Castle: Significant Others
by Stephen Janes
Warning: Potential spoilers for this episode. You have been warned.
With the birth of a new year, millions across the nation are pledging to find themselves in better health and in better loving hands. The return of Castle featured a prominent theme of divorce, starting with Richard Castle’s ex-wife returning to the scene and causing a wedge between Castle and Beckett. In addition, a divorce lawyer for the rich and famous who only defends women was found murdered in her car. You would think that a busy street in New York at night would feature at least one witness, but I digress.
The wedge between Castle and Beckett starts when Meredith invites herself to stay with Castle and Alexis due to the latter being sick. Castle puts up absolutely no resistance and is constantly beleaguered by Beckett about the decision. I can’t really remember the last time we saw Beckett genuinely upset at Castle. The dynamic gets even more awkward when Beckett makes coffee for Castle, but is intercepted by Meredith wearing nothing but short-shorts and a tank top. If I were in Castle’s shoes, I’d probably run as fast as I could to the nearest exit.
This wedge goes from painful to weird when Beckett receives a phone call from Meredith inviting her to dinner. Beckett accepts because in Castle’s own words, “Refusing would be just insensitive,” much to the hilarity of Esposito and Ryan. Castle thinks this will work for the best until he’s reminded of the impending ‘boom’ that is likely to occur. I have to wonder if Jon Huertas (Esposito) and Seamus Dever (Ryan) just ad-lib when they’re together, because the pair is always a highlight of the episode.
The trailers for this episode made it seem as though Castle was making the wrong decision and really messing up his relationship with Beckett, but it’s all just clever editing. The dinner between Meredith and Beckett concluded with the two of them having a laugh at Castle’s expense. Beckett seemed to enjoy Meredith’s company and the get-together seemed to wash away Castle’s faux pas from earlier. I would have preferred if the actual dinner were shown during the episode just to see the tension ease between the two, however. Meredith even gives Beckett her blessing before the end of the episode, but provides the true reason as to why her and Castle didn’t have a lasting marriage, which gives Beckett something to think about.
With the “Caskett” era of episodes, the drama and relationship has been more interesting than the actual murder case itself. This episode actually featured a pretty interesting concept with a murdered divorce lawyer and her (seemingly) limitless suspects. I do have to say, the last few reviews I wrote for Castle I was disappointed in the overly predictable nature of each episode. This episode, “Significant Others,” concluded with a pretty big twist that was not foreseen, but was one of those, “Now I cannot unsee” moments. I thought it was well done and concluded what was an already involving and entertaining episode.
After a couple of episodes that fell flat, “Significant Others” really reset the bar this season. It had an easily established conflict and the aftermath, an interesting and evolving plot line and a great conclusion. I loved this episode, and despite the difficult nature, would really like to see the rest of this season carry the same level of intensity. Great way to kick-off the New Year.
Rating: 4.25 out of 5