Castle: Still – A Good Cop/Bad Cop Review

Castle: Still


Well, this is one time when it truly is a good thing to have two reviewers—the good and bad cop. Why is this a good thing? Because Melanie absolutely loved this episode, and I absolutely hated it. And, as far as I’m concerned, hated is not a strong enough term to describe my feelings about what I thought was a real snooze fest. A total yawner. But, I’m pretty sure I know why and how Melanie and I came to be at opposite ends of the spectrum on this one, with no common ground or element to share.

Melanie watches Castle for the romance and relationship. I watch for the comedy and the police procedure and forensics (or the lack of). This episode was all about the relationship, the love, and the goo-gooey-eyed moments that occurred over the history of the show. And we saw those moments via flashbacks. By the way, the flashbacks made this episode doubly painful for me because I despise “back-in-time” scenes. So, an entire episode of nothing but flashbacks of mushy stuff pretty much pushed me over the edge. But I can see how Melanie and a boat load of shippers would have spent their time last night squealing and drooling throughout the show.

Since there was no real police procedure (goodness knows what little we did see was goofy), I’ll first call on Melanie to share her giddiness with you. Melanie, have you returned to earth, or are you still floating among the clouds after seeing all the mushy stuff last night?

Melanie Atkins

I loved this episode. Absolutely LOVED it — even though I had to keep in mind that this episode should have aired before last week’s show. Consider that in terms of relationship continuity. Even so, after nearly a year of being together, Kate finally told Rick she loves him. Yes, she might have said the words under duress, under the threat of death, but Stana’s tears and the agony on her face told the tale. I was in tears, too. What about you?

The first scene with Rick bringing Kate breakfast in bed — he even made hearts in their coffee — and then her sitting on his lap set the tone for this one and told us the episode would focus on their relationship. Yes, Kate stepped on a bomb inside the suspect’s apartment and had to remain “still” to keep from setting it off, but the episode did revolve around her and Rick. He stayed inside the apartment to keep her company even though he could have fled at the beginning to save himself. He used humor to keep her distracted so she wouldn’t focus on her predicament, and it worked, at least for a while.

All of the flashbacks and fun from the pilot on brought back so many good memories and made me laugh out loud over and over again. They reminded me why I love this show so much. One day I’m going to gather all my DVDs and watch the show again from the beginning, just because I can. I love the evolution in Kate and Rick’s relationship and the way they’ve learned to trust and love one another. The way they’ve opened up, maybe not on every level even now, but so much more with each new episode. This show has hit all the right marks with me, and that says a lot because I write romance. Kudos to Andrew Marlowe and company for finally giving me the love story I’ve craved ever since I started watching television.

I adored the relationship part of this particular episode, and that of course made up most of it, but I did giggle at the Mission Impossible-like green lasers shooting up from down below to outline the edge of the bomb. Seriously, folks? I could hear Lee’s loud groan from here in Mississippi. If that’s really the way bomb disposal units do that, I’ll retract my statement… but seriously? And Rick coming up with the code at the last second… okay, I can live with that. He did save Kate after all… and the hug they shared once the bomb disengaged made me tear up all over again.

And of course, now we know Gates is aware Kate and Rick are in a relationship. Finally! Like Gates said in the show, she’s not an idiot. I knew she had to know, and I thought they handled her letting them in on it in a great way. So glad that silly story line is over, however. I thought they dragged it out way too long. Sorry, but I did. A little of that went a really long way.

Crazy green lasers and Gates aside, I thought the powers that be did a fabulous job of putting tonight’s show together so fast. Still was an extra episode ABC added after Marlowe, et al, had lined up the remainder of the episodes for the end of the season, so they had to decide what to do in a hurry. They shot the show in three days, versus eight, and then used the clips from previous seasons to fill in… giving us that delicious trip down memory lane. Yay for the wonderful editors who took on that monumental task. I thought the idea worked perfectly.

