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Castle 5-21: The Squab and the Quail

So ABC is playing fast and loose with these last few episodes. Originally, the episode that was supposed to air last night involved a bomb, so it’s understandable why they are waiting to air it. I’m not quite sure when it will air now since the preview for next week looked pretty different. Then again, from what I have heard of the episode (Castle trying to distract Beckett), I do see how it might fit. They’re just playing up the laughs instead of the drama like the preview last week showed. Then again, it might mean we’ll get two intense episodes back to back instead of the usual light ones in between. We’ll just have to wait and see.

I was looking for something that might be a spoiler or some other out of synch element last night, and I didn’t see any. What I did see was fun.

The episode opens at a dinner party at a fancy restaurant in town. The food is brought out to one particular table, and just after the first bite, one of the guests falls over dead.

Ironically enough, it sounds like the set up for the collection of short stories I finished last night before the episode aired. It was a culinary themed collection, and there were way too many cases of poison.

Anyway, before arriving at the scene, Castle was playing a video game, and Beckett was trying to seduce him. Castle was too intent on beating the person he normally loses to and wouldn’t drop things to come. Beckett is upset that the Castle seems to be taking her for granted.

And they are bickering over that when they arrive at the restaurant and learn that one of the people eating dinner with the victim is a famous Billionaire – a very handsome one at that. At first, Castle is impressed, but when Beckett goes a little goey over him, he starts to get jealous.

And then they figure out the waiter set the meals down in front of the wrong people. The person who died was not the target – the Billionaire was. Suddenly, they realize that the criminal is out there and ready to strike again. Billionaire asks for protection and specifically Beckett. Castle tries to protest (Beckett, too, to a lesser extent), but Gates has her orders. And so Castle tries desperately to get the case solved as quickly as possible.

There are some funny scenes as he over hypes on coffee while trying to sober up a drunk who witnessed one of the busboys at the restaurant acting suspiciously. Also, Ryan and Esposito’s reaction to Beckett being forced to work with a man against her will is less than sympathetic.

When Ryan and Esposito try to go to the busboy’s home, they find him dead, shot through the head and his hands bleached. The toxin used to kill the victim is also in his apartment. They’ve got their man, but who hired him?

The toxin tracks back to one of the Billionaire’s ex-girlfriends who went a little crazy when they broke up. But she needed money and was asked to sell it, her money going to an off shore account.

While the guys are tracking down these leads, the heart of the story is actually what is going on with Beckett and the Billionaire. They are holed up in a suite at a fancy hotel. He keeps flirting with her, and she keeps trying to keep things strictly business. Finally, he asks point blank what the deal is with her and Castle. She says they are in a relationship. He asks if it is serious, and she hesitates before saying yes. Naturally, he pounces, and Beckett admits they haven’t talked about it. He tries to take advantage of that and leans in to kiss Beckett. She pushes him away, and just like that, a bullet comes through the window, aimed for right where the Billionaire would have been if Beckett hadn’t broken off the kiss.

Watching Beckett describe the scene for Ryan with Castle there was pretty funny, especially Castle’s realization as to why the shot missed Billionaire. But it also ramps up the search.

The busboy was approached on the street and given the toxin he put on the food. They only have the back of the man who gave it to him on video, but they do manage to track down his identity and confirm that he was the sniper who almost took out Billionaire.

They’ve tracked the payment to the ex-girlfriend to the company that Billionaire owns. And it appears not all his investments are on the up and up. Could he be embezzling money from his own company? (At this point, I had to laugh since the guest start who played the Billionaire, Ioan Gruffudd’s, character did something like that in last season’s show Ringer.) The victim was an investor who was asking to see some of the properties involved. Could Billionaire have killed him to keep the embezzling from coming out?

They’ve got the motive right, but they have the wrong killer. It was actually the Billionaire’s right hand man who had been embezzling. He was going to kill the Billionaire to cause confusion and try to cover his tracks before he was found out and sent to jail.

Our final scene is back at Castle’s loft. Castle is going to show just how much he still appreciates and values Beckett by giving her a full body message. As he is walking into the bedroom that he has all set up, she asks, “Castle, where are we going?” Castle, not knowing what she really means, says, “Into the bedroom.” Beckett gets a bit of a worried look on her face before following him as the episode fades to black.

Seriously, could either of them have been stupider about their relationship? Castle ignores Beckett. And then Beckett chooses one of the worst times to ask about the future of their relationship. Yes, they did need to discuss it, but come on, that wasn’t the time or place.

Other than that, I did enjoy the episode. It was a bit more character oriented than normal, but the mystery was decent. And the laughs at Castle’s expense were plentiful.

I’m curious to see which episode they wind up airing next week and how they are going to leave us this season.

Speaking of which, they made a couple of references to the Senator. They just want to remind us of him before the season finale since I’m sure he’ll be back. I haven’t heard for sure he’s coming back, but the season finale always has to do with Beckett’s mother’s murder, so it would be true to form.

What thoughts do you have for me?