This week’s Castle answered the long-speculated upon question: ‘What is Detective Esposito and/or Detective Ryan’s catchphrase?” Wait… you say nobody cares? (It’s “Not Necessarily” by the way). See if I share my eccentricities with you then!
Sooo back to the episode. In a fit of what ABC terms ‘Synergy’, “A Dance with Death” dealt with a murder on the set of a popular dancing reality show – and interestingly enough, Dancing with the Stars premiered just before this episode aired. Odd that.
Despite my jocularity, this was not my favorite episode of the season. Not that it was horrible… my thoughts rest firmly in the ‘too many suspects, not enough plot’ camp. Its weakness was definitely the murder case. The two backup stories were much more entertaining.
They creatively used Lanie in place of exposition when detailing the background of our victim. She lays the whole story out for us in one concise sentence while on-site examining the body. We also find out that having boobs is not exactly conducive to being a ballerina. Having been on the receiving end of many a near black-eye while playing volleyball, I definitely understand that.
The murdered actress turned out to be a doppelganger, a woman who the actual actress paid to be altered to be her exact double. She was paid handsomely to do so, being her replacement for events and obligations at which the real Odette didn’t want to attend. Odette and Barbara, her double, were involved in a train wreck, and the real Odette was killed. Barbara traded places with the richer – more privileged woman, and began her life again.
While the case’s secrets unraveled, the list of suspects grew longer and longer. I usually enjoy the twisty predictability with which they reveal suspects, but there is a limit to how far they should take it. I’m sure it didn’t help to have (almost) two murder victims.
I found it odd that even though there were gazillions (warning: over-exaggeration) of suspected perps, the murder board never really got cluttered. Speaking of which, how awesome are those scenes where Castle and Beckett take down the evidence together while sharing quick bonding moments?
After navigating the maze that is the trail of bread crumbs leading to our murderer, we learn that Odette’s grandfather was murdered, even though his death was originally attributed to natural causes. It’s awesome that Alexis can officially help dig up forensic evidence now, and she did so last night by observing that the man was most likely smothered. This may have been the point at which my incredulity was stretched to it’s limit.
The man’s caregiver at the time put him to bed and removed the pillows from the bed. Strange that – as the man was smothered with a pillow, which was left on the bed when he was found dead moments later. Not that “Mr. Manservant” ever told the cops at the time, even though he noticed and was puzzled by the misplaced object. It was a convenient contrivance – and I really hate those.
The solution ended up that Odette and her boyfriend didn’t want to wait until her 98-year old grandfather, who wanted to disown her for dating him, kicked the bucket naturally, so they hatched a plan to kill him. She created a distraction downstairs while the smarmy boyfriend/will executor finished the elderly man off upstairs. Their plan was to take the money and live a blissful life together, but Odette had other plans. She stayed single and used the cash to live it up as a party girl.
When Barbara found out about the crime Odette committed, she had no clue the ex-boyfriend was involved. So when she questioned him about ‘her’ grandfather’s death, the dude knew the gig was up – this chick wasn’t Odette. She was spending ‘their’ money AND began to blackmail him. He finally snapped and put a bullet straight through her and a mirror. Case closed.
Confused? Yeah, me too. I mean, I get it now – but sheesh – what an unnecessarily complicated chain of events. I’m also missing Castle’s insane theories. He was positively logical when throwing out various scenarios.
Both B stories were short but quite cute. The first one involved Ryan and Espo. Kevin notices that girls the two men question flirt with Espo and not him. Javier theorizes that it’s the married vibe Ryan’s giving out. So Kevin gives the other man his wedding band, and the women still flirt with Javi.
That’s funny enough, but the writers added in the complication of the jewelry getting stuck on Espo’s finger. They tussled with the ring, even enlisting Castle’s help – trying all kinds of tricks, to no avail. Beckett came to the rescue with a squirt or two of silky moisturizing lotion which allowed the ring to slide free. Javi finally wrenched it off, flinging it across the bullpen.
Another Chuck alum, Millicent Martin, appears with the Castle clan in the final plotline. She plays Oona, a theatre critic who gave Martha a harsh review in the past, but she seemed softer when they ran into each other. Martha invites the woman over for dinner, hoping to get a mention for her acting school in her column. Dinner, predictably, doesn’t go well. The two women get very catty with each other, and Oona leaves in a huff.
Martha tries to patch things up, and Oona relents. She knows Rick has pull in the publishing industry, and asks if he could read her manuscript in exchange for a favorable mention of the acting school. Castle offered to do whatever he can to help, and reading what he calls “chic lit” is his penance for doing so. I sent a tweet to @WriteRCastle this morning, implying that the authors of that particular genre of fiction are most likely picturing him as they write – I know I picture his real-life alter-ego when I read it. *Fillionswoon*
Lanie: “Not that many top-heavy ballerinas out there.”
Castle: “Well, I think there should be.”
Beckett: “Of course you do.”
Castle: “That’s not what I meant. Although…”
Castle: “Sounds to me like the old ‘gas card’ scam.”
Beckett: “What do you mean?”
Castle: “Your parents put you on a strict allowance, but they give you a gas card – so you can fill your car. But you fill your friend’s cars, and they give you cash. Some of my buddies in boarding school nearly doubled their allowance.”
Castle: “Not me, of course.” *stammers*
**Questioning glances from Espo and Kate**
Castle: “Don’t tell my mother.”
Castle: “Separated twin stories never end happily… except the parent trap.”
Esposito: “What’s up? Why you freezin’ out our boy like that?”
Ryan: “I wanna try and experiment. Having Castle along would mess things up.” (he turns to the Espo) “Here… wear my wedding ring.”
Esposito: “What? Get that thing away from me, man. It’s a mood-killer.”
Ryan: “Just wear it when we’re at the club.”
Esposito: “What for?”
Ryan: “See, I’ve been talking to my married-guy friends and they say that your theory is way off. Wearing a wedding ring gets them more attention from women… not less.”
Ryan: “So, wear the ring. I wanna see if women still flirt with you and ignore me.”
Esposito: “So you didn’t want Castle to come because”
Both Men: “all the women would flirt with him.”