Tension, angst, drama, laughter, tears… it doesn’t get any better than this. I’m afraid the next two episodes might kill me, however, what with the… well, never mind. I don’t want to spoil too much. Stana did tweet that the finale is a tearjerker, but in a good way. Really?

Only two more episodes to go in season five.

Lee Lofland

I just have a couple of points to address this week.

First, the fully-suited entry team kicks in an apartment door. They’re ready to do battle, complete with Kevlar helmets atop their little actor heads. As they make their carefully executed entry, a pony-tailed Beckett steps into the line. I’m sure you guys are aware there’s a certain order and purpose of the entry team. Each person has an assignment and their position in the line dictates what each person is supposed to do. So Beckett jumping line is just not the proper thing to do. Besides, she wasn’t dressed appropriately for the task at hand. Not to mention how silly it is to have Castle parading around, unarmed, in a highly charged for-well-trained-cops-only situation.

And let’s not forget the crossfire situation surrounding the bomber (Fosse). Oh, and Ryan running through the alley holding his pistol in outstretched arms. If you have a moment, re-watch the scene and you’ll see his weapon waving side to side, wildly. An accidental trigger pull during that scene and who knows who’d have been the recipient of that round.

Yes, the bomb disposal unit was pretty goofy. In real life, the team commander absolutely would not have allowed Castle to remain in the room with Beckett. And, they most certainly would not allow him to wander around at will, going out for coffee, etc.

– Why on earth would Ryan and Esposito simply leave Beckett and Castle in a building where a bomb was set to go off? They warned her about it and then we saw the duo at the precinct talking to Gates. Odd.

Finally, I was a bit confused about the premise of the bomb, the bomber, and the guy the bomber was targeting. As I understood it, the bomber (Fosse) was trying to learn the identity of his kid, I think. But when Castle figured that out, he also correctly guessed that the password to deactivate the explosive was the mystery kid’s name, Billy. Well, if that were the case, then Fosse already knew the kid’s name. Somebody please clear this up for me. Not that it’s important, because it’s not. Besides, it fit perfectly into this week’s totally ridiculous case.

Well, as I said earlier, I didn’t like this episode at all. But I’m sure the true shippers are still swooning because they had the opportunity to see all the lip-locking and tear-jerking moments all in one episode. Good for the shippers, too, because this sort of thing is precisely why they love this show. And they are the target audience, not me.

There was one good aspect to this yawner…I had an extra hour to work on my current book, which, for the first time since the show first aired, is what I did while this episode slogged by.

By the way, who knew that Beckett had worn so many different hairstyles over the years? And I’d almost forgotten that Castle is a writer…

28 replies
  1. Cynthia
    Cynthia says:

    I mostly enjoyed the episode for what it was — I’ve certainly seen worse clip shows in my life — but crossfire and gunwaving* aside, I’m curious about the protocol when having a weapon trained on a suspect who has a history of bombing and appears to be holding and activating a device. Would there be a reason (other than fear of inadvertently hitting Ryan in this case) to not shoot Fosse? Because that was a big distraction throughout the episode for me.

  2. brook
    brook says:

    agree with fat nathan, clipart show. don’t see how this episode was to precede the “quail” episode? i really don’t see how any of these shows “follows” another other than the 2-parters. don’t agree with those saying this is a great love story. castle saying “ILY” 3 times and Beckett once in nearly 5 years !! They don’t even talked to each other, give each other memorable gifts other than a pair of earrings which he never actually gave her. Reminds me of the old “I told you I love you once, if it changes I’ll let you know.”

  3. Amerelium
    Amerelium says:

    A great premise: Castle bugging the hell outta Becked, with no way for her to escape – this could have been a GREAT comedy episode.

    Instead, it turned out to be once of those collection-of-clips-from-previous-episodes thing that for some reason every US TV show apparently HAVE to do at some point.

