They won't even listen to his confession. They do notice that he has a strange symbol drawn on his hand, though, the same one they found scribbled on Anita's confession. Years of watching Charmed
and my subsequent Wiccan phase inform me that this is a triquetra. I was kind of hoping I would get to break out one of the four Books of Shadows that I still own, but the symbolism is not important to the plot. Another day, then.
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It's a Small World After All
The triquetra makes the team suspect that the three confessors are connected, though they claim to not know each other. Their suspicions are confirmed when they realize that a red van was parked outside each of the confessors' houses two weeks before. They trace the van to Miles Madsen, and they trace Madsen to EHI. EHI is a new age-y, cult-like organization that uses a triquetra in its logo and a lot of crap in its philosophies. The leader, Dr. Bower, has a PhD in some made-up expertise and preaches some weird nonsense that not even teenage Wiccan me would have believed.
Castle and Beckett go to visit Dr. Bower, but have to video chat with him because he's in "Stockholm." He denies having anything to do with Justin or the confessors in the most obnoxious way possible and says that Madsen hasn't worked for him for years. They don't believe him, but he's being an uncooperative tool so there's nothing they can really do about it. They catch a break when drug testing reveals that Anita, Sam and Dwight had all been drugged with memory-inhibiting substances for the past two weeks. I was fairly convinced that they were going to use hypnotism as an explanation, so I'm glad they thought of something a little more outside of the box.
Now that they know the confessors' memories were altered, Castle and Beckett question them more intensely about the details of the crime. When the three fight over how many water bottles were in the fridge, Castle realizes that the fridge in room 147 opens facing the door, making it impossible for someone walking in to see anything inside. This means that what the three witnessed did not take place in the hotel room where Jason was actually murdered.
A little research reveals that EHI rented an entire floor of a different hotel within the same chain for an event two weeks before. Security footage shows Dr. Bower meeting with Justin in the lobby, which gives the team enough for a warrant. It turns out Stockholm is actually a back office in the EHI building, where they find Dr. Bower shredding incriminating files.
Terrible Problem Solving
Dr. Bower is guilty of a lot of things. Destroying evidence, impeding an investigation, being a jackass, etc. He admits that he hired Justin to do an experimental therapy film. The participants were given drugs and then showed the film of Justin being killed, with the hope that they would project their personal demons onto him and then experience murdering their problems. But it turns out that drugs and simulated homicide don't mix very well, and people started thinking that they actually committed murder. In an attempt to erase these negative and lawsuit-inducing effects, Dr. Bower had Madsen intensely drug the confessors so that they would forget their involvement with EHI altogether.
All of this proves that Dr. Bower is a terrible person, but not a murderer. This is because he didn't actually kill Justin. Instead, it was one of the people in Justin's theatre group, which makes sense because they probably wouldn't have bothered with the two seconds of development they got at the beginning of the episode unless one of them was the killer. Pam, the stage manager, hates EHI. Her brother had died in a tragic and vague sweat-lodge incident that EHI was responsible for.
I can't even begin to imagine what that would entail, but it understandably gave her a vendetta against the organization. She learned of Justin's video from her day job and saw it as the perfect opportunity to implicate EHI in a crime that would bring them down. Justin was just a means to that end.14 TV Couples We'd Love to Go on a Double Date With>>>Your Weekly Relationship Saga, 2nd Edition
As per usual, there is a thread of Castle/Beckett domestic drama running through the episode. This time, it involves the newly single Alexis. She refuses to move home, even though she's a young woman living in a shady apartment by herself in New York City and has a millionaire father who can get her out of her lease. Beckett thinks that Alexis doesn't want to come home because of her, but in reality Alexis just feels really dumb about making such a bad decision. They have a sweet talk that inspires Alexis to stop being so hard on herself and move back by the end of the episode.
I'm always really happy with the way Castle
portrays Beckett and Alexis' relationship. Beckett never treats Alexis like a child but also never treats her like just another girlfriend. They have a nice balance of familial and friendly that I hope we see more of in the future. Now that all of Castle's favorite ladies are back under one roof, I think we can expect it.
Castle airs Mondays at 10pm on ABC.
(Image courtesy of ABC)