Castle: Fidelis Ad Mortem (which is “faithful unto death” in Latin) gave fans the welcome return of Kate Beckett as she is now moving back into Rick’s life properly. In other words, it looks like the captain will no longer be sneaking out of bedroom doors to avoid Martha.
Rick’s mother almost catches Kate having an early morning breakfast when she brings a copy of her just published “agony aunt” book around for her son to see. Despite Castle revealing that he caused Beckett’s team to be murdered and the whole “How is Kate going to react to this latest lie” plot, this episode was all about Beckett.
In case we needed reminding, Kate is a strong, capable woman who takes no prisoners. The murder, that she and her team investigate this week (without any help from Rick for a change), is that of Officer Bardot a recruit at the police academy.
Not surprisingly, a young Beckett was an overachiever when she went through the system and a current female recruit, Officer Decker (Ellen Woglom) is the new version of Kate. Instructor Fitz (Michael Bowen) takes Beckett through the academy and to the suspects, fellow classmates of the murdered cop.
The episode showcased Stana Katic as the uber cop Beckett, even Javi and Ryan took the back seat to proceedings doing little more than backup, and catching a fleeing suspect, than doing any real police work. Granted there were moments when both men did a little bit, but, it was a very little bit of detection.
Kate shows that not only is she the ultimate interrogation “bad a**” at the precinct, but the captain can also question multiple suspects and still winnow out the truth. The scene was impressive. It felt a bit like speed-dating without the timer, so “speed interrogating” is the newest revealed skill of Captain Beckett.
Rick Castle shows up a couple of times throughout the episode, usually with Toks Olagundoye (who is now Hayley Shipton and no longer Hayley Vargas, perhaps Kate can figure that one out) who provides him with motivation.
Woglom plays Officer Decker; girlfriend of the murdered recruit officer and illegitimate daughter of the local Irish mafia boss. She becomes a suspect but is later cleared after Beckett has a heart to heart with the new recruit. The two women have a short “sparring” match of sorts when Kate shows Decker some moves on the mat.
Before the episode is over, Beckett’s “tough love” instructor is shot and Bardot’s murderer is caught. The head of the police academy is revealed to be the killer. There is a shoot out, in the academy’s Hogan’s Alley course, where the murderer uses night vision glasses a’la Buffalo Bill in The Silence of the Lambs and Kate proves she don’t need no stinkin’ glasses to best a baddie.
Kate and Rick get back together to work LokSat as a team. Cue confetti and a popping of champagne corks. Now, apparently, the two can move back in together and stop the charade of being separated.
There is one bone of contention with this episode. (Actually there are several but only this one bears mentioning.) At the academy where Kate is speaking with Fitz outside Hogan’s Alley, she gets a hunch. Asking where Bardot’s locker is and finding it, she reaches in and with her bare hand grabs a blue index card with a threat written on it.
The camera even zooms in for a close look of Kate’s (or a hand actress’s) bare fingers clutching the card.
Captain Kate Beckett is a super cop. That she would mishandle evidence is criminal enough that this particular moment should not have happened. Are things getting sloppy in season eight of Castle? Perhaps we should ask Ms. Shipton.
Still, Castle is retaining its charm, even without the presence of Molly C. Quinn this week and a split second view of Susan Sullivan. There was a slightly longer look at Olagundoye’s Hayley which is always a good thing.
With this focus on Kate Beckett (Katic) one wonders if another yearly contract has been signed…
Fidelis Ad Mortem ends with “Casket” back together (properly it seems) so the title appears to imply that the two will be faithful until death which, if the upcoming titles are any clue, may be how the eighth season ends.
Castle airs Mondays on ABC.