    I’ll mention one thing: Putting together a lot of old scenes in a new episode only served to highlight how fat Nathan Fillion has become…

  4. Caro
    Caro says:

    I’m with you, Lee. It was a yawner for me. I enjoy the relationship bit, as long as there is a real story of some sort there. Not this time.. Didn’t know it was an add-on, done quickly. That certainly helps exaplain rhings, but I still was bored silly.


  5. Joanna Aislinn
    Joanna Aislinn says:

    Sigh. IDK. I’m a monster DWTS fan and often wind up finishing up day-job notes in front of the TV as Castle airs.

    I am a sucker for flashback montages. That’s probably the only thing that really held my interest, besides being curious about the cliffhanger: now-how-are-they-getting-Kate-out-of-this? (I thought them figuring out the code together was cutesy, and of course Kate picks the correct nickname. I find the climax anti-climactic, not that I can come up with anything better in a dramatic, action or melodramatic manner. Seriously too, can someone really stand THAT still “for hours”??)

    I’ll stop here, seeing that my response can go on and on. All I can say, Lee and Melanie, is that you’ve inspired a post of my own on this (I’ve wanted to since the show started) and will link back to this review a little later this week.

    Thanks. I always look forward to what you two have to say after I actually get through an episode, lol.

  6. joy
    joy says:

    Hated this episode. Way to many flashbacks, all appearing within seconds of one another, which makes the episode annoying. Then again, I only watch the show to see how bad it can get AND to read your witty reviews, Lee (mainly the latter). I’ve never felt that there was any chemistry between the two leads, so any scene with them being lovey dovey feels uncomfortable.

    And the whole premise felt off. I couldn’t believe that the Fosse dude killed himself. I was so sure that the lawyer or someone else had murdered him. Then again, I was also pretty sure that they would get Lanie to take one look at the bomb victim and figure out how to defuse the bomb. With her expertise in just about everything, surely she was capable of that?

  7. Raphael Salgado
    Raphael Salgado says:

    When I started to see all the flashbacks, I also kinda distanced myself from the episode from these “fillers” until the actual parts of the episode came back into play.

    Overall, it was an enjoyable episode, and I guess the “x-ray of the whole place” made it “safe” for Castle to prance around the apartment while Kate stood motionless for most of the episode.

    I wish the order of the episodes were as it was shown, with the previous episode of Kate questioning the relationship, followed by the two “I love you” declarations in this episode, because this episode was a big testament of their relationship that should’ve resolved Kate’s feelings in the “previous” episode. So now, in the original order, it makes no sense to me.

    I, too, am glad the whole hidden relationship part is over. But, what’s next for the couple? We’ve gone through the evil Senator and Kate’s mom’s death backstory, Castle’s dad backstory, the 3XK story, and the whole Caskett courtship. The stumbling path to the proposal and then marriage?

  8. Kim Bahnsen
    Kim Bahnsen says:

    I’m with Lee on this one. I played online bridge throughout it because nothing happened. I’m not a fan of the flashbacks, best moments type episodes because they seem sort of a cheat. Nothing propels the couple forward nor the action. A bit of a yawner for me.

  9. Kapil
    Kapil says:

    Hey Lee, I was just wondering – is there any possibility in such a situation where the cops can make a fake deal with the bomber??? Somehow get the young fish-out-of-water lawyer on your side, promise amnesty and then don’t follow through. I know its shady but a cop’s life is on the line and, at least on TV shows, this (and when kids are in danger) is when the cops start acting shadily.

  10. Molly Weston
    Molly Weston says:

    Lee, here’s another one for your team! I absolutely HATE shows that are full of flashback clips. The one last night was evidently worse for me than most because I fell asleep before the first commercial. Unfortunately, the 11:00 news wasn’t good either…

  11. Lee Lofland
    Lee Lofland says:

    Apparently, Elizabeth, you don’t know why I write my portion of the reviews. It started in the first season (I feel like a broken record) when a group of writers asked if the police procedure and forensics used on this show were correct. So, I started pointing out the good and the bad so they’d know what could, or shouldn’t be used in their books.

