Castle: The Final Nail – A Review

Castle: The Final Nail

Castle and Beckett find themselves on opposite sides of the aisle in this somewhat boring episode. The prime suspect in the murder-of-the-week just happened to be Castle’s old school chum, Damian “Somebody” (I don’t recall his last name. That’s how interested I was in this episode). Beckett and crew pegged the guy as suspect because, well, he was the husband of the victim and he had the motive for doing so…money. Damian was also a prime suspect in the murder of his own father over two decades ago. Coincidence? Beckett thinks not and she’s chomping at the bit to put Damian behind bars. Castle, on the other hand, is firmly convinced his old pal is innocent and does his best to get him off the hook.

Unfortunately, for the first time since I started watching and reviewing this show during the opening season, Nathan Fillian fell off his A game for a few minutes while trying to protect his friend from Beckett’s wrath. The scenes where he insisted upon his friend’s innocence were very forced and totally out of character for the actor. Of course, he’s such a wonderful actor no one would ever hold this tiny faux pax against him. In fact, I place the blame on the writer, not the actor. And that’s been the problem with the M.E. character, too. And we were certainly blessed this week in that we didn’t hear any of that nonsense. See how easily the M.E. stuff was handled by a few seconds briefing from a patrol officer at the scene? Now that was a breath of fresh air for a change. I’ll say it once more…Tamala Jones is a wonderful actor who’s forced to read horrible lines. Not her fault. Anyway, Fillian has nothing to worry about. He could appear on screen and not say a word and his fans would still love him.

Okay. Now for the murder. The victim. Hmm… She was popped in the head many times with what appeared to be a battery powered 16d nail gun, one that’s normally used for construction framing—like when you’re adding a new room with new walls, floors, and ceiling. That type of building. That’s sort of heavy-duty work. Therefore, the gun is  also quite heavy (I own a couple). It’s even heavier when it’s loaded with a full strip of nails. To make the gun activate and drive a nail, the part where the nail comes out must be firmly pressed against some sort of surface (yes, a head would work). So, after seeing the actual killer in this show, and seeing her small and dainty frame, including her hands, I have to wonder how she’d have held the heavy nail gun while struggling with the victim and still manage to press the nail gun tightly against the woman’s head long enough to activate it. AND, she’d have to know how to work the darn thing. It’s not an out-of-box type tool.

These two guys—Ryan and Esposito—have certainly come a long way since this show first aired. They’re now two characters with their own identities who play their roles very well. And they’re funny, too. I actually laughed out loud last night (one of the two or three good moments in the entire show) when Castle and Beckett were arguing and Ryan asked, “What’s going on?”

Esposito’s reply, “Mom and Dad are fighting.”


– Beckett interviewed the suspect at one point during the show. The interview started out pretty good with her asking good questions, playing tough cop, etc. But it quickly fell apart, as if the writer simply got tired of writing and quit. Maybe her phone rang and she lost her place in the script when she hung up. Who knows? But we’ve seen this sort of thing before from the writer of this episode, Moira Kirkland.

– Castle is allowed to visit with his friend in lockup. And he begins to question the guy. No way. No how. In real life, as off-base as it is, he’d be considered an “agent” of the department (I don’t mean that he’s like a secret agent, merely someone acting on the behalf of the police department), therefore, he’d have to abide by the same rules as the cops. See, the suspect views him as part of the official investigation, and he is. So, an attorney would have a field day with any agent of the department asking questions without Miranda because the answers to those questions would certainly be reported back to the police and held against him. Well, that among many other reasons why he wouldn’t be allowed back there. Safety is a big one. Remember, the guy is a suspected murderer.

Okay, so now Castle is running the investigation? It would seem so since he up and walked out of the department carrying a box of evidence from an open murder case, stating, “I’m going to solve this one…” Please…

Beckett confronts Castle’s friend (the guy she suspects of murder) alone, in his home. No back up? She thinks the guy is a dangerous killer. Even Batman takes Robin with him when he’s meeting with the Joker.

– Once again, we followed a show all the way to the end, watching a trail of clues leading to a suspect, in this case, Castle’s school friend, only to have a totally new person pop up as killer. Well, this lady was introduced earlier in the show, but only as a secondary character. There was not a single clue leading to her involvement at all. Very disappointing to the viewers. As they say, “We were robbed.” Viewers (and readers) like to work the case with the detective, hoping they’ll solve it before the authorities do. Well, that can’t happen when the killer is dumped on us in the last seconds of the show.

I hate to say it, because I like this show, but the only really satisfying part of this episode for me was at the end when Castle and Beckett were walking down the street talking about having a drink. Why was this scene my favorite? Because I knew the show was ending.

How about you, Melanie? What’s your take on The Final Nail?

Melanie Atkins

Hi, Lee. Thanks for asking me to blog again on the romance part of the show. Not much on the forensic front in this episode; at least, nothing much that I could see. Most of it dealt with trust issues – between Beckett and Castle, Castle and his friend, Damien Westlake, and Westlake and his wife and the other players in their circle of friends and frenemies.

• As you already know, Rick and Kate fought over the likelihood of Westlake’s guilt—in front of a suspect, thereby undermining Kate’s authority—and this infuriates her. She sends Rick home, leaving him in a quandary. He ends up apologizing to Kate after a heart to heart talk with Martha, and she lets him back on the case. Still, who does Rick side with? His old friend, or Beckett?

