Original Air Date: Dec 5, 2011
Divina F – TwoCents Reviewer
Yes, Castle and Beckett wake up handcuffed to each other. This is, in fact, essential to the plot. This episode was all over the place. In a good way.
After discovering that Beckett’s watch, gun and badge are missing, as well as Castle’s phone and wallet, they realize that they don’t remember anything. Beckett has a needle mark on her lower back, which helps them deduce that they have been drugged. They spend the next few minutes trying to remember how they got to the basement like place where they are. They remember meeting at a seedy hotel that rents rooms by the hour. To see a dead body. The victim might have been smothered to death, and he bore a with a similar needlemark, but his fingerprints have been burned.
Lanie finds a scrap of paper in his pocket that bears the address of a cafe, but the backside of the note is what leads Castle and Beckett to a house in Queens, where they encounter an old woman trapped in a cage, smiling at them. That’s the last thing they remember.
Back at the precinct, Ryan and Esposito banter about relationships before Iron Gates gets on their case about identifying the victim. They find out that he met with a suspicious person at that cafe the afternoon before he died.Thankfully, aided by Lanie’s diligence in retrieving prints from the damaged under layers of skin, they identifiy the victim. They get a witness to help render a sketch, but in a welcome twist, the man in the picture shows up. He’s an FBI agent, tailing the victim on suspicion of drug trafficking through his truck company. Spooner – the victim – has offered a deal: he’ll tell who he was working for if he gets immunity. Unfortunately, before he can follow through, he’s killed.
Meanwhile, Castle and Beckett are learning to work together. They find a light switch and a huge metal box, locked with a combination. They try to move it so that they can access a trap door in the ceiling. Unfortunately, it is way too heavy, so Castle attempts to undo the combination. He is successful after what must be a hundred attempts, and what they find inside is a gruesome collection of props out of a Saw film. They clear it out as quickly as possible to be able to move it, but when they try to open the trap door, one of their captors leers down at them and locks it.
Back at the precinct, Iron Gates and Agent Martinez are attempting to get a lock on who Spooer worked for. Ryan and Esposito find Beckett’s car, and luckily there is a surveillance camera nearby. They can’t see the license plate of the truck that whisks away one of the captors, but as soon as they find Castle’s lead on the back of the scrap of paper, they too find the house in queens. It has been cleared out, but neighbors claim to have seen the truck they are looking for, plus Beckett’s car, plus Spooner’s semi.
In the basement, Castle and Beckett examine the walls for a way out and instead hear what they think is another captive, leading Castle to think that they are being held for human trafficking. They start to cut away at a plaster wall, thinking of saving their fellow prisoner, but uncover a tiger. Castle, who obviously hasn’t seen The Hangover, feeds it some jerky he has in order to placate it, but it just continues to rip through the wall. They have to resort to standing the metal box on its side and standing atop, hoping rescue will come before the tiger knocks it over and mauls them to death.
Luckily Ryan and Esposito have found a connection between the mysteriously cleared out house in Queens and other houses foreclosed by the same bank. They run a search on how many of those houses/buildings have basements and come up with a handful. They reach the place where Castle and Beckett are just in time to save them from the tiger and call in backup to arrest their captors, who happen to be Spooner’s dealers in the trade of exotic pets.
What I liked best about the episode was that while Castle and Beckett were piecing together their memory and going through a partnership test, Esposito was warning Ryan about the crucial time before tying the knot and he and Ryan pretty much solved the case themselves. I am still a hopeful Castle/Beckett supporter, especially considering the end of the episode, but I can totally understand anyone who thought that the pushing and lampshading by Castle and Beckett about Esposito/Lanie (“They want to be together but they won’t admit it.”/ “It’s so obvious. Why can’t they see it?”) could be annoying to anyone watching. All I’m saying is this better happen for real before the end of this season or else the show might be in danger.
What are your thoughts? Was it great to see Ryan and Esposito more in the foreground of the case? Do you think Iron Gates has finally opened up to the idea of having Castle around? And are you as happy as I am that Beckett’s sexy hair is back?
Next Episode Air Date TBA: Til Death Do Us Part