    Therefore, what seems to be a “bit silly” to you is actually important to the thousands of writers who visit the site.

  12. Elizabeth F
    Elizabeth F says:

    I liked the episode, but I have never not liked one of the episodes. I enjoyed the flashbacks as did my 23 y/o daughter with whom I was watching. We laughed at the corny goofy remarks he makes all squished into little 2 minute vignettes. “I really am ruggedly handsome…” I own all the DVDs and watch them over and over. Am in Season 3 again, just watched the magician episode. I took a break and watched Season 5 and 6 of FOYLE’S WAR, I need to catch up on GRIMM but I will put the CASTLE DVD back in soon and enjoy it as much as the first viewing.

    I don’t watch them for forensics, but for fun, the same way I watch BONES. To keep nit-picking them over their procedures seems a bit silly. They are just fun, like MOONLIGHTING was or MAGNUM PI or ROCKFORD FILES or THE GOOD GUYS.

    I could totally see Nathan Fillion playing Jim Rockford.

  13. Sally Carpenter
    Sally Carpenter says:

    I think they could make a great episode with Rick and Kate flying out to LA for the premeire of the Nikki Heat movie and someone is murdered on the red carpet. Or maybe such a plot is in the works?
    The bomber looking for his son gambit reminds me of the episode of the guy who staged an elaborate bank robbery just to steal a letter with the address of his wife and son. Wouldn’t it be simpler and cheaper to hire a PI to find them? Or look them up on the Internet?
    A popup during the show last night mentioned chapter one of a “new” Nikki Heat book was available online. Will have to check it out. . .

  14. Katarzyna
    Katarzyna says:

    Sally, they were talking about Derrick Storm comic books and Rick was signing them in “The Final Frontier” episode, also Gates told him that she has read “Frozen Heat” and got all the other Nikki Heat novels. So they’re talking about them. Not sure whether the movie ever finished shooting, ’cause if you remember from LA episode, the actress who was supposed to play Nikki Heat had a little alcohol problem…

    As for “Still”, I’m with Melanie and others, I absolutely LOVE this episode 🙂 Every second of it.

  15. Julie Kramer
    Julie Kramer says:

    I had some problems with this episode. If the goal of the bomber was to learn his son’s whereabouts and see him before he died (apparently he had terminal cancer or something) then why did he want to cut a deal with authorities for amnesty? Why didn’t he just say, I’ll give you the bomb code if you let me see my son. And why did he kill himself in the jail cell if he didn’t have long to live anyway? Wouldn’t he have at least waited for the bomb to go off? And suicide removed any chance he had of finding his son.

  16. Sally Carpenter
    Sally Carpenter says:

    One more question: whatever happened to Nikki Heat? That’s the whole reason Kate/Rick got together, but the past two seasons have said nothing about the novel and precious little about Rick’s writing. In third season, a “Nikki Heat” movie was filming in LA and our heroes met the “actors” playing Rick’s characters. Did the movie ever finish shooting? Did the scriptwriters simply forget about it? I realize the focus of the show is on the romance, but is Rick going to give up Nikki now that he has Kate?

  17. a
    a says:

    I forgot to mention about the bombs. In this day and age, wouldn’t the bomb squad have gone into the apartment with robots? forgot humans altogether, because these bombers tend to booby trap their apartments….?

  18. a
    a says:

    I only watched the first scene, the last scene and the ILY scene. And I watched them all last week, because people from Germany got to see Still last week and posted just about the whole show on You Tube. The rest of the show was unwatchable to me. I tried. I couldn’t do it. I’ve seen so many compilations on You Tube that the ones on the show weren’t interesting. Torturing the leads and watching them cry is not my idea of entertainment either.

