When an ice cream vender is shot, evidence leads Beckett and Castle to believe that an unknown second-grader may have vital information about the case. Castle goes undercover at an elementary school to try and identify the second-grader but nothing goes as planned
A few things first | What a refreshing episode “Child’s Play” was. I know a lot of people felt “Clear & Present Danger” was a return to form. But for me, “Child’s Play” is my “Number One Fan” from last season. I haven’t smiled like this in a long time—not since “Smells Like Teen Spirit.” I feel good.
Case of the Week | Sure there’s plot holes and maybe tracking their witness via the permission slip might have been a better option but if they took that route, then we wouldn’t have gotten some of the awesomeness we had with this episode. A college student working for his dad’s ice cream truck is gunned down. The ice cream guy, named Anton, and three other friends were making fake passports to help out war refugees who were being used as slave labor. They ended crossing paths with a wanted war criminal.
Good morning Mr. Castle | At first, the crew is lead to believe that a kid witnessed Anton’s murder. So, in order to find their witness Castle “helps out” to see if they can learn the identity of their witness. Anything that you think a bunch of second-graders can pull-off, they pull-off. There’s a touching side-note about dealing with bullies—the moral of the story, fighting back can have consequences. But the act helped open the door to finding the identity of the witness. It was fun watching Castle try to teach a class—he knew how to fight back against them in his own way that was just oh so perfect.
A few of my favorite things | Call it juvenile, but the joke about water in the crotch area is about as old as it gets but when kids do it, it’s so darn funny. Yes, I laughed, sue me. Beckett’s expression when she realizes that Castle is the one person that get down to kid level is cute. And the tea party thing—probably reminded of Castle of doing such a thing with Alexis. And the teacher? Easily one of my favorite guest characters over the past few seasons.
Caskett working separately | I know, some folks don’t like it. But when they’re working a case together and in different locations, it can work. Each was doing their part to solve the case.
What’s up with Alexis | Turnabout is fair play when it comes to those who care about it. Alexis was being overprotective of her dad, understandable considering his lengthy disappearance. Alexis’ appearance was subtle. And that splice of the story was handled like so many things earlier in the series through a heart-to-heart at the end. The scooters were a nice tip of the hat to one of Nathan Fillion’s onset activities—roaming around the backlot on his scooter.
Home again | Different strokes for different folks. Last week seems to a perennial favorite among fans but I didn’t find it all that interesting. This week is the opposite. Rob Hanning did great job with the episode.