• It’s obvious that Kate doesn’t like being on that opposite side of the case from Rick. She also admires his persistence and staunch loyalty to Westlake. And when evidence that might exonerate his friend turns up, she tells Westlake, “Richard Castle believes in you. And I believe in him.”

Whoa! This is major—and a step up from Episode 13, Knockdown, when Kate told Detective Ragland that Rick is someone she trusts. Slowly but surely, little by little, Rick Castle is becoming her best friend and confidant. The man she turns to when the going gets tough. The man she can’t live without. No, she’s not to that point yet—but it’s coming.

• Another twist sends them back to Westlake in regard to his father’s murder, and we hear them say their patented line in unison: “I think I know who the killer is.” I’m sure Lee covered this, so I’m not going into the case here. My focus is on Kate and Rick. They are so in sync—and the look they exchange when the elevator doors open is hot enough to melt steel.

Yes, ladies and gentlemen. Forget Josh. Rick and Kate are on the threshold of a relationship that will sizzle and burn. They’ll fight like they did tonight sometimes—who doesn’t? But just think about the heat they’ll generate when they make up!

Stay tuned for a blockbuster two-parter that makes up the next two episodes. I’ve read some spoilers, and all I can say is WOW. I can’t wait. ; )

*     *     *

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Denene Lofland received a Ph.D. in Pathology, with an emphasis in microbiology, from the Medical College of Virginia. As a former biotech company director, Denene managed successful clinical projects that resulted in FDA approval for two new antimicrobial drugs for the treatment of pneumonia and cystic fibrosis. She also supervised several projects, including government-sponsored research which required her to maintain a secret security clearance.

A renowned scientist, Denene is known for her expertise in DNA, bioterrorism, and new drug discovery. She has published several articles in a variety of scientific journals and was recently asked to contribute to the thirteenth edition of Bailey and Scott’s Diagnostic Microbiology.

Denene is currently a professor at Armstrong Atlantic State University.

7 replies
  1. Lee Lofland
    Lee Lofland says:

    Hi TVFan. Thanks for stopping by, and for your take on the episode. I like to see views from all angles, especially since I’m only reviewing from a police procedural angle. But that doesn’t stop me from liking the show and offering my two cents as a fan.

    Good point about the file. I’d overlooked that point.

    And…Fillian appeared awkward to me ONLY in the scene where he was adamantly siding with his buddy over Beckett. I do, however, agree that he’s a good actor who doesn’t always need words to make his point.

  2. TVFanatic
    TVFanatic says:

    About the case, I agreed with most of your comments, except about Castle leaving with the file box on an open case. The murder of Damien Westlake’s Father was not in NY. It was in Puerto Rico. Castle had spoken to the retired cop in charge of that case. We can only assume that the older man had pulled some strings and had copies of that file sent to Castle. That is how Castle had access to them.

    However, I, like Melanie Atkins, am in it for the romance. This episode was far less comedic than normal, but still far from boring. We have seen deep emotional scenes from Beckett previously, this was our first chance to see Castle vunerable. I don’t think Nathan Fillion was off his A Game. In fact, he was able to show such emotion with his eyes alone. How he comes so close to crying without actually shedding a tear, I don’t know. He did the same thing in “Poof Your Dead” when he broke up with Gina, eventhough he didn’t love her, he was upset that he had hurt her. Also, it is easy to see why Castle loves Beckett, but it would be OOC for Beckett to just all of the sudden love Castle. She needs more than his jokes, charisma and good looks. This episode allowed her to see deeper into Castle’s soul, and believe me, she is looking for a soul mate. I love the fluff episodes as much as anybody, but these meatier ones are all about Character Development and I love it….

  3. bjcardone
    bjcardone says:

    I found using a staple gun hard! I didn’t believe a nail gun as a weapon. This was not a very good episode, as has already been pointed out. I loved the really funny one that aired last month and have been disappointed in those that followed.

  4. Lee Lofland
    Lee Lofland says:

    I did catch that about the cabinet maker, and I even commented to my wife about the type of nails. I, too, thought they were the type used for easy removal (with two heads). We used to call them scaffolding nails back in the day. But when I replayed the scene some looked like that type while others didn’t. Either way, it would’ve been tough for the killer in this episode to use a nail gun to kill her victim. Not really believable.

    Besides, why would a cabinet maker be using such large nails of either type?

    Sorry for the trouble getting into the site to post a comment. Since our hacking attack we’ve had to up the security precautions a bit.

  5. Valerie Hansen
    Valerie Hansen says:

    I know why it’s so quiet. It’s much harder to post than it used to be! But, here I am so I’ll opine.

    Lee, I caught one thing you didn’t mention. Must have dozed off?

    Anyway, one of the early suspects was supposed to be a cabinet maker and it was his nail gun from a remodel job he was doing for the victim. That is remotely possible, I suppose, but the nails they showed were the kind used to nail wooden forms for concrete footings and then pull easily when removing the forms. Carpentry? Probably not.

    And just so you won’t be bored further, I’ll brag. I shot a rampaging armadillo, on the run, with my short-barrelled .357 yesterday. Much more exciting than Castle. And legal here, too.

    Valerie Hansen

  6. melanie atkins
    melanie atkins says:

    No comments yet? Everyone must have been out celebrating Valentine’s Day. I heard that ratings plummeted for everybody last night. No wonder TPTB aired that not-so-great episode. Not that many people watched it. lol

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