    Loved the first scene. I especially loved the very opening with the bird’s eye camera. It made me think of Castle as Kathy Bates in Misery and I chuckled. I was very glad to see Beckett’s healthy ankles. LOL. The rest of that scene was on point — perfect as far as I’m concerned. The only mistake was mentioning their first meeting without showing it. It meant I had to go back and watch that meeting, then watched that whole episode. S1E1 was so. much. better. chemistry-wise than. any. episode. since (IMHO).

    I HATED the ILY scene. It was acted fine, but the precedent on this show of only saying ILY at horrifyingly awful moments is disgusting. It’s about torturing the fans. And the first ILY should have been said at a time when they actually could touch each other. Some people always argue when I point these kinds of things out that they couldn’t touch each other at that time. But I remind people at these times that the writers have FULL CONTROL about where and when the actors say things…. It was just another in a mountainous heap of missed moments on this show. What are they freaking thinking?

    The end scene was cute. I liked that Gates knows and is turning her head. I wish they would have let us in on that sooner. The Valentine’s earrings would have been a perfect place. Yet another missed opportunity and it shows that they don’t plan this show at all well. But the conversation was stupid. How many people ask each other “which was the best kiss?”. Also, we’ve been led all along to believe that they’re having hot sex but can’t show it, but now they instead admit via that stupid question that these pecky kisses are all they do (LOL)? The whole notion of organic relationship points and “subtext” that Marlowe congratulates himself for all flew out the window with that one line.

    I saw a You Tube clip of Nathan Fillion at a Canadian Comicon. He said one of his dream roles is Jim Rockford. YESSSS!!!! He’d be perfect at that. Comic crime-solving without the romantic angst would be perfect for him. Can I say it? I’m rooting for this show to die and for him to move on to Rockford Files! Maybe when he gets tired of Castle (which I suspect is coming soon), they can replace him on Castle and he can move on to Rockford. It would be risky and I can see why he might not want to do it, but a girl can dream, can’t she?

    And now I’m really gone for the season. The idea of a cliffhanger in a show that CAN’T change because changing would entirely screw up the whole premise of the show is just about torturing the audience. A positive spin, more about that “just getting started” premise would keep me watching next season. A torturous cliffhanger (like Season 2) would just peeve me off. Again, I’m a Shonda Rhimes post traumatic stress victim (because of the season where baby is stolen, not saying how), so I don’t trust ABC. But I will say I never watched Private Practice or Greys again after that. So I won’t watch the finale and penultimate of this show either, this time for the sake of not ruining it for myself.

    Anyway, I voice here what I would have said at TWOP ;-). Thanks for the opportunity to do so, and thanks for your excellent reviews.

  19. Kapil
    Kapil says:

    While it was after all a clip show, and we all know their true purpose is to just fill an episode slot while using the least possible amount of money and filming time – I thought it was a decent episode. Better than clip shows done by other shows – but thats not saying much.

    But the show is surely getting lazier by the day. Did anyone notice that the bomb timer had no hour counter – only minute and second counters – but the writers made sure to explicitly tell us that Beckett has been standing there for hours AND the timer was probably set off when she stepped on it. And then of course, we have all the plot loopholes whereby the bomber didn’t actually need a timer on the bomb if he intended to question the education board guy himself, and the fact that the bomber was willing to commit suicide and give up on his life and quest to find his son but was still unwilling to reveal the bomb deactivation code despite the fact that it was going to kill someone he had no intention of killing and would not benefit him in any way. Couldn’t he just have made a deal with the cops to let him see his son in exchange for the code???? Of course – the guy’s conveniently crazy so the writers don’t need to worry about this stuff…

  20. Pat Marinelli
    Pat Marinelli says:

    Melanie, I also loved this episode. Sorry, Lee, although I did think some of the actions and bomb stuff was way off. I don’t normally like flashback scenes as they are so confusing, but I thought the Castle team did a great job and presented the flashbacks extremely well. I guess it helped because it was the romance scenes. I think a few of the kiss scenes must have been unused scenes as they did not look familiar.

    After watching DVR’d episodes, I realized that Gates has known about Castle and Beckett since the earrings in the pocket and the kidnapping of Alexis episodes. Subtle camera glances gave it away.

    Melanie, I beat you on watching Castle from the beginning. I had a friend who hadn’t see season one and two so we had Wednesday Castle marathons. We had just finished when TNT network picked up Castle for reruns. I watch those when I don’t feel like setting up the DVD player.

    Lee, I too noticed Castle should not have been in the entry scene with SWAT and I laughed out loud at Ryan’s weaving weapon. Of course, I knew they wouldn’t let Castle stay with Beckett. I’ll admit that it bothered me that Castle didn’t even think about his daughter during this show, but I’ll caulk that up to time constraints, just like that confusing bomb plot. Can’t explain it, but I’ll check with twin sister who can usually fill me in on stuff like that. If she can explain it I’ll let you know.

    As for Beckett’s hair. Oh, Lee, every woman who watches the show pays close attention to how Beckett as gone from a shorted cropped cut to those long locks. As the hair grew her real cop image softened in my eyes. And here’s the shocker for you…sometimes not in a good way. Sometime Beckett is so soft I can’t believe she’s a cop and I’m not talking about when she’s with Castle, but on the job. But I love the show so I shake that stuff off and read your reviews for the real lowdown.

    Thank you both for your input….Always!

  21. Sally Carpenter
    Sally Carpenter says:

    This episode was better than I expected. I usually don’t like clip shows, but the chosen clips showed why “Castle” was so much fun in the first place. Best line was when Castle commented about Beckett’s hairstyles.
    If the show had taken place in LA, the bomber would never have a chance to set off the bomb. The second he pulled an object out of his pocket–anything–the cops would have shot him.
    And, yes, the “figuring out the code” in the last 10 seconds before the bomb went off was such a cliche and made me laugh. At least Castle didn’t rip the wires out of the bomb as he didn’t in a previous episode.

  22. maegan
    maegan says:

    the way I understood it, the bomber knew his son’s name but not his location. His intended target worked at the Board of Education, giving him access to his son’s records, including his address (which is necessary to assign a student to his district).

    Anyway, Even though the episode felt thrown together (because it was), I enjoyed it. I’ve never watched Castle for the procedure (that’s what Southland is for)so I’ve learned to overlook its goofiness. The shipper in me was positively giddy… I even liked Gates for a hot second.I love the show and am a long-time fan of Nathan Fillion (Firefly, anyone?). Can’t wait for the finale!

  23. Dave
    Dave says:

    I thought this was purely a ‘filler’ episode – something to tide veiwers over until we get to the meat of the finale.

  24. John Otte
    John Otte says:

    I think (and I might be wrong) that the ex-girlfriend and kid didn’t go into witness protection until after the bomber was released from prison. So it’s possible that he heard his ex had a little boy named Billy, and then the kid disappeared before he could see him.

  25. Janis Patterson
    Janis Patterson says:

    I’m chiming in with Melanie, too, Lee. Sometimes you want a steak, sometimes you want ice cream, and this episode was ice cream to the max. I agree with you about the stupid crime plot, though. I thought the bomber knew about the child, and his name, but was going to threaten the school/baseball card collecting guy to get the boy’s address – not his identity.

    Anyway, it was a lovely, over-the-top romantic episode and the romantic side of me enjoyed it thoroughly – the critical side… well, let’s just keep it quiet for a while. Sometimes over-the-top romance is enough.

  26. Lynn LaFleur
    Lynn LaFleur says:

    I have to agree with Melanie on this episode, Lee. I loved it! I know there were parts that were ridiculous as to police procedure, but the flashbacks of Caskett getting together were perfect. I love a happy ending.

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